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  1. #1
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    Legs are 9/10; Motivation 3/10; Performance 9/10; What gives?

    I've been riding pretty fast lately. I've scored some PRs and near PRs in timed events on the track.

    Lately, though, my motivation to race just hasn't been there. No "fire in the belly". I don't think I'm overtraining (or even overreaching) as my volume hasn't been very high. But, the intensity has been high.

    For example, yesterday I felt like it was gonna be a crap day for me to race. So bad that I didn't even want to do a Flying 200M time trial because I didn't want a piss-poor time on the results website. I scratched my start. Then a teammate told me to "Race your bike." and I did. Recorded a best time for me at my home track and 0.1" off of my personal best. What the heck? I didn't even feel like I was giving 100%

    I've had pros tell me about how they sometimes have the best results when they are racing tired. Could this be that? Can anyone relate? Not sure if I should push through this and stick to the program or back off a bit.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Making a kilometer blurry waterrockets's Avatar
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    If I was not enjoying it for whatever reason, I'd just train for fun and get back to racing when I felt like it. The pros have to race when they don't feel like it. We don't.

  3. #3
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    I forgot to mention that I have Masters Track Nationals on my calendar coming up in 5 weeks.

  4. #4
    Not actually Tmonk TMonk's Avatar
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    maybe your motivation level is on par with your stress?

    sometimes, I get my best results when I really don't care how I do.
    "Your beauty is an aeroplane;
    so high, my heart cannot bear the strain." -A.C. Jobim, Triste

  5. #5
    ride lots be safe Creakyknees's Avatar
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    IME, nothing takes the fun out of riding like a sense of obligation. Makes it feel like work. OTOH, you are a disciplined, experienced rider who knows how to follow a training plan and work hard, so yeah, your fitness is there regardless of your enthusiasm level.

    Focus on the big hairy goal. Why is it exciting to you? That's where you'll get your motivation.
    "have fun and be kind"
    - an internet post

  6. #6
    Must Go Faster veloboy971's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TMonk View Post
    maybe your motivation level is on par with your stress?

    sometimes, I get my best results when I really don't care how I do.
    +1, sometimes I also get my best results when I feel a bit tired as I tend to play my cards better and not do stupid stuff which blows matches until it matters.
    SeaSucker/Guttenplan Coaching Cycling Team - https://www.facebook.com/GuttenplanCoachingCyclingTeam

  7. #7
    soon to be gsteinc... rkwaki's Avatar
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    I can relate. In the old days where training weeks were 20+ hours it was easy to lose motivation.
    A teammate, Olympian and Euro Pro once told me that when you lose your motivation and start to dread training OR perceive riding as your 'job' it's time to look deep inside and re-introduce yourself to why you are doing it. He also stressed the importance of taking some of the pressure off yourself (as velo and monk said) - if you take the pressure off and allow your body to perform you will achieve your results. With Track Nats 5 weeks away and decreasing motivation maybe you should take a few days off, sit back and enjoy yourself a little.
    "if you ride it the way it's meant to be ridden there's no way any wife is less of a ***** than a bicycle." - gstein

  8. #8
    Senior Member topflightpro's Avatar
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    I had a slightly similar experience a week ago. I went out for the Tuesday night race series, and once on the course, I just felt tired and lazy. I ended up just sitting in for most of the first race because I really didn't feel like working, then made sure to attach on to the right wheels at the end. I got my best result there this season. I mean, it could have been better, but I was still happy.

    That result had me a bit more motivated in the second race, where I got not only my best result of the season, but the best result ever in that race series.

  9. #9
    Resident Alien Racer Ex's Avatar
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    You lack motivation because cycling is a stupid sport with no upside that takes way too much time out of your life to be mediocre at.

  10. #10
    soon to be gsteinc... rkwaki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Racer Ex View Post
    You lack motivation because cycling is a stupid sport with no upside that takes way too much time out of your life to be mediocre at.
    Beautiful...
    "if you ride it the way it's meant to be ridden there's no way any wife is less of a ***** than a bicycle." - gstein

  11. #11
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    Thanks, guys.

