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I lied. I said that I was going to do a good entry today but, once again, I was too tired so now I'm writing this in the morning.
Did another 10,000 yesterday. The first lap was once again grim but subsequent laps just got better, literally this time. On the last climb I thought I would check to see "how much gas was in the tank", as Bob Roll would say. I bested the other lap times by nearly 6 minutes. I felt really strong and wonder if it will adversely affect me today. I was also able to get my heartrate to 184 (by my monitor) when the max for my age is supposed to be 181. Hell, I wasn't even redlining and could have gone for more. Well, okay I was redlining but I wasn't at the top of the scale. It felt really good to be accelerating at the top of the climb instead of struggling to finish.
During these days I spend about 4 hours just climbing. It's funny doing laps because people all shake their head in disbelief when you pass them a second time. Some climbers at Gibraltar Rock said "Weren't you up here earlier today?" I was like "Yeah, twice." As I was leaving they said goodbye and I told them that if they were still around in an hour or so they would most likely see me again. They told me I was nuts and you know what, I probably am.
Since 4 hours of pure pain is pretty long my mind really wanders--cycling must be the most purely torturous sport there is. When I'm pushing hard I think about riding like Big Tex (Armstrong), when I'm out of the saddle and The Beast (Ullrich) when I'm sitting down. I never think of Elephantino (Pantani) cuz he's too damn small and I can't possibly visualize what it would feel like to climb at 120lbs. Other times my mind wanders all over the place. Lately it's been mainly focused on screenplays and movies. When I'm really starting to suffer I think about this Italian guy who was going to try and climb 15,000 meters in one day. I'm sure he has a perfect climbing bike and probably only weighs a buck ten or something but still, that's near 50,000 feet in one day! I don't know if he made it or not since we couldn't find any info but it doesn't matter. If someone is willing to try and climb 50,000 feet there's no way I'm going to let myself quit on 10.
Now I won't quit but I could bonk. To make sure that doesn't happen I've been eating. I eat as much food as I possibly can stomach every day. If I stopped exercising and kept eating like this I would most likely hit 200 pounds in a week. On riding days like yesterday I consume more than 4,000 calories in just liquid. I weigh the same now as when the challenge started and, I'll bet, my body fat is also the same. I think this is why, in spite of all the injuries and illness, that I'm finishing strong. One week ago I felt like total crap but today I feel fit. Tired and sore, sure, but also fit and strong. I'm still kind of dreading starting on today's ride but I am confident that it will go well--and I do realize that when I've been saying things will go well is when they have done the opposite so I'm testing my luck here a bit also.
Thanks for reading. Just one more day to go.
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