Thursday, July 29, 2010

Contre Le Montre, Le Commute à Vitesse

This is dorky but sometimes to get into race fitness by time trialing my commute to work. I find it is almost the time of a cross race. I used to do it a lot more last year, but then I had less training hours because of a busy schedule so I would push intensity.

I was running late this morning and I set a blistering pace! On my 23 lb. steel Jamis Quest no less!

Commute from Madisonville via Fairfax Bike Trail, Erie Hill, Down Delta, Riverside Drive, up Eggleston, over 9th and down Race.
9.8 Miles of EcoRace Luv.

Big Ring Throwdown this mornin'


On Aluminum Cross Bike

Friday, July 23, 2010

Contre le Montre

If you overheard me speaking French you would think that I am against a small town in Switzerland, but what I mean is the race against the clock. Since Mohican I haven't done a good job of following a specific plan in my training. Here and there I have been doing sprints, but no 10, 20, 30 or 60 minute powertests. Today I got a bit bored so I thought I would do some intervals against the clock — so I can track my progress thoughout the rest of the year.

Finding Form on Kuglar Mill
Last year I did a series of PowerTests on Kuglar Mill. Bridget developed this workout with her Coach Bill Pryor. I shortened my time trial course this year (last year I would race to the stop sign, perhaps a safety issue!). I have attached a diagram of my attempts this year.

It was so hot today, the heat index in the upper-90s, but I held on without throwing up and set two times that smashed my previous efforts! I ended up riding my new course in 6:23 averaging 16.4 mph.

Jimmy's Hour Record
Well it was so hot out that I decided to take refuge on the Little Miami Scenic Trail, but that can be quite a boring ride. Since it was a Friday afternoon I knew it wouldn't be too crowded so I thought I would attempt my own personal dorky hour record. I was inspired by the old Eddy Merckx movie in the velodrome.

So I barreled along, hoping to find some form for cross. I ended up riding 21.15 miles in one hour (with stop signs and the occasional passing of slower cyclists). It's okay, I'll take it. I think I can do better, we'll see!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Race #40: Une Trés Vite Lanterne Rouge

I decided to step it up this year and try and race with the big boys. I've been doing all these endurance MTB events and it seemed silly just to ride a couple laps. I wanted to race Expert and focus mainly on the Cincinnati Off-Road Alliance race series.

I looked at last year's results, figured out their average speed and crossed my fingers. My last ride at East Fork was about 27 miles and took me roughly 2 hours and 40 minutes. I just didn't want to be embarrassingly slow. So I set my bike computer to show AVG MHP and hoped that I could maintain 11.5 mph (the speed of last year's lanterne rouge).

Well, I brought my best but it wasn't good enough! Man, the start was fast (I rode 4 hours the day before, and didn't get to warm up enough) and I had nothing going onto the trail. The top 5 of the Expert Vet race plus Betsy Shogrun caught me in Phase 1 of the trail! But suddenly I picked up my tempo and kept that last guy from Vet in sight.

I looked down half way through the first lap and my average speed was mid-13s! For the rest of the race I bled some speed, and the last lap the heat got to me and I started to cramp a little. But depending upon the actual distance I ended up average 12.7-13mph! Whoa. I ended up finishing 2:07:53, nearly 40 minutes faster than my last training ride of a similar distance at East Fork!

This is was my little engine is used to doing:
Approximate Average Speeds in Previous MTB Rides
11.4mph (04.25.2010 Big Frog 65 with tons of fire roads)
10.9mph (04.07.2010 Riding Austin's Walnut Creek trails on CX bike)
10.6mph (09.13.2009 England-Idlewild Race)
9.98mph (07.04.2010 East Fork Ride with Bjet)
8.97mph (06.05.2010 Mohican 65)
8.75mph (01.30.2010 Chilly Sat Mornin Beatdown at East Fork)
8.17mph (08.23.2009 Caesar Creek Race)

Even though I came in last place I am still really proud of my performance and surprised myself at what I could pull off!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Friday, July 2, 2010

Rocky Mountain High

Life has been kicking me in the teeth lately. Mainly just working really hard, training too much and not resting enough. Doing a lot of overtime without getting my 6-8 hours of sleep to keep me sane. I'm not even joking, I was on the verge of wigging out from a panic attack.

THAT'S WHAT VACATIONS ARE FOR! I really needed it. It was so great to head out to Colorado with Bridget's family and be reminded of what's important in life (Family, Love, Babies, Beer, Da Earth, Trails, Sunshine, La Copa Mundial, in no particular order).

1) Trail run of terror with Bjet! We were running in WestCliffe, CO at about 8,000 ft on these small mountains. We got about a quarter mile up the trail when I saw this thing walking on all fours. It was a teen brown bear. Bridget tried to throw her arms up and roar, but the bear kind of laughed at her and got bored.
2) ATV with Bro-in-Law's Dad. I bet that guy can really throw down on some technical shit. I was scared shitless the thing would roll. I drove so slow that I could have MTB'd it faster!
3) Trail Run and Hike with the Fam. We ran through this "Sound of Music" meadow. The hills are alive!
4) The family that bikes together stays together. Mountain Biked with Bjet and the Bro-in-Laws. Everyone kicked some ass! We climbed some singletrack switchbacks up Chris Mountain outside Pagosa Springs. Really fun!
5) Took a wrong turn and got lost in Martinez Canyon! Rode MTB solo one day. Lovely ride, it was late afternoon. Summited Chris Mountain again, and rode through some cattle pastures. Passed 2 herds and rode right through the middle of one! Scary! Saw 2 foxes, one white fox and the second was pretty tame and super cute!
6) Stayed in Gunnison for a night. Found out there was an MTB race in Crested Butte, the birthplace of mountain biking the next day! Such a tease. Would have loved to do it but not time!
7) Trail run on the Colorado Trail at Kenosha Pass. It was so cool. You run along and suddenly you are overlooking the entire South Park Valley.

Dream Rides for the Future:
– Mountain bike the Colorado Trail from Denver to Durango
– Do Ride the Rockies or Tour of Colorado someday. When I feel like suffering!
– Cross bike all over Pagosa Springs. Piedra and Four Mile roads offer some incredible scenery, CX bikes would be perfect!
– Ride Wolf Creek Pass outside of Pagosa. Nosebleed!
– Stay in Ouray and ride the Alpine Loop.
Fat Tire Bike Week in Crested Butte

Resources for cycling in Pagosa Springs:
– We rented bikes from Pedal and Powder and newly launched Trek dealer.
Pagosa Trails, rode out of Gate 5 area a lot
Pagosa Rides
Pagosa Cycling Tourist page

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Proof of Motorized Doping in Pro Peleton

If you get about a minute in I think it become pretty evident that Romain Feillu's bike is altered. There is something bizarre about his cadence. Call it a hunch.

By the way, got my new "Electronic Shifters" on order. They should be on the Paragon by my first Harbin Park TT.