Cycling is like life. Cycling with no goal is meaningless. What meaning is there cycling in circles? Or living aimlessly? Meaning comes from direction and destination. Join me in my life's journey on a mountain bike :)

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Monday, December 26, 2016

Planning vs worrying

Admiralty, 43 km. On the way: 175 km fully loaded on fat tyres in a foreign land. Longer, if I get lost. I know from experience that 160 km (a “century” of miles} is the upper limit of tolerance. 140 km or less is leisurely, and that’s what cyclotouring should be about. But 175 km? A painful ride.

I’d a boss who said I’m stoic. Perhaps stoic on the outside, but not on the inside. Eric Barker writes: “A key part of Stoicism is just asking yourself, ‘Can I do anything
about this?’ … Next time you're worrying, pause and ask yourself, ‘Do I have control
over this?’ If you do, stop worrying and get to work. If you don't have control, worrying won't make it better.”

So, what can I control?

  • Ride time: I’ll need lights so I don’t have to win the race against the sun(set)
  • Weight: improve power-to-weight ratio. It’s weight weenie time, eg, I fuss with lights and spares: high power yet low weight (especially “button” batteries, lighter than AA). I don’t know how “barren” Myanmar is, but I’ll pack light yet calorie dense food
  • Route: don’t get lost! I pour over maps, mark out distances and plot routes. With the “terrain” feature on Google Maps (click the three horizontal lines at top left corner of Chrome browser), I drastically change my route.

Will the plan work? I don’t know. I worry it won’t. I ask myself: “Is there more I can do? I should’ve trained more. I add km, but time is running out and it’s been raining. Can’t do more? Stay home, pack and check equipment.”

As Eric writes, there’s no point cursing the rain. “You accept the rain. It's here. Denial and shoulds won't change anything... but that doesn't mean you can't grab an umbrella.”

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