Posts Tagged 'mountains'

Old La Honda(less) Odyssey

Old La Honda is the hill in the Bay Area. Its not that long (3.35 miles), or that steep (15% grade at points, 7.8% avg), but it is the hill that every cyclist in a 30 mile radius knows their best time up. People climb this hill repeatedly, trying to improve their time for boasting rights amongst their geeky cyclist friends. Some do it weekly! Some probably more frequently than that. Certain cycle teams place you in ride groups based solely on your best time up this hill. Its a bay-area-cyclist-cultural-monumental-climb-thing. A rite of passage if you will. And I’ve never been up it. (feel free to recoil from the screen in horror)

That’s right, after nearly a year of riding on a bike out here, I am required to claim the title “cyclist” only in quotes in front of my bikenerd friends, as I have no Old La Honda personal best time. Lucky for me, the TNT winter training Ride 8 was going to change all that. An odd combination of surgery recovery timing and a nasty bout of California winter rains moved the 70 mile Old La Honda Odyssey to February 2nd; just three short days after I was cleared by the orthopedics people to ride again. Coaches note was to show up at Foothill college at 7am that Saturday morning rain or shine. Too many rides had already been cancelled for the season, and we’d at the very least sacrifice some sleep on the off chance that the weather would cooperate. So, show up we did.

While the sky was overcast, it wasn’t pouring down rain, so the team rolled out as planned. Knowing that my arm would be weak after surgery (especially in the cold weather), I tried to break the ride mentally into small goals. The first few miles are almost always cake, so I set goal one at 30 miles. Goal two would be the first climb of the day up Altamont. Then rest stop three…etc. The first goal was easy. Goal two, however, a bit more challenging. Now, compared to a lot of climbs we do in the area, Altamont is short. I’ll give it that. What no one tells you about Altamont though (at least not anyone who to convince you that you can ride up it) is that Altamont is steep. Like 18% steep in parts. Like you could walk faster up this hill than I will be able to ride it steep.

It doesn’t start out that bad. In fact, looking at the hill, you think to yourself…”this isn’t going to be that bad! I can see the top!” And then you hit the beginning of the actual incline… and then you hit the first curve… and then (if you’re me) a truck magically appears 6 inches off your rear wheel and scares the bejesus out of you. So you stop breathing, realize you can’t possibly turn that crank over without gasping like a fish for breath (and possibly popping your guts out through your spine in the process) …and you frantically pull into a driveway madly trying to unclip before falling over, since you were going a whopping 4 miles an hour to begin with. At this point you’re (I’m) approximately a quarter of the way up the hill. Freakin awesome.

Two stops and one almost stomach-emptying-heave later, I’m at the top. Go me. On the bright side, whatever fear I had of Old La Honda had pretty much entirely faded in the face of the horrid, steep, gut-wrenching, Hill-o-Doom that was Altamont. I’m basically spent at this point and have to re-GU before rolling on towards rest stop two. Now it is at the second rest stop where I seriously consider sagging out. The cold damp weather had progressed from overcast to drizzling, and my arm was aching like mad. I wasn’t really able to support any weight on the gimp-arm and wasn’t sure I could take another 30 miles with all of me leaning on the right side. Tired and wet as I was, the allure of finally passing into Bay Area Cycling Adulthood was great, and I decided to push on again. Rest stop three was just passed the Old la Honda climb…I could always SAG out there (new mental cycling badge acquired), right?

Well, it was a good theory. Unfortunately, for once, the weatherman was dead on in his rain prediction. Overcast in the morning and full on rain by noon played out almost to the minute. Our team rolled up to Portola Road, looked at the thick grey fog encasing the top of our mountain destination through rain spattered glasses and decided that even if we could reach the summit the descent would be too treacherous to risk. We were all pretty bummed to have to skip the hill (me especially as one of the only people in the state never to have done the climb), but even I can’t deny that “safety first” is a pretty darn good rule.

