One more sleep un­til win­ter train­ing be­gins!

Cycling Weekly - - WEEKLY COLUMN -

To­day I flipped my train­ing plan­ner from the ‘sum­mer 2018’ tab to the ‘win­ter 2018/19’ tab and, oh sweet Nelly, it felt good.

I used to say I was so small-minded and short-sighted that what­ever I was do­ing I loved, in a sort of inane, dog-wag­ging-its-tail kind of way. In the midst of a road sea­son I’d be find­ing it so fun that — whether suc­cess­ful or not — I would worry I wouldn’t like be­ing on the track when the sea­son came back around. I would think: “This is the good life, any­thing dif­fer­ent must be worse!”

Then win­ter would come. I’d get on the track. I’d feel over­whelmed with how much I loved it. How track cy­cling was sim­ply the great­est sport, this fast, wild, con­fus­ing thing was all that I loved and all I would ever love. It wouldn’t be sur­pris­ing if I got a tat­too on my bi­cep with ‘track’ writ­ten atop a car­toon love heart. Then the sea­son would end, I would worry that maybe I didn’t like the road any­more, and then I would love the road.

This hap­pened four years in a row. Un­til, sadly, to­day. I’m so very ready for this year’s track sea­son. I’m even al­ready hav­ing fan­tasies about the fol­low­ing track sea­son. Let me have all the track. All the speed, all the tac­tics, all the hand slings, all the sta­dium screams, all the pain, all the glory.

I don’t even mind if I have to do some los­ing as well. I’ll be able to keep my­self go­ing with that dirty sport­ing ego­ism that Nike is so des­per­ate to pro­mote. The ‘be­liev­ing you’re the best ir­re­spec­tive of cur­rent ev­i­dence to the con­trary’ mantra.

Which is com­pletely lu­natic, by the way. I can’t stand it. Apart from, of course, I suf­fer from this ugly con­di­tion my­self and sus­pect it would see me per­se­vere through quite a few bad sea­sons.

This par­tic­u­lar sea­son I am, how­ever, re­lieved to exit. So far I have signed no 2019 road con­tract. More of a pas­sive non-de­ci­sion than any­thing else but it none­the­less re­flects my cur­rent mood. Only one more sleep un­til that ‘win­ter 2018/19’ train­ing tab is ac­tive, and I can’t wait.

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