I have never read such utter nonsense in all my dawg days! You are creating a disturbing precedent when you start filling these the innocent, vacuous "puppy" minds with these ridiculous claims that performance is somehow linked to the "work ethic".
Like you, I have had my fill of cock-and-bull stories of weight room regimens, spin classes, and now your inane suggestion of the Secret Training Rides.
Just between you and me (AND I KNOW YOU WILL KEEP THIS A DEEP, DARK SECRET), the answer lies the simplistic ethic of one of my long-time idols - Janis Joplin. When interviewed concerning her success as a singing icon, she stated that she owed it all to drugs, sex, and rock-and-roll.
A couple of other techniques I have used have included bribing certain members of the peloton to help me out. For example, a few dollars slipped to Barney Baxter before a particularly tough ride may yield one or two of his famous "pushes" on the hills. A donation to the Doll House Orphan charity fund will clearly influence Mike Wallace to flat conveniently just as everyone starts to go into oxygen debt.
If these subtle influences dont work, I have been told that dragging the brakes of a climber like ChrisO or Mac will help to keep me in the pack. Likewise, generously loosening the stem of a sprinter like Peter or David will surely slow the packs pace as it is obliged to slow to avoid bike/body parts littering the road, waiting for the EMS, etc.
And the last trick that I personally have used is the 45 pound lead ingot that I routinely carry in the trunk of my Solara. Last Sunday, I slipped it into the rack pack of a notoriously fast triple-hump-busting geezer who always murders me on training rides. Unfortunately, even WITH this handicap, he proceeded to hurt everybody on the ride.
I suggest that we stop wasting our time on these secret training rides, and work to develop new and unscrupulous schemes to improve our status in the Dawg-Pack.
As REAL Road Dogs - this is the ONLY training strategy that sinks to our un-lofty standards.
Let me know what you think.
PS: Lets keep these little secrets to ourselves. No sense giving these other guys the benefits of our experience!
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revised on Monday, November 8, 1999.
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