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Should I quit racing?

Old 04-03-19, 11:41 PM
  #51  
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I hear ya, and those are all valid points. We all have some ceiling that is dictated by both talent and time. Personally I'm excited to be able to race Masters in a couple years as I think that may offer a different perspective. Until then, I have track and MTB to keep me entertained, and I will always continue to race San Diego road events, just to support the dwindling scene out here.
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Old 04-04-19, 03:58 AM
  #52  
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Originally Posted by spectastic View Post
on top of that, I don't like the attitude of some of these roadies, thinking the world is all about them. that's probably the one thing that drives me up the wall the most, people and their egos, taking the sport too seriously, like they've got some kind of future in the world tour. nope, bye.
i hear comments like this all the time and honestly...don't get it. the friends i've made from cycling are some of the kindest most down to earth people I know who are all just trying to have fun and push ourselves. sure there's the occasional bad apple but by and large the cycling community i've surrounded myself with is made up of pretty incredible people all around.
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Old 04-04-19, 05:32 AM
  #53  
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Originally Posted by mike868y View Post
i hear comments like this all the time and honestly...don't get it. the friends i've made from cycling are some of the kindest most down to earth people I know who are all just trying to have fun and push ourselves. sure there's the occasional bad apple but by and large the cycling community i've surrounded myself with is made up of pretty incredible people all around.
I can say I've experienced both. For many years, my cycling friends were my only friends. But things change. People move, have kids, or stop riding or racing. At the same time, I've found the emergence of Zwift and Strava means we get to extend the discussion about the training ride for three days. Yay, so much fun! (I'm being sarcastic.) I don't want to only talk about rides. There is more to life than what happened on the local hammer ride.
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Old 04-04-19, 05:59 AM
  #54  
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Originally Posted by TheKillerPenguin View Post
You sound too happy and well adjusted for this sport. Take time off and start up again if/when existential dread returns.
so this is why i enjoy riding!
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Old 04-04-19, 06:07 AM
  #55  
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hnmm

I race so I can justify training hard. I like the training more than the racing.
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Old 04-04-19, 12:05 PM
  #56  
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Originally Posted by gsteinb View Post
hnmm

I race so I can justify training hard. I like the training more than the racing.
I think I'm getting to this place myself.
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Old 04-04-19, 12:47 PM
  #57  
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Hey it feels good being fit, and I certainly enjoy the feeling of having put in a solid training session with good performance.
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Old 04-05-19, 12:53 AM
  #58  
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Originally Posted by caloso View Post
I think I'm getting to this place myself.
Yeah same...
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Old 04-05-19, 02:23 PM
  #59  
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Originally Posted by spectastic View Post
i still find it exciting. i just don't see the rewards to be very worthwhile anymore, especially racing p/1/2. you have to sacrifice quite a lot to be able to hang with guys who more or less do it for a living. I've been doing more gravel events, and find those pretty fun. But overall, I've realized that I enjoy riding my bike and being fit more than paying hundreds of dollars and dedicating several months of preparation for a few events. I'm sure i'll be doing more USAC events in the future, maybe next year. but not this year. I need to figure some things out.

Yeah... just to hang. To be competitive you need genes. I think that's one of the things... like if I thought there was a good chance that I could do everything absolutely perfect for a season and be competitive it would be an easy choice. Do it. Did you ever get cat 1? Your sig says 31/35 and that's way too close to call it quits.


Originally Posted by spectastic View Post
as for being boring and ridiculous, that has more to do with seeing the same people, having the same conversations after the races, doing the same poses. it's gotten old for me. on top of that, I don't like the attitude of some of these roadies, thinking the world is all about them. that's probably the one thing that drives me up the wall the most, people and their egos, taking the sport too seriously, like they've got some kind of future in the world tour. nope, bye.

Yeah I understand. I mean, most of the guys are pretty friendly actually, but it seems there's absolutely zero way to connect with any of them lol. Unless I wanna talk about more bike racing, which is fine for a while but not enough to actually make friends over.


Originally Posted by mike868y View Post
i hear comments like this all the time and honestly...don't get it. the friends i've made from cycling are some of the kindest most down to earth people I know who are all just trying to have fun and push ourselves. sure there's the occasional bad apple but by and large the cycling community i've surrounded myself with is made up of pretty incredible people all around.

