Inspiration

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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Training... sort of...

When I first started biking I was told there were a few things I absolutely needed to come to expect in my first few months of riding… The first being that I would at some point fall over on my bike because having your feet clipped into pedals is forgettable. (You can only hope that it’s not while riding with a friend on a busy path around Newport’s Backbay with other bikers, runners and walkers in clear view with the sounds of “oohh!” as you slowly fall over in slow motion… embarrassing.) The second is that every biker should learn to change a flat and prepare for getting one, because everyone gets one. I didn’t give much thought to either one of these truths… and sadly, as of this past weekend both have come to pass…

I had gone out the other week to buy a spare inner tube, a CO2 canister with adapter and a small tool that’s used for changing flats. I didn’t think I’d actually need them, so I didn’t bother buying a bag to actually carry the little “just in case” kit around. Instead, I left them in their original packaging in the garage right next to my bike with very little expectation of needing them. So when I woke up Saturday morning with grand plans to get a near 50 mile bike ride in through the hills of South Orange County, I didn’t give much thought to the flat kit I assembled that was sitting very literally next to my bike as I prepped for the morning. You can see where this is going…

Suffice it to say, I didn’t get my 50 miles in… a rear tire flat made quick work of any notion I had in getting in a long ride;


Instead, I got in an 8 mile ride… a 1.5 mile shoeless walk and a 15 minute curb sitting session. I wasn’t alone in this by the way… sadly, my wife was dragged out of bed at 6:15am to a pathetic phone call of “Can you come pick me up?” She was good enough to get herself and our 4 year old son out of bed to come get my sorry, unprepared butt without complaint.

It wasn’t all for not though… what was expected to be a smooth but challenging ride became a valuable lesson on being prepared for all eventualities…I went out that morning and bought a pack that is now strapped to my bike with all of the “just in case” essentials.


I also learned how to change the flat and in fact, practiced a couple of times just to make certain I had it down… so I guess I still got in some training… although not exactly what I had planned for that morning, it was still a lesson worth learning... so it wasn't a total loss... and spending a Saturday morning having breakfast with the family was pretty nice too…

Friday, July 1, 2011

My weekend...

A co-worker asked what my plans were for the weekend… I didn’t give it much thought when I responded, “BBQ with the family… fireworks… relaxing…” and left it at that because that seemed to sum up the coming events of the weekend. But he asked, “No working out this weekend?” I thought for a second and replied, “Yeah, I’ll be doing some training…” and I laid it out matter-of-factly…

Saturday;
6:00am – 10:00am = Bike 30 miles, run 7 miles, swim for an hour
3:00pm – 4:30pm = Cross Fit Session

Sunday;
6:00am = 1800 meter swim in Long Beach

Monday;
7:30am = Lake Forest 5K with the family

“Yeah, that’s nothing… man, thanks for making me feel like a lazy human being…”

Obviously he was joking… but it hit me… “All of this training and I still manage to look like a sausage when I wear spandex!” I kid… I kid… sort of… (I know, bad visual) But I am working out a lot... and the true beauty is none of it seems like working out to me. In fact, it’s become more play time for me than it is training… and every weekend has some play time built in. It’s expected by my kids, by my wife… I’ll be gone every Saturday morning from before they wake to about mid-morning when chores and errands have to be done… and I’m right there with them. This weekend is a bit of an exception as I typically wouldn’t have a session in the afternoon… but everything else is normal… a standard part of my life. But why? Not certain… I haven’t put a lot of thought into it… but I love waking up with the sun… I love the cool mornings… I love my running shoes… I love my bike… I love meeting up with my fellow comrades in spandex to go for a ride or a run. Doesn’t matter to me if we stick together or not, we’re still in it together. I love that I burn several hundred calories before my day even gets started… I love the taste of cold water when I’m sweaty, tired and my body feels like it’s on fire… I love the feeling of finishing a long swim session… I love races and the atmosphere that comes along with it… I love the gear and the toys… I love the feeling of cool sheets against the skin of my freshly shaved legs (yes, I shave my legs now)… I could seriously go on and on, but I’ll spare you… because really what I’m trying to convey is simple… I love running, biking and swimming… so none of it is work or a chore… I guess that could change with time, but right now… I can’t get enough…