Monday, November 5, 2012

Cyclocross-ically Challenged

I see myself going so much faster in a cyclocross my mind. What the hell am I doing in a sport that rewards those with a naturally high VO2 Max and plenty of fast-twitch fibers in their body? Each week I line up and hope that I can overcome these genetic shortfalls through sheer will and stubbornness… but I continue to get absolutely killed. Yet, for some sick reason, I am addicted to cyclocross.

I really am trying to suck less. Photo by Cory Bolen

I love the different parks, the social nature of a cross race, and geeking out over tire pressure. I love those few minutes at the beginning of the race when I am wheel-to-wheel with my fellow 35+ racers and jockeying for position into the first few corners. In those first few minutes hope is still alive. But even after the fast guys have snapped the elastic and are making the race at the front, there are still battles to be won or lost further back in the field.

Last Friday I tweeted that “I am going try very hard to suck a little less at cyclocross tomorrow”. However, I did not miraculously transform into Sven Nys and surprise the field on Saturday at the SICX race in Nampa, ID. I rode smooth, ran the barriers well, thought about each tricky corner, and absolutely rode as hard as I could for an hour. While I don’t think I sucked, I was not fast. My engine feels like a U-Haul rental truck that has an accelerator governor installed. I “want” to go faster. I simply can’t right now. But it is not over. (Insert Dr. Evil laugh here)

The Byrds Team is a force at any Boise cross race. Photo by Reed Cycle

Mark Schafer airs it out over the barriers. Photo by Reed Cycle

The SICX Flyover is a huge hit. Photo by Reed Cycle

Next up is a double-header with Turkey Cross presented by the Idaho Waffle Cross Series! Mmmm, waffles.


Hamilton said...

Dave, my name is not Lynda, and I really know F-All about training, but as I read your post I can't shake the reality of all the ultra endurance training you focus on most of the year. Straight up, if all you did was speed work, short duration intensity, and intervals; combined with running...both on track (sprints) and hills or sand (strength), focusing on one-hour performance blocks, not 9-12 hour(!); and raced short track or similar distance XC during the rest of the year, I imagine your cross would improve, probably a lot, regardless of your physiology. The question is, would that be as much fun? I am glad you are enjoying the cross with your performance level where it is at, that says a lot about your motivation and goals, and your satisfaction with having diversity in your cycling year, no matter how painful ;-)

Dave Byers said...

Hami - you are absolutely right that nothing I do the rest of the year prepares me for cross. At this point in my life, my ego can handle getting spanked each weekend and I enjoy the variety in my cycling season. From now on, its all about Feb 16-17 baby!