By rest stop three, I was toast. I may have missed the second big climb for the day, but I was rained on, missing guts, and barely over surgery. The last 12 miles of the ride were going to be cut short anyway (taking the shortcut back because of the weather), so I opted to take the SAG route home. I’d more than surpassed my original 30 mile goal and my Altamont goal. Giving up on Old la Honda glory had been difficult and even a little heartbreaking. Letting go of the “I rode the last 10 miles in the pouring rain on a bum arm” glory was easy in comparison. The good (by weird cycle standards) new is, I live close enough to the benchmarking hill to give it another run anytime. I’ll get those bragging rights yet! At least amongst really slow, easily impressed people…

Motion Based ride data

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No One Here but Me and the Deer

I missed hill repeats last Sunday. There are a lot of things I could blame my absence on…arm, cold, general dislike of descents…but in reality, Charles knocked the plug for the alarm clock out of the wall. I have no natural affinity for waking up early, so it was full on 10am before I discovered the issue; much too late to get ready and show up for repeats. Even knowing that the possibility of me waking up sans-alarm did not exist, I was pretty bummed to have missed the event. As penance (and because I seriously need the extra training), I decided to take my bike out at lunchtime on Monday and do repeats solo.

Monday morning in San Jose was bright and sunny. Apparently the sun has limits on how far it can shine though, as the sky was completely overcast and dreary by the time I reached the park at the base of Mt. Eden. This, of course, meant that I managed to under-layer once again…but not so much as to prevent me from riding, just enough to make me moderately uncomfortable. As far as clothes go, I just can’t seem to win.

In addition to being cloudy, the area was damp (bordering on wet) from rain that had rolled through the night before. I thought to turn back – shaky descents on dry ground are bad enough – but decided to make at least one trip up the hill before heading home. Heck, I was already wearing the gear…might as well make use of it. And so I set out to climb. The road was basically empty. I saw one other cyclist (or what I assume that blur of blue and green spandex on wheels was) as he blew by me on the hill, never to appear again (I’m guessing he went down the backside as opposed to turning around for repeats). And then I saw the deer.

At first, there was just one. It jumped into the road on my first climb and bounded across before I could really react to what I saw. Coming back down extremely cautiously due to the water, I caught sight of a white tail flicker headed into the bushes. Fortuitously, I had brought my camera thinking that I might take a few shots from the summit on a nice “sunny” day. Those didn’t really work out, but I did manage to catch this guy on my first descent.

Temporarily distracted, I ended up doing two more laps up Mount Eden looking for more deer. Hey, there were no cars, no cyclists and fuzzy animals. I’m pretty sure that’s just about as good as hill repeats get! On the second trip down, I skid to a stop just in time to watch a whole family of deer walk through the woods. I had a hard time getting a decent photo of all six, but the one below has four and is reasonably clear. Can you spot ’em all?

The third descent yielded no deer, nor any reasonably cute substitute (No the guy driving the Hummer in the middle of the road didn’t do it for me. Bastage.). Pair that with some really tired legs and an increasingly clouding sky and I decided to head for home. I figure that three repeats all the way to the top is fairly close in effort to the 4-5 partials I would have gotten out with Coach Don. I threw the bike in the truck and drove straight to Chipotle. Yeah, I took it to go (not so fun eating solo), but it was phenomenally tasty knowing that I earned it.

I’m not dead…

just injured. Long story short – in case you hadn’t heard – I had a crash on the Half Moon Bay ride last Saturday and broke my left clavicle and ulna (aka elbow). Had surgery to pin the elbow on Tuesday and have spent the vast majority of the week passed out from Vicodin in the recliner (signficantly less fun than it sounds). Final word from the doc says I’m off bike for 10 weeks at a minimum, so I’ll be in Hawaii solely in cheering capacity this year. Good news is, I can roll my fundraising and participate in one of the other upcoming seasons. Not sure which event I’ll pick yet, but I expect you all to start sending the sympathy donations any minute now (yes, that means you)…or will I have to post pictures of the road rash first? Don’t think I won’t!

Wittier, more entertaining version to come later, as soon as I master the art of one-handed typing.

Oh! And thanks to everyone who came out to the Aqui fundraising event. Sorry I couldn’t be there, but Charles was able to stop by for a bit and said it looked like a great turnout. You guys rock! I’ll let you know how much we raised as soon as I hear from them. I really appreciate all your support!

Stranded

This post actually changed names in my head four times before I started writing it. Now none of my cute/catchy titles seem to fit, but I wanted to list them out anyway (entertainment value?)

