Sunday, September 23, 2007

A weekend of racing, college parties and more racing

Saturday was the Henleyville Road Race. Combined Pro/1/2/3. Flat 72 miles. Finished in the field...maybe somewhere in the mid-20's overall? (UPDATE: Results posted...17th) Two of our Elite Category 2's were there, JD and Kevin, and they both got into a chase group. JD got 6th and the Kevin was not far behind him.

RACING TIP: Try to find a college house party to crash the night before your next race...It works. Today, Ben and I were both powered by Coors Light, Jager and Rumplemintz. We were out very late and it was a rough start this morning. I say that's a racing tip because I raced some of my best races ever today. I've had better results, but today I raced very aggressive and felt extremely strong.

Today's race highlights - Downtown Chico Criterium:
Elite Category 3
- Got in a 2-man break. Caught.
- Went out for about 4 solo laps. Won cash prime. Caught.
- 8th in the sprint finish.

Masters 35+ 3/4 (ha...35+??)
- 2-man break. Split prime with him. Caught.
- 12th out of the 3's.
- Ben got in the winning break and got 3rd place for the 4's.

This is just a quick recap with my highlights, but my teammates all raced great races. We all raced very aggressive and pulled in many top 10's across all categories for the weekend. It was a great way to tie up the season. I'm going to slow down on the training for a while now and focus on living off of the bike, of course, with a few occasional rides here and there. Should be fun.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Interbike 2007

No, I was not at Interbike 2006 with Cipo, LeMond, Overend, Merckx, Hushovd and Roll, but I will be there this year!

Interbike is one event that I've dreamed of going to for years now. My position at Active Athlete Media has finally given me reason to attend the event and meet with some of the top industry leaders and I'm stoked.

I'll definitely be walking the expo area, as well as the Cross Vegas and the USA Crit Finals. I'm still trying to score a way into the Sinclair Party (That also reads as "if you are reading this and can get me in you will be my best friend.")

Some Pics from the Mt. Tam Hill Climb

As always, click the pic for large format...the last one is amazing. (Not 'tooting my own horn', I didn't snap that one)

Eric and I - pre-race

Synchronized cycling - post-race

Me, Eric and Anthony - post-race (salty)

Stinson Beach - facing North

Facing South

Monday, September 17, 2007

Race - Rides - Oktoberfest - Sunsets

Raced the Mt. Tam Hill Climb on Saturday. I thought I'd do better, but there's always next year. Some of my Squadra Ovest teammates met up at the top of the climb for a post-race-ride. Eric and I joined and ended up having a huge day of about 90 miles and a lot of race-pace climbing (crawled home on Highway 1):

Sunday morning, we woke up a bit groggy due to the night in the marina. Met up with Phil and Vince for a nice stomp up Marion to East Peak, down to Stinson Beach and back home on Highway 1 again:

Enough riding.

We (Eric, me and one of my roommates, Gosia) met up with Anthony, Shana and Christine to head back up to Marin. The "Tourist Club" is a German Pub in the woods. You have to hike a decent distance to find it and they were having an Oktoberfest Party there on Sunday. Lederhosen, beer, pretzels, brats, amazing views and dense forest...what else could you ask for?

After a few German liquids, we dropped down to Stinson Beach, picked up some snacks and checked out the Sunset over the Pacific. It was amazing.

Photos from Oktoberfest and Stinson Beach: Click Here

Friday, September 14, 2007

Almost "GO TIME"

Tomorrow morning is big...time to see what 5 months of hill training can do to a sprinter from the flatland of Chicago. First 4 miles are small rollers (flat), then it gets "fun".Eric (Team Get a Grip Cycles) is flying out tonight for this. My homeboys, Phil (Cal-Giant) and Anthony (Altezza 40) are possible racers and one of my new Kovarus / Squadra Ovest teammates, Mark, is racing the 35+. Should be a great race, with a great ride tacked onto the tail end (up to Point Reyes...maybe Tomales Bay and back).

