Thursday, June 28, 2012

Summer Update - 5K and 2 Crits

It's been a while....

I'm back from vacation and busy with summer. It is amazing how quickly time flies.  So much to do and so little time. Even without a regular job, I still seem to manage to have a crazy long to do list.  And it seems that working out and doing chores never seems to match up well. As I talk with my friends about this... we seem to be thankful that there has been no rain lately... no grass to cut. Otherwise our houses would look like abandoned meth labs.  Its just crazy. Finding a balance is tough.

I ran my first 5k race this year - although it wasn't official (I didn't offiically sign up). I just went over to Northwestern (which I can see from my house) and ran the Northwestern 5k (which runs nearly past my house on the roads I run So I just got a new to me used Garmin 405... pretty cool thing here. Shows time, pace, distance and pretty much anything you wanted to know (except the next lotto numbers). Now this was the first run with it.... and my 3rd run all year.. before the start I had a 5.1 whopping miles all year long. That's bad. The theory was no running before Mt Mitchell - no shin splints, sore kness - nothing. No runnning, no risk.  I digress.... back to the run. We all took off and headed out Nancy Dutton drive, turning on Penny pike and then on to Dredge road. Yeah Dredge... hold on - stopping a flashback from high school where you had to meet someone out there for an afterschool fight...... ok - better now. Part way down Dredge you turned around at the water stop and headed back the same way and finished on the school track.  As I ran... .I didn't think it was hard.. it wasn't painful. I just questioned it. Why run... biking is so much more fun. My feet can't coast.....  I hope there are no Strava segments on here or this is going to be ugly.  ANYWAYS... as I headed back, everyone went straight in to the track to the finish. I turned and went up towards the middle school and ran around there until I hit my 3.1 miles. Finish time was 28:43 - a new personal record for me. Not super fast by any means, but with the training I was happy. Headed over to the official finish now to watch and cheer on the rest of the runners. It was a good time. Next year I will preregister for it and be ready.

Enough about running. This last weekend was the Tour d'Burg in Miamisburg. Criterium racing. A .6 mile loop with 6 corners in it. Tight, Fast and Crazy on a road bike in a group of riders.  My kind of thing. Big Dave ran this race and it was hosted by Team Dayton Cycling. Very nice event, and everyone was super friendly.  I did the Cat 4/5 race first - race for 40 minutes and see how many laps you can get in. I stuck with the main pack until about 5 laps to go (right around 30 min mark - even though I had been feeling it for the last 6 So I fell back into the straggling line of hangers on... all trying to get back on the pack and not get dropped and lapped. I think there was approx 60 racers in the race to start.  With about 4 laps to go I passed a United Dairy Famer rider and he jumped on my wheel. Alright - someone to work with so we don't get passed by the main pack. I led 2 laps and he just road there. I swung to the left, nothing... he followed. I slowed the pace from 23mpg to 19mph and he stayed there... ok- he is going to stay in my draft until the end and rip past me fresh as a daisy... yeah right. I decided then to hit the next corner and start pounding again... leave him. I ramp up the speed and I'm back up to 24mph... next corner still on the gas.... on the front straight and I look back... I have about 15 yards on the guy... Sweet.. just need to hold it for a couple more laps. Next I hear the lead group vehicle coming around... I'm going to get lapped. The Tour d'Burg car goes by me and points and tells me pull out - so I'm not in the way. DANG! The dude that messed with me kept me from finishing. I should have just kept going and I would have finished on the lead lap. Live and learn. My next race is about an hour away - the Masters Race (means old guys). But before that - Freddy brought his bike for a kids race. One hot lap for the kids. I got him lined up and road off to watch. Freddy told me afterwards one of the other dad's told his kid before the race that he better win or he was going to take his Xbox away from him.... Nice..... Anyway, Freddy took off and did Great. I think he maybe got 5th out of like 13-14 kids. He finished with a smile on his face and that is all that matters!  My next race was coming up and the heat was going up.... I think the computer averaged 100 degrees for that race. It was hot. It started and the pace wasn't as bad as the earlier race... or at least it didn't seem so.... but long story short... about 6 min from the end and I was dragging off the main field again. This time I didn't let up. I kept working. I finished the entire race without being pulled. Nice.  The results - ended up 8th in my first race (even being pulled out), and in the Masters I was 12th.  Not too bad.

