28 April 2007

Quien es mas macho?

Well folks, the answer to that question is a simple one today. Karl Kaiser es mas macho. We had planned to do a 60-ish mile, steady, hard-ish tempo ride today and got a motorpace session behind Der Kaiser instead. Der Kaiser has been riding very well as of late and did the 95 mile RR in Rock Hill two weeks ago and then promptly took 10 days of the bike. He and his fresh legs showed up this morning and were feeling very frisky. He actually told Mrs. Der Kaiser that he felt 'great' when they were on their way to the ride. When Der Kaiser feels 'great', we usually get F-ed, hard...like prison!
He pulled about 75% of the 60 miles this morning and the pace never changed or wavered. If you want an example of the speed, we made it to the Cricket store in 90 minutes, and we went the long way, through Eastover! The entire 60 was covered in 2:45, which is impressive when you consider there were only six of us on the ride and it was WINDY. And we didn't go hard, at all, until we got out of the Fort. Today was one of those days when you rarely see the front, but are just whipped shit when you get home. I feel bad for NID and Joel, as they got shelled off before we made the first turn.

I was a bit tired about halfway through, but could do little about it. Considering I've ridden three days this week and all three were hard, I'm feeling okay with myself. Next week will be a rest/recovery week. I plan on riding, but only pulling #1 around in the Burley....maybe the Thursday ride...we'll see...

Crit report Tuesday. No ride tomorrow...baby duty (doody) calls...

27 April 2007

Thursday's group ride

What looked like it was going to be a 5 man affair, quickly gained participants and became a REALLY good, quick tempo, paceline ride. There's not enough light to do the entire Elon loop yet, but we still got a touch more than 40 miles last night. The wind was out of the S/SW, which made for a weird, swirly wind on certain sections. I think we actually had a tailwind on the way home. Either that, or everyone was strong last night. All I know is, we stayed above 40kmh on Clarkson, and it's a false flat. When the road turned flat and tipped downhill, RW hit the gas and picked it up to a tick under 50kmh. This put a few into difficulty and put Il Professore out the back. He loves it when someone hits the throttle after he takes a pull! :) We gathered back up and rode easy tempo all the way to Shop. Of course, the pace picked up after the light, leading to the bridge sprint. Osama (who has shaved, so we need another nickname) produced a stellar leadout. I saw RW shift down to the 13 and twitch, so I hit the 12 and jumped hard. Head down and no looking around produced a 70kmh top speed.

I felt pretty good last night and won both contested sprints. The first one took a little edge out of my legs for a while, but it came back around. I couldn't get my HR to stay high, nor could I get a deep, full lung breath, but it didn't seem to hurt me as I took my pulls and had little difficulty staying in. My legs could have produced longer, faster pulls, but the HR/lung situation was cause for a bit of self-preservation. ]

We saw ThePeanut out last night too. I think he's taken the hint and started riding alone. He says he's 'training with power' because his new iBike and training alone will make him faster. Maybe, but he still can't control his bike or turn...

Still waiting for parts from FSA so I can fix the Ibis. My crankset didn't come with some blue, teflon, crush washers and therefore, wouldn't tighten down all the way. If the washers don't do the trick, they're going back on EBay and there will be some D/A cranks going on. Shimano has the outboard shit figured out.

Riding this weekend may be an iffy proposition as the H.O.'s mother is leaving. I really want to ride Saturday, but it may just be a quick loop of the Fort when #1 goes nap-nap.

24 April 2007

Round 7

Holy crap! The seventh installment of the Tuesday Worlds was QUICK! I had a 27 mph average and I am the official timekeeper, so my computer is probably dead on.
PMC has decided that the neutral lap has worn out it's welcome, so it was go time from the gun. The initial break was quickly reeled in and several little attacks were thrown, but nothing had a chance tonight. There were just too many horses in attendance. There was very little filler out there tonight, and what was there quickly got shuffled out the back.
The first 15 minutes were balls-out. Thankfully, a semi pulled across the road between turns one and two and forced the entire group to slow to a crawl. I owe that dude some cash. Several folks said that it couldn't have come at a more opportune time.
The remaining 35 minutes seemed to drag on and on. It was possibly the longest 57 minutes ever. Most of the folks who are 'cornering challenged' were absent, save for the tri-dork with the tricep implants. That dude is downright scary in the turns. Handling and triathletes are not terms one usually uses in the same sentence.
It came down to a big, hairy dragrace. Jay Charles ended up taking it by about 4 inches. He should though, he's a flipping 2.
I felt pretty good considering I am sharing a room with a 4 day old baby. Riding at a high level and sleep deprivation are not good bedfellows. I closed a couple gaps at well over 30mph and felt a bit of form trying to return. Of course, that form is going to be shot in the ass with two kids under two in the house. Looks like I'll be concentrating on cyclocross this winter.
I'm going to try to make the ride on Thursday, but we'll see...

