Wednesday, July 30, 2008


Weight: 212.8
Delta M: -.2
Mileage: 4 knots to nowhere
July Mileage: 438.6

With my knee being in questionable status Chas suggested I meet her and the kids at the local pool instead of riding today. I was going to waffle and just try riding anyway when somebody walked in from outside and the steamy heat rising off the parking lot at work wafted across and plastered my shirt to my skin and curled my eyelashes. It made that decision a whole lot easier.

I was hesitant to swim for a few reasons. First of all, despite my whining and complaining, I love biking. After being sick so much in the spring, taking rest days now just kills me. Second, my weight has been sinking like a rock with a hole in it. A good ride can burn damn near a thousand calories an hour. I looked at some charts and swimming burns like half that. Then there is the food factor. I don’t know what the deal is, but if I so much as dip my little toe in the water, it makes me hungry. I mean HUNGRY. Like eat 2 foot long subs, a large order of onion rings, and a large chocolate shake, on the way to grandma’s house for dinner hungry. And finally, one word, shrinkage.

After today’s showing at the pool, I will be back on the bike tomorrow. I am definitely going to have to address upper body strength this off season. I only swam for like 30 minutes, and I know I’m going to feel it in my arms tomorrow. I could barely get from one end of the pool to the other.

You wouldn’t know it having watched me flounder around this afternoon, but I used to be a pretty good swimmer. Between swim team practice, and hanging out with friends at the pool in the summer, I was in the water for 6-8 hours a day. I was better at the sprint events, free style, butterfly, whatever as long it was under a hundred meters. I could hold my breath for 4 minutes, so on the 50 free, I wouldn’t have to breathe. One day at the pool I went up the high dive, acted the clumsy jack ass as I went over, then sank to the bottom, and just laid there. I’m guessing I was sitting on the bottom for 2 or 3 minutes before the first life guard got to me. An ambulance was called and everything. The paramedics didn’t think the whole gag was near as funny as I did. They threatened to call my parents, but then I mentioned it sure seemed like I was under water a long time before anyone came in after me. I was asked to leave, and not to come back to the pool the rest of the summer.

For the record, that picture is a Trident class submarine. I used to drive one of those.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008


Weight: 213.0
Delta M: -2.8
Mileage: 23
July Mileage: 438.6

I think I may have jacked up my knee pretty good yesterday when I took Son#1 out for frozen custard. I felt a twinge before when I was doing the intervals, but didn’t think any of it. I think the seat is either still to low on the Critterpuller, or too far forward or something because both knees started hurting. It may even be the archaic Biopace chain rings on that tank. Either way on our way home last night I had to take my right leg off the pedal and just let it hang for about a quarter mile or so every so often.

Both knees were hurting again on my ride today. I headed out from the shop with Patty to do an easy spin down to Waterman. As I got warmed up my left knee started feeling better, but the right knee got worse. We hit the end of 23 and I had to ask Patty to stop for a minute. Coming back up things just got progressively worse. Putting too much torque on it hurt, and spinning too fast hurt just as much, so I was kind of screwed. About 5 miles from home I started contemplating the call of shame, but it looked like it was going to start raining on us, and I figured by the time Chas got the kids packed in, and got out to me on the road, in the rain, I could be in the driveway. Thank God for clipless pedals, I ended limping home on the port engine, in a down poor.

This presents a conundrum of sorts. The best thing I can do for my liver is lose weight, to lose weight I need to ride, to ride I think I’m going to need some Ibuprofen. I can’t take Ibuprofen because I have an obese liver. Fat liver or not, I popped some Advil. I also iced it for a while, and consumed every natural anti-inflammatory food we had in the house. I’ll probably take Wednesday of, maybe even Thursday. I have that race on Sunday I have to worry about. I am making good progress on the weight loss, stalling out is not an option.

