I am the Nina. The Pinta…


(Caution -  The easily offended should veer off HERE.)

Zack de la RochaThat one line from that one song has always had a crazy effect – it’s like someone stomped on in to my personal mental cave and started poking the ill-tempered bear that lives there. Belligerently. Willfully. Gleefully. Infuriatingly. Waking it up from it’s slumber and prodding it into a red haze of anger and pain, making it cast about for an outlet for its rage.

If you’re anything resembling the “40-year old 12-year old” that I am that headline makes the tribal drums in your head pound annoyingly where your demons lurk, rousing them from their uneasy slumber. I’m not talking about the demons of Excess, Incivility or Apathy, or the worst of all, the dreaded demon Entropy. I’m talking about the demons you once harnessed and ruled like an angry, vindictive and all-powerful god, keeping them in line with thunderbolts of will. These are the demons that made you the guy (or girl) you USED to be.

Remember? You used to be the rider that could drop a bag full of  hammers on the weekly group ride; that could lever themselves out over the abyss, where angry clouds brood over thundering waves of lactic acid as they pound angrily against your own personal cliff of anaerobic threshold. You used to be able to pitch a flipping tent there. You were hard. Lean. Fast. Maybe you were the fastest. Maybe you weren’t. But damn-it-all if you weren’t the toughest. Nobody could outsuffer you. You were the physical manifestation of  the railgun from Quake. railgunLoaded up with testosterone and shooting to maim. You were bad-ass. Indomitable. The giver of  hurt. The bringer of pain. The experiencer of joy.

That. Was. Yesterday.

In the physical universe we occupy and in adherance to linear time as we know it, perhaps that was a decade ago. Or even just last summer. Shoot – maybe you have yet to be that rider. Whatever. Glory is fleeting.

Don’t think that this is about podiums. About lording your dominance over someone else. It’s not. It’s about pitting your lumbering, malevolent, yet somehow useful mental beasts of burden against their equally powerful and omni-present enemies; Excess, Apathy and Entropy. It’s about using your troops to beat those foul beasts whimpering back into their caves. And the battleground isn’t on the road or on the trail. It’s in your head.

The bill for a successful summer is payable in advance. I know it. You know it. You can be that rider again. You can bring that balance back into your life. tonycurrentNot to get all Tony Robbins on you, but the choice is yours. Don’t overestimate what you can do in a week, but never, never, NEVER underestimate what you can accomplish in three months. Shoot – two months. And do you know what two months are? Eight individual weeks. One-by-one, step-by-step, but most importantly, one step at a time.

Do we have the stuff here to help you? You know that we do. Books, training guides, all manner of cycling gear…hell yeah we do. We’re the clearinghouse for the self-trained cyclist. Are we trying to get you to buy it? Who cares? It’s there if you need it, but we’re better served by converting you to full zealotry. By getting you to pound out 90 minutes of intervals on the trainer while sweat drips down your top-tube. By goading you into wrapping every inch of exposed skin in layer upon layer and riding your bike while the sheep cower in front of their TV’s.

So let’s do it together. I’m going to Sea Otter in 3 months. Today at 5’9″ I weigh 190lbs and am kind of built like Captain Kirk. So far today I’ve had two pancakes (no syrup), a bowl of split-pea soup, one chicken breast, one cup of cheddar cheese Goldfish crackers (we have two little kids) and about 26 ounces of beautiful hand-roasted coffee from my buddy Sinjin in Denver. Not exactly the dietary plan of champions. And I’ve done nothing physical all day. Meet me here tomorrow. Let’s compare notes. Because the holidays are over and the new year is here. The cookies are gone and hopefully you’ve passed some of that impacted rib roast from your colon. There’s no better time than right now to take the path less traveled. It all starts with one step.

Take it with me. Raise your fist and march around. Sleep now in the fire.

Meet me here tomorrow. I’m serious.

