Sunday, October 17, 2010

Emotional Rescue: Barriers - Updated

You may ask yourself am I right, am I wrong? You may ask yourself what kind of  self-help race is this? Has my cyclocross become unmanageable? Is bike racing cheaper than therapy? Knowing that it takes perseverance to complete a race, and that you may face:
  • Emotional Barriers - Do I feel like racing?
  • Perceptual Barriers - Is it cold outside?
  • Cultural Barriers  - Are the guys from Albany mean, do they use foil?
  • Language Barriers - What the hell is a bell lap?
  • Interpersonal Barriers - Will my significant other let me race?
  • Gender Barriers - Will I get beaten by a girl?
These are various types of barriers that people hold dear to them. They simplify, give them an easy out. But wait there's more! A cyclocross race holds a final and sometimes most damaging; the Physical Barriers.

On a good day, one comes gently winding around a 180 degree turn, butt in the air, like a cat in heat, flitting off the bike for a brisk stroll over the boards, back up and away.
On a bad day, its 35 degrees, there's a 50 yard straightaway after the holeshot turn into a set of structural lumber coming towards you at 25 mph. Since the start is kinda like Han Solo dropping the hyperspace hammer, the barrier approach is like reentry when Alderaan has been reduced to space gravel. Which you might resemble in a matter of seconds because you can't feel your hands and you're pretty sure the brakes won't work anyway because of the constant drizzle and frost on the greens.

What could be worse that approaching 40cm of tibia-snapping new-growth at speed? How about boards that remind you in that last instant as you try to click out and leap of the imminent consequences? Think twice? Do you have that much time?
Warning: Barriers may be larger than they appear.
At SpaCx, this is a barrier that you will have to overcome. Then again. And again. Probably like eight times. Which is what they say is the base number of repetitions required before something becomes habitual. Don't try to break through these barriers, just get over them.

I will be your knight in shining armor, riding across the desert on a fine Arab charger...

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