Tuesday, December 21
Tuesday, November 23
Wednesday, November 17
This week we were joined by Teenage Heart Throb Andrew Sjorgren and Craig Turner (we don't have a nickname for him. Yet) After riding the Lynn Pletcher Memorial ride (which was AWESOME) we headed to the hills. I unhitched on the climb as usual, and promptly flatted. Three times. we run slime tubes (I have never weighed my bike) and the slime sprayed all over my bike and I. 2nd tube in, boom. Put slime tube back in, held 10 psi. Dilemna? Uh, no. I'm a bike racer, I wanna do a stage race, so I got on the bike and rode up the mountain 50-60 minutes on a rear flat. I am so pumped I had my carbon race wheels. I never really knew the white line had such a drastic curve to the right...
Nearing the Y, Brian came back to get me, leaving Heart Throb and Craig soaking up the sun and talking about kittens and unicorns. Another really awesome thing about my race wheels is that they are deep-dish. Not only do they catch like a yacht sale in the wind, you gotta have long stemmed tubes. But I just put a hole in the last one. So we used Brian's short stemmed tube. That was comedy. we could tell it was losing air so Brian told me to hurry and get as far as I could (1.2 corners to be exact) before it went flat again. And rode it the 5 miles into town. Somewhere in there we switched rear wheels. And yes, the wedding is still on.
Once we got everything sorted, I wasn't about to be alone. I rode those rollers harder than Sisquoc to stay with the boys. On the descent I got relegated between Turner leading me through the descent and Brian coaching me through, as Heart Throb rode Blindside...I could have killed him. These boys do not stop pedalling, and they don't brake. By the time we bottomed out in Banning i was silent, eyes completely bloodshot from being pasted open in the howling wind, face covered with sweat, snot, and eye non-tears. Big Girl training has begun.
Once back to base camp, we just ate and ate.
Sunday, was so much harder. It was about 3,000ft less of climbing, way less on the wattage, but oh so hard to get up and out. Papa Breyer was my riding partner and I could not have asked for better! "Big Wheel, what's the plan today?" "Um, I gotta just stay on the bike for 3 hours...." We made it 3:09. So. Hard. My right eye really hurt, come to find out i was having some nasty reaction to something, making it ache and track poorly and look horrendous. I thought of going home a lot, I thought about what I was going to eat, a lot. But Breyer and I talked like school girls about everything from racing to the stuff school girls talk about. He eeked me to 1:35 and I started to feel like at least a recreational cyclist again, and by the end, a shadow of a racer came out of the haze, just in time to duck in the doorway.
Riding these long days I have a lot on my mind. The future, the past, Lynn Pletcher, the amazing Robert Bender, my lifes path. None of it makes sense and I am not sure it should, but I know I am extremely blessed to be able to share such days with these people, even if silently suffering wheel-to-wheel, this is the road that was meant for me.
I read somewhere on facebook a friend commented: "Robert thank you for giving Hulda Crooks cool corners." Ain't that the truth! He always had a shovel hidden out in the canyon I think so he could tidy up the burms and jumps. I loved that he had some of the most rad experiences, but to him, they were nothing to blog about. Just another day spent with good people. One to never boast, gloat, or make another racer or rider feel insufficient. I like his style.
I have been so impressed with the outpouring of love from his core friends and family. From organizing massive mountain bike rides, raffles at DH races, monster garage sales, and frequent beverage and pizza nights at Jersey's all in his support. This past Saturday, the 12 Hours of Temecula held a category just for Robert, Bike for Bender. I am so glad he was able to experience these selfless actions over the past few months.
Ride on my friend, and let's go hit some sweet jumps!
Tuesday, November 9
Wednesday, November 3
Before...and 5 hours later...
My first lunch attempt was Moroccan Lentils - pretty great. I ate them with Kasha grain or Quinoa, awesome for lunch on the run at work!
But todays, is completely legit. I made a bunch of brown rice in the rice cooker and added this black bean concoction to it. AWESOME! Not bad with a bunch of fresh veggies, avocado, lime juice, tomatoes, cilantro and scallions!And 6 hours later and a trip through the blender:
Thursday, October 7
· Includes trainingpeaks.com account to log and track workouts.
· Daily training plans based on lifestyle, goals, and training zones uploaded to trainingpeaks.com weekly by your coach.
