It has been some time since I was really training. Since July, when I stopped riding with a computer in fact. I didn’t plan on having a ‘cross goal to work towards. Actually I had originally planned on starting my base miles soon. Cross was just going to be a way for me to keep some of what I had built on the road over the last season. But now I have an actual goal for the end of the ‘cross season and some more concrete goals for next season (helping the Juniors!) I just kinda fell back into not only riding with a computer, but putting my heart rate monitor on too.

My first interval session showed me that I’d lost more than I thought. But that might be another post. One about the way we trick ourselves into thinking that what were doing is enough. The “Enough” mindset as I just decided to start calling it. Anyway, yesterday I kicked my own ass (which is the best kind of ass kicking) on a hill I used to these purposes in the spring.  I was getting my ass kicked then, but not nearly as bad as I was yesterday.

I swear I was having fun.

I’m ok with that ass kicking. It was humbling, and its good to be humbled. Brings a bit of perspective. A look at what you’re actually capable of, not what you think you’re capable of. Which are two different things.

I also know that part of this re-commitment to training is a retreat into something I know. My life has been slightly unmoored at the moment. Training, which means writing out a plan, thinking about peaks and executing the plan, is a refuge. A place for me to hang on to when everything feels like its shifting.

I believe I needed the time off from focused training to relearn how to have fun on a bike without losing myself to the pain of racing and the seemingly endless intervals. Like I said on Monday, there is fun to be had on a bike that has nothing to do with racing. But the schedule of training does something for me. Something that it seems I need, or I wouldn’t keep coming back to it. For me, the good results come when I’ve followed a plan, something I have to be accountable to. My secret hope is that if I can stick to it long enough, confirm to myself enough times that I can set out to do something and ACTUALLY follow through with it, that the discipline will filter down to the parts of my life that matter more than stupid bike racing.

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