Saturday, December 30, 2006

Who Needs To See Anyways??

So I woke up this morning at 7:15 for my scheduled 3.5 hour ride and I look outside to see some really dense fog, not exactly the best conditions to be riding a bike when the cars can't see me. But I figured what the heck, I'll ride anyways, I gotta die sometime. I ate my big bowl of oatmeal, got dressed, which took about 20 minutes to throw on all my clothes, filled my bottles and headed out the door to enjoy the misty, 38 degree weather. I headed out towards Pewaukee and ended up getting lost after taking a wrong turn. I was supposed to take a right on a road and ended up taking a left and going completely the wrong way. Only after about 5 miles when I was supposed to take another turn did I realize my mistake and by then I figured I'd just wing it and ride around. I figure there are two benefits to getting lost, one is that you get to ride on roads that you've never ridden before, and secondly you get to enjoy the aerobic benefits of riding for a lot longer than you expected since you can't find your way home. Good times, good times. So after I found a road I recognized I made my way home and ended up riding for 3 hours 53 minutes, not bad at all for a December day in Wisconsin. I definitely ate a lot when I got home, I was starving and probably had a little too much as my stomach was a little sick after everything that I crammed down my throat. Anyways, tomorrow is supposed to be a crappy day as it's going to start raining tonight and all day tomorrow so it doesn't appear I'll be riding outside. I'm going to get up early and clean my bike up as it got a little wet and muddy today and then I'll be riding for 2.75 hours on the trainer and probably watch a couple of movies. After that I'll do some housework and then take a nap to rest up for the nighttime festivities. I'm looking forward to some steak and just a couple of beers tomorrow night at my friend Jason's house and of course I'm looking forward to watching the Packers beat the Bears. Well, until next time.....Happy New Year!!

Friday, December 29, 2006

December or March?!

The weather lately has been great for December in Wisconsin, with temps ranging between 40 and 45 degrees during the day and we have absolutely no snow on the ground . Today it is supposed to be 40 degrees but I'll be stuck inside at work and tomorrow has a forecasted high of 41 degrees and I'll definitely be outside riding. The last few days of training have been pretty good with a roller ride of 1.5 hours on Wednesday along with the first weight workout in my Strength phase. The ride was just a casual ride on the rollers and I worked a bit on smoothing out my pedal stroke a bit more. The first day of heavier weights felt really good and was almost too easy but I'll see how I progress at this weight level, I may add 10 more pounds to each exercise after tonight's workout if it seems too easy again. The only thing that might keep me from adding more weight is a little pain in my left knee, I'll see how that feels after tonight and go from there. Anyways, last night was a trainer ride of 2 hours and I was going to do Muscle Tension intervals but decided to just do Foundation Miles due to the aforementioned left knee pain. It's better just to take it easy now so that I don't wreck the knee even more. It feels good this morning so I'm not too worried about it. As for today's plan, it's a scheduled rest day on the bike but I'll be doing weights right after work. Tomorrow like I said is looking good as far as the weather so I'll be doing a 3.5 hour ride from New Berlin to Pewaukee, down south to Muskego and Big Bend and then back to New Berlin. Should be about 65 miles or so, not too bad for the end of December!! Sunday there is an 80% chance of rain and possibly snow showers so I'm almost certain that there will be no outside ride. At this point it looks like I'll be doing 2.75 hours inside on the trainer at Foundation Mile pace.
Sunday night the Packers play for a possible playoff berth and of course it's New Year's Eve so there will be plenty of eating and some alcohol consumption as well. I'm going to do my best not to overeat but who knows how good my willpower will be after a few beers as well. Monday the Badgers play in the Capital One Bowl so that will be another occasion to eat and drink, but again hopefully not too much. I think I got over my weight plateau, at least the last couple of days, as I've lost about 3lbs over a week and I'm down to a stable 182 this week. I still have about 10lbs to lose but once I get in to the longer miles and get outside in March and April I'm sure it will just melt off. Well, I'll give an update after tomorrow's ride and hopefully Sunday, until next time........Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Staying Dry

If you read my last post from Saturday then you'll know that I fell in to a flooded river while trying to traverse a trail under a bridge. Well, Saturday night after I had warmed up a bit I was starting to feel a little under the weather and then I woke up Sunday morning with a nasty sore throat and head cold. I'm sure it wasn't related to falling in to the water as it wouldn't have come on that quick and BEING cold doesn't give you a cold. I'm sure it was something that had been waiting to hit me for a few days and I think all the shivering and trying to stay warm after falling in the water weakened my immune system enough to let the cold take hold. I tried to ride Sunday and managed about an hour before I was feeling too sick to continue so I decided to rest before we headed off to our X-mas festivities. Monday morning I woke up feeling a bit better after medicating myself Sunday night and it was a normally scheduled rest day so I didn't have to ride and basically rested most of the day. By Tuesday I felt really good again and of course had to come back to work and felt great by the end of the day. I had a ride scheduled for 2 hours and did almost all of that, 1hour 50 minutes, on the trainer with 10 Power Stomps thrown in as my secondary exercise. I cut it 10 minutes short because I didn't jump on the trainer until 8:15 and then by the time I was closing in on 2 hours my dog was bugging the heck out of me to be let outside to go to the bathroom. I jumped off the trainer at 1'50'' to let him out and by the time I got back in I just decided to forego the final 10 minutes as I was already cooled down and there was really no point in finishing 10 more minutes. So, anyways, I felt great overall and felt especially strong during my Power Stomps of which I was only supposed to do 6 but felt so good that I decided to do 10. Tonight I have a ride of 1.75 hours scheduled and also I'll be doing weight work. I kick up my weights tonight and jump in to the Strength phase of weight training where I decrease the reps and obviously increase the weight. I'll do this phase for the next 4 weeks and then go back down to the High Volume phase to allow my body to recover. After 2 weeks of the High Volume Phase I will do one more phase of Strength and then quit weights as most of my riding moves outside and all of my muscular work will be done on the bike. Tomorrow I have another ride of 2 hours (hopefully all of it) and then Friday is a rest day. The weather is looking iffy for outdoor riding this weekend but hopefully that will change before Saturday. Well, until next time.............

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Flooding And Hypothermia

Today was not the best day to go riding outside, not because of the 40 degree temperature or the 20-30mph winds, but because all of the rain we've had in the last few days created some nice big puddles and overflowing rivers. Well, if I would have ridden on the road today that wouldn't have been a problem but I decided to try to keep out of the wind and take my ride off the road on to the Root River Parkway which is shielded by lots of trees. To keep a long story short, I ended up falling over in about 2.5ft of water trying to cross a flooded section of the river as the trail went under a bridge. I was about 50 minutes in to my scheduled 2.5 hour ride so with my feet, left leg, and left arm completely soaked I made a beeline home as fast as I could and made it to my front door in about 40 minutes. Both of my feet were frozen, my left leg was numb and my left hand was frozen around the handlebars. I quickly threw off all my clothes and filled up the bottom of the tub with lukewarm water and stuck my feet in the tub. It actually hurt a little bit as my toes started to thaw out, mainly because I think I could actually feel pain now as they weren't numb anymore. After about 10 minutes of doing that I was a little disappointed that my ride got cut short so I decided to quick jump in to some dry clothes and run downstairs to finish my last hour on the trainer. I went harder than normal without actually thinking about it because I think I was subconsciously trying to get as warm as possible and forget about the shivering. Soooo, it was a good day of training despite getting really wet in 40 degree temperatures and heavy winds and I got in my 2.5 hours (1.5 on the road, 1 inside). Obviously it could've been better if I didn't fall over in a river but then I wouldn't have had this good story to tell. Well, tomorrow is supposed to be sunny, about 45 degrees and winds of only 5-10mph so I'm looking forward to a long, dry, ride on the road. Our X-mas Eve festivities start at 3:00 so I'm going to hit the road at about 9:00 and do 3-3.5 hours, which is over my scheduled 2 hours, but how many 45 degree days do you get in December? I'm hoping for 3.5 hours but we'll see how much time I have after eating breakfast, I'd like to hit 6 hours over 2 days for the second weekend in a row. Gotta get those aerobic hours in while I can......Until next time......stay dry!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Change of Plans

Well, the weather for tomorrow doesn't look like it's going to be all that good so I'm probably going to change my plans again. It's supposed to rain tomorrow and for a bit Saturday morning I think so most likely I'll stick with my normal rest day tomorrow and then ride for 2.5 - 3 hours on Saturday afternoon and then 2.5 on Sunday morning. I found out we don't have to be anywhere for X-mas Eve festivities until 3:00 so that gives me plenty of time to ride. Saturday is going to be a busy day as we have to finish up some shopping and get the house cleaned but I'll definitely make time for a ride. The weather looks good for Saturday afternoon and definitely for Sunday so should be no problem getting in my rides outside.
Well, the last few days have been pretty good rides on the trainer, as good as they can be inside I guess. I swapped my Tuesday and Wednesday rides around and did my 1 hour recovery ride on Tuesday just due to time constraints and then did 1.75 hours on the trainer last night after lifting weights. I felt great doing weights yesterday and will be moving in to the strength phase of lifting next week starting with my Wednesday workout as obviously X-mas is Monday and I won't be at work to use the weightroom. The bike workout felt great last night as well as I did 5x5 minute Muscle Tension intervals to build power. Basically it's just 5 minutes of riding with the front wheel propped up to simulate a hill and then staying in the seat I push a 53x13 or 53x14 gear for 5 minutes, rest for 5 minutes and repeat. It's a great way to build power and muscular endurance. Tonight I will be doing the opposite with a 1.75 hour ride on the trainer with 6x3minute Fast Pedals which help build a fast, smooth pedal stroke.
Overall, I'm just absolutely filled with motivation to ride, no winter blues here. I know I have a lot of work to do before race season so I don't mind that we are still at least 3 months away from getting outside on a regular basis, I could use the time before the first race. My weight is still staying the same and I weighed in this morning at 183 so I haven't really lost anything but didn't gain anymore either, just staying steady. Well, that's it....until next time.

