Humming along

Week 10.
14 days to go.

It's when you're singing along, humming to the tunes on "It Seemed Like Thin Air" that you know you've been doing this for a while.
As the 40-minute climb draws to an end, "Don't Talk To Me" plays loud over the TV speakers. Louder than the 20" metal-bladed fan, spinning at full blast, that's for sure.
My wife, who had just come back home from work, gets the message — no exchange of words necessary. The puddle of Sufferlandrian Holy Water beneath me extracts a nose scrunch, though.

I keep an eye on the clock because I'll be doing the cooldown on the MTB on the way to fetch the kids from school.
It was close this time. I lost electricity twice during the session. Luckily, we have a backup diesel generator to keep everything working while the main feed from the electric company is down - which happens more often than not these days. It can be because of the rain, a fire, or some maintenance work - but you'll be smack bang in the middle of a VO2max interval, and BAM. Lights out, the fan stops, the computer dies, and you're left sweating, swearing, and cramping up, staring at a black screen.

Today, this happened after ~80 minutes of ISLTA, towards the end of the second (or third?) climb when you're ping-ponging with Nibali.
I quickly get off the bike, go to the main electric board, and shift the massive lever from "Elect.Comp" to "Generator."
The fan instantly blasts the room with a wave of air as the computers beep back to life. (Lava snow flies everywhere).
The generator hums in the background outside - it automatically engages when the power goes out. Likewise, it will also shut off when the power comes back on, so I know it's just a matter of time before I lose electricity again, momentarily as it may be.
Another minute or so passes while the computer loads, and I queue The Sufferfest ISLTA app video for the point where I got ejected. Lovely.
While on generator power, I don't bother with Zwift again (which is where I record the ride) because I know the electricity will go out again, and the ride won't save, so no point there.

But there is a point here: Focus and Positive Thinking.
The podium belongs to the Mental Toughness Program.

See, I used to get extremely angry, frustrated, and even violent when I'd lose power in the middle of a workout.
I once smashed a keyboard to such small pieces that it took months to find the semicolon under a dresser far off in the room's corner.
I was under the common ailment of "riding for the data," or "riding for stats," and not for myself.
While there's little to do when your computer crashes or stops working during a ride, it how you react that matters.

I once raced an event on Zwift that took the 128km Uber Preztl route. With 4km to go, on the Alpe Du Zwift, there was a power surge and the computer died. This is after nearly 4 hours of tough racing.
As you may know, it's impossible to get back into a Zwift event. All that beautiful data lost - 4km away from a PR, 4km away from an event podium, 4km away from meaningless cumulative statistics.
At that time, I just let my head drop and blank-faced my cooldown — nothing to do. Zwift Support were kind enough to credit me the ride, so I proudly wear the 2019 L'Etape du Tour de France virtual jersey (which doesn't require washing!!)
With The Sufferfest, though, when you log back on after a crash, you're prompted with a question about saving your previous workout :) so at least the data is safe, and you can later stitch things together with
(Zwift also saves the data locally, but you can't resubmit it back to the game for credit.)
So no explosion of frustration, indeed an improvement. But I'm even better now.

Thanks to The Sufferfest Mental Toughness Program (and Yoga, no doubt), my approach and attitude are different now.
It's operational - not emotional.
Power gone? No problem. Keep calm, stay focused.
Get off the bike, switch the mains, restart PC and get back to the grind. Worry later, if at all, about the stats/files/data/upload/download/segments/PRs/KOMs/challenges/awards/leveling up/cumulative Km's/blah/blah/blah...
What's important is to get back on as quickly as possible, and do the workout.
Nothing else matters, nowhere else to be, nothing else to do. (sounds familiar?)

Things can go wrong IRL too, right? Mechanical, flat, crash... I used to be the rider who'd throw the bike* in a ditch and steam, arms in the air screaming. Today, the (aspiring) Zen Master of Positive Thinking and Strong Focus.

(*not really, cost too much)

The PC shuts down again suddenly.
There are only 5 minutes to go until the end of the ride. I'm climbing in the Lava Snowfields with Nibali, head-to-head, about to surge and sprint to the line. Victory shall be mine!
I have to leave the house in less than 2 minutes, though, and hopefully, The Shark can wait.
Keeping focus, I switch the mains back to the electricity company, now that the power is back. I turn the PC on and launch The Sufferfest app - back to the second I got dropped.
I finish that 40-minute climb, sprint to the line, and jump off the trainer.
I'm late. I throw on a Coolmax T, quickly change from the road to the MTB shoes, pop a helmet on my head, and fly out on the MTB like the freezing winds of lava in the Mt. Sufferlandrian plains.
It's only a 4-minute ride, but undoubtedly, all records were broken.

Eventually, after collecting the kids, riding with them back home, and setting them off to get lunch going, I get back to It Seemed Like Thin Air, and complete the 2-3 minute cooldown at the end.
No Watt Left Unchurned.