Recently, i’ve been working some early ass shifts. 7:30AM starts, with a 10 mile bike ride each way. This week, my bike has hardly been an inviting prospect, when from my pillow as soon as I open my eyes, I can’t help but pay attention to the sound of the cars sloshing through what always sounds like a monsoon at that time of day. Cycling in the rain, in the dark, when its cold sucks, it sucks precisely one full bag of big dicks.
Even as a non-driver, I could still take a train/bus combo and arrive at work dry and fresh. But thats just isn’t what i’m about. So at a time where (if they have even managed to make it this far) the classic, well intended new years resolutions, start to get shit-canned in exchange for our older, familiar, lazier and self-indulgent habits. For me, this is the best time to get tough on myself, or trick myself or try and change my perspective. Any dirty old tactic will do, as long as i can get myself cycling and putting in the effort, then I am in control and taking responsibility for my life and the path i’d like to be walking on. I start to act like i’m my own boss. Making myself do things with the mindset ‘well i’d rather not, but here I go anyways’. If all else fails on the self-motivation, I change my point of view from ‘I HAVE to cycle to work in the rain’ to ‘I GET to cycle to work in the rain, so that eventually i will go on this bad boy adventure’. Sounds stupid maybe, but if you can excel at fooling yourself, cycling through the rain in dirty conditions can be a good time. (NOTE – get mud guards!!)
The internet is full of emotional quotes and tidy little phrases that are designed to light a fire in your belly. But i’d recommend finding what works for you. Only you know the truth of your own personal mind-scape. You know what you consider bullshit and you know how to make you get your arse in gear. Be tough, be clever and be awesome. When i arrive at work, wet, cold and covered in road grime, i’m always grateful to myself for having put in the hard work.
I just about covered this weeks target of 100 miles, with a total of 101 miles. Next week i will look to add an additional 20 miles. I’ve learnt the lesson of over training in the past. If you haven’t done any long rides for a while, its probably a sensible idea to work up to it first. A couple of years ago i threw myself into some 60+ mile rides and came away with a nice little bit of tendonitis in my right knee. I’ve read that the cold can exacerbate this and make you more susceptible to injury.
“Motivation such an aggravation
Accusations don’t know how to take them
Inspiration getting hard to fake it
Concentration never hard to break it
Situation never what you want it to be”
– The Sums