Wednesday, May 30

'Cause that's How I Roll

I did this fantastic update about some bike rides, and you just can't make everyone happy. Seems to be the story lately, you are too early too work, no wait, i think you were too late! You rode a bit too fast in your race, or, hmm, that was actually a bit too slow for the status quo. Now on that last post, i just wasn't keen enough to mention two other warriors of the woods: Silent Ed and Uncle Greg.

ed: I call him Gone in 60 Seconds, because he was. He is a super fast local who has sworn off racing, i believe, and just wrips up single track. He also cut out early to go live normal life.

uncle greg: Now he was "UPSET" at the lack of a mention in the blog. he has been on a "hiatus" from serious riding, so maybe that is why i neglected the name drop. Or, maybe it was the fact that he started a good 5 miles UP the road from us, making Ed chase him, who was chased by Matt for the reason that Matt was somewhat waiting for me, and i was chasing all of them. OR, it could be he was riding in Stealth T Brown All black, so i just didn't realize he was there. I did see him when he got a flat and was sitting in 7 Oaks and stopped waiting for me and talking about things in his garage. Please note this was unintentional but will probably happen again, to someone somewhere.

Things off the Bike are WAY more interesting than On the Bike:

DOZER PEED ON MY LEG. The pets like to cruise around the mountains in the Jeep, hanging their heads and catapulting slobber all over the car and infesting their fur into the interior. We got home the other day and "Happy Helpers" were trimming all the trees on the road. As soon as i opened the car door, the pets bolted to their unsuspecting friends. I lunged for them, landing a lucky grab getting both their collars in my hands. At that precise moment, Dozer was being manly and was on track to marking a large pine cone in the driveway. MY leg got in the way and i received quite the shower from about my knee down. I had no choice but to hold tight and stomp up the driveway pulling both pets with me, squishing in my flops, and kicking up dust clouds that quickly molded into a paste of pee-dust on my leg. I called Jason at work. He could do nothing to help me. He actually laughed at me. I hate it when people laugh at me.

Old News, Big Accomplishments:
Charlie from work took an hour and a half off his Breathless Agony time. He said it was because he didn't cramp and slept a lot before. Good to know!

Denise Monaham (i spelled that wrong) won some swimming events at her first home meet!!

I helped out at a Mom and Daughter mountain bike clinic with Tonya Bray Way back on Mothers Day our in Calabasas! Super cool with 10 year olds and their moms, and 30 year olds and their moms! They learned to ride down stairs, bunny hop, ride up a hill, and were able to eat some really great food!!

Monday, May 28

Does This bike make me look fat?

This weekend i was able to log near-epic rides. (nobody was airlifted, dehydrated or lost, thus the near). Ride number one caused some bike damage, leading me to ride a FAT bike for big ride number two. Here, the story unfolds. Quickly.

ONE: I was able to meet up with Adam, Art, Van, Eric and Robert from Team PossAbilities at Loch Leven. I rode from the house and we started the climb up to AO. There, we hit up the usuals of the Postal Loop, up Hill Ranch Road to Glass road and down the single track. For those of you who have no idea what in the world i am talking about, i took no pictures to help you out. Up in the San Bernardino mountains the Santa Ana River trail traverses some of the coolest terrain in the area.

The Company: GREAT! Super cool guys, solid athletes, and totally safe to ride with!

The Weather: Bit warm, would have been horrid down in the valley!

The Mechanical: Now i have extremely lucky on the mechanical side of mountain biking. On this ride, however, there are a lot of rocks, roots, dirt and sharp corners in narrow single track going down the hill. Going around one such corner, i realized my front brake lever was all the way to the grip and nothing was happening. MY rear wheel was locked up and i was "sliding" on about 6 inches of single track. Oops. I had lost my front disc brake pads and the the pin that holds them in. I gingerly made it to the huge water crossing where i met random guys who had just crossed. They were really funny and i told them i had been left in the woods alone with no brake and i had been crying. I finally caught my group where we decided to put rear brake in the front for more breaking power. (I actually didn't cry, just so you know. i quite thankful this happened on a training ride!!)

Once back to AO, i met Jason for a delicious lunch at the OAKS, we like to support the local economy!