21 April 2007

No rest for the weary

So Thursday night, I planned to ride, but the H.O. put the kibosh on that, which is okay considering she is/was 9 months preggo. We had a nice dinner @ Pasta Fresca and some ice cream @ Cold Stone before retiring to the casa. Friday rolled around and we got up bright and GD early to go to the hospital to have us a young'un.

We got to the maternity ward @ 9:30 and they put the H.O. on all of the monitors. Of course, once hooked up, the contractions began and proceeded to get closer and closer. By the time she got wheeled back to the O.R., they were 3 minutes apart! Did I mention we chose to get the elective C-section? I highly recommend it, as it's easier for EVERYONE involved.

The H.O. got her spinal block and went under the knife @ 12:03. Ten very short minutes later, Joshua David was born.

He tipped the scales at a whopping 8 pounds 12 ounces and measured out @ 21 inches. He and momma are doing great! He looks a lot like his big brother, which is a good thing.

I'm sleeping at home tonight, as there was little shut eye to be had last night in the room. Between feeding him every 2 hours or so and the nursing staff busting in every moment, no one got any sleep. Well, Joshua did, but that his gig right now! As for the aforementioned nursing staff, those ladies should be serving search warrants. They knock lightly and then kick the door in!

I did manage a ride this afternoon. 2 hours in the sun will clear your head and allow some decompression. I feel like the Grinch at the end of the movie, when his heart grows and grows. You just don't know how much you can love something until you have a baby!

18 April 2007

Round 6

Round 6 of the TNWCCS went off last night. We were met with a blistering tailwind up the front stretch, which meant that the headwind would be waiting for us on the back.
PMC doesn't seem to be able to follow directions, so instead of our normal, neutral lap, he just took off, forcing us to chase immediately. No big deal, since he was back in 2 laps. Breaks seemed to be constantly going and the crit stayed lined out for the first 15 minutes. Around 20 minutes, a break went and a few guys bridged across the gap. Pretty much all of the horsepower was in the break, leaving the second group with me, my brother, Il Professore, Matt and Reed to take up the action. The rest of the group was populated by guys who couldn't go through a freaking corner. Chris actually asked me to send one of the guys to the back. Which I did, since he looked like he was on the ragged edge of control through turn four. At 30 minutes, I felt the tell-tale bounce that comes when a rear tire is going down. It's what I get for riding through the gutter to get around some of the gapers. I stopped and changed the tube and jumped back in for a few laps, but it was all for naught, as the break wasn't coming back and my heart just wasn't in it.
Charles Ridleheuber (Bicycle Link-Beaufort) and Dr. LP went heads up for the sprint and Charles got it by a half-wheel. It was a good race that was pretty damn fast.

I could tell that I'd been sick for 4 days. My legs were pretty empty and about 15 minutes in, my stomach started to sour. I feel better for going out to ride though. You don't realize how much a stomach bug drains you until you try to ride at a high level. My electrolyte balance is still all messed up too.

Right now, we're standing @ 50 hours and counting until Il Bambino numero due arrives.

14 April 2007

OooFFF , ouch my tummy...

So Tuesday was great, felt good, rode well, could move around in the pack at will. Wednesday brought a bit of an upset tummy and a lot of gas. I was painting the newly repaired ceiling in the dining room and started to feel hot and really nauseous. About 45 minutes later, I had a base camp set up near the toilet in our bathroom. I spent the next 12 hours really getting to know the quality of our plumber's work. It also allowed me to assess the the tilework on the floor. Some soul searching was done as well. I felt like I would be climbing the stairs towards the white light at any moment. My last "episode" was approximately 5:30 am Thursday. I've eaten two meals since then and feel like re-constituted shit after eating. On the up side, I have lost 6 pounds since Wednesday morning. If this is the life of a runway model, I don't want it.
I feel almost human today. I'm just wicked tired from missing a full 24 hours of sleep and recoup time. That's what'll drain you. Well, that, and vomiting 50+ times. I lost count...

I did get The ManHole cleaned out today and installed Mandrus' ceramic BB. His D/A BB felt like someone had poured sugar in it. Oh, and I busted my lip while removing it. In Shimano's (in)finite wisdom, they designed a steel tool to go with an alu part. Well, the tool slipped when it ate the alu and my face came down cleanly on the TT. Nice...! I let fly a stream of obscenities that would make an Alaskan crab fisherman blush.

