Saturday, January 5, 2008

Bicycling Existentialism (aka goal-setting) (20070701)

Ok, so what the heck am I doing here?

Let's be frank, I spend quite a bit of time on the bike, and I better be
getting some value out of it when you consider the amount life energy I
pour in to it.

Why am I bringing this up now? Because I just met all of my goals as a
category 4 cyclist, and accumulated enough points that I am forced to
move up into the significantly harder category 3.

For a goal-oriented person like me that means that I need to figure out
what I like about being a cyclist, and what I want to do in the 3s so
that I enjoy it.

After much introspection (just to make sure), I decided these things:

1) While I like personal success (winning races etc) what I really like
is doing better than I expect. That's a subtle difference, but it's all
about setting the bar low and over-achieving, see . If I set a goal of
placing top 20, and get 19th, I'm the king in my own mind. If I set a
goal of winning, and getting second, ennui ensues.

2) While exceeding low barriers is nice, I do want to progress and push
my personal limits closer to whatever ultimate maximum fitness I have in me

3) I love, and I mean really love, riding with and working for the
success of solid, nice teammates. Luckily I have a bunch of really nice
teammates, several of whom are very solid performers. Cycling has more
than it's share of, how should I say it...really aggressive types. But
my teammates really are nice guys. I want to to see them do well and
help them if possible.

So there it is. I've got a new category. And given where I find joy in
the competitive part of cycling, I'm shooting for a top-10, then a
top-5, personally, and hopefully if I can I will make it in to the
winning breakaway at some point, even if I come in last out of my
breakmates. On a team level, I want to do whatever I can help the team
as a whole grow and prosper, and I want to do whatever I can for my
fellow category 3 racers so that they get good results. If I do a good
job, next spring I'll have some chips to call in for my own personal goals.

So that's it, we'll see how it goes...

No comments: