Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Full on winter

Snow, cold, we got it all.

Old school MTB pic. From the Terre Haute race course, which is now retired. Which is fine w/ me because that place was ALWAYS muddy. And it was in Terre Haute, and Terre Haute sucks.

Soooo, yeah, it's winter around here for sure. My training volume has been considerably up from "normal" to get in some serious off season hours. I have been sprinkling in some intensity here and there too. I'm thinking after next week, I'm going to try to arrange a slightly lower volume week, as that will end a four week period of high volume. And I'm tired from it.
I've been on the trainer several times, but have gotten in a lot of outside riding too. I've been on my TT bike on trainer, which is now set up for UCI legality which is pretty different, position wise, than it was. But 1) I hadn't ridden my TT bike since September and 2) I made sure to have it set up for UCI regulation BEFORE getting on it this year so I wouldn't have a chance to re-acclimate to the position; I'd just get used to the new position. I have to say, it feels seamless and I don't see any difficulty w/ it.
Well, happy new year everyone. I'm out for now. Be safe.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas all!

This old school pic was taken in December of 2001, according to its "properties" tab.
The little black cat weighs ~20lbs now and he was a kitten there. Plus this was a few years before Lindsay and I met, and we now have three cats (those two plus one).
Anywho, Merry Christmas and happy holidays everyone. Every now and again I'll have a moment where my mind is blown by how quickly the years seem to be flying by. It's big markers like Christmas that trigger this. I'm 31yrs old, but I feel like a responsible 19yr old or something.
Be safe this season (and always)!
(sorry for the off-cycling-topic blog, but whatever)

Saturday, December 19, 2009

The solstice is in a few days...

...but it's winter.
I'm kind of digging the old school photo theme, and I have a lot (though most are MTB), so I'm going to keep w/ it for awhile.
This me out-kicking some chump for probably, like, 17th place in an Ohio Valley Spring Series Cat 4 race or something. It's at Hueston Woods in Oxford, OH (one of my favorite Spring races), but that's all the info I have attached to the pic.
I did one of the higher volume weeks of my year this week. And while didn't do any intensity, hours on hours of "endurance" riding in the cold wears me out. Actually, the way my schedule was set up this week, I had to several split sessions, where I was riding in the morning and then again at night after work. I also sneaked in a run and a couple weight sessions. I did ride outside today (Sat). ~1.5hrs in the falling snow. It was pretty and all, but I got much wetter than I expected to.
This weekend, Lindsay and I are trekking to Frankfort for a Christmas get together w/ my family. It should be nice. The holiday season rarely fails to stress me out, but that's life (for me anyway).
Enjoy your holiday(s) everyone. Be safe, etc.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Off season IS ON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Here's a cool old pic. This is from Winona Lake in Warsaw, IN. Pretty sure 2004. Muddy XC race. Actually, I remember this race because Scott Hart from Decline Magazine was there covering the race weekend for another, now out of print magazine called 26. Anywho, he is a buddy and took a crap load of pics of me racing, but didn't use any of them! As memory serves, he ended up using a full page shot of Miso the dog for the cover of the story.
So, the off season is officially kicking. That means lots of training hours, two-a-day workouts and hoping to ride the mojo wave as long as possible. My moj is working right now, so I'm feeling good. It has been a cold December here, but since I took second week off (which was the crapper week [so far]) I'm hoping for enough good days to get out for some QR's (quality rides). I've smoked a few trainer workouts already, but I haven't' started doing intervals yet. Intervals make riding a trainer better because it breaks up the time spent. But, having power on the trainer makes huge difference too, as you have something to aim for.
The 2010 racing schedule(s) are starting to pop up here and there. The DINO MTB schedule is fully up and there are a handful of road races up too.
There are some races I'm 100% in for, but I'm not worrying about a schedule yet; no need to mess w/ all that now.
otherwise, not much to report, just wanted to update y'alls.

Friday, December 11, 2009

A few STG pics

I haven't gotten any pics of Storm the Greens yet, but I found a few to link to. This is early on, I'd say lap 2, Prior to getting a gap. This is later Still working on getting a gap, trying to shake the Red Zone guys. This is finally Getting the gap. These Red Zoners just didn't have the power on the opened sections that I did, so I was able to motor away from them every lap. I knew it was going to stick, it just took a few laps of them chasing back on to tire them out.
I have not "turned a pedal in anger" this entire week (well, I guess I was kind of angry to have to commute by bicycle in the cold/wind/snow on Tuesday!).
I have been sleeping in, stretching really well, and I started in with some VERY LIGHT weight lifting Wed. I'll lift 3x this week (Wed, Thurs and Sat) to get my body used to it. Then I'll lift ~2X/week for a few months.
I did, this week, spend some time (and $$) getting my time trail bike UCI legal (click here if you care to know what that means). I plan to race Nationals this year and it's sanctioned by the UCI, so my bike had to be modified. I didn't really want to spend the money during the holiday season, but I don't want to get re-accustomed to the "old" set up just to have to change it; rather I want my first ride on it to be of a new setup, so I can be used to it (I haven't ridden my TT bike since Sept).
Also, I meant to shout out to Gerraint Parry announcing at ~most of~ the 2009 OVCX series. He has basically become the voice of Midwest cyclocross. And the best thing for us is he's a friend of ours, so we get hella call outs at the races. The G&G team (Gerraint and Gatch) made for an awesome season. Truly the Phil and Paul of U.S. Midwest cycling.
Sunday is gluttony/laziness...Monday is 2010 training.
One last thing: is this not the most god-awful Pro team bike ever???

Sunday, December 06, 2009

OVCX 2009

What a season! Basically, I came into the series w/ no real expectations, and hence no real confidence. If you'd have told me I'd win the series overall, I'd have had a hard time believing you.
I did 12 races this season, won 4, and was on the podium for 4 more, and 3 of the 4 that I wasn't on the box were national level 2/3 races (the other 1 was the first race of the year where it poured rain the entire race and I was happy to have finished [I got 4th]). This consistent racing sent me into the final race of the series with a chance, albeit slim, of winning the series. I had to have a great race, and Andrew Dillman of Louisville, had to have a bad one (on his home course). My good fortune on the day was his bad, as he crashed early in the race and chased through the entire race, but couldn't catch me. He had two teammates sandwiching me for a few laps putting on some serious pressure, but I eventual got them dropped and rode to another solo victory.
Below is the race podium. Josh rolled in third!
The course was thawing from the overnight freeze during our race and some spots were very muddy/slippery. There were a few spots where riders were falling everywhere, so these had to taken very slowly. I was able to get in 2 pre ride laps and knew exactly what needed to be done; I was in complete control of my race. I did fall twice, these things will happen, but I never panicked and rode to my strengths.

This is the overall Series podium. Third O.A., Josh Johnson wasn't present. He put up a good fight for me all year and made it a great series battle. Too bad he couldn't stand on the O.A. box, as the three of us (Dillman, Johnson and I) battled like cage fighters all season.
So with that I'm taking this week off (of riding anyway, I plan to start lifting), and then next week, it's 2010 training. Maybe inside mostly because today it snowed! I'm curious to see if I can damage Cat3 road fields in 2010 like I did CX fields this year. And maybe get some solid MTB results too. Then next year for CX I will be a "forced upgrade" to Cat2. Which means longer races and faster competition. As of right now I'm excited for this and say "BRING IT!" We'll see how I'm thinking in Oct. of 2010 though.
I should have some pics from Storm the Greens pretty soon. The Photag took my email address and said he'd send me some, but I can find them if not ( I know you're all dying to see!).
Anywho, I understand there's no "real" glory in winning a Cat3 anything, but I'm very pleased w/ my season and want to say "thanks" to everyone who cheered/yelled and encouraged/trained w/ me.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Let you see my what? (ya ya grill, ya ya ya grill)

I don't know what it means for this weekend, but Emily brought in a box of Sesame Street letter cookies (she eats baby food[s]), and the first thing I grabbed out of the box was two letters stuck together spelling "CX." I made a sick grill out of it and HTFU'd for a pic. My competition should be very afraid.

Seriously though, I have felt really good this week training. I did my normal ~1hr recovery ride Monday and felt fine. Plus my Monday evening run went well too. I felt crappy when I woke up Tuesday, but dragged it (my butt) out for some hard intervals and while I can't say felt invincible while doing them, I did hit all the numbers (and it was cold [below freezing when I started] which makes it that much more difficult to go hard). Today (Wed) I went out for a good steady paced gravel road romp and felt/rode quite well. I have a road ride/eve run tomorrow and then E-Z Friday spin, then that's it going into the OVCX finale.
I need to clean up my bike before the weekend too, as I haven't cleaned it for a few weeks and I don't want to show up looking like a chump. Muc-off makes me show up looking like a champ, even if I end up riding like a chump!

I found this (one more) pic of me in the sand from this past weekend (light on the bars, weight back). I kind of feel narcissistic posting so many pics of myself, but it's my blog, so whatever!

Monday, November 30, 2009

John Bryan Park CX photo dump

Here are some pics form the John Bryan CX in Yellow Springs.

Crappy lighting, but this is the sand pit #2, I think.

Somewhere 0n course.


Better angle/lighting.

Being a good sport post finish, five-ing/"good job-ing" the people I lapped (2nd place wasn't through the line yet).

Also of note, my finish line shot was the pic used in the print edition of the Dayton news paper. Josh/Dan/Luther/Jake's mom gets this as her local paper and is sending me the page. It should be sweet.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving, OVCX #14 (win #2!)

For Thanksgiving Lindsay and I trekked up to my parents for the feast. My brother and his wife (Lisa) were there, so it was a good time to hang w/ everyone that I don't see all the time. It should go w/out saying that I ate a ton, which was awesome. It was a pretty uneventful day, but that's a good thing.
One event worth mention, however, is that my Brother, Dad and I went to the Frankfort Rural King after the T-giving meal. I thought it was pretty awesome that they have 200lb tubs of protein for only $40. But since it's only 24%, I'd probably have to get 4 of them. This may be a great way to bulk up though, lifting and consuming 200lb tubs of protein. I did score some knee-high rubber boots and PVC dipped work gloves for cold weather bike cleaning though. Pretty sweet find.
Morning of T-giving I got up early and went to the BBC Turkey Trot 5k. It was a cold morning, but I pulled up was locking my bike to a post when the dude shouted "1minute till start." Perfect timing, as I didn't want to stand around in the cold waiting. I quickly found my way around all of the back-of-the-packers and up to my friend Sarah Sanderhan and Buzz, their 3 legged dog. I ran w/ them for most of the run, but decided to light it up in the last 1/2mile or so (okay, I just wanted to beat the 3 legged dog). I ran a 24min flat. Not my best time in a 5k, but acceptable for a cyclist.

This weekend was stop #14 in the OVCX series in Yellow Springs, OH (yes, where Dave Chapelle lives). It's a long drive (3hrs on the dot), but once I got there I liked the course and was glad I made the trip. It was a super flat course w/ some single track, a double sandpit, and tons of really good turns.
This race was a dual series race (OVCX and Ohio Cap City series), so the call ups were not in the normal order. Several Cap city riders were called first, and I got the last spot on the front row. It was a long uphill road start, so I wasn't to worried, but when my name wasn't called for start after 6 or so guys, I got worried, but all turned out well. I went into the grass 4th wheel, immediately moved into 3rd, then a few turns later moved into 1st and never looked back. I gapped the field and rode it all the way from gun (whistle) to tape (line). While I'm not one to place a bunch of meaning into a win, it was extra cool to win today because two very good friends of mine were in town for Thanksgiving (their Mom lives near the venue in OH) and were their to watch.
They took a bunch of pics, including the podium shot I had Dan take on my phone. I'll have a bunch more after Luther gets them uploaded and sent to me.
It was a great day of racing and hanging out w/ friends. Great weather.
The drive home turned worse though. It rained most of the way and heavily at times. I had to get gas and was hungry for hot food, but there was no restaurant at the exit other than sit down places, so I got a hot dog from the gas station. It was soooooooo nasty; real bad idea. Then, I got caught up in two full blown traffic jams on 37 coming back to B-town. It took 4 hrs to get home.

Next weekend (12/6) is the OVCX finale in Louisville. I haven't raced this course yet this year, so I'm looking forward to it. This season has been long indeed, but I have been having a great year and tons of fun!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

A Tale of Two Races

It was the best of races, it was the worst of races. Not really, they were both pretty good, but that's a good title and a good opening line. And yes, one race was better than the other.

This weekend was the Indy double-header, stops #12 and 13, of the OVCX series. Saturday was a new Indy venue and the course hosted by Speedway Wheelmen, Southeastway Park. After pre-riding the course, I liked it a lot. It was full of turns, but set up really wide, so it had tons of good flow. It was mostly flat, except for one "wall" of run up hill that was a total bastard. Anywho, my two main rivals in the series were not at this race, but I never discount anyone w/ two wheels under them, so I felt confident, but knew I had to watch for others. I had a not-so-great start (missed my pedal and floundered w/ it for what seemed like forever) and left the start straight 3-4th wheel. I quickly got to the front, and had two in tow. So the three of us shortly became two, which after 2 or so laps became one: me. I stayed off solo for the rest of the race and rolled in for my first OVCX win!
There was no podium presentation here, but a few people snapped pics of me at the line. It was nice to finally get one.
Pic below is from Saturday, just somewhere on the course.
And here is a link to a really cool photo of the barrier/run up.

Sunday went well, but not as well. Sunday was the Brookside CX, which is a "classic" Indy course; it's been used for many, many years. it was set up a little but different this year, all positive in my opinion. Brookiside also served as the Indiana State Championships, a title I held a few years ago and wanted to regain. It wasn't to happen this day though. The course starts on a long road climb, so going into the tape there were a lot more people in the mix than usual. It took about 3/4 of a lap for me to get away form the field, catch Josh Johnson, on of the main rivals for the year, and start the racing between him and I. Once we got clear, we traded off the lead and rode a very good, very fair race (no one doing all the work, not pulling through, etc.) So with one lap to go it was going to be either he or I. I had my attack 100% planned out. One problem though: he had his planned too and his was to occur before mine. He caught me completely by surprise, by I was not willing to let it go. I chased hard and pulled him back w/in ~3-5seconds, but that's all you need to win. My hat's off to him, he was smarter and faster today (for my ego's sake, he did NOT race yesterday and I did, so he was fresher than I, but still, he killed it).
He took top podium spot and In State4 title. I got silver. The dorky looking kid in third has been racing 4's, but moved up for this race. The race was between JJ and I, but this kid came in third behind us, not bad.
Sorry about linking to these pics, but they're un-stealable, but worth checking out:
Click here for a lesson in poor barrier technique (note: I hit it at a bad angle and w/ traffic, lots of people were falling on this barrier)(click here for Josh's lesson is sweet barrier technique)
Approaching the same barrier solo, I hit it cleaner.

Fred Rose took a strong 2nd in his race, but was the 1st IN finisher, winning the In State title for his Cat. Props.
Also, Mike Sherer rode to a good 2nd in the Elites (also 1st IN), and this is only his second race back after 6weeks off from a clavicle.
Thanksgiving week! Remember to be thankful for all you have...like turkey, stuffing, cranberries, corn, rolls, noodles, green beans, pies, etc. Seriously.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Sympathy for The Devil?

This is a clip from the 2009 Tour of California press conference.
It's about 3.5minutes long and worth the watch for cycling fans. It's Lance Armstrong responding to a question from former pro cyclist turned sports reporter for The Sunday Times in London, Irishman Paul Kimmage.
I can't believe this wasn't more widespread of a clip. Armstrong says in it he admires "as men" a list of convicted dopers. He also says, in the context of a question about doping, that "we all make mistakes" and "should be able to go on w/ our jobs." Amazing; seems the high and mighty Armstrong my have some sympathy for these "devils."

My training week has gone okay, though not exactly as I had it planned. Car repair and rain forced the change of a couple of days, but I'm still right about where I should be heading into the double-header weekend. Bikes are ready too. Bring the pain!
I think I found a 5k to do on Thanksgiving before heading home for a feast. I always used to do Muncie's "Turkey Trot" (because it started a 1 minute walk from my front door), but I hadn't found one in Bloomington. It looks like the Bloomington Bagel Company is holding one that is no charge, no timing, no awards, but free coffee and bagels. Score. Just too bad I found about it this year; for the past several years I have wondered what kind of god-forsaken town doesn't have a "Turkey Trot," a "Drumstick Dash" or a at least a "Wing Fling." I ripped off a low 22 on the last 5k I did on what I was told was a hard course. We'll see what kind of damage I can on this bad boy!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Gators, etc.

A friend of mine was in New Orleans last week and called to ask if I wanted her to bring me anything. I gave her a vague description of a store and an even more vague (vaguer?) description of where it is. She totally found it based on my terrible directions and brought me some alligator jerky.