Rain, Rain Go Away!

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Nice Weather....Too Bad.

So the weather has been great for December and it's been 40-45 degrees the last few days and is supposed to stay that way all week with the low temp of the week being Sunday with a forecasted high of 36. Too bad I'll be inside at work all week so I can't even get out and ride but there is hope for Friday as I have a vacation day scheduled. I'm on a scheduled rest week so I'm only supposed to do 2.5 hours on Saturday and 2 hours on Sunday. With Sunday being X-mas Eve I'm thinking I'm going to move my rides up a day and do 2.5 to 3 hours on Friday when the temp is supposed to be 45 and then do 2 to 2.5 hours on Saturday when it's supposed to be 38 degrees. Normally Friday is a rest day so it works out perfectly that I'll be on vacation and I can ride during the day and still do my normal Friday night dinner and beers (only 1 or 2 of course). I had a great two days of riding this past weekend with a little over 6 hours between Saturday and Sunday and it's going to be hard not to ride just as much this weekend but I'm sure my wife will have me busy preparing for X-mas so I might not have a choice. Anyways, yesterday was a rest day on the bike but I did do weights and today I'll be doing 1.75 hours on the trainer when I get home with some Stomps thrown in. Tomorrow is weights and a 1 hour spin on the trainer, Thursday is 1.75 hours again with Fast Pedal excercises. Friday and Saturday I'll do my plan above and then Sunday and Monday will probably be rest days because I'll be busy doing the family stuff for X-mas. I'll try to squeeze in a ride on Sunday though if I can, maybe an hour or hour and a half after all the festivities just to burn off some of the food that I know I'll consume in mass quantities. Overall I'm feeling o.k., I've had a toothache the last week or so and I went to the dentist today and all he did is take x-rays and re-schedule me for another appointment on Jan. 2nd. That means my tooth will hurt for another two weeks and hopefully it doesn't get any worse. It hasn't affected my biking but I've stopped eating Powerbars in favor of gels for the last week so it looks like I've got another two weeks at least of eating more of those gooey treats. As a side note, I think that gels must contain mass quantities of fat because I've gained 4 lbs. since last week and I'm sure it has nothing to do with the 2 days of family X-mas cookie baking that we did. I only ate like 50 cookies, that's what, like 5 grams of fat? It's gotta be the gels, I'll research it and let you all know, might need to eat a few more cookies as my placebo group. Until next time......

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Windy And Weary

Today was a fairly long day on the bike, about 3 hours and 45 minutes from New Berlin to Burlington to Alpine Valley and then back to Burlington to my final destination of my mom's holiday cookie day. Unfortunately I had a headwind almost the whole way heading south so that made the temps seem a little more frigid than the 50 degree temperature. Add that to the lack of any sun and it made for a ride that was just difficult given all the hills I did around Alpine Valley and my 2 trips up Johnson Rd. used in the State RR. Don't get me wrong though, it was great to get out in the middle of December for a ride of almost 4 hours. My legs are definitely sore but overall I feel o.k.. I took my camera with and took pics of some of the hills I had to climb, most of them not too long but all of them very steep. Tomorrow is supposed to clear up with a little sunshine I think starting around 9:00 so I'm going to ride at about 10:00 for 2 hours 45 minutes tomorrow, and I'll make sure it's an easier route than today to give the legs a little rest. I'll probably head out to the Waukesha area and do a loop around there and then one of my New Berlin to Muskego loops. Well, I'm keeping it short today, pretty tired so I'm going to take a shower (yes, I'm still stinky from this morning's ride) and then go to bed at about 10:00 or 10:30. Here are the pics I took

Johnson Rd. from the State RR course.......

A nice double dipper on Hargraves road between Johnson Rd. and Alpine.....

Hwy. 120 heading towards Alpine Valley, to get an idea of how long and steep it is, check out the cars at the bottom and then look at the speck of a car at the top.......

Kniep Rd, super steep, check out the sign at the bottom in relation to the top of the hill, it goes up really quick....

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Who Needs To Train.....

......not me! It certainly seems like that this week as it has been an extremely busy week for me, although most of the busy work is my own doing. I haven't trained this week as much as my schedule called for and it's leaving me a little miffed, but I have lifted a lot of weight off my shoulders by getting things done around the house that have weighed heavily on me the last few months....or basically since the summer when I stopped working on the house altogether to do all my races. That should all end tonight as I closed out a few things last night that should free up a lot of time. As an example I bought my wife a laptop for X-mas (an early gift) and of course I had to set it up for wireless access, add her preferred software (all licensed copies of course.. ;), move over her Itunes library, set up file and print sharing with our desktop PC, delete all the free-trial garbage that always comes on those things, and then finally test it all out. That took quite a while last night but now she is all set up and I won't have to do anything until she screws it up somehow in the next two weeks by downloading some game with spyware or something. Needless to say I didn't have much time to ride after that so I did a short 1 hour ride and called it a night. I also did my weight work yesterday as well so at least I got that completed. Well, today will be 2 hours on the trainer while I watch Talladega Nights with Will Ferrell, tomorrow will be weights again and a 1.5 hour ride that I'm doing to make up for missed time earlier in the week as I normally don't ride on Friday. Saturday is still holding out for temps around 50 and mostly cloudy so I'm going to do 3.5 to 4 hours and save gas in the process. I have a holiday get- together in Burlington so I'm going to ride down there from New Berlin and go out to East Troy and do some roads around Alpine Valley and the Johnson Rd. climb used in the State RR, and then head in to Burlington. Should be about 65-70 miles total, not too bad for December 16th! Sunday is supposed to be in the lower 40s I believe so I'll be doing my normally scheduled 2.75 hour ride but not sure where I'm going yet, hopefully I can get some other guys together for a group ride but we'll see. Overall I'm feeling good, it's still early in the year, the training year that is, as it's obviously not '07, so I'm not too worried about a couple of missed training hours earlier this week. My weight-loss is not happening as quickly as I had hoped as I haven't lost any weight since October and have stayed steady at about 182-185 but I think that part of it is the weight-lifting. I'm probably losing some fat but that is being offset by the weight gain of the muscle I'm building from lifting. Once I can really get out and do the long rides in the late winter/early spring then I should burn the fat without any issues. I'd like to get down to at least 173-175 by April and that should be good enough for me this year. I'm just a tad over 6ft so I don't want to get too much lower than that or I'll look sickly and probably would lose power as well. Well, that's all for now, until next time.........

Monday, December 11, 2006

A Little Overwhelmed......

It was an extremely difficult weekend for me to try to juggle my training and the housework that I needed to complete. Needless to say I didn't accomplish 100% of either task but I worked my butt off this weekend so I don't really have any regrets, it's not like I was just lazy and didn't feel like doing anything. I basically just didn't have enough time to do everything that I wanted to do, although I'm sure I could've done it all if I would've just skipped sleeping.....that's kind of necessary though. Anyways, here is what I did this weekend on the house....stripped, sanded, primed, painted and re-faced two whole cabinet bases along with installing all new hinges and knobs.....tore out my old kitchen supply lines (plumbing) and installed new lines, shutoff valves, and replaced some old copper and under-sink steel pipe with all new PVC pipes.....ripped off my existing countertops and installed new old sink and faucet went out with the old countertops so I also put in a new sink and faucet and along with that a new garbage disposal.....tore down all my old tile backsplash, spackled any rough spots and prepped it for my new backsplash.......and finally, I installed a new dishwasher. That was just the work on my house, I also had to do a lot of running around and had other things to take care of as well that cut in to the biking time. Needless to say, it was just a nutty weekend.....
So, on to the training info.....Saturday was a cold, windy day and not exactly riding weather but I managed to fight the weather right away in the morning and got out for a 3 hour, 20 minute ride and came back feeling pretty sore, as I think all my joints were frozen. I don't mind cold weather as obviously I can dress for it with all the clothes I have, but the wind is something different. Not only does it go right through you, but mentally it's pretty difficult to deal with when it is cold in the first place. I don't mind it in the summer, but in the winter it just makes me think that I should just turn around, go in to my basement, and sweat my ass off on the trainer. Well, sometimes I do just that when I'm having a weak moment, but this year I'm really trying to stick to my guns so that I can kick some butt next year. Having said that, Sunday pretty much sucked for riding even though it was the better of the two days only because I was so busy that I didn't have any time to ride as long as I wanted. I had to do some running around in the mid-morning and along with having no choice but to finish my kitchen if I actually wanted running water, I had to cut my riding short on Sunday and was only able to ride for 1.5 hours of my scheduled 2.75 for the day. Oh well, I got my kitchen done for the most part so I was really happy about that, and at least I have running water again. Today is normally a rest day on the bike but I will make up for some missed time yesterday by riding for an hour on the trainer and it is also a normally scheduled weight-work day so I'll be doing that as well. This week looks great as far as temps go, but it doesn't matter anyways as I'll be at work obviously every day. So, it's another week of trainer workouts and I'm really looking forward to Saturday now as the forecasted high is going to be 47 degrees!!! I'm scheduled for 3.5 hours so I am really looking forward to that ride, should be a good one. Sunday is supposed to be 34 degrees which is plenty warm enough to ride, and I have a lot of time now, so I'll have no problem getting in my 2.75 hours scheduled for that day. Well, until next time...........

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Dang, It's Cold!!

