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Friday, September 28, 2007

endurance training is in order for bailey!!!

today was a lazy day. my legs hurt baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaad, it took quite an effort just to walk down the stairs. i think i over did it with the running the last couple of days. yesterday i rode 50 and then did another run afterwards, propably not too smart, but oh well. so today i'm sitting here with nothing to do and i wanted to go for a ride, but too sore to really think about going out for a serious ride. well, the weather was nice and so i decided to get the mt. bike in working order and take bailey out for a run. we went to lost valley. i thought we'd propably get at least two laps in, but it wasn't going to happen today. bailey started off strong with a good pull at the front setting the pace for the first four miles. then from mile marker four to five she started to slow down, and at mile marker five the poor girl just bonked. i brought an extra bottle of water for her, but she wouldn't drink any. there was nothing i could do, but to just keep going and letting her stay within sight. i do have to say denny has trained her well and she sticks to the trails. she's a natural, just needs a little more endurance training. might have to get her a treadmill!!! well, needless to say, it took about a half hour longer then it usually takes to get in the 8 mile loop. i wasn't upset with her at all, i was out there for her anyways, she needs a break from apartment living and the usual tennis ball. everytime we came to a stream she jumped in and drank all the water she could. well, she gained a little energy after that and we both made it back to the car. we only did one lap, but that was ok. i was feeling lousy and bailey had had it, i'm sure she was feeling lousy too. we'll definetly be back to lost valley for some more training now that the weather is a little cooler. the weather was perfect today and the trails were in excellent condition. by the way, i drove by my new condo and saw that they now have the framework up for the second building. i'm in the third building and it looks like they might be starting on that within the next couple weeks. just when i'm getting used to living on this side of the river i'm going to be moving back to st. charles. i'm gonna miss the easy access to the valley and the friendly drivers that are tolerant with the cyclists.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

why i hate running...

i guess i don't really hate running, but i just don't do it enough to keep my legs accustomed to it. every run is like the first run and my legs are in pain for several days. like yesterday, after work i went riding with a friend and then we went running for a half hour. i've got to say i've never ran after a ride. today though my legs are sore from all the pounding of the pavement that my legs are not used to. i haven't ran since i was in the national guard last year and i actually used to run a few times a week training for my physical fitness test, which is a joke by the way. i didn't even have to train to pass that test. i can't say the army national guard is the most physically fit branch of the military, especially an aviation unit like i was in. their standards are about a tenth of what we did in the marine corps. hell, the national guard doesn't even care, they're just happy to have people. god bless those people though, i thank all those people who are still in and my brother who is now over in iraq. anyways, even though my legs are in pain i think i'll run today again after my ride. i'd hate to waste all of this pain in my legs to not run again for several months. it's getting to be fall again and running will be a good supplement to my winter training anyways.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Ste. Genevieve Road Race.....

Well, what can I say, that was a hard race. On the same token, it was a great race and great venue. This race really challenged me mentally and physically. First of all, I'd have to say that going in my legs were only at 75%. I had a long work week and come Thursday my body felt like it had been hit by a Mack truck. I still rode 50 that day and 25 on Friday and I propably shouldn't have. Anyway's, enough with the excuses. There were only about 15 CAT 3's that did the race. I guess a lot of guys either pulled the chutes after Gateway or just don't like road races. I did have two teammates though, Denny and Marin.

