Monday, March 31, 2008

Saturday Ride

Ride - Celo Pacific Club Ride
Route - Inland Route

Starting this ride my goal was to stay with the group up the main climb, and let the chips fall as they may after that.  As we started the ride it looked like I would be able to accomplish that because the pace was pretty slow, however as we hit the hill my quads started to burn.  I was dropped climbing to Deer Springs Road, but was able to hang during the run towards Circle R Dr.  I was unable to stay with the lead group during the main climb, I just did not have the power.  That I understood, but the annoying thing was that I was completely dropped on the run towards the school house which is a rolling downhill run.  I definitely need to work on my burst accelerations, top speed, and cornering.

After the regroup I was able to pull myself together and did a couple of strong pulls during the run in to Oceanside.  In all it was a good ride that provided some valuable feedback.

Friday, March 28, 2008

A Nice Casual Ride

Tonight was supposed to be a nice easy going ride. After 6 months off I finally got my friend on a bicycle. And i was easily cruising at about 18 mph.

But then...

I almost ran over a skunk and got sprayed.

Then to make matters worse I fell at the train tracks trying to move backwards away from the tracks as a train came through.

Let's see what happens tomorrow.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Painfully Obviuos

Please file this under painfully obvious:

Friday, March 14, 2008


I bought some rollers tonight.  I am a excited to try them out, but also a little scared.   I will report about what happens.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Tour de Murrieta Circuit Race

Last Sunday I raced in the Tour de Murrieta and had a wake up call.  This was my first circuit race, and with the laps at 3 miles I thought that Audrey would be able to keep up.  Unfortunately, due to me getting tired I started to get lazy on my shifting, which of course slowed me down.  That was not the wake up call though, due to the Cat V's inability to go smoothly through the turns there was A LOT of surges.  After three laps my legs were fried and I was dropped.  All my training focussed on endurance and hill climbing had not prepared me for this.

End result, I finished the race and I was not last.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

History of the Tour de France

I was going to post about how I did at the Tour de Murrieta circuit race, but I was sidetracked by this on youtube.


Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Cycling Clubs

I have been thinking of joining a cycling club, not only so that I can have someone to talk to (my wife is a little sick of it), but really so I could have some training partners.  Looking around the internet I found that Celo Pacific was my local club and I went on a couple of rides with them and had a blast.  As there training rides start only a mile away from my house I was ready to send in my membership info, until the Boulevard Road Race.

At the race I was dissapointed to only see two guys from the club entered (actually there were two more that I did not see) and that they did not prepare together for the race.  On the other hand, I saw a nice tent for San Diego Bike Club, and they had a lot of guys entered that all lined up together at the start.  After doing some research on them it appeared that they put a lot of effort into their bike teams.  The Cat IV / V guys even do a mini training camp, have a designated coach, and the club rides work on specific goals.  The downside would be that I would have to drive to La Jolla for them.

So I was in a quandary, choose the local club, or go for the more "team" atmosphere.  While I was trying to make this decision I chose to stay away from the Celo Pacific group rides.  I feel bad using a club without any intention of joining them. But the other day, when I went to go do my time trial I saw ended up passing them on the road and was recognized instantly (Riding a classic Bianchi might have helped).  That has helped me make my decision.  Due to the fact that I would have to drive to ride with SDBC, and the size (I think I would get lost in the shuffle) I have decided to Join Celo Pacific.  Now I just need to save some money for the member's dues.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Bulldog Bike Race

March 1st found me at my second road race.  It was a hard decision to make, the Baker to Death Valley race and the Bulldog race were the same day, but in the end the logistics for Baker were too hard, so I raced local.

Arriving at the race I was very impressed by the size of it, if you ever have a chance to race at Camp Pendleton do it.  They know had to run a smooth event.  In fact I am almost tempted to sign up for the duathlon even though I don't like running anymore.

My warm-up for this race was better than my last, but once again I had a bad start position.  This time it was because I was at the wrong entrance to the start chutes.  As the race started moving, I felt pretty comfortable because this is a course that I had ridden before.  Things were going pretty great until we hit the first big hill.  I dropped my big ring perfectly, but I was not as successful with the rear cassette.  As the hill ramped up I over shifted and the chain dropped between the cassette and the spokes.  I was stuck and came to a stop.   Luckily I did not take anyone down and I got my feet off the pedals in time.  

I quickly reached back, got my chain free and started pedaling as hard as I could.  I quickly started to pass people, but some were from the heat before, and some from my heat.  As I went around the round-about and started back down hill I saw a pack ahead of me, and made my big tactical mistake.  I should have continued to push and bridged the gap back on;  I then could have sat and recovered.  Instead I let them go and I never saw them again.  

I then switched to time trial mode and tried to minimize my lost time.  After a couple of miles I was caught by two riders.  I sat on them for a while, but when I tried to get them to start taking turns pulling I killed what I had left in me and was dropped.  The next two guys that came buy I hooked on to the back of, but this time I just sat.  Although I did not say anything, in my mind I made the decision to not contest the sprint  in exchange of not pulling.

The results:

In my age group - 12th out of 23
In my heat - 31st out of 81
Time to complete - 1:17
Avg. Speed - 21.3 MPH

What I learned:

- I need to work on my shifting!!
- I set a new high heart rate of 191 from 185.
- Always bridge the gap, sitting exposed is death.
- There is some serious strength in my legs, and the weight loss has helped, which makes me feel better about the technical problem.

Boulevard Road Race

I know it was over a month ago, but I am finally getting around to do a write up for the Boulevard Road Race (.pdf).  This was my first road race and it definitely hooked me on the sport.

As this was my first race I was pretty nervous about arriving on time and getting ready, so I arrived a couple hours early.  After watching the collegiate I learned that bike races are pretty boring to watch, at least on a downhill.  The different groups would just blow by and disappear.  Now watching the racers struggle up the hills, that might have been more exciting.

Eventually I started my warm-up, which was pretty pitiful,  I need to buy a trainer, and almost missed the start of my race because I can't read a clock.

My starting position was pretty poor, but as we started to roll I slowly started to push up.  The race consisted of two laps, the first half of the lap being downhill, and the second making up the altitude.  The peloton was flowing pretty nicely down the hill, and riding in a pack like that was exciting.  There was a moment of excitement when a man jumped in front of the peloton, luckily no one went down.

All this enjoyment soon came to the end when we hooked a right turn and started to climb.  I was completely unprepared for the first climb and was in the wrong gear.  Although it only lasted a couple hundred feet, my heart rate jumped and I did not have enough time for it to recover before the long climbs started.  As we started up those I tried my best to stay on, but quickly realized that if i tried to keep the pace up and was going to end up on the side of the road.

I decided to back off, save myself, and hope to catch people that had blown up.   From this point on the race was just climbing, the downhill portion again, and then more climbing to the finish.  I was able to pass some people, and I was passed by a couple of guys.

The end result, I placed 37th out of 47.

What I learned:

I need a hear rate monitor (which I have since purchased) so that I can monitor my heart better.

I need to lose weight so that I can climb better.

I need to practice my turning.

I need to pay attention on what is coming up so that I am in the correct gear.

Next race, Bulldog Road Race at Camp Pendleton.