Sunday, April 30, 2006


Start into the headwind Posted by Picasa

Off the back alone

I knew yesterday would be an epic ride its a shame I couldn't finish it though.The temp was hovering in the mid 40's with wind driven rain all day.Off the start into the head wind I was in the front just doing enough work to get warmed up.Nobody really turned up the notch untill mile 2 when we tuned south with a side wind.Everyone was guttered with their bikes leaning sideways into the wind,and road spray was going sideways off the tires.When we turned with the wind a huge surge was put in and the field broke to about 20 or so.I was near the back just trying to jump wheels to make it up to the front.We were going 30+ mph and I still had to jump out of the saddle to sprint to the next wheel.It was evident that everyone wanted to make this a race unlike the last one.The surges just kept comming and lasted a long time.My legs were not agreeing with my yet again and I knew I probably wouldn't be finishing this one if it kept up.With the wind the way it was if you lost the wheel in front of you and drifted off the back you were a goner.I did take a few pulls with Sam near the end of the first lap to close a gap to 2 riders,but Sam put the hurt on up the big climb at the end and I let the group go.I was DONE! I just spun out the last mile to the finish,and DNF.It wasn't the weather that got me,I was warmer on the bike than I was watching the race.Work took me out of this one.This whole week was like putting in an 8hr full body workout everyday.You can't do any intensity training after work on weeks like this.This is where things get frusterating for me.I want to be up there but its not possible when all your energy is used up at work.I just have to look ahead and hopefully things will turn around for the good.
Sam had got dropped from the lead group on the 2nd lap in the crosswind and came in alone.Those big guys can put out the juice in the wind and just pull like a lead dog.

Doug and Dan at the finish for the Cat 1/2 race.That is a sweet new team kit you guys

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Checkthis out.The mtb video's are the best. Man it would be fun to have their skills on that north shore stuff. Crazy stuff.

Thats one big ice cream barn

This week has been super tough on me at work.I'm at Valley Fair building the Ben and Jerrys ice cream barn.I just decided to make this week a recovery week on the bike.I'm really not getting any recovery as I'm sore and tired after work every day.I must be getting soft or something.I hate the drive too.It takes an hour to drive home because no matter which route I take, traffic is always backed up.

Yesterday one of our temporary guys walked off the job due to an abusive sup. I just don't get why some boss's just go off on their workers.It doesn't accomplish anything,and it sends alot of guys into a panic and they just make more mistakes.I can't believe I put up with it at Bor-son boot camp with drill sergant Wagner for 2 years.It was just about every day of being yelled at.And then they would tell me how they had it worse than me and every apprentice has to go through it.After a while you just get calloused about it or something.If I knew what I know now I would have walked off that job long before they laid me off.Those guys were so evil it was unreal.

Saturdays race looks rainy and cold.I don't know how the cat 4/5 roadies react in adverse conditions.If we get a few mtbers or cyclocrossers,they will probably feed off of it.We don't start untill 2:00 so I'll have plenty of time to wake up and warm up.Should be interesting

Sunday, April 23, 2006


The day started out cold,cloudy,and little wind.Sam had pre registered with the 4/5/citizen class but that was full on race day so I raced the 3/4 class.One more lap for me making it 54 miles.A little drama to start out like when everyone started staging I noticed I had a flat rear tire.Luckily I brought another wheel set so I quick changed it out.

Not alot to talk about in this race.It was slooooooooow.Nobody wanted to do anything and the organization was zero.The thing that struck me was the dude that made a solo break within the first couple miles and soloed it all the way for the win.That just tells you how unorganized everything was.There would be a surge for a few hundred meters,then slow to a crawl because the front would sit up and wouldn't let anyone pull through.I think after 2 laps everyone forgot about the dude on a solo because he was out of sight.The third lap a few guys broke away and were creating a big gap so I tried to get something going with Wenk on the last lap but nobody would help out.My legs were feeling like crumb buckets all day,So I couldn't pull off a spectacular bridge or break myself.I was suprized that I was able to keep up with the main group on the climbs because I was hurting so bad and going so slow.One of my team members was out ahead of the main group in the last few miles so I kind of sat back untill the end sprint when a GP guy went and I jumped on his wheel.It was too early as we both popped on the last hill to the finish,and the main field sped past me and I rolled in.I haven't seen results yet so check skinnyski.Either way It was kind of good for me that the field was going so slow because I felt like what they were spraying on the fields that morning.Making it without getting shelled out the back is a good day I guess.Its all a learning experience this year.Maybe next week will be my race. -EO