· Field testing (where necessary) to determine power and heart rate training zones.
· Weekly to daily contact with your coach regarding training, goals, schedules (see individual packages for greater detail).
· Weekly to daily review of power and/or heart rate files by your coach (see individual package for greater detail).
Friday, September 17
Wednesday, September 15
I think I have raced at Bonelli for about 5 years...always different course, conditions, and competition. My favorite course was one that took us by one of the Ragging Waters slides, and you could almost feel the splash of the water and you could definately see the whites of the eyes of the kids as the screamed down the tube! That year my cranks fell off, so I ran two laps. I'm pretty stubborn, I don't quit easy. Probably pretty stupid if you think about it.
I headed to Bonelli Park to race the State XC champs this past weekend for a few reasons. I like to ride my bike, I like to see my friends, and I like to punish myself. Ok, i didn't mean to punish myself, it just happened. It seems that the season took it's toll on my about 3 days prior to the race, rendering me done and done. But I knew the course was going to be a fun one a lots of people to catch up with. I was bummed to not join Brian and the juniors and other teammates at the CBR State Crit Champs, where he won the elite 1/2/3 overall, but knew it was the right decision.
The energy was electric and high fives and hugs from so many great friends well-worth the entry fee! To see Patty, all the registration staff, Sharon, get a massive bear-hug from the newly-healed Justin and to catch up with Heather and Jason, and Allison both off amazing exeriences at Breck Epic and World's was totally rad! Along with Vanessa and the whole Backbone crew, running into Alexis and Essense, all was good. A huge thank you to all the racers and friends that were so gracious to me, it made me really happy to have such a warm welcome back to the dirt, although Roger kept yelling "roadie" at me. Awkward.
I was pumped to start on pavement, my new friend, and hammer for all I had for a few pedal strokes. Allison wrote in her blog something to the effect of the first 7 minutes were the best. Good stuff because that's the only time we were together, and I crashed hard with a fantastic Endo at 6:37....nice wake up call Roadie....I spent the rest of the race talking to friends (literally), giving water to a dehydrated racer, getting another racer to sit on my wheel so I could pull them out to the finish because they were bonking, pretty much anything that could keep me from actually racing. Because if I revved it up and smashed it, I probably wouldn't have made it home from Smelly, let alone work to on Monday. Oh when I did rev it up, the pace didn't change much at all.
I loved the switchy single track through the woods where I saw Tonya Bray taking photos and other friends cheering and heckling us along with Lisa Crowe who made the wiser decision of the two of us and just came to cheer. I just threw a fist pump, hit some jumps and kept having a blast on the fun course.
My favorite part was getting a neutral feed from Elle Williams, a little lady I had the privilage to ride with in July when I did a ladies clinic up at a Rim Nordic race. She is all but 11 years old I think and was so excited to hand me off a cup of water! Now THATS what its all about!
Funny things happened out there too. Too many to recount, but i did set up a very ghetto feed for myself on a concrete can for bbq coals. It was just out of arms reach so I had to stop each lap to get the feed. I would ride by all the kids, talk to them about their race, then clip out and switch bottles all while the same lady sat about a foot away and just stared at me. For 5 laps. So odd.
I never have my own photos, so I steal them from facebook:
Heidi Bowen is super rad, I have traveled and raced with her for probably 5 years now! And yes that is dirt on my head and no I am not going bald. Thanks.
Dean Swank, one classy guy! Always positive, happy and helpful! And an amazing athlete! His lady Laura took these pictures for us!
When in doubt, I bust out some cool socks. thanks for the pics Laura!
Wednesday, September 8
It was delicious.
If you closely, there is a slight amount of bling near my sick Baby-G watch...
Brian actually kept a secret from me! He is a total jabber-jaw, and I am "into everything" which means I am way too much in the Know. But, alas, we planned a party for his Brother Nich fresh back from Afghanistan. I looked around at the group and thought wow, these are some great people here, and also though oh man, what a killer vibe tonight! DUH!!!!
In a rambling that only a video could capture, Brian asked me to marry him, and I said "what are you doing" and then I said "Yes." :) Pretty awesome stuff.
And no, there is no date yet, and no that does not mean we are engaged to be engaged. That's what 16 year olds do...please. It means we are busy and maybe this weekend over a large salad we will discuss those plans. Or just book a trip to the Giro and celebrate in style...
