Am I a multi-day racer?

Jay Petervary won the Stagecoach 400 by riding without any sleep whatsoever for just under 50 hours. Wow! That is so amazing! His post alone made something click in my head. And then bouncing my feelings off of someone last night solidified my understanding of what I am as a multi day adventurer on a mountain bike. I don’t think I will be a good multi day racer.

I know a lot of my friends have been waiting for the day that I sign up for the Tour Divide.  And so this thought may be hard to digest but I think I know myself better then anyone.  And I know I like to live and experience. I love to travel and experience all kinds of stimulus.  But how much can you enjoy a ride if you are in a sleep deprived coma? I know, one will find a new meaning to life and understand themselves better when faced with great diversity.  But after suffering many hours then passing out and crashing to mother earth in the wee hours of the morning I have come to an understanding of my own.

I think I would make a terrible multi-day mountain bike racer. I think my limit for pure output is 24 hours and then my talents drop off dramatically.  Case in point was this last weekend. It took me two days to cover a measly 100 miles and at the 90 mark I blew up in dramatic fashion.  I have spent the last two days walking around like I just played in my first tackle football game.

Now that I am rested and going through some photographs I am realizing that I almost missed the most important part of last weekend. The beauty and diversity of mother earth. Another day on the bike and I would have been in so much delirium that I probably wouldn’t even noticed the earths greatest gifts.  When I was sitting in my truck-shelter-bivy waiting out a snow storm I asked myself why I have to make things so miserable.  Cant I just mosey down the path? Why do I have to attack it?

“What if you stopped suffering and just went at a sustainable pace? I think you would go even farther … and faster. Why suffer and slow down when you can go steady and eventually catch and beat everyone … if that is what you want. You would of not HAD to come back at Frog Hollow. You would have been way out there … given you just had started and stayed in your fun zone…”, the voice said to me on my cell phone last night.  A voice from someone that is new to big bike efforts. And it made a lot of sense.

Now that I am dabbling and wanting to enter a new genera of mountain bike efforts I have the opportunity to enjoy myself.  After all the reason I suffer so  much in my current racing world is because I have so much expectation and feel pressure to bury myself … the madness of Bill Martin … right? Why?

3 thoughts on “Am I a multi-day racer?

  1. Bill – A few things.
    – 24 hour racing is much harder then multi-day racing and I will even call it stupid now a days. going no where in circles, dah…
    – I DO NOT SUFFER, I use to suffer but have become much wiser to that.
    – I do what I do in the style I do it because I have found it is what I love and I am not suffering.
    – There are times when a sustainable pace with rest will out do the guy pushing the limits of sleep. This is for the individual to figure out.
    – I have been multi day endurance racing consistently for over 15 years, I have figured a few things out…and the most important one, again, is I do not like to suffer
    – I suggest to you to stop suffering and try a shot as well as enjoy multi day racing
    One will never know unless they go there…
    Enjoy your rides and see you at the start of Fitz-Barn!

  2. I hear ya and it backs up my point even though I have struggles getting it out there … is … to stay up for two nights without suffering is so forein to me. I actually can go balls out for a long time and feel great. My suffering occurs when I try to cut back on sleep. I remember as a kid my big goal was to stay up until the next day. Numerous attempts I waited for the sun to rise to succumb to so much physical pain and always blacked out. It wasn’t until just like 6 years ago that I finally conquered staying awake. I actually have to become physical to pull it off. There could be numerous reasons for my inability to stay awake. I do feel frustrated i cant because in the end … I want to ride … a LOT. Hey, thanks for your comments … I cant wait to ride together again.

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