When i was cleaning the bike and figuring out what parts i need to get by next weekends Cal State race, i realized my rear tire was a goner!! The sidewall was pulling away from the bead by about 2 inches!! I was VERY lucky i had decided not to descend back down Loch Leven with one brake and a sidewall that was about to blow!! I have heard that going down on the asphalt remnants from the 60's, weeds, and dirt of Loch Leven REALLY sucks!!

RIDE TWO: i TOTALLY did not want to ride my road bike this weekend and since both Christie and Shellie were out of town, i needed to be creative with my riding motivation. Mr. Freeman said to come along for another ride in the woods. I took the bait, and pulled out the Fat Possum. Now this is the bike that could make me look fat. It weighs in around 38 lbs (compared to the 22.5 of my bike). I think it has 6" of travel both front and back, but it was set up for Jason, so i only got about 3" out of both shocks!! It feels like riding a cruiser bike, all laid back and what not. So we just started climbing. Once at the top of Jenks Lake, i sheepishly asked Matt, um, how long did we just climb. 1.5 hours, 12.7 miles. At that point i received a phone call from Jason "So, how do you like my bike???" It really SUCKS. I haven't even riden down a hill yet!!! I kept entertaining the idea of bailing out, but there was true EPIC down hill to come.

Once we collected the group (they waited as i just continually pedalled) it was on. I haven't bailed, cased it, jumped off and purely wrecked so much all year. Nothing BAD happened just a lot of really odd looking and located bruises and nicks.

Funniest Part: We took an off shoot to the trail that i had never taken before, within about 4 minutes of over grown descent, we popped out on the river, crossing a bridge DIRECTLY into an occupied campsite, pumpin the Musica en Espanol, consuming cervesa and fishing. We had to actually pick up our bikes so we wouldnt hit any of their camping implements or children. Once squeezing through their tent lines i realized we were actually in 7 Oaks, right by their store when i promptly blurted "This is weirder than living in Forest Falls" Matt said the guy in the store heard me and was offended and charged them $8 for peanuts. i think he was lying. There was a swimming pool, Mobile home for sale only $53,000!!! We might go look at it today. or not.

This is when i remembered where we actually were and how much climbing loomed ahead to get us back to Angeles Oaks. Oy. What a day to feel fat, and ride Fat. Now my moral side took over and i began to feel bad.

This is Jason's bike, and i have made him ride it 18.6 miles in Big Bear, at altitude. He also rode it on the Hell ride last year. Every time i dumped this bike, it was a struggle to pick it back up with my weenie-cyclist arms. I couldn't clip out because the pedal was too tight. No wonder Jason threw his helmet 7 times and walked a lot. But it was even hard to push the dang thing.

Oh well. Today is a holiday, so no kids. I got up at 4:30am to go teach spin, very unwillingly. I kept remembering the last holiday that fell on a monday and that we did not have spin, but i was not informed otherwise, so i went. And there was a sign on the door that the first aerobics class of the day was at 8:30am and it was step. I stared blankly at the door for about 58 seconds. I had brought my swimmers so i sat in the hot tub in an attempt to appease my very angry quads, then came home for a nap with the puppies that began at 6:45 am. They like to cuddle!

Tuesday, May 22

Swimming Holes, Kittens, and ice cream Bars

We raced at Castaic on Sunday, round number 3 of the Cal State Series. It has become a necessary evil that most people approach with deep distain. Upon arriving, i asked semi-pro Romolo Forcino if he had come out to pre-ride. His reply was patent of anyone who had ever raced there before. "NO. I know how to ride up a hill." And that about sums it up.

Pro women started at 1:18 pm with us experts just two minutes behind. The morning marine layer had burned off, allowing the sun the begin the burning of our flesh. It was hot. The thing with this course is that all the climbing is on super exposed fire roads. The only shade is a quick bit of single track which was actually very entertaining due to the fact that it runs through a picnic area and parallel with the lake shore riddled with fisher-people. There were many unknowing and unwilling spectators as we careened through the park and ruffled the tranquility of their afternoon walk or lunch with their family.

