Sunday, June 26, 2011

On my own

Well I don't talk about my cycling coach much. Mostly because I find it terribly lame when people feel the need to talk about their coaches all the time. But I have been working w/ a guy for a couple of years and he's moving up and on in his career as a coach. He basically coaches on his own, but he's a pro cyclist and knows a lot of good workouts. Plus he lives in the Indy area, so he understands what I have to deal with in terms of weather (so he's not sitting in California in Feb telling to go out and do a 4hr endurance ride). The price he charges is waaaay lower than any other coach. (period) One might say it's too good to be true and can't last forever...that person would be right.
Anwho, since he got picked up by a top coaching firm, his price is tripling. And I can't hang w/ that. So I'm going to have to start fending for myself. Sure, it's nice to have a week's workouts in my inbox every morning, but I feel like having been coached for a couple of years that I am well enough equipped to make due on my own.
I got some good workouts and my swimming in this past week. It's only been a week of swimming (4 sessions now) but I rally think this is going to help me overall with flexibility and strength of secondary muscles. And I'll have one of the fullest tans at any bike race.
As my own coach I do feel very in need of a rest week. But i have the State TT in a few weeks, so I need to plan w/ that in mind. After that I do plan to take it a little easy and start looking ahead to CX.
It has been raining a lot here, and while that sucks for many reasons, it's good for this little tree that friend and I planted in our front yard.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Rolling the dice at French Lick

This weekend was the DINO MTB race at French Lick Casino Resort. Dice were being rolled inside and outside the gambling floor. It was a rainy, stormy morning and no one was really sure if this race was going to happen or not. There were no updates saying it would be cancelled, but none saying it was on either, so we rolled the dice and headed for the venue.
It rained the entire drive down, but stopped when we got there, about an hour before start time. Needless to say the trail was a muddy mess, but the race was on.
This race starts on the driving range of the golf course, which was mostly standing water; it made for an interesting first few minutes.
Our race was 3 laps and about 3/4 of the way through the first lap another storm came through and it poured rain for about 20minutes or so. We were in the woods, so the rain was hampered by the trees, but the train was running water in many places. Then after it stopped raining the course turned into thick nasty "peanut butter" mud. It was a tough day.
I rode well and squeaked out 2nd in my race. I entered the woods 5th (I think) and moved up steadily and even led for portions. But in the end the winner put about a minute into me; he's faster than me. I had a good race though.

The problem w/ these kinds of races is they pretty much mandate a bicycle overhaul afterwards, which is a pain. (side note: the night before, even before it started raining I put on wet condition tires just in case. Look at my tires in the above pic: they're totally clean while everything else is covered. Score on tire choice!)
In training news I officially began my assault on low back/hip and shoulder/neck pain today: I started swimming. I swam for about 10years of my life, but haven't been in a pool for laps" in about 7yrs. I swam around 1600meters today which is about a mile. I have to admit, I felt really good in the water and swimming felt great on my body. I'm going to try to get in 2-3 sessions a week from now through August in hopes of strengthening my neck/shoulders and hips/hip flexors. I'm kind of excited about it, I mean, I look dynamite in a 'speedo,' so why wouldn't I be? Plus I really think it's going to do me good.
Time will tell...

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Peace and Love my Brothers and Sisters

This is what I've felt like for a week now. Not because I haven't showered and stopped wearing shoes, but because my right hip has been bugging the crap out of me (get it, "hippie?") Okay, lame joke. But last Tuesday while doing some high intensity intervals the muscles of my right hip flared up. These things happen and I try not to worry much about it; and this particular 'tweeker' has gotten better every other day or so, it's just taking longer than usual. I my general hip issues are a perfect storm of cycling, standing at work, leaning, lifting, sitting, basically being a living human. Bummer. I will say this though, today, one week from the inception, I feel much better than any of the previous days. Let's hope it lasts.
This passed week wasn't all that eventful on my end. Same old/same old. Of course that's only on my end; there's a girl missing from this town. Very weird situation. I can't help but think there's more going on here than a run-of-the-mill abduction. There's a lot of people on this case though, they'll figure it out.
As for me, I just rode and worked. That's about it. This week will be similar. Though tonight is a Tuesday Night Time Trial (let's hope my hip can hang w/ this) and this weekend is another MTB race.
I had just one 40k TT planned prior to the State Championship TT, which I would rather have more than just one, but the one that fit into my schedule got rescheduled for after the State Champ race. So that makes 0 opportunities to race 40k before the States. So I'm thinking about going up to the Monrovia 40k course and doing one on my own just to get the effort/time in. We'll see.
That's it for now. See you's!

Monday, June 06, 2011


I think I use that post title (or something very similar) once a year, but for some reason a big long string of letters abbreviating something kind of cracks me up.
Anywho this week's lead up was to the DINO MTB race at Brown County State Park; my first MTB race of the year (and really my 2nd MTB ride of the year). My fitness is good, but I was a little worried about my ability to handle a bicycle going 20+mph on a trail. But I made major equipment changes this past winter/spring so I was excited to race on my new setup.
This off road race starts on a ~1/5mile road climb; a nasty one at that. It would be hard enough on a road bike, but racing that climb on knobby tires and w/ suspension is way difficult. But I'm pretty confident in my road climbing so I wasn't overly worried. Plus I know there's usually 1 or 2 guys who shoot up the first pitch like a rocket, only to blow sky high shortly thereafter. So I rode hard and stayed in good position, but didn't panic when people going mad; I just stayed steady-hard. I went into the trail in 3rd position and quickly took over 2nd. I held second for most of the first lap but was being closed on by someone. Heading into the second lap I let him pas me, but held onto his pace for a good portion of lap #2. He eventually gaped me on a decent and I settled into my own rhythm in 3rd place. In about the same place that I was overtaken the previous lap, 4th place was breathing down my neck. We were close enough to a climb that I did not plan to let him pass, as I assumed I could climb faster than him and re-gap him. However, as I was thinking of all this my under-seat bag (which is probably 12years old) was coming un-velcro'd form my seat. Next thing I knew it was in my wheel and I had to stop to get it out. Boom! there I went onto 4th place. I tried to shove the bag into my jersey pocket but it wouldn't fit. So I had to get the straps sorted out and re-attach it. Boom, boom, boom, there go 3-5 more people. I considered just tossing the bag, but I KNEW 100% of I did that I WOULD get a flat requiring me to need the tube and air canister in it. So I got it on and started chasing. But the damage was done. I ended up 8th. But I wasn't unhappy with that. I rode really well and felt really good.
When I got in I heard that Lindsay had won her race straight up. That pumped me up. For us mortals it takes a long time to get good at bike racing; there's just so much involved. She says her field wasn't as stacked as usual, but maybe she's starting to get it.
Sorry I don't have any sweet photos, but no one really takes pictures at DINO races anymore.
My training is becoming a little more focused on the State Time Trial championship, but I'm going to do a few more MTB races through the summer. It's pretty fun really.