..and I mean it literally and figuratively and physically.. It's been nearly 2 months since my last contribution here, but I've become a bit overwhelmed with the amount of attention the internet requires from me. I'm now counting 8 or 9 blogs, plus 3 retail websites, a few social networking venues and of course horoscopes, news, weather, maps, five e-mail accounts, spam and youporn. Needless to say, your hero is spread pretty thin these days..
So a few hours after today's colonoscopy, my dear wife indicated with much amusement how helpless I looked in the recovery room.. that is.. high on drugs, tubes in my nose and arm, drooling on myself as I slowly regained consciousness.. and I couldn't resist asking her why she didn't right then and there take a picture and "Facebook it". Well apparently the idea did cross her mind but she refrained from exploiting my pain for your entertainment. Good girl.. It got me to thinking.. as we drove to the PTO meeting tonight- there must already be some good images of me injured or suffering that I can share.. and bingo! I remembered the self portrait I took of myself 4 years ago, in the ambulance after being hit by a car in Cranston while riding home from work. So after sending Ebru off to bed (she fell asleep while we watched our Netflix movie- "Guru") I resolved to find that picture and explain to you how, if that accident happened today I would have probably broken some bones.. At my annual physical this past Tuesday, I asked my doctor what my weigh-in was two years prior- 183.. one year ago- 173.. and two days ago.. drumroll..... 162 (fully clothed of course..) so at the time of this accident where I destroyed my helmet (I had blood coming out of my ear and I had stitches in my ear canal) I was about 25 pounds heavier, more cushioned with fat, perhaps even more muscular. I don't know how I would fare today in such a T-bone collision.. This morning I weighed in at 157, but of course this was in my birthday suit, and after an 18 hour period of liquid diet, Dulcolax and other bowel cleansing medications I was required to imbibe. I don't miss those extra 25 pounds. After disrobing for today's procedure and laying on the gurney, two nurses attended to my IV, blood pressure and oxygen.. when they took my pulse it was nice to hear them say "heartrate is 46- you are very fit!". Indeed, a big strong heart doesn't need to pump so often- it moves more blood with less work- an advantage which hopefully pays big dividends when I'm an old man. Ebru was with me in the recovery room today- and I don't remember a thing- but she says the alarm kept going off because my heart rate kept falling below 45. Sweet. If I never win another bike race ever again (I hear that stifled laughter- not cool), I still feel like I've won something priceless: more time on this planet with people who I love.. which assumes of course that a piano does not fall onto me or my plane does not crash or other unmentionable abbreviations of life do not occur to me..
I'm reaching an age where it's probably going to be hard resisting the urge to judge myself, judge my achievements, judge my health, judge my life's quality. So far I'm looking forward to the occasion, and hopefully many of the more difficult albeit correct choices I've made and hard work I've done for the past 10-20 years will continue to bear fruit. With so many blessings to count, age does not matter.
For those of you who wondered, my colonoscopy was a success- only one small polyp was found and removed.. and if/when I get my hands on a picture of it, hell yeah I'm going to Facebook it!
Thanks for reading.
Posted By Murat Altinbasak to Amerikan Turk™ at 10/14/2010 11:56:00 PM
I did a SPIN class last night, followed by a little bit of upper body work on the Nautilus machines. Noticed on my chart (still there after all this time) that the last time I lifted weights was on my birthday March 19th. So I haven’t lifted in six months and 10 days. Interesting… The good news is, I kicked the SPIN class’ ass last night. Where a week ago I was dying just to avoid falling off the bike, last night I was strong and had a good time. Tonight I’m doing Pilates again. Every Tuesday 6:30 at the Kent County Y.. I’m usually the only guy in there.. which is a good ratio for me.. some of the moves we do down on the floor would not make it onto prime time television. I credit a lot of the good racing I did in May to the lifting, Pilates and yoga I did all winter. Now I’m prepping for a better cross season using these disciplines. Let’s see if I can escape being lapped for a change!