It wasn’t a total loss, two cool things of interest! We have a retired porn star living up the road a bit, if my local geography knowledge is correct, I think she lives in a trailer park. How classic is that!?!?!?!?! Second, Kathy, an employee at the LBS saw me floundering in the rain on her way home. She essentially stopped her pick up in the middle of a state highway, ignoring all the car horns and single fingered salutes, in the rain, to offer me a ride home. If I wasn’t about a quarter mile from the house I would have jumped into the back of that pick up in a heartbeat! Thank you Kathy.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Ketchup Part Uhhh...errr...ummmmm-pffft whatever

Two condiments in a row! I hope it isn’t an evil omen with sinister portent. Did I just use portent in a sentence? Did I use it correctly? Am I being redundant, again? My blood sugar must be really low. It has been brought to my attention that I have not posted since last Wednesday. Thank you Warden. She even nags, I mean advises me, in cyberspace. Anyway, here is a quick round up.

Thursday: Not much. I was pretty torn up from Wednesday. I stayed home and played responsible husband and father.

Friday: I tried hooking up with Aaron to see if he’d pull me around town with that fixed gear of his, but he wasn’t having it. Something about a girlfriend, a life, and better things to do than listen to a fat guy wheeze and groan and cry on a Friday night. I don’t blame him. Instead I hooked up with Phil and Brent, two wrenches from the shop. They aren’t your typical wrenches though, they have, or are about to get their Masters in philosophy or something like that. Between the two of them, if you toss in Tobie’s charisma, and Jay’s masters work in bio/chem molecular drug delivery vehicle research, they could all get together and start a halfway decent cult if they had a mind to. Lucky for me they all just hang out at the bike shop waiting for me to show up in a panic to get tire changed or gear shifty thingy adjusted.

So anyway, I headed out for a ride with them. I guess I could have used another rest day, or maybe some more calories, but either way I wasn’t at my best. Not that these two couldn’t drop me in less than a mile if they wanted to but I think with a little more rest and food in me, I could have held out till maybe mile 26 instead of 21, and could have taken some longer pulls. Anyway, it was a fun ride. They finally dropped me right about mile 21, I went home and ended up with 27 for the day. I talked to Brent today and I guess they ended up finishing about 35 miles total after they pulled away from me. Oh yeah, Friday morning I weighed in at 213.8.

Saturday: After Friday’s poor showing, I took a rest day Saturday, kind of. Son#1 and I took off to Libertyville to help a friend move. It wasn’t as bad as it sounds, there were a few of us there to help, and we all had fun watching Son#1 try to carry like 5 times his body weight on and off the truck. He is like a frick’n carpenter ant when it comes to moving. We couldn’t slow him down. I weighed in at 213.8 again.

Sunday: I weighed in at 217.8 lbs!!!!! I did indulge on the food a little Saturday. I had some breakfast burrito thingies, and a donut. After the move I ate a considerable amount of pizza and 2 tall glasses of Sprite. At roughly 3500 calories a pound, that comes to 14000 surplus calories for the day on Saturday. As I was telling Steve, I could almost accept the justice of gaining 4lbs if I had actually consumed 14000 calories worth of pizza and donuts, but seeing as I only had 1 donut, and I’m fairly certain my stomach can't physically hold 13500 calories worth of pop and pizza in one sitting, I don’t see the justice in that kind of weight gain. Chalk it up to sodium or something I guess, I don’t know.

I did a 23 mile spin down to Waterman and back in the morning, ate some lunch, watched a little TV with Son#1, then basically did wind sprints behind my lawn mower for 1 hour and 15 minutes trying to get the lawn done in time for Chas to get a ride in herself. She did a little over 14 miles I think. Not a bad effort on her part, she was huffing when she came up the porch stairs. I have to cap her alloted ride time or before you know it she'll be dropping me too.

Today/Monday: I headed out to do some intervals. I started out strong, but got progressively worse, which I suppose is kind of how it is supposed to work, but it was working a little too good for me. I was just starting the downward side of the pyramid, looking for an excuse to quit when Jay came buy heading the opposite direction. He doubled back and caught me just as I was finishing the first rep. I have never been so glad to have somebody catch me in mid sprint with so little effort on their part. We just talked the rest of the way back up. It wasn’t a max effort on my part, but I definitely came back up faster riding with him than I would have by myself. Jay is good company on a bike.

