Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Chicago-Style Spring!



The latest snow in Chicago ever recorded was June 2, 191o. I remember pitching on my birthday in a high school baseball game (May) and in the middle of my windup I saw snow flurries starting.
Today, it felt like summer will never come. At 4:45 AM, I woke to the sound of wind blown sleet and snow battering our windows...so much for groundhog predictions of an early spring. Winter clearly hasn't lost it's legs yet. Perhaps this is winter's last gasp. It still put many of us Chicagoans in a sour mood. As if, Lou Pinella pushing the weather as an excuse for his team wasn't bad enough. (It was about 40 at the Cubs game yesterday.) I remember how to pitch and baseball fundamentals unlike certain Cub players. (I'm left handed and very available Jim Hendry - Cubs GM. I won't blame my performance on weather.) How ridiculous!
This "spring" has really just been an extension of winter which started in mid-October. This winter has been one of the hardest in 15 years for us; severe cold, snow, wind, ice...you name it, we've had it. I'm really fortunate that I made a trip to San Diego for the Endurance Sports Awards weekend and another trip to Tucson in March. I don't feel like I'm "behind". (Actual results will determine if this is true in 39 days at the Florida 70.3 where it will be about 95 degrees and 90% humidity.) When I was riding with my friend Tony in San Diego we discussed how it is amazing that people who live in Chicago can compete with the folks who live in San Diego (southern California) or just about anywhere with better winter and spring weather; which are too many to list. Perhaps it is because we appreciate the good weather (whenever it arrives). Maybe we rest our bodies more in the bad weather and that helps us race when its nice? Could it be that we just get PO'd when we think of our friends riding their bike on the PCH in shorts as we ride another Computrainer workout in the dark basement asking ourselves for the entire workout, 'Why do I live here?'
On race day, nobody will care what you went thru or where you trained (basement or on the PCH). Lou Holtz once said, "Preparation doesn't occur when the fans are in the stands and the band is playing on the neatly prepared field." The context was that when Notre Dame won the NCAA Football Championship many people said, "Those guys were lucky." Lou's response was something like, "Nobody was telling them they were lucky when it was 100 degrees and humid in July and the team was running extra sprints."
So back to my Computrainer and Powercranks. Time to make my own luck regardless of the weather. Maybe the Cubs should hang out with more triathletes?

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