Thats what brings me to the swimming hole. The lake looked really yucky, but i SO wanted to fall of the trail and into it. I have not been this hot since Santa Barbara last year. The air was thick and stagnant, with barely any break.

i also had to think about kittens and puppies to keep my mind calm and sane. The funny thing is that i felt about 180% better than i did at this event last October.

Then i really wanted ice cream, but the level of exertion on my system made me choose wisely, and avoid all such products until later in the day.

Once the race was over and i had sprinted another guy on a specialized for the finish (he was a semi-pro and i passed him in the feed zone, his mom yelled "Hey, you just got passed by a girl." He came up next to me knowing he had ANOTHER LAP to race and told me he would sprint through the start finish line. He won. Then raced another lap.) The only "technical section" was a small bit of descending double track with really sandy switchback. And there was some of those going up too. Anyways, on the DOWN ones lap too, i was mid-pack with the pro/semi-pro mens field (being lapped and all) which quickly turned into the "High heart rate" for the day. They were super nice, but totally on a different mission than I. Personally, i was attempting to stay about 5 switchbacks ahead of my nearest fo (who happened to be in another class anyways) and these guys were on a mission for pure domination and destruction of a guy about half a switchback behind. But it was cool to see their lines and try to take them and it was cool to see one of them clip out!

I could see a thick layer of salt on my skin and on my kit and my head began turning flips. Later, by the wiesness of Caoch Gareth, i learned that these are signs of dehydration. Go figure. Monday i felt like i had a severe flu and hated everything, except my pets.

I know i have said i wont really blog straight up race reports, but i have nothing else to say. I think this was a redemption race for this course for sure, i actually enjoyed the experience and was able to come out with a bit of a victory too.

Christie, on the other had, fell to the fate of a bee. The wee little monster took her race result into his own stinger and stung her, forcing her to pull out of the race after two laps. Good work out though and the epi-pen was not needed!

Wednesday, May 16

I found some things online

ACMA'S: Last night a pivotal event was held celebrating Country Music Legends and newcomers. I sure hope you watched it, Tivo'd it, or will have already ordered the leather-bound box set. This is Montgomery Gentry, duh. I really like their outfits, especially the skull detail paired with big hat. The gallery of photos is amazing, the outfits cunning and well thought out. Levi's with white shirt, black ten gallon hat. Small dress with lace up boots. Great Combo!! Sometimes i wear hats, but only outside.

Jason has a hat, but i made him stop wearing it unless he is hiking on the TICK trail, so he wont get ticks.
Speaking of Ticks, I hope Carrot Top checks his head well before he goes to bed. He is looking a little top-heavy in the bicep area, dont you think? I always thought of him as more scrawny and sinewy than this shot. Also, he could develop his quads more too.

The Plight of Wee Man

Wee Man, tim-Tam himself, had a run in with the Vet. it was late Saturday night as he sat next to me on the futon, slightly leaning in. My hand lightly grazed over some odd formations on his side. They looked like raised crop signs, and they swiftly began to multiply. Now whether or not it was wheat reacting with his insides, aliens yerning for contact, or a bug in his bed, we will never quite know.

I changed his "sheets" and vacuumed his room. I gave him benedryl and watched his every move. They spread and joined and raised higher, getting hotter and hotter. So, i took him to the vet. He has never been there, so he thought it was a very glamorous play date. He sauntered about, sliding on the slick floor. All the other pets there were owned by Buick-driving men with canes. their pets could have been show stoppers in Best in Show. All of which could stand under Wee Man without touching his teets. he just flattened himself on the ground and let them tackle him and roll around. The vet asked me if i have thought about taking him to obedient school. Um no, i AM the school. I live in the woods, my life is chaos, i am crazy, so what would expect of my pets? the nerve.

Bottom line and statistics:

1. Wee Man Weighs in at 71.6 LBS!!
2. New Diet: Tree-Hugging, high end Hollywood type hypo-allergenic food that contains more organic and pure ingredients then MY diet!!
3. Two shots of something fantastic that made the Bumps dissapear within 44 minutes
Oral medication: 3 2x a day
4. Shampoo, again, more expensive then mine combined with the new hair brush i bought to be used 2 times a week. We dont have a tub, so it's shower time. It also has to stay ON him for 20 minutes. Good luck with that one!!