The coming rains will likely was out any ride until Sunday afternoon. I plan on going out Monday to see how I feel. The crit is a go, for now...

The H.O. is 5 days from dropping the newest addition to the clan, so all of these plans may get roundfiled.

Don't ask me, I just work here....

11 April 2007

TNWCCS Round 5

Well, the 5th installment of the TNWCCS went off last night, and fortunately, it was a bit safer and less helter/skelter than Round 4. There were no crashes or even near misses last night, but there are still some folks that really need to think about what they are doing while they are out there. The cyclocross kid must have had some sort of spinal fusion as he doesn't seem to be able to turn his head to see where he's going when pulling into, or out of the line. I finally had enough and yelled at him with 3 to go. Of course this was after he turned left into the main group and nearly took out the guy in the Felt kit.
A certain VB who keeps coming out needs to spend some quality time learning to turn. This ain't no Cat5 crit. Get off your brakes and stop squaring off the corners! Oh, and get some big boy gears...! He's out there though. The rest of the Pink Ladies don't seem to have the testicular fortitude to show.
Any the fat kid on the Lemond who kept getting shelled and jumping back in the front should probably just stay home. I got tired of closing his gaps and worrying about his lack of skill and fitness. He looked like two octupi making love.

Anyway, the neutral went as expected when PMC is out. It's more like 3/4 of a neutral lap. PMC and 3 others attacked from the gun and opened a pretty nice gap. It came back pretty quickly. This seemed to be the theme for the evening. Things were constantly going and getting pulled back. Even the biggest break of the night got pulled back in two laps. The race was really steady and we averaged a tick over 40 kmh for the 56 minuutes. It was the first night we've kicked it to the full 50 minutes and the extra 5 minutes were definitely felt.
The group slowed to a crawl with 2 to go and then all hell broke loose. Attack after attack went and gap after gap appeared. On the last lap, a group of 6 got away with 1km to go and being the dope that I am, I decided to close it down myself. It's that whole, "What would Jens Voigt do?" thing...! I got across at 55 kmh and should have ridden straight past, but I sat up and got killed in the sprint. Yet another field finish. I did feel good last night though. Better than I've felt in a long time. I hate to miss Rock Hill on Saturday, but the H.O. could drop the baby at any moment. That kind of takes precedence over going to race.
The way my luck runs, I'll be lining up for the Masters 35+ race and my phone will ring...

Oh, and a big shout out to the guys at Crank Brothers. I dicked up one of my pedals a few weeks ago in the crit when I caught it in the bottom corner. I needed a stainless outside replacement plate. I emailed them and they sent out a complete rebuild kit, including all replacement plates and bearings...for a PAIR of Quattros. I've joined the CB tribe! Bigger companies could learn a thing or twelve from those guys! Great products and service goes a LONG way!

09 April 2007

No riding this weekend

I woke up Saturday morning to 28 degrees and a howling 20+ mph wind. I'm not getting paid to ride and I knew that the chances of anyone else showing up were thin, almost anorexic. I finished the floor in the backroom instead. The only thing left to do is install the ceiling fan, and to be honest, it can wait.
Sunday was Easter and another day when getting dressed and showing up to the group ride was be little more than an exercise in futility. Most don't show on a normal, warm Sunday. It was about 38 degrees yesterday morning...

The yet unborn and un-named baby's room got a fresh coat of paint yesterday. It's still light blue, just a different shade of light blue. The H.O. made a decree, so I was obliged to re-paint. Smelling glue, paint and caulk for two days in a row has given me a blistering headache. That and the dust/pollen from mowing the grass last night.

I'm going to try to get out for a spin tonight to loosen up my legs...we'll see.

Crit tomorrow. Maybe it will be a little more controlled...I think I'll make an appeal for calm.

06 April 2007

2 days in a row...

It's been a while since I've actually been able to ride two days in a row, and I feel better for it.

Thursday night's ride was a small gathering, yet fun and quick. We did some good tempo, paceline work and got home before dark. I had some seriously heavy legs last night though...

Il Professore and I went out this afternoon for a little roll around the Fort and ended up meeting the BeerRide on their way out, so we turned and joined in. I won't say it was frightening, but it was a bit helter-skelter. Of course, I knew this going in, so you can plan for it. Either ride on the front, or on the back. The middle is the deathzone on Friday night. It was fun for what it was though...
I did get to pick at and wind up a certain person on the ride tonight. He obviously wasn't on his meds as he was quick to anger and just rode away. Fun stuff I tell you...! It's too bad he's such a dick.
ThePeanut made an appearance as well. He says he's been riding too hard, so he's taking some time to build back up so he'll be stronger. Yeah, April is the time to slack off on training. Good luck with that! He also got an iBike, which is possibly the worst powermeter type unit out there. He'll have plenty of time to look at it when he's off the back. He didn't say much tonight, which is rare. He still rides like a dope. The BeerRide is probably the place for him.

