It’s a blessing and curse. I love competition.
Well in truth, I loathe competition. I love to win. So naturally I gravitate towards activities I’m good at. So many to choose from!
So why do I love the Peloton? I am not built to ride. I consider myself to be at a huge disadvantage because of my size. It’s physics. I simply cannot exert enough downward force at large resistance to produce the output numbers needed to sit atop the leaderboard.
It doesn’t stop me from creating imaginary matchups. In order to even the playing field a bit, I limit my ride view to women in their 40s currently participating in my same ride. In every ride, I have 3 enemies.
The first is the woman right ahead of me. I believe she knows I’m there watching her and plotting her demise. I keep in close range, waiting for her to burnout trying to protect her lead. It’s most satisfying if she’s about 30 seconds ahead of me in the program. That way I time my final push until right before she ends her program so that she knows I passed her just as her time runs out with no way to redeem herself. Enjoy your day @siouxie from Iowa!
The next opponent is the chick behind me. I see you @milfof4 gunning for me. You’ll get close, within 2 points. But I know you lack strategy. You’ll exert too much energy too soon and you still can’t close the gap. You’ll be left exhausted and demoralized and I’ll end up smoking you by 8 kilojoules. I may even send you a little virtual high five. You know, for good sportsmanship.
The most destructive opponent I have is my own Personal Record. It sits there in mocking parenthesis next to my name and marks to the actual time ridden. Most days I slip further and further behind the elusive pace until it is unreachable. What did I eat that day? What time of day did I ride? Was I heavily cross training or was it after many days off? Shouldn’t I be stronger and faster each time?
Even worse is the days I do set a new PR. The finish line keeps moving. This is a game I can never win.
The fresh faced deputy walks in. And promptly vomits.
My twisted body hangs from my cycling shoes still clipped in. I’m not even tall enough to have hit my head on the ground when I collapsed. My knee joints have popped and sinewy cartilage and tendons are exposed like half eaten Buffalo Wild Wings.
The weathered Coroner, 35 years on the job turns, laughs and asks, “What, no ranch?”.
My phone dings in the corner. It’s the Peleton app. Congratulations! You’ve hit a new Personal Record.