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!