Monday, April 14, 2014

Singletrack!

This past weekend was awesome weather. It was 70 degrees on Saturday and I couldn't pass up the opportunity to ride. We got word that TK Lawless was dry and clear so we geared up and headed down to the middle of nowhere just north of the Indiana/Michigan border. It was an interesting mix of people as Dwight, Jay, Summer, Mike, Dwight's Nephew, Bill and I headed out.

It didn't take long....and I got shot straight out the back of the pack....again. TK Lawless is super tight and twisty in the beginning and the end...and I don't corner very well because my center of gravity is high, so I was really slow...and out of sight they went. I kept chugging away and was just simply enjoying being on my Epic for the first time in 2014. Eventually I caught up (because they were nice and waited for me) and the trail opens up with some climbs. There is just under 10 miles packed into that tiny little park and it is amazing to see people that might be 300 yards ahead of you....or a few miles ahead of you. The trail twists and turns and comes within an arms reach a few different times. A nice change of pace compared to Yankee Springs and Fort Custer...and a ton of fun. Eventually I got back to the car after my first lap and everyone was there waiting for me. We regrouped and headed out for another lap.

It was supposed to be just an easy lap but I got dumped out the back right away again. I kept them closer, but eventually they were gone again. I was just riding my pace....no reason to try to kill myself to keep up...I know they are all faster than me....but I am faster than I was last year....so I wasn't nearly as far behind. I crested a hill and saw the group waiting for me again. I rolled up to the group and slowly maneuvered through them and kept going. I was in the lead! I was actually in the lead longer than I thought I would be when I heard Dwight coming. He passed me on a hill and Summer was close behind him and they were gone...boom. That's ok, still a handful of people behind me.  TK has a cutoff at the 6 mile mark but I drove down there and was feeling pretty good so I chose to keep going. Managed to not be the last person back to the car!

Felt pretty good riding 20 miles on singletrack. Especially with sore legs from running 2 miles a few days before. Any singletrack is good....it was a long wait this year. Overall I am feeling pretty good. My daughter started soccer practice tonight so I ran....actually ran 3.1 miles on the track around the sports complex. I might pay for it, but I need to boost my weight loss program. Fort Custer Stampede is in 3 weeks and I want to be sub 240 or even sub 235 by then so I can gun for podium. Right now there is nobody signed up in my class so I like my chances!!!

Moving forward!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Facing the wall...


I see it coming in the distance. Those weight numbers that I have only attained once the last 2 years. I was close last Monday....sliding the weight to 240 on the dot. I have only been in the 230's once....it was 238 and then I shot back up to 260 shortly there after. Knowing this wall is facing me it has been on my mind for the last few weeks. 

I am not really sure what it is...I am not scared of it. I want it. But I know this wall is there and I haven't been able to get through it. This time, I will get through it.....or rather....over it. 



I know that you could simply walk around this wall in the pic above.....but what if it isn't that easy. Maybe there is a hole, or a mean dog, or barb wire or whatever. The only way to get through this barrier is to go over the top of it. Not the easiest.....but if it was easy...anyone could do it.

So, I am staring at this wall....and I will make my first attempt to get over it this week. I might make it, I might not. If I do, it is simply another step towards my ultimate goal. If I don't, I dust myself off and try again. My mind state is so much better than it has ever been that a setback is no longer a derailment. My perspective changed. Now it is time to take the next step and get into the 230's......



Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The Lowell that wasn't

Well, I had intended on racing this past Saturday for race #2 up in Lowell. I was actually talking to my teammate Mark about what time I would be picking him up....and then something came....uh....up. And by that I mean my entire system decided to purge. No racing for me the next day. It was the craziest thing too. I was fine and eating dinner when I got that "I just ate 4 plates of food" feeling in my stomach even though I wasn't even half way through my plate of chicken and veggies. Apparently it wanted out. And the last time I got sick was 4am on Saturday....about 2 hours before I was planning on leaving. Knowing that I needed to stay in bed and be within close proximity of a bathroom I slept all day Saturday. Blech. Oh well, out 1 entry fee but saved the gas.

Because I step on the scale everyday I can tell you that I lost 7 pounds in 24 hours. Most of it was clearly water weight, as I ended up 240 on the dot on Monday for a loss of 4 pounds for the week. I will take it even if it was not a viable solution to my weight issue.

So....now that it is April 8th and I still haven't been on my mountain bike this year I am getting ansty. Some of my team has plans to ride TK Lawless this weekend and I plan on being there. The trails are dry and NIMBA had a clean up day out there so we are ready to rock. I will get a solid idea of how my training is going based on some lap times down there.

Gonna keep moving forward! The Custer Stampede is only a month away.....and then the true season begins.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

First Quarter Update

Tempus Fugit

Time flies.....or correctly...time flees.

I looked at the calendar yesterday and thought....April....already? There is still freaking snow on the ground and we only had 2 days in the 50's in March. Dang. Time does fly.

My race season started off pretty well with Barry Roubaix. This weekend is The Lowell 50 and then there was a pretty significant schedule change. The Yankee Springs TT was moved to May 18th due to FOOT of snow still on the trails. The WMMBA made the tough, although correct, choice to move the race. As trail advocates there is now way the group would allow a race with over 700 people to happen and risk major trail destruction.
Taken March 27th by Mark K.

Taken March 27th by Mark K.
(this is the bridge a few miles in)

So, that means I have Lowell this weekend and then The Fort Custer Stampede in May. This means that I have a few more weeks to train before my true mountain bike race season begins. Awesome. And, I can drop more weight in the next 5 weeks before Yankee, meaning I will be climbing hills faster. Just gotta keep plugging away!

And...AND! I decided to look at where my numbers are compared to last year. I have 245 more miles in the first 3 months of 2014 than I had in 2103.....and I am 14 pounds lighter than I was at this point last year. I will take it....but I still have work to do!

If you are at Lowell on Saturday I will see you there. Shooting for 2.5 hours over the 34 miles...for an average speed of 13.6 (which is faster than what I raced Barry Roubaix....hoping for better conditions). I would love to be at 2:15 finish time....but that is 15.1 mph......hey...shoot for the stars...