So after that it was a quick stop at the house, a change of clothes, a change of bikes, a handful of grapes, a fresh bottle of water, than me and Son#1were off on the Critterpuller headed out for his first Ollie’s run. I got us a little lost trying to figure out the safest way there on a hinged tandem pulling a six year old. It was all worth it though. I asked for sprinkles for my kids cone and they gave me a Dixie cup full of them. Son#1 would take a lick of the cone, I would dump more sprinkles on it. I’ve never seen a kid enjoy an ice cream so much. This one is definitely going on my list of all time favorite bike rides. I was a good boy, I only had a couple of sprinkle that got stuck on my finger getting the paper wrapper of the kids ice cream cone. All told I figure I got about 30 miles in. I weighed in at 215.8.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Tastes like chicken!

Weight: 217.6
Delta M: -1
Mileage: 34.7
July Mileage: 335.6

I know I have professed my love of Ketchup in the past, but I find this goes better with crow. When used in conjunction with a nice balsamic vinegar as a marinade, it can tenderize as well as flavorize. The group ride I thought I would outgrow in about a month has started turning the screws on me. Brian and Mike showing up was not a good sign, and as soon as they started talking about how blown out they were from the century and yesterday’s intervals, I knew I was screwed. Last week I got dropped but there were some minor extenuating circumstances, this week they just straight up put the hammer down, and I am just not at that level yet.

I held on for the most part, but only on because Mike saw me flailing at one point and dropped back to give me a wheel back up to the group. I had slowed down too much on a corner and lost the pack. Then a few miles up the road I almost got dropped off the back but Brian had dropped back to check on me and he cracked the whip on my ass, Joel would have been proud of him, the timing, the delivery, the impact! I shuttled my ass right back on to the nearest wheel right quick!

That was about mile 25 or 27 I think, after that I was just holding on to the closest wheel with all I had left. I remember at one point coming up a shallow hill doing 25, and then the big dogs started dropping off the front and peeling back. The pulls were becoming shorter and shorter. A mile or two out of town they all took off for the final sprint deal. I was already pushing 175 bpm just holding on, but I gave it a try and spike out at 190 then gave up. I checked my average just after I blew up there at the end, it was19.8

I’m not sure if it was the ride, the fact that I maybe wasn’t fully recovered from Sunday, or even the ride with Aaron last night, or just the level of the ride, but I am shot! I’m currently sitting on one of my sons diapers because if I have to pee, I’m not sure I can get up.

It was awesome. You can’t buy good times like that.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Recovery? PFFFFFFFFT!!! Whatever.

Weight: 218.6
(I actually peaked at 221.6 Monday after the century, WTF?)
Delta M: -1
Mileage: 26
July Mileage: 326.9

Aarron texted me as I was driving home from work, asking if I was up for a ride. I hadn’t realized it yet, but I actually had a hankering for a little pain. I figured we’d meet, head out, I would try to hang on for a while and just count it a blessing that the sweat literally squirting out of my pores would camouflage the tears streaming down my cheeks. Then I would blow up and vomit just as the trip meter rounded over about mile 3.5 or 4. You can't beat that kind of action on legs still sore from a century, so I called him right back. I can’t text and drive. I can’t text and anything really. In fact, I can barely text at all. Stupid cell phones. You want comedy? Watch a dyslexic fat dude with a fatty liver who flunked college algebra like 4 or 5 times try to figure out how many times he has to hit the 9 button to capitalize a letter. Whatever, I just call.

But when I get to the shop Aaron was on the fixed gear he had been working on when he put my crank on for me. I got all excited thinking I’d actually be able to hold on for a while, maybe even converse with Aaron on a ride! Ummmmm….yeah, I was wrong. Joel is right, Aaron just does not ride slow. Ever. Period. On an aerodynamic parachute of a steel tank, geared at 42x15, he had me wheezing before we hit the Peace Rd trail. This is just wrong. I did find that if I drafted him for a bit, I could then surge forward and get out a couple of complete sentences before my lips turned blue and my vision grayed out too much, but then I would have to duck back into his wake again. And what a wake it was! It’s a Surly MTB frame, a 1x1 I think, but he has 7oo wheels on it, so he sits pretty high. Then he has these monstrously wide handle bars on it, cars pretty much have to give him the lane. I went to cut back in once on 64, but I had to get in line behind this Peterbuilt hauling John Deere tractors that was sucking his wheel, his wake was that big. It’s actually a sweet looking ride, green frame, wide ass flat bars, white grips, saddle and Deep V rims, it’s a pimp look’n steed, I am a little jealous.

