Sunday, November 25, 2007


Sat, Nov 24, 2007 - 30.07 mi [Cycling]
Below are the particulars of my ride Saturday but in all honesty the ride itself is not why I'm so stoked. A lot of things happened this week that (frankly) are new to me. First, I participated in a competition. I'm not a competitive person by nature and it really shows. When I've played sports like squash in the past and people beat me (not at all unusual) I just think to myself, "Good for you. You got a good workout and it was fun." I've never felt bad or less worthy or pathetic or lost my self esteem from losing. I just never bothered to get invested in winning. Who cares? As I told my distant past therapist,"My biggest competitor is myself", and not to put too fine a point on it, I did not have high expectations :).

Whatever it was, it was just a game. A meaningless contest that had little, if anything, relevant to real life and I was happy in who I was, how I viewed the world, how I interacted with the world, how I was part of the world. I had my few close friends and realistically had no expectation of fame or glory. I just wanted (and still do) to plod along and do my own thing and contribute my meme to the historical record. When I was in grad school I remember being approached by what would now be called and "evangelical" but at the time,to me, was just another person trying to convince others of the value of a particular perspective. He asked me about my belief in the after life and I expressed my belief (based on my scientific knowledge of the time - and it has not changed in case your wondering) that I fully expected to be worm food, my offspring - if any - would carry me to the future and my greatest contribution would be from my scientific contributions which have a long historical memory. Many a great philosopher/empiricist/writer/painter/poet... were not discovered in their time or their immediate impact fully appreciated. Now don't get me wrong here, I'm not saying I'm the next Aristotle, or Einstein, I'm merely reflecting on the fact that I am content to make my contribution and move on.

Having said that, I ponied up an entrance fee to good cause for a weight loss competition and was just going to try and lose some weight to try and get below 200 lbs (yes I live in the US and am forced to use/understand non metric systems of measurements - gak). However, as you've figured out by now, I'm quite into cycling at the moment and the "prizes" were VERY alluring to me. So I decided to go balls to the wall. These were awesome pieces of technology, science and cycling. I came out in the top four which means I got a pair and I was shocked! With the exception on winning some BBQ equipment for placing a popsicle stick closest to a hidden nail under the sand when I was 12, I've never won anything in my life. Ever. This placing tickled me immensely.

As if that wasn't good enough, I also got my cholesterol tests back and for the first time since I've been getting these fuckers done, I'm in the healthy range. And if those two things do not make for a good week, I got myself a 30+ mile ride in for the first time, some of which included some single track. It was the second time on this particular single track and I had noticeable improvement. I was with some real pro's, but they were very cool and I noticed statistically significant improvement. I felt more comfortable descending on the track, got over some obstacles I did not the first time and the gang was very cool about hanging around for me - the weak link in the chain - as I struggled up some climbs or lost my footing. They were very encouraging (if you're reading: thanks Erica and Chris) you made my effort worthwhile and I felt good about the things I did better - though I do think Chris deliberately took a better endo just to get the best spill of the day :) ).

Finally, as if this was not enough excitement for anyone in 1 week. Very shortly after we began the group ride, I snapped my seat stem. A 1/4 inch bolt sheared in 2. I am of two minds here. First, I think it's kinda cool that my ass and legs had enough power over ~500 miles to knock this baby out. Second, I think this sucks because I can't go riding without a seat. We turn around (less than a mile from the shop) and I have the choice of buying a cheap seat post and taking the seat bolt (you can't just buy a bolt in case you're wondering) or buying a $45 carbon fiber seat post with better quality gear and.. well... it's a carbon fiber seat post! Of course I bought the carbon fiber seat post. $45. Wouldn't you? Hell yeah! Great ride. Great fun and Great week. I'm walking upon a dense mixture of oxygen, nitrogen, carbon dioxide..... ok air......

The particulars of the ride are below:

30.07 mi in 02:56:19 hours at 10.23 mi/h on Trek 4100. [Cycling] Elevation is approximate since this was a single track day. It's also a combination of the commute to and from the start of the group ride. I just added the simple MOB to the home MOB home ride. Accomplished another major milestone for myself. I want to have 1 30+ ride before the end of November and today was the day YeeHaa!
Posted from My Cycling Log

MOB Salem lake standard trail

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