Thursday, February 26, 2009

Taining day with a friend...

Soliloquize, I somehow added this word to my limited lexicon, light years ago. It means roughly "to talk to oneself." I'm so good at this activity that I sometimes wonder about my sanity. All winter I've been training , and each day I thrust my tortured soul through a mirage of misty internal make believe. My body simultaneously traveling the route of a twisted labyrinth made from concrete and asphalt. I cruise the path laid before me as it meanders across coastal bluffs, and craggy cliffs. I push harder over rolling hills and eventually crest the mountains. The pacific ocean explodes into view, its beautiful blue vastness blasting my spatial awareness into gyroscopic turmoil. I slowly gather my spatial awareness like a lethargic sloth with its tail twisted around a ton of lead weights as it trudges uphill with velcroe on its feet. A bit more centered, I dive into moss and lichen laden depths of lushs green forest and flow through the wise shadows cast from mingling redwoods. The natural imagery combined with my wandering mind put me into a third dimension, and then my SRM slaps me out of my sacred place and tells me to push harder.
Let me tell you something, the SRM is one of the greatest things to happen for training, but as an athlete always pushing oneself, you learn to hate the little shit ass contraptions.....It never gets easier.....the numbers always go up...and you always struggle to hold a wattage, or exceed a previous wattage. This is how we get better, but this is also why I hate my SRM!...It tells me precisely how and when to inflict pain on myself, putting me smack in the center of my hurt box shackled to chain of mr pain. After repeating this procedure daily, my neck has become permanently crooked, twisted into an awkward grimace as if it were the most efficient place to suffer. You could almost call it home.

Today I had a friend to suffer with and it was great....5x6min above threshold intervals 400-450 watts....If it wasn't for Ian's amazingly consistent pace setting I would have lost the motivation to keep myself in the hurt box.....and the Hurt Box is where it all happens....not the 30 seconds of glory sprinting past some tired old guy who just got his chamois handed to him on the roaster ride, but we're talking 6 min of lubricating your chain, knees, and handlebars with drool. 6 min with your eyes fixed blankly on the endless road ahead. 6 min wheezing like an elephant sprinting uphill lusting after its mating partner with a punctured lung. 6 min in the 400 club...step it up Johnson. Its good to have a friend, especially after 4000 miles of base work, and many days alone in the rain.

Thanks IAN

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Cherry Pie crit

Lined up for the first race of the year, and I'm not sure if I was intimidated or inspired when I saw the pre reg roster which included Garmin Chipoltle, BMC racing, OUCH, BISSEL, and Cal-Giant. In total a 120 rider field...I was definatedly a little nervous. Garmin stayed home.....but that would have been fun.

The race consisted of 1 mile laps with a short hill/descent and a lot of wind. A break went off the front and stayed off for the duration leaving the rest of us to chase. Chase?..... Hmmm?...each other or the lead group?.......Bingo!......we fought each other every lap with many promising chase groups, but try as we all did, is was just one solo effort after another. In the end all efforts yielded not an inch of progress. We all had our chance to show our grit, put on a show, tuck back in the peloton, rest and try again like a bunch of peacocks strutting our stuff we all got denied! The break of two stayed away and stole the prize. I was proud to stay off the front solo for a lap...but what did it get me? YEAH, NOT MUCH....Turner stayed away for a lap also, but if we were on the same page a well timed counter atack may have hit the spot.....When we graduate from bicycle racing 101 we might actualy do some damage. Until then were just a bunch of strong circus fowl show birds in a stadium putin on a show for all to see.......just wait till we smart'n up.

All said I had a great time and learned a lot. It was a great way to start the season....I ended up 18th and teammate Chris Turner ended up 24th...not bad.

check out this site for a cool vid..