April 30, 2012

400km = success!

Checked off #10 of my current R-12 run with a 400km ride this last weekend, and feeling good - somehow...
I credit the higher protein diet (*NOT* to be confused with a low-carb diet!!!) for outstanding recovery that has allowed me get back on the bike quickly this week, along with making yesterday's yard work not such a horrid chore.  In the past, this distance would put me firmly on the couch for at least the next day.  Yeah, I did rest and catch a few cat-naps yesterday - which helped after being awake for 25 hours by the time I got home, unpacked, showered and in bed early Sunday morning - but I wasn't totally destroyed.

Full blog post coming... I'm engaging my inner editor, so I don't (there exist pros and cons both ways) leave you with 10,000 words of filler.
What can I say now, though... it was a terrific ride, with good companions.  Made some new friends along the way, and reconnected with ones I hadn't ridden with in years.
I need to make a solid point to attend at least one of Bob's brevets every year -- the companionship of a group distance ride is just too good to pass up, after so many solo rides.  I'm talking commutes, too --- my solo:group ride ratio is WAY off-kilter, and when I think of this weekend, the last DSR, the February 200k, the January 200k, the New Year's eve ride to the Cider Mill... they are just miles ahead of the results of riding in solitude.  So, more advertisement of permanents, and more club rides, I think, are in order.

That's all for the moment --- lots to digest this week, but, the post will come.
Thanks for reading!

April 27, 2012

It's now, or not -- and, news

This time tomorrow I'll be far north of town, hopefully checking in for lunch somewhere around Pattonsburg, MO... maybe even farther north.  But, yes - as the title suggests, at least as it relates to my current R-12 run, it's now, or it's time to lay down my chips.  No chance of the latter occurring:  tomorrow's 400 kilometer brevet up into Iowa and back from north of Kansas City will satisfy my April requirement nicely.  I have a small amount of trepidation saved for the fact that I haven't ridden longer than 217km since the 2010 season, and haven't ridden 400km since 2009, but hey... gotta start sometime.  I can recover when it's over.  It will be interesting, however, to visit that frontier once again, which typifies randonneuring at longer distances:  the sun goes down, the stomach begs for more, and the legs ask "uhhh, we're supposed to stop, right?"

So, wish me luck -- should be a nice day!  Semi-epic ride report will likely follow, as usual.

In other news, a big announcement from the 'Dude Camp:  I've been invited to fill, and have accepted, a crew position for a Race Across AMerica (RAAM) rider!  If you've been reading this blog for any length of time, this is a goal I've been looking to accomplish for a while, and it feels good to have been asked.  It's one of those things, I think anyone can go to the RAAM Facebook page, or their main website, and try to actively get onto a team -- but (the last few years in particular) the timing hasn't been right until now.  

I'll be crewing for local ultra-rider Alex Shnyra, and his rider number is #430.  He's racing in the solo division, so it's 3,000 miles, from Oceanside, CA. to Annapolis, MD., non-stop.  We've ridden together several times in the past, I know his style and tactics, plus, we already talk on a regular basis, so it represents a great fit - and I'm humbled by the amount of faith he places in my abilities.  I, and the rest of the team, will be learning a lot over about 10 days of racing, starting June 13th, 2012.  

So, please keep en eye out -- I'll likely have more information on that subject in these pages before long, and will *TRY* to update from the road to some extent... though, I have a feeling those opportunities might be few and far between.  The real source will be the RAAM pages, the video updates, live race coverage, blogs, and tickers... their media set-up is extensive, so I'll wave at the camera if I get a chance.  It's going to be an interesting time... to be sure!

April 13, 2012

Checking in for April

April is half over in a few days... yikes.... and still no R-12 ride for this month.  Yet.
Today was to have been my day, attempting the 300km "Hell of the North" permanent from Liberty, MO. to Albany, MO. and back.
Hills, rough roads... and my wind chimes haven't quieted down since this morning, clanging still in the southern winds which haunt that already difficult route up north.
Thanks to my alarm clock/phone freaking out sometime in the night, however, I didn't make the bell -- slept like a log instead, until the wife shook me awake at 5:30am asking why I was still in the house.  Even with the generous hour buffer at the front of every permanent ride, I had only 30 minutes at that point to start a ride that was a 45 minute drive away.  Ugh.
I felt sick... but, eventually forgave myself.  And started shopping for a proper alarm clock.  

Still, perhaps it's better this way.  After a sorta rough March 200k, I wasn't really in the mood for the thunderstorms that were ravaging the northland when I checked radar, nor the stiff headwind that would surely punish for 90-some miles on the trip southbound after reaching Albany via 12,000 ft. or whatever of climbing.  The sun came out eventually, though, and I got more of a tame, stress-release style training ride on a local rail-trail.  Though the 52 miles I logged pales in comparison to what coulda-been, I averaged well and felt strong throughout - so, that's a plus.  Wrapped up the ride with a conversation with another cyclist packing up after his outing on the same trail - so, I wasn't alone thinking today was a good day for this.

So, R-12... still half a month left, and the big 400km brevet up into Iowa on the 28th.  That's cutting it close... but, it'll have to be the one.  I can't see flushing this after 9 straight.... no way. Not even a thought.  Sometimes things don't work out... but, on a tough route, with stiff winds, and on this particularly "lucky" day, perhaps there is an unknown blessing hiding underneath my personal disappointment.  I'll never know ... and that could be a good thing.  Win some... miss some...

Stay tuned.

April 2, 2012

Very spur of the moment

It's April, and that means it's time for 30 Days of Biking!
I actually signed up this year, and I hope to get at least a couple miles every day.  
There are schedule challenges with school/work/kids, and geography vs. time makes things tight for the bike.... alas, even if it means getting home at o'dark-thirty, tired from a long day, I still plan to get at least 30 minutes of riding, even if it's a quick errand.  That's the whole thing:  30 days of Biking... just don't miss a day in April!  While there will be a good dose of short rides, I also have 300 and 400km rides scheduled this month... so, it will be a little strange.  

Stay tuned!
I also at least plan on a FB post-per-day, too... to keep track.

To those registered, and already enjoying day-two -- good luck!