Tuesday, June 30, 2009

that sucked

flat tire 15 miles in. used last co2 to limp in to cresco thinking i had a presta valve adapter and would change the tube at a gas station. nope. hit the bike trail for 10 miles, then a black top for the last 10 and time trialed a total of 20 miles to get home before i was totally flat. ended up with 40+ miles but wanted 60+ and nowhere near the amount of pavement i ended up riding. guess a long training/recovery ride turned into a tt/cadence type training ride. yay. here's to hammering a single speed bike with cross tires on black top. so it is.

Monday, June 29, 2009

bluff rider's charge recap

love this course...always have. amazing what happens when the mind, body and bike are all dialed. made a huge step forward in this race and felt great. ended up 17th overall and 4th age group. 9 of the 16 ahead of me were pros. mankato rides a lot like 7oaks...just enough climbing, super fast and buff, carved corners that let you keep your speed...just a lot of fun to race on. i was able to take advantage of climbing on the ss to get around some geared folk at a few different points on the course, gave a couple of those positions back but was able to make enough of the passes stick to feel good about my fitness. previous races here left me with some confidence and course knowledge that got my head straight. and the jabberwocky is absolutely on right now. everything on it is dialed and it is happily encouraging me to ride it harder and push it further. i could not have raced this race any better than i did...and that's an awesome feeling. its easy to accept my finishing place when i know thats just how good i am and realistically the best i can do until i'm able to get my fitness up. off next weekend then headed back to minnesota for the red wing race in 2 weeks. cam had a good ride to 4th in the pro/expert field. got to meet jesse rients after reading so much about him on charlie's blog. marty and trevor were out there doing their thing in the comp class. awesome weather and a great result for me...can't do anything but smile after a day like that.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

awesome ride today

didn't work out to meet up with matt but got a good ride in with o'gara and trevor. got dumped on in the middle of it enough to break the heat and grease up the trails to the point of making them technically pretty tricky. dropped out of the ride a little early due to work and the race tomorrow. just one of those rides that leaves you with a huge smile on your face. hopefully tomorrow will do the same.

getting back to racing...finally

the self-imposed month off from racing seems to have worked out okay in terms of fitness, but its time to get back at it. headed to mankato tomorrow to shake the cobwebs loose a little bit. just over a month away from the wilderness trail 101 with three xc races before i head out. the 101 is definitely taking over in terms of focus (or is that fear?!?!?). got a call from matt from des moines yesterday so will be meeting him for a trail ride in a few hours. had a great ride at mankato last year in the comp class, hoping to get into the fast half of the expert field tomorrow. always liked this course and i'm not that far off...

Friday, June 26, 2009

haven and vassago

i can't even imagine...wishing you guys the best.
the peronal side of the story: http://haveyroo.blogspot.com/
the business side: http://vassagocycles.com/news/news.html

Thursday, June 25, 2009

end of the world

yeah...this has been around for a while and lots of people have already seen it. regardless, its one of the funniest things i've seen. if you don't agree we could chalk it up to a difference in senses of humor but in reality there's probably just something wrong with you. click here. laugh. if you don't laugh the first time, watch it til you do.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

dirt burger and other updates

my version of the dirt burger is shorter than some as it was broken into chunks by that nasty thing called work. regardless, bikes were ridden, drinks were drunk, drunks drank, sleep was optional and limited, fun was had. my participation involved a spirited ride through the back alleys of decorah (led by a guy who has never even been here before) punctuated with the occasional derby. i held my own in the derbies but never came away with a coveted victory, however i did manage to severely taco the wheel of the guy i took second to in one of the matches. as bad as i felt it seemed inevitable. saturday brought some trail time then a long night getting a wedding reception drunk so i missed that night's festivities. sunday i showed up for the scheduled gravel ride to realize (not surprisingly) the weekend had taken its toll on many and there would only be six of us headed to bluffton. trevor, marty, deke, jon-o, spinner and i headed out of town into some menacing clouds. soon it was dumping on us. the rain broke as we entered the bar, then restarted a couple hours later as we remounted our bikes ensuring that most of the ride out and back would be soggy. still a ton of fun. the dirt burger in general was successful in encouraging a fair amount of general jackassery. don't be surprised if this happens again. small is fun, bigger might be more, either way the results will most likely be similar.
on another note, i did get to attend larsson's second ever soccer game (i was unable to make the first). he's also now doing the luther soccer camp that julie helps run. seems he's well on his way to reaching his lifelong goals of someday being the goalie on her high school girls soccer team and then returning as her assistant coach.
and finally, it seems i am caving and will be moving to the darkside and finally joining the facebook community. here's my justification (really this is to make myself feel better but feel free to read)...i've had an account for like a year and a half because i had to register to view some pictures after a race i did. i never did anything with the account but occasionally people must have searched my name and found that i existed and asked me to be a friend. i've never accepted any since i'm not actually on there but i get these emails from time to time telling me of another request. after last weekend's reunion with my high school friends and a rash of friend requests from some people i've met through my racing, i figure the time has come. so...if you're one of those select few who have asked me to be a friend in the last year or so (i think there might be 2 or 3 that actually read this) you'll probably be getting an acceptance...finally. there's my justification...on to dirt burger pics.


