Friday, April 27, 2012

Voodoo Fire Pictures

Finally got all the pictures from last weekends race.  Enjoy the pics of me looking all nerdy racing with my eyeglasses on.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

New Team Kit!

New Pedal Pushers Cyclery team kit is in!  Not the greatest picture, but here it is:

Well, even if I don't win I'll at least look good out there.  Very cool team kit.  Nice job guys!

Monday, April 23, 2012

First Race Report, Voodoo Fire

The first race was the Voodoo Fire down in Pueblo, CO. This was a three lap 66 mile tight, twisty, and very rocky course with lot's of sharp shale rock. Here's the Garmin info:

This race was not without some good luck, and some bad luck. Starting with the bad luck, when I got up in the morning and went to put in my contacts I noticed that one was missing. Not a clue where the missing contact must have went I had to go to plan B. I wore my glasses instead which aren't exactly great for seeing around twisty corners. Since it was probably the most twisty course I'll see all year, I have to wonder how much better I would have done with my contacts, but that's how it goes. After a chilly warm up, it was time to race! I was the second person to the singletrack. Me and the racer ahead of me spent quite awhile getting through the tail end of the 20-29 age group before things cleared up. I was able to pass him and was ahead for awhile, but then was passed by him and another racer during the second lap. As I was riding along I saw one of the racers who was ahead of me on the side of the trail with a flat tire. That meant that at the time I knew I was at least second. I picked up the pace to see if I could close the gap, but the racer I thought was ahead of me was no where in sight so I played it safe on the last lap so not to fall victim to a flat myself. I crossed the finish line at an official time of 5:06:30.1. The announcer said he thought I may have been first for 30-39 age group, and as I was walking to gather my things it was made official. I ran into the racer I thought was first. He had flatted four times before calling it quits. Lucky for me, but terrible luck for him. I really hated to hear that since I know how hard everyone trains all year, and to be disqualified because of a flat just sucks. Next race my friend. So there you have it, first place in 30-39 age group!
1st Place!

It's good to know that all the hard work has paid off. I know my loved ones have put up with a lot over the last few months since I haven't always been in a great mood after hardcore dieting, and riding in the freezing cold winter nights. Thank you to my beautiful wife and my friends for putting up with me! This win is for all of you. And of course, couldn't have done it without my team Pedal Pushers Cyclery! Great start to the season!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Sylvan Island Stampede Photos

Just a few photos from the race last weekend.

Race requirement: Have a good time.

It's probably best the course tape covers my face... who wants to see that anyway!?

Craving the turn

Pushing before a short steep hill

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Training Day In Santa Barbara

My wife and I had a great trip to Santa Barbara.  The hotel had bikes to use so that's how we got around.  Downtown was about four miles from the hotel.  We headed out in the morning to do some shopping, then went to Trader Joe's and grabbed stuff for a picnic by the beach.

Cruiser Bikes by the beach
After basking in the sun for awhile we headed to The Brewhouse for some samplers.

Samplers at The Brewhouse Santa Barbara, CA

After The Brewhouse we went to Union Ale for four more samplers and then off to dinner at Brophy Brother's which over looked the ocean.  There was an hour wait at Brophy Brother's so we went to a local pub.

Telegraph White Ale at pub while waiting to be seated for dinner...  that bottle was two and half glasses worth!

After a day of fun in the sun we headed back to the hotel for some much needed hot tub time then off to bed.  Awesome day!  Rode about thirteen miles in total at a nice slow cruiser pace.  Great training day!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Recovery Week A Success!

After taking off Monday and Tuesday,  followed by a light ride on Wednesday, by Thursday I felt much better for Friday's two hours with short thirty second max efforts.  It was the right amount of intensity to test the waters and see how I was feeling after hitting the wall last week.  I felt great! I was even able to ride with some Pedal Pushers teammates for a little bit.  Thursday I shuttled Mount Falcon with some midwestern friends whose weak lungs couldn't handle too much climbing in altitude.  It took me awhile to acclimate myself so I felt their pain.  After the ride, I rushed to pack and make it to the airport for a much deserved weekend trip to Santa Barbara, CA that my wondeful wife surprised me with.  She is a flight attendant (therefore we fly free) so we try do these weekend trips whenever I'm not training or racing on the weekends.  Best wife ever!  Biking, travel... yep, I have a rough life, I know.

