Old Friends, Old Allies

I just had lunch with Ian, caught up with Eloy in the park a couple of days ago, and chatted via e-mail with JP. One thing is for sure: my recent placing in a Prospect Park race made a lot of Kissena riders here in NYC remember me, from the one season I spent with the team in 2003. It's always great to know I have friends out there, as well as more blog readers!

So, where exactly do I stand with competitive bicycling? In 2003, I was a promising junior who was unsure of himself, stressed with school, and soundly trounced by the other promising juniors in an August race. Since then, I went to MIT, joined the crew team, gained 45 lbs, experienced real burnout, quit the crew team, took a year off, did an 1100 mile tour, did some collegiate races, biked across the country, joined the crew team again, quit it again almost a year later, lost those pesky 45 lbs, and started riding faster. I've done a few races this year. Bear Mountain will be my last race of the Spring season. After that, I'll do my 230-mile day ride to Boston, ride across the country again, and resume studies at MIT.

I currently train about 10-15 hours a week. My power and heart rate numbers are consistent with what one might expect for a strong, but by no means elite, 22 year old rider. The question is, do I have what it takes to be elite? Do I have the genetics, as well as the time, the money, the support, and the motivation? I don't know. I'm starting to suspect the answer is yes, since I'm having so much fun with this. Of course, the competition is stiff, and I just don't know what awaits. Where will I be in five years, or ten years?

So, to the folks on Team Kissena: I'd love to keep in touch, maybe even grab lunch, just drop me a line whenever. I'm in town until June 6th, then it's north, then west, then MIT, then hopefully west.