I stocked up on these every time I've been there (2 I think), but I never noticed two things about it: 1) the second ingredient is beef and 2) it's made in Michigan. Oh well, it's good stuff and good to have friends willing to do cool stuff like that. And at least the first ingredient is alligator.
This week was good training wise, but I opted not to race this weekend, as the OVCX race was far east in OH, almost to PA. It too the Indy guys right at 3hrs, so I'd have been looking at a 3+hr drive. Whew, that's a lot of car time. I was having some shooting knee pain Monday, so I decided to skip riding altogether Tuesday; I didn't want to push a potentially tweeked knee. Then Wed I went out for a sweet little gravel road ride solo. It was nice, and I rode fairly hard w/ no pain in said knee. Thursday I rolled w/ a small group and rode a good hard loop of ~2hrs, which blew up and ended up just two of us trading big hard headwind pulls. Sweet. Today RS and I put in a good solid 2.5hrs on the road w/ a lot of climbing. We rolled it pretty fast considering the hills.
Oh, I got all my runs in this week too and felt really good. I was worried about running on a knee that had felt bad, but it was not a problem at all.
This weekend's the big Indy double-header. Southeastway Park cross Saturday and Brookside Park cross Sunday. I've raced at Brookside many times, but SEW is new. 4 races left in the series, no more f***ing around!

Sunday, November 08, 2009

No one else in the picture

Now if I can just find the picture.

"No one else in the picture" is a reference to a chapter of Joe Parkin's book "A Dog in a Hat." Basically, the phrase refers to a win, where you are so far ahead of second place that when the picture of you crossing the line is shot, you're the only person in the photo; no one else in the picture.
I finally got a win this year, and it was of this type.
Saturday was race #2 in the Indiana Cup Series which is a series within the Ohio Valley Series.
I took the hole shot, traded the front w/ another guy for one lap, then got a gap and never looked back. I rode super hard the entire race and the way the course was set up, there were a lot of places to mark the gap you had, and mine was growing every lap. I had enough of lead to ease off on the final lap and roll in for a solo V.
My comrade and training partner Fred Rose took the same kind of "W" in his race; w/ no one else in his picture. Good weekend for Bloomingtonians in Indy.
We went over to Broadripple after racing to eat, etc and were stopped by two (2) funeral processionals. The took for ever, but I guess in a city that has, like, 200 murders/year, getting caught in only 2 processionals probably isn't too bad.
Today (Sunday) there was a OVCX race, but it was in Lexington, KY and I wasn't up for driving that far. So I opted for a longish road ride instead. After Saturday's race I had some pains in my right leg (upper and lower), and it was bothering some today too, but I rode super good despite. I didn't bring enough food for the ride (given the efforts required in the stiff headwinds), and I bonked pretty hard with about 1/2hr to go. I got recovery drink in me as soon as I got home, then ate some good recovery food.
I also got my CX bike all cleaned up, and since I'm not racing this weekend hopefully it will stay clean for more than a few days this time! All the maintenance required racing CX is about as exhausting as actually racing CX.
The photos mixed in here are from the second race of the series in Louisville on Oct 4. I just came across them though. They're taken by frame builder Tim O'donnell.
Oh, and if you gaze to the right, you'll see I'm now twittering, or tweeting, or whatever it's called when you waste even more time assuming people give a crap about what you're doing. Yeah, that's me.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Weekend pics

Here are a few pics from the Gun Club CX this past weekend:

The start (I'm dead center in orange/blue). Hoping the dude in green to my left doesn't take me out. I remember this guy before the start saying "how'd I get in the front row?" And me thinking 'I hope this guy can hold a line.' Apparently he couldn't.

Into the sand pit lap one: off the front (you can see the gap I'd created).


More barriers. This is a pretty good action shot of my awesome remount technique; I look like a rag doll being shaken.

Podium. I was cooling down on the road and missed my call to podium. I'd be standing where it says "Kenda" if I were more vigilant.

