I betrayed randonneuring

December 3, 2013

So, I’ve not posted in quite some time.

First things first: as much as it pains me to say this, I let November in my aspirational P-12 streak go by without a successful ride; AND, I am taking a short hiatus from randonneuring.

Following are some excerpts from an email I sent to Sensei Ron A, my friend, mentor, and RUSA route owner, forming the outline of my mea culpa.

I think that taking a small break from randoing is the right thing for me at this point, and I don’t regret THAT, but I do regret my own failings which led up to it…I’m quite convicted that I betrayed both myself and randoing itself…

Basically, not long after RAGBRAI my old fitness-related demons started really plaguing me. I was somewhat aware of it at the time, in stretches, but looking back it’s fairly clear. My bike-related fitness was getting worse, and worse, and worse. Riding the bike began to feel like a chore. Randoing often seemed almost impossibly difficult, which accounts for [my struggles with rando rides since then].

[Most succinctly], I betrayed first myself, through allowing my fitness to decline and decline and decline, and then I betrayed randoing, by continuing to do it when I had no business doing it, and failing quite a lot along the way. Ultimately you, too, were let down [by my inconsistency]…I can say that *I* am somewhat offended by my flippant approach to [randoing during this time].

So, there you have it.

I’ve cooked up basically a multi-month plan. The first few months are going to see me stay off the rando road for now, focusing ONLY and INTENTLY on losing weight. Eating good & healthy, going to gym or other workout 4-5 days a week (both of which are underway and have been underway), and taking only shorter (12-25 mile) bike rides, for fun and for weight loss.

Following this, and once I’ve accomplished a key body weight goal, I enter phase II of the return: continuing to eat healthy (obviously), I take the focus less off of gym/working out – reducing this to 2 or at most 3 times per week – and put the focus more on riding the bike. Longer and more frequent rides, building up to closer to rando distances. I do this for a period of a few weeks, a month, or so.

FINALLY, with both of those things done, now I’m at a point where I’ve gotten much closer to my ideal body weight, I’m in good shape and much stronger than now, and my base mileage rides are under me preparing me for endurance riding – THEN I return, with vigor, to randoing. No divided attention with poor eating habits and/or trying to lose weight. THEN I resume where I left off.

Life, as Jethro Tull said, is a long song. It’s a phrase that’s been in my head often the past couple weeks as I wrestled with this situation. I regret several aspects of this situation – but as Sensei Ron has often reminded me, “That’s in the past. It’s over.” No gains can come now from just regretting it. Now’s the time to work hard to right the ship, and that’s exactly what I’m going to do.

I’ll still continue to ride the bike, as mentioned, and I still love cycling, so this blog will continue apace. Only distinction is, reduced randonneuring-related content for a little while. But count on this: I’ll be back 🙂


One Response to “I betrayed randonneuring”

  1. Jim Bangs said

    Good for you Bill!
    You have a plan and sounds like you are following it.
    Be happy with your plan and goals!

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