No ride tomorrow as it supposed to be ass-biting cold in the morning and I have to finish laying the tile in the backroom.

03 April 2007

Is there something in the water?

Jesus Pete! Tonight was a good old fashioned NASCAR short-track free for all. More on that in a moment...

The crit went off, as usual, with a very large group that included several new faces. A lot of these new faces are strong, but have ZERO handling skills in the pack. Holding a line seems to be a foreign idea to a lot of them. Inside/out or outside/in through the turns was the M.O. for most of them. One noob swung way outside and put Osama into the curb, and thus, ass over elbow into the grass. Thankfully, he went down in the grass and only his jersey was any worse for wear. Osama jumped back in after taking his free lap and was fine. That was the first incident...
The crit itself started off with a shot from PMC and a select group who chose to make a break on lap one. The group chased for the next five laps or so, with very few of us actually doing any of the work. I did a lot of chasing for 15 minutes and paid retail for it for the next 20. The wind was a factor tonight as well. A strong west wind was blowing up the backstretch, making the chase that much more difficult. More breaks went and came back through the first 40 minutes. The group was back, en masse, at 42 minutes and then the second incident of the evening occured. Another noob decided he wanted to move right. Unfortunately, Jay Charles was occupying that space. Jay came over on me, quickly, and we met carbon to carbon, and I'm not talking about carbon-based life-forms. His carbon r/d went directly into my front Carbone. The impact sheared his r/d off with surgical precision. It also rendered my front wheel into a shape resembling a Frito-Lay product. I shot dead right and into our own, local, national champion Jed. Fortunately, the three of us that all met in the middle are experienced enough to handle some contact and no one went to the tarmac. Thank God, b/c eating pavement at 25+ sucks. I did lose a chunk out of my right ankle from Jed's bike though...

Parts can be replaced/repaired...road rash scars last a long time. I guess I'll be making a trip to see Shrews tomorrow...

The Harrell's boys battled it out for the win. I couldn't really tell, but I think Jamie may have gotten the win.

01 April 2007

Weekend and getting better

Well, the general malaise I've been feeling seems to be making it's way out of town. Last weekend, I had one of those empty days, followed by a week of not feeling all that great, on the bike or otherwise.
Yesterday's ride seemed to indicate that I am going, and feeling better. We rode 55 miles in 2:45 at a good, even middle of the road tempo. I had little issue either holding the tempo or pushing the pace, and never really felt like my heartrate got terribly high. We started with 6, but lost Reed about an hour into the ride. He was going to Charleston today for the spring century and didn't want to overdo it. I told him that 55 miles wouldn't hurt him for Sunday, but he reminded me that he has ridden about 10 times since November and that survival was his game paln for the century. Considering they rode 4:08 last year, I be ducking for cover if I was him too!
I really need a chain for the Ridley too. It popped a few times yesterday and made one REALLY loud protest when I stood up in the 14 to go for the bridge sprint. Thankfully, it held together, but I'll be ordering a new chain tonight nonetheless.
I didn't even bother to get up to ride this morning. Everyone that would even think about riding on Sunday was in Charleston and waiting for any OutJokin' employees is an exercise in futility. The way my luck runs, ThePeanut would have been the only one to show. I woke up late and finished all of the paintwork in my newly renovated backroom. It looks damn nice, if I do say so myself. It actually looks like I had professionals do the work, rather than a troupe of orangutans. I've learned a few things about hanging and finishing drywall since I did the ManHole. The only thing left is the floor, and I'll be starting it this week. I won't say that it should be a quick project, as that usually leads to a monkey humping a football.

As for ThePeanut, he has been conspicous in his absence. Evidently, he thinks that the whole of the Columbia cycling community is out to get him. Paranoia? Party of one...! If he didn't ride like such a boob and just STFU, he'd be okay. NID said that ThePeanut almost took out the Beer Ride on Friday night and got yelled at. If you are getting yelled at by the folks on the Beer Ride, the problem is yours...

Anywho, Ill probably go out for a quick spin tomorrow night to loosen the legs. The are stiff and heavy from climbing up and down an 8 foot ladder for the past two days. Crit Tuesday...see you guys there! It's supposed to sunny and 85...