He of course annihilated me on the few hills we got out here, but he would have done that on a geared bike dragging an anchor. Every time I got close to calling out for mercy I caught him and managed to catch my breath drafting him. I think that may have been intentional on his part. For all I know he was in cahoots with Joel, I can hear the phone conversation now… “Don’t slow down till you hear him crying, he’s fat now, so that should be pretty quick and loud, then act like you got a mechanical issue or something and let him catch you again. Wash. Rinse. Repeat.”

Oh well, it was a great ride, exactly what I was looking for. Although it seemed like a tough ride at first, I found myself recovering from my harder efforts much faster than I would have a month ago, so progress is being made. Besides all that, Aaron is pretty cool to ride with, I hope we can get at least a couple more in before the season is up.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

I got up at 5 AM on a Sunday for this?

Weight: 219.6
Delta M: 1.8
Mileage: 106.3
July Mileage: 300.9

It’s kind of blurry, but if you look closely, that says TRP, and in Trip, and not ODO, as in odometer, and that decimal point is just west of the three, not the four. This can only mean one or two things. Either I actually rode 104.3 miles today, completing my first century, or I just haven’t reset my bike computer the past few rides. Judging the way tendons are starting to solidify as I type, the funky tan lines across my quads, and the way the balls of my feet feel like somebody took a mallet to them, I think it would be a safe bet to place money on that century. Actually, counting the ride to the start point and stuff, I rode 106.3 miles.

Of course with an average speed of 14.4 mph, this was no Grand Tour performance, but I’m just pleased as punch I didn’t have to call The Warden to come pick me up in the Prison Bus at mile 41. Everything is a little stiff and sore, but the worst of it is my feet. I’m sure my legs will be complaining more tomorrow as well. I learned a couple of interesting things, but most important, a decent chamois cream is worth its weight in gold, platinum even!

Thursday, July 17, 2008


Weight: 217.8
Delta M: -2.4
Mileage: 13.7 (WEAK!)
July Mileage: 194.6

What can I say, some days you just don’t feel like riding. Maybe it was the heat & humidity, maybe I over did it yesterday, maybe I shouldn’t have walked for my late lunch, from 1-2 this afternoon, but man, I did not feel like riding today. This point was only emphasized as I headed south into the wind for my second interval of the week, dutifully monitoring my heart rate and time to make sure I was good and warmed up, watched the clock turn 15:00 minutes, down shifted, got out of the saddle to start the sprint, looked down, and happen to notice my water bottle holders were empty. I filled them, I know I did, my gloves were still wet from the stupid sink head I need to replace. My first wife (she LOVES it when I use that one) was probably staring at them on the kitchen sink, waiting for the call from the hospital, or the news report on TV, “local biker collapses in heat from dehydration, investigators suspect stupidity, more after The Simpsons.” Hmmmmm…97 degree heat index, and I am getting ready to start intervals with only the water I drank on the drive home…maybe not a good idea…if I passed out in this after last month’s round of heat exhaustion, my Mommy would literally come take my bikes away…going off of how big my bike piles have gotten this summer, and the fact they have migrated to The Warden’s prison bus, Chas would let her, she may even be the one to turn me in…maybe an easy spin, 30 minutes out and back…yeah, that sounds doable..

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


Weight: 220.2
Delta M: +1
Mileage: 39.2
July Mileage: 180.9

39 miles, that's my longest ride yet this year. I think I came pretty close to bonking. One minute I'm feeling great on fresh legs, then next BAM! I got nothing. I told my legs to go faster, they just weren't having it, and I got dropped at the end. I finished about a quarter mile off the group. I think this stems from the whole eating for weightloss as opposed to eating for performance issue. I think if i had snacked a little more this afternoon, or brought a sport drink on the ride, I might have been able to hold on.

