Resident Masters racer Lee Waldman waxes poetic – literally – about his training.
I am from every miserable race and training sesson
sweltering heat and bone numbing cold.
From squeaky clean to thoroughly drenched
in sweat and mud.
I am from the workroom in my basement that smells of Simple Green and Kerosene
From steel to aluminum to carbon,
All loved in their own time and place
All of them used, abused, ridden hard
And sometimes when it’s all I could do, put away wet.
I’m from never quitting
(even if it hurts, and it always does, from the whistle to the bell)
consumed with guilt if I did
From a father who never had the chance to shine as an athlete (survived a war and a Depression,)
So I ride for him
From a mother who was kind and loving in the most demanding way
From getting ready to race in the back of my car,
To nice hotels five minutes from the start.
I’m from, “Watch your line,” to words I can’t repeat here
(“If they’re mad, I don’t worry, they’ll get over it”)
From “Bad to the Bone” to John Tesch and Tour Music
From Denver, Colorado, (never thought about leaving, what a great place to ride)
From protein bars to oatmeal and almond butter before each race
From Albert Zweifle to Van Der Poel to Nys
From memories of every bike I ever owned and most of the races I’ve ridden
because of what they represent,
power, control, freedom and joy
Those memories residing in my heart then, now and forever.