For me, my motivation is having a big audacious goal. Ironman tends to fit that quite nicely and in the past few months Kona has been foremost in my mind at 4.00am getting ready for yet another train trip down to Kurnell for a ride or jumping into the pool, in the wind and the rain, for a swim.
Today, however, neither Kona or ironman was sufficient motivation.
And here it was I found that motivations can change. Because today the only thing that got me through this morning's ride was ... banana bread. Yep, you read right. Banana bread.
I was due to do an 80km ride at Kurnell - 4 laps at a steady pace. Showers were forecast but I wasn't too concerned. The rain radar didn't show any major rain coming and so at 5.09am I was on the train heading for Cronulla. By 6.30am I was starting my first lap.
All was good, and pretty quiet on the roads. However as I started the second lap the rain rolled in and started to make life pretty miserable. By the time I reached 40km and the halfway point I was debating the virtues of pulling the pin on the day. I was soaked and while not too cold, all too aware that I had an hour long train ride back home and wouldn't have an opportunity to dry off or warm up on the trip back home. And a week out from Ironman Cairns, it would be just my luck to get sick.
So I continued arguing with myself, at one point actually turning and starting to ride back towards Cronulla to call it a day. That lasted about 100m before I figured I may as well carry on - I was already wet and I could look forward to a hot takeaway coffee and toasted banana bread to have on the train going home.
And that was enough to keep me going all through the third lap. I was still considering pulling the pin at the end of the third lap - conditions were shocking, another cyclist had come off on the slippery road and had broken his collarbone and the road to Kurnell is essentially built on sand dunes, so wet weather tends to not only result in the bike (and me) getting wet but getting covered in sand as well.
However every time I thought about pulling the pin I would also think that a 60km ride wasn't enough to justify the banana loaf. To earn it and really enjoy it I had to do the full 80km, or 3hrs of riding.
So today it wasn't about Cairns or Kona. It was the thought of hot toasted banana bread that got me through the fourth and final lap.
And it tasted great!
P.S. Black Beauty (and Irongirl) felt like they had actually been mountain biking by the time they got home. Black Beauty suffered the new name of "Dirtiest. Bike. Ever." However that all changed after 2 hours of washing sand out of every crevice and surface.
Irongirl calls that the Worst. Job. Ever.