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Showing posts from January, 2015

Copper En Fuego

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Fat bike racing... A new experience and what a blast. I haven't ridden Fatso that much since I've gotten the bike, but the Leadville Winter Bike Series was high on the winter fun list. The first race was last Saturday at Copper Mountain and I had no clue what to expect. After a short warmup and pre-ride of half of the race course, I realized I was in for a treat. A hard, challenging treat with high potential for crashing and snow sampling. The biggest challenge was a steep climb and descent up and over the tubing hill - I was able to ride it all one way but not the other on the pre-ride. With other riders around, it would be much different. And then there was the soft, powdery snow scattered around the course. It was well packed in some places, but deep and loose in others. In the chundery snow, it was a challenge just keeping the bike upright. My learning curve was going to get very steep very quickly.
As the start approached, fat bikers appeared out of the woodwork and buildi…

Thelen Coaching

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The love of sport and the happiness of activity is wonderful thing, but one that eludes many people. There is a freedom in movement, satisfaction in the personal effort of a quality workout and exhilaration of achieving lofty goals. It all starts with the dream and writing down the goals, no matter how crazy.As a lifelong endurance athlete, I've had years of experience in running, triathlons and mountain biking. I've set goals aggressive enough that coaches said I wouldn't reach them and done things most athletes wouldn't attempt. Sometimes I succeeded, sometimes I failed. Regardless of the outcome, it was always a learning opportunity. What worked and made me stronger and faster; what didn't work and ended breaking me. When I self-coached, I was able to build on those lessons in creating the next training cycle. When I worked with CTS, the workouts became more focused, but still balanced with the knowledge I gained in the years prior.

And now it is time for me t…

Welcome back!

Back in 2009, I was sponsored by Chistopher Bean Coffee based out of Florida. It was some of the best coffee I'd had - consistently roasted with smooth flavor. When in I'm a huge proponent of buy local and there are plenty of local roasters in Colorado Springs. I think I tried almost every one - with some very good results. But always mixed. One day I'd get a bag and it would be perfectly roasted (for me) and the next week it would be bitter to my tastes. So frustrating when all I want to do is enjoy a morning cup of coffee with my book or when preparing to race. I love the taste of coffee, but not when it's a heavy, dark roast and that seems to be the style around here.

So late last year, when the team manager for the newly revamped Christopher Bean Coffee Team approached me about renewing sponsorship, I jumped at the chance. And when I got my first order of coffee, I knew it was the right decision (even though it's not local.) The mellowness of the lighter roasts…

What a year

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Time for another year end post! 2014 was an interesting year and one that I won't soon forget. We trimmed the race schedule even more then last year, allowing a laser sharp focus on the major events. I've already posted all the race reports, discussed my goals and done the boring stuff like that. No need to rehash all of that or analyze what I did right or could do better. If you want to read that, take a gander through the archives of 2014. Part of riding and racing is about the experiences so that's what I like reviewing at the end of the year. With that said, here's some of the things that stuck with me this year.

Hardest two hours on a bike Lap 12 at 24 Hours in the Enchanted Forest. I'd taken the lead on lap 10 and needed to keep riding to claim the Stars and Stripes. Nick had done his job as Pit Boss exemplary and I'd not been off my bike for more then 10 minutes in the past 20 hours. Every muscle in my arms hurt from the miles I had already covered. The …

Rescue Run Weather

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January 1 is always an iffy time for weather. Will it be warm and sunny? Icy and cloudy? Just plan ass cold despite the sun? Who knows - but it's almost for sure that there will be nearly 1000 people gathering at the starting line at 10:00 for the annual Rescue Run. I dropped off my application at CRC in the midst of a snow storm, joking with John that it was looking like Rescue Run weather. Little did I know...

When I checked the weather on New Years Eve, it looked like snow was definitely in the cards. I packed a bag full of all sorts of clothes - from heavy wool coat to light weight tights and everything in between. I had three pairs of shoes - my normal running shoes, trails shoes and the shoes I use with my Kahtoola microspikes. Since I didn't know what the road conditions at Palmer Park were going to be like - we'd been gone for a week and missed all the snow and sub zero temps - I wanted to be prepared. Trying to run on ice in my normal shoes is a fall waiting to ha…

Something different

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I'm a native - one of the seeming rarer and rare ones lucky enough to be born in Colorado. When I tell people that, they always assume that I'm also a skier. After all, all CO natives ski, right? Well. Wrong - I used to ski a little when I was younger, but quit in high school and sold all my gear. Life has a funny way of turning things around though, as Nick became more and more interested in getting AT gear so we could do hut trips and and other different winter activites. We finally got the last piece in the ski gear puzzle this year, just before the snow started flying - the actual ski gear! Boots, AT bindings and AT skies, along with skins, avalanche probes and beacons. Time to remember what I was doing with these boards strapped to my feet!

The weekend before Thanksgiving, we headed to Monarch Mountain with Shad, Stephanie and Ned. It was before they were opened for the season, so we had to use our skins to get to top of the mountain. And wow - that was hard work. We had …