A random collection of thoughts associated with the sport of cycling, as relayed by one hopelessly devoid of too many competing interests. It's a one track blog I'm afraid. But hey, if you like bikes you might enjoy it. So keep reading and the worst that'll happen is it might rot your brain..

Sunday, February 01, 2009

The Harder They Come

It seems, to me at least, that here's been an awful lot talk on these internets about hardening up, being tough and riding your bike in the elements and all that. It has seemed nearly impossible to avoid the sentiment over the last few weeks. From where I'm sitting (reclining, really) we on the right coast are experiencing a winter. Fancy that! Anyone over the age of 30 might remember playing pond hockey all season and not really riding a bike at all during the winter. I know it's been a few years since we've all gone through the maddening routine of chipping ice from the walk and throwing down enough salt to pay a Roman army, but unless you just moved to NE from a sub tropical locale you really can't bitch too much. Nor should you tell anyone to HTFU and ride.

And here's why I want you (you know who are) to STFU about Hardening TFU. I want to be faster than those loathe to heed your advice in April and May. That's it, it's really nothing more than that. I want to put time into them during early season MTB races faster than Mike Phelps heads for the bong at a kegger. You all can have June through August and 'cross season to boot. When you're a Sport (cat 2?) racer for life like me the only bike racing related joy in life comes from being fast in March, April and May. All the articles written in all the bike mags in the world will tell you to avoid "overtraining" in the winter because, well, no one wants to be fast in the spring and slow the rest of the year. Oh yeah? STFU! Some of us great unwashed have followed this widely denigrated trend almost every year we've ridden bikes.

All of sudden people want to encourage you, Mr. and Mrs. Trainer, to suck it up and visit Mother Nature at her most bitter moments. Allow me to set you straight; This can be a particularly demoralizing time of year to meet Ms. Nature. Her menopausal hot flashes will entice you out of doors shortly before her icy mitts slam your riding window shut with whip crack speed. Let me encourage you to heed the advice of those common sense training articles found in Bicycling and tell you to just stay home and sit on your trainer. No one, I mean no one, wants to be a superstar in April. Just stay home and ride your trainer to nowhere. Let us plebes get in our junk miles and don't tell us to HTFU. We know there's nothing hard about it. Because, if we're remotely honest with ourselves we know the that the folks we see riding to and fro, weather be damned, on clapped out Huffys are harder than you, me and anyone reading this.

That is all, please enjoy the pictures below. Or don't, it's OK if you don't.


Blogger Daniel said...

I regret not reading this earlier, my friend and I rode Burlingame yesterday it was bad, really bad so today I did the dumbest thing: road biking + icy roads= big crash, almost ending my season. Long live the trainer!

8:17 PM

Blogger Mark said...

Is that chain slack post ride or is it always that way?

10:26 PM

Blogger badbrad said...

I got 40 miles in today on so/so roads.


9:44 PM

Blogger Brendan said...

Daniel, that sucks to hear about the crash. Ice is no fun without studded tires!

Mark, it has a tight/loose spot. I've been too lazy to walk the chain but I will get around to it.

Brad, keep riding for those of us stuck inside..

11:22 AM

Blogger Aa said...

You guys is crazy... I'm going to have the best season of my life and I haven't even touched my bike yet.
Well... I rode home from work tonight. 1.25 miles for the year. Holla!!

You need to train to not train... it's not easy.
If you need any pointers on how to relax... call or e-mail any time.

And... is there a such thing as a DEOPREPY?

8:33 PM


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