Training: The Fourth Bridge

The Forth over the Firth in Scotland

Before the New Year, it was my ride up Haleakala. At present, it’s Keepers Tour: Cobbled Classics 2013. Before Haleakala, it was one of the various Cyclocross races and before that the Zoo Hill Time Trial. The targets change, but throughout my life as a Velominatus, there always seems to be a goal looming over the horizon which spurs me on. Training, for its endless nature, is like painting the Forth Bridge in Scotland: it takes a year to paint and you have to paint it every year.

In contrast to my opinion of painting a bridge, training is something I fundamentally enjoy. Lucky for me, I love training for the sake of training; I don’t feel any compelling need to do a particular ride in any particular time. What I do feel, however, is the need to do any particular ride in a better time than I have previously. I’m fortunate to delight in the process of finding form and fitness, of getting better. I love seeing the improvement; I love setting incremental goals and reaching them through the elementary process of working towards them.

Cycling, in this way, presents me with an incredibly rewarding outlet for that bit of my nature that lives on seeing marked progress. In every walk of life, things are complicated. The deeper we wade into any endeavor, the more embroiled we become in the mechanics of staying afloat – to say nothing of actually moving towards an end. Yet, Cycling is simple; put in the work and the results come.

The more complicated my life gets and the more conflicted my priorities, the more I find I love Cycling for its elemental simplicity. Set a goal, make a plan, follow it. There is no one to look to but yourself. There are no external dependencies. There is only the endlessness of The Work.

Vive la Vie Velominatus.

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158 Replies to “Training: The Fourth Bridge”

  1. @frank

    Apparently he has a patch of leather sewn into the crotch/upper thigh area so he can grab the webbing with his inner thighs when he bails, assuming he bails onto his balls and not into the obituary column.

  2. @Steampunk


    Did you ask him about his time training with the Chicken?

    Frank…how small is that guy?  Or are you still wearing your ‘Fat Bastard’ suit?

  3. @Steampunk


    Did you ask him about his time training with the Chicken?

    Frank…How small is that guy??? Or are you still wearing your ‘Fat Bastard’ suit?

  4. @Buck Rogers


    Different kind of bike story here. Years ago my friend and I were at a gas station during a tornado. We saw the facade of a building across the street get blown off and fall into the street. Just as it happened a guy came flying down the street on a motorcycle, hit the pile of lumber and somersaulted over it twice before sliding sideways on the bike into the gas station driveway. He got up, dusted himself off, came into the gas station and asked for a pack of Marlboros. I’ll never forget that.

    FUCK’IN HARDCORE!!! I dream of doing stuff like that! Of course I would have been in the fetal postion crying like my four year old daughter after her big brother stole her Ferbie and chucked it against the wall (with my permission, of course).

    A mate of mine is in his 50s, about 6’4″ and well north of 120kgs. A few years back he was going through an intersection and a VW Golf (Rabbit in US?) coming the other way turns in front of him. Head on collision, he hits the windscreen and rolls over roof.

    Result. He was unhurt but for a few scratches, front wheel of his bike fucked but rest ok. Car was written off by the insurer because he bent the roof out of shape. Rider 1, Car, 0.

  5. Training ….    ouch ……   Crows Nest ride here yesterday in 40+ degree heat …..     one way to lose those unwanted kilos

  6. @Barracuda yeah friend of mine who has a terrible combination of pigheaded stubborness, over-ambitiousness & an aversion to training tried to do the 85k version of the first Grand Slam yesterday afternoon…she consequently spent 5hrs in the RAH being treated for heat exhaustion after being too stubborn to pull the pin at the optional stopping point half way through

    There’s a reason my riding was done & dusted by 11 both days this weekend, it was too fucking hot to stay out any longer.

  7. @The Pressure



    Did you ask him about his time training with the Chicken?

    Frank…How small is that guy??? Or are you still wearing your ‘Fat Bastard’ suit?

    Also Frank, why do you have a chain wrapped around your finger? Are you perhaps a T-800 demonstrating a slight injury? Would explain the weight issue….

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