So this morning it was 5 degrees with a wind chill of -13. It sure is hard to get out of bed on days like today, it makes taking a sick day sound like a good idea so that I can stay under the covers. Unfortunately I did come to work though, no such luck on staying warm in bed, oh well. I did check the Weather Channel and it appears that this cold spell will be short-lived though and tomorrow it will be up to 29 and Saturday and Sunday will be in the mid-30s, probably windy on Saturday though, but I can fight through that. There is no way I'm spending 3.5 hours on the trainer even if it is a little windy. Soooo, last night was a pretty relaxed night of training, I did my weight work and am feeling really good with that, although my knee felt a little loose last night and today, but hopefully it's nothing. After I got home I had a good dinner and then jumped on the bike for a quick 1 hour recovery ride. It seemed like I was only on for 15 minutes, piece of cake. Tonight I will be doing a 1.75 hour ride on the trainer with 7x12 second Stomps thrown in, and then tomorrow is a rest day but I won't be doing my regular weight work because I have a vacation day so I won't be at work to utilize the facilities. Saturday is a 3.5 hour ride with 6 x 3min FastPedal exercises thrown in and then Sunday is 2.75 hours of just Foundation Miles. Hopefully the weather cooperates and I can get both rides in with no issues, and by that I mean without freezing any limbs or appendages. I'm sure it will be a struggle Saturday with the wind chill and if it's too bad I can always do a shorter route outside and then finish inside if I get too cold. I don't predict any problems though. I also have a boatload of things to do this weekend around the house so it is going to be interesting to see how I fit this all in but hopefully I'll manage without stressing myself out. I'm still working on the plumbing for my kitchen re-model and my dad will be coming over Saturday to help with some electrical work for the new garbage disposal. I've got to make a trip to Home Depot as well today or tomorrow to get more valves for the supply lines and also to return some extra stuff that I don't need. It'll be a super busy weekend, can't wait. Yeah right! Until next time..........

Monday, December 04, 2006

Is It Spring Yet?

Needless to say it was impossible to bike outside for me this weekend as we got anywhere from 10.5 to 13 inches of snow on Friday depending upon what web site you look at. Normally the snow wouldn't stop me from riding but the problem this weekend was that most streets were unsafe to ride on because of the packed, ruddy, ice that was not completely cleared up yet. If there was no traffic on the road then sure it's no problem, but I don't trust drivers when they have to drive on that stuff and manuever around it, I'd like to live to see 2007. So, having said that, I had to do my riding on the trainer this weekend and as I've said before it makes for a lot of movie watching and some mind-numbing hours. Saturday I had to cut my ride short because we got our new countertops and dishwasher and I had to go get those and do some house stuff to get those projects started. I was scheduled for 3.5 hours but only managed to get in about 2 hours 50 minutes just because we had to do alot of running around like I said and there just wasn't enough time in the day. I felt good and it actually went pretty fast as I nearly made it through 2 90 minute movies during the ride. I did have to get off for about 2 minutes to make a pit stop because I consumed at least 3 or 4 bottles because I sweat so dang much when I ride inside, even with 2 fans. My knees felt pretty good after I fiddled with my seat height and cleats per my post on Friday, I had a little pain that went away after about 20 minutes and it did feel a little awkward but after a week or two my body will get used to it. Sunday I was scheduled for 2.75 hours and I completed the entire ride and my knees and overall position felt even better than Saturday, but mentally the last few minutes were pretty tough. I was closing in on a total of about 5.5 hours on the trainer over 2 days and although it doesn't sound like too much, it's still difficult to ride inside after having ridden outside the last few weeks. I obviously have to get used to it though because it's only December 4th and there are about 16-18 weeks left of this weather to deal with, but I know it will get easier as winter rolls along. This week will be 3 rides indoors on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday and then as of right now it appears that Saturday and Sunday will be outdoor rides. Saturday is supposed to be 35 and sunny and Sunday is supposed to be 34 and sunny. Hopefully the crews get out and get that ice cleared off the roads. I have a rest day on the bike today but it is a weight-workout day so I'll be doing that right after work today.
I also wanted to give an update on some team news.....we got our final look at the team kit that we will be going with next year and I have to say that it looks great! It's a nice combo of a muted gold (not shiny), red, and black. Our sponsor logos are well placed on the jersey and shorts and the overall design flows quite nicely. I have a pic of the design but I won't post it now, sorry, as I'm not sure if I'm allowed to do that yet. I'll definitely take some pics when I get the whole kit in a couple of months and post them at that time. If you want to get an idea of the gold color and the logo, visit our sponsor's web site (Wheaton) under my Links section. In addition to getting our team kit I got some info on some other riders that are joining our team and I'm definitely happy to know that we are getting some guys that are not only quality racers but also nice, respectable guys that I know I'll have no problem meshing with on and off the road. I'm definitely looking forward to a great season with the team in '07. Until next time.......

Friday, December 01, 2006

Uncomfortable....Not Any More!

I've been having problems lately getting comfortable on the bike, if you've read previous posts then you know that it's been driving me crazy. I've been experiencing left leg drop, right hip tilting forward and some left knee pain. I tried switching back to my old Sidis last night but the screws that I had weren't long enough to accommodate the cleats and some pedal wedges so I decided to make do with my Adidas. I finally figured that the best way to figure out what is causing my issue was to set up a video camera and tape myself from the back, front, and side to see what is happening when I pedal under load and when I spin easy. Maybe I was doing something differently or favoring a stronger leg or something when I used big gears, so I finally set that up last night. I watched the video and couldn't believe what I saw, and more importantly I couldn't believe I didn't really notice what was happening previous to seeing myself do it. Basically in my present seat position I was dropping my right heel big time on the downstroke and pedaling toes down with the left foot. It was so obvious that my right leg was longer than my left that I don't know how I haven't noticed that prior to yesterday. My seat height was basically set up in the middle of accommodating both legs..... too short for my right leg so I had to drop my heel to get the correct knee angle, and too tall for my left leg so I had to pedal toes down and drop my hip to reach the bottom of the pedal stroke. The hip drop on the left caused me to bring my right hip forward, also causing me to point my right foot in towards the bike, and my left foot away from the bike. My wife watched it with me and she was also thinking I was an idiot because she noticed it immediately as well and wondered how I didn't figure this out before. Soooo, after doing some measuring I had to go with 4 pedal wedges under the left cleat to lengthen it enough to measure up with the right leg. Once I had it set up so that each leg was even I raised the seat to alleviate the heel drop and sure enough, my left hip didn't drop, my right hip didn't go forward, me feet were straight ahead and I felt really comfortable for the first time in a long while. It was a good feeling to finally, well hopefully, figure out what was going on so that I can go in to next year feeling like I'm not unbalanced on the bike.
Anyways, last night I did ride for 1.75 hours on the trainer and did 7x12sec Stomps as well. Tonight is a rest day on the bike and because of our major snowstorm I'll be skipping the weight work so that I can get home and shovel. Tomorrow is going to be an iffy day as there still might be too much snow to ride safely but I'll do my best to get out on the cyclocross bike and I'll ride for as long as I can or until I deem it too unsafe to hit the road. I might have to do all or part of tomorrow's scheduled 3.5 hours of riding on the trainer, fun, fun. If I can even get away with doing half on the road and half on the trainer I'd be happy. Sunday is probably 2.5 hours on the trainer as it appears that it will be snowing again but we'll see if the forecasters are correct. Here is a pic of the wonderful snowfall (yeah, right!). Until next time..........

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Java, Java, Java!!!

Sometimes I drink a little toomuchcoffee and it becomesaproblem and I can't controlmyselfbecauseI get all jitteryand hyperand then I can't sitdownandI haveto walk around but I thinkit's good formy cyclingbecause it helpsraise my metabolismand that has gotto be good right? well this morningI was feelingreally tired and had 4shots of espresso andsome coffeehere at workand holy cow am I freakingout, it's like I have a jet engine up my butt which isreally weird but it seems tobe true so thats what I'm saying. i'm glad my chair has wheels onit because then I can roll around and that's prettyfun and withthe jet engineIcan go reallyfast. mustnot comedown......
training has been reallygoodlately and i'm doingquite well instickingto my programthanks to the weather but unfortunately i've had oneday that went bad. saturday i woke up with the worst headache I've had in whileand I can't explainwhy I had it butit hurt like helland I was boundtothe bed until the afternoon. I thinkit was from lack of coffeebut I'm not sure, youknow, caffeine headache and all. anyways, I tried to get on thebikebut couldn't do it due to my headache so i had towrite off that dayof training to illness. sunday I made upfor it by riding just over 3hours even though I wasonly scheduled for 1.75hours. it was agreat ride and it felt goodtobe out that long, that makes 4 or 5 weekends ina row that I've done 3 or more hours at least once over the weekend. last night i didweight work and increasedmy weight and decreased my reps andI can definitelyfeel that i'm getting stronger everyweek. tonight is 1.75hours on thetrainer with some Stomps thrown in and tomorrow is weights and onehour onthe bike. the weather is taking a turn for the worse, rabble,rabble, so that sucks but i'mhoping that i can still get in my long weekend of training. i always havethe crossbike and can still do some crossand trailriding and of course there is alwaysthe trainer. i'm looking forward to getting out no matter what, gotta lose some weight and get down to at least 181 by mid-december, i'mat 186 right nowYIKES! JELLO,JELLY,PUDDING,LARD! ok then, so I'm workingonthat and hope to be down to 173 by Aprilif I can. i don't knowif i can get much lower thanthat without sacrificingsome power. ok bye! gotta go have some more javato burn calories, cause I heard it raises my metabolism, so that's cool. until nexttime..................

Friday, November 24, 2006

2lbs. Heavier

I made it through Thanksgiving dinner without eating too much and according to my scale this morning I gained 2lbs yesterday. Not bad. On a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being "Wow, elephants don't eat that much!!", I think I was at about a 6 yesterday. I did manage to get in a 1.5 hour ride on the trainer afterwards so I'm sure I burned off at least a 1/3 of the calories I consumed, well maybe. I feel good this morning and I'm sure part of it is the rest I got last night after sleeping soundly while I dreamt of giant turkeys and bowls of stuffing and mashed potatoes. Anyways, the last few days of my regeneration week have been going well and I feel great and I'm ready to jump in to my next training week. Monday, I did weights and it was a rest day on the bike, Tuesday I rode for 1.25 hours on the trainer at a leisurely pace. Wednesday I did weights again and rode for 1 hour on the trainer at Foundation Mile pace which is pretty easy. Yesterday like I said was 1.5 hours on the trainer with some Stomps thrown in to help build power. Tonight I will be doing weight work and it will be a rest day on the bike. It is my last day of weight work in the Transition Phase and I will be starting the High Volume Phase on Monday which means I'll be increasing my weight and will decrease my reps to about 10-12 with the same number of sets (4). Saturday is going to be 2.25 hours with 40 mins of Race Simulation and then Sunday is a 1.75 hour ride with some FastPedals thrown in to help build leg speed. I also have to have a second Turkey dinner on Sunday as well, as my wife's mother is having us over for a belated Thanksgiving dinner, I'll do my best not to eat too much. Well, I'll update again on Sunday after what I hope will be a nice weekend of riding outside again, until next time............

