Athlete’s time they’re season’s results through an intricate series of peaks and troughs. Getting this right can be the difference between being an Olympic gold medallist and being a lucky top twenty, but for the rest of us at a club level it’s just as crucial – However all those great plans can fall out of the window when a decent bought of sickness comes around!
In last year’s cross season (“11/”12) everything just fell into place – I had nothing planned and all I wanted to do was race. My rough guess before the season was that I’d be okay if I could finish in the top half at most events. In my first race last year I finished in the top 20 (out of 133) with no grid position and then the rest of the season followed suit with 8th position at Penshurst being my high point. I think the lowest down the field I ever ended up was in the top quarter.
So with a summer’s worth of training and racing completed I was expecting big things from this winter’s ‘cross season. My first event went well and I managed to open up my points table in a similar fashion to last year, before following this up with 7th in muddy conditions at Round 2. The following two results were okay and then one round got cancelled. I missed the next due to my birthday and the damage was done – that was all it took for me to lose the feeling with my bike and after a third round was missed due to it being cancelled my big comeback was over!
Mentally I’d given up – I’d now missed half the season’s races and I’d decided I wasn’t going to get the top ten’s that I’d wanted. At this stage even if your body says yes, it still isn’t going to happen because mental toughness is more important! But even if I was going to pull it together, something else was just about to say no!
A couple of small colds stopped me from taking my training too seriously over Christmas before the flu hit me – not the start to 2013 that I was looking for! It’s not cost me any gold medals but I hate time away from the bike!
Whilst the pro’s are sunning themselves on winter training camps down south I’ve forced myself out into the grim, muddy, sludge of Sussex for the past two days, semi recovered mostly due to my lack of patience! I know I’ll recover faster off the bike, but I just can’t do it.
That’s why I love cycling as a hobby rather than a profession – the pros would be forced to rest, to stop and then when they’re better they’d be forced to ride. Where as I can always ride my bike, even when it’s bad for me!
Glen runs THE.TRIBECA.SPORT.WØRKSHOP which is based at 28 London Road, Southborough, TN4 0QB – 01892 533 339 – firstname.lastname@example.org . The shop specialises in precision servicing, race prepping, 3D bike fitting and high quality bikes and equipment. Drop in, give us a call, visit our Facebook page or browse our website for more details. He also runs the shop race team and club as well as racing ‘cross, road and cross-country nationally.
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