Saturday, January 17, 2009

"I'm going nowhere, baby!"

There is something truly awful about riding the trainer.  I think it is the stationary part, the not going anywhere that heightens the torture of riding indoors.  We started the Saturday morning trainer rides at the shop today due to the fact that it was waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too cold to even think about riding outside.  Charles the Taller and Peter met me at the shop at 10am and we started setting up.  I brought the trainer and the rollers, just in case somebody showed up without a trainer.   Charles and Peter got started, I turned up the AC/DC and we got underway.
I decided to ride the rollers.  I don't know why, but the rollers seem like the lesser of two evils to me.  I guess it is the constant concentration to avoid the imminent doom that lurks at the edges of the spinning drums that keeps the mind occupied enough to not dwell on the stationary part of the indoor riding session.  The key to riding rollers (I think) is to be in a relaxed state of concentration.  Relax to much and the bike is zigging all over the place.  Tighten up on the bars too much and you are zagging like there is no tomorrow.  Hit things just right and it is almost like being on the road.
You have probably heard the war stories about trainer crashes or been scared witless when you realized how close to the edge your wheel was.  I have honestly never had a bad incident on the rollers, but then again I don't try to ride no hands or fart around like I'm Joe Pro, either.  Rollers are to be viewed as being a quiet kind of cool.  It is cool to ride rollers well, but it is not cool to break them out at your local crit and show off your no hands-back stretching-while riding rollers technique.  However, it is cool to show how good you are on the rollers when warming up at the velodrome, but you better bring your A game to even warrant a glimpse in your direction as there are some serious bike riding skills going on in the fixed gear set.
With all of that out in the open, I managed a 45-50 minute ride on my Roubaix rollers (the drums are really lumpy so it is sort of like riding on a very bumpy road).  Peter kept breaking out the one legged drills on the trainer, swearing up and down that they made time go by faster.  Sure.  Charles sweated along and aptly reminded us that suffering now was the best preparation for the season.  It's funny that we suffer now so that we can suffer more once the weather is warm.  Seems perverse to train by suffering in order to compete at suffering.  Oh well, no one ever promised that life would be logical.
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