Training for RAAM is in full swing. I am following the same training plan that I used for solo RAAM in 2007. I just finished the first month of the eight month plan and it’s starting off well. My average speed was more than 1 mph faster than the same period in 2007.
On Sunday I had a 9 hour, 160 mile ride on my schedule, so I rode up to the White Mountains, climbed the Kank, then turned around and descended back to Lincoln. I then rode up Gonzo’s Pass.
With 6 hours completed, I descended Gonzo’s and was looking forward to heading south and home. The last 50 miles of this loop is usually pretty speedy, partially because of the terrain and partially because I can see the barn door. Unfortunately, as I turned south, I was met by a steady head wind. It was clear, that the last 50 miles of this ride, were not going to be easy miles.
I pushed into the wind and soon my mind turned to the leftover lasagna waiting for me at home. I could almost taste the spicy sausage my wife uses to give her lasagna that extra bite. As the wind pushed me back, I kept spinning my legs, thinking about that lasagna. Finally, I defeated the wind and made it home to my reward.
On Sunday I rode for lasagna, but in June I will ride for a bigger cause. I am racing RAAM, raising money for Camp Odayin, a residential camp for children with heart disease, and for Special Olympics, NH. Many of you know that our son Noah was born with a brain injury. We have experienced firsthand how Special Olympics helps to develop improved physical fitness and motor skills, greater self-confidence and a more positive self-image. Their athletes' oath "Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt." carries a lesson we all can learn from.
So that is my first blog entry as I prepare for RAAM 2011. I hope you will come back and follow along as I prepare for another Race Across America.