It is Sunday morning around 8:09 AM and today I'm finalizing my second month of training. Next week is rest week! So I have plenty reasons to celebrate. For those who don't know me, I follow a conditioning routine in a set of three-week intervals with the fourth week used to recuperate. My goal on the third week is to train for 20 hours or more. This type of training regimen was easy back on college days, but so difficult nowadays due to the amount of responsibilities and people I have around. Add to this my well-known poor planning and my open agenda. To be fast, drop riders on the hills, be at the front of the pack, contest a sprint and ride the Tour of Colorado in descent form, life needs to have structure and a well-elaborated training schedule. Despite all the week's inconsistencies, I think today is possible to train for four hours and achieve my third-week goal!
Since Thursday I realized that I had my momentum back. The flu, cough, and the weakness were a thing of the past. I still had the job insecurity pestering me and other ongoing social things. Although I managed to take on each possible opportunity and at the end I got a great training day. In the morning, it was all about strengthening the core, at lunch time I rode for 2.30 and by night time I was pumping up the upper body. If you all recall, Wednesday I did a three training sessions. Was I beaten by Thursday night? You bet. My bike ride was challenging. For the first time I ventured to back to back long hilly roads; yes I'm slow and heavy. My primary goal was to keep my heart in zone 3. I'm not yet ready to do intervals; I'm set by climbing slow and easy to burn the midsection fat or love handles.
Friday probe to be interesting because I tried to emulate what I did on Wednesday. Legs weight training followed by an hour of cycling. To spice up things, I rode my bike most of the time on the 53x14. My goal was to start training the legs to smash big gears. It was important to have a good form rather to have a high cadence. Sure it was fun and easy with the tailwind pushing me, but hard and demoralizing with the wind against me. Too early in the training program to have strength and stamina, my anaerobic days are one month and half away perhaps. I'm not a happy camper when other riders pass me. I know I can go as fast as they not to mention going uphill. Sure I can climb, that's my terrain you know! But this is my base mileage three months. I gotta avoid being on red zone. Believe me I'm itching to go fast, close gaps, and breakaway with the best riders of my group ride. I long for the day that on the decisive climbs, I will be the one doing the attacks and counter attacks. I know what I'm capable of... But I owe to stay focus. These three months will have a big pay off when I start doing intervals sessions.
Last week I thought I will not see rain in San Diego until next year. Saturday morning was my big day to get the 4-hour ride done. It's been three weeks that I wanted to assess my physical conditioning during the fourth hour, but my life with bells and whistles, GF's drama, and other circumstances have prevented it me from riding for four hours straight. I wasn't too motivated when I saw the cloudy sky and heard the weather man brag about the 90% chance of rain. I had the sightliest doubt, I knew I wouldn't dare to ride. One thing is to ride in the middle of day when on a rainy day another is to solo the cold flooded streets of San Diego at 7 AM. But since I wanted to so bad to accomplish my goals, I grabbed my rain wear and embraced the idea that I would get wet no matter what. Sure, I like challenges and I rode east to Santee and 52 HWY hoping to get rain-on while climbing the long hills. It didn't rain on my way there, but God bless the sky heart it poured on my way back. I had to stop to put my glasses on because the nail sharpening rain drops were leaving blind. The head wind make things interesting, but seasoned in rainy days I was able to get home safe but surely soaking wet. Nothing special only 2:30 hrs in the bike. Again, I said it to myself... “Lance Armstrong said that if you train in the rain it counts as twice”
All day I’ve been thinking is Thursday. The beginning of the day was gloomy just like it was the morning sky. I had a migraine, some flu symptoms remaining, and the feat to wake up my son to go to school and endure all the excuses that come along. The thought of job insecurity simply ended up obscuring my morning and sooner than I had expected I had serious doubts.
Last time I wrote on my training blog, I reported being under flu simptoms and doubted I could continue my training with the same intensitiy. Undoubtly I endured the Sunday and Monday dissappointed just staring at my bike and feeling how my body weakened. These two forced rest days felt like two weeks of inactivity. Sunday was such a calamity; I hated myself and the world and suffer deliriums because of Nyquil overdose. On Monday, on the other hand, was kind of my redemption day, I cleaned the R3-SL and went out for diner with my GF. We simply pig-out in style and best I got happy drunk and self-declared cure from the flu.
I gotta tell you that on Tuesday I looked on forward to resume training. However, once again I felt victim of my poor planification and my ever lasting family and work responsibilities despite having a good start. My manager communicated me about a work opportunity; she made clear her intention to have a meeting to review some material. Work is work and the money is very good because without I will not be who I am or have what I have. No brainer. I decided to stay wide open to meet her at her time convienience; the root of the problem became that she never specified our meeting time. At lunch time, I rushed to the gym and completed a 45-minute core session then quickly headed back to my work desk. Surprise, surprise… She still didn’t have a definite time for us to meet. Two hours later GF showed up to say too many times she was hungry and was asking about travel and weekend plans all these while I was trying to find a way to pay my rent. At the end, I settled with one hour around-the-neightborhood bike ride which left me upset rather than fulfilled. At night, I had to host my photography group meeting and the opportunity to go to the gym at night was pretty much null.
Sometimes I imagine those who have no family or pay no rent because they have the excuse for not to work. Trust me I know many of these individuals. These weasels, leechers and scoundrels have the bad habit of complaining and line up all sort of excuses for not trying hard. Boy oh boy... If I at least have the nerve to have an excuse.
This preparation for the Tour of Colorado is challenging, so far it’s frustrating not to have the time to go for an endless bike ride. Job insecurity, end-of-the-month season, a ten-year old to name the few are some of my biggests challenges. Add to this my chronic hip injury and my condition of being “soft” a.k.a prone to break so easily. I certainly don’t have any nerve left to worry about me being chubby or that my health insurance was cancelled. So you tell me how can someone who doesn’t pay rent have lost of excuses for not trying? If something disinguish me from my family (or those wanna be’s) is that I had transformed what can be my excuse into a challenge. Yes, I'm well-known to my friends as someone who always is complaining about something and has too many regrets. I love to complain, yes too ***** about life injustices and such. All this ranting is pure motivation which pretty much have enabled me to get the job done and be hungry, thirsty and wanting more. It’s not easy although I make it look easy. On top, something I’m certain life ain’t going to get any easy but harder. The best I could do is to have a razor sharp mentality and always have my comtemptous auto-critic to give me hell for not giving my best.
My above-mentioned stand has been my mantra throughout the day. Sure, it was gloomy and I felt sick again, yes I did rush my legs workout again because my stupid manager… But I found an opportunity in the middle of day to ride my bike for 1:20 hr. And what is best the night is wide open for me to return to the gym and do at least 45 minute of upper body conditioning. Now I don’t have any excuses for not trying hard. If I'm sore tomorrow so be it, this is my only opportunity and I gotta make the most of it!