Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Training for 184.5

So I tackled the first serious training ride of the season.  I'm trianing to ride the full distance of the C&O Towpath from Cumberland, Maryland to Georgetown in Washington, DC in one day.

This weekend I put 60 miles in on hard packed rock dust.  The surface was roughly similar to what I'll see on the C&O - smooth but not paved.  We had some light tree cover out there and chilly but warming weather.

I took a few things from the ride.
  1. Not ready yet to do that 3 times in a row.
  2. My ass needs more time in the saddle.  South of 5 hours in the saddle was a little tough on the rear.  Need to harden it up
  3. and I need to condition myself more.  and maybe most importantly.
  4. I think I can do 184, but its not going to be a cake walk.
NCR 004Those of you that read regularly will remember Ben from the last post who chewed everyone up at the Baltimore CX race.  I rode with Ben this weekend and he put some serious hurt on me.  I did ok on the first 20 but somewhere around mile 28 my legs really started screaming.  The pain lasted through around mile 40 and then a light came on (and the path got faster) and I was feeling pretty good.  I didn't roll into the parking lot doing 20 mph or anything but I did feel better at the end of the ride than I did at the lunch stop.   Ben though looked awesome all throughout.  Guy's a monster on a bike and the nicest guy in the world. 

Surprisingly there was a fair bit of climbing during the ride, which I don't expect we'll encounter on the C&O.   All in all I feel good about how I did and I am pleased that my legs aren't scream at me a day later.

70 miles in two weeks.   Map and elevation chart below. 

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Baltimore CX Race

Its a bit late and I'm not really up for posting too much but I just did the data dump from my Garmin, so I thought I would put some stuff from last week's Baltimore CX Stage Race up on the blog.  For those of you who were not there it was a balst.  roving impromptu multi stage cyclocross race zooming through 5 different courses in an industrial site in Canton, Riverside Park in South Baltimore, Federal Hill, Wyman Park and Patterson Park.  It was a blast and we had a great group of folks from the Baltimore and Washington 'cross scene's racing.

Results wise the long and short is that Ben Bassett of the shop opened up a huge can of hurt on the field.   Jim organized a great race and made it a ton of fun for folks.  I think there is something to be said for swinging by Home Depot, getting some construction marker flags and setting up our own cross courses on the fly.  A local guerilla 'cross crew would be a great way to keep the season running. 

Anyway, below is the slide show of photos and the map of our tour.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Jim V. Still Awesome After All These Years!

In spite of Jake having some variation of a sinus infection, we still have had a pretty awesome weekend with a bunch of Dad/Dude bonding. Jim V is responsible for a good portion of it. For those of you who don't know Jim V. he's 110% awesome. How is he awesome you might ask. Well certainly there are many reason's Jim V. is awesome but this particularly instance of awesomeness centers around Jim V.'s generosity.

As some of you may have seen, Jake is very into biking. He did a 'cross race last year and had alot of fun and is looking to do a good bit more mountain biking. Unfortunately the bike he was riding was getting way too small (actually its probably more accurate to say Jake was getting bigger - fairly confident that the bike has remained the same size.) - so small in fact that it was becoming uncomfortable to ride. I had mentioned this to Jim and asking him to keep an eye out for any deals at the shop. Jim did a huge one better than that.

Jim gave Jake a long-term loan of a really great single speed mountain bike. He provided the frame, the wheelset, fork,handlebars and everything. We only had to pick up a few minor odds and ends here and there to make it trail ready, but thanks to Jim Jake was hooked up with a really great bike that he's going to have a ton of fun riding. Jim was hugely generous in loaning Jake this great bike - Jake really loves it.

Jake and I spent a bit of last night and a good bit of the time after Hebrew school this morning getting the bike ready for the road. Jake and I took to the first floor and installed the brakes and some new cables, tossed on a new chain-ring, broke and shortened the chain, mounted the fork and the head-set and tossed in the spacers on the fork. Jake is a quick study and it was fun to see his brain process and learn how the various mechanical parts on the bike worked. He's also super stoked to have a new ride. Its a sweet ride and with the current gearing its going to be a monster hill climber. Might end up being geared a bit too small, but that's fine - it'll just be a good excuse to do some more Dad/Son bike work.

Jim V.'s awesome and his generosity is greatly appreciated in Casa Jones/Turner.