    Quote Originally Posted by topflightpro View Post
    I had a slightly similar experience a week ago. I went out for the Tuesday night race series, and once on the course, I just felt tired and lazy. I ended up just sitting in for most of the first race because I really didn't feel like working, then made sure to attach on to the right wheels at the end. I got my best result there this season. I mean, it could have been better, but I was still happy.

    That result had me a bit more motivated in the second race, where I got not only my best result of the season, but the best result ever in that race series.
    ^^^ THIS is exactly how I feel with similar results.

    Last night I did a Chariot race feeling the same way. I couldn't believe when I looked at my file later that I posted an average speed 2.5kph faster than than I did at Masters Team Sprint last year as the first man. The Nationals performance was during a peak with the added intensity of the biggest event of the season (by the way, we got 4th in the fastest group, 30+). Last night I was faster without a peak and having my legs loaded up after a tough-ish block.

    I'll probably take waterrockets' advice of not racing for a while. Maybe I'll take 2-3 days off in a row, too.

  12. #12
    coffee-stained punk hammy56's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Racer Ex View Post
    You lack motivation because cycling is a stupid sport with no upside that takes way too much time out of your life to be mediocre at.
    thank you.

    you have no idea just how this applies to me, especially this year. Or maybe you do...

  13. #13
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Racer Ex View Post
    You lack motivation because cycling is a stupid sport with no upside that takes way too much time out of your life to be mediocre at.
    So true.

    Last year I went out with a woman who mentioned to her sister that I trained a lot and that I raced bikes.

    [Sister] "That's interesting. Does it pay well?"
    [Me] "I'm lucky to win some beer money here and there."
    [Sister] "So you spend all of these hours training and you actually pay...not get paid...to race?"
    [Me] "Yup."
    [Sister] "Well that's dumb."

  14. #14
    coffee-stained punk hammy56's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carleton View Post
    So true.

    Last year I went out with a woman who mentioned to her sister that I trained a lot and that I raced bikes.

    [Sister] "That's interesting. Does it pay well?"
    [Me] "I'm lucky to win some beer money here and there."
    [Sister] "So you spend all of these hours training and you actually pay...not get paid...to race?"
    [Me] "Yup."
    [Sister] "Well that's dumb."
    meh...we all have personal goals that normal citizens could never understand. Thats why we do it. Sometimes we just need to re-evaluate...this year for me I dont have teammates anymore for various reasons, so Ive not had the companionship, or anyone to share cost (most of my races are over 2 hrs away). I miss the racing itself, but just havent been able to bring myself to spend the time or money to drive to the races alone. Next year will be here soon enough.

  15. #15
    My idea of fun kensuf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
    If I was not enjoying it for whatever reason, I'd just train for fun and get back to racing when I felt like it. The pros have to race when they don't feel like it. We don't.
    Ding ding ding.

    I've got too much drama in my personal life to pin a number to my jersey right now. I'm riding enough for fun to keep my fitness up, and doing some cross training to shake things up a bit.
    Putting the Duh in Floriduh.

  16. #16
    Senior Member topflightpro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carleton View Post
    So true.

    Last year I went out with a woman who mentioned to her sister that I trained a lot and that I raced bikes.

    [Sister] "That's interesting. Does it pay well?"
    [Me] "I'm lucky to win some beer money here and there."
    [Sister] "So you spend all of these hours training and you actually pay...not get paid...to race?"
    [Me] "Yup."
    [Sister] "Well that's dumb."
    It's no more dumb than what my father does with golf. He takes lessons regularly and has for years. He goes to the driving range a couple times a week. And every Saturday and Sunday morning he spends 5 hours playing with a few buddies. And to do all that, he maintains a membership at a country club, which I'm pretty sure costs a lot more than all my race fees.

  17. #17
    Super Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by carleton View Post
    I've been riding pretty fast lately. I've scored some PRs and near PRs in timed events on the track.

    Lately, though, my motivation to race just hasn't been there. No "fire in the belly". I don't think I'm overtraining (or even overreaching) as my volume hasn't been very high. But, the intensity has been high.