I kind of saw the weight gain coming, but oh well, I did a good job of not going too far overboard. I'm new to this moderation thing, I'll do a little better next time.

I'm beat, and there are some grapes and strawberries in the fridge calling my name, later!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

219 WAHOO!!!! Well, at least till tomorrow morning anyway.

Weight: 219.2
Delta M: -2.6
Mileage: 0
July Mileage: 141.7

My Aunt and Uncle came in from Florida, and we all met at a cousins for dinner, so I took a rest day this evening. I think my legs were ready for one anyway. Unfortunately, it was at Genie's house, and she can cook! I did my best to restrain myself, but I think I may have over did it on the chips and salsa. They were some weird organic chip thing, and the salsa was a home made concoction loaded with corn and beans, but a calories is a calorie. The dinner itself wasn't exactly low fat either. Oh yeah, the home made carrot cake did have carrots in it, but it had frosting as well. I managed to stay away from the ice cream, but that was really easy seeing as there wasn't any. All in all, relatively speaking, I was a good boy. If we had met in March, I would have eaten myself sick, but I will be shocked if I am sub 220 again tomorrow.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Hey Ladies! My eyes are up HERE!!!!!!

Weight: 221.8
Delta M: 0
Mileage: 16.7 (intervals/road bike)
July Mileage: 141.7

I want to establish a couple of things. I am not a mere piece of meat. There is more to me than mere bone and muscle, a lot more actually, like 40+ pounds more. There are feelings, there is a heart, there is a liver, that if not still obese at this point is at the very least still a little bit chunky. It is sensitive, it is still insecure about the love handle bulging up over its 501’s. Second, let me just establish the fact that cool stuff like this NEVER EVER happens to me. I don’t have hot blonde chicks just show up at my door with a case of beer on a Friday night-STEVE!* I don’t have women who can’t keep their hands off of me just move into the condo next door- Steve Koz! *

So I’m just riding along in my 5 minute rest before I have to start back down my pyramid interval, when this car full of girls (teenagers I’m sure, but I wasn’t wearing my glasses) lays on the horn behind me and yells something incoherent. People are always yelling incoherent things at me, so I didn’t think anything of it at first. Well then they pull into a driveway just up ahead of me, wait for me to pass, and get back on the road. A few seconds later I can hear the car driving slowly behind me, then one of the girls screams “Wahoo!! Show me that butt!!!” I was a little shocked to say the least. Lucky for them, I was wearing bib shorts, and I’m not all that coordinated after half a set of intervals, or I would have obliged them. Still bearing some hefty road rash from last week, I’m sure leaving my pale, hairy cheeks contained in my shorts was best for all involved though.

So a few miles up the road, intervals complete, vomit barely contained, I come to an intersection. This black convertible starts to pull out in front of me, then stops. Although close, they had ample time to get across without cutting me off. This cougar is at the wheel and she is totally ogling me over the edge of her sunglasses! I even wiped my face and cleared the sweat out my eyes to make sure I was seeing things right. It usually takes a shower, a shave, a shirt with buttons on it, and 2 or 3 drinks to get my own wife to look at me like that! I blushed! I don’t do that often, like maybe every 14 years or so, MAYBE.

*Normally I would have to answer to The Warden for making whimsical comments like this, but seeing as while I was out working, whoring my soul for enough money to keep a roof over our heads she was online flirting with my friends, I think she’ll let it slide this time!!! Or maybe she was actually cleaning out like 4 years of junk, the sort only a 6 year old boy can accumulate, out of his room while he was with his Grandma in Seattle and couldn’t interfere, and I am really a dead man. If I haven't posted again by Thursday, I'll guess you'll know.

Sunday, July 13, 2008


Weight: 221.8
Delta M: -1.0
Mileage: 22.5 Saturday/14 Sunday
July Mileage: 125

We had kind of a slow weekend over here. I woke up to thunder and pooring rain Saturday morning. About 20 minutes after I got the call canceling the Pancake Ride, it cleared up, for the most part. Seeing a break in the in the rain on the weather map, I slipped out for a ride in the afternoon and did pyramid intervals down to Waterman. I hate you Joel. I really do. I mean I’m thankful for the riding tips, and the bike maintenance, and all the other cool stuff, but these intervals, they pretty much cancel all that out. I only got rained on a little. On the way back I stopped at the shop and got to show off my cool war wounds to the Saturday crew.

