I talked with Charlie again today as I had some questions about the next two weeks of my training program which arrived via e-mail today. He informed me that my training is now "getting more serious" since my race season will be starting late next month. This means I will be riding at odd hours, for long sessions, and actually putting increased focus on those intervening recovery days to allow my muscles to restore and fully realize the strengthening obtained from the increased intensity and duration of work. I know I exasperated him with my initial resistance to these new recommendations and my repeated questions, but he retained his usual good sense of humor, telling me it was "okay if you curse me as you do these workouts; you'll be thanking me later", and I could almost see him smiling on the other end of the telephone as he told me that.
And of course, despite all my whining and complaining, I know (and I hope Charlie does too) that I'll get out there and follow the training plan to the letter anyway, no matter how difficult, or inconvenient, or exhausting, or whatever, because I know that anything worth having is worth working for, and I haven't come this far not to follow through and reach for those stars.