Monday, October 1

The Leadville Saga: End of Season

It's been an amazing ride so far. It's not over, no, not by a long shot. But I think my "racing" will go on hold for a bit. Time to slow down, rest up, and regroup.

The days are shortening. The air is turning cooler. Soon snow will be creeping down from the heights. I'm not saying there won't still be good days of riding to be had. I'm just saying I should probably stop keeping score for a few months...let that average mph drop off...take the long, easy way to the top...forget my obsession for awhile.

So what to do in the interim? Learn to knit? Dabble in quantum physics? Study for the LEED Green Associate exam? Run 5ks? All of the above?

Time will tell. I say I'm not going to keep up my breakneck pace, but my compulsive behavior, craving proprioceptive stimulation, makes it hard to slow down.

I had a few good visits to Valmont, training rides to Squaw Mountain, Kingston Peak, Corona Pass, my attempt at Leadville, the Alpine Odyssey and the Cougar Slayer...and all the cycling culture and hoopla of Leadville, the USA Pro Cycling Challenge, and the Alpine Odyssey!

What an amazing summer it's been! I'm still amazed, and I'm eager to see what the future holds. Next summer...just can't wait!

It's time for me to get serious, stop pussyfootin' around, and get in the shape I want to be in. It's time to stop whining about needing to do core conditioning and just do it. It's time to stop deluding myself that I have great cardio and really work to improve it. It's time to stop being a slob and start eating like I want to live to be 200.

I can do these things when the days are short and the weather is sloppy. I've got the time, the means, and the motivating target (sub-nine hours!) to pull it off.

I've got no excuses except laziness. I'm healthy and uninjured (thankfully!!!) and I want it. I want it for my family too. I want them to be healthy and active. We can do this together of we make it a priority. I've got to stop being weak, be the example, be the pillar.

And I need to give them extra time and attention for awhile. I owe them more than I can repay.

I've been inspired by this past year's Leadville quest. I think maybe my family has been as well. By the time the Alpine Odyssey rolled around Mandy seemed fully immersed in the culture too. And Beanie has expressed her interest in doing at least one of these mountain bike races with me. The big plus is that I'm finally starting to make the move to a better diet and better overall fitness. I've got room for improvement, but I've finally got some full time motivation.

Despite the end of the summer racing season, and the beginning of the cold weather commuting season, I'm still just as silly about bikes as always.


  1. I think its good to get away from it for a while. I'm hiring a coach for the coming year. He said we could start right away. I said, nope, I want October at least to just decompress and ride for fun when I feel like it. I need that.

    Have two more biking goals for the year. I'm right about 4000 miles right now (outside riding, I don't count indoor trainer miles). Looking to get to 4500 miles. My other goal was to bike at least once outside each month this year. Just November and December to go now.

    Then I am hoping to do a lot of my training this winter off the bike. Hockey, weights, rowing, snowshoeing (if we have winter) with a bit of biking thrown in. First race is in April (Tour of the Battenkill) and 100k road race that is a lot like a 1 day European classic. That one is for fun. Father's Day is Willmington Whiteface 100. That one is serious. August 10 is Leadville. That one is dead serious.

  2. Have you read Joe Friel's book, "Mountain Biker's Training Bible"? If not you might want to get a copy and give it a read.It might be useful in planning out how you are going to approach next year. At the very least its a good read and interesting. I learned a lot.