This weekend I think I am going to skip the Sunday OVCX race due to 1) it being in Lexington (far away) and 2)Lindsay wants the car to go ride MTB. So I am planning on going to an Indy CX race Saturday, and maybe doubling up and doing the Cat III race AND the Cat I, II, III race. Then riding long Sunday w/ RS. We'll see though, racing 2 races will be hard, seeing as sometimes I can barely stand after my race, let alone get back on and put forth that kind of effort again.
I also think my Dad is running a marathon in Indy Saturday so if it all works out time wise we may try to meet up w/ my parents somewhere for post race(s) food action.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Hammer, brake, slide, repeat

Today's OVCX race was a mud-fest. The title is about how it was ridden, hammer anytime you could, then as soon as you got speed, brake for a turn of some sort, slide into, through and out of the turn, then hammer again. It also featured multiple run sections (some that would have been ridable in dry conditions, some that were run ups no matter what), but given the mud your shoes picked up tons of ground and 1)weighed about 5x what they normally would and 2) made clipping back in pedals very difficult at times.
I snapped this pic of my pedal and front derailler cluster, which are pretty packed w/ mud.
Also, it was muddy enough that Scott Bond took a pit stop to hose off his bike and shoes mid race (he was having a crappy race and decided to have some fun by pit washing during his race, it was hilarious really).

All that said, I did have a very good race though. I took the whole-shot and opened up a significant gap on most of the field in the first lap. Just one other dude bridged to me, and he's beaten me every time we've raced (usually by a lot to boot), but I'm not going to stop trying. Basically it was he and I trading the lead until 2 to go and he pulled away for good; I just couldn't match him.
So I rode in for a solid second place. I still don't know what my gap on third was, so I just rode as hard as I could the whole time.
I was very happy with my race an very happy with my result.
I can usually gauge my effort afterwards by how bad I feel and for long I feel bad (what I have dubbed "Effort Sickness"). Today I felt really bad for about an hour or so. And it was the kind of bad where I'm not sure I'm going to be able to drive myself home. That means I went really hard. But I got feeling better. And I made it home.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Big pimpin???not so much!

So I'm building a "B" cross bike. On the cheap. Basically, when I got my new frame I sold my old one to a friend. Well, I ended up buying it back and am building my old cross bike back up as a pit bike for next to nothing money wise.
But just when I think I'm big pimpin stylee w/ a "B" bike, I peep this picture of Neils Albert at the Koppenberg Cross. Now my B bike will be distinguishable by it being a different model year, different color and totally different set up. But big Pro's have their bikes identical, so they can start on one and finish on another and not tell a difference. Due to this (and for the sake of the mechanic's dealing with their bikes) they put numbers one the headtube to tell one from another.
Long story, right? But if you look closely at the pic below, you see the Neils', bike has "5" on the headtube indicating this is not his "A" bike nor his "B" bike, but his "E" bike. Meaning he has at least 5 bikes in his quiver! Craziness.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Things that make you go "hmmm"

This came in the mail the other day.
So do I sign it, then a piano falls on my head or something? No thanks, I'd rather not enroll for accidental death; I'll take my chances.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Hilly Weekend

I measure my years in Hilly 100's. 1 more down.
The weekend was good, Saturday was cool and very windy, but Sunday was great. We were busy, as usual, but I think there were fewer people this year. We made a little less money than usual, but only a little.
It was mostly the standard issue repairs, but I snapped a photo of Josh doing our "big" repair for this year.
This dude's seatpost broke off and had to be sawed out. We had him go to the hardware store and get a straight hacksaw, but he got a cheap one and the carbon fiber was too tough for it and it dulled the blade before the post could be gotten through. We did not get him going (which is our overall goal, to get people going).
It was good weekend though. I got to see some people I don't see very often and it's nice to be out, somewhere different.


I was a little bummed to have to miss the USGP races n Louisville, but word is it was a total mud bath, so I guess if I had to miss any races, it's better to miss a mud fest. Pic below is my chum Fred Rose. Fred apparently was dealt race number 13. It is customary for a riders to pin on unlucky #13 upside-down, but Fred was risking it here. I'm way too superstitious to chance that.

In other Hilly news: Karen Bayne, who used to work with me at Bikesmiths and is a friend came to town for the ride. She moved to Northern Ohio for a teaching gig at a small college a year or two ago.
While riding Saturday morning she crashed into the back of a car and was badly hurt. She was in a coma for two days, has broken neck vertebrae (no paralysis though), broken ribs, broken knee cap, and lots of cuts. She regained consciousness yesterday (Monday) and was able to respond to doctors. It seems her cognitive function's will be return, hopefully to normal (at first there was wonder that IF she recovered, whether or not her cognitive function would return). I have been to visit her twice but she has been sleeping both times.
We're all hoping for a good and full recovery for her.

