Sunday, February 26, 2006

Easy Day

I was out for about 3.5 hours today. The weather was sunny but fairly cold. I wanted to ride more, but family obligations kept me from heading out until after 2pm. Several people were supposed to join me, but I never saw them. I was a few minutes late, so maybe that was it.

Anyway, this will be a pretty heavy week. I want to make sure I am ready for AR next week.

I sent in my app for Dirty Kanza. I was a bit late, so I hope there is a spot for me. If I don't get in, I'll be down in NC for 12 Hours of Tsali.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

What are you doing???

That was my wife's question when she saw me working the one-legged intervals tonight. I threw them in to spice up my resistance workout on the trainer. Never did them before, but I think they will become a regular part of my workout.

Family obligations are going to mess with my long ride this weekend. It looks like I will be riding indoors, and perhaps a bit latter in the day than I would prefer. That is just the way it goes sometimes.

Ordered up some parts and other goodies this week. Ritchey, Hammer Nutrition, and White Industries orders this week with Kenda and Magura orders soon to follow. Soon the bikes will be ready. But what about the rider? Only time will tell!

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Nice and Easy Does It

Had a nice easy spin for an hour yesterday. Not on the bike today, but I am looking forward to a nice ride tomorrow. I'd like to get outside, but it will depend on the weather. If it is nice, like it was today, I'll be out on the road.

The weather is supposed to be pretty much garbage this weekend. I'll be doing some serious training in Lansing this Saturday. I imagine I'll be on the trainer on Sunday. We'll see.

Plans are coming together for the trip to AR. Details to follow.

Monday, February 20, 2006

To eat, or not to eat: It really isn't a question.

I did a nice 5 hour ride today. Dan, Danielle and I started out from downtown and headed toward Egypt Valley. The weather wasn't bad, around 27F with some significant wind. I don't like to do long ride when the temps are below 32F, because my Perpeteum freezes. Today, I brought a bunch of trail mix and peanut bars. Plenty of calories, but not as easy to access as a nice bottle of Perpeteum.

We spun at a fairly easy pace for the first two hours. We did a bunch of dirt road (TI training!) that were covered with ice. There were a few scary moments where traction was nothing but a fond memory. Nobody kissed the pavement, and we made it to the trailhead.

The trail surface was nice, considering the time of year. There was less than 4 inches of snow on the ground, and the main line on the trail was nicely packed. Any time I got off line, however, the drag increased significantly. The climbs were brutal. I was running a pretty tall gear and heavy, grippy tires. Egypt Valley is not a killer trail, but I could tell early on that I would be feeling it later.

I knew I wasn't eating enough. I had plenty of Gu2O, but it was hard to get to the trail mix and bars I brought. I ended up taking off my outer layer, and my food was in the pockets of that jacket. I ate at breaks, but we didn't take many. I just decided to suck it up and keep going.

We spent a little under two hours on the trails. Dan was looking strong (as always), but Danielle and I were both talking about how out climbing legs were pretty well shot.

It turns out that Danielle was fibbing.

We had two substantial road climbs on the ride how. We all made it up the dirt road climb, with me bringing up the rear. The pavement climb is where Danielle pulled out all the stops. She powered up that climb like nobody's business. I was hanging on for dear life. Dan tried to pull ahead to block the wind for Danielle for a bit, but she just turned up the power another notch. I held her wheel all the way to the top, but at that point I was fried. Home was about five miles away, and I knew I would be taking it easy the rest of the way.

I got home and just collapsed! My wife was in the middle of cooking up some amazing pasta dish for dinner, and I felt much better after I got some real food in my tummy.

The ride was great training. I thought I could fake it with the food, but it just didn't work out. That is a good reminder

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Weekend Update

Seems the weather has put a bit of a wrench into my riding plans.

Yesterday was the singlespeed nation ride. Five people showed up; Dan, Nate, Me, Tim, and Tim's Friend. Several people show could have been there decided it was too cold. You know who you are, Chambers Family.

It was very cold, with a very cold north wind. Things were unpleasant riding on the road. Once we got to the singletrack, however, things were fine. I ended up taking off my goretex jacket because I was too warm. We ended up with about two hours of riding.

Dan ripped the chainring bolts out of his chainring and had to walk back to the shop. He claims it was the fault of alloy chainring bolts and very cold weather. I choose to blame it on his massively over-developed thighs. He looks like those Polish speedskaters that you might see at the olympics!

I spent half the ride staring up at the sky, wondering how I ended up on my back. Yes, there was some ice on the road. I lost it three times due to ice, and once or twice on the trail. I usually don't crash that much, but I just couldn't keep the rubber side down yesterday.

The new parts of WI worked great! Plenty of drag in the new freewheel, but that is to be expected. The cranks and chainring worked great. Very stiff. I have to decide if I want to replace the cranks on the main bike as well.

Today I was supposed to ride the KissCross Allycat race. It was canceled. Dan and I were gonna ride anyway. I headed down to the start point, but no Dan ever showed up. Shame on you, Dan. In Dan's defense, it was very poor riding conditions. It was ten degrees warmer than yesterday, but the wind was stronger and there was quite a bit more snow. It greatly reduced visibility and did a good job of hiding the ice. I rode for an hour, and plan to ride a bit more on the trainer later.

I am still looking forward to the ride tomorrow. It is my long ride for the week, so I hope people show up to keep me company! Several endurance riders are supposed to show up. Unless they wimp out! A report will follow.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Some weather we're having, eh?