Monday, November 20, 2006

Ready For The Rest Week

I finished my cross bike and took a ride on it this weekend and it's pretty fun to ride through some grass and mud. If you've been following my posts you'll know that technically it's not a cross bike but really an old Pinarello road bike with cross tires. That is good enough for me to go out trolling in the mud and I took it out this weekend in the Root River Parkway and went through some fields and on some trails for a little fun. After I got home I took it through the yard and jumped some ditches and ran with it for a while over some brush piles. My wife snapped a picture of me running across the yard because she thought I was reality I'm just like every other bike geek. Anyways, I did 2.5 hours on Sunday for 6 hours total over the weekend and 10 hours for the week. I feel great and this week I will be ready to do my recovery week, which really isn't needed physically but mentally it's nice to take a little break on the bike. Basically my rest week means like 8.50 hours on the bike instead of 10. I'm feeling great overall and I'm just reeeeeeally looking forward to next year already. I think that if I train the way I want too and stick to my program of gradually working up to 18-20 hours per week that I will be able to do very well in the Cat. 4s to start and then the 1/2/3s after that. I feel stronger each week and I think that I can be back to where I was previously by 2008. Most of the articles I've read said that by the 2nd year most former elite racers can be back to top form, but I don't think they are accounting for the fact that most former elite racers now have lives and families to deal with. It's easy to get back to top form after 2 years when you can ride 20-25 hours per week but that's not feasible with a family and full time job. I think I can be really good next year and by 2008 I can be competitive in the Pro/1/2 category and by that I mean I can win races. I've done it before, I know I can do it again. Anyways, tomorrow I only have to do 1.25 hours (it is a recovery week after all) and then Wednesday I will do an hour and also will do weights. So, it's an easy week and I'm looking forward to the mental break, especially riding the trainer all week. Well, until next time.........

Is that Sven Nys....noooooo, it's just me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Tired And Ready For Rest

Today I did my longest ride since my attempted 24-hour ride (which was only 10 hours), and completed a 3.5 hour ride from New Berlin to Waukesha to Mukwonago back to Waukesha and then back to New Berlin. It was a pretty hilly ride with about 2,700 ft. of climbing along the way but that was before I added about 6 more miles at the end because I was a little short of my goal and was at about 3hrs 15 min. I completed my entire ride and now have to do 2.5 hrs tomorrow but the weather isn't looking too good in the morning so I'll probably sleep in a little bit and then squeeze in the ride during the afternoon. I'm pretty wiped out now and can't wait to get to bed, which I'll be doing in about 5 minutes, so that I can get about 9 hours of sleep. I didn't do too much today, rode right away at 8:00 this morning, toiled around on the tractor in the yard and then did some house work. Oh yeah, I baked a loaf of banana bread as well, and it turned out great, it's almost gone already. I'm feeling good overall, surprisingly I haven't gotten sick from riding outside in the cold the last few weekends and the weather doesn't look too bad for next weekend as of now either. I'm a little less worried about the weather next weekend than I am about all the crazy X-mas shoppers that will be clogging the roads, I'll have to keep my eyes peeled for the weary shoppers and will probably have to dodge a few. Well, not much too say, I'm tired, so it's time to hit the sack. Tomorrow will be a short ride compared to today and then next week is a regeneration week so I'll be cutting back on the bike and getting some much needed rest after putting in some decent time on the road in the last 3 weeks. Until next time.............

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Biomechanic Mess!

I think biomechanically I am a mess. I can't seem to get a comfortable position as of late on the bike. Either one leg is shorter than the other, I'm dropping a hip, I have supponation or pronation, I'm pigeon-toed, or something else is just plain messed up because I'm always fiddling with my cleats and pedal wedges. Last week I took out the pedal wedges that I've had in all year to see if they were the cause of some recent knee pain. Well, I have to say that after a week I have no more knee pain but it seems that I'm always trying to shift my weight on the seat to lean to the right. I feel like I'm dropping my left hip so I keep shifting to the right and then because of my left hip drop my right foot is pointing inward and I have to adjust my cleat to allow for my foot to point in. I just don't get it because I've never had these problems previously. It seems that I can't get square on the seat. I tried to put the wedge back on one shoe to see if my left leg is shorter and maybe that is why I'm dropping that hip. I noticed my seat was pointing a bit to the left and I centered that a little better and that may have helped but I can't tell until I ride more. If this keeps up much longer I'm going to drive myself crazy adjusting my shoes all the time.
Anyways, the last few days I've completed my rides as scheduled and have done 2 days of weight work as well. Monday was a rest day on the bike and I did do my 4 sets of weights. Yesterday was 1.5 hours on the bike and I did that with 5 reps of PowerStarts which help build explosive power. Today I just did my 45 minute Recovery Ride and also did my 4 sets of weights. I feel really strong aside from the freakin' hip, knee, foot issue. As I approach the December 1st date of one year from when I started training last year, I am just in so much better shape that I'd have to say I'm starting at a fitness level that I would've had in about May of this year. That puts me about 6 months ahead of last year going in to my one year anniversary of being back on the bike in terms of fitness. I didn't feel good until about August of this year and hopefully that is what I will be feeling in April of next year. I'm anxiously counting off the days until next Spring, only like 4 and a half months to go! God, I hope it goes quick. Well, tomorrow I will be doing 1hr 45 mins on the trainer and then Friday is a rest day and I'll have some long rides again this weekend. I'll update on Friday night with my schedule for the weekend and hopefully the weather holds out so that I can get in some good riding outside. Until next time.........

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Pretty Wiped Out

This weekend was not the most conducive weather for riding but definitely good enough to get outside and complete my rides that I had planned. Yesterday was pretty chilly but warmed up enough, to all of about 38 degrees, to get in my 3.25 hour ride which actually ended up about 3hrs 10mins so I was 5 minutes short, oh well right? I did 50 minutes of Race Simulation, basically in the form of Power Intervals but no sprints or anything with a big gear, I took it easy on the muscles and worked the lungs a little more. I won't do too much in the way of Race Simulation or Intervals throughout the winter, most likely only once a week or once every two weeks probably. Today was just a Foundation Mile ride of 2hrs 30 mins which I completed almost exactly to the minute without really planning it that way. It was a nice ride but it had a couple of good size hills along the way and I can tell I have a long way to go to be in hill climbing shape again. I purposely kept it in really easy gears but I could still feel the burn although I'm not really worried about that right now. I'm looking forward to Spring to do some really good hill workouts to improve that area of my riding. Right now I'm just concentrating on getting in the miles and building my aerobic base and some power for the workouts to come in late Winter and early Spring. Tomorrow is a rest day on the bike but I will be doing some weight work with about 4 sets of leg presses, leg curls and leg lifts. This is my last week of Transition lifting and then I go in to the High Volume Phase next week with slightly higher weight and less reps. I'm pretty wiped out tonight from riding as I think riding in the cold definitely takes more out of me and the 5hrs 40mins in the 35-40 degree weather made me pretty tired right now. I'm probably going to get to bed an hour earlier than normal tonight but not before I have a beer I think, after all that riding I deserve one! Time to eat dinner, have a beer and then hit the recliner. Until next time..........

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Beautiful Weather And I'm Stuck Inside

Well, today was a beautiful day and I didn't get to enjoy any of it as of course I'm stuck sitting in a cubicle all day. It is supposed to rain Friday, Saturday and possibly Sunday and turn cool with highs only in the upper 30s to low 40s. I have rides of 3.25 and 2.5 planned for Saturday and Sunday and right now it's not looking good for riding outside but I'm hoping there is a little block out of each day where it isn't raining and I can get out. I know it's November and it's supposed to be crappy outside but it's always nice to hope that it will stay warmer longer than it should. Either way I'll be getting my riding done, unfortunately it may just be done inside which will be pretty boring for a 3 hour ride. Let's just say it's going to have to be pouring or snowing heavily for me to get stuck inside.
My training has been going well but I really haven't done much since my last post on Sunday. Monday was a rest day on the bike but I did do my weight work and felt really good doing that, no knee pain or any other issues. Yesterday was a ride on the trainer for 1.25 hours with 5x15sec Stomps. I felt great again last night with no knee pain so I think I shook that issue that aggravated me for a couple of weeks. Tonight I'll be doing weight work shortly and then doing just 45 minutes on the bike to keep the legs loose. Tomorrow will be 1.75 hours with some FastPedals thrown in I think. Friday I'm looking forward to going out to dinner with some friends, I'll just need to make sure I don't eat too much. Well, not much to say for now, I'll update again after Saturday's ride to let you know how that went. Until next time.........

