Monday, April 19, 2010
For those of you not aware, I am currently training to do my fifth century bike ride with Team in Training. TNT is part of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. It trains non-athletes to succeed in marathons, triathlons, and centuries. I've done programs in both New York & San Diego and the differences in the programs are about as broad as the differences in the people who choose to live one place versus the other (for the record, I should probably still be living in NYC, given my personality).
In New York, as I was huffing and puffing and contemplating vomiting, my coach once said, "This must be an orgasmic experience for you, because it sounds like a porn movie back there." In San Diego, they pat you on the back and ask if everything is all right and should they call SAG (support & gear) to come pick you up.
In New York, the coach screams, "Don't get off the f#*!ing bike! Don't get off the f#*!ing bike! You are dead if you get off the f#*!ing bike!" when a participant decides the hill is too steep. In San Diego, I sing "The wheels on the bike go round and round, round and round..." to distract the participants from the 8-10% grade of the hill.
Two weeks ago I was SAG'd at fifty miles because things were moving in my knee that just did not feel right. A week later, I was sick and couldn't ride. This past week, i was SAG'd at 51 miles because I was cramping so bad I was yelling out in pain. The lesson, for me, is that you can't be half-assed about this. In New York, I stretched and did yoga. Here I have done some stretching and some PT for the knee and back, but in the end, none of it compares to the long hours of yoga and stretching I used to put in. So I guess it's time to get serious and do a LOT more stretching. Yoga, alas, has been elusive. There just aren't any local classes that I've seen or tried that have the same effect for me. But I did buy a foam roller and started using that. If I'd said, "I did buy a torture device and started using that," it would also be a correct statement. I wonder if you ever get used to using a foam roller to the degree that it no longer makes you grunt and groan in pain....
So, all this said, I am still seeking donations to support my efforts with TNT and, frankly, I think I'm earning them. Maybe not with blood, but certainly with sweat and, at the rate I'm going, soon with tears. I've made an offer on my website at www.zackcompany.com that allows authors to bypass the query process and just send along their sample chapter and synopsis for immediate consideration, in exchange for a donation, of course. I am also offering folks who have submitted sample chapters but not heard back yet the opportunity to get their material read sooner in exchange for a donation. These donations are made directly to LLS and my firm receives no income from them. As they are made to LLS, they are 100% tax deductible. I hope you will take advantage of them.
Or, of course, you could just donate for the warm and fuzzy feeling it will give you to help out a good cause. Just click here: http://pages.teamintraining.org/sd/ambbr10/azacka.
Thanks. For your own training, I'm including some links that might help.
Posted by Andrew Zack at 9:59 AM