Monday, November 9, 2015

I Like Chicken and I Like Eggs

I peaked at the Iron Horse.  I’m certain of it.  While my training schedule was aimed at a 50k trail run this coming weekend my energy was expended when I threw down that mid-blowing sub-two hour half marathon.  I still don’t know how I was able to do it.  Based on my normal running performance I should not have been able to run at that pace for that long.
Anyway, so going into the Rough Trail race I have decided to opt for the 22k distance.  And since that’s not what I have put my energy toward for most of this past year I find that I’m just not motivated to do it at all.  I’ll go.  And I’ll limp through it.  But my running season was over on October 11th.  
Oh, and where did the sun go?
Twice I have started a post about night riding.  Twice I have abandoned it because I can’t progress beyond “this is a good time of year to think about night riding” and there are already quite a few of those type posts out there.

I would love the opportunity to ride my mountain bike at night, but the reality is that it’s currently easier for me to ride at lunch than ride at night.  When I return home at night there is no place for me to ride.  But at lunch I can shoot over to Vet’ran’s Park.  Sometimes I can swing by CVP or Skullbuster after (or before) a meeting out in the district.
The realization that night riding is off the table for me has brought to light that despite my residential proximity to the Red River Gorge and its vast network of trails I have no mountain biking resources at my disposal.  I am in a mountain biking desert. 
And that’s why I took up trail running to begin with.  It was a proxy activity for my more loved pastime.  I had to stop and think hard about what to write next.  Why am I not as jazzed about trail running?  A big part of it is that there is no real outdoor community where I live despite being jammed right up against one of the outdoor meccas of the Eastern US.  And so my recreational/therapeutical activities do not fulfill any of my social needs.
This was the tradeoff so I could become a transportation professional.  I’m not saying it was a poor choice.  It’s frustrating to me to see hordes of obnoxious buzzing and roaring off-road gas guzzlers descending upon my backyard every weekend, and I can’t even find a respectable short loop to ride that hasn’t been obliterated by said ATVs.
But I digress.
Anyway, I need to get myself back in motion.  Once the Rough Trail Ultra was only a couple of weeks away I kind of gave up on everything.  Unfortunately that coincided directly with daylight savings.  It's not been a good two weeks.  It’s time to get control of things once more and remember that I’m an active person.

With TINY feet
 Looking ahead to 2016 I’ve decided that I don’t want to sign up for some stupid ambitious trail runs.  I may end up doing the Flying Pig and Iron Horse halfs again.  I’m pitching my name into the hat for the Leadville 100 MTB race again.  We’ll see what happens with that.  And the Mohican…I’m not sure what’s going to happen with the Mohican.  If I don’t get into Leadville I’ll probably want to do it again this year.  If I do get into Leadville I’ll probably want to do it again this year.  But there are other factors which make me NOT want to do it again this year.
The other mtb race option (if I don’t get into Leadville) would be to do the Silver Rush or another LRS event.  If I do the Silver Rush I’m going to want to do the Silver King.  Run fifty miles?!  That’s just effed up.  Like Whitesnake used to say…here I go again.
Nah, I don’t think the Silver King is in the cards for me.  But we haven’t been back to Colorado in a while.  The Silver Rush MTB race would be a nice reason to go back for a week or two.  It wouldn’t interfere with the school calendar.  It’s short.
I’ve considered moving on to a new mountain bike too.  I’ve had The One since 2011.  It’s not that I don’t like the bike anymore, it’s just that I think maybe a new bike would mix things up a bit.  But I’ve also gotten it to the point where The One is almost the perfect geared bike for me anyway.  Maybe upgrade the wheels.  Maybe get the fork rebuilt or upgrade the fork.  Carbon seat post and a new saddle?  New pedals?  It would be like a new bike.
I don’t think it’s the bike that has sucked the inspiration out of me.  It’s the lack of local trails.  If we had more local trails there would be more local trail users.  But to get more trails we need more users.  That’s the crux.  That’s the conundrum.
What’s really frustrating is that every time I head east toward the Gorge I see numerous cars with really nice bikes on the back or on the roof.  Mountain bikes…road bikes…but I rarely see bikes off the cars.  I know the local demand is high, but there is no local infrastructure.  They’ve already come; we just need to build “it.”

An "Egg"
The "Chicken"
I’m a complicated social character.  This past weekend I wanted to stay in my den and avoid other people.  I feel that way often.  But I also yearn for a community of like-minded people who enjoy doing the same things that I do.  I’ve never been able to find that fit. 

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