Monday, April 28, 2008

Another big mileage weekend, sortof.

Jonny and I did the Great Plains Bicycle Club Spring Fling Metric Century on Saturday. First we asserted our authority for the first 15 miles and just rode off the front from Louisville to get to the first Sag station in Plattesmouth. After that we had a few headwind sections, so we got together with some strong guys and just rotated at a nice easy pace. The pace was a little too much for a couple of the guys so by the end of the bad headwind sections, at about mile 55, it was down to Jonny, me, and one other guy. At that point, the metric Century route headed back to Louisville. The 24 mile route took this same road, but then went West. (Hard to explain) Anyway, we added most of the 24 mile route and tacked on an extra 13 miles or so to our metric century by heading out to good ol' Murdock, up around South Bend, across the river onto hwy 31, then back to Louisville. They had hotdogs n Brats waiting at the end that were quite scrumptious. So that was 4 hours to do 73-ish miles. Good times.

Then Sunday, it was reality check time. I got a text from Ryan F saying that he, Roxy, Kev, and Shim were going out on a 3-4 hour ride. Now I knew they would go hard since Kevin is as strong as an ox and his long ride days are a little too quickish (by about 5 mph) for my current fitness level. Well little did I know that the fury was about to be brought. On the ride were: Ryan and Roxy, Jeff Bergan(sp?), Kevin, Shim, Jay Chesterman (of Iowa mtb fame), Jim (last name escapes me), Kent, Stephen Jarrett, and me. If you know those names, you know that they are all pretty much MTB specialists. Well apparently, all of them had some steam to blow off since the race down in Kansas got post-poned on them at the last minute. I told myself I was only going to ride with them for a little while since I was super sore after my 4 hr ride the previous day. We took the usual Wed night Trek store ride route which entails going North on the trail, bipping over to Irvington road, out to hwy 36, over to 72nd and the Omaha Trace, Ft. Calhoun, Boyers Chute, then South home some way. The "go fast" parts are always Irvington road up a long grinder hill, Omaha Trace, and the route between Ft. Calhoun and Hummel Park. I was at the front for the Irvington road hill, but then away they went, and I was off the back. We all regrouped to start the next fast section, Omaha Trace. Well we were on it for quite a while and the speed was mellow. I thought this was great and decided I could actually eat some food to keep the fire going. Well mid-bar, with a mouth full of food, the hammer dropped. And off the back I was again. This time I all but sat up and almost turned around. But I figured I was only a few miles from Ft. Calhoun and it would be easier with the group riding a tailwind. This assumption was wrong. After the Ft. Calhoun regrouping, the pace picked up on the flat roads by Boyers Chute. Now what was frustrating about this, and I don't mean to knock all the mtbers I was with, the group did not work well together at all. And I don't want to name names (Shim) but drafting confidently was hard since there were some squirrels among us. Anyway, once the big hills hit, the group split in 2: the guys who were in TT mode to get home on time, and the rest of us who were taking it easy. We rode home at a very mellow pace, but my legs were super hurty. This is the kind of achiness you're supposed to have in the winter when putting in mega mile days for the off-season. But alas, I'm doing my base training in April/May. Hopefully I'll reap the benefits in the late season. I guess we'll see.

Congrats to Bryan for fairing very well at his first out of state cat 4 race - the Iowa City race weekend. He is picking things up and getting stronger with every race, so that's good. Teammate Ryan Legg also did that race and got a 10th place money spot in the RR which is amazing considering the distance, competition, and weather conditions. He had a pack finish for the crit, but has grown a fire in his belly for racing since he knows now he is fit enough to be with the strongest guys. Ryan, you are one fast mofo, give em hell. Kevin, Noah (Kevin's son), and Troy were down in Kansas doing the Velotek Grand Prix. Kevin did very well getting on the podium with Brian Jensen. *(little disclaimer that there was a field of 5 cat 1/2s). This race has been, for the last few years at least, been run without a cat 1/2 field, strictly cat 3/4/5s, Masters, womens, and juniors. I believe it was run this way so cat 3s and Masters could actually get large payouts. This is kind of a good idea since those fields bring in the most people, but I'm sure it alienated a lot of cat 1/2s. So that plus the cost of traveling is my guess as to why the field was so small. Congrats guys, on having a fun successful weekend.

So that was just a brief summary of my weekend, how was yours?

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The Cold has now subsided.

