Bonking is not an option


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You probably don’t remember, and if you do, you probably don’t care but about this time last year I wrote about a bike race in Kansas called the Dirty Kanza. It is a 200 or 100 miler over gravel roads in the Kansas Flint Hills. I’m in the 100 version because (duh) it is roughly twice as easy as the 200 mile course.

Last year at about this time I was brimming with confidence. I told my brothers that I felt like a special forces guy who would be tested to the limits of his endurance, but overcome the challenge and prevail. I would learn to fight through the pain like the SEALs do at BUDS. I would face the beast and tame it.

What a load of drivel.

I didn’t make it. I barely made sixty miles and quit. I am sure that children not old enough to drive finished, as did people in their seventies. Riders could have carried their bikes and lasted longer than me. I know for a fact that a couple riding a tandem bike passed me, and they probably finished.

I did not.

They call it “bonking”, and I bonked. On the plus side, I did get a pretty nifty tee-shirt, so I guess I accomplished something.

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This year will be different, though. This year, I will not be like the SEALs. I will be like the Marines.

That’s because all of my brothers are riding in the race too. We will ride as a team, like the Marines do. We will race together, finish together (except for my little brother who will be happy to abandon the rest of us for personal glory and bragging rights – but I digress), and, if it is unavoidable, to fail together.

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We put our heads together to come up with a unique, descriptive, out-of-the-box name for our family group and came up with “Team Bacon.” In the process we discovered that we are not out-of-the-box thinkers.

Besides, Team Bonk was probably already taken.


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