Today, it rained, sleeted, snowed, thunderstormed, and hailed. I swear, I was waiting for blood to start falling from the sky.

Tonight, the temps are going to plummet. Tomorrow we are expecting the lowest windchills that this area has experienced in several *years*. Not great riding weather.

That being said, I have quite a bit of riding planned for the next few days. Nothing much tomorrow, but I will be outside in the cold on Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Singlespeed Nation ride on Saturday, Kisscross ride on Sunday, and the Dan "The Man" Jansen DeathMarch Supercross Extravaganza! ride on Monday.

This week, I rode on Tuesday and Thursday. High-speed, low-resistance work on Tuesday and some leg-grinding resistance work tonight. I also put my back-up bike back together. The White Industries hub, freewheel and cranks look awesome on the ti frame. I plan to ride that bike on Saturday and maybe on Sunday as well, if the weather is crummy. I'll have an initial review of the parts next week. I might even bring a camera this weekend, but don't hold your breath...

As you may recall, I was supposed to be on my way down to Florida right now for the Razorback. That fell through, but it is all for the best. I have just a touch of a sore throat, and that would have hurt my performance. Also, now I get to go to Arkansas with Dan and Nate for four days of Total Singlespeed Action in early March! More details to follow.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Back in the Saddle

Did a nice six hour ride today. I was inside, because I just didn't feel like dealing with the cold. Turns out that it got fairly warm out, and there was some sun. Now I wish I'd have ventured out...

Riding inside let me watch a dvd that Becky borrowed from a coworker. Called "Hell on Wheels", it is a documentary about the 2003 Tour de France. Becky and I were in France for that tour, so I was hoping for some footage of us on Tourmalet. No such luck. It was still fun to watch. It was shot by a German film crew, and the main subjects were the members of T-mobile. I think Lance was only in the frame for less than 5 minutes of the 2-hour show. Lots of behind-the-scenes stuff. Perhaps one too many shots of Zabel getting a rubdown with nothing but a towel over his junk, but what are you gonna do? The man needs his rub-down...

Some bad news; I won't be going down for Razorback after all. My ride situation broke down last week, and I'm just not interested in making the trip solo. That does free up a day of vacation to use later in the year, and I don't mind spending all the money for what would have been in essence a long training ride. Still, I feel like I am in pretty good shape for this time of the season, and I think I could have done well. Maybe next year.

Back to normal training this week. The legs and lungs felt good today. The weather is returning to normal, so I fear that my rides outside will be somewhat limited, at least in duration. I hate having my food freeze. Perhaps this is a good time to experiment with more solid food?

Also, I should get my built wheel shop this week. I need to make sure I have a gear combo that involves minimal rotation of the eccentric on the WI eno disk hub, as I want to run rear disks without using the eccentric adaptor. Time will tell. I also plan to install the eno cranks this week. If all goes well, I will use the spare bike for the outdoor ride next weekend. Perhaps I will even post some pics!

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Easy Week

This is my rest week. Yesterday I did an easy hour on the trainer. High cadence with low resistance was the order of the day. Quite a change from my normal tuesday interval session.

For those of you keeping score, I was mostly right about Grey's Anatomy: The 'code black' was an unexploded rocket lodged in some guy's chest.

I'll do another easy day on Thursday. Satuday I'll be back to work with a six hour ride. I hope it will be outside, but the weather does not look good. We are expecting lots of snow Thursday to Friday.

Sunday, February 05, 2006


Did one hour recover today; nice and easy. Did a little work on the backup bike. Turns out I need to get a pin spanner to tighten the lockring on the ENO cranks. Not a problem--I need to visit the bike shop this week anyway.

Watching the Superbowl now. Not a great first half, but the Rolling Stones had be cracking up at halftime. How old are those guys? And how much did they get paid for that performance? I just don't get it...

I'll be up kind of late tonight, since my wife will want to watch Grey's Anatomy. Looks like an interesting episode; something about "Code Black". I'm betting on either a bomb or bioterrorism.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Schedule Change

Instead of doing my long ride today, I decided to reschedule it for next Saturday. That allowed me to spend some time with my wife. This works out well, since she will be out of town next weekend.

I did two hours on the trail today. The weather was great; just above 32F. I was able to wear lightweight tights, three breathable layers on top, and my Lake boots. It felt like spring.

The trail was in good shape, at least for February. Some mud and sand was in evidence, but overall it was great. It was great to be on the trail and not just pounding the pavement. I'd like to put in some long hours on the trail next weekend if the weather permits. I hope to have a bunch of new parts installed on the back-up bike, and I'd like a long trail ride to break them in. I am also thinking about bringing the back-up bike down to florida for Razorback. It all depends on if I can get the new wheel built in time to get some test miles in before I have to leave. We'll see...

Thursday, February 02, 2006


Didn't ride tonight. Had to clean the house, and then I had to go drink a few beers with the teammates. Not fake "drink the beer but really I trained all night" but actually I drank some beers. It was a good time. I hope to make up the lost riding time on Sunday.

My pal Dan just got a new Niner. I plan to ride it at the earliest opportunity. He says it is schweet like honey. I am still not sold on the whole 29er thing. They seem slow up hill, and slow to get up to speed in general. I guess this Niner is fine like wine. We'll see...

A bunch of new parts from White Industries arrived the other day. I was showing some of them off at the bar tonight. Many people were envious. All the parts made it home again, but not because some people didn't try to swipe them. You know who you are, Dan... :)