Not that the world was holding its collective breath for my return, but I must explain my prolonged absence. Life happened. Everything from empty nesting to job changing began to shift the upper ranks of my priorities. Of course, when I must choose between riding and writing, doing it is faaaaaar better than writing about it. I mean it was not like the secondratecyclist had a following of thousands, but once the dust began to settle the compulsion to write returned; that being said, I must, in the words of Robert Plant, ramble on.
To say that I am excited about the new season is an understatement. Yes, the pro season and my own season. For Christmas, my beloved gave me a subscription to NBC Gold. It is such an incredible gift. I can watch the pro peloton on my time table, with side interviews and in-depth coverage. This is also the first year I am going to give USA Cycling a shot. I’ve been riding long enough now that I want to see how I stack up to other riders; so my training this off season has been different, and I believe that it has been more productive. My target date is February 25th, the first race of the season.
Now, this brings me to race thinking. It is an area where I have very little to no experience at all. Yes, I watch pros. I study technique. I train. I discuss with people who do race, but the actual part of doing it has yet to come. My readers may or may not remember, I couple of years ago, I raced and won a small non-categorized circuit race, but I have a feeling that it will not be the same. I do have concerns: crashing my bike (not sponsored) and embarrassing myself. Injury to myself is way down on the list because that will eventually heal. It is odd that I really do not know why I feel the actual need to race. Maybe it will only take a lanterne rouge placing to crush the feeling, but I have to do it. I am rapidly approaching my 48th birthday and feel that I am close to being in my best riding shape since its inception. All I can do is my best. I do catch myself thinking of various scenarios: break aways, jumping a sprint to early, starting a sprint too late, avoiding a box-in, conserving too much energy, burning matches too early, and on and on. Time will tell.