Bicycle thread

Discussion in 'Sports' started by Zodiac, Jul 10, 2006.

  1. Tallbastid

    Tallbastid Let's get tropical

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    X 1,000 on the quality lid advice.

    I'm on my second Fox Flux helmet, and I freaking love it... best part is they can be bought cheap if you keep an eye out on chainlove or bicyclemob. I destroyed the first one with an over the bars, and there was no question what would replace it. My girlfriend has the same helmet and loves it as well.
  2. Ridge

    Ridge Jitenshado

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    At this point I feel beaten and my mind tries to convince the body to quit while it's ahead. When I reach down and wipe the mud from the Garmin, I see that I’m already at mile 78 and the hills seem to have a bit less grade. My legs, still reeling from the previous 5 miles of thrashing ease a bit and spin on the flat ridge top. I try to force myself to eat but I’m simply tired of shoving food in my mouth. I’m sitting at the 9 hour mark on the course and have been steadily consuming calories the entire time. I tried to pack a variety in order to trick myself that it’s different every time, but the variety has its own pattern. Everything I pull from the frame bag looks unappealing. My Camelbak contains 800 calories of liquid nutrition and it’s easier to ingest but I tire of it as well. I force 2 and a half fig newtons down my gullet and pitch the other half. It takes a few minutes to chew it and convince my body to swallow but I keep it down and march on.

    I’ve been trading positions on the course with a tandem mountain bike for the last few miles and it’s been a welcome break of conversation. The husband and wife team do many of these events and always place pretty well. They admit that this particular day has been one of the roughest to accomplish yet. I agree wholeheartedly and we ride on. They will usually pass me on long stretches of flat road where they can both power that beast but I’ll catch them on the downhill runs due to being much more responsive in curves and handling. It’s a game of leap frog as we crunch away the miles.

    Station 7 approaches around mile 85. I’ve been on a flat-ish road for some time now dodging some mud holes that would swallow and snap a front wheel. My glasses are almost completely obscured and, for some reason, my arms are aching worse than ever. What I find interesting is that I’ve completely lost any climbing muscle in my legs but I can put down some serious power and speed on the flat sections of road. I’m unsure if it’s calling different muscle groups into play or just my mind tricking the body since the road is flat but it’s a welcomed relief to see speeds in the double digits again. I’ll not go so far as to say it was a second wind… but I felt motivated for just a tiny bit and enjoyed it while I had it.

    I must say, the volunteers they find for this race are the absolute best I have ever had the pleasure of experiencing. They truly treat each and every racer like a rock star. As soon as I enter an aid station, my glasses are removed and cleaned, my camelback is taken and filled with water they retrieve my drop bag without so much as asking me for my race number. It’s just an automatic response and I am truly appreciative of their efforts. I’m told by this crew that I have only four miles of double track, then it’s a single track section for the remainder of the course. My heart sinks as all I can conjure up are my earlier spills and near misses on the previous single track sections. When your mind and body stop responding as quickly as when fresh; it makes anything with a challenge that much more precarious. Normally I would be itching to hit some single track but at 9.5 hours in the saddle, I’m hesitant to say the least.

    I motor on and hit some absolutely amazing downhill sections that are long, straight and with only sweeping turns making it easy to keep the speed up. Again, the motorcycle experience is evident as I can pass some riders through the apex of the curves as I yell which side I’m coming through. On one particularly fast and long descent, Murphy rears his fateful head. I’m edging toward the inside line of a right hander and missed seeing the small branch jutting from the shoulder. As I rail around the curve, I feel the rear grab for a split second. I don’t think much of it since I’m using every bit of focus to cleanly make a turn at speed. As the road levels out and I go to pedal, my feet spin wildly and I realize that the chain has jumped from the cranks. A few riders pass by and ask if I’m okay. I signal that it’s just a chain jump and I’ll be back on the course soon.

    Examining the carnage reveals more questions than answers. Not only has the chain jumped from the front ring, but the rear derailleur is now completely rigid and locked out to the largest cog. No matter what permutation I try, I cannot make the drive train functional again. Sitting at mile 87 and facing 13 miles of singletrack with a single speed ratio of 33:36 is not my idea of finishing strong. My shoulders slump as I realize I’ve lost any shred of finishing in a decent time. Now I just hope to cross the line under my own power without having to walk the bike. The riders that I had passed earlier now come steadily by me as I can only hit about 6mph on the flat sections. I can gather speed on the downhills but the bike has to slow until it catches my cadence speed with such a low gear. It’s spirit-crushing to be that close to the end and unable to make any decent speed. I crawl my way through the single track pulling over occasionally to let other riders make a clean pass. The minutes tick away past 10 hours… 11 hours and finally 12 hours. I cross the finish line at 12 hours and 31 minutes. Beer me.
  3. Gummee!

    Gummee! That's MR. Toothless

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    department of goods dot com = closeouts. Or you can keep checking gearscan.com for ALL the listings of the limited time sales. I just got a pair of Castelli bib knickers for over half off. :deal

    Keep an eye on the clymb too.

