You don’t want to work; you want to live like a king
But the big, bad world doesn’t owe you a thing
Get over it
Get over it
If you don’t want to play, then you might as well split
Get over it, get over it
– The Eagles
Today did not go according to plan at all. My expansive training involving many back-to-back rides was supposed to have me geared up for this particular scenario with Days 1 and 2. It was Day 3 that I was worried about, as that is “uncharted territory.” However, a bad stomach ache at the beginning of the day that persisted for almost half the ride followed by an extremely muggy midday left me without any power and zero rhythm. Add then the other bodily ailments of a sore neck and back, extreme chafing from planking, and numb, tingling hands and the day was not a very good day. Now I have to hope that I can find enough reserves to get me through the next three days.
Day 2 was interesting for another reason in that it was really the first of its kind in terms of rides. As I said, I have done many back-to-back rides now during my extensive training over this year. However, this is the first ride I’ve taken ever where I was really sort of isolated. On all of my RTYD escapades, my destination was always somewhere I’d already been and of course I always departed from a familiar place. Rescue, although rarely needed, was well within my reach. But this time I’m leaving a place I’ve never been and biking to a place I’ve never been in a state I’ve never lived in and is only two-fifths of the actual journey that I’m taking.
That sense of isolation is somewhat mitigated by the fact that I have such a good support system in place, starting with my wife who runs the blog and all of my social media and got everything set up for The Flutie Foundation fundraiser. Add in all the people that have texted me to wish me luck and those people donating to the foundation and I’m really never alone. Well, I’m alone on the bike because nobody’s that’s crazy to follow me (although I totally would’ve if I wasn’t a normal adult with a demanding job) but I digest [sic].
I head into Day 3 losing an hour due to the time zone change and feeling relatively down on my ability to complete this attempted journey but if I can get good enough sleep, if I can stretch out my muscles, if I can find a way to ease this chafing issue and stomach issue, then I should be fine.
The chaffing is so bad that I called my mother, hoping for some remedy, and my dad was there–the athletic medicine savant he is–with a solution. As a result, I got to listen to a discussion between my parents about the best type of menstrual pad to use as a cushion for the days ahead. It’s going to be imperative that I find a remedy or a stop gap for this. At 90 revolutions per minute, I’m scraping skin against skin 45 times every minute or 32,400 times over the course of a 12 hour ride… but who’s counting?
Words of Wisdom
The lyrics above are from my favorite song to play when I’m feeling down. If an experiment doesn’t work while in grad school, throw this song on and get over it. All of the issues on today’s ride weren’t really my fault or avoidable so I can either wallow in self pity and doubt or I can saddle up and put in 150 miles tomorrow.
If nothing else works to lift my spirits, I can now just stare at this photo of Nic Cage as a banana man that I saw today. Instant smile, no?