I‘ve been thinking about what I want to accomplish this year. Last year I was thinking about doing the 3 State 3 Mountain challenge and spent most of my energy February, March and April preparing for it. Because I put the work in I got through the ride without too much suffering. My summer week long tour was the Tour de Kota in South Dakota which was fun but not particularly challenging and the rest of the summer was riding charity tours and hammering my brains out trying to keep up with Luke. What should be on my agenda this year?
A book I was reading told me I should be planning out my “Calender” right now and figuring out what events I want to “peak” for and start planning my training around those dates. I want to do the 3S3M Challenge again because it was an awesome ride and I want to see what that climb up Lookout Mountain is like since I missed it last year because of Tornado damage. That gives me a solid date of May 5th to be in Century shape.
What about after that? I have been hearing a little about GOBA, the Great Ohio Bike Adventure from my Mom and Dad. That could be on my plate, and then there is Colorado. There are two big bike tours I know of in the Colorado Rockies. Ride the Rockies and The Bicycle Tour of Colorado. Ride the Rockies is the second week of June and uses a lottery system to pick 2000 riders from an expected 3500 applications and the Bicycle Tour of Colorado is the third week and is limited to the first 1500 people to sign up.
I rode the Bicycle Tour of Colorado once and it was an awesome ride, unfortunately I was so completely broken down at the end of every day’s ride that I unable to enjoy myself. I was also 45 pounds heavier. I swore I would never go back, but now I want to go test myself again. I have 5 months to prepare if I do and with the right motivation I could perhaps be 25 pounds lighter by June? The Bicycle Tour would mean missing GOBA though and GOBA is fun.
Then there is the self supported tour. I would really enjoy taking a week or two and riding self supported, camping and basically just bumming around. Ideally this would be in Oregon or Washington in August when the asphalt is boiling in Southern Illinois. The problem is being alone, and leaving Shauna alone. She grants me a week leave for a cycling tour without much problem every year. Two weeks is pushing it, the answer of course is getting her to go with me. Easier said then done.
Then there is racing. Now look, I know what your thinking, Matt a cyclist as talented and strong as you should be racing, or maybe you’re thinking Matt you have no business pinning a number on? I had an interest in racing last year, but it never went beyond an interest. When I watched a few youtube videos of criterium racing gone wrong, and read about a young man in St. Louis who died from a crash in a criterium I began to think maybe it wasn’t such a good idea. I think if I was going to race it would be on a mountain bike. I think it would be safer and less stressful, of course it would require riding my mountain bike in summer, traveling hundreds of miles to ride a few laps around a boring course to finish near last with a group of newb scrubs like myself, so maybe that isn’t in my future.