Monday, August 16
People also think that teachers are lazy. Mid February, while being at school up to 16 hours a day, training in the dark, I just keep my eye on the prize of June 10th and the slight chance of sleeping in so I can potentially recharge and get ready to raise your kids again for you in the fall.
This summer, however, there was little down time. It seemed as if we were heading to races one to two days a weekend from San Diego to Lodi in search of competition, learning, and punishment. In the car and through the short weeks I studied stacks of books about training, heart rate versus power training, biomechanics and kinesiology. When it was all said and done, I walked away with a USA Cycling Level 3 Coaching Certification and an ACE Personal Training Certification. And promptly reported back to my day job. So yes, I am very lucky to have had the opportunity to study during the day for such things. Not to mention train mid-day, work on team the team website, send emails, surf through Trainingpeaks.com and help my fellow teammates develop as riders and athletes.
Read between the lines, I had a stellar summer.
Thursday, July 29
Tuesday, July 20
Tuesday, June 29
Wait a second, I won another race! I headed up to Big Bear to race one of my favorite courses. Probably has something to do with all the extended fire-road climbs, but I also had a blast in the technical single track and even got to do some mud riding! Man, it seems like forever since that has happened. From the altititude, to the dust, to the fun, it was an awesome day. There were 4 pro women out, but Allison Mann, assuming the fields would be as small as usual, jumped in to race with the cat 1 men! Good for her because she stuck it them! Super cool! That allowed myself, Dorothy Wong and Deirdre York to ride for the pro podium. I've gotta say though, it was so awesome to get high-fives and hugs from ao many old friends! Quite the recharge I needed!
I remember riding UP Fern trail 2005 12 Hours at the Summit! Where I first met Tinker! Thanks for the cheers and pictures from Justin Mann! Pumped here to be riding down it and on Uncle Greg's loaner Superfly 29er 2x10!! FUN FUN FUN!!
This Podium is really cool because it spans three generations of pro mountain biking women!
Back in 2007, racing the NORBA Final in Aspen, Deirdre won the jr expert womens overall title, and I won the overall national title 19-29 yr old women expert. Its always fun to catch back up with these gals and see where life has taken them! And we haven't changed a bit, have we. ;)
Being that our team is lacking a high number of female racers, sometimes my best option is to race with the masters or cat 3 men. Here I had the pleasure of racing with Papa Breyer and Rick in a cat 3 race. It is always fun to get to ride with more of my teammembers and to learn from them. Men's fields are a weird "animal" though, I will have to delve into that topic later on.
Climbing at Sisquoc, my favorite picture I think, channeling Jens...
Sisquoc Road Race. I was so excited to be able to stretch my legs in an event longer than a 40-50 minute crit. To get to ride hard, climb hills, and work with my teammate Cynthia. This race was hot and windy and tough. I was super pumped that I was able to finishe 7th, close behing the lead group. Then I got DQ'ed. No, not a Blizzard at Dairy Queen, DISQUALIFIED. I pretty much blame Brian for this.
There was about 300 meters to go. I had attacked and broken away from a group of 5 and heading in solo for my 7th place finish. Then the pro/1/2/ men's break passed me. That means I get neutralized. But then they sat up and slowed down, blocking me in and pushing me towards the gravel. Brian was in the group of 6 and was right beside me, so I told him to go away. Hahah. He tried to get the guys to let me by, then just motivated me to finish. But to the officials, it looked like I finished with the men. Even though they had like 60 more miles to go and I was riding hard with 8th place in hot pursuit and not sure if I should sit up and wait, pass them on the left or what. But the finish was right there! So I protested, extremely politely and pled my case. They hand wrote me in the results and said I was good to go after a 20 minute discussion, only to see on the official results online, I did not finish. High-Fives all around guys! Thanks a billion for the great work out and the ability to hit my PowerMeter High Score.
I will be back next time.
Thursday, June 10
The other great news is the heat. We have ramped up our "overheating prevention" in some very key ways. Last Sunday on my high-noon mountain bike ride (YES I still have one and I swear, if someone else asks me if I still do, or if I ever ride it, I will kick them in the shin and run away) I put a bag of ice in my jersey up between my shoulder blades. Although it soiled my outfit leaving sweat/water/dirt lines like Dr. Seuss bathtub rings, it whittled my core down to about 101 degrees. Thank goodness.
