Mar 26, 2008

Italian is fun to listen to


Mar 25, 2008

Spring break is over. I didn't do much exciting, just basic stuff. Bought a Costco membership, built a wheel, repaired a bed, cleaned my apartment, did some homework, road my bike with Tboughts, etc. Today I had a really good set of intervals. 4x10min and my HR was pegged in the 180s the whole time. I do workouts day after day and usually I'm just getting through them, but days like today something clicks and I'm able to kick it up a notch (Scottie would say 'take it to the next level'). I wish I could figure out how to get to this level all the time or at least more often.

In other news, I'm nearly finished figuring out Sapim's web of distribution. You would think that if you wanted a product, you'd call of the American division of said company and have them ship the product to your shop. Not so with Sapim, they have no American division. Instead, they distribute through the 'agents' Cane Creek and KHS bicycle parts. Since Cane Creek is getting out of the wheel business, that leaves most of the onus on KHS (not to be confused with KHS Bicycles who, as far as I know, are in no way affiliated with KHS bicycle products). KHS is a Scandinavian (my best guess is Norwegien) company which acts as a middle man between smaller Euro suppliers and the North American market. Now, say you want Sapim spokes, but don't want to deal with your local bike shop. Easy as finding the spokes on a huge online retailer Performance or Nashbar, right? Wrong. Most online retailers are actually small bike shops who don't have a large stock, except for Thor USA. Thor USA happens to carry the same brands as KHS bicycle products and list the same mailing address and if you call you will speak with the exact same Scandinavian-accented operators. Not that there is any affiliation listed by either company.

Confused? So am I... But at least I now know a dozen different ways to get some sweet spokes.

Mar 15, 2008

A good day

Friday was one of those days in which I thought I'd feel lucky to make it out alive. Turns out it went really well.

It started at 7, after working 'til 1 the night before. First thing in the morning, I had a presentation to give my research group. It ended up going pretty well. I had a few holes I need to fix, but thats the point of the small group presentations, to find out what you're doing right and wrong.

Next up, first Tribology midterm of the semester. I was pretty convinced I wasn't prepared, since I spent too much time preparing for the presentation. Well, turns out I got lucky. Just about everything I studied ended up on the test and nothing I hadn't studied. I flew through it and ended up with an extra half hour at the end. I walked outside and the sun was out and the weather had warmed up. Perfect weather for some biking.

3x 15 min MSP. Basically doing three 5 mile TTs back to back to back. On the first one I went out to fast and overcooked it. On the second too slow, but the third went off perfect. I was breathing hard, but never needed to slow and was able to hold 22 pretty easily through the rolling hills of Old Field. A quick cool down by the beach and I was done.

As a bonus, Tboughts and I got some SalsaSalsa and saw Before the Devil Knows You're Dead which was really good, much better than I expected.

Alright, melodramatic post over. Thanks for reading.

Mar 13, 2008

MSP phase

So in the interest of being more transparent with my training, I thought I'd post this months training. So like I've said before, I follow a modified Morris schedule. I didn't do weights and did a base period instead. Now I'm switching the MSP and sprint phases, since I like sprinting better.

The schedule looks a little confusing, but I've set it up mostly to fit my schedule. I find I follow a plan a lot better if I'm realistic about what I can do on each day, not the exact order a book sez I should be using (even then, I'm lucky if I do 75% of what I plan). Some people don't like planning every day, they feel like it becomes work, but I find it gives me a sense of control and reduces my anxiety about training. Even so, I've already missed my thursday workout and hoping I can squeeze it in friday.

Mar 12, 2008

Black Hills o PAIN

This was one of the first rides I did in the black hills on a road bike. It was back in the fall of '05 with Doug and Fred (mean age: 61.5). At the beginning, I thought '50-60 miles with a couple of old dudes, no problem!' (well, not no problem, but I should be in too much trouble). Anyway, turns out those old dudes really put the hurt on me. I was fine until around mile 45 when we climbed up Mount Rushmore. Its about a mile and a half with an average grade of 9.5%. I was in my littlest gear pushing 60 rpms. When we got to the top I had some cereal at the snack bar (while Fred had the biggest bowl of ice cream you'd ever seen), but I still couldn't recover enough. They kicked butt while I dragged by ass the 10 miles back to the car. Its a great route though, Iron Mountain Road is my favorite.

MapMyRide puts the total climbing at 4500 feet.

Mar 10, 2008

My favorite holiday

Christmas? no. Easter? no. Thanksgiving? close, but no. My favorite holiday every year is the first day of Daylights Savings Time (OK maybe its not a real holiday, but I celebrate it anyway). I love when its light out past dinner time, it feels like spring is already here. Two years ago, congress was nice enough to move my favorite holiday almost a month forward, so now I get even more sun. You see, I'm not really a morning person, so whether or not there is sunlight before 7 am is of little consequence to me (unless there is the promise of some really awesome biking, then maybe I'll be awake).

Everyone around here has already started racing and I'm wondering why. First of all, its just too early. I've been training for less than two months this year and unless you started putting in base miles back in September, there no way you're in peak form yet. Also, early races like this inevitably mean you're up before daylight (see paragraph 1) and racing when temps are in the 30's, and there's something unappealing about racing in tights and a windbreaker. My second question is about the races themselves. Everyone who does these Central Park races in March tells stories of shoving, rubbing and crashing. Now, maybe these gladiators of the tarmac are just trying to sound rugged, but crashing isn't appealing to me at all. I'll save myself for races where I'm likely to stay upright, thanks.

Mar 7, 2008


Fifty years ago, the biggest nutritional problem was famine and hunger, now its obiesity.

Its almost spring, get out and ride your bike.

I did, got a good ride in this morning, then came back home and had a nice nutritional meal to aid in recovery.

I should practice what I preach (re: line 1)

Mar 6, 2008

New Team

Or is that club? I can't tell anymore.

Anywho, I'll be racing in the Royal Blue and Orange of the East End Cycling Team, the Kreb Cycle club. I'll miss suiting up in the Flanders kit, but the logistics of racing for them weren't going to work out. The EECT seems alright, plus just about everyone in Suffolk county rides for them so I should always have a teammate at a race.

Mar 4, 2008

Best. Week. Ever.


Monday- Recovery Ride
Tuesday- 2 Hrs, 35 Miles, 50 minutes Tempo (tempo is riding a continuous pace slightly below your anaerobic threshold)
Wednesday- 3+ Hrs, 55 Miles, 60 minutes Tempo
Thursday- More Recovery Riding
Friday- 1.5 Hrs, 35 Miles, 70 minutes Tempo
Saturday- 4+ Hrs, 70 Miles with Tboughts
Sunday- 6 Hrs, 100 Miles, 60 of them being crushed on the Early Bird ride.

So thats a total of almost 300 miles and over 18 hours on the bike in whats probably the most biking I've done in one week. It was a perfect storm of circumstances that allowed it and I probably won't spend this much time biking again this year. I got lucky this year and for the first time ever classes, weather and everything cooperated so that I was able to get in a full period of base training. I rode over 1000 miles before February was over. I hope it helps in June.

This week is a recovery week, then next week I start MSP intervals. Mmmmmm... intervals.