Velo Jones


14 Comments to “I am the Nina. The Pinta…”

  1. Daniel 7 January 2010 at 5:40 pm #

    Holy fucking shit, I used to be that guy, and you just really pumped me up to be that guy again. Thank You, thank you. I am now seriously motivated. To get in shape and to be back here and read more. That was heavy stuff. Please keep it up!!1

  2. Marc 8 January 2010 at 6:16 am #

    Are you my psyco-therapist? Did I talk in my sleep last night? You pegged the way I used to be ( testosterone isn’t a performance enhancing drug according to the UCI but it’s a no-no to take ). Oh yeah, people need to buy some training books from you not just because you are the super motivator but just so that they know what the hell they are talking about when they talk to me. I think you need more key meta words. You’re not hitting the search engines hard enough.

  3. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Shannon Galpin, Mike McCormack. Mike McCormack said: Latest Velo Jones blog post just published. Raise your fist and march around. http://ow.ly/TR07 [...]

  4. Velo Jones 8 January 2010 at 10:57 am #

    This is the way I feel about me. I’m lazy. I’m overweight. I have two kids. It’s Christmas. I’ve switched careers and homes 3 times over the past 7 years. I’ve lost 2 summers to significant injuries, then another while I worked for/with a psychopath and yet another while I buried myself trying to salvage a business from an incredibly bad decision made by its owners.

    I have 50 reasons not to engage and to tell you the truth I was never really that fast. But when I was fit I could hang. And occasionally make the riders around me hurt just enough to merit that nod of respect at the top of a climb or at the bottom of a descent.

    I want that back. I want my gut gone. I want to play with my kids and not have to knead my back or massage my knees. I want this for me. And for them.

    Thanks for reading. Come back tonight and I’ll tell you how Day One went…


  5. Bob 8 January 2010 at 11:28 am #

    xGood stuff, Velo Jones. For two months I’ve been making every excuse in the book NOT to go down the basement and stare at my concrete wall while sweating my balls off on the trainer for an hour.

    Three kids. Stressful job. Tendonitis in my knee. Too much work to do. Blah freakin’ blah.

    No more. It stops here. Knowing there are other folks out there going through the same thing but are able to say “FUCK THAT, I’m going down a different trail” is inspirational. No more bullshitting myself. That stops today.

    Thanks for the kick in the ass.

  6. impala 8 January 2010 at 11:56 am #

    -because I have to believe… even if they don’t.

  7. IamTomorrow 8 January 2010 at 12:16 pm #

    ok Jonesey, tomorrow is here. Care to report on progress? what no progress? really? what’s the excuse this time – too many inspirational words to write?

    Don’t leave it for tomorrow – there’s still today.

    Get out and ride. NOW!

  8. Velo Jones 8 January 2010 at 12:24 pm #

    I’ll post again tonight about yesterday and today. Diet, regimen, thoughts, first impressions. Some good, some bad. It’s a start.

  9. Sinjin 8 January 2010 at 12:46 pm #

    Fuck it!!!! Lets roll this shit together! I’m a 40 year old wannbe that is gonna dish some pain in your ‘hood this year…but I know that I am gonna feel it way more than whomever I’m dishin towards! Yeah, BA-BY (Dick Vitale), lets make that pain mean something, and when you hear me coming into the finish line on Day6, you will know that I sucked it up, paid my dues, and that the primal scream at the finish line is meant as much for me as anyone else.

    Yeah!!!!!!! Lets go! Go! GO!!

  10. Sinjin 8 January 2010 at 12:48 pm #

    By the way…

    26oz?? HTFU!!

  11. Velo Jones 8 January 2010 at 12:50 pm #

    It’s only a 32oz press…and the beans DO displace some water.

  12. Sinjin 8 January 2010 at 1:01 pm #

    Besides, what’s a good (training-related, motivational) anxiety attack between friends anyway??

  13. Karen 8 January 2010 at 8:27 pm #

    Uh huh that’s what I’m talkin’ about! I moved to Texas last year (to eat fried food)(to watch my ass grow wide from being a desk jockey)to work and to be closer to family; let’s just say also moved away from a life of hard physical fun times in the outdoors and I have been giving myself the same talk. It’s time to HTFU! No workout pardners? SO WHAT! Get out of bed in the morning and get moving! Nails for breakfast! GRRRR.

  14. risperdal 13 February 2010 at 12:59 pm #

    chilled by a low whining sound that seemed to be coming from a culvert that

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