Burn-out at work causes burn-out on the bike.
I did a spin class last night after work and basically had to fake my way through and use less resistance than I was supposed to. Couldn’t wait for it to end, because walking out would be too embarrassing.
Dear wife was just diagnosed with Lyme disease, which explains a few things. Now I wonder if I have it too somehow, though it’s not known to be contagious.
My back has been killing me for months. I’m in the care of a chiropractor. An x-ray taken a month ago showed my spine curved sideways from my tailbone up. Looks like the kind of trauma that would be caused by being hit by a car from the left. (ie July 2006 when I was hit)
I’m registered for the Mayor’s Cup but I have very little time to tune myself up. The goal is to hopefully hang in there and tail-gun it to the finish. I have to try, no matter what.
Maybe skipping the racing this weekend and a couple of long zone rides followed by good food and quality rest will get me out of this rut. Good 4-5 hour rides always seem to precede my best results this season.
Pilates tonight at the Y. Should I go? I can ride there I guess, then ride home after. Or not. Fatigue and stress has me cross-eyed.
Thanks for reading.
I'm offering a reward. The irony is that I didn't even use it- the PT wheel went into the wheel pit and I used my light rear wheel! I left the dang computer on the bike and probably kicked it off with my knee when I got out of the saddle. Looked all around the course, asked people, made an announcement- no luck. Kind of bummed.. I'm not a wealthy person.
The race is one redeeming thing about the day though. Everyone on our team: Adam S, Ralf G, Alain, Matt and I- each of us populated at least one serious break during the 20 lap masters race and in the end, Matt Kressy smoked everyone in the field sprint, our J Alain Ferry was 4th and your hero was 9th, so I'm very pleased.. The announcer reported that our 35+ masters race had faster lap times than the pro race, so it's little wonder that 25 guys DNF'ed. 62 starters and only 37 finished. Running the course in reverse suited me just fine! Absolutely loved it.
Thanks for reading.
Curses to this weather. Its become such that I get headaches when its sunny out- not used to it.
I raced Ninigret last night, it was nice and warm and fun. Jumped onto a late flyer with two to go and got smoked. The field swarmed us with one to go and I coasted home, watching a winnable field sprint unfold before me. Bad judgment like that makes my skin crawl, but I should remind myself that I wasn't there to win, I wanted to test limits and see where I stand. I already know that I have a decent sprint. What I really need to learn how to do is hold 27 mph for an extended period of time, as in a breakaway- seeing as the typical masters crit averages about 26 mph..
So lately, I'm less interested in watts and more interested in speed. I want to practise going 30+mph for 2-4 minute durations, such as during the last 2-3 laps of a crit. I didn't even use my power meter at the Attleboro Crit- instead I used my much lighter Easton wheel.
I'm pre-registered for Norwell, now if only I could train a little bit for it.. I'm averaging 2-3 rides a week lately.
Thanks for reading.
There is a one mile loop in the middle of the park that's ideal for intervals of one minute or less. Also ideal for an early Sat morning crit a la Prospect Park. Goddard is also just a mile or two from my house.
Alarm goes off at 5:30
Out the door at 6:25
Bike ride to work is 29 minutes
Change into street clothes in time for 7:00 am meeting
Meeting ends at 8:30
Head out for Boston at 9:00, after a pit stop at DD for toasted sesame bagel and coffee
Arrive on Beacon Street 10:30
Go to work at project- keep busy til 12:30- time to feed the meter, change parking space and get lunch
Walk to Viga and use Davio's bathroom
Line at Viga is out the door all the way to the corner- I grab two slices of pizza and a Coke.
Walk over to the Park and grab a park bench, eat pizza, drink Coke, feed pigeons and squirrels (you can't spell "Pigeon" without P-I-G! These things were huge!) Squirrels get right up on park bench and beg for piza crusts. Awesome.
Head back to project for more project managwr stuff. Leave Beacon St at 4:30- lots of traffic.