My legs were pretty torn up after the intervals Saturday, and I had to mow the lawn today, so I opted for a quick recovery roll. I did about 14 miles total I think out to Malta and back. I wasn’t paying too much attention to the odometer, I was mainly just out to loosen the legs up a little, I was more concerned with keep my heart rate under 140bpm. It was pretty windy. At one point on the way back, I was doing 31mph and my heart rate was only 122 bpm. I’ve never seen that before.

I’m not sure what is up with my weight. I put the miles in this week, both on my bike and on my feet, and I really didn’t do too bad in the diet department. I’ve had to take on some extra calories eating some yogurt to offset the antibiotics I’ve been taking the past 2 weeks, and I may or may not have eaten about 2 cookies worth of raw cookie dough at my parents' house on Saturday, but none of that can cover the death grip my body seems to have on 220’s the past few weeks. On Saturday morning I weighed in at 220.1, then on Sunday I was back up to 221.8. Maybe I had too much salt or something. This week, I’m going to hit 219 if it kills me, I swear.

Friday, July 11, 2008

How High's the Water Momma?

Weight: 222.8
Delta M: -1.0
Mileage: 30
July Mileage: 88.5

It looks like tomorrow’s pancake ride (I was going to opt for some oatmeal this time) is going to get rained out. Call me a wuss I guess. I mean I don’t mind getting caught out in the occasional thunderstorm on my bike, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to plan a 40 mile ride in the stuff. That’s what weirdo’s do. I’m sure they are fast and skinny though.

Not much worthy of blogging about tonight. I did a 30 miler after work. I was going to do some intervals but I was planning on a long ride early in the morning. Plus this was my first ride in any real significant heat since my bout with heat exhaustion; I wanted to test the waters a bit on that end. I think I would rather have a compound greenstick fracture of my right femur than go through that again

Oh yeah, here is a shot of the storm that kept me in last night-

…and then today I slipped my ride in between some storms this afternoon. I better not hear the farmers complaining about rain this year.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Are the clouds supposed to spin like that?

Weight: 222.8
Delta M: -1.0
Mileage: No way Jose!

July Mileage: 58.5

No ride tonight, we had like 4 separate fronts blow all kinds of shit around here. No big deal, I got my walk in at work, and my legs are still a little sore from yesterday's ride.

It's supposed to be a hot one tomorrow! I might just stop at the hospital on the way home and swipe a bag or two of lactated ringers. Nothing says serious recovery like IV fluids.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Please Pass The Ketchup

Weight: 223.8
Delta M: -2.2
Mileage: 23.5
July Mileage: 58.5

It was kind of a weird group ride tonight. Brian and Greg showed up. I’ve only seen them on the faster rides. Then some Marcos guy showed up on a Haro MTB wearing gym shoes, and we picked up some people as we headed out of town. The Wednesday group usually averages around 16 or 17 mph, we were pushing that out of town. Brian got in front and as the wind picked up and we hit an uphill he brought us up to about 19. I haven’t seen these other guys do that before, but I have no doubt at least a couple of them can put the hammer down when they want to. Anyway, next thing I know we’ve turned into the wind, I’m trying to keep on Brian’s wheel, Greg is right on my mine, and we are doing 21-23 mph. I held on till we hit mile 5.9 but then blew up. My heart was hitting the upper 180’s. I was pretty stoked about that though, last time I tried to keep up with these guys a few weeks ago, I was only able to hold on for about two miles, maybe.

As I peeled off to the left Greg realized I was toast and took off to catch Brian on his own. That’s what you get when you draft the Clydesdale of the bunch, I don’t know what he was thinking. Drifting away from the shoulder I fully expected the rest of the group, minus the dude on the Haro, to blow by me. That’s what used to happen when I blew up. I kind of expected to hear Joel chuckle something under his breath as he went by me, but soon remembered where I was, somewhere in the middle of nowhere, not sure of what roads we took to get there. I looked back and the rest of the group was barely visible coming around the last turn, damn near a mile away. This has never happened to me before. Then they took another turn. Brian and Greg were disappearing over a hill and I knew I wasn’t catching them so I beat feet for the others.

