Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Time off the bike

I am not going to call myself lazy, or too busy I have just been taking some time off the bike this past week. I haven't been on the bike since the race this weekend, and that was the first time since last Thursday. I will take today off as well, and then Thursday start getting some miles in for this weekend.
So the question arises, WHAT ELSE IS THERE TO DO!?!
Last night we went to the Madison International Speedway for a Tuesday night race. That was a lot of fun. One of the best things to watch, other than the cars are the people. It is amazing the different types of people that hang out at stock car races vs. bike races. The only problem is that about 80% of the people smoked even out side it was bad, oh well that is one thing I like about the cycling community. The race was cool, 150 laps for the feature race. The second place car made a hard move in the last corner and took himself and the leader out giving third place the win. The second place car hit the wall and ripped his entire side of the car down to the frame. It was worth sitting for 149 laps to see a good wreck at the finish.
Tonight we are meeting with a realtor about looking at a house...that should be interesting. Anyway, I will keep you posted on how that pans out.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Badger State Games

This weekend was Badger State Games, in Madison. The was at 2:00pm and the crit was at 4:15pm. I wasn't sure which race I was going to do until Saturday. My parents came down and were looking at some houses with us. That was really good and I think we found one that we are going to try to hook up with.
So on Sunday as they were heading home they stopped into Madison and watch some racing. It was super hot and majorly HUMID!! The field was surprisingly small, only about 30 guys in the Cat. 4-5 race. We took off for the 20 lap race. Right off the start some guys attached and their teammates took the front to block. I wasn't going to loose the race during the first few laps. I would pull to the front up the pace and then the teammates would come around and sit up. One time I ended up attacking, soloing up to the break, we stayed off for about 1 lap after I made the bridge then got pulled back in. In short with-in the first 8 laps I pulled in 3 of the breaks by my self. I was a little worried that I was working too hard but I think it was good that I pulled stuff in quickly, I think this physiced out the rest of the field and from laps 10-17 things were pretty calm. I was doing major recover knowing that things would get crazy at the end. Surprisingly no one really attacked too hard for during laps 17-19. Then on the last lap a group of 3 guys went hard about 1/4 way in. They got off the front but didn't look like they were going to stay. I watched them for another 1/4 lap and then I knew I had to go if I was going to make the podium. With 1/2 lap to go I opened up the reserves. They seen me coming and took off also. Because I was soloing I could take the final corner faster and caught the group there. The rest of the field was coming really hard at this point and my legs were burning like I have never felt! The final stretch was about 400 meters (about 1/4 mile). The break away stood up and started sprinting, I didn't think I could do it but I shifted to a big gear and started looking for one more sprint in my legs. A few others from the main pack sprinted early and came up on us hard, now we were a group of 7 and I was last. I knew I had worked too hard to let it go. I was pushing and got around two guys, then in a last ditch effort I swung out around two others about 20 ft. from the finish with enough speed to get just 1/2 a wheel up on him!! It was a really good sprint, I think it was the first time I was able to make a finish sprint stick so that was exciting! I will look around for some pics on line and post what I can find.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Tuesday road ride

We had a really small group for the Tuesday road ride last night. I was a little disappointed but decided I would just do my own thing and see who could hang on. We headed up to Cambridge through Milton, adding about 15 miles each way to the ride. We split the group of 6 into two groups of 3 and took off. I was feeling really good and was taking long steady pulls into the wind at 24+ mph. Just outside of Newville Hagen flatted and told us to keep going. Mike was really pounding on the hills and I was cranking steady on the flats. We got to Cambridge, I went into the library to get some water and Mike said he was going to head out of town slowly to keep his legs moving. I got my water and then hit the road at 25 mph all the way to Rockdale. I didn't caught Mike and thought maybe he was riding around town waiting for me, so I turned around and went back to Cambridge, still no mike. I asked a Cop if he had seen a biker and he said someone was just leaving Rockdale heading south, I must have just missed him. So again I started heading home. I pushed for about 15 miles then I was running out of juice. I never caught Mike and by the time I got home I had put in about 65 miles in just under 3.5 hours. I was just shot, I ate everything I could get my hands on when I got home; Snickers salad, pickles, cheese, gatorade, cookies, chips, 2 bananas, and more water!
I am feeling good again today, I picked up a bottle of the new Endurance Formula Gatorade. I really like this stuff. I think we are heading to the lab this afternoon, that should be fun I haven't been out there for a long time.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Another Hot One

