Sensory neurones and pushing myself

Many people with autism seem to have issues with pain sensitivity. This might be independent or part of a comorbid condition.

This weekend is the first mountain bike race of the year for me: I didn’t race much last year due to personal things and limitations on travel. So for me, this coming weekend is a big one.

I have my kit packed, the bike has been stripped down (as far as I am happy and confident to do so), checked, cleaned, oiled and put back together. Tyre pressures and clothing choices have been obsessed over. I’m now tapering down on my training towards the weekend in an effort to be most efficient on race day.

Here’s where my sensory neurones will kick into effect on Saturday; I know that racing isn’t easy, it hurts and I have been working hard to get my body used to hurting and still pushing through this; for an hour and a quarter or there abouts. My geek side says that my functional threshold power has increased, my cardiovascular fitness is good enough for me to push my heart rate very high ans maintain it at a level which is excellent for an ex-smoker in my late forties. According to the metrics I can obtain, my VO2 max (the amount of oxygen my red blood cells can carry per millilitre) is also very good. So, all of the numbers and geekery look good, my technical skills could do with some working on, but the course is unlikely to be the most technical that I have ever raced.

I do feel reasonably happy and confident in my abilities and I’m sure that on the day, adrenaline and the fact that I enjoy riding and competing will help me to suppress the pain and nerves. Let’s hope that it all goes well.

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