I love the atmosphere of 24 Hr races. Everyone is having fun, joking around, but pumped to ride their best. I shared a site with Rick & Matt, who were tag teaming, and we got our pit are set up Friday afternoon. The rest of the evening was spent on last minute preparation, eating and relaxing.
Somebody, please, shoot me.
Something happened to me shortly after I made that comment to Chris and I haven’t told anyone until now. I was on this steep’ish climb, standing, grunting through it and for some reason remembered an article on mental toughness I read in a mtn bike magazine a while back. The guy who wrote it said, “Envision your mind being the driver of a chariot, and your body is the horse. Command your body to obey and drive through” or something to that effect. Corny and silly as it sounds, it was a turning point for me in the race. I accepted it that this was going to hurt (how’s a 24 hr solo effort not going to hurt?!) and got on with it. Even if you are in top notched shape, it's still going hurt. As Greg Lemond once said, "It doesn't get any easier, you just get faster."
I came into the pit at the end of that lap and had some hot soup, watermelon and water. It helped lift my spirit and moral more. I got back out and started to ride, and most importantly, started enjoying it. I closed the door on “The Man with the Hammer”.
More tomorrow . . . . cheers.