After another couple incidences on the club ride last Saturday I've decided to cease(group)cycling on parts of the Waverley road as part of the official club ride. A combination of several groups on the route, increased competitiveness between those groups and heavy traffic has made me skittish.
Our success as a club is also our weakness in that membership is growing as is the overall fitness levels of our riders. Whereas that is a good thing it comes with a price. That cost is the increased blurring of the group's abilities;no longer do we have fast, intermediate and slow groups but several groups that can ride at a high(er)level. From my perspective this increases the competitiveness of the club ride, means riders are jumping from group to group enroute, the "chasedown" seems to be the new game in town and packs are merging on the busy roads creating logjams with traffic.
As a result I've decided to step back and stop riding with any group on the particularily busy stretch of Waverley road from Waverley out to(back)from Laurie Park. I will either train solo or just peel off any group I'm with before we reach the aforementioned areas of concern.
I tried to initiate an optional alternative Saturday morning ride in the same general area but one that avoids the high traffic areas but quickly realized getting any sort of consensus was impossible. It was becoming increasingly frustrating even suggesting any sort of changes to the Saturday morning "sacred cow" clubride.
So I guess for the most part I am now a "club of one". I'm ok with that as this is entirely my decision just based on my personal comfort level. The club remains as one of the best I've participated with and I will remain a member as the riders are awesome folks.
In the meantime I am investigating options. With my orthotics I should start running again but I admit I am rather tentative. That said I enjoy duathlons and would like to start competing again with Triathlon Nova Scotia. I also have purchased a used hardtail MTB so the club trail rides are another option. I also intend to ride the CS cyclocross series so I suppose I should consider a membership with their club in addition to my membership with BPCC and TNS.
Cycle commuting continues to be a focus and might explain my sudden desire to cycle in low traffic areas on the weekends. A week of rubbing paint with cars commuting to and from work just means I have less tolerance for it at other times. It`s all about balance. It`s all about having fun on the bike.
So I am(will)be part of "many" but also remain a club of "one".