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Good Riding This Weekend

I'll start off with some team news before I write about my rides this weekend as we had our official Team Wisconsin/Team Wheaton Franciscan Health Care banquet on Saturday evening. First of all, it was a great evening of food, beer and lots of discussion on where the team is headed in term of budget, number of racers, sponsorship....all that good stuff. We also had a nice long 2 hour discussion (at least is seemed that long) on what our racing outfit would look like. As of right now our outfit is going to have a jersey the color of the gold Vuelta leader's jersey and then of course our sponsors' logos will be on the jersey with the Wheaton logo right in the middle. It appears that we are also going to go with black shorts this year which I don't really care for, but the majority ruled on that choice. So it will be black shorts with a white and gold panel with the Wheaton logo and name down the side. Once I get a copy of the design I'll post something on this site. Right now it appears the team will have somewhere in the range of 35-40 riders with most of them being road riders and some mountain bike riders are on the team as well. Going in to the meeting it appeared there would be about 22-25 riders but there has been a decision, at least tentatively, to merge with another team and take on 10-12 of their riders. It seems certain that the merge will happen and once it does I'll probably post some comments on that as well. Just a quick plug for some of the sponsors that were announced as well...Ben's Cyclery will be our new bike shop sponsor, Vittoria tires is tentatively set as our tire sponsor, Clif is also returning as our food/gel/tasty treat sponsor, and Safway. All in all, it was a good meeting and I'm sure there will be plenty more to talk about in the coming months.
As far as riding goes....Friday evening I did my weight work, basically my normal 4 set Transition workout and it was a rest day on the bike. Saturday I was up and out on the bike at 8:30a.m. and did a 3 hour ride out to Waukesha and the surrounding areas and despite the wind and colder temperatures it was a thoroughly enjoyable ride. Today I did 2 hours 20 minutes, 10 minutes short of my scheduled ride..oh well. The weather was gorgeous compared to the last few weeks and I would have loved to have gone for 3 or 4 hours but I'm sticking to my training plan for one, and secondly today was my wife's grandpa's birthday and we had to go to his party at noon and we didn't leave there until 4:00. I actually took the opportunity to ride down to the party in Waterford and that was a good way to get in my ride and still make it to the party. I really can't complain about this weekend as I had scheduled 5.5 hours outside for Saturday and Sunday and I did almost that amount and obviously could've added the extra 10 minutes but it wasn't worth it. Tomorrow is just a rest day on the bike but I will be doing weights.
Here are some pictures of my new Cannondale, still being built, and my Pinarello cross bike, still being built as well.

Easton Carbon stem and handlebars Campagnolo Eurus wheelset Old school Pinarello - check out the Scott drop-in bars! Ready for mud and snow!

Thursday, November 02, 2006


Oh yeah, I wrote about other stuff yesterday but didn't tell you what I was actually doing on the bike. Please read yesterday's post but in addition to that here is what I'm doing on the bike....

Yesterday - did a 1.25 hour ride because I had to cut Tuesday's ride a tad short because of my knee pain. I was scheduled for just a 30 minute spin but added the extra 45 minutes to make up some time.

Today - a 1.75 hour ride with 6 x 12 second Stomps, although I may nix the Stomps if my knee is too sore. Either way it's going to be 1.75 hours but maybe just spinning easy.

Tomorrow - a rest day on the bike but I will be doing weights.

Saturday - 3 hour ride with 5 x 3 min Fast Pedal exercises. The weather is supposed to suck but as long as it's not raining in the morning I'll do my ride, that's why I have all that cold weather gear. If it's raining, then I'll be doing 2 hours 25 minutes inside as that equates to about 3 hours outside. I'll have to find a long movie.

Sunday - 2.5 hour ride at Foundation Mile pace. Right now there is no rain in the forecast so it will be an outside ride.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

I Hate The Offseason

Why is it that during the offseason, when you are actually doing less work on the bike, that weird things like knee pain, and back pain seem to pop up? I know a couple of people that are suffering some sort of knee pain since they tapered in September and October. I have been bugged by a left knee pain that seems to have cropped up for no particular reason. The only thing I can think of is that my pedaling dynamics are different on the trainer than they are when I ride on the road. On the road I probably sit a little off keel on the seat and the bike adjusts under me (that's probably why I wear out the left side of my tires...hmmm). On the trainer the bike is locked in to place and doesn't adjust under me so I'm guessing that in some way my pedaling technique or motion is being affected leaving me with the knee pain. Last year I obviously didn't do any road riding before I started on the trainer in December so I didn't have that period of adjustment and therefore had no knee pain. I've been riding the trainer for the most part since the beginning of October and that's about when the pain started, hopefully it goes away soon after my body adjusts. I might switch to the rollers more often for days when I don't have to do specific workouts so that my pedaling motion will be more like the road. I have to do specific workouts on the trainer though because I can't get much resistance on the rollers.

I had hoped to have some pictures up today of my Pinarello build but I had to bring in the rear wheel to Wheel & Sprocket to get trued up so it isn't quite together right now. I still have to get a seatpost as well and I'm just going to get a cheap no-name seatpost when I go to pick up my wheel as this is just my winter "cross" bike. I will still ride my Specialized throughout the winter as much as I can but if there is any snow on the road or I want to test out some trails I will definitely be testing out the knobbies on the Pinarello. Once the winter comes to an end I will finish the build on my new CAAD8 frame by stealing a few parts from the Specialized and I will start riding the CAAD8 in the early Spring. The CAAD8 will still be all Campy Record Carbon but I've upgraded a few components over the Specialized so this bike will be lighter, more responsive and a little less harsh in ride quality. In addition to the Record components I'm going with an Easton carbon stem, Easton carbon flat-top ergo handlebars, Easton carbon seatpost and to top it all off I've got the new, lighter Campy Eurus wheels. The Eurus' are definitely an upgrade over my Bontrager Race Lites, saving about 200 grams or more and they are way more stiff so they'll be more responsive. I got them in black to offset the shiny silver of the frame, they look great and fast too. I'll post some pictures of the CAAD8 along with the Pinarello tomorrow or Saturday. Until next time..........

Monday, October 30, 2006

Root River Ride

The last few days have been pretty uneventful as far as training goes but I've been super busy at work and at home. I had to work at 6:00a.m. on Friday, today and also tomorrow so that is really cutting in to my sleep time and I'm only getting about 5.5 - 6 hours of sleep which isn't enough for me. Friday night I didn't do any riding or lifting as we went out to dinner with friends and we were out pretty late. It was a normal scheduled rest day anyways so I really didn't miss anything. I probably didn't help myself though either with those 5 beers and the fish fry. Saturday we had to be at a wedding in Wausau by 1:30 so I was up early and we were on the road by 10:00 and didn't return until 1:00a.m. Sunday morning. I got to set the clock back though to midnight so I did get an extra hour of sleep which I really needed. Sunday morning I was up really early and did a ride through the Root River Parkway and brought the camera with to take some pics of the nice fall colors....what's left anyways. Here are some shots from Sunday....

Today I did some weight work, 4 sets of 15 reps on the leg press, leg extensions, and leg curls. I'll do that 3 days a week for 4 weeks and then I'll move on to a heavier weight and less reps for another 4 weeks and then finally I'll go to heavy weights and low reps to build strength. Tomorrow the plan is to do a 1.25 hour ride and I believe I have to do 5 sets of 3 minute Fast Pedal exercises. MI3 just came out on DVD so I'll have to go rent that and watch Mr Katie Holmes blow stuff up. Should be a good time. Adios, until next time..................

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Riding The Knobbies, Kind Of........

This time of year is pretty boring as far as life goes, so it is even more boring to write about and for anyone who has to read this. There are no bike races here or abroad, unless you like reading about the results of the latest cyclocross or 6-day race. Although I have to mention that I have been getting hooked on checking cyclocross results just to see if Ryan Trebon won again. That guy is like 6'4" tall and just full of raw power. It's been an interesting battle between him and Tim Johnson this year but Tim isn't doing so good right now. That should change once the weather gets worse as Tim is more of a technical rider and should be able to handle Ryan in the snow and on the more technical courses. I'm looking forward to the National Championships, should be interesting to see who pulls that off. I'm also excited to finish my own little cyclocross setup with my old Pinarello that I mentioned the other day. It really isn't a cyclocross setup but more or less a road bike with Hutchinson Cross Pro tires, which I have to say look pretty cool on the bike. I put them on last night and they are 700x30 with knobbies to give that motocross look and surprisingly I have plenty of clearance with my standard road fork and chainstays. I got a new chain the other day for the 8-speed setup and am waiting for my new 8-speed cassette to arrive any day now. Once I get those on I'm just waiting for a little snow so that I can go fly around the yard, all I need now is some barriers so that I can do some dismounting and running. Now I can ride year round and on limestone trails as I don't have a mountain bike and was too nervous to take my skinny 700x23s on limestone before. I did buy some Conti hybrid 700x32s last year but they didn't work so well on some trails that I went on in West Bend. Now with the knobbies I am good to go. I can't wait to do my first tail slide.
Other than that, I've been riding as scheduled but missed my weight day yesterday due to some scheduling conflicts with family activities. I will make that up by lifting tonight in addition to my 1.5 hour ride. Tonight, as mentioned, is a 1.5 hour ride on the trainer and I will be throwing in 5x15 second Stomps to help build power in the saddle. Basically you start at 15-20 mph and then just mash a huge gear (53x12) for 15 seconds, recover 5 minutes, and then repeat. Hopefully there is something good on TV tonight otherwise I'll have to go get another movie at BlockBuster to watch during the ride. Tomorrow is supposed to be another weight day but I'll skip that and just do some stretching instead. I'd rather lift on a ride day because I actually feel better on the bike after lifting so that will help with tonight's ride. My wife and I are also supposed to go out tomorrow night for dinner with some friends so I have to be home right away after work and won't really have time to lift. Saturday we are heading to Wausau at 10:00a.m for my cousin's wedding and I'm not sure if I'll squeeze in a ride before then, although I will try to get up and get at least a 2 hour ride in before we leave. If I have too many beers Friday night then that could be troublesome. Sunday's weather is looking decent so I should get in my 2 hour ride with no issues. Well, that's it for now, until next time..................

Monday, October 23, 2006

I Love Rain and Wind!