Now for the race report. For the first lap we were going at a pretty good clip and continued to chase down an ever attacking Shawn O'neal. We wouldn't let him get away and I road at the front a lot, more then I should have. That was the first 25 miles of the loop, then the hills came and that's where everything broke apart. There was about three nice climbs of different grades, but each one with their own character difficulty in their own right. We split up into several small 2-3 man groups, except for Shawn who was by himself. Denny showed me good legs as he passed me on one of the climbs. After the last climb before going into town I found myself alone between groups and trying to bridge the gap, my time trialing ability is a little lacking, so I held up and waited for John from Ghissalo and Turin guy. The three of us then made it into the feed zone all together and finding ourselves just about caught up with several of the other small groups. Then it was the Dogwood roadrace all over again for Denny. As I went through the feed zone Denny had actually gotten off his bike and could not go any further. He had some bad cramping going on and had to wait for them to go away. As I rode past I had a decision to make, either go with the group or help Denny out. Two is always better then one when trying to bridge a gap. Well, I decided to leave the group and turn around only to find out that Denny still could not go and he told me to go without him. Well, at this point I fell into no man's land. I was all alone to contest the next 35 miles on my own all the while trying to bridge a group of several compared to just myself, ain't gonna happen. I'd have to say this was the hardest 35 miles I've ever done, what makes it even worse is that after about 10 miles of being on my own, Denny who I had stopped for looked like he totally recovered from his cramps and flew past me. Then a couple miles later the lead masters group of about 7 or 8 guys passed me. Then another few miles after that the rest of the masters group passed me, although I kept them within site the rest of the way. Now thinking about it I should have just latched onto them and worked with them. I know it's illegal, but who care's at this point of the race. My feet were killing me and my knees were also screaming at me too. Anyways, I let them pass and finally I reached the last set of hills and all I could do was put it in my easiest gear and try to spin as easily as I could all the while keeping my cramping to a minimum. All I could do is look at my odometer and read the mileage click up and wonder how many more miles I had left. I can say I didn't much in the tank left, I was on fumes as they say. Well, I did finally make it, and I could actually see in the distance that Denny was now only about 300 meters in front of me. I crossed that finish line in 10th place and could only think about getting some cold water down. During that last 35 miles it's funny what goes through your head when your suffering like I was yesterday. The big question was why am I putting myself through this pain and agony? At that point I would've told you never again, but now after a good nights sleep and a cup of coffee in hand I can tell you that I would do it again next week.

It was an awesome race even with the suffering. I talked to one of the promoters of the race and he said it was a lot of work and wasn't sure about the race next year. I hope they do it because it was awesome and a great way to finish out the season, not too many road races this late in the year around here.

It's now time to really take a break and think about the upcoming cross season.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

what does one do at 3am???

Well, it's now 5:3o am, I've been up since 3am. I've pretty much wasted my whole Wednesday sleeping, which is normal for me. After a long work week with very little sleep, I recoup by sleeping my whole day away, which leads me to why I'm now awake at this hour. My plans for today include a 50 miler with Greg this morning. It'll propably be a nice easy ride since I've got my last road race this Saturday down in St. Genevieve.

As I sit here surfing the net and bring up music video's I came across an awesome video on youtube set with The Wallflowers song, We Will Be Heroes. It's got clips of the 2005 World Jr. Championships when Canada won it. It's giving me goosebumps and getting me excited to get back on the ice. I haven't played hockey since our BHL Championship game last spring. It's about that time of year again to lacem' up!!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oCp3dzLrdBY

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

i need a shot of jagger and a bed!!!!!!!!

here i am at work. it's now 12:35pm and i've been here since 6:30 last night. i guess i'll know what i'm doing all day tomorrow again.............SLEEP!!!!!!! i've been so stressed out this morning. it started around 4am until just recently when i've been able to finally sit down and type this. i haven't written much lately having been at work, all i can say is that i look forward to one day and that's thursday when i can get back on my bike. i'll be lucky to get four hours of sleep tonight, couldn't even imagine going to the tuesday night crit tonight. well, think i'll sign off for now.

i need a shot of jagger and a bed!!!!!!!!

Friday, September 14, 2007

No race for tonight.....

Well, I don't thing I'll be racing tonight in Jeff City. I've decided to do a ride with a friend instead. I did get a ride in yesterday morning at a medium effort. I think I'll get a good ride in today and tomorrow before going back to work and being off the bike for four days. Tomorrow the Tour of Missouri rolls into town so I'll have to ride in the morning..........hmmmmmmm.....ahhhhh, I think maybe I'll ride out to Ghisallo bike shop and do that ride, that'll get me around 55. I've got the St. Genevieve RR next Sunday so I'll need to keep up the training until then before taking a break before the cross season. I have no idea where I'm going to watch the race from. I'm thinking Schluerburg is in order, but haven't quite figured out the logistics yet. I would like to also catch the finish downtown. It's gonna be great to see a pro race finish down there. Schluersburg is one heck of a climb. There is something about it that makes it tough. For one, I think the length is deceiving and then the second part where it kicks up makes it that much more difficult. It should be a fun place to watch it from and from my standpoint, if some guys can nail it up that climb I think it may break up the field if it hasn't already.