    HTH

    M
  4. Gummee!

    Gummee! That's MR. Toothless

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    I need a pair of these:
    [​IMG]
    Mo bettah than the SKS Race Blades I have now. Also need a pair of fenders big enough for cross tires. Yesterday's mud back re-re-confirmed what I already knew.

    I have a REALLY old version of the Crudcatcher. Old enough that all it fits are steel-tubed bikes! Still works acceptably IF you're riding a steel-tubed bike. :nod ...but the CF and AL bikes in the garage? Worthless.

    M
  5. fullmonte

    fullmonte Reformed Kneedragger

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    Wow Ridge, that is an amazing feat of endurance and tenacity.:eek1:deal You pressed on when most would have pussed out.:clap. The back yard now has a creek that does not normally exist there.
  6. Gummee!

    Gummee! That's MR. Toothless

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    Damn Ridge that last bit was heartbreaking!

    ...but at least you A. finished and B. finished under your own power.

    :thumb

    M
  7. Ridge

    Ridge Jitenshado

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    Thanks and I agree that, at that point, I was just happy to finish under my own power. I'd be remiss to say that I want retribution next year. Better preparation, better nutrition, stronger execution.

    Wilderness 101 in PA and Mohican 100 in OH are fast approaching and I need to decide if I'm attempting either... or both. :lobby
  8. Chisenhallw

    Chisenhallw Avowed Pussbag

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    I've narrowed it down to 'earth'. Or 'Baltimore'.
    <img src="http://ic.pics.livejournal.com/velikynovgorod/14092553/367312/367312_original.jpg">


    Well, bollocks. Still, I think awarding approximately 10,000 man-points are in order. Kudos, sir.
  9. fullmonte

    fullmonte Reformed Kneedragger

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    On a positive note, the weather can't possibly be worse than last weekend.:deal:D
  10. Gummee!

    Gummee! That's MR. Toothless

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    After Ridge's RR, mine is postively hum-drum. 2ish hours in the off-again on-again rain on dirt roads.

    I DID go the hardest the longest I've done since last cross season yesterday going up Busthead Rd. Legs were screaming at me. HR was within 4 beats of legs completely locking up. ...and I said 'shut up legs!' and kept going. My arms were so full of lactic acid that I couldn't grip my bars any more. Luckily, going uphill, you don't really need to.

    100m of flat(ish) and I was ready to go again. HR was back down out of the red zone, arms were working again, and with more air flow, my glasses sorta un-fogged.

    ...then there was a 3mi downhill... Its fun descending in the mud. Glasses get all covered in mud, water gets inside your lenses, and there's no traction. :eek1 Makes going round corners 'fun.'

    All-in-all, it was a fun albeit hard ride. ...in what's *supposed* to be an easy week! I missed a few days of riding last week due to the 4-day headache, so I figured one ride 'out of the ordinary' would be OK.

    M
  11. Tallbastid

    Tallbastid Let's get tropical

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    Damn Ridge, congratulations on finishing!
  12. Mr Head

    Mr Head PowerPoint ADV

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    Good stuff Ridge. :thumb

    Made my back hurt.:lol3
  13. Ridge

    Ridge Jitenshado

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    Thanks guys. I always recommend pushing ones limits... but this one might have been a bit too far even for me. :D
  14. Gummee!

    Gummee! That's MR. Toothless

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    humph. You ain't dead. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger. :nod

    M
  15. YakSpout

    YakSpout Obstacle Allusion

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    What they said. :thumb
  16. YakSpout

    YakSpout Obstacle Allusion

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    Nope, it was a reference to the topic rehash we keep running into. :D
  17. Ridge

    Ridge Jitenshado

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    True... and I just registered for the Pisgah 55.5 along with the Wilderness 101. I'm not an addict... I promise. :lol3
  18. Gummee!

    Gummee! That's MR. Toothless

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    I say again: humph

    So... what didya do for training to be on the bike for umpteen hours? :ear

    M
  19. Chisenhallw

    Chisenhallw Avowed Pussbag

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  20. Ridge

    Ridge Jitenshado

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    Honestly not much difference between preparation for my normal race season. I typically log about 160 miles per week throughout 5 days with two rest days as bookends. I include at least one set of AT intervals immediately after a rest day and I try to fit in a few sets of anaerobic jumps after the second rest day. I'll adjust the schedule depending on which races I'm doing on the weekends. If no races scheduled, then I add in long endurance miles on weekends.

    Nutrition and calorie intake are bigger factors IMHO. Finding that balance between what you can tolerate for 10+ hours with what your body responds well to is the most difficult piece of the puzzle. For me, it was honey stinger waffles, fig "Newman's", Honey Stinger chews and Tailwind nutrition in the camelbak. Figure that you can ingest and absorb approximately 1/3 of the calories you're burning and add or subtract as the day progresses. After my derailleur incident, I drastically cut back on calorie intake since I was relegated to spinning at a 6mph max speed. Had I been able to keep going as before, I would have had much less food left over at the end.