  • Now I Know how my Car Feels
  • Shannon was Still Worse
  • Down for the Count
  • Thank god for Coca-Cola

I write this post today from my house, stranded with no mode of transportation other than my own two legs. Well, theoretically I could rig up some sort of dog sled system that utilizes the wheeled cooler…but that sounds like an awful lot of work, and my dogs are kinda lazy. Moving on. As of today, I am out one bike, one car, up 6 bruises, and down (likely) a few hundred dollars. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

The Calaveras ride Saturday morning started out much the same as any other. We rolled out around 8:30am, feeling good and enjoying the cool morning air. After a quick pit stop around mile 12, Team TBD was back on the road and ready to attack our first climb – Palomares. Just looking at the route sheet, I knew the ascent was going to be tough. Our hill repeats on Mt. Eden are a whopping .7miles up each time; Palomares looked to be almost FIVE MILES long. Holy owie! We all downshifted into granny gears and tried to keep up the chatter as we started to climb.

Surprisingly, our team stayed together pretty well for the first couple miles. Everyone was talking and joking, and the overall mood was pretty upbeat. After the 12th or so “just around the next corner” joke…it ceased to be quite as fun. Still, I’m proud to say, despite the rising temperatures and demoralizing, deceptive turns, our entire team made it to the top in the saddle – and very close together. It was one of those “gah coaches are evil or obviously insane, but we CAN do this” type moments. This euphoria was to live about halfway down the descent.

After a quick rest stop at the Palomares summit (thanks SAG!), our team set off down the backside of the hill. I’d heard that this was a pretty fast descent, and was really looking forward to topping that darn 35mph mark. Rolling down the hill went something like…32
…34
…35
OW Mother @!#@!#!!! (bug to the forehead at 35 mph. That freakin’ HURTS! No wonder my car always makes that unhappy “bonk” noise when big bugs smack its face.)
…37 – almost there!!
…39 – oh I’m so fast!
…Zero. Stupid shiny new Garmin flew off right at the 40mph marker. Had to stop, reverse (in the highest, most painful gear ever) and spend a full 5 minutes hunting. Thanks much to Gloria for finally locating the thing – before it managed to be squashed by oncoming traffic!

And so, with the best part of the descent behind me, I got back on the bike and tried to get up some speed. Somewhere around 32mph, I had to slam on the brakes again! I narrowly missed hitting a baby spotted bambi, which would have been bad for him and as well as me (not to mention the fact that Mike Squirrel-Bane would ever let me live that down…assuming I survived!). Again came the mental comparisons to a car – I mean who ever heard of a bike hitting a deer?

Compared to the five preceding miles, the next ten were all but boring. The ride from the bottom of Palomares to rest stop two was interrupted only by a potty stop at a hotel, and a dropped chain on the way out. Oh. There were those soul-sucking “flat tire” (aka false flat) miles which, in the full-on sunshine, all but crushed the remainder of my spirit. Hooray for riding a whopping 10mph and wondering the whole time why the hell it feels so hard! Temperatures had risen significantly by the time we hit that second rest stop, and I was definitely feeling a bit…wilted…in the heat. I scarfed down a full four pieces of watermelon, drank an absolute ton, and got ready to head out again.

The paceline started to fall apart by the time we hit Calaveras – even before the hill. I think everyone was tired, and there was absolutely no cover from the sun. Those 6-8 miles were punctuated with a lot of “gap” calls as people’s energy levels wavered in the heat (not to mention distance). We did manage to get it pulled back in line and hit the Calaveras climb together.

Calaveras was tough. I had to stop once to loosen my shoes, as my feet had swollen with the heat and sweat, causing them to go completely numb (not a fun feeling). I got back in the saddle, determined to finish the damn hill on the bike. Everyone had really spread out on this climb, which was probably better for me as I needed to count in my head to keep my breathing steady (weird, but true). The hill has minimal tree cover at best, so the entire 4ish mile ascent was a combination of super slow pedaling in the shade followed by a quicker cadence in the sunny patches – speeding up to the next piece of shade. I thought I was going to pass out on the bike from the heat, just as I saw the blue tent of rest stop three.

I gave myself an mental shove, and all but crawled into the rest stop. Food and drink were helpful. I had no idea how much I adored Coca-Cola until that first swallow at the top of the hill. Seriously, it’s the best thing ever. Soda, oranges and a couple well-placed ice cubes, and I started to think that maybe I could finish this ride afterall. Gloria and Gloria both decided to stop the ride there – I’m sure the heat was a big factor in their decision – but with newly filled (and iced) water bottles I was determined to go on.