Well now that it's not dipping down to the 20s for overnight lows and I'm working the late shift, I've been actually riding a bunch. I've ridden 4 of the last 5 days. Saturday was a 3.5 hour jaunt with some teammates. Needless to say, it got kinda quick in places. That was mid-day so when 7am ride time on Sunday showed up, I was not at all recovered. I hurt from the very first pedal stroke and was happy with just doing 3.5 hours. The compatriots on this newly revived Shabbos + 1 ride were: Bryan, Brady, and Joe S. Everyone was a little tired, except for Brady. He's posted some news on his blog regarding his repositioning and knee issues. I dunno. I think he must have installed a bionic knee, and maybe a side order of whale lungs, because he put the hurt on all of us during some climbs. So that was a great hard weekend.

I took Monday easy with just the commute to/from work. Then Tuesday and today I hit the trails at Swanson for some single speed leg blasting workouts. I got in 3 laps in before work Tuesday, one with Mod. He was taking it easy on his full squish 29er Fisher with gears. Just like always, any technical section we hit and BAM, he's gone. I just can't rip the corners or ride as smooth as the true mountain bike brethren. Maybe someday I'll get it. Today, I slept in and was only able to get 2 laps in. I was just fine with that as I'm going to need a couple days recovery after all these miles on road and bumps off road.

It has been perfect weather recently. Riding to/from work, I've just been wearing everyday shorts and a t-shirt. I just pedal easily and I don't sweat. I'd love to look like an average joe who decided $3.50 a gallon is not worth it and is quietly protesting the use of cars with every ride. In plain clothes, I don't seem to get yelled at by many disgruntled drivers compared to when I'm riding in tight cycling clothing. Kinda weird. I'd love to find a t-shirt that had a pic of a gas pump with a red circle/cross through it to wear while I'm riding. If I could get just one person to try bike commuting, I'd be thrilled.

Oh yeah! This weekends plans. There's a Great Plains Spring Fling metric Century (near bottom of page) that leaves Louisville at 9am on Saturday. I'm planning on it, and I know Jonny Randell's in too. Brady mentioned he might crash the party also. I know the Iowa City races are the destination for most of the racing peeps out there. I do love those races, but man, I'm out of shape and broke. Maybe next year. So that also means Sunday is up in the air. We'll see what happens.

Hope everyone's enjoying the weather!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

What's that you say?

Shabbos +1 is back??? From it's original starting location?

That's right my cycling brethren. The coffee shop formally known as Caribou has a new name. I don't know what that name is, even though I've been by it a dozen times or so. But this Sunday, at 7am, the brainchild of one Peter B (only in attendance once and now in California) and Mr. Mitmoned himself (as once seen in cycling sandals and rumored to do so again) will sure as Sheldon, roll on Shabbos.....+1.

Wouldn't it be great if Fred showed up in his wool jersey, ready to sweat out some last apprehensions before his final finals? And wouldn't it be great if Brady showed up with flags hanging off the back of Old Yeller so they can slow down his blazing fast speed since fixing his knee issues?(congratulations on that again, by the way)

Come one, come all to the event of a lifetime(or rather since it got really, really cold).

Meeting time: 7am
Meeting Place: The coffee shop formally known as Caribou (72nd-ish and Pacific)
Ride type: Friendly social ride with speeds averaging in the upper teens.
Distance/time: we'll figure it out based on who shows up and time constraints.

There'll be fun, laughs, and hopefully more than 2 people!! Hope to see you ALL there!!

Knowing both roles.

I've been the biker and the driver. Both actors portray their roles quite well.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

This is just mean!!

Ya I gotta ride em! But I can't afford em!!

Lightweight wheels sweet!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

You're Welcom Fred, and updates.

Fred, congratulations on the completion of a significant life milestone. Would you say, the later you get that diploma, the more you appreciate it? If so, you must really love it. Sorry, had to go there.

Well, despite Matt's fighting for my cause, the Lemond Zurich is not going to happen. Thanks again, dude, for trying. I will keep trucking on my Aluminum steed with much happiness. It really is a great bike. The opportunity was just hard to pass up. Some day, I hope to finally see what all the hype is about on a plastic bike. I will probably order that Salsa Casseroll later in the year when my relief check actually comes in (mine's not coming till mid August!!!). Hopefully, I'll find that bike more zippy and fun to ride than the Bianchi. There's something to be said about a stable tank of a bike, but there's much more to be said about a bike frame that doesn't squirm under every pedal stroke.

