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Old 03-20-11, 05:42 PM   #1
pablosnazzy
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what keeps you going?

you are out there, riding, you are tired. what keeps you going? what makes you pedal through the pain? what drives you?

why don't you just say "i'm done" and stop?

seriously, i really want to know what keeps you going.
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Old 03-20-11, 05:55 PM   #2
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20+ years of riding you just get use to the pain, when it happens. I can't remember what I did when I first got into cycling.
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Old 03-20-11, 06:00 PM   #3
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Legs go numb, and you just keep going. I cross-train, try to stay in good shape...

For long rides, big breakfast centered around LOTS of eggs, and CLIF bars on the trails. Very sugary with simple carbs, break down fast so it doesn't sit in your stomach and delivers energy fast.
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Old 03-20-11, 08:25 PM   #4
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I CAN'T quit until I get back HOME! All I can do is take a BREAK!

But, giving UP... I don't think I can live without riding. I never got that burned out.

There have been more than a few rides when I wondered WTF I was doing out there, instead of just heading home; but I just never was able to turn my back on my set goal -- I kept going and rode through it. A couple rides were cut short due to extreme pain, but I was always ready to get back out there within a couple days.
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Old 03-20-11, 08:55 PM   #5
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This is a good topic, pablo. Should get a lot of interesting answers/tips.

I'm a pretty slow rider, so if I'm with someone, keeping up is my motivation. If I'm by myself, I think of how much better it will feel to know that I kept going rather than giving up.
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Old 03-20-11, 09:09 PM   #6
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meth
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Old 03-20-11, 09:27 PM   #7
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^^ THAT's why you moved out in the sticks, eh?
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Old 03-20-11, 09:28 PM   #8
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seeing another rider up ahead and trying to catch them..if thats not possible just thinking about the workout im getting.
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Old 03-21-11, 06:08 AM   #9
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seeing another rider up ahead and trying to catch them..if thats not possible just thinking about the workout im getting.
That can be a motivating force in me, even on not-so-good days. I'm happy to report that I usually succeed, even against multiple riders drafting one another. Although I did get dropped by a girl once on a hill
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Old 03-21-11, 06:17 AM   #10
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hoping that the pain makes me stronger for the next time.
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Old 03-21-11, 10:23 AM   #11
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Most of the time I set a short term goal of getting to the next point where I can pedal easier, start a downhill or pass another rider. If none of those work, I get angry 'n mean and tell myself suck it up cupcake 8) On more grueling rides I pace myself so there is a bit left in the tank if I have to go all out for short bursts.

Your body can recover faster than you think. Unless your heart is stroking out, muscles are massively cramping up or something else physically prevents you from continuing, the best thing to do is keep moving and work through it.
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Old 03-21-11, 11:10 AM   #12
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It used to be ego and not wanting anyone in front of me. Now its about keeping father time in check. I want the nurse that occasionally takes my BP to be impressed. My my had a series of Heart Attacks in her 60's. I want the heart and C/V system running well. My recovery from my recent "health problems" were attributed to having a good C/V conditioning. MTB BIKING is the primary source of my physical health. It also helps the mental, what little I have.
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Old 03-21-11, 11:57 AM   #13
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I'm always just so freakin happy to be on the trails, to keep going is just the only option! I'm ridiculously competitive, but I've learned to swallow that while riding. Chasing or trying to impress other riders usually makes me attempt to ride beyond my limits, making me slower.

Eat right, never pass up a chance to better yourself, and have fun. Stopping will never cross your mind.
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Old 03-21-11, 04:10 PM   #14
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thanks everyone for responding so far. another aspect of it...what do you do to make you not quit? Noodle gave a great explanation of what he does. my friend told me while he is riding, he would be embarrassed to quit, and he is really competitive and will not allow himself to stop, because he doesn't want to be embarrassed.

