Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Trainer Reflections

Damn Michigan weather. Never seems to cooperate with my riding schedule. It's sunny all day while I'm at work and the second I'm home, the sky turns ominous and the temp drops. 40 and rain do not make for a fun ride, I kinda learned my lesson last time... So I resigned myself to the basement for some trainer time.

Coming off a really cold and snowy winter, the trainer and I have become quite intimate. Probably more intimate than I would have liked... The trainer cannot replace spending time out on the road, but it does have its merits. One that I appreciate is that it allows me to get lost in my thoughts with out worrying about traffic, stray dogs or looming pot holes.

This evening, as the pedals turned over in an even tempo, my mind explored the reasons I became a bicycle racer.

Why bicycle racing? If it was solely the competition I was after, there are several other sports to pursue, many of them with a lot less investment. And I already had a head start on playing soccer. I'd been playing since I was 7 and wasn't too shabby. If it was competition I was after, soccer would have filled that void. There was more to it than that.

I mulled over a couple different theories and postulations and landed on this. I chose cycling because of the trueness of the sport. You train, you push yourself farther and harder, and there are usually visible rewards from your efforts. You get stronger, you can ride faster and just maybe you get some good results. Your legs do the talking. No need to shout about how great you are, just show everyone. The results will come.

It's a refreshing juxtaposition from my day job at an ad agency. Politics rule. Posturing and perception are what matter - true hard work counts for nothing. There's no letting your efforts speak for you, braggarts and suck ups rule and receive all the palmares.

Sure, in cycling there are conceited braggers, cheats and prima donnas but they usually have (or had) the legs to back it up. There was still some effort there, some sacrifice. Totally unlike my place of work where shoddy performance is hidden behind a veil of flattery or being able to talk sports with the boss. In cycling, the truth is there for all to see.

It's no wonder they call time trials "The Race of Truth".

And the truth shall set you free...

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