I wound my way up Sommerset, chasing an appliance repair man in his juddering van. Sommerset was a crappy road before the winter robbed it of its top coat, the snow plows excavating last year’s patches, the frost heaving the lumps and bumps into some kind of rally car nightmare.
I gained on him. It’s not a long hill, and it’s not too steep, but the pitch and terrain conspire to keep your speed down. The repair man’s suspension was taking a beating, but so was I, still in what I’ll call the bronchial phase of my fitness build up, my chest giving way before my legs.
It wasn’t much of a race. He beat me to the top, to the good pavement, and sped off combusting internally, while twenty meters behind I also seemed to combust internally.
I’m fitter than I was even two weeks ago. I’m pushing a bigger gear, climbing a little faster, suffering a little less, but I’m a long way short of 100%. If I had to score it, I’d call it 52%. That’s curiously precise, I realize, but it feels true to me, just more than halfway to peak.
This week’s Group Ride asks where you are, expressed as a percentage. Are you reading from another hemisphere, where summer is rounding into fall? Or are you here in the northwestern quadrant of the globe, where some of us have enjoyed the Pineapple Express, while the rest dealt with the Polar Vortex? I am assuming, of course, that your percentage is tied to your geographical meteorology, when in some cases it’s just about the ebb and flow of motivation. They do seem related though, don’t they?