He is now probably chillin in his crate, staring Dozer down, praying that he will unlatch his door!!

Tuesday, May 8

Go Protect a Trail

Most people talk a dumpster full of trash about the mountain bike scene in the Inland Empire. But they don't live here. Ye haw for them for living in such pristine and wonderfully environmentally sound communities where the single track must run to the state line and the foliage is green year round with little or no human intrusion. Good for them.

But we live here. We have decided to train in sand, dust, half-asphalt conditions that shockingly have prepared us to compete wheel-to-wheel with the above mentioned trail warriors. Oh yes, did i forget about the dozens of mile of single track network that i can ride to from my house and sneak up on deer, snakes, bear, mountain lion, fox, and bobcats. Or were they sneaking up on me? People are so quick to dismiss an entire region without being educated about it. Better for i guess, they can go shred their own pine needles.

The little we do have is precious, and it is being encroached on.

Thursday May 10th 6 PM Loma Linda Civic Center Community Room
Town meeting regarding the land in and around Hulda Crooks Park.
Be there. If not to say anything, at least to know why giant earth movers could in fact soon be moving the earth you call a trail.

New trails are being cut in the Crafton Hills as we speak. Although 57 family sized homes are being built at the base of the hill, the Crafton Nature Conservancy has worked hours with the developer to protect the land and the animals and to allow for only minimal development. Go thank a park worker.

PRized Possession
My dad sent me this picture, i think it is from Ecuador. He had sent me a picture of a "bike shop" in Africa but i cant find it. This gentleman only has this bike. He travels all through the country side doing his work, on his bike. He has probably never thought about the height of his seat, the weight of the tubes in his tires or whether or not to use tubes for that matter. But check out his smile. THAT is why i ride bikes!!

Sunday, May 6

Little Known Facts

Tour of the Gila Update: The brother, forges on with his top 15 performances. In friday's really long road race: 12th place, right in the lead pack. Pulling into Saturdays Criterium, i was skeptical, but when i clicked on the results last night, i was stoked to see yet another 12th place finish, bumping up to 16th over all in the General Classifications. Dang. We'll see what today brings!!

NMBS #3 Fontana: That was yesterday, a pretty tough ride. I was able to hold onto first place, squeaking out another national win. I was very greatful to have stayed up right the entire race, even though my legs were quaking like little leaves on many of the descents, all three laps!! Once again the girls in my category are a class act, very professional and kind, which is a breath of fresh air. I was also lucky to have support out on the course from my team and Jason, and being a local race, many of the local racers/fans were out in droves!! Also, Tanya from Cannondale and all my other racing homies.

So many people talk so bad about this event, it is actually funny. The course is challenging and entertaining and very tough. It tends to morph even between laps, you will NEVER be able to ride the same line!! The air was clean all weekend, the temps pretty mellow, and the wind moderate, pretty darn nice for Fontana. I was out checking things out on Friday, and a guy was complaining about the horrible air, high winds, and nasty surroundings. Lets just say i told him whats up. Can you see the mountains? Check. Are the paint ball gangs here? No. Is the trash picked up? Yes. Can you ride these trails? No.

Grafitti in action: This is sorta funny and ghetto. I was walking to the bathrooms by the softball field and much to my suprise, i saw grafitti being created. Now i always thought this happened at night, by street light and created by ex-cons, always male. But no. It was 1 pm. A "girl" and her son were standing behind the bleachers with a huge expo marker, making signs on the top seat. The boy was asking his mother if he was making the letters the correct way and they headed over to tag the drinking fountain. I just looked down and walked into the bathroom. She had big hoop earings, i know what those mean. She could probably throw down and wouldnt hesitate to do it in front of her proginy.

Trohpies that WIN: I give Team Southridge a HUGE thumbs up, you guys are winners, award. I get really tired of lame around the neck awards or plastic monstous things. Now once again, dont think i am cocky. i race against 4-10 people most of the time so the podium isnt a long shot.

