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Cream Puff!!!!  Wow!  Everyone told us it would be awesome….and it was.  Jen and I duked it out the entire day and she finally dropped me on the last climb.  16,000 feet of climbing.  That’s as much climbing as the Gila road stage race….5 days. 

Free camping.  Free food.  Free showers.  Lots of awesome food in the feed zones.  One feed zone even had a hose running out of a spring.  I have no idea what place I got….maybe top 30.  Jen was the second female and she really did a great job climbing. 

My goal…finish without of cramping.  Jen’s goal….finish without throwing up.  Mission accomplished.  Sub-12 hour.  Winner was just under 10 hours.

Here’s some pics from a couple of the awesome sections of trails.

I almost took my camera with me for the race, but I probably wouldn’t have made the cut-off time.

Next stop….Whistler.

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We finally made it out of El Paso and hooked up with the Cochiti 100…..which turned out to be a 70 something miler.  We got up there about noon and the guys were finishing up their first loop.  I think they started way too late.  We took off on the second loop around the tent rocks and went out again to try to find some single track out that way.  We ended up with 56 miles. 

Then it was off to Durango and Cortez.  It took us less than an hour in Durango to run into someone we knew and later in our ride we ran into Myles Rockwell….who looked scary fit. 

We got a sick ride in around the Salt Lake/Bountiful foothills and around the North Canyon/Mueller Park trails.

Then it was up to the IMBA Summit in Park City.  What a blast.  I learned so much and took about 18 pages of notes.  I can’t wait for our next club meeting.  Every afternoon included insanely fun rides on some of the 400 miles of single track around the town.

We are now up in Idaho and headed to Oregon.  Stay tuned.

Pray that no creature ever chews through the main wiring harness of your vehicle.  Especially if it’s a newer vehicle.  Yes….I’m still waiting on our truck to get fixed.  As you can see from the pic below, there were quite a few wires in that harness.  I probably could have reconnected them all myself, but it’s 100+ outside.  I was also hoping that my dealer would be willing to find a harness from a salvage yard, but they wouldn’t go for that.  So instead of paying $1900 for a new harness and waiting for about a month to get it, I let them repair it.

Turns out that when everything was chewed up, a bunch of fuses blew.  Then, when I tried to start it, I blew more fuses and reprogrammed the main computer as well as burned out the neutral safety switch.  Not good.  So we are still waiting.  Friday.  Still waiting.

I guess that’s the downside to electronics.  While they help our lives in so many ways, they can leave you in a pickle when they get messed up.  As a former electronics guy in the military, I learned enough to do quite a bit with electronic hardware stuff.  If I had an airconditioned garage, I would have been able to fix the wiring harness.  I would not have been able to reprogram the computer or find out what other funky codes may been showing up on a diagnostic system. 

Speaking of electronics….seems I’ve put some people up in arms about my comments regarding power meter screenshots.  I really wanted to focus more on people’s subtle cries for help that they post on their blogs.  If you aren’t racing well, and you are having dietery problems, or you are overtraining, or you are trying to mix up too much intensity when you are focusing on endurance events, or you think you are overtrained but you are really undertrained…..and you have a coach, it’s probably in your best interest to keep it on the downlow.  It’s definitely not going to help your coach any by telling people you are dead tired and can’t turn the pedals over. 

These cries for help are not entertaining.  Jen tells me to never comment.  “Let them flounder,” she says.  Hell.  We did our share of floundering that’s for sure.  But we never paid anyone to tell us what to do either.

I guess it takes time to find yourself, your limits, your favorite foods, your favorite bike position, and whatever else makes you fast.  Hopefully you will do your best to have fun.  Losing is not fun.  Not achieving your goals is not fun. 

I’m not sorry if I insulted anyone.  I do hope that my comments help you realize just how petty competition is.  Our world is changing quite rapidly now.  Racing will soon be only for the really wealthy or the ones that know the really wealthy.  Those days of loading up the VW bus with a couple friends, a bag of weed, enough energy bars for the weekend, and just enough money to cover gas and race entry are long gone.  The lowest payout isn’t going to get you back home.  The highest may only get you halfway home or to the next race.  Free underground racing will take over, but there will not be any $$$ involved.

Soon (and I mean in a few years) we will ALL be commuting regularly by bicycle.  It’s going to be tough.  I’m keeping my fingers crossed for all of us.

 

Ever since I started keeping my blog, my wife and I have been checking out other people’s blogs….quite regularly.  It’s kind of frustrating.  Most are aspiring racer types.  Big Jonny started it all, but he’s toned it down a bit, allowed others to contribute, and he removed all the porn (that stuff was all the same anyway).  He’s even got O’Grady and  Gred Randolph posting up every now and then.  But then everyone started doing the blog thing.  Including me.

What’s the funnest part about reading other peoples’ blogs?…..the amazement of how willing most are to tell how little they know about trying to be a successful athlete…Example.  Or….they give the longest explanation of why they suffered in a recent event when the true reason was a 4 or 5 word sentence…Example.  I won’t even go there when it comes to all those who give detailed descriptions of all the overtraining they do…or incorrect training….then question why they aren’t performing well when they’ve written the exact reason in their blog post.

The power heads are really cracking me up.  I’ve got a whole list of those guys…you know…the ones that post up all their workouts and vertical and rpms and power output and # of sips of cytomax and bites of energy bars and amount of recovery drinks. 

  1. Dave Harris and Linda Wallenfells (they haven’t been as fervent about posting screen shots of power outputs lately, but it was annoying for a while)
  2. Jeff Kerkove
  3. Not sure who this guy is…but at least he admits to being boring
  4. I should probably rank this one #1
  5. And another

I won’t keep going with that one.  Whew.  Too many to check out.  Do a google search for “powertap data blog postings”.  You’ll be busy for sure.

