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To Be Determined Journal

To Be Determined is a journal of cycling, adventure and photography, curated by a NYC-based cycling team known as TBD Racing or Team TBD. From criteriums to cyclocross to product reviews and travel diaries, it is all part of the TBD Journal.

The Daily Grind: remembering to ride for fun

A favorite past time: getting lost on road bikes while riding ‘trails’ in the Hamptons.

A favorite past time: getting lost on road bikes while riding ‘trails’ in the Hamptons.

With the final weeks of the 2019 road season underway it is nearly time to give into a bit of burn-out. It is also an apt time to partake in bit of self-reflection. Looking back on my Road Results, after all of the very cold and very early mornings, the wet days spent race directing rather than racing, and a canceled race or two, the reality is that it has been a tough road season. A confluence of off the bike stress and ‘real life’ time commitments didn’t help. Nor did the many days spent stressing over registration trends. And with Intelligentsia Cup off my race schedule it was difficult to get motivated for a calendar that mostly featured the usual assortment of local races in Central Park and Prospect Park. As much as I love NYC Park racing, those events just are not the same caliber as Intelligentsia.

 
 
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And so, with just a few local races left on my calendar before cyclocross kicks off, the past few weeks have been less about the rigors of structured training and more about getting back to riding for fun. Or as Jacob, our team coach, prefers to spell it: F-U-N. It’s a topic that Ted wrote about last year, but particularly as we move later into the season I find it oh so important to partake in some non-structured ‘training.’ For me that has meant some weekends wandering the backroads (and trails) by the beach. Other weekends this has meant simply taking time off the bike for ‘real life’ adventures.

More from road bikes as trail bikes in the Hamptons.

More from road bikes as trail bikes in the Hamptons.

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Blue skies and empty roads (on a golf course that costs $600,000 to join) = happy as a clam.

Blue skies and empty roads (on a golf course that costs $600,000 to join) = happy as a clam.

 

Which isn’t to suggest that structured training has come to an end entirely. I am still joining in some big team rides, including some race simulation efforts that were far from easy. But as road season comes to a conclusion it’s been a blast getting back to riding mostly for fun and taking in some new events like D2R2. As our deep dive into the lifecycle of the average bike racer showed, more often than not bike racing is a two year venture for most folks before they leave the sport entirely. As I enter my tenth year racing, it’s these breaks from structured training and getting back to riding for fun that keeps me centered, and excited about the prospects of the 2020 road season. Moral of the story: don’t forget to ride for fun.

Is this how you do crossfit?

Is this how you do crossfit?

Crossfit success?

Crossfit success?

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The gruppetto during one of several uphill race efforts on this particular ride.

The gruppetto during one of several uphill race efforts on this particular ride.

After several simulated race efforts, post ride coffee (and a few beers) with the squad is the perfect way to end a ride.

After several simulated race efforts, post ride coffee (and a few beers) with the squad is the perfect way to end a ride.

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