My muscle control wasn’t great coming out of the parking lot. I dropped my bike (and half of me) into the dirt trying to get back on the road, but rationalized that it didn’t count as a fall, as my top half hadn’t really gone down. Hey! Only my one leg was even really dirty! My brake hood was seriously jacked up, but everything shifted properly, so I felt OK to continue the ride. Little did I know…

What no one really tells you about the Calaveras climb is that you still have a good ways to go up even after the rest stop. You do this entire hill, take a break, only to have more hills to climb. So mean! I was trucking along slowly in the very very hot sun, when I decided I needed to unclip and grab a drink. I found a shady spot, stopped and sucked down half a bottle of water before deciding that I could and would finish the ride. Heck there were only maybe 3 more miles of these mini climbs! Coach Keith and I took off again, complaining casually about the newly paved road and its inherent mess of gravel which was pelting us from pretty much all angles.

And then I was done. I was riding along, convinced I’d make it the entire way, chatting and whining, when fate intervened. I tried to turn the crank and went down hard on my left side in the middle of the road. I couldn’t unclip, couldn’t explain what happened. I just knew my foot had hit a brick wall, and something was wrong. Further inspection revealed that my rear derailleur was now sticking up in the air and had gone through my rear wheel spokes. Awesome. A few minutes and minor amounts of fiddling later, it was determined that the part was broken and I’d have to SAG out.

I could have cried. I had just talked myself back into this ride in the evil heat, and now my bike was completely out of commission. Our best guess is that an ill-placed rock flew up from the road and somehow lodged itself in the derailleur, which didn’t work out so well when I tried to pedal. Siiiiiigh. No one had cell reception where I fell, so Scott and Devan rode on ahead, promising to send back the SAG truck. I sat my scuzzy, dirty, sweaty self in the shade, debating whether or not to throw my bike off the side of the mountain, and tried to chill out (literally and figuratively speaking).

Mike came with the truck, and within minutes I was back in the starting parking lot. My poor busted bike was loaded into my vehicle quickly, and I just paced blacktop – fuming. Realistically, I know that there was nothing I could have done differently that would have allowed me to finish the ride; but it was so disappointing. The hard part was over! So frustrating. Patty swears that my anger at not being able to finish is a sign that I am now really a cyclist…some rite of passage sort of thing. Personally, I think the fact that I’m already jones-ing to ride again is a more tell-tale (and slightly more positive) signal. I just hope that I’m back on the road in time for Half Moon Bay this weekend! Charles is dropping the bike off tonight, as my car is apparently out of brake fluid and unsafe for driving. Yay fun. Anyway, I should know the extent of the repairs (time and cost wise) soon. Wish me luck!


MotionBased Data – Calaveras Ride 8/4/07
Distance: 50.15 mi

Time: 4:24:28

Avg MPH: 11.4

Max MPH: 40.4

Let’s TP His House!

When Coach Keith says he “Is Not Your Buddy”, he means it! Even with the titular warning sitting in bold font at the top of the route sheet, I feel like I came into Saturday’s ride somewhat unprepared (at least mentally). Now, I did learn something from last week’s ride, and did a decent amount of carbo-loading at Mama Mia’s in Campbell Friday night. I went ahead and ate another Clif Bar on the way to the start point, and was feeling pretty good by the time we were ready to roll out.

The ride started out easy enough. Hilton, Gloria and I (about half of Team TBD) set out together from the Los Gatos High School parking lot. We made it all the way to the second step of the directions before missing the turn onto Kennedy and adding a wrong turn onto Shannon, which tacked a good 1.3 miles onto our trip without even trying. Awesome. We walked our bikes over a crosswalk, backtracked a bit and found the right road. Of course, this meant my cyclocomputer distances would never again match up with the sheet. FYI – having to add 1.3 to all written distances is a pretty good test as to whether or not you have a “case of the stupids”.

We hit our first climb on Kennedy, and overall it was not that bad. There were a couple times when Hilton said something like “that’s it?” well before the top, but I knewthat Keith wouldn’t have marked it a hill unless normal people would view it as some sort of mini-death situation. Still, all three of us made it up the hill in the saddle (with one break in a driveway for water and socializing with some other teammates). Too bad the same can’t be said for the descent.

I got to the bottom having made up my slow climb time by speeding passed Hilton on the downhill. Apparently I should have gone a bit slower, if only to watch said teammate take a tumble right into the bushes! Thankfully, Hilton came out of the situation unscathed, save for some seriously torqued handlebars. Ten minutes and some multi-tool action later, we were back on the road – handlebars once again facing front.