Which brings me to my final topic: today's workout. It looked like rain, so I suited up and went to a circuit I like to do intervals on that is fairly close to home. I was going to do 2x20min in my zone 3/4. First interval felt hard, but I hammered it out. I just figured I wasn't very warmed up and the second one would come easier. Not so. I was flailing like a rag doll and using all the positive self talk I could muster. Then at 10minutes in, it started raining, so I just rode the interval to the turn back into town and bagged it @ 12min. Fail. This is really the first interval workout I've totally screwed, so it's no big deal I'm sure, but it is a little discouraging.
Oh well, back to racing this weekend!

Friday, October 23, 2009


This was supposed to be a great picture of the Southern Indiana fall colors, it didn't really come out too good. It's pretty though, trust me.
The bad part of the fall down here is the roads are COVERED in leaves. And when it rains, like it did today, descents are treacherous. If taken very slowly, they're doable, but still dangerous. Careful, folks.
I ended up w/ a very solid training week, which will be a little short hours wise due to the weekend being completely void of riding in favor of working the Hilly 100. But w/ no racing this weekend, I wanted to have a good, hard week.
Well, I am out of time. Got to get ready for Hilly.
Talk to you's after the festivities!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Some Bloomingcross pics

Here are a few pictures from the Bloomingcross weekend taken by frame builder Tim O'donnell of Shamrock Cycles.

This is lap 1 , first corner. Note Josh's moto-stylee w/ the foot down corner. (this is the same corner I crashed in later, but on a much different line through it).

A few seconds later, same vantage point. MTB legend Mark Giganti goes "foot down" too.

Coming out of the woods section (smiling for the cam).

This is a really good pic; determined look.

C'mon Josh, first a foot down and now a tongue out? Time to tighten up your game!

Yesterday me and good group rolled out for a good, solid ~50miles. I haven't done a good hard group ride in weeks, since I have been attempting to do zone specific power training. It was just what I needed, as I have become a slave to my power meter as of late. Not that I mind staring at the PT (yet), but it was nice to just let it record and not pay attention to it.
Tonight it the local CX training race. Should be a good day for it!

Monday, October 19, 2009

OVCX #6 Bloomingcross

Man, 6 races in the books already. At least stop #6 was 2miles from my house!
I had a good race on my "home course." The course was not the course we have our weekly practice race on, but we had been making trips over to the race venue course to 1) get it broken in and 2) to get to know it.
The course started out with a (kind of) long and (pretty) steep paved climb. At the top of the climb was a narrow 180* onto the grass (and back downhill). I knew I had to get into that 180 among the firsts. I was second or third to the turn, but first guy bobbled and dabbed his foot, causing the rest of us to jam up. It was sorted out soon enough and I was sitting comfortably in second. I got feeling a little too comfortable (as in it felt too easy) and decided to take the lead and try to spread things out. I led for 1 lap, then relinquished the lead to Andrew Dillman, and he never looked back. I was then racing hard in second when I crashed very nastily on the fast downhill section. I landed hard on my left side, but was quickly up and riding. This fall, however allowed third place to close on me significantly. He soon passed me as I was trying to regain my rhythm and composer. It stayed in this order or the rest of the race, though I was closing on second in the final laps; 20 more yards of finishing stretch and I might have gotten him. I'm happy w/ third though. Can't complain on making a podium!
It was great weekend and cool to race CX here in town. Plus there were a lot of loc-dogs out cheering for me (and all the local riders). It was sweet.
Big ups to Fred Rose for an authoritative win in his race. Ryan Shanahan won his age race as well. Ryan Preske showed well on a CX bike he bought just a few days earlier! And NKOTCXB (new kid on the cyclocross block), Erik Hamilton once again KILLED his race. He stamped out a big 2nd in the elite men.
So I loafed it on running last week (as in I DIDN'T run last week) using recovering from the 3day race weekend as my excuse. Well, this week it's back to steady training, no excuses. I do have to miss racing this weekend due to the Hilly 100. I cannot miss the Hilly, because I make very good money in two days of work. Hard work, for sure, but good money for it.
My only "worry" is giving up my start position by missing these two races. I'm sitting 2nd or 3rd in the series right now and top 5 get front row starting position. This is a huge advantage. Missing these races gives the others free points. But there are possible scenarios where I remain top 5. We'll just see.
I'll post up some pics from Bloomingcross when I can find some.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

More weekend pics

Caitlin Coar, Erik Hamilton's girlfriend, was out over the weekend w/ her camera and got some good shots. These are all from the sand pit on Sunday.

