Thursday, June 19, 2014

Sometimes doing the things that you suck at requires more mental fortitude than anything else

My weakness with cycling is climbing. Which is funny because I seem to be pretty good at climbing….. ROCKS, just not hills on bikes. I suck in ways you wouldn’t think possible. I’d be awesome at bike racing if all routes were flat or downhills but that just ain’t possible.

Last night I did hill repeats just like I’ve been trying to get in twice a week. It hasn’t always been working out that way due to torrential thunderstorms and feeling sick the past couple weeks.

I don’t love these workouts in fact I really hate them.
Last night was no exception. It was a slow night on Sydenham. Usually any night of the week there are cyclist doing repeats like gangbusters. Its one of the gnarliest hills we have in our area and people come from all over to climb it. I only saw a small handful this time.
Before the first hill my BG was 4.1mmol/l (74mg/dl). I ate two shot blocks.
By the first hill I was trying to devise a way to cut my workout short. I’ll admit, I kinda hoped a low blood sugar would send me home. Stupid right?
By the second hill I conceded with myself that I would do at least 4 reps when I usually do 6. There is no rhyme or reason as to why I choose 6. 6 is my favourite number and it’s an even number. I won’t do odd number intervals. 6 always seems to work out to about an hour and 45 minutes round trip from home so that’s good for me.
By the third hill I tested 5.7mmol/l (103mg/dl) at the top. I really really didn’t want to climb hills anymore. I told myself “just one more and go home.” It was looking like it would rain. I wanted to get home and hang out with Ryan. By this point I was just looking for excuses.
Since the 4th hill was supposed to be my last I powered up it hard. Then I felt supremely nauseated so when I got to the bottom I forced myself to do another to push my limits with the nausea. I thought it would help my stomach calm down. It was a super easy slow climb. 
It started to rain.
Well by that point I had done 5 reps. As I mentioned, I hate doing things in intervals of odd numbers so I had no choice. I had to do another. It was a 20-25min ride home so there was no avoiding of the rain at this point.
Well lookie here….. 6 reps. Through the power of mental fortitude I ended up completing the goal which I set out for myself. Even though my last two hill climbs were at a sickeningly slow pace, I still did it.
I rode home feeling much better for not crapping out early “just because I didn’t want to do it.”


  1. Scully, this is inspirational. Congrats on staying with it and powering through.

  2. Nicely done for toughing through it when you didn't want to.

    I do this kind of bargaining more often than I'd like to admit at the pool. Usually, I end up telling myself "Just one more..." often enough that I end up doing my full workout. Staying in the moment rather than thinking about all of the sets to come helps, too.


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