The Un-Fun Part

The Un-Fun Part

With the realization that I’m now committed to train for a hundred mile race…uphill, I have to focus on things that don’t suit me. Things like a training schedule. Things like nutrition. Things like sleep. Things like exercise that isn’t exciting. I have to do this or I won’t succeed. I won’t be fit enough and mentally tough enough to get there.

This sinking mood that has taken over is more about the lack of gains I’m seeing. When I first started mountain biking, it was hard but it got to a fun spot. I really did look forward to rides, even though I knew some of the climbs would hurt and some of the descents were beyond my skill level. I really loved the art of riding dirt and being free, pushing myself to another level time and again. Every day is difficult to motivate myself.

I’ve learned that riding bike to train is a different beast. The “fun” part is sometimes when the ride is over. I have to be on a road bike most days to get the miles in needed to train. It’s so cold in the spring that I can’t last more than hour without starting to shiver. I almost need to bring a change of clothes to last longer. Riding on the trails is nearly impossible. One day it might snow, then warm to 60 degrees, leaving us with just mud and sludge to deal with. Sitting on a trainer indoors, is maddening. I haven’t seen a tv show or read a book yet, that can keep my ass there for more than 90 minutes.

Here is where I’m trying to get creative. I break up workouts into segments. I will row for 15 minutes, run for 30 minutes, lift weights for 30 minutes, then bike for 20 minutes. The total goal is to make sure that I can withstand 6 plus hours of exercise straight and then 6 hours of mental ping pong by mid July. I’m at 3 hours.. and it’s slow. Some Days I can just take my brain out of the game and let my body do it’s thing.

All of this preparation is there help me drop the pounds. I would say my body is very average. If you took 100 women and put them shoulder to shoulder, I would be number 50 for sure. I’m not as lean and pretty as some and I’m definitely above others. I sit right in the middle. No one will stop me on the street to tell me how gorgeous I am and no one will stop and point like I’m in the circus. One of the demons that I keep having to battle every day is the one that takes my genetics and my lifetime of averageness and pools it quietly into clothes. Basically I have to be lighter to climb up hills faster. I have to be lighter so my heart doesn’t have to work so hard. I have to be lighter because it’s the only way.

Now the not-so-fun part of this race to the race has really sunk in. Sometimes everything shouldn’t be easy. Sometimes the greater goal should hurt a little. Sometimes, if it’s difficult but doable, the reward tastes that much sweeter. But not sometimes, I would say most times, most times I want to quit and say just kidding. Then I pull on my chamois and my tight shapewear and go sit and spin.

Amber Frisch