For many, it’s an attitude. A never-ending journey. A continual process.
For others, it’s a necessity. The need to feel alive. The need to see continuous improvement.
For everyone, it means waking up in the morning knowing exactly what to do now to be a better athlete and person in a few weeks’ or months’ time.
It’s about urgently needing to feel your legs burning during a sprint, while everything else slips out of focus and stops. Noises suddenly seem more distant, your vision blurs, your mouth opens wide as if all the air in the world isn’t enough.
It’s about the satisfaction of following a plan. Of reviewing your scheduled training and knowing that it will hurt but you’ll do it anyway, because it’s exactly what you need. It’s about the desire to challenge yourself. To know whether that time on the climb near your house is really the best you can do. To fail once. Twice. Three times. To fine-tune the details, prepare better, and always learn from your failures. And then come back and succeed the fourth time.
It’s about the desire to see how you match up. It’s a competitive attitude that needs an outlet, and the bike is the perfect channel. That lunchtime ride, that hour of evening training — when it would be more normal to spend time on something else — is just what you need. Not to imitate someone, not to be something you’re not. But to function, to keep yourself in balance, to feel alive.
It’s about a feeling. About an attitude. About a way of thinking and living. It’s about all this and more. One thing for sure: it’s not about a contract.