Thursday, 28 April 2011

Easter Training Summary - Heavy Legs Part 2

I have managed to maintain a stable weight of easter which is not a bad effort considering I have destroyed a whole bunny in single sitting. It might be explained by my following training plan:
Friday          - 60km Mordiallic return
Saturday      - 90km Stockdale loop
Friday          - 35km RAAF base/town lap
Monday       - 90km Stockdale loop
Tuesday       - 60km Mordiallic return
Wednesday  - 90km Frankston return
Thursday      - 90km Frankston return
Friday          - 60km Mordiallic return (there wasn't much left in my legs today)

That's a bit over 550km's burning approx 10,000 calories in total. The other key benefit is maintaining my cycling tan into the start of winter. The only downside is the cost of food that is required to feed me. 

The red training bike has finally been serviced after approx 15,000k's of neglect receiving a well needed new chain and cassette (it'll never be this shiny again). It feels like new and unfortunately I have no reason not to train on it now.

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Defensive Cycling: a beginers guide

The more you cycle, the more likely you are to eventually bite the bitumen based on the number of hours you are riding exposing yourself to any number of threats. For examples here are some I have seen over Easter:

- animals including wild life (emu's, kangaroos) and dogs
- cars (the most dangerous beast of all, one skidded to a halt behind us today scaring the bejesus out of me)
- other cyclists including just plain angry human beings and beginners like myself
- obstacles on the road including glass, stones, oil, water and cow poop (if your in the country) 
- fog (if you can't see the car, its a sure bet it can't see you)

You can reduce the exposure as much as possible by riding within your limits, not overlapping wheels, maintaining your equipment and always making sure you keep your thumbs under your bars. But this is no reason not to ride as the benefits far outweigh the risks. I blame this post on the recent work safety programs I have undertaken. The most important thing is to get home safely so you can re-fuel and go riding again!!!

Sunday, 17 April 2011

CCCC Glenvale Crit: C Grade. The finale.

It was on from the get go today. I started off the line chasing a rider and before I knew it we were in a 4 person break (I can't say 4 man break, as there was a female in the group). Riders came and went, we were working together fairly well and at one stage almost out of view from the main bunch. It was tough and I wasn't getting much coverage from the fellow escapees which made it that much tougher. 20 minutes later we were finally swallowed up by the peloton.

Back racing with the bunch, I finally felt confident cornering hard in a pack 4-5 wide, holding and steeling wheels with the best of them. After going a tad early the other week, I stayed in the bunch on the last lap finding a reasonable wheel (not the best, but I was still moving forward & if your not moving forward your going backwards). The pace was one with the pack chasing down a couple of people upfront before a big sprint finish. Unfortunately I had left it a little late and had no clear road rolling through 6th but not too far behind the winners. Overall speed average was a huge 41km/h (and this is C grade) which was my fastest race to date with the last lap hitting a massive average of 48km/h showing the strength of the group. Bring on the winter road season and Around the Bay as I organise the work team which will see setting up regular training rides around Melbourne.

Dumpling roulette - a non cycling related post

 I am not sure what you and your friends do for fun, but on Saturday arvo mine played dumpling roulette. Dumpling roulette is loosely based on shotgun roulette, but instead of bullets there is loaded dumplings with all kinds of fillings. Here is the brief guide to the delicacies we were facing:
- pork
- chicken
- chilli pork or chicken
- wasabi pork or chicken 
- chilli & wasabi (with something else you couldn't taste)
- sour worms
- gummi bears
- centuary egg
- salted egg
- black bean herrings
- peanut butter, chocolate chip and coconut
- sheep's heart (was hidden from the chiefs as no one was to keen)

As you can see from the facial expressions, it was obvious when people got the special dumplings. The more concerning rule was that a dumpling was required to be completely finished once started.
 The only savior was ice cold beer and shots of jager. The cook had a strange obsession of having shots from various contraptions including chocolate bunnies, tupperware containers and jam jars. In fact, I found a shot glass which he bluntly refused and chose to use a small soy dipping container. Maybe the wasabi had got to him.......

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Friday is my rest day - Hoegaardon, Frites and Mayonnaise

I have squeezed in almost 180kms since Monday around work and the weather. Friday brings Hoegaarden steins, frites and Mayonnaise at after work drinks. This is the recommended carbo loading for a 90km ride on the following day (weather and hangover permitting). Hope your Friday is fun filled with beers and chips too.

Saturday, 9 April 2011

CCCC Glenvale Crit: C Grade. Cycling Superstitions.

I have finally become reasonable at crit racing and the season has basically come to an end. Even though I wore the unlucky number 13 upside down and didn't shave my legs on the day of a race (both are required to to cancel out bad cycling luck), a early break got away and stayed away till the end. This meant speeds were slightly higher in C grade averaging just over 40km/h, but no one was working together and my couple of attempts at the front were futile.

On the last lap I was working a hard turn at the front attempting to chase the leaders who had long gone and was promptly cut off mid corner by a guy who decided he liked the look of my line. Luckily it didn't cause a accident behind me and was absolutely not necessary as there were no placings to be had. Oh well, next week is the last crit to prove myself in C grade before I switch to the winter road season. On a side note, it is interesting to point out that there is significant cultural differences between clubs. All in all, I prefer my local club races which have been known to end in a sprint finish to the bar for a scotch and cola.

Sunday, 3 April 2011

CCCC Glenvale Crit: C Grade . New track and new pain face

 It was good to ride a new track today and a new Grade. Unfortunately I had to wear a not very fashionable fluro green head band, signifying that I was a newbie but at least it matched my bike. I had no real game plan today except to sit in and get comfortable with the circuit and practice pain faces for the camera. This is only because last week I was told off for smiling because racing is serious business. It was a great little square circuit with wide corners which allowed for some higher speeds. Overall we managed a average of 40km/h.
It was kept interesting with a constant stream of people trying to break away, I had a bit of a dip to keep things interesting but as usual nothing would stick and it came down to a sprint finish. I went a bit early on the last lap (again) and was first through  last corner but couldn't hold on for even a place. I manged to finish comfortable inside the top 10, but it is probably time to start some more dedicated sprint training. Luckily I got chatting to Steele von Hoff from the Genesys Pro Cycling team yesterday and got some tips. Time to practice my 3 out and back just at Bill Dove told us in Adelaide.