Friday, August 26, 2011

Early Morning Riding

About a month ago I came to the realization that squeezing half hour or if I am lucky a complete hour of riding in during (I am self employed, so hold your slacker comments to yourselves) and/or after work was not working.
Basically it was getting me really prepared to do half of a race... I was dying out there past the hour fifteen mark...

Sooooo, time for some improvisation, tweaked riding time to early morning... This sucked as first, but you know, I actually enjoy it now... I also can consistently get longer rides in, all you do is get your arse out of bed and put the lights on and go...

Early rides do have its perks!

On another note, lost a good man this week in Bob Bailey. I knew Bob as a always a riot to be around and he defiantly had a severe case of Cycling OCD! Like the rest of us! My deepest regards to his family and friends...

Finally, its off to race this Sunday... Taking on the Tall Oaks Challenge with CHoppe.. Its going to be fast! I know plenty of heavy hitters attending, mainly my teammates! Going to be fun....

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Monday, August 15, 2011

Spoke Pony Showdown, Done!

Headed down to Swope on Saturday morning for the Spoke Pony Showdown 3/6 with the goal of improving my technical riding. Figured 6 hours of riding all the rocks at Swope park is exactly what I needed, as if you have read this blog, I whine like a little girl after every race that has rock technical sections.

This also was not by first rodeo, so I basically just wanted to put it in cruise control and try to stay in a groove for the long haul. We all started at the bottom of the exit drive, which is a steady paved climb. I don’t mind climbing; actually my results usually improve when the course has a bunch of climbing involved. Rock sections, the exact opposite.

Headed to the singletrack behind Tony S. as we both had the same game plan of staying behind the super fast guys but ahead of the slower traffic. Which really did not amount to much, it got bottlenecked almost immediately after we hit the first rock section. When we hit the section it was mass carnage, guys off the trail left and right, Tony went down right in front of me (decided to take a different line myself, rather quickly), looked like that one hurt a bit.

The rest of the first lap was more of the same; every technical section had riders everywhere. But I tell you what, once the smooth single track hit you, it was fast as hell from that point on. I especially liked the little ramp on one of fast downhillish sections.

After a short refill it was off for the second lap. Riders were a little more spread out by this time which makes going through technical sections a little easier. About the time I thought to myself “you know, riding these rocks are not that hard”, BAM, hit the deck. When I say deck, I mean a effen rocky ravine!!! After getting unclipped, checking to see if the all my body parts were still intact I climbed out and got back on track.

Left a piece of my ear out there! Got to love Swope!
Third lap was pretty uneventful other than I started to feel a little fatigued.  If it weren’t for being behind SC (2nd? nice job dude!) and watching himself go completely sideways and making a right hand turn down another ravine. The lap would have been pretty boring.

I really need to dial in my nutrition for these things because the fourth and fifth laps SUCKED… I suffered like a dog out there…I was suffering so bad on lap five I contemplated just calling it a day. Once I rolled back in I started to feel good again. I guess I am a little behind on my food/fluid intake.

Went out on lap six and (brace yourselves) actually started to have fun through the rock technical sections. I started riding sections that I have never ridden before. I even had a dude behind me tell me that he should be following my lines, which is hilarious to me. All be damned!

Headed through the last technical section and finished up the lap with teammates Travis and Jesse (who both had lapped me I might add, 2nd time for Travis! SOB’S are fast! ).  Finished the lap with an Ethos train, back-to back-to back, was actually kind of cool.

Last lap went pretty well also, just hammered along. I actually was feeling so good about my new found confidence on the rocks I was trying to put in a 100% clean lap. I failed at that, but it was fun trying..
My legs were feeling surprisingly fresh and It would have been a real pleasant lap if it were not for the bottom of my feet and my hands screaming at me. All my hours training on the road did me a disservice in preparing for bombing rocky downhills.  

All in all, I am satisfied, I accomplished what I wanted, which is to improve my rock riding skills and gain some “endurance” fitness.

As usual, Heartland Boys put on one hell of a race. Well ran, well organized, top notch! Even had a dead hooker section (Don’t ask, you should have been there)..We are lucky to have them in the Midwest.
On another note, Ethos Racing was again well represented! Jspell came down from Joetown, Travis, Jesse, Burnsy and Sarah all killed it like usual! Especially Travis and Jesse, they were unbelievably fast Saturday…G-wiz would have killed it like usual, if it weren’t for throwing himself into another ravine, in spectacular fashion from what I hear…. I am pretty sure he is okay, went on to win the SS Championship on Sunday…

Monday, August 8, 2011

Day Riders....

