This past weekend, I was given two pretty blatant reminders about what happens when you start to think to highly of yourself. So, let me tell you a little story so that perhaps you can learn from my mistakes.
Last Saturday, I was heading out on my second Team Revolution ride. Our options were a 51 mile route with some significant hill climbing or a more moderate 35 mile ride with rollers. As Saturday approached, the weather was offering a picture perfect spring day in Sonoma County. I should have been very excited except I wasn’t.
The problem was time. As in, not enough of it. Sherry and I have an unspoken rule that I am always home by noonish on weekend rides so that we can spend time together. That was going to be challenging since the ride started at 8:30. As I am running the numbers, such as distance, speed, feet of climbing, etc., I have a concern about when we will be done and opt for the shorter ride. To be honest, I am a little bummed that I won’t get to do the climbs.
Still, I want to go further then 35 miles because, to be honest, that doesn’t sound like much of a challenge (big mental faux pas). That’s when I created my new plan. I would ride to and from the start. This added 20 miles and would get he home by 12:30. Cool! I am still bummed to miss the climb but at least I am getting in a decent ride.
Let’s cut to Friday night when Sherry asked what time I would be home on Saturday. I explain that since we have appointments at 2:30 my goal is to be back by 12:30. Then she reminds me about our eye exams at noon. Damn!!! I completely forgot all about them. Now I need to be done by 11:30. Long story short, it doesn’t matter how I run the numbers I realistically only have one option – drive to Windsor and ride 35 miles. Now, I am down right pissy about the ride. I even e-mailed Coach Tim a profanity-laced rant about how short my ride would be the next day.
Saturday dawns as the perfect day to be on a bike, for any distance, but still I was stewing about only going 35 miles. I hung with friends during the pre-ride coffee and although it helped I am still in a mood. As the ride starts, I am continued to focused on the “lack” of miles instead of enjoying the day, the scenery, and the time spent with friends.
You know what happened. At around mile 16, Karma climbed out of my jersey pocket up to my shoulder. Upon arrival she bitch slapped me so hard I couldn’t keep up with the group and got dropped. She then spent the next few miles throwing out anchors and basically making me work my ass off while continuing to fall further behind. When the 35 miles were done I was totally flogged.
You might think that was the end of it but no. Once you get on Karma’s bad side, she lets you know it for a while. She rode with me again on Sunday where she took the form of exhausted legs from my “short” ride the day before. As a parting gift, she bounced me off the pavement (that means I crashed for my non-cycling readers) at around mile 16 so I turned around for a long, painful ride home. And the total mileage for the day – 30 miles.
The bottom line is that I started taking rides for granted. I started to think a little too highly of myself and my cycling abilities. I started thinking that I was too strong to only ride 35 miles. The result? I was either struggling or in pain after my respective 35 and 30 mile rides.
I am actually feeling fine this morning so I think she is done with for now. However, you know she’s not far away. I will do my best to ensure I don’t get on her bad side again and can’t until the next ride, no matter how long it is.