This weekend was another hot race. It is kinda weird, last year all we had was rain and could have used some sun, this year all we have is sun and could use some rain. Oh well. We were up at 9-mile in Wausau. The course is fun, there are a few small gradual hills, lots of flowing single track, and painfully fast double track.
Cathy had a really good race. She had a good start in a HUGE field, acouple miles into the first lap She seen a girl make a move to the front and knew she needed to be on her wheel. She pulled away from the group and the two of them were gone. From what I seen Cathy was doing a lot of the work up front. On the second lap the other girl got around her. Cathy said she could have cut inside of her coming into the last single track but was afraid of taking both of them out. The finish was great both of them out of the saddle sprinting to the line, Cathy was coming hard but just didn't have quite enough. It was really fun watching both of them push each other, Cathy said that was one of the funnest races so far!
Acouple hours later it was time to do it again, I lined up way in the back, I knew we would have a fast start and they were going to cut out part of the single track this would allow me time to get into a decent spot by the second single track. The plan worked really well. I started at my own pace, and let the draft throw me past a lot of people. The Maxxis tires did wonders too, lots of people were using semi-slicks and my MiMos were just totally hooking up on the highspeed loose corners. I settled into a spot around 14th place for the rest of the first lap. As we lapped through our group started to dwindle down to 3 then Jeremey fell off and it was Justin and I. We were working really good and I think we were running between 8-10th. I was feeling good and just hoping I could hold that pace for one more lap as we came through the start finish area. Justin was starting to get nervious about the guys behind us, we couldn't see them but from spotters I guess they were coming strong. He really upped the pace on the 4th lap. I was doing everything I could to stay on his wheel. I held on for few miles then he make a strong move and dropped me. I tried to keep my pace but at this point was shot. I had 5 more miles to the finish that felt like 10. Quite a few people got around me, I tried jumping on their wheels but I had nothing left. I had to just go with what I had and hope that I could hold a couple people off. At the finish I had dropped down to 26th. I was disappointed, but one of these days I will be able to hang for the entire race. That is the goal.
This morning I was up at 4am. Cathy took off for work at 4:30 and I went for an easy ride to flush my legs. This week I am going to work on longer rides, I have been putting in a lot of intensity and now I think I need to get longer endurance.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Night ride

I have had a tough time getting the time I need in while it is still daylight. Yestarday I decided to try evening riding, and I think I will do more of that. I mounted my light on the road bike and Cory and I went out for about 2 hours (from 8pm to 10pm). The had wind died down, it was still warm, not hot though, and hardly any traffic. We rode tempo pretty much the entire night with 6 start sprints thrown in to make it feel like a training ride. I am heading out on the road bike again tonight, don't think we will be out as late though.
Yestarday I was cutting the brake lines down on the NRS and realized that the compression fitting are not reusable. I had to overnight order some from the shop so hopefully they will be in on Friday, in time for the race this weekend. Oh well leason learned, inventory parts before servicing.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Oops, missed the ride

Ok so Cathy and I have been working super early hours. It sucks getting up early but rules getting out of work at a decent time. Anyway, I was all geared up for the road ride, Cathy was going to take a nap and I was just sitting with her before I was going to leave...yeah well about 2.5 hours later I woke up and realized that I missed the road ride. I jumped on my bike and cruised down to the park to try and catch the ride, no luck just missed them also. I hit some trails at Palmer, jumped on the bike trail and headed to North East. I did about 45 minutes out there and just felt flat so I called it a day and went home.
I think my body was getting behind in sleep, after the 2.5 hour nap and then actually getting 6 hours of sleep (we went to bed super early) I feel great! Got up this morning and did some work on the bike. I need to cut the brake lines shorter, get new grips, install a new chain (hopefully my wipperman gets here today) and I should be ready to rock.

Friday, June 10, 2005

Thursday Night Ride

Lets just get this on the record, I really love mt.biking. After riding the road on Tuesday I got out last night for a little over 3 hours on the NRS. I wanted to get a good hard workout in before the group ride, so Bill and I hit the NorthEast park hard! We did starts/interval work. I really like doing speed work out there, the trails are just right, open enough to go fast but tight enough to keep you on your game. Then we headed out to the field and did more intensity on the 4-wheeler trails. That ended up being 45 minutes of solid interval work. At 6:30 we met up with the group only to learn that they wanted to hammer all night. I still felt great so I lead the fast group. The ground was really dry and could use some of the rain they have been promising every day. We pushed hard almost without stopping for just over an hour. The group stayed together good, there are enough short cuts if you get dropped you can get back on. After another hour of toning things down a little I was ready to call it a night but Cory wanted one more lap, full throttle. I jumped on his wheel and we were gone. We turned a sweet lap and got out of the woods just as it was getting dark.
After getting cleaned up with a garden hose we had a meal of burritos and Coronas while voting on who gets to wear the jersey-o-shame...have fun Bob!!!
This weekend we are heading home to see the fam. Hopefully we will have some good weather, we are going to try to hit the lake and see if I remember how to ski. It will be fun to have the weekend off and hang out with some old friends.