For those of you that don't think Missouri has mountains, I just read that Garcia, from the Toyota-United team did not make the cutoff time at the finish of stage 2. Since he was the only one to finish outside the time his team is claiming that the route had so many hills that it should've been rated a mountain stage thus allowing a greater time to finish behind the pack in. I love it. I'd really like to know what the ramblings about this course are within the peloton. While St. Louis and Missouri are not known for any mountains, I will say that all these damn hills are enough to take there toll. I just may have to get a GPS to track the elevation gains on my rides. Good luck to all the racers tonight in Jeff City.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

brrrr...

well, looks like it's about that time to break out the arm and knee warmers. i was just outside playing with bailey and it's a bit chilly out there. i slept my usual 20 hours yesterday, making up for three days worth of lack of sleep. now being refreshed and a gallon of coffee flowing through my veins, it looks like a ride is in order first thing this morning. it's funny, i've got cycling.tv on in the background and they are talking about the riders wearing arm and leg warmers as i'm typing this. i guess it's that time of year all over the world. by the way, this is a great website, guess i'll give my plug for cycling.tv. even with the free version you can get tons of races and they are showing the tour of missouri for free also. if you've never tried this site i would suggest it as the top site for watching anything cycling 24/7.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Knucklehead ride...

Don't ask me why it's called that. All I know is somebody told me it's one of the oldest group rides in St. Louis. The ride usually leaves from Big Bend and Hanley by Mesa, and heads west on Clayton out to the Wildwood and St. Albans then to SixFlags area which is my playground. I usually do most of my training rides out there. Anyways, as planned, I met up with Denny and Greg on Clayton. We were all early so we turned around and met up with the group. What was supposed to be an uneventful, nice and easy 60-70 mile Sunday stroll ended up being nothing more then a 70 mile training ride. It just seemed like we kept stopping for something, flats, piss breaks, and taking an extra loop to get more hills in. We ended up having to bridge the gap every time back to the group and then the final several miles I time trialed it back before pulling off to head home. When I say we I mean Denny, Greg, Mr. I don't bring any food, tools, or tubes on an 80 mile ride, and myself. It was a good ride since I wasn't able to ride yesterday. Well, I better get off of here since I've got to get some sleep and then go to work tonight. Next race is this Friday at Jeff City. Should be a good one.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Are 29r's really all the rage???


Well, last night my buddy Greg finally got his new Badger 29r frame so I headed over to his house to help him build it. It's a pretty cool steel frame and I loved the machined headbadge. I'm just not so sure on 29r's and not completely sold, although my only experience with 29r's has been a short jaunt through the woods for maybe a mile. I can't say that was any way for me to make a complete assessment on the 29r revolution, but I can say I didn't like it and would have to take it for a few more spins. While I haven't done any considerable mt. biking over the past couple years, just a few races here and there, I can state that I'm in the dark with most things having to do with fat tires nowadays. While I started out my mt. biking and racing career(can I say career, it's not like I've ever gotten paid to ride) on fat tires in the early 90's and even progressed to the expert class, I've always stayed true to my hardtail. I've never bought into the whole dual suspension craze, or even disc brakes, and now you've got the 29r??? What is with this 29r craze, I know they've been around for a couple years now, but does that make my mt. bike a "26r"? Please, somebody enlighten me. I just don't know if it's because it's something new and everybody's got to have it so they let them believe that it's all that much of an innovation. I mean if one person says he likes it enough times and if he's someone of influence then sooner or later everybody else will start thinking the same thing. Is it really that great??? C'mon. I guess I'm out of the loop when it comes to the mt. bike crazes of today. I'll stick with my "26r" titanium hardtail with V-brakes for now and spend my money on my road bikes.


