On Your Left
When I'm on the trail, grinding and putting my pedals in motion, the last thing I want to hear is, on your left. There is always going to be cyclists that can ride harder than me, faster than me, but I still hate hearing it. I find myself in a good rhythm, my cadence is good and my speed is consistent and a fellow cyclist will still make it seem like I am just casually riding. Meanwhile my hamstrings and calves are on fire trying to catch up. Sometimes my actual performance raises to the level of my adrenaline and I can generate enough energy to catch up to the cyclist and once I do that I can draft. When you watch cycling events; all the cyclist ride close together so they can draft and conserve energy. But sometimes the cyclist is just a more powerful rider and there's just nothing I can do.
On the flip side, it feels good to see a cyclist ahead of me and I'm starting to close the gap. The distance between my bike and their bike ahead of me starts to get shorter and shorter. For me the most important thing is to stay patient, slowly increase my speed until I get into striking distance then I raise up off the saddle and explode pass the cyclist. Passing the cyclist is the easy part; distancing yourself from the cyclist after you pass him or her is the hard part. One rider exploded pass me and I got on his back wheel and then he ran completely out of gas. And as I made my move to pass him in my exclusive TEAM HWTT cycling jersey, it gave me great pleasure in saying, "On your left!"