I caught them and held on for a while, but it was hard, I was pretty tore up. One of the other riders started having some back spasms or something, then started cramping and decided to turn around. I was just going to let them go, but we were kind of in the middle of nowhere, and I remembered my bout with heat exhaustion so I opted to ride back with them. We were about 10 miles out and I was pretty much shot anyway, so it was no big loss. Shortly after we turned around we came across that dude on the Haro, I was impressed.
So about last weekend… I started the gorge fest early at Culver’s on Wednesday night. I got called back into work on an emergency just as I was getting home. We had lost power in a storm, and the generator never came online and the UPS ran out of juice. Very Ugly. Chas offered to drive me back and hang out with the kids while I kick started the server back up, then we could eat. It was a way cool idea, I hadn’t got any good family time all week, and Son#1 loves going to work with me when I do weekend stuff. After that it was series of small steps that led to eventual all out gluttonous rampage that really didn’t end till Sunday night. I did get one ride in the 4rth with Chas, we hit some old trails I use to ride with Steve at one point, way back in the mid 90’s. Chas actually did 17 miles! Not bad for only second ride, after more than a year off the bike, and having just spit out a 10 pounder on Valentine’s Day. It was a great weekend, but oh man, did I pay for it. Did you know you can get a food hangover?

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

We laughed, we cried, we fell off our bikes like jackasses. Part Duh -I mean Part Duex

Well, at least I did. I had stopped by the shop to get a weird jump in my rear wheel checked out when I ran into Brian. I’ve run into him a few times before, and use to ride with him on the group rides back when I was riding more. He’s a tad older than me, but comparatively speaking he is in excellent condition. He races for Team MAC I believe. Now I had every intention of getting the wheel checked out and doing an easy hour or so because I told Chas I’d be back around 7:15 or so. Well, Joel has been saying if I want to get faster, I need to ride with faster people, and when it comes to training and bikes, I tend to listen to Joel. Or at least I try to; he usually tells me to do something, I blow it off two or three times, then I try it, but then I usually jack it up, just like I did this time. So, when Brian asked if I wanted to go for a ride I said sure. We decided to head towards Waterman, which usually ends up being a 20-25 mile loop or out and back depending on who is navigating. He said he had a rough day at work (he’s a carpenter),was recovering from a weekend race, and he was going to keep it under 17 mph. Now anybody who’s ever gone on a fast group ride knows what this means, he’s going hammer me into the ground.

Surprisingly, he didn’t, we lit out of town around 19 mph, and held that for a few miles. We actually hit a train on 23, which never happens, in fact, in 3 years of off and on riding, I have never hit a train there. So we diverted to some side roads and I got lost. Brian asked about heart rate, and I told him it was 162. He then said we should back off and he dropped down to about 17 mph! My heart rate immediately hit 180. Had I told Joel I was pushing 165 bpm at 19 mph, he would have laughed, called me a freak or a wuss, make some comment about lactate something or other and speed it up to 21 mph. I miss Joel.

So we were zigging and zagging down some side roads, had to turn around a few times because the pavement ended when Brian veered off to make a right, I slowed a little more, veered a little wide behind him and hit gravel. It looked like clean pavement to me, but I didn’t have my glasses on so who knows. Brian happened to be looking back, and I saw his eyes bugging out a nanosecond before my front tire started washing out. For a split second I almost recoverd, but in the end I was over taken by gravity. At the last second I realized I was going down on my brand new totally pimp’m cranks and threw out my hip to save them. Just kidding, I’m not anywhere near that bad assed, I just kind of happened to fall that way.