Well, on a race note, there was the Greensfelder race today that I was thinking about doing. I just don't feel that motivated for it, nor do I have a good rear wheel. I could borrow one, but just don't feel like doing the race after the Gateway Cup last weekend. After racing for four straight days it was hard enough to get back on my road bike and the weather didn't cooperate either. I do like that race though and the course suits me. The climbing and technical challenges overcome my lack of pure raw speed. I also put in about 45 semi hard miles yesterday and the pizza I ate at 10pm last night would propably not go well with racing this morning. So, as it stands, Greg and I will propably go on a road ride sometime today, maybe we can pry Denny from daddy daycare duties today. I kinda like this blogging thing, it gives me a place to air every excuse in the book!!! Alrighty then, I've been up for almost an hour and haven't even had my first cup of coffee.........that is blasphemy!!!

Friday, September 7, 2007

What a dreary day.....

I have to say that I'm pretty bummed today. It's another wet and rainy day and I've been trying to get out for a ride, but I just melt in the rain so I'm waiting for it to clear.........oh yeah, and I'm just a pussy. 30 degree weather, a little snow on the ground, 15 mph winds, no problem, but rain, might as well forget about it, I hate riding in the rain, although I may be forced to today. Those are my big plans for today. I still don't know if I'm doing the race tomorrow. I guess I'll know when I wake up in the morning.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Welcome to my blog....

Welcome one and all. As stated in my profile, I've definetly got too much time on my hands. I will be giving little tidbits and pieces of my mind from time to time. I guess that's what a blog is now isn't it. When I'm not at work supervising my hangar and working on airplanes I'm usually engaged in my number one hobby..........bike racing! I'd have to say that I'm a little sad..........the end of the road racing season is coming upon us, and I'm just starting to feel like I'm improving my fitness. I've got several races left, yet I feel like the season is over. Today is one of the first Thursdays that I haven't been on my bike, although the weather didn't cooperate, it just doesn't feel right.



Last weekend was the Gateway Cup, four days of insane crit racing in some of St. Louis's famous neighborhoods with appx. 110 riders in each race. There were a lot of crashes and I was lucky just to stay upright. Last year as a CAT 4 racer I was involved in two pretty serious crashes, lost a lot of skin, suffered a mild concussion, and ruined a set of wheels and my highest placing was 43rd. This year as a Cat 3 I was able to stay out of the crashes, and even accomplished my goals for the weekend. Being a fairly new Cat 3, my main goal was to finish in the top third of the field. Seeing how each race had a max field of 110 riders, that meant I had to finish in the top 37 places. Well, I accomplished each goal, staying out of the wrecks and finishing in the top third. My races went like this: Lafayette Square, 35th, Wash. Ave, 30th, The Hill, 33rd, and finally a 19th at U. City. I think I could've had a higher finish had I attacked on the backside of the course where there was a slight incline and maybe coast to the finish. I learned my lesson in Kansas City though when I attacked on the last lap only to blow up and not even get a placing. Next year I hope to improve on those results and that goes for every race.



This leads me to my next subject, why am I still training. I'm upset that I missed riding today, but it rained all day and I could propably stand to be off the bike anyways. Well, to answer that question, I still have a couple races left before I officially close out the road season. I also have a Mt. bike race this Saturday, at least I think I will be doing it. I haven't ridden my Mt. bike since the State Mt. bike championships in June and I don't even have a rear wheel. Hopefully my buddy Greg will let me borrow his rear wheel again. My last two road races are propably going to be the Jeff City crit again(had a horrible showing last month), and then the St. Genevieve road race before I officially call it a season, although I know I'll still be doing some sort of training......oh yeah, and then the cyclocross season starts. That'll be another first. I've never done a 'cross race before, but it looks like fun. By the way, that reminds me, I better get a 'cross bike soon. Well, if you've read this whole thing, then I guess you've got a lot of time to spare too!!! Time to watch the last couple episodes of The Office, finally season three on DVD.