First Club Ride of 2008

Published on Mar 30, 2008 by in Cardio, Chi Hits, Racing


Does doing THIS all winter…


doing THIS!?!?!


after today and the last few decades?
i KNOW so!

check it out:


ain’t nothin’ says “MARCH” in Flagstaff
like pedaling your road bike (MTB Trails still socked in snow)
into a screamin’ headwind* that’s this close to tearin’ off
your socks, shoes, helmets, and gonads…

left Two Tree Manor this morning on my road bike
for my first Club Ride of the season.
my mind had painted a picture
-more exquisite than the finest Michelangelo –
of riding along, well sheltered from the wind and cold
in the whirring mass of a huge
peleton of happy-that-spring-is-here cyclists…

the outdoor thermometer stared blankly back at me
as i took a sip of pre-ride coffee to hasten my bowel movement
(gotta be empty to ride fast)…
it read;
34 degrees.
nearly April; 34 degrees at 8:45 am.

as if i’ve never meditated in my life,
my ego ran unchecked;

“Dude, it’s gonna be soooo cold out there! and those roadies are gonna
hammer right from the start…why don’t you just wait a few hours until it
warms up and go for a spin up SnowBowl or something? Better yet,
let’s go tele skiing…the Area is only gonna be open another week or so.”

remember my DL on “Perpetuation of Rationalization“?

i did my best to be strong as i poured some Fortune Delight into my Water Bottle…

i glanced again at the thermometer, hoping for a jump into the 40’s…

33 degrees, i swear.

the thermometer looked at me as if to say,

“What? What do you want from ME? Shit, you’re the wimp…Hell, that’s above freezing! Now go climb into your little lycra girlie shorts and RIDE! You call yourself
the Nordic State Champ! HA! scared of a little wind and cold, eh? Here’s what you are, the Nordic State CHUMP!”


I did what it took to get to the Start Line of the club ride.

6 cyclists crouched like chickens over their top tubes.


Thanks Shiva..thanks for destroying my big, whirring, warm peleton for my first
return to road cycling for the year…



Not only was the spring runoff pushing the waters of the beautiful Lake Mary over her own dam,
the whitecaps on the alpine lake surface danced a tango as i plowed my helmet into the rush of March wind…


At the base of “The Steps” me and John, a Cat 2 who spends his entire winter on the indoor trainer or racing bikes down in Phoenix, broke the wills of our other two breakaway companions.

“Go ahead Honch,” i shouted to John, “Don’t wait for me, attack into the wind!”

“The Steps” if you recall my DL’s from the past, are three seemingly insipid hills stacked one on top of another which come into your face after about 20 miles…in a car? you barely notice them. on a bike? into this wind? in this March? well, my heart rate jumped to 189 at the very first one.


Yet another field test proof of Wholistic Fitness;
at the top of the final “Step”?
sure, my Heart Rate was at 197
i was only 20 seconds off John.

to me,
is a friggin’ sport physiology miracle.

here i am, at my age, haven’t been on my bike longer than an hour since uh, last, uh…October? am dealing with the well known difficulties of first time fatherhood of a six month old…and…

and i’m only 20 seconds behind a Cat Friggin’ 2!

i’ll take that.

that to me, is called; YOGA!

Union of Physiologic Versatility!

how great is this Blessed Path of ours?


i’ll tell you how great this Path is:


no limits, Noble Ones; NO LIMITS!!!!

get out and do the DO!

head bowed,

the coach that still suffers (for you)

* very few headwinds are actually truly 100% headwinds; they 90% of the time some form of cross wind; although, as roadies know; it always FEELS like a 100% headwind while riding!

Photo 1: the start of my victory in the Flagstaff 10K Classic Ski Race. by Tim Allen.
Photo 2: my AG victory at the Sandia Hill Climb, 2006. Heidi Snell.
Photo 3: cold weather club riding in Flagstaff, by me and my gloved finger.

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