Friday, March 12, 2010

Panache

The last three weeks have been full of training, travel and amazing skiing up in Canaan. After that amazing Wednesday I spoke of so fondly in my last post, I was back at the push-pull effort of cranking up my training efforts on the bicycle again. I came back from Canaan with a sense of closure with the ski-season and felt like I was able to satiate that itch that tends to have me torn and resentful towards riding when the snow beckons elsewhere. I think I got it right this time and I feel like I'm on the half-full side of motivation to race my bicycle with my own proprietary blend of "NickcantWaite" panache.

The Kenda Pro Cycling camp down in Macon Georgia last week was a much needed reminder, for me, of the capacity for a group to mesh amidst a sport that can turn people off from it almost as quickly as it can turn them on to it. The group's collective theme is aggression and tenaciousness. If those two themes hold true throughout the second-year-pro team's season, it'll be be good and we may all be invited back.

The daily routine was stage race-esque with rides leaving at 9:30 every morning, on-bike lunch, massage, meetings and bike-fits in the evening along with plenty of time to toil the warmer hours of the day away in our rooms recovering from the day's exploits - a luxury the rock star mechanics did not have while they built 60 custom Masi's with exacting precision. Everyone on the team received the customary bags with our names embroidered on them and exploding with new and shiny gear with a subtle formaldehyde scent to remind you that the season has not yet begun. For team-cohesion we rode our bikes for 3-6 hours everyday - a given, but the real bonding occurred over unthinkably large beers at the Mexican joint across the street from the hotel. Those eight days are over and one 14hr travel day later I was meeting the Harrisonburg crew at Mr. J's Bagel shop for a 5 hour not so mellow ride in the mountains of VA. and WV.

A week well done, leaving only another 3 weeks or so to preen the feathers before my first race with the team.

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