I know my blog gets wordy... boring... drawn out... but when I hear from others who read it, it does make me feel good. I was never a writer in school and this shows I'm sure. But I do find it relaxing. I hope that others enjoy it. I know some posts are better than others and this one wasn't great - just felt like I needed to get something going as it has been too long. But I promise if you stick with me I will improve and get better. Thank you for your support!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

My vacation baby and Strava KOM's

OK - I just got home from a little over a week of vacation. I know, rough life. Destination was North Topsail Island, NC.

On the way down we made a pit stop in Greensboro to stop and see the Mellanders. Paul moved to real mountain bike and real BBQ country and hasn't looked back. This is my only time to hang out with everyone and enjoy some good food with friends.  The Mellanders surprised us with some great homemade ravioli - I was shown the path so it could be in my future. I always enjoy these educational cooking dinners - they give me the confidence to try to make new things and make my cooking better. It was Paul who took me under his wing and helped me become the cook I am today. Thank you Paul (and Maureen too!) My family and friends Thank you too!

Next up the beach. Carisa and I brought our bikes. We each got out and got some miles in when we could (early mornings and nap times). I ended up with over 125 miles in there. Topsail is a very bike friendly community. I never felt in danger once while riding (from traffic). My first ride out there was to get the lay of the land - and ride over the inter coastal bridge to the island. Man the wind on the bridge is a little un-nerving. Being not too happy with heights doesn't help either, as you ride along and notice that if you would swerve and hit the guardrail, it is the perfect height to hit it and hold the bike back but launch me off in to the gator waters below.....

The Strava segments I found..... Sneads Ferry Bridge: 3rd out of 19.  Never could get over the bridge without a cross wind of some kind. Not bad- that is a true effort shown. Sneads Ferry Bridge East Bound: tied for 8th out of 13 (with Carisa) - same deal, crosswind but now winded from just attacking the other direction. 210 Sneads Ferry to Surf City: 1st out of 17, I totally saved myself just for this segment this day. It was a full gas time trial effort. Head down and pound it out. My ride home was ugly. Topsail Townline Sprint - this was a toughy, only got one shot at it and there was no clear way to tell where it started and stopped. So I did my best guess and hammered again. 3rd place out of 19. Should be 2nd - as 1st and 2nd was done on a tandem, and they only got me by 1 second over a half mile. DANG! The last segment I found was 210 Surf City to Sneads Ferry. First out of 22. Not too bad. Again when I did this I treated it as a Time Trial and took my time to warm up there before hammering it home and getting it. I was toasty after this one.  Overall the riding was great!

The food in Topsail is very very good. I love seafood. Plenty of places to go that cook fresh seafood. Also lots of places there that have really good junk food. Some of my favorites places I remember were Riverview (best hush puppies and grilled shrimp and fish), The Corner Bake Shop (Amazing cookies, cinnamon rolls, and croissants), Daily Dip has very good ice cream. We also visited Wilmington and hit Chop's Deli and had one of the best sandwiches I have ever had there - the Amsterdam (it was a daily special, not normally on the menu) and then we went to Kilwin's. Both of those places were excellent.

I came home and weighed myself. Moment of truth. I gained. I gained A LOT. I did eat pretty much anything I wanted, just like the old days. SEVENTEEN POUNDS. Yes you read that right. I left weighing 190lbs. Saturday when we got home I got on the scale and it said 207. I expected a gain - maybe 8 pounds, 10 max.... but 17? HOLY COW! Needless to say Sunday I was back on MyFitnessPal. So vacation weigh must not be a real weight - or maybe it didn't have a chance to grab hold. Getting back to my cheerios, regular lunch and dinner, Sunday night I got on the scale again, about the same time as the day before. I weighed 195lbs... are you kidding me - 12 pounds? INSANE...... that is a ton of water and junk weight. The foods on vacation must be full of salt and other retaining things..... it is all I can figure. Craziness.