Update: Cycling, Diets, and 117.

It’s been a while since I last posted. So, here is an update on life.

Last weekend was my first ever bike race where drafting was legal. It was awesome. I felt strong. All the miles I had put in since this time last year were finally being felt and I was finally counting them as significant. The course itself was 28 miles of flatness in south Georgia. Needless to say, the pace was fast and was getting faster. I was getting stronger. Macy (my bike) and I were fluid, like water. Cruising up and down the peloton at will, all the while smiling big, wonderful smiles. About 20 miles in, I heard the first sharp intake of breath as member of the peloton started to get winded. This only made my legs stronger. The smell of blood in the water. Could my first race be my first victory? I was certainly beginning to believe it. Then it happened. With about 6 miles to go, terror struck. The folks at Georgia Southern decided to add a three mile stretch of road that was unpaved. They called it hard-packed Georgia red clay. They lied. It was sand. All sand. I hit the sand and found my back tire fish tailing. I was losing her. I could only hold on a little while longer. Bikes and bodies were hitting the ground all around me. Then it was my turn. I laid her down. As soon as I hit the ground I looked up to see a rider from Clemson hit my bike and flip over his handle bars. I hopped back up and tried to get back on only to notice my chain had fallen off and Macy was temporarily unrideable. I watched in anguish as the last few scragglers road away, leaving Macy and I alone in the woods on a road covered in sand. I fixed her and hopped back on. I struggled all the way out because my cleats were full of sand and didn’t clip into my pedals. However, on the way out, I picked up a dejected rider from Alabama. I could of sworn I heard him speaking the unintelligible words of a man gone mad as he grabbed on my wheel. After a few more miles of nervous agony, pavement came into view. My heart kipped. We hit the road with fury and there was a thought in my mind of catching the main field. Would my legs be strong enough? Could I ride hard enough? I was surely going to try. So, we rode and picked up another rider from Georgia Tech. Then there were three. I was pulling, the other guys were hanging on. We came to the last turn, and a race official emphatically pointed us right. Two minutes later we realized he had emphatically pointed us in the wrong direction. We turned. We shouldn’t have. It was over. But, in the back of my mind, I heard Billy and Bryan’s words, “You better not be able to walk when you get off that bike.” So, I figured I might as well make the other two guys hurt on the way into the finish. I did. I pulled the whole way home. The last three miles was set at a pace close to 26mph. With about half a mile to go, Georgia Tech took the lead and gave my legs about ten seconds of needed recovery which was all they needed for the final sprint. I hammered with about 200 yards to go and held off the other two. Out of three it was me. But, I wasn’t satisfied. I wanted a chance for the final sprint and I didn’t get it. Could I have won? Maybe. At least, I believed I could. And that’s the hardest part.

Next week is North Georgia. It’s time for the men to stand up. Who will be the King of the Mountain?

In other news, (related to cycling) I’ve started a new diet in an effort to find some more speed and build some leaner muscle. I’ll trade good tasting food for speed any day of the week. I’ve been on it for about two weeks and I’m getting there. It’s not perfect yet, but I’m working with a guy to set goals and work out meal times. Hopefully I’ll start dropping some poundage and make someone cry from the speed eminating from my tires.

However great those things are, life is exploding in 117 Hunters Run (my house). At the beginning of the semester I felt the Lord telling me to lead my house and take the guys living here into a beautiful relationship with our Savior. I mentioned to them that I wanted to start praying on Tuesday nights. To my surprise, they all wanted to be apart. It started slow, but the Lord has been faithful and each week he has revealed himself in more and more powerful ways. There have been major victories won and each one of the guys in this house is quickly becoming a man of God. The change is evident. It’s almost been like watching a movie. Every Tuesday night we meet and every Tuesday night we leave being refueled. Last week we sat in silence and breathed in the Holy Spirit for half an hour. When we were done Billy said, “When we were praying, I saw a vision of Jesus standing in the room nodding at each one of our prayers.” Sick. Beautiful. Power.

That’s all for now. Drink Coffee. Ride a bike. Dance.