For yesterdays event, i got a WInners Jersey!!! Stamped with "Fontana 2007 race winner" front and back. I will make sure NOT to wear it riding through Rialto or anywhere else for that matter that may have a territory war going on.

Then, there was a set of ODI grips. BRIGHT GOLD!!! What more would i ever want?? They were all placed neatly in the Holy Grail, i mean a really big mug/cup/challis thing that is the best EVER!! I am actually being serious, and i will post pictures of them soon.

Sponsor of the day: I could not have done it without these guys:

1. Pedialyte: I drink 1-2 of these two days prior to an event. I usually split it with water, but i think it helps keep me hydrated and avoids awful things like hypernetremia - again.

2. The Reese's Fast Break: Excellent the day before and after the race. NEVER during or right before, stupid idea. but at 270 calories of pure goodness, you really cant go wrong!

Some people are WAY nicer than me: Sarah Kaufmann, from Rauring Mouse is great. She was second place yesterday and gave me quite the run for my spot. I had seen that she was registered, but her name was a new one so i googled her (duh). I figured out she is quite the endurance racers competing in 8-24 hour events. And doing well. Uh-oh. On lap one, i was about 12 seconds ahead of her and i dropped my chain. I had to stop to fix it. i started flippen out (in my head) Thinking i was about to lose the lead blah blah blah. She stopped. She asked if i was ok. She waited for me to start again, she never went passed me. Now, if i was to take a poll of all the racers i know, i would guarentee that about 99.2% of you would ride by, wish me luck, and kick up a rooster tail of dust. Not the case. If she had passed me, who knows what would have happened, but i do know that she is very classy and quite the racer.

We had a guest!: Mary Ellen ASh stayed with us up here in the woods. The pets liked her and she liked the pets, so that is a very good thing!! I totally let the house explode, vowing to do no dishes or laundry folding over the weekend. sorry about that! But it was a fun time!

Friday, May 4

They didn't even KNOW

Today during our Cinco de Mayo party on the field, a wooden bat-wielding student headed for the Pinata and jokingly swung it towards my leg. I responded with an automatic "Dont Do a Nancy Kerrigan on me." they just stared. So the explanations were quite necessary.

"Olympic figure skater hopeful Nancy Kerrigan (at right) is attacked by a man apparently working with rival skater Tanya Harding (left). Kerrigan and Harding are vying for spots on the US Olympic team. The attack is widely thought to be one way of ensuring that Harding would make the team and earn a Gold medal in Lillehammer. She does make the team, but her turn is lackluster and is characterized by complaints to judges about her skates' poor performance. Kerrigan will go to become an international skating star. Harding will participate in a women's smack down wrestling contest."

I could push this issue really far, but i just feel like doing a photo-log of the events back in 1994. The year i graduated from 8th grade

What began as an innocent quest for Olympic stardom, turned into a debackle that will forever taint Figure Skating.
Tanya Harding, the native Rural Orgonian realized she she may not make the cut, so she took matters into her own hands, or shall we say her pocket book as she hired an un0skilled hit man to make the crack on the knee heard around the world. "WHY???" Nancy wailed as the crow bar richoched off the side of her patella. She was still clad in super-hero duds heading for the locker room. Nancy was able to rehab and go to the Olympics, as did Tanya.

Kerrigan has gone on to do charity work, skating with the stars and many other productive things like child bearing.

Harding, on the other hand, has found her face in mug shots, gained some L-B's, divorced her husband, and otherwise slandered herself. She cried at events, complaining that her lace was not tied right and got a redo, and still didn't do well.

Harding also tried to jump-start her athletic career in boxing. I think she lost. Or at least she should have.
On a better note, go watch Blades of Glory

Thursday, May 3


Many of you know i have an older brother who is a Cat 3 roadie out of Boulder, CO. Pretty the sole person i blame for getting me into this mountain biking problem we call racing. Now this has been a very long winter for him and his wife Suzanne as i have mentioned in previous posts.

This past sunday, as we were having our weekly "how many hours did you ride today and how bad was the heat or how deep was the snow" conversation, he dropped the "I am doing a stage race this weekend" line. Well, i am doing a NMBS race this weekend.

So i get on line as usual to check out his results at THE TOUR OF THE GILA which is just this MONSTER of an undertaking in New MExico.

