Lately I have been struggling with an addiction which is slowly taking over my thoughts, free time, and wallet. It started out like any other fun seeking adventure. Something to experiment with and expand my experiences of the world.
Such innocence and naivety.
It has slowly transformed itself into a continuous struggle for more. For a bigger hit. Increased wattage per pedal stroke. Faster sections even in the face of a strong head wind. Aerodynamic advantages; tighter jerseys, a more stretched out position. Nutritional improvements; 5 bananas per day, porridge and honey for breakfast. Don't you dare inflict lipidemia on me with saturated fats, I need those red blood cells!
It's gotten so bad I'm reading medical research!
This is before I even get to the stress it is causing financially. Taking out loans from local drug dealers to shed 10g from the bike frame, cashing in my pension for a new set of rounder wheels.
Pumping my tires above the recommended pressure for less rolling resistance. There is nothing I am not willing to do, no risk too great for a better VAM.
Not to mention the hours spent on YouTube checking out Cavendish's draughting technique, Froome's cadence, and Peter Sagan's descending skills. I've stopped surfing the web in search of entertainment, now I seek pure information. I've installed Adblocker so there are less distractions!
As the need for time on the bike grows, I am becoming more focussed, almost obsessive. Every event is measured in how many kilometres I could have cycled instead. Dinner with a friend, 45km, throw in coffee and dessert, 58km. A business meeting, 83km, and if someone opens power point slides I can feel my max VO2 level going into free fall. I can't afford to be losing so many kilometres, allowing my iron levels to drop like this!
Let me just stop you right there. No matter what you say, this is what I am thinking: Campagnolo groupset.*
Le Flamme Rouge
Why am I buying rounder wheels, stiffer frames, filling myself up with the best food to perch myself on my bike in the most aerodynamic position possible? Why am I measuring everything in average kilometres per hour at 95% FTP?
The reality is I don't need anything else. Just higher cadence, better wattage, more glycogen. Nothing else matters.
Oh, except Strava section PBs.
* Actually, I don't have a Campagnolo groupset, but it sounds nicer than Shimano 105 compact with an 11-32 cassette.