Gloria, Hilton and I took advantage of the wide bike lane out on Almaden to start practicing our pacelining a bit more. Granted, it was a darn short line, but it was good to get more comfortable riding close together, keeping a steady pace, calling gap, etc. We had a pretty good ride all the way out to the hill at McKean. Yes, it IS a hill, despite Coach Keith’s obvious “accidental” omission on the route sheet. Grrrrrrrr. The three of us spread out a bit on the climb, and regrouped at the top for our first rest stop. A gel packet and some water later, we were back on the road – still feeling pretty good. The miles flew by pretty uneventfully, right up until we ran into Mike and Beth Ann.

It must have just been a day for accidents. Mike’s crank had detached itself from his bike and was dangling from his clip on the descent on McKean. He magically managed to unclip and get off the road without falling, and was walking back up the road hunting a cap piece that had fallen off before he stopped. It was definitely one of those times where it’s good to be part of the team! Hilton and Mike reattached the crank while Gloria and Beth Ann hunted the missing piece down. I mostly provided color commentary in an attempt to keep Mike’s right temple vein from exploding (hey, that was more necessary than you might think!). With everything reattached, and Mike having made a successful trial run up and down the street, we all headed back out.

Everything was fine until Croy. Mike and Beth Ann had turned off – I’m sure he wasn’t feeling up to the climb on a potentially unstable bike – so it was just Hilton, Gloria and I that headed up the hill. A quick perusal of the route sheet indicated a good three miles to the summit – or so I approximated after adding on our “warm up” miles. Much like Kennedy, it all started innocently enough. There were some ups and downs, a couple spots that were easiest standing; nothing in particular that was too hard, just long. We saw most of the rest of the team making their descent about .5 miles in. Another FYI: If Coach Keith tells you “you’re almost there”, assume you have 2.5 miles left to go. Bastage.

I have to give a big thanks to Gloria and Hilton here – they were great to ride with! We talked, joked, encouraged, and poked each other up the hill, and made it all the way to that weird little Swedish village thing without stopping. Once there we ran into Ben and debated whether or not we should continue up to the park at the very top. Consensus was – we need water and potties, so…Press on! Honestly, had I walked that last little bit of Croy into the parking lot, I probably would have been fine. Instead, despite a visible warning of a BIG increase in grade, I decided I would finish the damn thing on the bike (Gloria, Hilton and Ben are all smarter than me – just so ya know). I stood and pushed up over the last bump, and then proceeded to walk circles around the parking lot…heavily debating which sounded better – passing out or puking.

In the end, I went with “hide in the shade and whimper”. I polished off a bottle of water or so, hit the potties, and refilled for the ride back. Hey, we were halfway done…it couldn’t be too hard, right? We took turns cursing Coach Keith’s name, and debating precisely how much harm we’d be able to inflict on him when we got back and couldn’t move our legs. We met up with Coach Don at the top and discovered the terminology “GOOD CLIMB” actually meant something on the order of “Prepare to die” in coach-speak. Who knew? (Keith knew! Hence Gloria deciding that we ought to TP his house. That’s right – Gloria! I am NOT the only bad one!)

This was an out-and-back ride with a U-turn at Croy. Coach Don flew by us on the descent and shot passed us again on the flats of Uvas and McKean. We caught back up with him on the backside of McKean (which, honestly, compared to Croy really wasn’t much of a hill), before losing him again on the straightaways. So the four of us – we had kept Ben for awhile – stuck together all the way back to Almaden, averaging probably 14mph the rest of the way.

There isn’t much to tell between McKean and Shannon. Ben took off on Almaden when we stopped for new water bottles, and we didn’t see him again until we hit the school parking lot. It was windy and it was HOT. I’d blown pretty much all my energy at the top of Croy, and was really struggling to keep up even on the flats. Again, I am lucky to have had some good ride partners with me, and they put up with my slow pace (ahem “energy conserving pace”) up to the last hill.

We ran into Colin, already freshly showered and in his car at the start of Shannon. I would have cursed his existence – damn showoff being faster and cleaner than me – but he had my favorite GU in hand, so I had to forgive him. I basically inhaled the thing and got back in the saddle for our last climb of the day. All was going well until about .7mi from the summit. I went around one of the switchbacks, praying for the top, to see another steeper section winding on ahead. My brain told my legs “NO”, and I struggled to unclip before toppling.

