Showing posts from July, 2013

Ascent Cycling Series #4

For the fourth race in the Ascent Cycling Series, we returned to Cheyenne Mountain State Park for the first time in a few years. A new course with more rocks despite the absence of Medicine Wheel meant a pre-ride was super important. The ProCycling Tuesday Night Mountain Bike Ride headed over for to the park before the race to check things out. We all had fun playing on the rocks and I had some thoughts on the best way to approach the course.
Cheyenne Mountain State Park Race

I'm always talking to myself and this race was no different. Unfortunatly, Pat from Ascent was right behind me for one lap and got a nice veiw of me yapping aloud. That proved to be my inspiration for the race report. After the race, instead of a formal race report, I traced the four laps I rode through the mantras I use. Breath, flow, relax and ride my bike! Aways good advice...
Talking to Myself

Specters in the Mist

Sunday. The girls day on the trail out in Salida. After the guys had their fun on the Crest and surrounding trails under bluebird skies, Kathy (Blaine's wife) and were hoping for similarly perfect conditions. We knew we'd have to get up early to avoid fellow trail lovers - when I'd dropped the guys off Saturday, there was a herd of cyclists getting ready to ride. But that was planning for sunny skies. When we woke up Sunday, after a night of intermittent rain, clouds covered the mountains. We were in a spot of sunshine in downtown Salida, but the mountains to the west, north and south were draped in white blankets. It made for a pretty morning, but we were all questioning the weather conditions at the top of the pass. Regardless, we were still riding, so Nick and I loaded our bikes into Blaine's RV and we headed for the clouds. We we treated to a rainbow across the Pass from the rising sun as we drove westward. Then into the mist. There was no visibility at all, with t…

Solo Salida

Sometimes, adventure is found in the most unexpected locations and even workouts become about the experience instead of the numbers. This weekend was a perfect example. My first plan was to get on the Fate and have my power meter going for this weekend. I'd just gotten it back and was super excited to finally be able to quantify my workouts again. Just in time for the next training block. But Friday when I got home from work, the weekend plans we'd made changed. I was home early and there was a decent group of COS riders heading south. So we loaded up the van and headed south to Salida for a weekend of riding. And with that new plan, the Fate stayed home and I opted for the Era. Full squish was calling despite the Saturday workout! I was going to want the fun bike for Sunday. 
Friday was an easy pedal in the lower Methodist Mountain trails. Nothing fancy, just enough to flush the legs from sitting and work. We met up with Blaine at Riverside Park in downtown Salida to plan the …

Palmer Park at Speed

Wow. I've raced at Palmer Park before, riding through the rocks at speed. But those races have all been on easier trails - with fewer rocks and wider paths. It makes for some false confidence about how well I'm handling the technical riding. Sunday after the Ascent Cycling Cheyenne Mountain State Park race, Nick allowed me to join him, Todd, Cam's dad Doug and his uncle Chris for a tour of the non-race trails of Palmer Park. This was much different then any of races I've ever done - and much harder. And it really showed how I've progressed with my riding. And I saw allowed because he was very hesitant - telling me that it was going to be fast pace with no waiting. I needed to be able to ride my bike and try to keep up. The ride started out easy, then headed to Templeton - and not the sections of any of the races. It was all sections I'd ridden before with Nick, but never fast and never clean. I walk a lot of Templeton usually when we ride that trail. Not this …

Ascent Cycling Series Race 3

Back to Palmer Park for some more fun. Before the race, I offered some tips on passing over at - after all, everyone needs a refresher now and then. That seemed to be a big hit - either that or it was the classic photos I dragged out of the archives!
In the Passing Lane

Then after the race, it was time to reflect on riding smart, not chasing and staying focused after a mishap. I'd gone down hard, but managed to pull it together to keep riding hard.
Trail Makeup and Staying Focused

And now some photos from Tim Bergsten of Pikes Peak Sports!

The Call

I'm a mountain biker, and my husband is also a mountain biker. He often heads off into the woods, high into the mountains with the guys for long, epic rides. Come winter it's time for "Tuesday Night Worlds" when all the fast guys come out to play. I've done some of the trails they do on those rides and wow - it takes me and Nick an hour or more longer to complete the same distance. It's a given that Tuesday is Nick's night and I don't usually see him again until 8:30-9:00. I'm not normally worried - he's riding with other guys and he is also well prepared. Small medical kit, warm clothes, water treatment stuff and a spot tracker for emergencies. He'll occasionally check in with the spot so I know what's going on, but normally I just know the route and who might be joining him. But I also know that one day, I may get a phone call changing everything. 
Well, last week, we got that phone call. But not for Nick - he had bailed on the guys r…

Weekend fun

Finally feeling like its time for some long rides and adventures. I think I might have been ready sooner if not for the Achilles issues after 24 Hours in the Enchanted Forest. But that's a part of 24 hour racing, particularly going solo. The cause of the Achilles irritation has been addressed and its feeling a lot better. No tightness and the swollen area in the tendon has gone away. I was really worried about it after the June 26 Ascent race, but after the July 10th fun I was feeling a lot better. The bad thing about behaving and making sure that everything healed up was missing a lot of fun rides. A lot of fun rides and adventures. Sure, we went to Breck for the CTS camp which was awesome, but there were plenty of other trips I passed on. Nick went down to Salida with the guys over the July 4th weekend, and followed it up with another ride in Breck. He invited me on the Breck ride, but I stayed home and behaved. I really wanted to go, but needed to ride easy and be smart. Boo. I…

Front Rangers Ride

Last Wednesday, Nick and I were invited to join the Front Rangers for their weekly ride. The Front Rangers is a Colorado Springs base junior cycling team with athletes focusing on the both the road and mountain side of the sport. We met up with the mountain team to go over some skills like passing and switchbacks and generally just have fun on two wheels. It was awesome to see so many kids ready to ride and learn. So many different skill levels, different bikes and different ages, but all eager to hit the single track. Nick took the faster group and I hung back with the b group, but we all got practice on some of the gravelly trails of Cheyenne Canyon. Mostly photos!

Racing on feel

It's only fitting. I just finished a post about the gadgets and toys that have invaded riding. Part of it was inspired by my own gadget needing service and how happy I was that I could still race on feel I didn't let the failure affect my race. I use my toys to get the data, but try to keep the riding free from distractions. But I really like uploading the files and seeing the squiggly lines indicated how hard I was working. Even without the power, I can still get plenty of information about how I'm racing and recovering from heart race. I was interested in seeing the data from the race last Wednesday - knowing I was going into the hour less then 100%. I wouldn't have power, but I still had heart rate and such. I could learn a lot from this race, the four laps of pain. So of course, what happened?

I forgot to charge my Garmin. I've been bad about that the last few months - letting it get low and then hoping to finish the workout. I usually catch it before events th…

Ascent Cycling Series #2

This time, I offered up some tips for racing in the heat. It was good timing, as the Wednesday temperatures were up into the 90s. I followed my own advice prior to the race, making sure I had plenty of cold water - frozen bottles and electrolytes. Didn't do the ice in the sports bra though!

My race report is also over at Pikes Peak Sports. It was a good race, with some very fast women. Too bad I didn't race smart and remember how tired I really was.