Training, racing, gear, facial hair styles and thoughts from my push to become an elite cyclist.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Sacrifice, Decisions

For me, this is the hard part. I've committed to race- I've trained, I've tuned, I've stretched, I've packed, I've stressed, I've planned, I've analyzed and reanalyzed my pacing strategy, fueling plan and equipment. But the issue at hand isn't about the race, or at least not directly.

Being a competitive endurance athlete is hard, and not always in the ways non-athletes would expect. Pushing through training sessions and ignoring the pain are remarkably easy once you've broken them a few times. What's hard is fitting racing, training and all of their trappings into your life without killing your job, your relationship and your finances.

Tonight is one of those nights that should be easy. The training is finished, my bags are packed, my bike and body are ready, and as much as I want to go out with some friends and unwind I know that it's not the right time. Deep down I know that having a few drinks and staying out late tonight would be a setback at 4 AM on Sunday when I need to wake up, shotgun some clif bars and red bull and get ready for the 5:15 racer meeting.

My solution is to feel sorry myself now, and to know that when it's time to drop the hammer on Sunday I'll be ready. As my phone lights up with text messages that try to pry me out the door for just one drink I'll politely decline and take the heat for being a bike nerd.

Sorry guys, not this time, but I'm in for next Friday.

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