spinner and trevor

deke and jon-o

this riding thing is hard work, good thing we got road beers before we left bluffton

fisty enjoying the high life as well

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


just a reminder that everyone and anyone is invited to come taste our trails this weekend. click here for a bigger view of the anti-race flyer.

Monday, June 15, 2009

fuck cancer

i don't even know what to say about it anymore. pretty sure everyone i'm related to either died of cancer or had it when they died or had it before they died. multiple experiences with it with my parents have left me scared and angry. a few days ago i found out a good friend is about to receive what was once referred to as a bone marrow transplant that will involve chemo to kill almost everything inside him and leaving him in the hospital for a minimum of a month with a 6 month recovery in the hopes of ridding him of lymphoma. today i was told that a daughter of a friend (who happens to be almost exactly the same age as larsson) is going into isolation for a minimum of four months as part of a chemotherapy treatment to attack the cancer she has been battling for some time. cancer is fucking evil.

mike and haven, you will be in my thoughts. to everyone else out there fighting this or who knows and cares for someone fighting this, i wish you the best.

back to reality

man...i have absolutely no idea how to sum up the past few days. it was difficult to know what to expect when you take a decent size group of really good friends, completely separated from for 10 years give or take, then throw them back together in a couple hotel rooms with a casino and a bunch of bars. it was a riot. its amazing how quickly you can get past or just skip the 10 years worth of catching up and just be back to hanging out. christ, i don't think most of us have ever even drank legally in davenport together. the entire weekend was a complete success...no one ended up in jail or the hospital. thursday night brought a good gravel ride before leaving decorah then a few beers in d-port, friday brought a solid solo ride at sunderbruch followed by whitey's, happy joe's, a tour through the village of east davenport bars, then downtown for a few more bars that included a seemingly never ending string of shots. highlight of friday night might be the street food vendors...or waking up with the floor of the hotel room covered in taco pizza toppings. saturday brought 11a.m. breakfast skillets at village inn, a very nostalgic trip to lindsay park and officially getting the entire gang back together. everybody met up for some beers, single malts and templeton in the hotel room before collectively heading over to the boat and teaching me how to play craps. quick grab a shuttle to a river bandits game for our bobble heads and a chance meeting with a young gentleman who closely resembles the comic book guy from the simpsons. back to the hotel for a drink before making our way to a restaurant far too classy for our group, but we were given a private room that resembled bruce wayne's library so we were fine. $450 later (a dinner bill quietly picked up by the chiropractor in the group) we were headed to a bar for a couple shots and some red bull before returning to the casino. little did we know that we were going to be treated to the most righteous death metal band to ever come out of bettendorf, iowa. holy god it was awful. pound our beers and head back to the casino. a few hours at the craps table with some of my best friends was perfect. iowa law dictated we had to stop drinking so we unleashed an all-out 2a.m. assault on the infamous magic mountains of ross's 24 hour diner. there was not a sober person in this diner and most cannot finish one of these heaping piles of french fries, meat and processed cheese. impressive was watching one in our group finish his in seemingly record time while a second ate the equivalent of 2 magic mountains while repeatedly passing out between bites and having to be woken up to continue eating. eventually pulled ourselves out of our cave and said our good byes on sunday with promises of not waiting another ten years to do this again. maybe a 2010 gathering in chicago? sunday also found time to meet up with adam and his brother in-law dan for a couple hours of trails. awesome to ride with them. and now...back to reality.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