TT: Day one
18TH PLACE (out of 73!!!!!!) JEREMY DUERKSEN BLUE SKY VELO 2:23 min off the leader. For some reason i was under the belief that he doesnt train any more. hmmm. then i thought well he has a solid mountain biking background, and mtn bikers do well at tt...

RR: Day two
13th place!!!!!!!! out of 71!! 4:59 off the front. He is sitting pretty in 14th place GC!!! I am so excited, but i dont have his phone number or Suzannes to call them and get the play by play recap (he sucks at those though, probably because he is a boy and my sister and i took all the talking time when we were small) and tell him out AWESOME he is!!!

Hopefully he is sleeping or watching ROCKY BALBOA right now to get him all amped up for day 3 of the 5 day race. That is a very, long, event!!!

Wednesday, May 2

Don't Call me, Part 2

Way back when our home line was taken out blah blah blah. Well now, my cell phone is down for the count and i am too cheap to fix the problem. I left my charger at Jason's dads house so now i am just waiting for it to arrive in the mail.

If you are cool enough, you have that number. then you can call it and hear me tell you to call my house in the woods if you really need me. Then you can call there and leave a message. Later on i might call you back and give you Jason's personal cell phone number, not his work cell phone number. then if you need to, you can call me on that one.

Also, if you are "in" you can drop me an email.

If you do not meet the above requirements, you have either fallen off my "list" or made it onto the "other" list. Best of luck

Tuesday, May 1

I owe it all to.....

COACH'S OATS I got a bag of this cereal from my sponsor bike shop, and i have been eating it every morning since. I usually add some fresh fruit like strawberries or bananas with some almond milk. it must have been the trick, the last missing element, to my first NMBS WIN!!!

I will never really know what the trick was, but i will continually attempt to repeat it or find that groove. Maybe it was the high noon start, just like 3rd period PE out on the field. Or maybe the near 100 degree weather with high winds kicking up towers of dust. Once again, another great day in the Inland Empire. Or maybe it was because my parents, grandparents, inlaws, husband, and dogs were there. OR, last but not least, maybe it was because i had TEAMMATES out on course!!

To have all those great people there, AND my mountain biking family (who i feel i terribly neglected over the weekend. Can we be friends again?!?!) was fantastic!!

NICE PEOPLE after a dusty pre-ride on saturday, i headed to the car leary that i was going to have a mechanical. I am pretty new with hydrolic disc brakes and i really stink at adjusting them. I was accompanied on my ride with a constant whir and ting, not a good sound. As i was loading up and talking to the husband, i mentioned to him that my brakes were being lame. AS soon as i hung up, the van FULL of guys next to me asked if they could work on my bike. Maybe it was that we were all on Specialized or that we recognized eachother from So Cal racing, or i was just a lame girl alone in a cow pasture. None the less, the hooked me up big time!! I am not going to admit to all the things they fixed, but lets just say that about 10% of them were my fault. Come race time, the Sho Air guys were out on course or in the feed zone and start finish line and they were cheering for me!! How cool is that! MOre contacts made, more friends to be found!!

Nice people part 2: I was very tired on Monday morning. Jason and i had this great plan of saving money and car pooling to work. Um, no. That would mean an entire hour early to work for me, not gonna happen. So i was left with the jeep, on E. I rolled it down the driveway and coasted out of the woods and off the mountain just in time to roll into Circle K. As i raveged through my bag, i realized that my man-wallet was on table at home, UP the mountain. I had $2.20 and i was officially late for roll call for first period. Oops. I run inside and ask if they take checks. No stupid. what IS a check?? When i ran back in with my change, the lady behind the counter GAVE ME $4.00!!!! She sees me about 4 times and week and told me to bring it by the next day. I gave her a 5 yesterday. how nice is that though? Another un-named coworker loaned me some more cash because it was JASON'S BIRTHDAY and the gas i had put in the car wasnt enough to get me home to get my wallet!!! I also bought $10 off of Charlie with a check so that i could get Jason his lunch, which i was supposed to have made, birthday and all, but didnt. Oy, what a way to roll through a Monday!!!