Originally Posted by topflightpro View Post
I can say I've experienced both. For many years, my cycling friends were my only friends. But things change. People move, have kids, or stop riding or racing. At the same time, I've found the emergence of Zwift and Strava means we get to extend the discussion about the training ride for three days. Yay, so much fun! (I'm being sarcastic.) I don't want to only talk about rides. There is more to life than what happened on the local hammer ride.

Again, I'd probably not feel like quitting so much if I could make friends with racing cyclists like you guys. I mean it is likely me, I have hard time making friends, in part perhaps cuz I grew up with 5 brothers and so no one ever really feels like a friend when you are used to talking about everything til 4 am with people lol. Yeah, talking racing and training can be fun, it's still fun, but I can talk one topic til I'm blue in the face but not really feel a connection with the person the next day, ya know? Hobbies and goal-oriented activities are very personal for me I think. Individual-oriented and directed. Even on a team, the goal of getting the team the win still feels like a very personal goal. I feel like to really connect with anyone we hang out, no goals, nowhere to be, just shooting **** for a while. Idk, just rambling.
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Old 04-05-19, 02:44 PM
  #60  
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Originally Posted by topflightpro View Post
I can say I've experienced both. For many years, my cycling friends were my only friends. But things change. People move, have kids, or stop riding or racing. At the same time, I've found the emergence of Zwift and Strava means we get to extend the discussion about the training ride for three days. Yay, so much fun! (I'm being sarcastic.) I don't want to only talk about rides. There is more to life than what happened on the local hammer ride.
I relate to this.
------------------
aaron, my best friends are from cycling. but like flight says, there are more things to life than racing. there's more to riding than just racing too. I can't remember anytime during racing season where I just went out for a ride, and not worry about which zone I was going to do.

---------------------------
as for getting to cat 1, there's always that option later on. and honestly, I don't look forward to being pack filler unless I'm striving to help a team win. it bewilders me how many people go to races for the sake of racing, and they're happy paying hundreds of dollars for a few quick shows that really, few people really watch. Sure there's the status of being an almost-pro cyclist. But unless you're trying to impress other cyclists, nobody actually cares. and if you need those external validations to feel happy about yourself, something else is wrong.

as a cat 2, you already have the opportunity to compete against the best of the best, unless you have the ego to rub shoulders with elevate, uhc, hincapie, etc in the p/1 (good ****ing luck man). other those aforementioned reasons I don't really see a good reason to be cat 1.

Last edited by spectastic; 04-05-19 at 03:03 PM.
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Old 04-05-19, 02:50 PM
  #61  
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you're not quitting. you're taking a break. people come back after weeks, months, even years.
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Old 04-05-19, 04:51 PM
  #62  
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Eventually, (most) every individual will plateau in regards to their abilities and become "pack filler" effectively. I think you need to get to this point before you realize if you actually like this sport or not. Everyone has fun winning, but that only lasts for so long.

The team tactics and participation thing is big @spectastic, especially for longevity, given that we all top out at some point with our limited time and talent. This is another reason why I look forward to Master's racing. In SoCal the masters are fit, fast, well organized and race effectively together. Even the "average joes" without national champ bands and pro-level experience find ways to use their strengths effectively and make a difference for the team. Way more than I see at the Cat 2 - 5 level.

Having said that, the participation and teamwork that happens with SDBC is also a bit of an anomaly. Were not quite as effective as the Masters racers, but that's also because were newbs (relatively) - even me with 12 years of racing experience.
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Old 04-05-19, 05:01 PM
  #63  
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Originally Posted by spectastic View Post

as a cat 2, you already have the opportunity to compete against the best of the best, unless you have the ego to rub shoulders with elevate, uhc, hincapie, etc in the p/1 (good ****ing luck man). other those aforementioned reasons I don't really see a good reason to be cat 1.
You're continually podiuming p/1/2 races as a 2...

Around here we typically have to travel to race with pros, though once in the while a ringer will show up, like the ex-pro/should-be current pro who won the Redlands stage at Oak Glen and yesterday won Stage 1 of Joe Martin who also won all three races in the local omnium two weekends ago.
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Old 04-05-19, 05:17 PM
  #64  
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Originally Posted by spectastic View Post
as for getting to cat 1, there's always that option later on. and honestly, I don't look forward to being pack filler unless I'm striving to help a team win. it bewilders me how many people go to races for the sake of racing, and they're happy paying hundreds of dollars for a few quick shows that really, few people really watch. Sure there's the status of being an almost-pro cyclist. But unless you're trying to impress other cyclists, nobody actually cares. and if you need those external validations to feel happy about yourself, something else is wrong.
There's also just doing it cuz it's fun. Thing is it takes just as much training to do that as it does to, well, if you are pack fill already, and wanna just do it for fun, then you gotta stay just as fast and train just as hard. I tried being lazier about training cuz I was pack fill anyway, and lo and behold I just sucked lol. So I guess is the fun of racing and being a factor but never able to get results worth all the training and like you said checking your zones every time you go ride?