I had to readjust my front brake, whack my hood back into place, and shake some gravel out of the shifter, but otherwise the bike was OK. The side of my calf got scraped up, my elbow and forearm got a little banged up, and I got some road rash on my hip. I would have gotten a picture of that too, but do you guys really want to see my pale hairy ass? The missing 3 square inches of epidermis doesn’t exactly improve the image much, trust me. Besides, I don’t want to have to go through the headache of putting adult content warnings and age disclaimer crap up on this blog.
The long and short of it, I’ll be a little stiff the next few days, but I’ll live. Tomorrow’s group ride should loosen everything up, or if not, hopefully snap it back into place.

I’ll do some catching up tomorrow; get all the mileage and gory details about my weekend of culinary debauchery and all that. For now, I can sum it up in one 3 digit number-226!!!! Yoiks! As much as I ate, and as much as I didn’t ride, I’m surprised it’s not more.

Monday, July 7, 2008


I didn’t step on the scale this morning, I was in full on Monday Morning Mode after a weekend of culinary debauchery and it kind of slipped my mind. Or at least that is what I’m telling you guys. It has nothing to do with the fact I didn’t want to face the grizzly truth. Nothing at all. I was a good boy today though, stuck tight to the diet, walked during lunch, went for a ride after work blah blah blah. There will be a weigh in and ride stats tomorrow.

I got home a little later than I planned, and loafed a little longer once I got there, and was up against time constraint, so my available ride time was cut a little short. Wanting to cram a lot of workout into a little time I opted to try the Pyramid Intervals Joel keeps pushing on me. I had heard that Power Intervals were the be all end all of pain and suffering, and I had survived a few of those, so while not exactly planning on a pleasant experience, I figured I could handle pyramids. Uhhhhhhhh yeah, they suck too. I spent 30 minutes in a cold shower, and 3 hours later, the simple act of tying my shoes makes me start to sweat profusely again. It turns out you can stick pretty much any word in front of interval, and it will still suck; Pyramid, Power, whatever, it doesn’t matter they are all completely interchangeable with “Holy crap this is going hurt” That is fact, just email your CTS certified coach, they’ll tell you. In fact they suck so much, that when I told Aaron I tried it today he only looked at me quizzically and said “Why?” That is a very profound and pertinent question. What most people don’t know is that intervals is a contraction of sorts. It’s short for Soul Sucking Painful Vomit Inducing Physical Training Concept That Gradually Erodes Your Will To Live In 1 To 15 Minute Intervals.

Actually, intervals aren’t that bad, and it was a fun ride. The real problem I had was the wind. Heading south into a 20 mph headwind isn’t too bad, but single speeds don’t really allow you to take advantage of tail winds, and in this case having a tail wind kind of sucked. The wind seemed to match my speed all the way home, and that meant no wind to cool me off. This, coupled with the fact I forgot sun block made me feel like I was being microwaved. I can think of more pleasing sensations, like chewing on tin foil right after getting a cavity filled.

The whole reason I had to wrap things up early was Aaron offered to help me put my new cranks on tonight. I brought the camera but forgot to check for a memory stick, so no action shots but this is the final result, a few hundred grams of uber-stiff, smooth as silk shifting anodized Ultegra!
They look pretty pimp on my bike too, matches like Garanimals, I swear it! It’s going to be a fun ride tomorrow, what with actually being able to shift into the big ring when I want to and all. I can’t wait. Thanks Aaron, I hope you enjoy those Newcastles.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Time For a Quicky?

OK, I had a 13 hour day at the office today, so I’m kind of shot, but I figured I’d better post something before I lose my loyal reader.

The trip was an absolute blast. There was maritime adventure, recreational internal combustion engines everywhere you looked, and even a history lesson or two for the boy. I think the highlight for me was the look on “Uncle Steve’s” face when my 6 year old asked him what his nipple ring was for. You don’t catch Steve speechless too often.

I think I blimped out about 5 lbs on the trip, but then the antibiotic I started taking on Sunday kind of tore me up, so I’m not sure where I’m at weight wise. I’m feeling a bit better now, so I’m gonna try and hit the bike tomorrow and maybe weigh in on the 4rth.

August 3rd, an old high school friend and I are teaming up for a race.

And oh yeah, I almost forgot, The Ultegra commeth! My new crank should be here on the 5th or 6th. My first real upgrade; I'm so excited!