Gloria and I both walked about 10 yards or so, joined shortly by Chris and Chris from behind. I stopped in the shade trying not to be sick knowing I couldn’t walk the rest of the way in clips (or barefoot), and that I would finish this darn ride. I rested, drank some water, bitched a lot, and then walked to a flat spot from which to take off. And I rode….the rest of the way up. Yeah, it was slow. And I sweated. And kinda wanted to die. But my tail was in the saddle at the top. Woohoo! (Now if you picture me hitting the summit, immediately unclipping, and then sitting on the hot pavement with my head between my legs – you’ve got the whole story, not just the inspirational sounding bits.)

Hilton was already at the top, so we waited for the rest of the team to get there – and for me to recover – before heading out for the last 4 miles. Colin came by again in the car, this time with cold water to share, so we all refilled before the descent. The last four miles were uneventful. There was no “second wind” coming, and it was painful to finish – but we all made it (in under 5 hours…ouchie).

Coach Keith was right about one thing. It was the hardest thing I’ve done thus far, and it is entirely possible that I’ll be a stronger rider for it. And yes, I’m pretty proud of myself for finishing. I don’t yet believe Keith when he says that I’ll forgive him after Calaveras this week, but if I don’t…I’ve got some double rolls of Charmin stacked in the closet with his name on ’em. Who’s with me?

Distance: 53.19 mi

Time: 4:15:18

Avg MPH: 12.5

Max MPH: 35.5 (that’s right – broke 35 again! Woot!)

Picture Time!

I almost forgot! Thanks to the folks at photocrazy.com, I have a few pictures of myself actually riding a bike! There was a picture spot set up along the road (presumably for the bike event that was going on at the same time as our pacelining ride). The van actually snapped actually quite a few shots of us TnT-ers as we made our laps. I haven’t managed to add a pic to my donations page yet (stupid thing refuses to upload), but I can definitely throw it up here! My favorite of the bunch is now set as my little default graphic, but I’ll probably link a couple more once I get home. See…I can ride! (Or at least I can be photographed doing something that looks suspiciously like riding as long as you can’t see the wires!)

Thirty is the new Fifteen!

Or rather…26 point some-number….or maybe twenty seven…I forget. Honestly, I may never know, as the cycle-computer that I installed Friday night (which I swear worked at the time!) couldn’t do anything other than track cadence on Saturday morning. Despite the minor technical difficulties – I did get the stupid thing working once I got home – the ride on Saturday went really well. There were no falls, no near-hits by vehicles, and, other than some extreme saddle-soreness, I felt pretty good during and after the ride. How amazingly mundane, I know.

As such, my tracking stats for last week are rather unexciting:

Number of rides: 12

Falls: holding at 2

Rides since last fall: 9 (or 15 days)

Number of bruises left: none anyplace visible

Miles traveled: ~132 (still a guesstimate…although this week we can start using real cyclo-computed numbers)

As part of my “avoid muscle cramps at all costs” routine, I’ve been testing out several types energy food/drinks. To date, I’ve found 1 that’s okay, 1 that’s tolerable, and several that I hope never to eat again. Here’s the rundown thus far:

Brand Flavor Rated (1-10) Notes
Powerbar Caramel Cookie 3 Tastes vaguely like caramel flavored cardboard rolled in dirt (for that extra gritty goodness). No thanks.
Clif Bar Black Cherry Almond 5 Should any food require this much chewing? Not a huge fan of the flavor but a vast improvement over caramel bricks
Clif Bar Crunchy Peanut Butter 6.5 Better flavor than the black cherry business. Still too much chew action.
GU Chocolate Outrage 8 Someone melted a Hershey kiss, added some salt and put it in a snazzy silver packet. Not the greatest chocolate ever (shocker) but at least it didn’t take my 45 minutes to ingest.

As for drinks, I’ve only tried the Raspberry GU20 mix…and I will NOT be trying it again. Just…ew. Given that Gatorade is already out, I think I’m going to be hard pressed to find anything I like on this front. I guess I should consider myself lucky if finding cycling food turns out to be the most challenging part of training!


What do we have here?

An often sarcastic, occasionally humorous journal of my training adventures in preparation for the Livestrong century ride. I took up cycling back in '07 in hopes of meeting new people, and, with the help of Team in Training, making my small positive difference in the world -- and haven't stopped spinning since. Follow along as my Trek road bike and I try and hash out our differences, hopefully with me upright and in the saddle.

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