Wednesday, June 08, 2005

On the road again

I finally got the road bike back up and going, it really wasn't broke, well kinda...either way I wasn't riding it. It felt really good to get on a different bike and different ride. We did a race simulation around an 8 miles circuit. A lead group of 5 went out while we waited for them to get a gap. Then the first chase group of 4 went out 3 minutes later. After that our group of 4 took off, 4 minutes (7 minutes behind the lead pack). The goal was to work up to the lead pack and then who ever could close the gap won. We were pushing hard and working good. When we got to the big hill I went off the front and Jason stayed close, but the other two dropped. I sat up and waited for Jason, as we turned the corner at the bottom of the hill we could see the leaders. We passed a few stragglers that dropped off. I was taking really long hard pulls but felt good. Then about 1/4 way through the 2nd lap, as Jason pulled off I sprinted, yeah it was dirty but he said he would have done the same thing. I sprinted hard and closed the gap. We rode with the group for a little then turned around to get the two guys that dropped from our group of 4. When we all hooked up I seen the leaders had put the hammer down. We started working again but the two guys that dropped were hurting so Jason and I took long pulls. On the third lap Ken came back to help us a little and to get in on the sprint. At about the same place I attacked the previous lap Ken took off just as I was pulling off the front. Jason was on his wheel, I stood up and pounded nails solo. I got around Jason again but couldn't catch Ken, that guy can sprint like I have never seen! We stopped at a park to get water and the fire department was there practicing spraying a barrel. I stood at the edge of the parking lot and got soaked, man that felt good!
I was really happy to see that I had recovered from this weekend and the heat. Sounds like we might be hitting the lake this weekend, that is going to feel AWESOME!!

Monday, June 06, 2005


Well this weekend didn't go as good as I was hoping for. I am not going to make any excuses, blame anyone or anything just tell you what happened. Due to a little misfortune at Alpine Valley a couple weeks ago I was elected to wear the Jersey-O-Shame. It is the traveling jersey on the team that if someone gets nominated to wear for doing something dumb.
The jersey is old, before the days of sweet wicking material, on top of that it was going to hit almost 90 degrees. I knew this was going to be a problem so I loaded up on water and enduralites. I got called up and lined up behind Brian Matter, knowing he would have a good start.

We took off and I got a good jump off the line. At the end of the lead out field I was sitting in the top 10.

We came to some fast double track through the woods and I moved to 8th. I was really pumped to be up with the leaders and although we were going fast but I wasn't riding harder than I wanted too. The course was probably 80% single track. I settled in place and kept up as we wove our way around the woods. We had a group of about 10 so on the fire roads we had a really good pace line going. I was still feeling good as we started the second set of single track. I knew this was going to be a long race but wanted to hang on as long as I could. All of the sudden I heard a *PING* and my pedals just spun, I knew what happened and the guy behind me confirmed it.."your chain broke pull over" I got out of his way so that he could stay with the pack. I ran back and grabbed my chain. It only took a minute or two to get it fixed but in the time about 35-40 people got around me. I took off again a little flustered but still focused. I got back into the grove and started to pick people off. I think this is were I began to run into problems. I was feeling good at the start and didn't feel like I was going overly fast, now I was playing catch up and was really pushing, and passing a lot of people. I tried to stay focused but I was starting to catch some fast guys and had to really push to get around them, do this a couple times and you loose focus. On my 3rd of 4 laps I was starting to hurt I was still passing people but could tell I was a little sloppy in the single track. I ran out of water half way through the lap, and took a hand up from a spectator. I was hoping this would get me back to the water station but it didn't. Things went from bad to worse VERY fast! I was getting really sloppy, dizzy, and couldn't slow my breathing. I ended up crashing and it took me a long time to get up. I knew at this point I couldn't do another lap and had to get back to the water station FAST or I was going to be in trouble. I took the last gel shot I had started walking/riding against traffic to get out of the woods. I made it out and got to Cathy, she had 3 bottles ready for me and I killed all of them. It took me some time to get relaxed again, we made it back to the car loaded up and took off.
In all I was disappointed I had to turn in a DNF but on the other hand I was glad that I am figuring out good warm up techniques for solid starts and hanging with the top 10. Everyone is going to have a problem here and there, it is how you react to it. I can't wait to get my Wipperman back and be able to run the next race with confidence.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Just a quickie...well maybe not

Ok, just for a quick update. This weekend was a mix of weather, nice, kinda nice but raining and on Monday beautiful! We headed out to Kettle monday expecting to see half the state of Illinois there as well as at least half of Wisconsin. When we arrived I was pleased to see that the majority of the people were at homing doing their part to keep the National overweight statistic high. Cory and I took off on the blue loop and then hit the connector out to Emma and back. The girls, Cathy and Christina were just planning on doing a couple blue loops and then call it a day, but they ended up hitting the connector and Emma as well. I have never been out there so it was fun, we were pushing pretty hard but it just felt good so I didn't want to slow up. When we got back to the parking lot Larry was just pulling in. We took off with him for his warm-up and our cool-down. I wanted to push hard on a blue loop so I took off and despite the heavy traffic on the trail still turned a 42 minute lap.
By this point everyone had just got to the parking lot, perfect timing. We talked about the ride, compared cuts, bruises, and crashes then headed up to the LaGrange store for ice cream.
I was going to do the road ride last night but in an attempt to fix my road bike's seat post I tapped the spacer too far down and now I can't get my seat post on. So Cathy and I hit up the ride. Cathy was hurting from her 25+ mile ride on Monday and I was feeling my 40 miles from the day before as well. It was a good ride though low key and great time to spin the legs.