Get back to the office at 6:30
Suit up and hit the road- head down to Narragansett Town Beach on Route 1/1A. Takes 1:15 to get there- a city bus almost kills me- - catch the mofo at a red light and have words (he could not hear, with elderly driver, who keeps pointing to the sidewalk.. Get to beach at 8:00 to meet wife and son. They're packing up, but there's time to stick my feet in the water and have a beer.
Wife drives us home- we quickly change and we're walking up Main Street to get ice cream for dinner. We stroll around for a bit and get home at 10:00. Time for bed.
Tomorrow I'm up at 4:30 so I can be in Bridgeport by 8:00.
Where I work, two project managers were fired last week. Another project manager committed suicide the week before.. Requiring me to move from my cushy new estimating position to their former office, in order to co-manage and "turn-around" a $3 million hospital project that's in a nosedive death spiral. I'm going to work earlier and earlier, getting home later and later.. Not only am I missing a lot of training, I'm also feeling more stressed and fatigued than ever, so even if there were 27 hours in a day, I'd probably not spend the 3 extra hours training. So, as much as I would have loved to race Attleboro on Saturday all pumped and primed and ready, I'm going to have to just do it for the fun of it, if I do it at all. I think I'm expected to be in the office Sat and Sunday.. It's another cool gray New England morning and I'm headed up to Beacon Street to babysit some carpenters. Thanks for reading.
My little boy gave me a cold for Father’s Day!.. So Sunday morning I had a raw scratchy painful cough and congested lungs.. I went to Harlem anyway as planned. It’s been a year of waiting! They combined the 35+ and 45+ for about 40 total guys.. separate prizes and rankings though.. Three guys broke free fairly early- I’m pissed that I didn’t bridge across when they went.. but I guess if I believed I could have, then I would have. Confidence is such a huge factor.. Duh. On the bright side, the rain held off- not sure how the pros made out.. The small field was more or less strung out the whole way.. No primes that I can remember.. With 6 to go, someone attacked, I followed, I pulled through, and rode him off my wheel. So now I had a ½ block gap to try to hold for 4 more laps. I was committed- riding with my wrists on the tops, I was holding them off pretty good. Coming up on 3 to go, just before the final corner, I hit a hole in the road so big that I’m amazed my fork didn’t break. It threw me partially over the bars, but I recovered and avoided falling. Speed dropped, nerves were shattered and I lost momentum and was swarmed during the following lap. Two to go.. I’m hanging on in the field as best I can- breathing in short gasps- wishing it were over, or wishing I had my late May form.. With one to go I’m nurturing my position- or rather- fighting for it literally- this is Harlem. Guys were PUNCHING eachother at one point- and lots of yelling.. I’m one of the top guys through the 2nd to last corner, but it cost me dearly- Everyone went to Mach 5 on that final run-in before the final corner, and I had nothing left- could not get up to the proper speed.. but I tried so damn hard. I sprinted- if you can call it that, to minimize the number of guys passing me. It was an all out effort that had me slowing down just before the line.. A few bottom feeders passed me with a like 5 meters to go- I was done.. They ranked me 10th in the 35+.. Better than last year when I was 18th out of about 71 starters- on a soaking wet course- but I was there to do better than 10th. Wish I could have delayed getting a cold by one day..
Now if Sunday were as prestigious as the 2008 edition, this would have been good enough for 16 rank points.. but I’m not so lucky- this year it’s a “D” event instead of an “A” event, so 10th place is only worth 1 point. I’ll take it. I know I did my very best physically, because when I do, my head feels like it will explode after the finish, followed by nausea and dizziness. Check, check and check.. It’s partially because I’m sick, but mostly because I didn’t sit up at the end, no matter what. In a mixed category event, you never know for sure who is passing you- it’s best to go full tilt no matter what.
Thanks for reading.
Next up: Keith Berger Criterium on Sunday. My favorite.
Today I am asked to move into the cubicle of a person who took their own life over the weekend.
He will be missed.
Past two years I’ve gone to