Found this little gem over at Ritte Van Vlaanderen (highly suggest checking them out, there a riot) , anyway, I guess its a blog written by one of their riders. Its called Il Chat Del Giorno, I have only read this post, but its a little gold mine so far...
I thought it was a funny read and I think you all will relate. Don't know why you read this blog if you don't. 

For most amateur racing cyclists battles are won and lost in the wee hours of the morning. When the sun is still coaxing the sleep from your eyes, baking the pavement beneath your wheels and painting the buildings in its warming glow. However, there is a sub genre of riders roaming the streets out there. Carefree individuals whose skin shows the rich tan of hours spent outside at prime hours. Those cyclists who walk out the front door to start their ride well after Kathie Lee and Hoda have drained their second bottle of Rombauer on Good Morning America. The lucky few who stop for lunch instead of coffee in the middle of the day… on a Tuesday. I speak of course of the Day Riders. Day Riders spend most of their time in the saddle between the hours of 11am and 5pm on weekdays. Those mystical hours when most of the general population is toiling away in the office interspersing requests for TPS reports with frantic glimpses at cycling websites. Riding a bike during the afternoon on weekdays is a unique experience in itself, akin to seeing your teacher in 5th grade at a liquor store; you just didn’t know they actually ever left the school grounds. It’s a more relaxed time to ride, with less traffic and fewer riders you begin to feel as if you’re part of an elite club of sorts where membership is paid for in the outlandishness of how one is able to pull all this off in the first place. In my experience the back story of the day rider is often the most impressive aspect of the enterprise
Me: So what do you do?
Day Rider: Oh I sold a company I started awhile back.
Me: Would I know the company?
Day Rider: I dunno you every wipe your own ass?
Me: Uh… I don’t exactly talk about… I mean, yea I do that.
Day Rider: You’re welcome.
Me: Sorry?
Day Rider: You know the springs inside of the toilet paper skewer that allow you to pop the roll into the holder with the greatest of ease? Yea that was me. So again, you’re welcome.
Me: … thanks.
Or there’s the uncomfortably tan rider who never wears a helmet, hails from somewhere in Europe and to this day I’m not sure exactly what he does.
Me: Oh dang, did you see that Lamborghini just pass us? Man what it would be like to drive one of those huh?
Tan Man: Oh… yea. I mean, sure ya know, Lamborghini. I mean, you do know they started as a farm equipment manufacturer don’t you?
Me: I didn’t know that but are you saying you wouldn’t want one?
Tan Man: Rear window visibility is sub par on them.
Me: You’ve owned one haven’t you?
Tan Man: Hold on Laetitea Casta just texted me…
The nonchalance inherent in the Day Rider is surpassed only by the fantastically outrageous circumstances they find themselves in on a regular basis. Void of pretentiousness and jealousy the Day Rider enjoys activities that would send a “normal” rider reeling with giddiness
Me: What’d you get into this weekend?
Day Rider: Oh well grabbed a chopper with a buddy up to the altitude training camp with HTC. Did some pace work with Bernie Eisel and Renshaw, introduced Stapleton to my private chef, got a Specialized Venge for free, burned $100 bills and brushed my teeth with diamond paste…. what’d you do?
Me: Exhausted my McDonalds gift card on a Big Mac meal.
Day Rider: What’s a gift card?
The Day Rider enjoys life on the road with unique frivolity and a passionate pursuit of leisure. Basking in the desolate escape that is the post lunch lull, face upturned to the solar rays of rejuvenation, legs content in the absence of the pre-dawn chill the Day Rider allows a subtle smile to wash over his face. The PROness of putting in 120 kms at noon is usurped only by the security of earning 3.5% interest on a couple million residing in an untraceable Swiss bank account.  Now if you’ll excuse me I have a fitting to make for a new albino baby seal three piece suit.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Spoke Pony Showdown

Next little adventure will be next weekend down at Swope. Its an endurance race which I like. I put less pressure on myself to perform when its an endurance race, well, because I don't train for them. Basically I go out to have a good time, and in this case I also get to practice some rock riding loven without the "every second matters" feeling I have racing traditional races. Which I desperately need...

At any given time, I don't think I have been on a ride longer than 3 hours this season, so I figure the most logical thing to do is enter a 6 hour race.

Here is the link if your interested in a days full of riding...

I hope they have t-shirts.....