Yeah right, I hate rain and wind, but it seems there is a lot of both lately and according to the forecast I have some more of the same to look forward to in the next 10 days. My work schedule prevents me from getting home and riding outside as it's dark about 20 minutes after I get home so I've been stuck riding the trainer and rollers during the week. I though that this weekend would be good enough for me to get in a ride outside but when I woke up this past Saturday at 6:30 a.m. to go ride I guess I didn't realize that it's still dark out at that time. I had some coffee and a bagel and waited until about 7:45 to make sure that it was light out and then I threw on all my cold weather clothes and headed out for what was supposed to be a 3 hour ride. I got about 10 minutes down the road and it started to rain, being the wuss that I am I decided to turn around because there was no way I was going to ride in upper 30 degree temps and rain for the next 3 hours. I'm a bit of a wuss now as in my old riding days I used to ride for 3 or 4 hours in a constant downpour and didn't mind a bit. Now if it even looks like rain I stay inside and ride the trainer, it's part of getting older I guess. I'm not getting paid to ride and it's supposed to be fun, so I can pick and choose my riding days now, not like before when I had to ride no matter what the conditions. Anyways, I got back and rode for 2 hours on the trainer with about 60 minutes of Race Simulation thrown in to break up the monotony. I was supposed to ride for 2 hours yesterday as well but my mom had already bought tickets for the whole family to Fright Fest at Six Flags so we headed down there at 9:00a.m. and didn't get back until 7:30p.m.. I was so tired and nauseous from flying sideways, upside down, and well, every other direction on the roller coasters that I didn't get my 2 hours in before bed. I had scheduled today as a weight lifting day and as a rest day on the bike so now it will be weights and then 2 hours on the rollers instead. Tomorrow I'll do my normal 1.5 hour ride on the trainer with a few Stomps thrown in as well.
Here is a random thought....I was reading an article today from Ron Kiefel on and for those of you who don't know who he is, he is a former 7-11 racer from the 80s and also rode for a host of other teams in the early 90s as well. Well anyways, it wasn't the article that caught my eye but the pictures of the bikes that made me think about the good old days of steel frames and 32-spoke wheels. I have a Pinarello Treviso Columbus SL frame with Campy Omega 32 spoke rims (maybe 36?) and I love riding that bike because it is so comfortable. It is equipped with Campy Chorus 8-speed (15 years old) but right now it's having a little trouble shifting due to some worn out cogs on the cassette. I just ordered a new (old stock) cassette for it and a new chain so that I can ride it over winter so I don't mess up my good bike. I also ordered some 700x30 Hutchinson Cyclocross tires for it as well so that I get some good traction in the snow if needed. Soooo, here's my thought, there should be at least 2 or 3 road races or crits during the year that are "vintage" races in which everyone brings their crappiest pre-1990 bike if they have one and they can't be fixed up, you have to ride them as is, no greasing them up or anything, and we go race them for like 20 miles. Mine only shifts in to two gears right now, 39x12 or 53x12 so that is how I would have to leave it. I want to hear all the squeaks and crunches as we all ride them. Dry chains, tire rot, frozen rusted cables, it's all good. The best part is, if the steel stem and seatpost are rusted and now bonded onto the frame, you can't adjust them, all the better for everyone else. I know some of you may not have a "nice" crappy bike like my Pinarello so Sears Free Spirits and the like are more than welcome. So get out your old Motobecane, Eddy Merckx, Fuji, Bianchi, Masi, Raleigh, or Pinarello and let's go ride some time. No lubrication or non-steel parts allowed, cause that's how I roll. Until next time.........

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Team Dynamics

Well, I got back from Florida and rode on Sunday, Monday, and yesterday evening to make up for my lost time when I was down enjoying the warm weather in Tampa. I actually didn't get to enjoy the weather that much as we had to work from about 8 until 6-6:30 every day including Saturday. I gained lots of weight as well, eating all that great seafood and desserts. I certainly can't turn down free dinners, so I made the most of them, eating all that I could. Anyways, my rides have been fairly short, 1-2 hours, and are basically maintenance rides to keep up the fitness through October. I still throw in the Fast Pedal sets, and some Race Simulation on Saturdays just to keep it interesting but for the most part it is easy pedaling. I am also playing with my foot/cleat position to alleviate some leg length discrepancy and supponation. I have some Lemond Pedal Wedges that I use between the cleat and shoe to either add height or straighten out my leg motion, and so far it is working well. I also think I have a hip alignment issue in that my back muscles are pulling my right hip forward a bit and I have read some things on that and can probably alleviate that by tilting my seat a bit to the right but I should probably go to a chiropractor as well to straighten myself out. I didn't have these issues in the past but I'm sure it's just part of getting older and sitting in a chair for about 7 hours a day. Soooo, that aside, the plan for today is to do some weight work, 3 sets of 12-15 reps, all leg work as I get plenty of arm work doing stuff around the house and I don't really want arm muscle anyways. I won't ride today but will be riding tomorrow, Saturday and Sunday. Tomorrow I believe is a 1.75 hour ride with some Fast Pedal sets and then Saturday is 2.75 or 3 hours with 45 minutes of Race Simulation and Sunday is 2.25 or 2.5 hours, can't remember exactly as I don't have my program here at work. I'm feeling great, I'm plenty motivated and lovin' riding right now.

In other news, there are some changes on my current team, Team Wisconsin, that have impacted some decisions I have to make for next year. I don't really want to say too much about it now but basically some of the team has split to form their own team which I don't think will impact the core group too much as it appears most of them are mountain bikers. If most of the core group stays which it appears they will, then the decision is a no-brainer, I'll definitely stay with the team. If some of them leave that helped to get me on the team in the first place, then I'll have some decisions to make. I really like the direction we are heading for 2007 with the new sponsor Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare so if all stays kosher, it should be a good year. I only did two races with the team as I signed up late in the year but the team seems really well organized and has some riders with great potential. I know for one that I will be training lights-out this off-season in order to be competitive in the Master's 1/2/3 category by May or June. I'll be waiting to see how things play out in the next couple of weeks and then we have our team banquet on November 4th so we'll get to learn a little bit more about what's planned for '07. The next few weeks will be pretty interesting on the bike and off the bike...........Until next time.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Off To Florida....for work :(

It was a busy weekend and I got in a couple of rides and also did about 15 hours worth of house work, mostly on Sunday, which of course was a beautiful day. Saturday I had to do some work on the driveway, coach my son's soccer game, which we won 6-5 after being down 5-2, and then I finally rode about 2.5 hours. It was a sunny day, temps were probably upper 60s and the wind wasn't too bad. It was an EM day with about 30 minutes of Race Simulation which basically consisted of a couple of 2 minute intervals simulating a breakaway, about 10 telephone pole sprints and about 3 or 4 hill sprints, well, almost sprints as one of the hills I do is about 3 minutes long. I felt pretty good overall as being the "offseason" I didn't really try to push it too much and I kept the cadence high and tried not to wear out the legs too much, mainly working the lungs. Sunday was another sunny day, definitely a bit windier, but that didn't take any of the fun out of what may be the last nice day of the month. I rode for about 2 hours, and just kept it at an easy Foundation Mile pace, no big hills and no sprints or anything like that. It was a very enjoyable ride and I just checked the 10-day forecast and it looks like it may have been the last nice weather ride as the temps are going to dip and they are even calling for snow showers on Thursday with lows of 28 degrees. Fortunately for me I will be in Florida, leaving here at 7:00a.m. and arriving in Tampa around 11:30 or so. It is going to be in the upper 80s and low 90s the whole time I'm there until I leave on Sunday. The unfortunate part is that I'm going on business and won't have my bike nor will I have a chance to work out as the suite complex that we are staying at doesn't have a fitness center. My company is paying for a nice suite with kitchen, couch, big bathroom, king bed, etc., but the dang place has nowhere to work out, which is just crazy to me in a place like Florida where everybody has to be skinny to lay on the beach. Oh well, can't do much about it, but I'm pretty disappointed that I will miss 3 riding days and 2 weight days. Maybe I can put the coffee table or something over my shoulders and do squats for a weight workout, and even though I hate to run I can bring my running shoes and jog around the parking lot. The only thing they do have is a basketball court and in that heat 30 minutes of hoops is a pretty good workout, so that could be good cross-training. I'll figure something out I the meantime, I hope you all enjoy the Wisconsin weather, I can't wait to come back to it on Sunday...yeah right. Until next time.........

Friday, October 06, 2006

Rolling Right Along

Well, I am rolling right along this week, on the bike, and well, on my fatty stomach as well. I've biked 3 times this week so I'm sticking to my schedule but I've also eaten way too much this week. I think I've gained 5-7 lbs. but my scale is broke so I don't have the luxury of checking, oh darn hey? Training on the bike will be easy over the winter, but I think some natural hibernation instinct is kicking in and I'm starting to store fat for the winter, honestly!! I'll really have to try to cut back on the food, otherwise my training is doing me no good at all. One of my weaknesses this year was hills as I did lose about 27lbs after I started training, going from 210lbs to 183lbs, but that still was a little too heavy. I want to be at 173lbs to start next year, and if you add the increased power that I'll attain over the winter my power-to-weight ratio will be waaaaaaaayy better than this year. I was 183lbs and in all honesty, 5-6 months of training doesn't really build a lot of power, not enough to race any higher than Cat 4, that's for sure. With this year's base of 5,500+ miles and counting and all the weight training and riding that I'm starting now, I'll be at a much higher level next year, definitely capable of competing as a Cat. 3 or higher. By 2008 I fully expect to be back to where I was when I quit cycling in 1996, although I'll be 12 years older so that is a negative, but hey, there are lots of 30+ guys kicking butt out there. Cripes, Lance is my age and he could probably win another Tour or two if he wanted. I'm looking to win a WI Cup race, so that's comparable right, well o.k., a little bit less difficult I guess....but not by much. Anyways, it's getting late and I'm pretty tired already and have to get up at 7:00a.m. on a Saturday to work around the house, I have lots to do before I have to go coach my son's soccer game, and it's team picture day so I have to actually shower before going. After the game I'll be doing my scheduled ride of 2.5 hours, it looks like it will be a beautiful day for a ride, can't wait. Until next time..............

