Perspective & Cycling – How do you measure success?

perspective

My buddy Anthony and his family joined us for a little block-party last weekend and we started talking about how we met. Anthony is a “riding” buddy – someone you initially meet on rides, start riding with more and eventually become friends off the bike as well. We both started riding about the same time (exactly 3 years ago). We realized that our first big ride was 3 years ago at the Weatherford Peach Pedal. We survived the 100K ride, which was the longest ride ever for both of us at the time, and finished with an average moving speed of just over 16 mph (I think we stopped twice at rest areas).  For similar rides we’ll now average 23 mph with no stops. I chronicled some of this in my Evolution of a Cyclist, but it’s amazing how quickly your perspective changes when you get serious about cycling.

Here are a few other things that quickly change when you get into cycling:

  • You have no problem walking around a public place in tight, colorful, lycra shorts that leave nothing to the imagination
  • Spending $5,000 on a bike doesn’t seem crazy; in fact, it is often a smart decision
  • In converse to the point above, riding a bike with only one gear is “cool”
  • You get really excited at Christmas time . . . for the special “Holiday Flavor” Clif Bars
  • You also get excited when you get the weekly email special from CompetitiveCyclist.com. The excitement can reach a dangerous level when those emails contain the following works “50% off Zipp . . .”
  • You’ll watch a feed of a pro race on your computer, with Italian commentators – even if you don’t speak Italian
  • You’ll develop a new appreciation for your wife/girlfriend as you discover the hassles of shaving your legs
  • Riding your bike for 4 hours doesn’t sound like a punishment; in fact, that may not even be considered a “long” ride

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