Sunday, December 30, 2007

Winter Singletrack

Conditions in the woods improved yesterday after about 4" of snow plus a little rain and freezing rain fell. A few days earlier it was downright nasty as there was open water and thin spots.

No wonder I'm confused, I don't know which way I'm going!

This is the trail intersection bearing Jon Kindig's name. He grew up in Wayne (yes, Wayne, Maine!) taught here on the Hill for a few years and coached mountain biking. He has moved on, but continues to compete at a high level in the silly 24 hour solo discipline like the World's.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Look What Santa Brought!

Actually, when I was in limbo in Boston awaiting Babs' and the boys' return from MN last Thursday in the snowstorm, I picked this puppy up from Cycle Loft.
This is the Inside Ride eMotion. I have never ridden rollers and given the early snow this year, it looks like a long off-season indoors so it was time to give them a try. I have been suffering with this Minoura rim-drive for the past 2 seasons. It has done the job, but the sessions were always dreaded.

Hopefully riding rollers will be less of an act of self-mutilation!
In terms of learning to ride them, it took me 2, 5-minute sessions wearing sneakers to ride freely. I sort of followed the company's advice to use a wall as support, but actually found that starting off like normal off of step up worked best and I was spinning away. I'll post any relevant experience on them as the season rolls on.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Hockey Boys

Drake is absolutely infatuated with hockey. He plays on the Maranacook Youth hockey Mites team. 1 practice a week is not enough for him, so he skates with Fenix on the Atoms for fun. These are pics to make any hockey dad happy, no pressure though!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Natz Videos

There are some beauts on YouTube.
Here is the first lap in the 50+ race by Jim Gentes. Epic conditions, crazy crowd, and useless course tape:

Pro Biker Pic

I was trying to post a picture to the NE CX Group, but it apparently didn't go through. So, I'm an ass for trying to be funny!
Anyway, here's the pic in case anyone cared to link to my blog.

There was much discussion on the group as to when its appropriate to begin drinking "man sodas." Apparently, you're an amateur if you start drinking after your last race. Only pros drink during the season, and back off in the off-season. Also, there is much debate on when you should actually start drinkng (assuming you're an amateur): after your last race; after nationals; after worlds.

I say drink when you're thirsty!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Trebon CX Natz crash


Early Winter

This was the scene a few weeks ago, our first snowfall. I figured it was just a teaser.

This is the situation today! The snow stayed and has done nothing but accumulate. As a result, I've accepted the fact that winter is here to stay and training consists of the gym, trainer, and snowshoeing.

Christmas prep

Here are some snaps of the fam out for our traditional chopping down of the Christmas tree. One year we went into the woods on campus and cut down a natural tree. Charlie Brown had a better tree! It's worth going to a tree farm, trust me!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

NECCS #5 @ Sterling Report 11/24


You know when I don't post for a while after a race I'm not too keen on the result! This is no exception, but with more meaning. This race marked the end of my race season so writing about it really brings closure. The result was expected, but not wished for. My internal alarm clock went off earlier in November that said its time to wake up and take time off. I was mentally and physically ready to get off the saddle for the winter. Thus, I was fairly ambivalent about the event, yet wanted to have a good showing and have fun.
The whole fam was on hand for the finale as we had just spent Thanksgiving at my mom's on the Cape and we were en route to Maine. It was the coldest day of riding yet, with temps around freezing which made for a very hard racing surface. The course was unique in that it included a gravel running track, giant 2 log step up, a super steep run up, and many off-camber sections. I felt pretty comfortable with my bike handling, but I could tell I hadn't practiced fast mounts and dismounts for a while as I was pretty slow there.
All photos by racer/photographer extraordinare Paul Weiss

I lined up at the back of the pack and after 2 laps around the track to spread things out I realized just how not into racing in the red zone I was! I quickly found myself DFL and shifted my mind to survival mode with the hope of not getting lapped. To summarize 60 minutes worth of racing: I settled into a groove I felt comfortable sustaining, rode in a mini-pack of 4 or so, passed some guys, got lapped, season over!


Babs and the boys were troopers as they withstood the chilly temps as long as they could, then ended up sticking their heads out of the Sequoia's sunroof and cheered from there! I wish I took a picture!

I hung the bikes up and haven't touched them since, although I'm starting to get the desire again which has probably led me to write the report. January 1 training will begin in earnest as I prepare for the 2008 campaign racing semi-pro mtb and Cat. 2 'cross. Until then, its time to enjoy a life not structured around training. I'll be posting random stuff from here, so tune in if you're wicked bored!