Friday, April 21, 2006


After Oxbow last weekend I haven't been feeling very good.Not sick, just ishy legs.When I get up to do an effort the lactic acid is right there.Like wednesday, I went on a mtb ride with Chris and Berry at Battle Creek,and Chris could just stomp up the hills.I couldn't even try to keep his wheel.So,I'm trying something different.This time I took thursday off and today a ridiculously slow ride.I spun everything and didn't even let the legs fill up.Two reasons why I think I'm feeling so ish-A.The week before, and of Oxbow I was feeling great,so It just might be a little slump.B.Work is not being so great.Somehow I got put incharge of a job at the United way.They didn't even say or ask me to do it.The project manager picks me up one day to move some sheetrock up the elevator because the elevator was going to be shut down(elevator upgrade),and he describes some walls to be built in the elevater tower.(Which he didn't do a very good job at because I misunderstood him and started building a wall in the wrong spot.Hey,what can you do when there aren't any prints for the job?Thats a different story).Anyways he offers me the contract and bid papers and asks "do you want these".I'm like,"No". I'm thinking to myself Why do you want to give me those, I'm not incharge.Boy was I wrong,here I am running around getting supplies,and ordering materials.But what can you do when your the only one there most of the time and in order to keep the job running it has to be done.I noticed I'm the kind of person who will yield to authority when its there but when there is non I tend to step in.I want to get stuff done and I'm not going to sit around and do nothing about it.Thats another reason why,a little more responsibility at work,and going up and down the steps isn't helping either.I gotta get ready for a race tomarrow see ya-EO

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Oxbow Spring Classic

Hold it up!...Yeeeeeaaaaa! Posted by Picasa

With a successful first race of the season under the belt, it builds alot of confidence in that your on the right track in training.Me and Sams fitness is doing supper right now and I hope we will only get stronger.It was a perfect day for a race today,mid to upper 70's and sunny.The wind was out of the SE at 20 mph which meant a headwind on most of the climbing.
We started in the B class which had some good talent.I don't know any roadie names yet but there were some pretty fast guys.The pace started out fast all the way to the "Oxenberg" climb.I was sitting in the top 20 and Sam was a few places ahead.Right at the base of the climb a rider goes down in front of me.How you crash on a climb is beyond me.I didn't go down but I came to a stop and struggled to clip back in on a 24% climb.(Ben Moore took the KOM with Sam being 2nd)At the top of the climb there was about a 20 man break ahead of me so I just had to pin it and put in a genormous effort to bridge the 100 yard gap.It was a good move because no one came with me and that lead group stuck the whole race.When I got on the back a few guys were dropping so I had to constantly go around to catch the next wheel.Luckily this whole time there was a tail wind or I might have never seen the front.When I finally got to the front Charlie Farrow was driving the pace pretty good and I finally settled into race mode.The pace settled down a bit here and there but there was about 10 of us that were really working well at the front.When we came around to the "Oxenberg" for the second lap I was about 5th at the bottom of the hill but felt pretty good on the climb and crested the hill in 2nd behind Ben Moore once again.Ben was on his new Top fuel and had better gearing for that climb.I was wishing I had a granny gear in the front at that moment.Anyway,that climb split the group down to 10 guys in the front.We had droped Charlie due to a flat and Jenna Zander struggled to bridge with Dan Cleary for miles but just couldn't do it in the headwinds. Ben was on fire just pounding on the front with his mtb.(it must run in the family).The roads were supper dusty and some sections had some deep gravel with only a couple good lines.On the last long downhill to the base of the finishing climb,the bigger guys on road bikes made attack after attack reaching speeds of 45mph.Me,Sam,and Ben just wanted to stay in contact to the base of the climb.Ben and his friend made the final attack with me, Sam and a few other guys in tow on the short flat before the "Oxenberg".At the bottom I was right behind Ben but as soon as my legs started to feel the 24% they said "I don't think so". I put her in reverse it seems as everyone came around me. Its all good though because Sam found a little kick at the end and took 2nd by only a wheel! And I barely made it up the hill in 7th. Everyone else agreed that the GP guy kind of sandbagged it the whole time because he sat at the back the most of the race.No one remembers seeing him on the front pulling.Oh well,thats road racing I guess. I had fun and I'm anxious to see what I can do on a nice light race bike instead of a 28lb beater.-E.O.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Dos Niner demo

