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June 16, 2021
3/4 of the way up the last climb of 14 climbs on this sportive from hell, slumped against a low wall like a mortally wounded soldier, taking his last few desperate breaths lay an exhausted, fallen, cyclist. I stood on the pedals, lungs bursting, legs burning, making just enough forward movement to stay upright, he muttered almost under his breath, I know just how that feels.
And he did, I knew he did, just like all the others who have gone too far, too hard, for too long, and are way, way, beyond empty. When no amount of energy gells or tritronic drinks makes any difference - we enter the realm of pure survival. It’s not a question of mind over matter, it’s about shutting down the mind and pretending it doesn’t matter.
Soon, on a sunny sunday afternoon all over this green and pleasant land of England, cyclists will once again be fighting a last ditch battle, mainly with themselves, to the death, or at least to the end of an endless sportive designed by some narcissistic sadistic motherfu*ker. To think it all started so well just a few hours earlier, full of the joys of spring charging along like a plague of locust devouring the earth, according to the Daily Mail. Only to end up like the exhausted climber clinging by his fingernails to a shear rock face, so close to the top, but shredded, with not a molecule of energy to be found even in the depths of your soul.
Is this the new normal? I think it might be.
For the cyclist in your life - Cycling photography prints.
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