One of my favorite picture themes is the “on bike cockpit” photo theme.  These crack me up as I think everyone is either trying to pimp their computer sponsor or they want to show that they can ride one handed, maintain the threshold HR, and operate a digicam at the same time.  Example 1, 2, 3

I must admit it though, most of these guys and gals have great blogs.  Their pics are awesome and they look like they are having a great time…even though they may be suffering through all the races.  I’m sure the ones I haven’t met are really cool people….as the ones I have met are down right awesome.  Positive attitudes abound and they truly love mountain biking.

So I’ll spare you the #’s with a clean cockpit pick of the 9 year old road bike that has won way more cash than the $1600 it cost me.

I’ll share the sequential photos of this morning’s ride, but I’ll spare you the hippie band lyrics.

Yes.  It’s totally lame.  But I’m too busy pinning it, eating, and railing the descents to be stopping to take photos all the time on my mountain bike rides. 

Oh.  I almost forgot.  I need to have the obligatory bling bike picture as well.

The girl has won enough money on her old piece of crap Schwinn to pay for the it and this new one.  She’ll keep this one much longer I’m sure.

Dicky, this post was dedicated to you.  Keep up the good work.

This weekend was hot as balls and after wakening at 5 am, getting in a shorter ride, and doing a bunch of packing, I went to move the truck so I could change the oil.  Well….it didn’t want to start.  Not only did it not want to start, a warning light came on saying my tranny was overheated.  How could that be.  It hadn’t been run in over 2 weeks.  Wait a second.  My dog had been under it for almost an entire day trying to catch a squirrel that had crawled up into the engine bay.  Maybe she had disconnected a wire or something.

Or something….

The tow truck is on the way.  Hopefully this won’t cost too much.  And hopefully it is finished by Wed.  I’ve got to meet my father in Gallup Wed nite. 

I got checked out from school today.  Kind of a bummer.  My students really let me down for the final exam.  I gave them an answer sheet with all the q’s.  Did they bring it?  No.  What’s wrong with kids these days.

They think I’m crazy!  I guess getting up before dawn to go ride a bike on trails that provide frequent encounters with these little beauties is kind of crazy.

This was a little one….about 3 and half feet long.  Western Diamondback.  Jen passed if first and I heard it before I got too close.  It only rattled once and it didn’t seem too pissed off like most westerns we’ve encountered in the past.

I’m glad to be headed to cooler climes. 

It’s been a long time since I’ve taken a night ride.  It’s mainly because the lights I own are all about 10 years old.  They suck, they are heavy, their burn times are unpredictable, and I just got tired of dealing with them. 

Last week I figured I’d better get some new lights as we are going to be doing lots of ridiculously long rides that may either start way before the sun comes up or finish after the sun goes down.  I found a sweet deal on the Princeton Tech lights and bought two sets of the Switchback 2’s.  They aren’t the brightest, but they get good reviews and they have all the accessories including a car charger.  Princeton Tech is most famous for making deep water dive lights.  People’s lives depend on those things, so I figured the quality would be evident…and it is.  Solid wiring connections, heavy duty cables, big buttons, and sweet enclosures for the bulbs.  The battery is pretty light and the burn time is long.

I woke up (naturally – no alarm) at 3:45 am and was on the bike in less than 10 minutes.  I rode the trails behind the house for an hour before breakfast, then it was on to a big day on the trails with Jen.  On the way up the climb I saw what looked like reflective signs, but I knew there were no signs up there.  Finally they moved.  There were 3 mule deer and they were big.  Their eyes reflect brighter than any animal eyes I’ve ever seen…and I used to shine deer in South Carolina with one of those big ass police spotlights.  Little white tail don’t have anything on mulies.  I also 2 fox, one of which I got a decent pic of with my phone. 

This guy sat there staring at me for about 5 minutes then finally got up and walked TOWARD me.  He looked at me and steered clear as he walked past.  Trippy. 

School’s out!  Summer of Fun IV has officially begun.  We’ll be on the road June 11!

Presidency has it’s priviledges.  And being in the right place at the right time helps too.  I’ll be in between the Kaibab and the Cream Puff hanging with friends and the mo-in-law in Salt Lake City from about June 17 to the 24th.  That puts me about 30 miles away from the IMBA Summit in Park City on the 18th-21st.  With a $415 registration fee, I was skeptical about the club paying for it.  But it’s a bargain considering I’m already up there and I’m willing to take care of my other expenses.  So I’ll be learning all about how to help improve mountain biking in El Paso while ripping some buff singletrack.  I may even take the lift chair a few times!

 

While most mountain bike racers have been racing their brains out for the last month or so, I’ve been scrambling to finish the school year and ride as much as possible on the weekends.  Yes, I’ve become a weekend warrior, but not any less than I have been for the past 7 or 8 years.

With one week of classes left, I’m getting really excited!  A bunch of double bladder rides in the 100 degree heat…I’m ready for some super long races.  Since Cream Puff isn’t until the end of the month, I think I’ll try to complete my longest ride ever with this….the Kaibab Monstercross.  Jen wants to finish this thing too, so I’m going to ride her pace and push her to her limits.  I figure if I were to kill it all day for 130+ miles, two weeks may not be enough time to rest up for the Puff.  Plus I want to get some good rides in around Salt Lake and I’ll be attending the IMBA Summit in Park City.

Stay tuned for updates on “Summer of Fun…4”.