Monday, September 10, 2007


After work tonight, I rode with my buddy Anthony and on the way back the sun was setting over the headlands. The site was amazing. Before this picture was taken, the sun was blocked by the headlands and there was just a glow that outlined the hills. By the time we got the phone out to goof around with some pictures the sun was in the direct line of sight, but the pictures still turned out pretty cool.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Cable Car 101

I live really close to the Cable Car Museum and it only took me 5 months to visit. This morning I was getting some work done and downing lattes at the Gallery Cafe. As soon as my laptop battery died the museum sang it's siren song and I strolled across the street to finally take a look.

There are 4 really, really, really, ridiculously long cables that run under the streets in SF (and travel at 9.5mph). These (above pic) are the wheels (sheaves) that power the cables. The Hyde St. cable is off to the right of the picture. Each cable gets 3 sheaves to run through. The close two turn opposite each other routing the cable in a figure 8 and the 3rd sheave is about 100 feet away (top of pic). It's a pretty cool system...the figure 8 makes the cable touch 3/4 of the sheaves surface which creates the necessary friction and the 3rd sheave is mobile because the cables stretch as much as 100 feet before throughout their lifetime.

They even have a lower level (below the street) where you can see the cables entering and exiting the museum. It was really cool to see the angles of the sheaves that allows the cables to route around underneath the city streets. I tried to take a picture here too, but it was dark and the flash glared too much against the glass.

That's my cable car lesson for you. I could get into the whole gripping of the cable, but I don't want to spoil the entire museum for you. (yeah, there's not too much to it).

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Catching up...

It's been a while since I've posted, so here's a quick recap of what's up.

Active Athlete had our first company off-site meeting/retreat. We had this up near Lake Tahoe at Squaw Valley. It was amazing and very productive. It was great to meet some of my co-workers from other cities that, until now, I only had imaginary images of them...I was pretty close. The picture above is from the top of the mountain at about 8,200 ft, you can see Lake Tahoe over the first ridge - it was a full moon that night and was beautiful. Our days were jam-packed with meetings and the schedule also contained plenty of fun...from morning hikes to a pretty intense high ropes course. I really enjoyed the ropes course...there were three structures about 50 feet high and they were connected with various rope bridges. We paired up into groups of 3 (climber, belayer & back-up belayer). I don't have any pics of this yet, but I'll add them in as I receive them from co-workers (this pic was found on the web, but it is the Squaw Valley Ropes Course.) Seeing the slopes up there got me very charged up for this winter! I used to only be able to drive to Wisconsin and would hop on a plane to get to anything real...Tahoe is only about a 4 hour drive (barring no snowstorms on the way).

I was back home over Labor Day weekend. I'll be vague on this public blog, but I was home for a funeral. It's very hard to lose a loved one. Funerals bring many smiles as family really pulls together and it was amazing to see how many people were touched and loved by one person. It's strange and unfortunate that sometimes events like this are the rare occasions that families get together.

My sister is a bonified "yogi"...her move from Chicago to Seattle has treated her well. I've always been interested in yoga, but have never actually done more than attempt a yoga DVD. My other sister, my niece and I joined Gina for a Bikram Yoga class (hot yoga) while we were all in town. 90 minutes of contortionist-like moves in 104 degree heat (why 104 and not 105 beats me, but that's what they said) with high humidity. I've never sweat so much in my life. I did enjoy it though and will probably try harder to incorporate yoga into my training regimen...probably just regular yoga though (I moved out of the Midwest heat and humidity for a reason).
I've been off of the bike for quite a while now due to the company trip and the time I spent back in Chicago. I was able to get out for a great ride today with a great group of 5 buddies. I've been on Highway 1 a number of times, but not since Eric was out to visit. Highway 1 is an amazing ride. We went up to the 4-corners and then descended through Muir Woods to get to Hwy 1...from there we did some high tempo north to Stinson Beach and then doubled back to climb Panoramic (I think I saw a storm trooper in the woods) back up to Pan Toll. We ended the ride at Pancho's for some post ride burritos.