Is it possible for pure talent to be hard work? Please don’t give me the “anything is possible” stuff. In my life, at best, I was mediocre talented in all of the sports I played. I had to work hard to accomplish things. Hard work transcends into all factors of life.
I discovered cycling later in life. I am in my mid-forties now and wish that I’d been spinning the pedals much longer than I have. As it stands, I ride with a w-i-d-e range of riders of talent and age. I consider myself age agnostic and don’t use my age as an excuse for not being able to hold someone’s wheel or climb with others. I train hard. Does that mean that I am unbeatable? Of course not! It means that when you do beat me you have EARNED it. I don’t lay down. I am not intimidated. The other day, laughing, friend of mine asked if I’d give Sagan a go. Of course I would! I’d get completely destroyed, but he’d know that I was there . . . at least for a second.
Most people who ride a bicycle for any length of time are aware of how much pain absorption and mental toughness many cyclists possess. Quitting is not part of any cell in my body. Talking to non-riders, we get eye rolls and the shaking of heads for riding 78 miles one afternoon just because . . . uhhhmm . . . we love it. I like working hard. I like consuming pain and a flood of joy for pushing myself to the absolute limit of what I can do . . . then going a little deeper. The will to fight is something that cannot be extinguished. Many use the excuse of winter to hibernate; then in the early spring, they are whining like a new born puppy.
This season I am considering racing in USA Cycling. As most of my readers know, I don’t just jump right into things. I have to research it and pray about it. Whether I decide to or not, I am preparing my fields for good crops. I enjoy the task. I love to ride. Yes, there are extremely talented riders out there, but I’ll give ’em a go.