Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 Highlight Film

Sarah and I were talking about how quickly 2011 has gone by last night. She asked what my highlights were. I joked that I would need a highlight film to cover it all. Then I really started thinking about it, and I probably really would! I could probably easily come up with at least 50 highlights for the year: great bike rides, cool moments with the kids, accomplishments at work, fun trips... I could go on for a long time...

Thinking back about all the things I've done does sort of answer the question about why the year has gone by so fast. I wouldn't trade it for something else though. Hopefully it's a sign of life well-lived.

I'm looking forward to next year too. I'm not sure how, but I think it will be even better!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Highland Snow Ride

So, back to training, more-or-less. I'd planned to start easing back into riding a couple weeks ago, but things were just too busy for me to make time for it (in December anyway).

Yesterday, I was down and out with the stomach bug that has been going around our family, but today I felt normal again. So, I dusted off my singlespeed (with nice wide tires) and took it out to Highland for a little ride through the snow.

We don't have a whole lot of snow, and, on the trail, it was pretty crunchy, so I really never had much trouble with traction. What I did have trouble with was getting up all those steep little hills! My gearing was way too hard... the crunchy snow made it worse, but I probably would have had some trouble even in the summer. I ended up walking... a lot!

Anyway, I still had fun. I worked hard enough that I stayed reasonably warm, and the downhills were fun. It was good to get out and ride for a while.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Stony Creek - Not Racing

I found some old posts that I'd written but never posted. I'll do something more current soon...

The Stony Creek cyclocross race was this past weekend. Temperatures were reasonably warm, almost 60F, but the wind was blowing so hard off of the lake that it still felt cold.

I knew once I started warming up that I was in for a long day. My legs felt dead any time I put in a hard effort. I'd been fighting a cold off all week, but I rode a little on Friday and Saturday and felt OK, so I thought I would be OK for the race. Apparently not.

It was really too bad, with Iceman being over and the USGP in Louisville this weekend, the turnout for the race was light. We only had 20 racers start (compared to the 40-50 we had in Ann Arbor). If not for the wind, the course probably would have suited me too. I thought I had a decent shot at the podium. As for the wind, it was brutal. Even going slightly downhill, you really had to grind it out just to push through the wind.

Anyway, as for the race, I lined up in the front row and got an OK start. I was in the front group of 5 or so but not on the front in the wind. It didn't last long though. I slipped back several spots by the end of the first lap and then a few more on subsequent laps. My legs felt terrible the whole time and it hardly seemed like I was really "racing".

Once again the course went along the beach. In my warmup, I thought the beach was going to be partially rideable, but it got churned up a lot in the C race and then I decided it probably wasn't. There were a couple guys riding it during the race, but I didn't attempt it. It seemed like I lost a lot of ground every lap on the beach, even against guys that were also running the whole thing. I'm not sure what to make of that.

Anyway, I ended up finishing 9th, a result I'd normally be reasonably happy with, but I'd expected a lot more. That's racing I guess. Two more races to go this year. Hopefully I can get feeling better and have some good rides.