First day for the pasty whites to come out. Posted by Picasa

Yesterday I took the demo bike I picked up from H'wood last week to Battle Creek for my first mtb ride of the year.We hit 79 degrees so it was a good time to start on the tan.Trail conditions were perfect.Just a little tacky with only 2 short wet sections that were avoidable.Anyway the verdict on the Dos Niner: My bike spec was Shimano XT disc brakes and drivetrain,Marzocchi Marathon sl fork,and xt hubs laced up on Salsa delgado-x rims.Those were wrapped with little Albert tires. The bigger wheels were noticable right off the bat and the front end felt reasonably higher. But over the course of a few laps I got used to it.Where the bigger wheels really shine is climbing traction,and carrying momentium through the rough stuff.The spots where a 26 inch tire would normally slip the 29er stayed glued down, even up a sloppy climb.You could easily run a medeocre tire and have just as much traction as a grippy 26".It rolls noticeably better through the rocks and roots.As for the 1" of rear travel, its not much but it takes the sharpness out of the hard pounding.I would forget that there was a shock back there at times.It feels more like a hard tail than a plush full-suspention.As far a nimbleness, I got used to it fast and I was going up and down sharp switchbacks just as fast as the Bandito. It was on the heavy side due to the spec,but I can shave a pound or two off by the spec I would get. I think I found my new ride this year.-EO

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Posted by Picasa Hey Sam, what did you think about that climb?

Going up

Going down
Me and Sam did one of our favorite hilly routes yesterday out in Wisconsin.We started at some friends house just outside of Hudson and went straight across on hwy 12 to Wilson just outside Knapp and from there we do about a 40 mile loop up and down through the valley.5 major climbs with 15%+ that take there toll on the legs.Throw in 3 dog chases and rolling hills all the way back in a headwind and you have a pretty tough day.83 miles in all and an avg of 18mph. No atomic bonk either.I feel like I'm starting alot stronger this year than ever before.I can handle a bigger work load from all the base miles and even though my legs get sore towards the end of a ride I can still pump out the watts.I don't feel like I'm overworking myself either,I've been taking my recovery days when I need them.

Speaking of the days,how about the weather lately.The ice came off the lake early this week,the frost is out of the ground,and I heard the loons for the first time this morning.I love waking up to them in the morning.This week every day will be in the 60's.I'll be packing away the hardcore winter clothing today and maybe get out and start cutting some singletrack.

Tomarrow is the final day for the new suite.I've been working there this last week and I think we'll finish it up in time.Last week my supervisor was totally wigging out because everything was going wrong for him.If you ask me he worries too much.There was a classic moment where I was working on the p-lam around the suite talking to the painter, and we hear loud, vehement cursing comming out of the bathroom.When we both look, a pair of safety glasses comes flying out the door.I just started laughing.He was in too much of a hurry drilling out a hole in the ceramic tile that he cracked it,now he created more work for himself.

Next saturday the races begin.Now that its here it seems the winter training has gone fast.I hope all that time will pay its dividens this year.It should be an exciting season.I wish everyone the best.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Posted by Picasa

We busted out the good bikes this week and did our first Afton loop on them.Oh,how light and nimble they are.The tables finally turned today too.Usually I'm the one glued to Sam's rear wheel most of the time.This time I was the one leading the way and I felt super good, especially the last 2 hrs.One of the best days so far this year.I also hit my record wattage so far-1,010 watts on the second hill out of Afton.I think with a little adrenaline flowing through the veins I can hit 1,100-1,200.Thats my goal anyway's. Its interesting to watch your wattage throughout a ride. Its harder to stay at a certain watt than it is to stay at a certain heart rate.And its easy to see the effects of drafting.The guy in front can be pushing 250+ while the guy in back is soft pedaling anywhere between 120-180.There is alot of information gathered on one of these things and the hardest part is knowing how to take that information and use it to taylor your training program,thats why I got the book "Training and Racing with a power meter" to help me understand the data gathered and put it to good use.It may still take a full season to experiment with it and find the optimal training plan to make me a stronger rider.

I gotta callthe boss yet today to see if I'm working at Valley Fair tomarrow.Today is going to be crappy,and I might get a chance to hang out with some former classmates.Should be good times.

Check this out. I think it will be a sad day in cycling when riders do a bike switch at the top of a mt pass for a 100lb+ bike.Might as well have them put on full face helmets and full downhill gear.I'm sure he got the idea from that Red Bull event where the gravity guys raced down a mt on rd bikes.