Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Whatever It Takes

Last week was positive. There was lots of high effort work which seems to be doing me some good. It is enjoyable to put the hammer down and have your body respond properly. Despite feeling good I have taken some preventive measures and gone to the acupuncturist. Years ago I lost a wrestling match with an eighty pound Halibut at work. The result was a muscle spasm in my back. That episode happened several weeks before the 24 hour solo world championships in Whistler. I was understandably nervous about the back injury popping up again in the middle of the race. I had a couple of trips to the pin pushers and I was good as new.
I have had recent days when the old injury gets aggravated by long days with a heavy backpack, so I knew I had to do something. I have an obligation to do whatever I can to ensure success with this GDR venture. I only want to do this event once and falling short of finishing because of some shortsightedness during the preparations would sit poorly with me for a long time. I recognize that there are quite a few people that are being inconvenienced by this selfish little excursion of mine. I am lucky that my family and the people I work with have been supportive. Out of respect for their sacrifices I cannot short change this final push of preparations.
Beside the acupuncture, this week I have made it through another map's worth of directions transcription and I have been rehearsing my packing and unpacking routine. A heavy rain storm blew through the night before last so I spent the night sleeping in my bivy. This was my first chance to check waterproofness and potential condensation issue. I was quite comfortable and slept in. Nothing beats sleeping to the sound of rain falling on a tent.

3 comments:

Tour Divide said...

DB, remember that much of success (read: finishing) in divide racing is dependent on how you respond once out there...whether you are invigorated, inspired by the experience, the difficulty. you have that ability, no doubt. you are a chef. one of the toughest jobs in the world. you know pressure, long hours. you're gonna be fine. you will make your family proud. you have more than enough mental capacity. it will carry you until your body responds with that amazing 'grand tour transformation' that puts you on auto pilot to the finish. yes train, but enjoy that process. follow charlie papazian's formula for brewing beer: drink beer while making beer and, at all costs, do not worry (about the finished product) lest you spoil it (the beer) in the process. cheers!

David Blaine said...

At this point I am just ready for it to get going. Enough of this getting ready business.

Tour Divide said...

amen. hardest part is getting to the start. huge relief once you roll out. life becomes very simplistic, singular, right away. its so beautiful. don't psych yourself out in prep (as i have done in past) and you'll be fine. sometimes at work or play i have to force myself to breath more deeply during lead-up weeks. yoga is not my thing but is probably what i 'should' do to calm nerves.

unrelated: do you know the love of glucosamine? i carry it in emergen-c flavor called 'joint health'. that and alieve. both help. use glucosamine in lead up too.

are you doing any standing riding workouts? spend some time going for several miles at a time out of the saddle. particularly climbing. you'll use this technique for sure divide racing as there will be times when you'll need to recruit the weight of your body to turn the peds. once you practice it you'll notice a whole body soreness you can't get from sitting/pedaling. this whole body soreness is pretty pervasive in the first 5 days of racing. if you can get some of that out of the way in lead-up, all the better to transition.