Chasing silly goals

I’ve been using the Strava Climbing Challenge to give me some ride motivation. It’s a ridiculous quest: climb 32,099 metres in 47 days. That’s 683m every day, or 4,781 metres every week. I’d climbed a total of 3,000m in the 3 months leading into the challenge, so I needed to squash 3 years of climbing into 47 days. Absolute MADNESS!

But still, I liked the idea. I think of myself as a bit of a climber (ie. I’m skinny and have no power) and I love the peace and beauty of remote hill-climbs, as well as the challenge of pushing hard up a relentless face.

I started strong with a 1,200m climb on Day 1, and another 500m on Day 2. But since then it’s slipped away as I tapered for the Mooloolaba Triathlon and then took a week to recover.

Strava Challenge progress

With two weeks to go, it’s still in reach. But only just!

Today I did a 3 hour ride up to the Springbrook Best of All Lookout. 1746m of climbing. I set a PB of 1:01:43 for the main climb, and moved up 5 spots to fith place on the Strava leaderboard. That was my best effort – all I have – and right now my legs are jelly.

Springbrook Best of All Lookout elevation profile

If I do that same ride, every day, for the next two weeks, I can complete the Strava Climbing Challenge!

That’s insane right there! But it’s also strangely tempting. I don’t even know if I can make it up that climb tomorrow, let alone 13 more times!

What would I find out about myself? What would I find out about my body’s ability to endure? What would I find out about my mind’s ability to push on when tired and struggling? That would be an invaluable lesson which I’d love to learn!

But at what cost?

I’d need to increase my riding from 5 hours per week to around 24 hours per week, for two weeks. Where would that time come from? Time off work? Time away from the wife and four kids? Neither are realistic options. Can anyone lend me 40 hours?

And then there’s the Luke Harrop Sprint Tri which I’ve committed to racing next Sunday. How’s that going to work out with a week of mountains in my legs, and another week of mountains for recovery?

If I can’t guarantee getting the 40 hours, is it worth even pursuing it? The closer I get, the more it’ll hurt to miss out! And it’s been so cold in the morning lately! Brrrr!!

Arghhh! So many questions!

Never fear, all the angsting will be over in a few days. Either I will have pushed on with the insanity, or, more likely, I will have come to my senses and started swimming and running again.

Long live silly goals!

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3 Responses to Chasing silly goals

  1. jamesonblake says:

    That is the thing with biking it just takes so much time you can try to cram but somethings you just need time to do. That is the exact problem I run into.

    • jontsnz says:

      You’re right, James. The top guys on this Strava challenge are all riding well over 20 hours per week. People have different priorities.

      I compete against myself, because it’s the only level playing field!

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