THIS WEEKEND!!! Saturday: 40s for low, 70s for high; Sunday: 50s for low, 70s for high. I think we might need to go practice bikes for a little while being that there's no races to attend or help with and the weather will be perfect. I have yet to confirm, but I think the old Caribou coffee shop has been replaced with a new one. I just drove by it, the other day and saw a new sign and lights on inside. I don't know if it's officially open yet, but that could be a new/old meeting spot again since it's right off the trail? Please post your open hours and preferences for ride time so we can get out there and put in some miles!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Thanks mike.

I was going to post to fredcube, but I thought that might be silly. I haven't even read any blogs for a few weeks. So what a great surprise to see my name in the title Munson's last post.

Oh by the way, I will graduate from the college on May 9th. Lots of people go to college for 25 years - yeah their called professors. Drop by the house in the afternoon/evening, if you'd like. I'm having a big huge party. I will start posting on fredcube about golf stuff real soon.

And Mike - I still have my Zurich if you could use a 59 cm steel frame. Oh wait, I'd never sell that bike. ever.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

I'm turning into Fred or Sean

So I haven't posted in a while and kinda been scarce all around. Brady, I'm sorry I didn't get back to you about riding Saturday. I was on a cleaning frenzy (since that's about all I can do that's constructive when on call) that lasted well into the afternoon. I didn't even check my blog or pick up my phone till Saturday evening. I didn't really want to face that wind again anyway.

Sunday's races were fun. I was practice officiating and found it quite challenging. Well, the cat 4/5/womens/juniors race at least. With 28 people whizzing by on different laps with fitness levels spanning the rainbow, it was difficult to keep track of finishing order. Luckily, the very experienced and wise teacher, Neil Weide, got most everything down for us. But it was still fun.

Some more interesting news. After I just put a link to the Lemond bikes website(among other team/bike/sponsor sites), I find this out. I have a Lemond Zurich bike on order that is taking a while, I think. The order did get faxed by the soon-to-be-missed Matt N right before the Trek Store US-wide super sale, March 27th - 30th, so I'm sure all the stores and the company as a whole are recovering from that. If there is any issue at all with me not getting the bike, I'd be perfectly fine with that. I'm stretching the budget and selling current stuff to make this carbon framed beauty happen, but I don't really really need it. So if I find out that they aren't going to take all my money, I'm ok with that. But, my guess is this is my last chance at ever owning a carbon bike. If it happens, I sure hope it's worth all the hype. If not, I'm going completely luddite. Steel frame, either down-tube or bar-end shifters, and 32-spoke wheels. I've been eying this frame/fork for a while and wish I would have seen it before I got my Bianchi. Especially after my successful venture with this product. The Reelight setup has been on my racing machine for a couple weeks now and I'm very impressed with it. On the Bike Master's Century, Doug was in the follow vehicle and mentioned that my rear blinky was as bright or brighter than all the others. I never have to think about batteries or even turning them on. They just work all the time I'm riding and are just about all I need for road riding. I do wish that the front light could mount up on the handlebar and have an option for constant light instead of blinking. I'm hoping the company will explore this possibility. Have your bike shop order you a set through J&B Importers. It's a little pricey, but well worth it to have extra safety that you don't ever have to think about.

This weekend is the Spring Cycling Classic in Lincoln. Come one, come all and enjoy the bountiful sunshine and mild conditions. Oh wait, it's gonna be 30-40, windy, and possibly still raining in the morning. Real recent forecasts have the rain/snow ending early Saturday morning, like before sunrise. So hopefully that will pan out for you courageous racers out there. I will be helping with registration, then following a group with a truck full-o-wheels. Should be good times. If you are racing, keep this mantra in mind. (Warning, harsh lingo in said mantra.)

Riding has been a little scarce recently, just like my posting. I work from 11:30am - 8:30pm Mon - Thurs this month, so it's hard to get up early, eat food, then get excited about riding alone for a couple/few hours THEN going into work. Much depression shall ensue this month. So if anyone has some hours free in the morning and wants to help motivate me to get outside, let me know. Otherwise, I'll see ya'lls on the weekends.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Races, on-call, family rides.

So from the sounds of things, riding on the first extremely nice day of the year is not going to be a huge group gathering? I'm on call in the AM till noon...thirty....ish. I usually skip out of the last half hour since we rarely get calls anyway. Lots of people are heading out of town to either Iowa for road racing or Norfolk for some single track action. Bryan mentioned something about riding with people he refers to as "family" but apparently, that doesn't include us?? What gives bro-skee?

So anyway, I'll head outside for a while in the afternoon if anyone left in Omaha wants to join. Respond or give me a call.