At 5'10" and 290 lbs, I get passed a lot going up hills. Even though I ride centuries, and try to put some serious miles on the bike whenever I can still I get passed by just about everybody here in NW CT. In the TOLH, I was the tail end Charlie on the 77mi route. It bums me out a little bit to get passed by just about everyone, but not too much, because I'm probably the only guy who looks like me who is willing to do nasty killer hills of death.
So, when I did a 5 day 220 mile tour of eastern Long Island, pulling a BOB with sleeping bag, tent, and gear, I had quite a few wonderful ego boosting moments, and one ego deflating moment:
Ego-boosting moment #1(day 1): Noticing that my average speed on the Island was 2 mph faster while pulling a trailer than it is in CT unloaded. Okay, that isn't much of an ego boost, but it was kind of neat.
Ego boosting moment #2(day 1): Passing a guy on a hybrid while I'm riding, pulling the bob. He had flip-flops on, so it wasn't much of a race. But since I get passed by *everybody* I'll take my victories where I can.
Ego boosting moment #3(day 2): Being treated like Les Stroud(Survivorman) at the campground when word got out that I came in by bicycle.
Ego boosting moment #4(Day 2): Being the most popular guy in the bar when word got around that I was riding all over Long Island on a bicycle. Ego boosting moment 4A: Person in bar asking me how hard it was to climb the hills on LI, and I quickly reply, "What Hills?"
Ego Boosting moment #5(Day 3): After pulling a trailer all over long Island, I took a ride out to Montauk Point semi-unloaded(trunk bag and handlebar bag, no trailer). Montauk point also happens to have the only real hills I'd seen so far. While climbing one stretch(after riding 30 miles unloaded and 15 unloaded that day, and climbing the montauk lighthouse), this guy on a hybrid passes me. Something snaps inside, being passed by a flatlander like that, and IT IS ON! I take off, uphill
after my foe, and pass him like he is on jacks. YES!
Ego Boosting moment #6(Day 3): About 5 minutes after passing the first guy, two women pass me, one on a road bike, the other on a flat bar roadie, both doing a good cadence. Again, that little thing snaps inside me, and IT IS ON! Again, going uphill the entire time, I dial up the wattage, suck their wheel for about two minutes, and pass them, again, while going uphill. YES! YES! Yes, they weren't racing, yes, they were girls, yes, they might have been doing hill repeats that whole time, but my legs weren't exactly fresh either, so woohoo!
Ego Deflating moment(Day 3): I meet my sister at the house she's renting for the week, and I regale her with my tales of passing the women going uphill. She looks at me for a second, and asks:
Did you get their phone #?