I read Tyler Hamilton’s book, The Secret Race, yesterday. All in one sitting. Or one laying down on the bed. Started 3.30pm, ended at midnight. No break.
I’m terribly fascinated by, not so much the sport, but by Lance Armstrong, the man.
There are two parts to my fascination.
One is the hero with superhuman powers that outsmarts and simply crushes the other players, so decisively. Leaves them in the dust. Why? Because I wish I was one myself. After being bullied and all the other unjust things that happened to me growing up, I wish I could just crush all those fuckers, once and for all. I wish I could show them who’s the boss, set the straight, let them beg for mercy. Who’s your daddy? Oh yeah.
The other part is the fact that Lance simply doesn’t make mistakes. Most cyclists experience crashes and other accidents. They take unnecessary chances and get punished. They’re a bit to trusting or careless with their doping, and they mess up or get caught.
Lance doesn’t make those mistakes. I remember a stage with a railroad crossing during Lance’s reign. The Postal team took the front, and when they got to the railroad crossing, Lance went first, alone, so nobody else’s crash could take him down with them. That’s a good illustration.
Tyler points out in the book how, in Lance’s mind, he expects to win. Every time. No other outcome makes sense to him. It’s not logical. It’s an error in the makeup of the universe when he doesn’t win, and it’s his job to correct it.
I don’t think accidents happen randomly, by chance. I believe that our conscious and unconscious thoughts and beliefs help bring them about. If things are going to well, we can make an accident happen that pull us back where we unconsciously believe we belong.
For most people, that’s down, towards less success, less flow, less love, less abundance. But for someone like Lance, it’s up. Right up to the top of the podium.
From the book:
The first race back in Europe was the Ruta del Sol in Spain, and Lance finished 15th. Afterward, the team congratulated him on a good finish, but Lance was having none of it. He wasn’t sulking, exactly, but it was like he couldn’t quite believe he hadn’t won. He talks about how much he hates losing, but to me it’s something deeper than hate. Losing short-circuits his brain: it’s illogical; it’s impossible. Like something in the universe is messed up, and it needs correcting. After the race, I think we all realized how big his ambition was, and how far he still had to go. I suppose I felt sorry for him.
I know exactly how this feels. I’ve felt from the inside on several occasions. One was when my home was invaded by burglars in Brooklyn and I just wanted them out of my house, now! And when I wanted to win over the two women that became my wives. And each time, I’ve gotten what I wanted.
So the question is, how can we cultivate this in our own lives? Wouldn’t it be amazing to have this kind of force on our sides?
I don’t have a fool-proof, battle-tested recipe. But I do have a good idea about what it takes, and the process is simple, but not easy.
I think there are two parts.
Part one is to align yourself with what the universe has in store for you. What I call “align with truth”. If Lance had decided he wanted to be a country singer, he might have had a different experience. You’ve gotta work on something that’s “in the cards” for you, that aligns with what the universe wants for you.
Part two is to remove your unconscious obstacles. Most of us say we want to succeed, but secretly we’re scared of it. Tyler mentions it in his book, too. Being number one comes with a lot more attention, and not all of it good. And his lies about doping only made that worse. We might also believe that we’re unworthy of success, that we’ll get abused, that we’ll lose it and end up worse, and on and on and on. Our unconscious minds have lots of interesting programs going on that might trip us up.
Read the book if you’re at all interested in this stuff. The tour was the only sports I used to watch on TV, but I don’t watch the tour anymore. I’m not that into cycling, really. But I am into watching the drama of people striving to fulfill their destiny. And there’s no shortage of that in the book.