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Showing posts from April, 2013

A taste of Whiskey

After a very stressful trip from Colorado Springs to Prescott, we finally rolled into town and got settled. Hotel, unload car and such, then time to ride! We parked near Whiskey Row, stashed our map and cue sheets, then headed off into the woods. Our plan was to pre-ride the 15 proof course, check out some of the single track and get an idea of what we were in for. Neither one if us had any clue at to the terrain, dirt or even riding style of the area. It felt really good to get out of the car and ride, even if the first miles were solid climbing. The in-town turns weren't marked, but the directions were really clear.

We climbed up from the car for over four miles, then turned off the main road and continued climbing on a jeep road. Through a youth camp, across a small stream and more climbing. We knew the course was a little different and a little longer then prior years, but never noticed it. The corners were marked with flags now, negating the need for our directions. After nea…

Snowflakes and Sunshine

Not the smartest thing I've ever done, but it was certainly fun! At least as fun as a Max interval workout gets....

While we did get some snow on Wednesday, and the wind and cold were more like December weather, I held out hope of getting outside to do my workout Thursday. The trails were muddy but the roads were clear. As long as they stayed clear and the wind didn't pick up, id be good to go. When I drove between my two buildings the sun was shining and it was pretty nice out - just cold. Then the clouds closed in over lunch and snowflakes started flying. Not fair! Nick had the spin bikes in the garage, all ready to go. I was tempted, but knew Coach Adam would want the power numbers for this workout regardless of where I rode. But I tried - texted him and said I was gonna just ride in the garage. Nope - got the text back "power please." So I started to get ready to head to CTS to use the computrainer. Somehow, as I was getting orginized, we decided it was a waste …

Clouds and Sun

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Saturday April 13th - with forcasted highs in the 60s - sounded like a great day to head west into the mountains. But when we woke up, heavy fog blanketed the sky. So much for sunshine all day! Undeterred, we added some more warm clothes to our Osprey packs and pedaled off into the mists. Nick and I were meeting some of the guys for a long day on the bike. Drew rode over to Stratton with us and Shad and Adam J were waiting. The five of us rode straight up the Chutes - taking advantage of the quiet trails. (I aloe think it was because two of them didn't realize there were better ways to get to the top.) I quickly settled into my place for the ride - dangling off the back, pedaling steady to keep them in sight. Riding my Fate, I had the added benifit of my power numbers - I think I was able to do a better job of trying to keep up because I paced myself better. I didn't blow up on the chutes, trying to keep up with them. As a result, when we hit Gold Camp, I was ready to go. A ve…

Being Lazy

I can tell I haven't been very good lately. I've been very lazy about doing yoga, my lifting and my back exercises. I know why I stopped, but haven't a good excuse as to why i never resumed. I was sidelined by my crash way back in January. I couldn't put any weight on my right shoulder, so lifting and yoga was out. And I had been doing so good - finally getting consistant with the off the bike training. But after the crash, I couldn't. And I never got back into the groove with it. I got lazy, sleeping in and not doing my exercises. With the taper and recovery weeks before and after 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo, it wasn't much of an issue. But then the training started again. And I noticed right away that I'd been lazy. Wow. Hips tight, neck tight, shoulders stiff and back aching. All things I could have prevented had I just kept at all my off bike workouts. And now, with my first big race coming up, it might be too late. I can't be lazy anymore - there ar…

My Boston - The World's Marathon

I may be a mountain biker now, but growing up I was a runner. My mother was a runner and she was my inspiration. As a child, I couldn't keep up with her and thought she was super fast. She ran in the 100th Boston Marathon and I knew what my goal would be. When I was old enough, I wanted to run in Boston. And it would be even more special if I was able to run Boston with her. I was lucky - I qualified for the 2000 edition of the Boston Marathon my first attempt. Running a 3:39:55 at the 1999 Walt Disney World Marathon, I was in. Now it was time to get Mom her time - a 4:05 marathon. She hadn't made it at Disney. We tried again at Grandma's marathon, but a foot injury prevented it. After her foot healed, we had enough time. One more shot, the 2000 Desert Classic Marathon. I paced her to a 3:57 marathon and the race officials printed out her race results. Three days before the entry deadline and she was in! We would run the 2000 Boston Marathon together.

And we did - at leas…

April Showers...

Or the blizzard that fizzled. The forecast last Tuesday had dire predictions on snow, wind and Arctic temperatures. Schools closed early and I was debating doing my intervals inside on Wednesday! But alas for the weatherman, they only got two of the three right. It was bloody cold and the wind was miserable. I really had to bundle up when I was running in the morning - like it was still winter, not the beginning of April. And had we actually gotten snow, it really would have been bad, with the wind and bitter cold. But no snow, so this was the April Blizzard that wasn't. That meant I got to ride outside for my workout...

