Touring - Psych out?
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07-17-08, 11:48 AM
I am planning on riding the Courage Classic (www.couragetours.com) next week, it's a supported tour that basically runs from Leadville, CO to Copper Mountain, CO and back over three days. I'm trying to convince myself to go through with it.
I haven't trained as much as I'd like due to some work and family nonsense hitting the fan all at once. This will be by far the most riding I've ever crammed in to three days, and I don't have as much experience in the mountains as I'd like. Logically I know I can go slow, take the SAG wagon if I need it, and the club I'm riding with is full of totally cool, supportive people. Everyone I've told about the tour and my training has said I should be in good shape and they're confident. But I still want to cancel.
I'm sure I'm not the only one who has gotten psyched out from a big ride when things haven't gone exactly as planned (or even if they have) during the weeks leading up to it. Any thoughts on how to get my confidence back in balance with the rest of my mind and my body?
07-17-08, 12:58 PM
Take a few shots of Tequila, chill, suck it up and do it. screw everything else.
07-17-08, 01:07 PM
Having driven a SAG wagon before, my suggestion is to go for it. Even if you don't make it, you don't have any reason to be embarrassed. We like the company.
It is about raising money for a good cause and having fun.
It is easy to think that bike touring is entirely a physical challenge. Train enough and you can do anything on bike, the thinking goes. But, this isn't true.
It always helps to be in top physical shape. However, no matter what kind of shape you are in, there are going to times that you just don't have it. It could rain, wind, fatigue, food, being along, riding partner trouble, or just plain boredom. It could also be the fear that you won't be able to finish the ride you are about to undertake.
You are just now learning that bike touring is, in large measure, a mental challenge. You are feeling that challenge right now. Just like you will feel when the road keeps climbing and you legs don't want to push anymore, you have to decide if you really want to bike tour or just give it up and do something else with you time.
You don't pass or fail a bike tour. You do your best to enjoy yourself.
Go for it. You won't regret it!
Come out and enjoy the The Courage Classic. It's a wonderful 3 day ride/tour. It is exceptionally well run.
If you can ride all the miles on all 3 days, that's great. If you can ride half the miles that's great too; accomplish what you can and be happy with that. Set your ego aside and enjoy each day - however it unfolds. There is no value in comparing yourself to others or to how strong you had hoped to be for the ride. Accept what is, give your best and enjoy the experience.
I ride the Courage Classic with Team Courage. Team Courage is dedicated to helping kids from Children's Hospital (the beneficiary of the tour) make the ride. A lot of these kids have significant health challenges and to see them give their best on each day whether or not they make the entire distance is inspiring. Some kids use hand cycles. Some ride as a stoker on a tandem (I'm a tandem captain).
Some kids may ride 30 miles and be overjoyed because that is what they are capable of doing on that day. There's a great lesson in that and it is one reason I'm part of Team Courage. Two years ago one of our riders had set his goal on making the entire first day - approx. 60 miles. It took about 12 hours, the sun was setting as we returned to Copper but he made it and the grin on his face was priceless.
Until you make the ride you'll never know what you can accomplish. And, whatever you accomplish is great!
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