I used to work two jobs. For years I cooked food and worked on bikes. This past April I simplified it to just bikes, I was burned out on the wild crazy ride of working food service and wanted to really give bike racing everything I had. It was a good summer. I rode more, rested more, and raced and raced. It was pretty damn fun. It was also hard, my income was more or less chopped in half. I did more “pay for races” than I have in years. Racing is expensive, entry fees, traveling, food, time off work, bike maintenance, it adds up quick. Basically all summer I was broke. About three days before payday I would look in my wallet and see no cash, I’d look in my bank account and see zeros there too. Every month, twice a month, I’d realize I had nothing, nothing at all. But shit it was all for the glory of racing….right?
Now it is becoming winter, so called off season for cyclists. But instead of chilling out, getting fat, maybe doing some skiing, I am chomping at the bit. Seems the bastard of late, the Tour Divide has come calling to me again. Some part of me thought it was a done deal, checked off the list and leaving me cleared to just move on. Yet there is some unfinished business out there, oh I crave it, want it and now it is embedded in my head festering. Only I want ot be smarter, better, stronger. I have had a long held desire to get after this whole bike racing thing with more focus, more science, more experience. With some help from Coach Andy, it is now it is happening.
Enter reality. I am still broke and yet my head is filled with so many bike race dreams. What’s a working guy to do. Work more!
I am picking up shifts in the kitchen. I need the money and it is easy to slide back in there and make it happen. Plus I miss cooking. Food is a wonderful way to make people happy. I like that, I like to make people happy, I really do like to cook! So I am back to working two jobs, bikes and food. Plus I am training 15-19 hours a week. Makes for a busy day some days. Today I got up at 3:AM, checked my heart rate, checked it again. Got dressed and walked the dogs. Went to work for 10 hours of mostly running in tight little circles in the kitchen. It was pretty busy and it was pretty damn fun. Rode home, ate lunch, walked the dogs again. Got suited up and rode into the wind for 12 miles and flew home into the gorgeous sunset. Still needed more spinning, so onto the trainer for more. Thank goodness for music as an hour and forty minutes becomes a long time on the road to nowhere.
Riding the trainer this evening I thought about it a lot, there are 168 hours in a week. What we do with these hours is what makes us what we are. It seems like so much time, yet it goes by so fast and those precious minutes are never where you need them. How to maximize this time, how to make a living, how to save money to race down the continental divide and somehow still spend time with my friends, play with my dogs and train the way I hope and dream of doing, is a tough recipe I don’t have figured out quite yet. The only answer I see is keep on doing it, everyday, keep the dream alive, keep focused and determination will make it happen. Today was a busy day, there are many, many more to come.