getting the band back together

headed back to d-port this weekend for a reunion tour of the old stomping grounds. i'll be meeting up with a group of my closest friends from high school, most of whom i haven't seen or talked to in 10-15 years. sad, but that's how it is. this year will also be the first year of a new race at scott county park where i grew up camping with the fam. so i'll be heading down for four days of reminiscing, riding, minor league baseball bobble head nights, hotels, casinos, templeton rye, nba finals, stanley cup game 7 and most likely a fair amount of debauchery that hopefully doesn't end up with anyone getting a free ride downtown. a random facebook message a few months ago from julie to one of these guys led to a string of group emails and eventually the planning of a reunion. not bad planning from a group of guys spread as far as decorah, chicago, buffalo, ny and raleigh, nc. best case scenario is i might actually get to ride the new trails 4 times before i head home. rain and nightly activities may dictate a day less of that though.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

far from a wasted trip

headed down to des moines for a couple days this weekend with plans to get a solid amount of ride time in with adam. unfortunately those plans were washed away with the seemingly never ending rains. so, ride time was simply replaced with lots of quality family time. adam and i got some work done on his bike while larsson played with his cousin caden. then adam, heather, caden, larsson and i packed up and headed out to amy's to have dinner with her family. the cousins all played while the adults caught up a bit until a tornado touched down somewhere nearby and we all headed downstairs and watched the weather roll through. mondays replacement to riding 7 oaks was to take all the kids to the science center for some rocket building, fishing, snake watching, bubble chasing and lots of other cool stuff. all in all, the riding was a total bust but had an awesome weekend with the family.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

recovery ride?

left yesterday intending to do a long slow gravel ride after riding myself into the ground sunday. somehow that turned into my first ever sub-4 hour gravel metric. 62 miles and change up to harmony and back in something like 3 hours 58 minutes. weather was perfect, wind was mild, road conditions were fast, legs felt good...felt good to ride hard and have the body respond well.

big ring inspired evidence of the fastest i've ever gone on a gravel road. 43 mph going down coldwater creek hill just north of bluffton.

Monday, June 1, 2009

weekend of racing

congrats to brothers chris and adam for throwing doing their thing at the dam to dam. my knees cry a little just thinking about running that far.
dirty kanza went down this weekend as cornbread, steve, g-t and about 80 others attempted to battle heat and high winds leaving only 15 at the end. congrats to those who made it through as well as anyone willing to line up.
larsson did his thing racing around the base of afton alps.
i made my way up to the cities full well knowing i was about to get my ass kicked. afton as a race course has always beat me down and the pro/expert field did its number on me this year as well. i'm certainly learning to swallow my ego racing with these guys. afton has a murderous amount of climbing and i'm having to deal with the fact that my body is unfortunately fragile in the heat. first lap started out fast and i was riding somewhere in the top half of the field as i was able to climb the entire course. lap 2 of 4 brought that familiar feeling in my stomach and the mild dizzyness. a conscious decision was made to back off for fear of not finishing. started trying to get in fluids despite a stomach that wasn't terribly receptive. had to walk shady lane (1st of 2 big climbs each lap) and got some gu down. was able to continue muscling it around hairpins despite stubbornly not gearing down for this race. made it to manhandler and was quickly walking there as well. a whole line of geared guys passed me here...so it was. i was starting to feel a little better until the super stuttery downhill at the end ejected my full water bottle rather than my empty one. no more carborocket for me. stopped at the water station to refill my empty bottle and did lap 3 on cruise control. still only had to walk shady lane and manhandler and slowly the bottle started to recover. pretty happy i was able to read my body enough to know when to go into damage control mode and come out of it enough to feel like i was pushing a little harder again on lap 4. passed a few riders beat down by the heat and the course but still ended up in the slower half of the field. still learning. still somewhat accepting of where i fit into this field as of right now. far from complacent. don't know what my potential is but i'm far too competitive to accept mid-pack until i'm damn sure that's all the better i'll ever be. if so...its better than i ever thought i'd be. for now, its just another reason to keep busting my ass. oh, and the debilitating forearm cramps that left me unable to use my hands for almost 10 minutes following the race has left me certain that a suspension fork is well past due. physically i'm pretty trashed from this race but the next month should help with both my recovery and my fitness.

love the one-footed corner here...we were flying

larsson with a front row seat...my forearm cramps are excruciating

cheezin post-race