    For example, yesterday I felt like it was gonna be a crap day for me to race. So bad that I didn't even want to do a Flying 200M time trial because I didn't want a piss-poor time on the results website. I scratched my start. Then a teammate told me to "Race your bike." and I did. Recorded a best time for me at my home track and 0.1" off of my personal best. What the heck? I didn't even feel like I was giving 100%

    I've had pros tell me about how they sometimes have the best results when they are racing tired. Could this be that? Can anyone relate? Not sure if I should push through this and stick to the program or back off a bit.

    Thoughts?
    I'm no elite athlete but I looked forward to those doldrum days. I knew that when I was feeling lethargic, a bit off, lazy off the bike, but I'd been riding a LOT, I knew I was getting close to peak fitness. It's as if my body became optimized for racing. It was terrible at doing stuff around the house, I napped frequently, etc, but when I got on the bike it seemed like my body always had something to give. I'd push over the top of a hill then punch it to try and bridge to the group that left me behind, and I'd make it! I'd chase someone just before a sprint (on a group ride like Gimbles) and curse myself for being impulsive but then annihilate everyone in the sprint. I'd do stupid long rides and be okay at the end, riding faster in the last hour than the first.

    I have a feeling you're in real good shape relatively speaking and your body is just tapped out dealing with that. I'd back off a bit, enjoy the magical dreamy fast rides and look forward to Nationals. When you get there listen to hyper music, drink Coke or coffee, and take in the ambiance. Enjoy.

  18. #18
    avatar by Sean Powers mike868y's Avatar
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    I don't get it. If you don't want to ride, don't. You don't need to ask an internet forum to come to that conclusion.
    Quote Originally Posted by gsteinb View Post
    it depends

  19. #19
    Resident Alien Racer Ex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike868y View Post
    I don't get it.
    And yet you saw fit to comment.

  20. #20
    Tiocfáidh ár Lá jfmckenna's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Racer Ex View Post
    You lack motivation because cycling is a stupid sport with no upside that takes way too much time out of your life to be mediocre at.
    sometimes the truth hurts.

    ---

    If I understand the OP correctly he is not lacking in motivation to race bikes but just feeling like his body is in a trough in terms of fitness or periodicity.

    When I was younger and in much better shape I have had similiar experiences, that I feel like I am in a trough and some how pull off one of the best rides in my life. In fact I remember winning a TT and hence a yellow jersey in a stage race feeling that way. I'd swear they made an error in my time.

    But now being older it's almost the exact opposite. If I feel like I am in a trough then I definitely am in one. If I feel a peek coming on then it's coming on. I try real hard to get it just right for race days.
    If you don't talk to your cat about catnip, who will? =^.^=

  21. #21
    coffee-stained punk hammy56's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike868y View Post
    I don't get it. If you don't want to ride, don't. You don't need to ask an internet forum to come to that conclusion.
    maybe someday when youre all grown up, and have real responsibilities...

  22. #22
    Wheelsuck Fat Boy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Racer Ex View Post
    You lack motivation because cycling is a stupid sport with no upside that takes way too much time out of your life to be mediocre at.
    I wish I was good enough to be considered mediocre.

  23. #23
    Wheelsuck Fat Boy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Creakyknees View Post
    Focus on the big hairy goal. Why is it exciting to you? That's where you'll get your motivation.
    Paging Dr. rkwaki, paging Dr. rkwaki....

  24. #24
    Super Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by jfmckenna View Post
    If I understand the OP correctly he is not lacking in motivation to race bikes but just feeling like his body is in a trough in terms of fitness or periodicity.
    I read it to say that "I feel really blah but when I get on the bike it goes really fast."

    In other words it's mentally taxing but physically working so great it's almost effortless. When I'm at my best I'm also a bit tired, mentally not asmsharp/alert/acute, and I have to think about making efforts, but when I make those efforts my legs always come through. I can keep asking for efforts, hour after hour, week after week.

  25. #25
    powered by Racer Ex gsteinb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike868y View Post
    I don't get it. If you don't want to ride, don't. You don't need to ask an internet forum to come to that conclusion.
    can someone with some spare time dig up some old posts...

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