Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Bike more, Blog less

It's great to see how in the last few weeks the buzz of activity on cyclists blogs is really starting to pick up. I, for one, was all about reading, ....but seriously lagged on doing any posting myself. So thanks to all of you on the links sections (and links through those sites) for some entertaining and enjoyable reads.
As much as I'd like the potential hours one could sink into posting to help on race day I figured it was best to rely on good old reliable time in the saddle to assist in that department. And I think it's fair to say I've had one heck of a decent spring training. Got in a good amount of time on the bike with alot of regularity. Managed to work through each increasing level of intensity in the intervals as the weeks progressed. That gives alot of confidence going into race day.
As it's said, you maybe can't guarantee success but if you properly prepare you greatly increase your odds. While failure takes little or no effort to ensure.
I think wherever you are in life you need challenges, it's instrumental in helping you grow and gives purpose and direction. Whether it's being a better at your job, business or school; whether it's being a better parent or spouse or learning a new skill or taking up a new hobby or interest. Where you find people with a meaningful challenges you find a healthier, happier person.

Do you ever sit back and ask yourself what's so damn interesting about riding or racing a bike? For me, part of it's being a speed freak, it's the most amazing thing that a bike will carry you about fast as any human powered device is able to and yet you still have the opportunity to have occassion lucid conversations while racing. You can't go that fast swimming or running and have you ever been able to have even a partial conversation in doing one of those races? I don't suppose so.

With a few 5 days to go before the first MTB race of the year its fun to play around with prognostications & comments. If you're in the loop of midwestern mtb racing the names and comments should make sense. If not check out the links and it'll help.
--Mike Phillips, the iron lung, out of southern WI busts up the WORS racing stranglehold Lalondes & Matter have had on the Elite level of racing.... at least for the first 2 months of the season.
--Doug Swanson comes over to WORS races once in awhile and equally puts more hurt into an already amazingly fast field of racers. My personal wish is to see him do some MNSCS races as well to see how things would shake out against the likes of Brendan Moore, the Oftedahl bro's, Chris Fischer and someone else I'm forgeting... oh yea, Paul Hanson.
--But as always I think a favorite of many and certainly mine is the quiet and composed Jeff Hall, when he is on his game and the trail is terrible Jeff just cranks it out and nobody for 500 miles around is going to catch him. When you just barely miss out on the Olympic team long list it sorta says something about you. Just check out his almost 10min victory in '07 at Duluth's Spirit Mt Powder Monkey race against the abovementioned racers.
--Ok, so there's the talk of who's been A list racers for a good amount of time, it's the new ones that take some time for people to know, take Jesrin Gaier, new regional Racer for Trek. You can't estimate how much fire burns in that guy's guts, simply because he too is so quiet and unassuming, but if I underestimate anyone's ability to pull off some upsets this year it will be him.
--Yours truly, pulls off a money position in at least one of the Elite WORS races this year. (Note: Dear God, I hope there are alot of "out full racing condition" racers in one of these first events).
--The Cable Off Road Classic will be norm and not exception for it's weather this year. Race day conditions will present a beautiful sunny day.
--Paul Belknap or Kelly McKnight team up with me on a tandem bike at the Bay Days Off Road race to over take Scott Chapin in the last sloping downhill mile to win the prestigious event (and ensure that Scott buys us beers afterwards).
--Ooooh, and now my bold pick of the year.....The Chequamegon this year isn't won by a single speed or a 29er. (My recourse on that prediction is that perhaps I'm talking about the women's champion :) for '08.)

I'm certainly missing plenty of other comments I'd like to share, but that's for another day.

Please remember this year if I'm racing against you, please overtrain & burnout, and if you don't do that spend more time blogging than biking. At the finish line I'll appreciate it.

Til the next time, blog more bike less,

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Grizzly Times......

You know how there are the moments in life where alittle delay here, an interruption there comes as a blessing. Well, when it comes to crossing paths with a beast such as this, is especially true.

Drilling it down the nearby White River hill on Friday only to have the good fortune of meeting good ole’ Yogi crossing the highway a few short meters in front of me while coming up the other side. Guess time for hibernation is over (& Charlie Farrow can finally stop his long winters nap & get down to business).

Next time though, I’d prefer it was this Ursus americanus - instead.
You know it'd be great. I could pull over, take a break. He’d likely be carrying a jar of honey. We could have a nice visit and a snack. It’d make for a great little mid-ride break and be sure to stave off any bonks on the road ahead.