Saturday, April 21, 2012

Killing time . . .

It's Parents Weekend at school so rather than prepping to race XC today at Sea Otter, I'm in teacher mode and meeting with lots and lots of parents. Would have enjoyed doing a big loop, as opposed to the racetrack, but it's been a really good PW. I've learned that my reputation as the hardest teacher is well intact, and that, better yet, my students respect me for it. In about 25 minutes I'm off to hear read aloud the winning pieces of the Writing Contest and I'm really excited because they are stunning and the kids who wrote them are going to be really, really proud. After working so hard, often without as much reward as they deserve, it's fun to stop and celebrate the fruit of their labors.
This is what teacher mode looks like.                      

See? I felt good.
 Training has gone super well lately. I did another 50 mile effort last weekend in prep for the Whiskey 50 and felt waaaaaay better than I did during the previous 50 miler. I hit my numbers and didn't feel like I wanted to crawl into a hole and die. Always a plus. Also worked on eating more solids and that made a big difference in terms of energy level, and I got a chance to practice throwing a tube into tubeless tires after I sliced my sidewall. Fun with Stans No Tubes juice. Nice. It had rained a bunch the days before and there was even snow on the mountains.

Yep, snow in SB.

Super stoked about the Whiskey 50 next weekend. Definitely an intimidating slate of women: All kinds of events are scheduled including a crit on mountain bikes in downtown Prescott. Hmmm.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Often get props for fitting two bikes in the Honda Fit. Super aero-dynamic.
Photo courtesy of J. Caditz :)
After a 4am wake up call, drove north Saturday morning to collect my bike and race in Monterey. Was pleased to feel as soon as I got on my bike, that everything felt, quite simply, better. Thank you, K, for the re-build!!!) Knew turnout at the race was likely to be low as it's a mellow local series, and I was right. Lined up with 4 ladies and ended up with 2nd, by about a minute. As I was solo Saturday, had no one to tell me where first was, and I think that might have been the umph I needed to at least give Niner's Katelyn Hill a run for her money, but c'est la vie. She's a super fast chick! Was really pleased with how my body felt. Wasn't sure what to expect after last Sunday's effort and the number it did on my always-unhappy right SI joint, but only had one day of intervals this week and a couple of light spins--plus two trips to my most amazing physical therapist and some fun with Kinesio tape--so was ready to rock. The course was fun--5 laps on a loop made up of about 15 minutes of climbing and 5 of descent. The first lap was painful as it included a very steep asphalt climb that was thankfully traded for some fun singletrack for the rest of the laps (and a 35 minute delay of the start to get an injured Cat 3 racer off course pretty much cancelled out my warm-up). But laps 2 and 3 I found my groove and was putting out some good watts, on 4 I lightened up just a bit as I could feel my legs tiring, and lap 5 I just put my head down and kept the pedals turning. Ended the day with  $40 bucks and a new friend. Not too shabby.

Monday, April 2, 2012

View from just below the top.
Sunday was a spectacular day for a ride. Rain Saturday afternoon made for really clear skies. Could see all the breaks between Santa Barbara and Ventura, and even from 4,000+ feet it was obvious the waves were thumping. On tap was a race pace 50 miler, and better yet, my most favoritest riding partner, my dad, was down south to join me!
Same view, but this time with my dad.
Training the last couple of weeks has been high intensity intervals on the mountain bike up Romero Canyon during the week, Thursday morning group ride, Saturday big long 5+ hour ride, Sunday 4+ hour recovery ride. But due to some other commitments on Saturday, I did the intervals Tuesday and Wednesday, and though I was supposed to do an hour spin on Thursday to save something for the 50 miler, I did the group ride Thursday, and a couple hour spin Saturday in prep for Sunday's 50 miler. Maybe not the best move as I could tell as soon as we hit the first climb on Sunday that my climbing legs were T-I-R-E-D.  By the 1.5 hour mark I was at IF .9 and thinking, Holy crap, we have 35 miles to go!? And, admittedly, I may have even shed a tear or two as we climbed and climbed and climbed . . and climbed. The crazy strong gusts of wind didn't help morale much either. They literally stopped me in my tracks a time or two and felt like they were fresh off a glacier. But, eventually, we topped out for the first time, and the new-to-us downhill was sweet!

I started to feel more human as we took the rolling single track back to the bottom of the climb. I even cleared all the technical stuff in a section I hadn't managed to before. Headed back up Romero I felt strong and managed to feel that way almost to the top. But by the time we turned around for the descent, I was cooked. Ended up with 46.5 miles and 9,000 feet of climbing.

Now my mountain bike is up north in the talented hands of K of Urgent Bicycle getting rebuilt in time for this Saturday's race in Monterey.