Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Enjoy Your Life & True Strength

Those of you on my blog feed will have seen that I quoted Clas' advice yesterday. In Swenglish, "better to enjoy your life".

Yesterday had it all at Epic Camp - sun, rain, hot, cold...

We started the day with a classic Christchurch run around Godley Head - Clas and I took a route that had a few extra hills - if you ever get out there then we took the High Trail that goes over the mtn tops along the crater rim. The faster way (still tough) takes the road from Evan's Pass down to Godley Head/Boulder Bay.

Towards the end of the run (just a few hills to go), you arrive at a beach called Taylor's Mistake. I think an early settler was trying to turn into the harbour (or estuary) and made the turn a bit too early. This beach is the location of Clas' first date with his former girlfriend, Kristy Gough. Kristy was killed in a bike/car accident two years ago.

The accident had a big impact on my buddy, who was just starting to get better from a deep bout of overtraining syndrome (lasted three years). The thought of being able to train, and live, the rest of his life with Kristy was a BIG motivator in becoming healthy again. I think that he'd be OK with me sharing that with you.

We didn't talk about Kristy much on the run - we didn't need to - but we did talk about training, Christchurch and life-in-general.

Clas' point with the quote is that life changes very quickly - a lot like the weather yesterday! So make sure that you enjoy the good times.

I would add that you should also endure the challenging times as they are nearly always transitory and can be sources of strength and resolve. Early in the camp, Molina wrote in his blog about going to places for energy/motivation -- I can assure you that he's not thinking about sucking down Steinlagers when he's laying down on a KOM!

Clas' main regret about being sick is NOT the races that he might have won - his regret (if any) is the time he "lost" with a young woman that he loved.

If you are motivated by love then be cautious about turning your back on it to pursue a goal outside of your true self.

A tip that I gave him just before he became sick was: "remember that you don't need to do the hard training sessions every single week". A few years down the track he thanked me for that advice. For you, the reader, the secret is NOT epic training. This is an interesting place to visit and I know you can get the lessons with an occasional trip.

As a "coach" I reminded him that he didn't win his first major race (Kalmar) until AFTER he had been sick. There is a lot more that goes into winning than the size of the training load one can handle.

It was an emotional run for me - Clas was in high spirits and took strength from Kristy's memory as well as the beauty of the south island.

No True Glory - Kristy Gough.


True Strength
I think the wolf pack might be getting tired enough to work together!

Yesterday, we had a few hours of pacelining. The first was a very mellow group that rode together to lunch. We rode so friendly that the faster athletes were getting cold from not being able to elevate their heart rates. The second was a peppy group of 6-8 riders that rolled quite quickly from lunch to the motel. Clas kicked that off with a MONSTER pull and blasted by most of the field - only the experienced Epic Campers where able to get on his wheel.

If any of the people that were dropped are reading... you waive your rights to Baron-Kindness if you roll early without specifically telling him! In his mind, you started it...

:-)

We all have out idiosyncrasies and that's one of my buddies.

The film crew did an interview with me and started it off my saying that they think that I'm soft!

Clas and Monica (love you, babe) would agree but they know things about me that haven't been seen at Epic. So, I think, the crew is basing "softness" on a preconception about a willingness to help others.

In a wolf pack, kindness is seen as a sign of weakness.

The amateur cyclist's code... roll with the strong, punish the weak...

When we are under physical/mental pressure, an ability to think outside ourselves requires strength (or at least inner calm). If you think about it, then helping another athlete out can make the camp easier. Pulling a blown out cyclist at 200-220w is a heck of a lot easier than sitting on a strong rider's wheel at 100-400w while he shows his Alpha-Dog powers!

So I benefit at least as much as anyone I help...
...and when I am tired, I have a big incentive to break the cycle of pain and suffering in the camp!

That's another form of the Zen-of-epic.

Taking an "easy" day today -- just 400IM and a 150KM ride. Going to roll easy with anyone that wants. I now have a slight chest cough as well as a lower leg issue from pulling up on my right pedal. Going to see if I can settle that down so I can race the aquathon fast tomorrow!

Be Excellent To Each Other!

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