Friday, May 24, 2019

Pre HT Belly-button gazing

Last night nothing felt right.  Dinner sat in my belly like a stone and I had to excuse myself from the social group and go for a walk to straighten out my gut.

In a myriad of men talking about how little gear they are taking I felt self concious to even get my bike out of the van.

It's time to let the world see me fail and I felt sick. Sick from the nerves? Or nervous because of the sickness. I wasn't sure.

We talked about 'slumming it' in our huts to get ready for the harshness of the trail, yet I was here for 2 good nights sleep before the race. I knew I Wasn't going to turn the heater on but I did go and get my 4 seasons bag out of the van to be sure of that good nights sleep.

It was restless, though I was neither cold nor uncomfortable.

In the morning I lay in, not wanting to get out into the cold but then I found it wasn't cold. Nor was I hungry. I chatted to new mates as I walked about the campsite and they asked me to ride with them today.

Having been reassured we weren't on a a fast ride I rushed into my kit and set out on the most pleasurable group ride ever. Even the majority of WHW walkers were jolly in the sun… and we met a centurion.

We had lunch in the Crianlarich cafe and dreamed that the next 5 (or 8 in my case) days were gojng to be this way.

They said nice things - gave me hope - weighed up my well loaded bike and were kind enough to intimate that it was deceptively light. All the while I was reminding myself that I'll be out 4-5 days longer than them. In the most extreme case twice as long… or maybe I will surprise everyone - not least myself.

That would be nice.

Back at base we smiled and sat in the sun. There was banter, tea and cookies.  We all know tomorrow and Sunday won't be like this. Today was a great day to spend riding with mates - not against them.

They've gone to the social. I've stuck to my own food and my own schedule and dinner was deliciously digestible. The dishes are always more cathartic on a camp site.  

Tomorrow we race. At least today I feel more relaxed about that.