Friday, May 31, 2013

Becoming "That Guy"

As I was out on my recovery ride today, I thought through my current stance on group rides.  And then suddenly it dawned on me that I could be turning into "that guy".  The Group Ride Nazi.  The one who consistently complains that someone is doing something wrong and thereby disrupting what could have been the most perfect rotating pace line group ride in the world. 

Nooooo.  I did not want that to happen, but it is happening.  This was later confirmed by an off hand but sincere comment from my friend Dave while I was at a local bike shop.  What he said was spot on.  It doesn't matter what was said, in fact I can't remember exactly what he said.  What matters is that the light bulb went off in my head.  I realized that I need to chill out a bit and enjoy the ride. 

My high expectation and search for perfection can become detrimental and cause me to chase the ideal rather than accept the reality. 

So now what?  Keep it rolling.  Ride with whatever group I need to ride with, but do it for the right reasons.  My hope is to have a group ride that works together, pushes the pace some but also holds up 10 seconds over the steeper climbs so the ones who are off the back can latch on and draft through the flats.  I want to encourage those who rarely pull, to stop wheel sucking and get on the front.  There are riders who feel like they don't have enough experience to pull, but definitely have the strength.  I want to encourage them to go for it.  They belong here and they have the right to share the load. 

I want to help first, second, timers and beyond to learn proper group riding etiquette.  I want to ride with a group of strong and fit folks, who with a bit of guidance would create a possibly formidable Team Time Trial rotating pace line. 

I definitely want to mix it up and push my limits as well. 

Ideal?  Maybe, so maybe I'll take it down a notch or two and chill for a bit.  Let my controlling tendencies go and turn the energy towards just being part of the group..... and maybe put in an attack once in a while.

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