Looking back on this year so far, persistence has been a bit of a theme. Right in time for cyclocross season, I came across this quote on Pinterest that struck a tone with me- “I will persist until I succeed.”
I have been racing for a while (10 years of road, mountain, and cyclocross), and I have learned through a few burn outs how important it is to have not just physical fitness, but mental fitness too. My last few seasons of racing have been very mediocre to poor. After last year and another season of meh I got sick of racing poorly. I know I can do better.
This year, I have had more focus than I have had in many years, probably since 2010 to be specific. Whenever I don’t feel like doing the intervals, or some other hard workout, I remember some of my worst races in the past few years. I don’t want to finish races feeling like that again anytime soon! My strength training has been going really well this year, I am motivated to do the intervals and efforts on my bike, and I have made a few nutrition changes this year which has lead to losing a few lbs that I have struggled with for a few years.
I am both excited and nervous as hell for cyclocross to start. I have put a lot of blood, sweat, and tears into training this year. I know that my physical fitness is probably close to the best shape I have ever been in, but I still worry if my mental fitness is up to par. But, I will persist until I succeed.
Success in racing means many things to me. This year, my main goal has been to be proud of the efforts I put into races and to set goals based off of controllable factors. I have been mostly successful keeping my head in the right place. I have other goals too, such as where I’d like to finish, but those factors are somewhat out of my control- I can’t control who shows up to a race and how my competitors train. All I can control is MY OWN effort in racing and training.
What’s great about cyclocross, and mountain bike racing as well, is that there is enough skill and technique involved that it’s easy to set goals based on, for example, choosing and clearing a harder/faster line or riding section a little cleaner/faster/with less braking next lap.
I have had some great “test” rides and races this year, and I’m ready to see how this cyclocross season pans out. I am as ready as I will ever be. And I’m ready to PERSIST UNTIL I SUCCEED!