Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Back on the bike, and in the gym, and on the mat...

Yesterday was a good day. It started with a yoga class at River City Bikes. Nothing like 75 minutes of stretching and strengthening to get the day started right! I can really feel the difference that yoga has made in my cycling; my core is stronger than ever, even if my legs and lungs have some catching up to do. Yoga will be my secret weapon this season. Thanks to Ellee for getting me started and keeping me going!

I set out for what I thought would be a nice 3-hour ride in the afternoon. It turned into a 5-hour ride. The one big climb on the course was gravel. Well, it should have been gravel, but recent rains made it more like mud. Thick, sticky mud. It was a long slog up that hill, and it turned into kind of a long slog along the ridge line as well. Good training, but it did mean I coasted in slightly after dark.

A few quick bites of food, and it was off to the climbing gym! I started climb outside this summer and really enjoyed it. Climbing indoors isn't quite as much fun; I don't like following the established routes. But it is good cross-training, and I look forward to doing some more challenging climbs outside in 2010. So it was 2 hours in the gym, climbing and hanging out with friends.

Training starts in earnest next week. My post card didn't get to Iowa in time, so I don't know if I will get to race TransIowa this year. If not, I might look for some other long distance event to fill that hole.

Friday, November 20, 2009

And so it begins...

I sent in a postcard to register for Trans Iowa. Assuming I get in, that means a winter of training. At least I won't be training alone; Ellee wants to ride along and plans to contest the Dirty Kanza, another race to which I hope to pay a return visit.

The white singlespeed cross bike was sold, and a nice Surly Long Haul Trucker took its place. I am using it for commuting, but also hope to do some touring with it as well. I have less than 100 miles on it so far, but it seems like a solid bike. Heavy, but solid.

I plan to use this space as I have in the past; stories about training and racing. Now that some races are on the schedule, there should be more bits and pieces to share. If that sort of thing interests you, stay tuned!