One of the first questions everyone asks is how much this race costs. My usual answer is a flippant “everything you have, for a time”, because it’s more true than it sounds. It consumes every waking moment and many sleeping ones, every penny that you can possibly justify and a few more, every ounce of energy and drop of gumption that you can muster. But I realize this isn’t really what they were asking, so in the interest of science, I’ll take a stab:
Plane tickets for self and crew: $500
Van Travel: (3000 miles * $0.37) $1110
Various Travel Related (Mex insurance, Hotels) $500
Race Entry, SCORE Membership: $750
Crew and Personal Food: $500
Race Specific Bike Prep: $500
Obviously, it’s possible to argue with any of these figures- the van probably doesn’t cost me $.37/mile to operate, I’ll get use out of the new clutch, cables, chains and sprockets, etc that I put on the bike beyond the race, and so on. But suffice to say, it’s not cheap.
But the money is less than half the story. For me, the mental preparation has been all-consuming for, literally, months. The last thought through my mind every night since late April has been wonder or fear or excitement about the race, and the new day resumes where the old one left off.
And the moments in between have a lot to do with the race, as well. Afternoons in the gym, Evenings spent working on the bike, weekend training rides where I attack the same corner again and again, trying to improve technique so that riding 80% will require that much less energy.
But all this is essentially about the how, not the why, which is the more interesting question...