Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Sicko is icko

Well, being sick sucks. Usually get sick at the change of seasons. Sometime around the end of February and then again around June. I skipped getting sick in Feb, but we're full on now. Where should we start? How about last Thursday:

The ata scored a sweet demo bike. Cinelli Escapade or something like that. All carbon, don't know how it was constructed but it wasn't over sized aluminum and it didn't say Cannondale on the down tube. It was a nice ride. Wasn't the stiffest whip I've been on, but it was responsive and latterly compliant. Theres some industry jargon for you.

It had one of Cinelli's Ram stem/handlebar integrated junk on it. It looks sexy, but functionally it was a bummer. I needed about 2 cm more drop and the drops are flared out all wrong. H couldn't keep her hands off it as we lounged in the afternoon sun eating burritos while people watching. Yea, I ate a burrito kitted up. I believe they call that euro...sept' we were eating New England Mexican so I don't know what they call that.

So still on Thursday; The ride was good but the legs felt a little hollow. I kept the ride short 'in sweet figuring I just needed some extra rest being that I had put in a good few days of trainin'.
Woke up Friday morning with a sore throat and it was all down hill from there. The 40 billion vitamins I downed helped a lot but I still wasn't doing that well. Woke up Sunday still feeling like poo but decided to go to Church anyway.

The start line was in Vermont and yes, I ate that Twinkie before I raced. The 350 calories and 200% fat came in handy. Oh, so tasty. I'm usually one to go for the Little Debbie in my times of need but the cream filling is what sealed the deal. Sorry Deb.

The day before the race I was talking to a customer who had just started racing and didn't like the close proximity and elbows that come with a race. Its one of my favorite parts. I love throwin' them bones. Shortly after my race started, I tangled bars and ate some delicious VT grass. I wondered if it was organic as I curled up and prayed that none of the 42 deep field ran me over. All I could do was smile at the irony as I got back on.

So about a lap and a half later I had picked my way through the field and felt fantastic considering I was on day three of sick. The sick single track and rollers that you could pump kept me in the game as this wasn't no damn roadie course. I made the trip solo and had to hand bottles off to myself this week. No biggie until I came through the feed the last time and heard that the small group I was with was the lead group. I didn't want to loose time cuse shit, I was in the lead group! So I skipped my feed. I watched the two gentlemen attack each other up the long climb that starts the lap only to catch back up to them in the sweet single track that VT has to offer. I attacked in a single track section that I was riding particularly well and dropped the duo. About a mile from the finish and only a long steady climb between me and a beautiful win everything got dark. "hey, who turned the lights out?"

It was everything I had to keep the pedals turning as one after another came by me. I finished 6th and as you can tell from my face, in a world of hurt. I really wish I knew what I was thinking when that photo was taken.

I got beat. I put my cards down on the table and someone else had a better hand. Plain and simple. I've been amazed at how stacked the competition is this year. 5 min. separated the winner from 16th place. 5 min. Thats not that much time in a race that lasts an hour and a half to two hours. I think the competition in the North East is especially good, better than a National even. One of the NORBA Nationals in California had 5 people in the class that I race in. This past weekend? 42 people toeing the line at a local. I get very frustrated that I haven't been able to bump up to semi-pro. I've been on the cusp but haven't been able to pull it off for whatever reason. I'll have a fantastic race here or there but I'm unable to get the string that I need. Maybe it's physical. Maybe its the fact that I'm a mental head case and put waaaayyyy too much pressure on myself. Maybe this is as good as I'll ever be. Something inside me is starting to change. I can feel it. I'm more excited about the adventure ahead then I am about doing well. I was more excited to ride some fantastic single track in Vermont then I was about who was going to be there and how I was going to do. Its a stubble change but a change that I can sense. I'm 22 years old, I've gotta stop taking myself so seriously and enjoy the ride.

Here's to the next adventure.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

I don't have a good title right now.

Check out the changes! I finally spent a little time to gussy up the page a bit. I don't know about the header, but maybe I'll get around to fixing that in the next 6 months.

Life has come hard in the last week. There isn't much I can do but take it as it comes. And thats a hopeless feeling when there isn't anything you can do to console the one that you love other than be there.

The cold rain was fun. Did a number on the trails and I'm concerned they won't dry fast enough for me to do some of my workouts on the mtb. I've really been enjoying mixing things up and doing some good rides on the mountain bike. The dully doesn't beat me up nearly as much as the hard tail did. Plus being out in the woods alone, you don't have to deal with people getting out of their cars threating to beat you up or throwing glass bottles out their windows at you (both happened last week).
I was checking out my calender yesterday and there are 8 or 9 weeks of racing finishing with the U.S. MTB Nationals at Mount Snow. It'll be a perfect block for me to actually start my season and hopefully going pretty good by the end of it. The start of the block may get delayed in starting by a week or two, but we're taking it as it comes.

I've been kicking around the idea of doing a 24 hour race in August. I think solo would be a good adventure. Adventure is exactly what I'm looking for right now. A two man team might be a better idea or even a four man team. I've also been thinking about offering my services for the Trans Rockies. The Trans Rockies is a 7 or 8 day mtb race in Canada over the Rocky Mountains. I've read stories of rich people signing themselves up and not being able to find a partner (you need to do this race with a partner) Other people have offered their bicycle riding services only to have the rich guy pay for the whole thing (it's at least a cool G all things considered). I can ride my bike and I'd need a rich guy to pay for me to go, so maybe I'll put my name on the list and see what happens? That'd be some adventure.
I haven't talked about these options with the important people in my life, they are just things kicking around inside my head right now.

The Yankees are playing the Sox this week. Although it doesn't have anything to do with cycling, its a great time to be in Boston. Let the shit talking begin.

Let's see what the week brings.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Yo! Where you at?

Free Sager man
I got my dirt game on
Adjusting the man guns
It was a pretty big field
Whole Shot
I got the whole shot and proceeded to drill it without getting bogged down. A lead group formed but the pace never got to my liking, so I backed off a bit and fell back. In retrospect I should have just stayed put because I ended up drilling it for the rest of the race anyway.
Deep in the pain cave
The final placing totally blew, but I know what I need to work on. The things I've improved on over the winter are really good things to improve on I've just got to keep my head in the game and not get disappointed. We're talking seconds and I bump up quite a bit so we're right there.

I almost got attacked by a hawk the other day. It was pretty intense.
House of God
Lots of wedding stuff got crossed off the list
I'm usually eco sensitive but if I'm going to roll, I might as well roll big.
Represent 'da hood
The H2 in the background was my first choice, but the Escalade has a fireplace as well as huge flat screen TV along with a gazillion other features. Its also got enough room for me and the rest of my 9 person posse. Roll big.
I got to roost some killer trails in my old stomping ground.
Glory Hill
Gunks - Undercliff
It was a tight ride. And when I say tight, I mean all the killer hiking trails pedaler folk aren't supposed to be on. Power slides are also very in.
As are Segways.

They are the new Buuuurrrraaapppppp, Burap.

As always, more adventures are on the horizon.