This is, hands down, my new favorite racing pic of myself.

~halfway through sandpit #2.

Another great shot.
I tend to smile for cameras (if I can muster it) when I see them. I like shots 1 and 3 here because I didn't know I was being photo'd and they're just very expressive (ie: going hard, hurting and not sugar-coating it for the camera).

The barriers Sunday.

The two below are from Friday. Remember I said it was the muddiest CX race I've done? Check these out:Barrier #1

and #2. You can actually see mud and crap hanging off of my bike. And I'm obviously covered.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Cincinatti UCI Weekend

This weekend was the UCI three race weekend. We left Friday morning to get to my 1:30pm start. Forecast was for rain and it rained the whole way there. Pretty hard. And it had rained the entire day before. Needless to say the course was a muddy mess. Large portions of it were unrideable and we were told that large portions had to be re-routed to not completely destroy the park grounds. Friday was, without a doubt, the muddiest cross race I've ever done.
I had a good start and entered the course from the pavement ~5th or so. I rode at the front for a lot of the race, but after a while I had to just focus on not falling (which was not really possible) and keep moving forward in the deep, sticky mud.
I ended up 11th on the day. (it's worth noting that at these big UCI races, they run cat 2 and 3 in the same race, whereas "normally" the cat 2's race w/ the cat 1/2. So my 11th was overall, including cat2's.) So I was happy w/ that result.
My happiness is evident by my big smile, while completely covered head to toe in mud (photo G. Parry).

We stayed at the host hotel, which was a Radisson. They had a "wash station" (hose) set up in the parking garage, which was totally sweet. I brought my cleaning supplies and work stand, so I had it dialed.
We were on the 15th floor of this 18 floor hotel. Here are couple shots of the surrounding trees/hills/interstates from our balcony.

and this cool bell tower below.

Saturday's race was expected to be much better weather-wise (it couldn't really be worse). And while it had a couple muddy patches in the course, overall it was a great course. I really liked it and would really like to do it in ideal conditions; I think it would be super fast. I didn't know my start time while I was messing around during the other races, so I didn't eat what I normally do before racing and I had a shorter warm up than normal too. I still rode good and hard, though I felt a little flat. I ended up 12th.
Sunday was the race that I have done several times in the past. The course changes a bit year to year, but I generally know it. Plus I showed up early enough o ride 4 laps for pre-ride. The course was pretty fast overall, and dry for the most part, but did have a few "mud pits" as they were being called. It also had two sand pits (as did the previous day). This is of note because the sand, plus all the wet plus just general dirtiness, had my brake pads wore to next to nothing. I was a little worried going in that my brakes would fade from still-kinda-working status to sorry-dude status in the duration. I took off and had another great start. I rolled a good portion of the race in 4th and was eventually caught by a group of chasers. I sat in the group, which started to splinter w/ me toward the back. I attacked out of it and ended up 7th. I was very happy w/ that result and the race overall. I need new pads though.
Big props to Ryan Knapp and Mike Sherer for showing big time in the Pro races all three days. I left before the end of Sunday's race, but I guess they both crashed and both broke a collar bone each! The both had good races all three days and were mixing it up w/ the big pro guys. Bummer they crashed out on the last day.
Props to Fred Rose for bringing it in the Masters race all three days.
BIG props top Eric Hamilton for starting form the back of the 2/3 (my race) and winning Sat and Sun. This guy is a cross machine. he's new to the discipline and reminds me of James Stewart in his early motocross days: super fast, but out of control. he's getting it down though. Look out for him in the 1-2 races here coming up.
And a huge shout out/thanks to Gerraint Parry, the hardest working man out there all weekend. GP announced all three days, and every race. That's like, 10 races per day between all cats, age groups and sexes. He always keeps a keen eye for his locals and makes sure they get their shout outs. Thanks G.

I'll post up some more pics as they are available..I'm sure there's more out there.