Honestly, society has gone soft. About a week ago, I quit. I gave up on a dream. I wasn't strong enough or prepared enough to complete the goal I set out for, the Arizona Trail 750. Granted, the decision may have been an act of self preservation, but I still quit. All I keep hearing is "But you raced the 300 so well," "you rode so fast," "you did good."
STOP. I don't need a sugar coat. We don't all get the glory just for showing up. Had I signed up for the 300 I would be ok with how I did, but that wasn't my race. It was an easy place to quit, with a ride out, and a car to food when I was hungry and weakly making poor decisions. My training regimen led to quitting being the easiest thing to do at the time. I set out for a goal, and I failed. I hate living with that looming over me, but it is a decision I must live with until I get a chance at redemption. Our society is used to quitters still wanting trophies, praising a job "well done" just for an attempt. A man I shared a few miles and many emails with, Neil Beltchenko, is the man who deserves a "good job" and a beer and a bowl of ice cream, not me. He smashed a long standing record by a long shot. Also everyone else who completed the course they set out for. Congratulations!
Not everyone gets a prize, or pride. That's okay. I'm pissed and disappointed with myself and my performance. I stand by my decision and I know it was right at the time, but it doesn't make me successful. It makes me motivated to work harder and be more dedicated, to whatever it is I set out for next. Maybe it won't even be a bike oriented adventure next, but whatever it is, this feeling, of being a quitter, will be on my mind.
Smarter, I'll get stronger, and go forward.
Ride report and pictures soon. (I really enjoyed about 270 miles of the ~300 I rode)