it fascinates me, how some people are so driven, and others can just let it go. it seems that some people actually thrive on the pain, and the pain makes them ride harder, whereas pain makes my brain say "hey, let's not do this." i'm trying to figure out how to make my brain like the pain, and want more.
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Old 03-21-11, 04:40 PM   #15
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I actually think I'm addicted to cycling.
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Old 03-21-11, 04:53 PM   #16
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I mostly ride alone and am on my own resources to complete a ride safely. My view is that it's good to test your limits, but important to have a pretty good knowledge of what they are beforehand. Sudden illness and accidents do happen, but in most cases, reaching your physical limit with miles of trail ahead and darkness looming is the result of less than optimum judgement in selecting your ride. If I'm trying out a new ride that I know will test my abilities, I'll start with plenty of time, food, and water.
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Old 03-21-11, 05:31 PM   #17
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I've been a competitive runner for years. I love it, but everything I do is for the end goal of performance. That makes every time I get on my road bike a cross-training workout. But mountain biking is different. I don't do it to be a better runner. I do it because it's a ****load of fun. I get my "dig deep and push through the pain" kicks from running. I don't need to get them mountain biking. And that just makes almost every ride a blast. And the few that aren't...I just pack it in and call it a day, no pressure.
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Old 03-21-11, 05:43 PM   #18
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I think my background in running is what allows me to stuff the pain/exhaustion and keep pushing. There's a 'mental toughness' that I feel like competitive running imparted that I might not have had by biking alone. When you're on your feet, there's no coasting. You can alter your pace but you still have to keep the legs churning in order to get back home. I made up my mind at some point never to let a hill conquer me or make me walk it and became a pretty fair climber in the process. Can't say the same thing for mountain biking. Yeah, sometimes in a group ride I'll try gutting out some climb (not always the easiest decision on a 40 lb. trailbike), just for the bragging rights of saying I did it; other times I'm content to let the hill win and make me finish it pushing. I remind myself there's a fun descent on the other side and I may as well have some legs left to enjoy it .
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Old 03-21-11, 06:38 PM   #19
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I was passed on an uphill section when I first started riding (road) by an older Mennonite woman on a townie wearing a dress, so that is my mental motivation to step it up pansy! I also have a friend who lost his lower leg in the Army and he is a monster on hills. The combination of those two examples are usually enough to keep me going mentally.

Physically, I eat Fig Newtons while riding. I usually eat 3 eggs and oatmeal for breakfast before a big ride. Sometimes I'll throw a banana into my handlebar bag along w/ a granola bar or two.
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Old 03-21-11, 07:38 PM   #20
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Dminor's and Zephyr11's comments on how running maximizes one's ability to get the most out of their body during prolonged physical workouts matches my experience as a lifetime runner as well. Running really calibrates you to what a sustainable pace is for a given distance or interval of time.

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I don't do it to be a better runner. I do it because it's a ****load of fun. I get my "dig deep and push through the pain" kicks from running.
Same here.

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Old 03-21-11, 08:35 PM   #21
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To take an acronym from the roadies... HTFU!

I dig this thread.
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Old 03-22-11, 12:04 PM   #22
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HTFU, I think a Mountain Biker first yelled that over his shoulder to some Roadies, I might be wrong!
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Old 03-24-11, 08:13 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pablosnazzy View Post
thanks everyone for responding so far. another aspect of it...what do you do to make you not quit? Noodle gave a great explanation of what he does. my friend told me while he is riding, he would be embarrassed to quit, and he is really competitive and will not allow himself to stop, because he doesn't want to be embarrassed.

it fascinates me, how some people are so driven, and others can just let it go.
Intriguing... I can understand what your friend is saying. For me, it is not about being competitive as compared to others or their view of me if I bail. It is more internal drive that's telling me to keep moving... like "your committed sukkkah so PEDAL".
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Old 03-24-11, 08:25 AM   #24
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^Ditto. I don't care if I'm not faster than everyone I'm riding with, but I at least want to keep up. I feel foolish if I don't because nine times out of ten, the people I ride with don't mtb anywhere near as much as I do, so the only excuse for falling behind is lack of effort.

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Old 03-24-11, 09:29 AM   #25
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I'm pretty good at planning my rides for my expected capability. meaning I'm not gonna plan a 70 miler this spring cuz I know 12 and 20 miles are more appropriate to start. I'll do 70 milers this summer. however when I'm on the tail end of an all-day ride what keeps me going is the fact that I can't stop cuz that would mean walking, and even pedaling slowly is better than walking. sometimes my motivation is getting back to my car before dark. I also keep in mind things that reward me like a nice meal or a hot soak in epsom salt and menthol eucalyptus oil with a glass of wine
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