I'm having fun in the gym even though the gym is really nothing but numbers. So I started training on the bike again, and riding to the numbers are annoying on a bike. I think the real difference is pushing to the absolute limit at the gym doesn't take any special mental effort. It takes a bit, sure, but nothing close to even a single VO2 interval. At the gym I can pick a number and if it's too hard it's too hard for a couple seconds and then it's over no big deal, no mental battles, no physical torture. On a bike if the number is too high I push and struggle and torture myself for approximately an eternity and have a loooong time to debate life choices and how much the workout sucks lol.

TLDR, bike racing is hard. In case y'all didn't know
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Old 04-05-19, 05:35 PM
  #65  
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I guess it also helps if you like to train!
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Old 04-05-19, 06:20 PM
  #66  
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Originally Posted by TMonk View Post
I guess it also helps if you like to train!
Like to train meaning the feeling of accomplishment afterwards? Or the feeling that each pedal stroke squeezes out another tear while you watch the seconds tick by and tell yourself it's only 167 more seconds but you know full well it will feel like 900? I mean no one can possibly LIKE that, right? Like... It's actual physical pain...

I mean, I've done it many many times, so I guess I must like it in some roundabout way, or trick myself into thinking it'll be ok just long enough to set it in motion.

But really I think I only ever go hard in hopes of getting faster, or cuz the climb is taking forever and I just want it to be over lol

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Old 04-06-19, 12:18 AM
  #67  
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Originally Posted by rubiksoval View Post
You're continually podiuming p/1/2 races as a 2...

Around here we typically have to travel to race with pros, though once in the while a ringer will show up, like the ex-pro/should-be current pro who won the Redlands stage at Oak Glen and yesterday won Stage 1 of Joe Martin who also won all three races in the local omnium two weekends ago.
the "p/1/2" races where I podiumed weren't real p/1/2 races
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Old 04-06-19, 05:11 AM
  #68  
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Originally Posted by spectastic View Post
the "p/1/2" races where I podiumed weren't real p/1/2 races
Eh, that's probably how it is in most parts of the country outside of the big hotbeds.

Can only race who shows up.
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Old 04-06-19, 05:12 AM
  #69  
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Originally Posted by aaronmcd View Post
On a bike if the number is too high I push and struggle and torture myself for approximately an eternity and have a loooong time to debate life choices and how much the workout sucks lol.
Ha! That totally nails it. Well put.

I feel that way sometimes in races, too. Plus races have the drive home that makes things even worse.
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Old 04-06-19, 05:26 AM
  #70  
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A couple more thoughts.

You could also downgrade to a 3. You were having fun then. Nothing wrong with going back to where you were having fun.

And are you following a training plan? It seems like you've always sort of trained haphazardly without a real plan. Maybe a more focused plan with established goals would make things less miserable?

Lastly, I'll reiterate this point, you don't have to race, and you don't have to race road bikes. There are other disciplines that you might enjoy more. Track's been mentioned a few times - that would certainly fit with your lifting. I'm currently in the gym every other day. (Sometimes I'm on the bike on those days too, and in-between days.) Or, if the community and camaraderie is what you're after, maybe find more social road rides or try gravel or mtb, which I've found to be more relaxed.
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Old 04-06-19, 07:21 AM
  #71  
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Originally Posted by aaronmcd View Post
Like to train meaning the feeling of accomplishment afterwards? Or the feeling that each pedal stroke squeezes out another tear while you watch the seconds tick by and tell yourself it's only 167 more seconds but you know full well it will feel like 900? I mean no one can possibly LIKE that, right? Like... It's actual physical pain...
I like the overall arc of training, being ready for whatever Iím getting ready for.

But I also like the actual interval work too- a workout that is so hard that you have to completely focus on that exact moment and the ones immediately surrounding it. I like starting my day with the challenge of trying to do something that Iím only *probably* physically capable of. Getting my brain to buy into it. The endorphin rush. Sore legs. Etc.

