Breck Epic 2019

I have successfully completed my fourth Breck Epic Stage Race. It was a difficult task as my cycling fitness is not where it should be to be competitive but good enough to finish. This year I did have two crashes but no injuries were inflicted on my body.

 

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Endure for Longer

Sufferre. Suffrir. Suffer.

Pain. Hurt. Hardship. Torment. Torture.

What does it mean to suffer in bicycle racing? I thought I knew. I’ve raced from the front, from the back, and from the middle. I’ve crashed. I’ve beat the sun. I’ve podiumed. All while suffering to differing extents. Sustained vs short-lived? I seem to choose…..longer.

Sometimes the taste of blood is not a culinary delight. That acrid taste of suffering that really only occurs during a cyclocross race. It dissipates at the point you cross the line. I love cyclocross! I also abhor it. Why? 40-50 minutes of intense suffering.

I’ve aged. Matured. I better understand the mental side. I struggle. I medicate. I move forward. Always move forward. Constant forward motion.

I need to run, ride, live, suffer for me.

Again, I never said I was fast. Just stupid enough to go furhur. Get on the bus to your grail.

Thanks for reading, Mike

Breck Epic 2016

Death. It makes us think of our own mortality.

Life. Something we should cherish everyday with family and friends.

I did not deal with a near death experience but others did. I found life and reflection.

I was methodical in my approach to this years Breck Epic. I found balance. Work, Run, and Bike along with Family. A synergistic harmony was created. This meant that my podium dreams are still dreams. Not being fast made for days of immense beauty. Hail can be considered beautiful. A dirty bike has artful soul.

I reconnected with the Breckenridge from days past. Post ride meals at: Fatty’s, Mi Casa, and the Breckenridge Brewery. Good memories with the Soul Crusher! Endless discussions about bikes and life. Trails ridden from way back in the 1990’s.

Unfortunately looming over my mood was the death of my Mother-in-law just a week before the race. I was using this as my mortality check. Then, unexpectedly during Stage 2 a friend was stung by a bee which caused anaphylaxis. Without the quick thinking of racers near him, he would have died. Thanks! The days following I looked around more. I took it all in. I didn’t complain. I found my grail (kind of).

Believe. That is what my Son constantly tells me. If I believe, I can accomplish anything.

Mike Mac stated it best “people are amazing.” Yes we are!

Thanks for reading, Mike

 

 

Fear of Tripping

It has taken me awhile, but I figured it out. Sometimes I can be a tad slow and this time it took me half of cyclocross season to understand my lack of racing. I am scared. Afraid. Of what? Tripping over a barrier! That’s all it is. I thought it could have been 14+ seasons of racing ‘cross or my newly found inner peace. No, I tripped/stumbled over a barrier during warm-ups at Nationals in Austin giving myself a nasty injury.

Austin Head Bonk

This was prior to my MM 50-54 race. My head was ringing, pounding, and bleeding. I raced. I suffered. My head hurt. A few Lone Stars along with a quick reassurance from a doctor erased much of the pain. It left no visible scare. I went on to compete in many events since then. That inner fire for cyclocross burned dimly.

So, I signed up for a ‘cross race. My preparation is far from ideal. I will suffer. I will learn. I hope to overcome or at least embrace my fear of tripping. We all have fear, it is how we tackle it that defines us.

Thanks for reading, Mike