Monday, October 02, 2006

Riding For 2007

Well, it's been a pretty uneventful week, and I don't have a lot to say since my last post since I haven't really done much in the last week other than gain some weight. I am finally starting to feel better as I had been feeling pretty fatigued and just plain under the weather the last 3 weeks. I attribute a lot of it to the below normal weather conditions we've been having and I think I was a bit rejuvenated by yesterday's beautiful, sunny day. I actually got out and rode for about 2.5 hours which is more than I've ridden in the last 2 weeks combined. It felt great to be out in the sun again and the warmer temps but it doesn't appear that it will last long as it was already storming overnight and it looks like quite a bit of rain and some cooler temps later in the week. Next weekend looks o.k. though with temps in the mid to upper 60s as of right now, so I should get out for a couple of longer rides Saturday and Sunday.
As for my training for 2007, I've officially started it today and will spend the next 16 weeks in the Foundation Period basically building up a good aerobic base for the harder training that will follow. Today I will do some light weight work, basically just maintenance work, as unfortunately my first day of the program starts with a rest day on the bike. Tomorrow will be my first on-the-bike day and then Wednesday will be weights again. I will be doing light weights for 3 days and riding for 4 days for the month of October, then I will switch to riding 5 days in November and then 6 days starting in December for the remainder of the Foundation Period. My weight work will gradually increase throughout the period as well going to higher weights and less reps as I progress. I'm really looking forward to see how I progress for 2007 versus this year as I now have a good base whereas I had exactly 0 miles to build on last year. I'd really like to do well in the first few races of 2007 so that I can upgrade right away to help out the team, as the majority of our team will be in the Master's 1/2/3 category. We'll see how that goes I guess.

Well, I did celebrate the last day of my "off-season" yesterday by consuming 3 bratwurst loaded with onions, ketchup, mustard, and lots of kraut. I also had almost a whole bag of Doritos, 4 beers, 2 shots of whiskey and some other miscellaneous chips and dips. I figured I was going to start my healthy eating today so I had to splurge yesterday so I wouldn't binge during training. Other than gaining about 4lbs. and feeling a little hung over this morning, I think it was a good year-end feast. From now on it will be good wholesome food...and a little bit of beer as that has carbs in it right? Until next time...........

I do love the bratwurst...mmmmmm...

Monday, September 25, 2006

Not Much Going On

Well, there has been a whole lot of nothing going on around here lately. I've been feeling under the weather for the last two weeks and have ridden only 3 or 4 times since the last race. I've had an underlying cold/fever thing going on.... sore throat, aching muscles, fatigue and I can't seem to shake it. The lack of riding has made me a little crabby but I know that if I go out and ride a lot I won't allow my body to get over whatever is ailing it right now. In the meantime, I'm trying to rush and get all the last minute yardwork done before the weather turns bad, so I'm not really resting my body anyways, might as well be out riding. So anyway, I'm going to probably rest one more day and then try to hit the bike tomorrow, when hopefully I'll be feeling better.
Overall, I've been slowly charting out my training program from what is in my brain to something on paper (computer actually) that I can work off of starting on October 1st. I'm going to use October as my transition month and November, December, January and February will be my Foundation months. After that, depending how I am feeling I will plan out the remaining periods of the program. It's going to be a long fall and winter as I already wish that I could get back to racing and of course I'm dreading the indoor miles on the trainer/rollers. Well, not much to say now, this part of the year pretty much just sucks. Oh yeah, I'm building up my new CAAD8 frame with some pretty nifty parts....upgraded my alloy stem to an Easton carbon and also bought an Easton carbon seatpost, I upgraded my Chorus BB to a Record carbon BB, and will also be getting carbon handlebars. I've got my eye on a new wheelset as well but we'll see about that, can't spend all my money.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Relaxing A Bit

Well, it's been a while since my last post so I figured I better give a little update on what I've been doing. Truthfully, not that much. Since the update about the race last Sunday I've ridden only 3 times and have worked a bit on the house. I rode last Wednesday for a little bit on the trainer, rode for 40 miles on Saturday morning and rode for 30 miles with my wife on Sunday. It was a little busy around the house during the week and this weekend we had a wedding celebration to go to Saturday afternoon. This week I'm going to try to get back to my normal riding schedule and will ride today, tomorrow, Thursday, and Saturday. Now that racing is over I'm going back to 5 days a week instead of 6. I'll continue that until October and then I'll ride 3 or 4 days a week and start weight training at that time as well. I'll do lots of weight work in October and then in November I'll decrease the weights a bit and go back to 5 days a week on the bike. What I mean by decreasing the weight work is that my reps will go down but will be heavier weight, 6 reps versus 10-12. I'll do weight work probably through December and then I'll just do some maintenance lifting every now and then through the Spring as I switch my power work to on the bike exercises. I guess there isn't much going on right now, no races to report on or train for, just riding for fun for the time being. I did get my new Cannondale frame and also received my new Easton EC70 stem. I'm still waiting on my new Bontrager Race X Lite Aero rear wheel, my Record carbon bottom bracket, and my new carbon handlebars before I can build up the bike. I might just wait until November or December to build it up as I'd like to continue riding the Specialized through the Fall and beginning of winter as I'd like to keep the new frame as clean as possible. I have my Pinarello to ride through the winter outside and of course I'll ride the new bike on the rollers/trainer. Basically right now I'm on eBay all the time looking for good deals on parts for all 3 bikes. Well, that's it for now, until next time...........

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Crappy Day And Crappy Result

I just hate racing in cold, wet weather and today just happened to be one of those days. It was about 55 - 57 degrees in Madison and raining lightly for the 10:30 start of the Endeavour Criterium. We basically had 40 minutes plus 4 laps around the Research Park loop which is about .9 miles long with one small climb and a nice long flat before the turn in to the uphill finish. It was pretty much just a cold, wet windy day and the legs didn't want to respond no matter how hard I tried. I was soaked through every article of clothing, my feet were soaked and cold and I had tire spray constantly hitting me in the face. I felt good coming in to the race and I knew I had to support Tony in an effort to get the overall title for WI Cup points but I couldn't do anything today. I tried to take a little flyer to get the legs warmed up but as soon as I went I knew I had nothing, my legs were fried pretty much right away. My breathing felt good and I wasn't breathing too hard so I know that it had to be the cold that just was taking everything out of my muscles. I couldn't do anything to help Tony and he was really on today, basically staying at the front the whole race and looking super strong. Near the end there was a small split on the last lap and Tony took off but Ryan (overall Cup leader) was on his wheel and in the sprint Ryan ended up nipping Tony by maybe a tire width, it was really close. Either way Tony needed to finish two spots ahead of Ryan so the title was was Ryan's to keep and that pretty much closed out our racing season. I got 11th in the sprint, which really wasn't much of a sprint as everyone was scattered from the pressure put on during the last lap.
During the next couple of weeks I don't race mountain bike so I'll just do a couple of tour rides with my wife and keep doing some relaxed training rides through September. I'll cut back in October to about 2 to 3 days of riding per week and then I'll start to amp things up again in November. I guess now that the season is over I can look back and say I did decent for my first year back but I really wish I would've done better or got at least one win. For the year my results were as follows: 20th, 26th, 34th, 3rd, 18th, 8th, 11th, 21st, 24th, 25th, 8th and 11th. Not bad, but not exactly great either. I got 3 top-10 and 5 top-15 placings which was good enough for 11th overall in the WI Cup series, only 3 points away from 10th place. Well, that's about it for the racing year. I'll keep you all up to date on my training progress for next year as I start winding down and preparing for the 2007 season. Here are some pictures from the crappy race today:

Friday, September 08, 2006

Sore, But Ready To Go.....

I'm actually feeling pretty sore today and I can only imagine that it's from the Speed Intervals I did last night as I didn't do anything else really strenuous. I had to assist with my son's soccer team last night from 5:30 until 6:30 so by the time I got home it was too late to ride outside so I had to head down to the basement and ride the trainer. I had originally scheduled a 1.5 hour ride outside with sets of 7x30sec Speed Intervals so in trainer time that translates to 1.25 hours as you are constantly pedaling on the trainer vs. the road so you don't have to ride as long. Anyways, I turned the fan on high, put the towel around my neck and started sweating as I watched the Pittsburgh/Miami game for my warm up. Once I was warmed up I switched over to a stage of the Tour that I had DVR'd and started my Speed Intervals. I felt pretty good during the intervals but got pretty tired at the end of the last set and was struggling to maintain max speed. Melissa came downstairs at the end of my last rep and looked at all the sweat pouring off me, said "gross", and turned around and went right back upstairs. Thanks for the support honey! All in all, it was a good workout and my HR was right where I wanted it to be, and my HR recovery was very quick during my 30 second breaks so I know my body is ready to race. Tonight will just be a quick 1 hour ride at 65% max HR, in other words a Recovery Ride. Tomorrow morning, barring rain, I will only do 1.5 hours and do 3 x 2minute Power Intervals to open up the legs for Sunday. I have a wedding to go to at 1:00 followed by the reception at 5:00 so the rest of the day is pretty much shot. I'll be avoiding alcohol unfortunately and I'll be trying to find all the carbs in the buffet line to make sure I'm fully stocked.
In other news, I bought a new frame yesterday and should be getting it on Tuesday of next week. The Specialized S-Works I got last November was bought on eBay and I knew it was slightly used as it was a bike shop display/test bike but the thing is creaking and knocking like crazy right now. The noise is coming from the bottom bracket and I've completely gone through each bolt and tightened everything and also pulled out the bottom bracket, regreased it and put everything back together. I tightened all the brake bolts, derailleur bolts, seatpost, headset, handlebars, etc. and the noise still persists, especially when I stand up. When I put the bike on the trainer with the chainstays/seatstays tightened securely then it doesn't make noise. Basically I think either something happened when I had my crash in May or the frame is just completely flexed out. The fact that it doesn't make noise when the rear is stabilized in the trainer makes me think it's flexing. So anyway, I bought a new 2006 Cannondale CAAD8 frame and will just transfer all my Campy Record components over to that. I'll take the Specialized and make it a TT bike as I don't care if it creaks during time trialing. I won't ride it enough to annoy me so I'll keep it around for the time being. I know that the CannonDale is another aluminum frame and will also get flimsy in 2 or 3 years but I'll be ready for a new bike by then anyways! :) Well, back to work, until next time..........