With the shipment of our new kits, I also have an improved tan-line. My previous jersey (yes singular - I wore 1 kit, since last June. No bueno.) was a hand-me-down that the owner had cut the sleeves Bam-Bam style. Now I actually boast cuffs on my sleeves, thus tattooing those ever coveted tan lines. Genius.
In the theme of Giving Back, which seems to be rampant in the cycling community this season, I took a few newbie Junior Boys out to a mountain bike race. On a Tuesday (while Brian had his Junior Ducklings - i hope they don't know we call them that - here in Redlands for some skills training). Here's the cool thing. Unlike our local Tuesday Night Championships, you actually pay an entry fee, get cool stuff, have a closed course, course marshalls, droves of fans, and free food afterwards (if you count Clifbars and cookies) All in just under 1:30 minutes. Not bad, not bad at all.
The boys were pumped! Locked them in the team car and headed to the OC where the temps are 15 degrees lower and the middle school chicks 15 degrees hotter (so the young lads said). The course suited us all well in that it was a figure 8 with fast laps, crossing through start-finish 2 times per lap so I could see the whites of their eyes each time we crossed. The venue had a slight cyclo-cross feeling, with tight turns, sponsor pits and BBQ on the grill while the music pumped. Pretty much one of the most well put together and run Mountain Bike events I have been to in quite some time. Oh wait, I haven't raced my mountain bike since August....anyways, lets just say it was Super Sick!
Check it out if you get a chance! Over the Hump Series
They even had a photog out and pictures are online if you want to check them out and see the course a bit better. Some hills
And a way cool bridge!
Does anyone know how to get a sponsorship from Oxyclean? My white kit...dirt...sweat...I wonder what its gonna look like after my first crash....that's gonna be hot.
Friday, May 21
I was pretty bummed to be so tired the whole time. With minimal sleep, pre-5am wake up calls day after day, I was off my A-game! All good though! Here is my little intermediate group! We worked on shifting, pacelines, double pace lines, eating and drinking on the bike and hill climbing! So much fun! And they all had a blast! And that was just the beginning of their fun day!
Big Bear Update: Dan Rendler saved my day Friday by delivering these to me at Women's Clinic Signin! They phonetics is hilarious and the notes so funny and kind! Kids writing thank you notes are the best! I sure hope they can get over to the finish of the ToC stage today and get even more excited about riding bikes!
Saturday night, i had to skip an important bday party to spend 2 hours at the grocery store finalizing my foods for the trip! I realized I would be driving the Uhaul truck to Morro Bay with all the kids junk in it, so why not throw the Mountain Bike in?!?! PERFECT!!!!!
Sometimes I act out of character. and the kids LOVE it! I wanted to make shortcake from scratch but come on, its a bunch of 10th graders, really. So I fillet Twinkies for Strawberry-Twinkie-Cakes!!!
I also got the kids to eat Family Style, like on HOOK!
Monterey! I loved the aquarium! Sea Horses were rad, with their Male-giving-birth way of life, the Otters were out in full force, and the fact that I was NOT racing the Sea Otter Classic...made all ok. Just kidding. But the fact that I have raced all over the Left Coast, made my navigation skills come in quite handy. Who would have thought!
And Dez and I showing how to be friends on the bike at the clinic. I am very grateful to my solid, great friends right now that have really helped keep me on my toes, see things in logical perspective, and teach me how to race my bike, and be a good influence on others!
Friday, May 14
I suppose I should write about some epic racing, but a 17 and 15th place this weekend, doesn't really warrant blogging. However, Saturday marked the first crit I have not been yelled at during, so I thought that was pretty bloggable.
Thankfully, Sunday the yelling resumed. Once again, not much to report about.
I thought this picture was reportable simply because I was in the drops, not on the brakes, and away from people. All quite weird and foreign feelings.
After this race, in the LBC, the Gnome and I got to spend some quality time with Carson Miller in the ER. Good job Miller! Just kidding. But we were quite impressed at the cleanliness of the facility and rapid attention he received. Snoops home town is cooler than I thought. Thankfully, all his wounds were superficial and everything checked out.
In the gym with my Gary Fisher Pro Caliber, Gary Fisher Cronus Ultimate, and Kyle with his tricked out chairs! A HUGE thank you to bike Sponsor Gary Fisher! They have gone above and beyond with our sponsorship this year. Complete WOW!