My trail bike, 2008 Giant Trace X1, on Mount Falcon.  The gold RaceRace Atlas handlebars and Crank Brothers Joplin dropper seatpost is my sad attempt to make it an all mountain rig... gotta love the gold bling though!

Picture of me climbing White Ranch and somehow smiling... yes, I love the climbing as much as the downhill... I'm one of those weird kids.

Balcony of the hotel in Santa Barbara, CA!  Can't believe I'm saying this, but the humidity feels nice with the 70's degree weather... and humidity is one of the big reasons I left the Midwest in the first place!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Parasympathetic Overtraining

Eureka! I've found it! After doing some research on over training I figured out what was going on! Whenever you see articles about overtraining it always talks about your HR being higher than normal. With Parasympathetic Overtraining the opposite happens, your HR is lower. This happens to a lot of endurance racers and is exactly what was happening to me. As blogged about in my topic “The Dreaded Dead Legs Experience”, it was getting harder for me to keep my HR up during my Wednesday threshold (maximum steady state) workout even though my perceived exertion felt like I was really pushing it. By Friday I was cashed. There's a great blog post about it here: Looks like I really need to start paying more attention to my perceived exertion especially during hard training blocks. Maybe now that I'm more aware of the signs of it I can better prevent it from happening again.

Monday, April 2, 2012


Feeling pretty let down after failing one of the most critical training days in my winter/spring training. It was apparent I needed a break physically, and mentally. Luckily, I had some out of town guests that were good friends of my friends back in the Midwest that needed a mountain bike tour guide. I decided to bring them to a local trail that was easy to shuttle to the top so they didn't have to do much climbing in the high altitude, and I could save my legs from climbing as well. We also met up with even more Midwest vacationers who are good friends with one my Colorado transplant friends. We all enjoyed some down hilling together and then met up with my wife at the bottom who brought sangria and a snack while we waiting(waited) for (the)cars to be retrieved from the top of the mountain.  Best wife ever!  Great times were had and it was awesome to ride with somebody other then my own thoughts. I also took a break from logging my calories and over indulged in some really good grilled food for two days. Made some new friends, ate some good, and even had some good beer for the first time in weeks. After a fun weekend it's time to get back on track and start my recovery week. Going to cut out a day off of training and really going to listen to the body. If I'm not feeling it from the start I'm not going to attempt riding. Recovery at this point is much more important then(than getting in a ride) getting a ride in.

The Dreaded Dead Legs Experience

Well, it's happened. I've hit a wall that I've never hit before. The dreaded feeling of dead legs as result of over training. As blogged about on March 26, I had a hard week of training and positive results. I want into the beginning of the second week of the training block with high hopes of having another great week. Monday's VO2 max went well. I took it easy on Tuesday for my recovery ride by hitting the dirt jumps at the local Golden Bike Park... maybe should have took a few more breaks between hitting the jumps since my legs aren't used to jumping. Wednesday I should have took the hint that over training was occurring and backed off. I had three Maximum Steady State intervals with efforts uphill. The first interval I felt a little weak, but decided to do the second interval anyway since sometimes the first interval your still not quite warmed up. The second interval I was able to do, but it was a lot more of an effort then what it should have been. Stubbornly I did the third interval anyway. I should have did the first interval and known that a recovery was needed, but I guess I figured a day off on Thursday was going to be enough... that was a mistake. Friday was a 3.5 hour ride with a 2 hour tempo effort. I had to cut the tempo effort short by 20 minutes because I could feel the effects of over training worse then ever. I was really hoping by cutting the Friday training short I'd somehow miraculously recovery enough for Saturdays 5 hour hard endurance training. Instead Saturday was a disaster. I couldn't even hit the low HR zones to warm up. I ended up doing a 3.5 hour death march ride before calling it quits. My diet also played a key role in my over training. On Thursday I broke 150 was done to 149. I was so caught up on trying to hit my max power to weight ratio that I continued to cut calories during two critical weeks that I needed the extra calories. Fail.