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

4 Days And Counting

4 more days until the last race of the year for me and it can't come quick enough. My teammate Tony is 9 points out of the overall WI Cup lead and we need to get him the win and the current leader needs to finish 2 spots behind him. I'm pretty amped up to do some work for Tony and lead him out in the sprint. I think we'll have a good strategy worked out to shred most of the field and then we should have at least 4 of us right near the front to power around the last lap or two. I believe that our team is superior to Chiropractic Partners and we should be able to cover any of their attacks and get a good train going for the sprint. I have no doubt that I can cover any attacks and have the legs left for the leadout, this is going to be a great final race. I've been feeling a lot more powerful lately as I'm obviously progressing as I get miles in to my legs. In the beginning of the year the power just wasn't there, no miles means no leg strength and that equals jack squat when it comes to sustained power. Unfortunately the year is coming to an end and I'm just starting to find form now that I'm a lot stronger than I was 3 or 4 months ago. Oh well, the 5000+ miles that I did this year, so far, will be a good base for me for next year.
Well, for this week I've done a bit of riding but not too much. If you read my previous posts you'll know that I didn't ride on Saturday because I was up at Devil's Lake with the family, but we did do a lot of hiking that day. Sunday I rode for 2.5 hours with some good hills and pushed it fairly hard but I didn't do any intervals or get my HR up near max. Monday I was pretty busy with Labor Day and it was a normally scheduled rest day on the bike so I didn't ride. Last night I did a 1.5 hour ride (cut short due to sunset) with 3 sets of 8min/3min OverUnder Intervals. As I've explained in previous posts it's 8 minutes at 89% then immediately in to 3 minutes at 92% then back down to 89%, etc. for 3 sets. It's basically 32 minutes straight at 178-184 bpm and it's great for building power and increasing lactate threshold. Tonight will be another 1.5-1.75 hour ride at Endurance Pace, nothing too easy but not hard either. It's basically a day to recover between interval days as tomorrow I'll be doing Speed Intervals, basically 3 sets of 7x30sec intervals. Friday will be a rest day and Saturday will be a ride with a couple of Power Intervals thrown in to open up the legs. Sunday they are calling for a 40% chance of showers but it doesn't matter either way, the Madison course is pretty safe and if it rains, oh well, we still have to race. Until next time........

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Day of Family Fun

Today I didn't do any riding as the family and I went up to Devil's Lake for a day trip leaving at 8:00 and returning at 8:00 this evening. I would've loved to have ridden today as it was a beautiful day, but there was just no time obviously and I had to spend time with the family as that's more important than cycling right now. I've dragged my family around all year to races and sacrificed a lot of time with them this year to train so I figured it was best to spend the day with them especially since it was a holiday weekend. I did get in quite a workout though as we walked around Devil's Lake and up and over the 500ft. bluffs on the wonderful trails in the State Park. According to Melissa's pedometer we walked for a total of 8.5 miles and it definitely was hard on the quads going up those hills. My legs are more sore now than after an average bike ride, although I obviously used some muscles that aren't normally used for cycling so I expected some soreness. We ate a good lunch at the Park and then cooked out for dinner on the charcoal grill before packing up and heading out. We took our dog with as well and we completely wore him out, he's slept since we got back and was actually sleeping in the car on the way home. If you knew our dog, you would know that he's not much for sleeping, he's a 1.5 year old Shepard/Lab mix and he's a bundle of energy.
As far as training goes, I did manage to get in a good outside ride on Thursday, it was only 1.5 hours long but I did 3 sets of 8 minute Steady States which are basically 8 minutes at 89% of max HR and then equal rest. Friday I did an easy ride on the trainer for an hour since we spent most of the night packing up stuff to bring with today and doing the cleaning that we would normally do today. Tomorrow I'll be getting up early, hopefully 7:00 (early for me) and I'll head out on a route that's just a little over 50 miles. It will just be a normal endurance ride with a couple of good hills, no intervals or anything though. Monday will be just an easy hour on the trainer since it's a normal scheduled rest day, but I'll make up a little bit for missing today's ride. Tuesday will be some Descending intervals, Wednesday will be a normal endurance ride, Thursday will be some Speed Intervals, Friday a Recovery Ride, and Saturday will be an Endurance Ride with 3 reps of 2 min Power Intervals to prepare for Sundays Race. I'll update my training progress hopefully every day this week to let you know how it's going. This year's racing season is almost over and things are winding down, but I'm definitely thinking of next year already and can't wait to start prepping for that. Until next. time.............

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Winding Down

Sorry for the lack of posts this week, I did a really long post on Monday or Tuesday and when I submitted it I got some freakin' IE error and it didn't get saved. I was frustrated so I didn't bother re-typing it. Anyways, this week has been a really calm week for me, not much riding as I'm in a recovery week. I didn't ride on Monday as it is a usual rest day for me, and I had a busy weekend anyways with the State Crit and the Cream City Century. Tuesday I rode for a nice medium paced ride through Whitnall Park for 1.5 hours and had to actually put the smack down on some euro-trash wannabe riders. I believe in wearing helmets, I've crashed enough times during races and been hit by a couple of cars so I know their importance. Everyone is entitled to go sans helmet if they feel like it, it's their choice and there is no law against it. Tuesday though I was irked a little bit by a couple of guys who were riding through Whitnall and they were obviously not racers as evidenced by their hairy legs and their poser euro outfits, without helmets of course. I could see them coming behind me for a ways and I could tell they were trying to push it as they both had their heads down and were spinning pretty profusely. I slowed down as we were nearing a stop sign and there was a car stopped to the right of me, so he was getting ready to go and then I was going to go. Well, these posers come flying past me as this car takes off, they don't stop, almost get hit by the car and they just keep going, turning around once to laugh nervously at the car that narrowly missed them. I didn't have any respect for them first off because of the helmet thing, but that pushed me over the edge. They kept flying and I decided I was going to catch them and give 'em a little piece of my mind. I'm guessing they were going about 23-24 mph but I caught them pretty quickly which I think shocked them because I know they thought they were the fastest thing this side of France. I pulled along side them, said " nice move assholes, by the way, get yourselves some helmets" and their only response was a sheepish " yeah, whatever". I shifted down a few gears, took off, and at the next intersection they turned right when I went straight. I was hoping for a little more of a confrontation cause I think I could've taken them both with no problem, but at the least I hope they go get some helmets now. So on to Wednesday, it was a less adventurous ride as I rode with my wife and son just for the fun of it. We did 1 hour and it was a pretty good ride. My wife is doing a little training for the Pedal The Kettle on the 17th so it was good for her to get out. It was suuuuper slow but I didn't really care as there is only one race left this year and I'll be in form for that race regardless of what I do this week. Today I have to help coach my son's soccer practice at 5:30 until 6:30 and then I'll end up riding on the trainer tonight as there will only be 45 minutes of daylight left by the time we get home and I get changed. I'll be doing about 1.5 hours on the trainer with some intervals thrown in, about 3 reps of 8-9 minute Steady States. Tomorrow I'll ride for 1 hour easy, Saturday I leave at 8:00 to go to Devil's Lake for a day trip with the family but I'll ride before we leave, I'm hoping for about 1.5 hours if I can get up at 5:30. Otherwise I'll ride on the trainer at night when we get back. I haven't figured out Sunday and Monday yet as it might rain, I'll let ya'll know later. Until next time......

Saturday, August 26, 2006


Went to dinner and a movie...too late to do a full re-cap but here are some pictures.....Scott is in the first picture and he did an awesome job for the win..........

Disappointing 8th Place

Brief results.....I got 8th today in the State Crit Championships. A little disappointing considering I felt great. Full race re-cap and pictures will be posted tonight.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Been Pretty Busy

It's been a few days obviously since my last post so I'll try to re-cap as best as I can what I've been doing the last 6 days. The training has been going according to plan and I haven't missed any rides or strayed from the program so I'm feeling pretty good heading in to this weekend's State Crit Championship. I did a few easy rides on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday and then Saturday's ride was a little more difficult but only 2 hours in length and it didn't include any intervals. Sunday I did a great family ride with Melissa and Xavier and it basically served its purpose as a recovery pace ride. We did an hour long ride in New Berlin on the freshly paved New Berlin Recreation Trail and it was a fun, easy ride that everyone certainly enjoyed. I'm trying to get my wife in to cycling and with time constraints it's been difficult for her to ride but we have now ridden together the last two Sundays for a total of 30 miles. Last week we did 20 miles on Sunday, which was by far her furthest ride ever, and then we did 10 miles with our son this week and she said that it seemed easy. Maybe by the end of the year I'll get her out for a 40-50 mile ride, we'll see though. Around the house I've just been doing the normal stuff, working on the yard, remodeling the kitchen, cleaning up, basically all the fun stuff. Sunday night after the ride we went to Zoo a la Carte at the Milwaukee County Zoo and fed ourselves until we couldn't walk anymore, I weigh about 3lbs more now but it was well worth it. Yesterday was a rest day and I was supposed to go to the target range with my friend to shoot some guns but we got there too late and it was already closed. We ended up just relaxing at his house and enjoyed a couple of good beers, probably not ideal training fluids, but I'm sure it won't affect my performance on Saturday. Tonight I have to do a 2 hour ride with 3 sets of Descending Intervals which basically start at 75 seconds and count down to 30 seconds with equal recovery in between each rep. After each set I'll rest for 5 minutes and then start again, it's great training for crit races so hopefully I'm feeling good and can get in an optimal workout. After tonight I have a couple of easy rides tomorrow and Thursday and then Friday I'll do a couple of Power Intervals to open the legs for Saturday. Right now the forecast for Saturday is calling for a 40% chance of Thunderstorms, I'm praying that it holds out as that could really wreck the race strategy!
As an aside, anyone who wants an inspirational story and some motivation to get off their lazy butt should check out the progress of Saul Raisin on his website at I'm sure most of you know what happened to Saul and have kept up on his subsequent recovery, but if not, you probably wouldn't believe his story. To keep it short, Saul crashed in a European bike race and was in a coma after developing an intracerebral hemorrhage and was basically told he might never develop full function again as a result of his brain damage. After 4 months Saul was riding again on the rollers and trainer, as much as 21 hours per week!! According to his website he is now doing 3 hour rides on the road as well. Check it out and make sure to look at all of his past blog entries and his picture gallery, it's pretty moving stuff. Until next time, happy riding...........