I like all that enough that I put races on my schedule to give shape to the training. I guess I race to train, rather than train to race.
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Old 04-09-19, 12:44 AM
  #72  
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why not just train for fun? makes life considerably simpler
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Old 04-09-19, 10:22 AM
  #73  
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Many of us don't have the talent to just have to fun and be competitive. While I enjoy training, I'd much rather veg out at zone 1 either solo or with a group.

Some do have that, they're the lucky ones. At my old job we used to have a relay running team for a yearly event (Baker to Vegas). Our team used to train for six months up the event and I used to put in about 20-40 miles a week running. My coworker would maybe to 2-3 runs during that time and still be faster than most of us. Similarly, you look at some of the guys that beat you in a race and eStalk them on strava and find they're doing less that 5 hours is mildly frustrating (and that they're 30 years younger, but that's on me for being old af).
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Old 04-09-19, 03:54 PM
  #74  
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Originally Posted by spectastic View Post
why not just train for fun? makes life considerably simpler
Oh god. I can think of 543 things more fun than just riding around on my bike, much less subjecting myself to the torture that training brings. Sitting on my couch is more fun than that.

Training in preparation for a a good crit, though...all worth it.
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Old 04-09-19, 08:47 PM
  #75  
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Originally Posted by topflightpro View Post
A couple more thoughts.

You could also downgrade to a 3. You were having fun then. Nothing wrong with going back to where you were having fun.

And are you following a training plan? It seems like you've always sort of trained haphazardly without a real plan. Maybe a more focused plan with established goals would make things less miserable?

Lastly, I'll reiterate this point, you don't have to race, and you don't have to race road bikes. There are other disciplines that you might enjoy more. Track's been mentioned a few times - that would certainly fit with your lifting. I'm currently in the gym every other day. (Sometimes I'm on the bike on those days too, and in-between days.) Or, if the community and camaraderie is what you're after, maybe find more social road rides or try gravel or mtb, which I've found to be more relaxed.
Oh I've debated the downgrade. But then I'd probably just make it my mission to upgrade again lol. Too competitive if given the opportunity.

The training plan thing is complicated. I've done different things every year. Most of them had intervals, rest days, rest weeks. I never was able to "peak" though. Too busy keeping fitness all year. Never got a coach though, nor created more than a couple months plan at once. Aerobic stuff is really weird in that everything seems to lag (I was whining about in the training status thread last week when I was due for recovery week and did that huge ride and felt like ***** for 10 days).
Heart rate data might help with that but I really hate all the putzing with equipment already and would not deal with it well. I already hate that I have to put on a ridiculous looking skin tight uniform in like 12 steps.
I do think a good training plan could help, but I don't think I could trust a coach to know my particular issues. I've had too many people tell me too many dumb things. I mean most of the internet said getting 160mm cranks was a scam/fad and/or stupid and after I got them they were the best thing ever and I was mad I didn't listen to my own rational thinking and do it years ago.

I did totally eff up my training the past year as I mentioned in an effort to not put so much effort into it. Too many late night beer rides (IOW hanging with friends) wreaking havoc on recovery. Throws off workout plans for the next morning also. Which comes back to the thing about aerobic work lagging. You don't feel the recovery happening. I think the gym actually helps me with recovery cuz it's so in-my-face about it. I get tired and I've even napped mid day on the weekend. The legs feel thrashed the day after deadlifts and I ride at ~40 watts.

The casual ride I did on Sunday after recovery week-and-a-half was like I had a motor in my legs. Threshold effort was up 50 watts from pre-recovery week. Still super low, but interesting to notice how a day of rest in the gym is like a whole week of rest on a bike.

Originally Posted by spectastic View Post
why not just train for fun? makes life considerably simpler
I would probably not train if I had zero plans on racing. I'm training now I guess, but it's more of an experiment. See where I get. If I don't get somewhere good I don't need to race.

Originally Posted by furiousferret View Post
Many of us don't have the talent to just have to fun and be competitive. While I enjoy training, I'd much rather veg out at zone 1 either solo or with a group.
Vegging in zone 1 is nice. Riding hard is nice when I'm rested, and as long as I stop when it's not nice anymore. Being fit makes riding at 200 or 250 watts a lot easier than it is after 6 months of not riding, which is also nice.
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