And lastly, today was Class Challenge at School. Being the Sophmore sponsor, we got to perform a 10 minute skit for the Justice League! I think we did a pretty good job and really hope the HOURS!!!! of work pays off in the end!
Friday, May 7
Monday, April 26
Maybe it is because of my mountain bike background, where battles were fought and won deep within the cover of the forest while I raced against the clock and against myself and my will to overcome. Or because while playing college basketball, Coach Jesse Clark instilled in us the belief and the understanding to not only be gracious in victory, but also in defeat. The occasions of success, for me at least number-wise, do not come about all that frequently. But it left me thinking none the less, that if I summed my success up in my printable results, I would fail. To every win there is a tale to tell, to every 20th place there is an equal and just as important story to be told. And no, I am not thinking this because of, or going to tell you the sad tale of my Out The Back 15th place finish on Saturday. ; )
To bring this complain-fest full-circle, which of course is the point here, I am going to high light what we as a cycling team does in our "free time". We volunteer. And not because we get anything for it (because technically that of course would NOT be volunteering) but because we love it, and it is part of our innate nature.
8th Annual PossAbilities Triathlon
5:05ish AM helping a handcyclist with his BRIGHT GREEN racing chair! Yes, I fixed my hair and drank half a pot of coffee before 4am. I had to start the day off RIGHT!
Once I woke up and got going, I had a complete blast! I saw old school-mates, students of my own, former and present teammates and people I used to teach Spin Class to as well as locals I ride with on the group rides. I was so stoked to get stationed in the transition zone where I could throw Hi-Fives to everyone and help them out when need-be!
Fermin and Beth! Rolled in with a smile and left with even larger smiles! Brian got to ride his scooter next to Beth because he was lead moto for the run course, where he chatted her up and got some info! She told him of her injury and how just last Monday, she completed the Boston Marathon. Fermin suffered a stroke in 2003 and his right side is now paralyzed. His movements reminded a lot of how my sister now walks due to her illness so I instantly had a soft spot for him in my heart. I helped them move some of their goods and instantly got Sherpa Status. Now THATS an honor.
I didn't get this gentleman's name, but watching him complete all three portions of the event was amazing.
And the future! Liam and his brother did the complete tri and were completely SUCCESSFUL. Because they finished. Because they had fun. Because they are learning to push the limits and find a healthy balance to life. Because they are athletes.
I found Fermins website and this is what I learned:
Thursday, April 22
While in New Zealand I took matters into my own hands and purchased some pretty rad dresses, for dirt cheap. I had my trusty Sister there to lie to me "no, your butt does not look big in that" so that I ended up buying three.
I then realized my 5th grade girls class has some killer day-glow earrings. Further inquiry led me to the Mall and a Claires store, where for under $12.00, i walked out with 10 pairs of 1980's best representation of neon.
Then enter the Shoes. Joy, stop wearing Dansko clogs. Joy, no flip-flops allowed. Your gonna wear that? I did the best shopping i could, online, and found some hot pink and hot green pumps. Perfect. and for $11.59 and pair, plus shipping, bring it! My students also suggested the cheapest yet more durable fluorescent nail polish to complete my "look."
So to all my happy-fashion-helpers, and big thank you for helping me assimilate into the 30-something crowd. Well sort of. For some reason, I am always "brighter and bigger" than any and everyone around me. I stick out like a sore thumb no matter what...
Fellow teachers at the Spring Formal. Sporting dress from NZ, bright Green themed accessories. And a slight tan line.
Bachelorette party. Yeeeaaahhhh....(I could have been getting Poison Oak at Sea Otter, instead, i was getting toe blisters and belly fat in Vegas). This dress got the "Joy we can see your slip. Wait, I think that's your tan line comment." Sidenote: what is a slip and should I have one? puhlees....
But alas, some things just can not be undone. The tan lines will forever be worn as a badge of courage and pride. Yes, my thighs are horribly white. Yes, i have countless scars and blindingly white abs. But alas, it proves a point that my passion and hobbies are more than just that. Cycling and fitness and taking care of myself are a way of life and I love it. If that means that the pool deck stares aghast at my whiteness, so be it. Shun the cyclist and welcome the Muffin Tops. To each their own. For me, these tan lines are just going to get darker. Along with Day-Glow and Mohawks. I guess its just my personality!