Thursday, October 05, 2006

The Search for Motivation

I'm sick. Not like bad-Chinese-food-sick or flesh-eating-bacteria-sick, but the lingering sick-that-sits-in-the-back-of-your-throat-for-three-weeks-sick. It seems like it's the only kind of sick I get these days. The itchy throat in the morning, gone with the first cup of coffee, back at night kind of thing. Not that I'm complaining, it could be worse.

It's not going to stop me from racing and it's not going to stop me from drinking this hefeweizen in my hand. However, I did miss three days straight of pre-work rides this week. It was more lack of motivation than anything else. Where's the motivation in the morning when it's cold and dark outside, when the alarm goes off at some ungodly hour for a solo ride and you're sick. You think to yourself, "I can get up, probably have a good ride, and then head to work... or I can sleep in another three hours and see if I can shake this cold." At least I do. And guess which choice usually wins.

I'm riding tomorrow morning, and earlier than my other planned rides this week. I'm going to make it though. I'm meeting riding buddies. My legs are itching to spin. My brain wants to lose itself in some singletrack. I've found my motivation.

What keeps you moving forward toward the end of a long ride, when your quads are cramping and it's that last, long climb back out? Is it yourself? Your friends? That kick-ass sandwich and six pack waiting for you at the car?

What's the motivation for the solo 24 hour racer? You're 12 hours in on your second night lap. It's cold. You're sweaty, wet, hungry, and tired. There's 12 more hours left. What keeps those legs spinning? The thought of food? Sleep? Just finishing?

What's your motivation?


Michael said...

What drives you forward is the desire to push yourself to your limit. To ride hard till your legs scream and then see if you have some more to give. What's the alternative--to concede and give up, to know forever you failed and capitulated. As Armstrong said you know that the pain will end when you cross the line. If you give up, howver, the pain will never end! So you ask yourself: Which do I want to live with?

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