Still, it was winter cold in Wednesday, so Nick decided we'd do the workout on a different hill the I usually use. Long enough for the intervals, but protected from the biting wind. It was a little steeper of a hill, so I was struggling a little. I've been working on keeping a higher cadance up with my intervals and this hill was steep enough I really coul…

The Politics of Pedaling

It has been a crazy, kinds stressful week. It all started an email on Friday from USA Cycling regarding a UCI rule I hadn't even heard about until this year - 1.2.019. In short, it says that anyone holding an international racing license is forbidden to race in any non sanctioned events. Well, as a pro mtb racer, I have an international license, so I got one of those emails (Nick, as Cat 1/SS racer did not.) First reaction? What the hell? Second reaction - what is going to happen if I proceed with my schedule as planned? I then sat back and watched social media explode with comments. Some well worded, some dripping with anger and some sarcastic dismissals. All weekend was like that, since the email went out on Friday the 5th.

Then came Monday and the verbal warfare picked up. People had had the entire weekend to think about what they wanted to say and an entire weekend to stew in anger. I kept quiet, watching the riders and race promoters sparing with USA Cycling. I don't …

Back in the Peloton

Back to the skinny tires for Saturday's training ride. Despite subtle hints and outright pleading, Coach Adam insisted that I join the roadies for the Saturday road ride. I offered all kinds of reasons why a mountain bike ride would be better... I would be riding my Fate, we'd have power data. There would be a large crowd and the pack could be sketchy. I hadn't done a road ride in over a year and my skills were a little off. I didn't need to risk a crash and getting injured. But for every good reason why not, Adam had an equally valid reason why I should. So finally I caved and made plans for some skinny tire suffering.

I was very nervous about the ride and did a little longer pre ride cruise to shake things out. Remembering that my pedals only had one side was a big thing! Got to the meeting spot about 9:55 and waited. There were already about 10 people waiting. I knew there would be more coming out of the cracks as roll out approached. Riders appeared in twos and thr…

More Fun, Starting on Moore Fun!

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Sunday. Another perfect day for riding. Nick had the maps and we were heading back to the Mary's loop area. Same parking lot, but heading the other direction. East across Moore Fun, then down into the main parking area before starting back west on Mary's. Steve's loop also called, then who know. It wold depend on how long we wanted to ride! I made sure I hand plenty of water, some really food (more on that later) and clothes in case the weather turned. We were ready to ride and have some fun on Easter Sunday.

The parking lot was almost empty when we arrived. Perfect! I was looking forward to Moore Fun this time around - a chance to test my skills and see how much I would be able to ride. Last time we rode this trail, I did a lot of walking, a lot of whining and generally wasn't happy with Nick for making me ride something so hard. Not this time around. While I still did a bunch of walking, I was quite pleased with the amount I was able to ride. After I got my head on …

Dining with the "Glutard"

That's what Nick calls himself anyway... And this will be a little bit of a rant, so consider yourself warned!

More and more restaurants are catching on - realilzing that people who are gluten intolerent want to be able to eat out with their friends and not worry about getting sick. This was our first trip where it has really been an issue. Before, with the turtle, I was able to make anything - all healthy and gluten free for Nick. It was a simple as cooking at home - just on a smaller scale. Not this time. Although I am pretty dangerous with a microwave and hot pot, sometimes all you want after a hard ride is a pizza. Or a hamburger. But it's more then just food. It's the whole package. Food, drinks, ambiance. And while we got the food at least once, (the other was a little poor - even simple questions like "are the fries cooked in the same oil as the breaded dishes" couldn't be answered. And an extra piece or two of lettuce with the hamburger wouldn't …

Twice the fun of Fruita

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Two rides planned for the Saturday meant a really busy day! We got up early and headed out to the North Fruita Desert aka 18 road. No agenda planned for this ride, other then find singletrack and have some fun. The parking lot at 18rd was already busy when we showed up about 9:00 - lots of cars and bikes. We quickly got organized and hit the trails, heading west. At the first intersection, a choice - road or new single track. We had a general idea of where we wanted to go and I more interested in exploring then getting there fast. So on to Zip Off we rode. And it was fun. Undulating single track through the sage and desert. Nothing hard but really cool riding with views of the book cliffs to the north and the monument to the south. It was also a good easy warmup to riding. We reached Western Zippity after a bit and started climbing. Gentle rolling climbing, but there was no mistaking the increasing elevation. We hadn't met another rider yet and were enjoying the peaceful ride. So …

Lunch time single track

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Ahh - mini training camp time. Time to work on tan lines, technical skills and get some awesome hours in the saddle. Our weekend escape wasn't as exotic as Sedona or Moab, but convenient, closes and afforded many opportunities for different trails and fun. First stop on the agenda was a few hours at the Lunch Loops. We rolled out of the parking lot, ready for sunburned and fun dry riding. Nick's goal - find Holy Cross trail and play on some rocks. My goal? Ride as much as I could of the technical stuff and try to keep up!


Keeping up was the hard part - coming off a few super easy days and sitting in the car for a bunch of hours left me feeling sluggish and stiff. And a little whiny. We did part of Kid's Meal to warm up and loosen up, which I needed. The snow and muddy trails had kept me off the Era for a few weeks and I was feeling a little twitchy. Always happens on my first ride on that bike after riding the Fate exclusively. But j got over it quickly this time and we we…