Monday, November 26, 2012

Super Gravel Grinder Week

Lots of fun gravel rides.....and a lot of Black birds also....

This past weekend Tim Greene hosted the Black Sunday Gravel Grinder.  One of our most popular rides ever.  For the second week in a row we were greeted at the end of the ride by large amounts of Black birds.  Check out the recap here:

Wednesday is the Full Moon Monty gravel grinder on the Little Blue Trace Trail.  Always a fun ride made especially fun because it is at night.  That is right, charge those lights and come on out for a good time on the very beginner friendly LBTT.  

Complete info:

I heard there is gravel in those darn hills. Sunday the Midwest Gravel Grinder group will host the Pleasant Hill Thrill.  A new ride on a very fun course.  Maybe we will see some more Black birds.....

More info:

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Gone Soft

Honey, I think I have gone soft....

This past weekend I officially began my training for the 2013 season.  You say, "but Chris it is still November".  Yes, but planning for a successful season actually begins many months, if not years before.

First step was setting some goals.  More on those later.  Next was some fitness test to find out where I currently stand.  I decided to got ahead and race round #5 of Boss Cross.  Joe Fox got permission to use English Landing Park again after last years floods.  Back in 2001 I promoted the first race ever held there - CrossLogic Cyclocross Challenge. Here are some pics from those events.  I enjoy racing there and I routinely ride through the park during training rides so despite not being in "race shape" and unsure if my hip would be o.k. with the dismounts  I lined up with the Masters division.

After Saturday I found out I was not standing at all and nearly got ran over during the first lap.  I forgot how fast cross starts are.  I knew I had "gone soft" when the lactic acid started to creep in my muscles and I had no drive to push through the pain. 
I settled in my own pace and slowly dropped back toward the rear of the pack.  My teammate Dave Wathen kept his tired on the rim and kicked my arse in the process. 
I wish I could tell you I am o.k. with "going soft".  O.K. with dropping back in the group on gravel rides.  O.K. with my son out climbing me on every ride.  But I am not.  I am still coming to terms with this new soft me.

One thing I can tell you is I am o.k. with being injury free.  I can tell you it is really nice to wake up in the morning with no pain.  For the first time in many years I do not have any pain to speak of.  I worked my butt off to rehab my shoulder last year and my hip a few months ago.  If I do start developing any, I take care of it.  For example, my IT Band gets a little tight from time to time.  In the past I would just keep training and make everything worse.  Now I continually monitor my body (mind and sole also) and do what is right for me long term.

My main goal next year is to remain injury free and to train within reason to accomplish my goals. As I get ready for 2013 this new me might be a little hard to work with and still reach my goals.   Can I train enough and still be competitive and injury free?  Time will tell....  

Friday, November 9, 2012

Grinders begin with the Gobbler

Gravel Grinder season is upon us.   One of my favorite grinders from last year was the Gobbler Grinder.  This year we are moving it the weekend before Thanksgiving instead of after. 

I am really looking forward to this years season for three reasons.  First, my son Christopher is planning on riding a few with us so he can be in top shape for next years MTB season.  Second, Carolynn and I are going to break out the tandem and she is also going to join us.  Lastly, I am beginning a new chapter in my life and will be working with a few select athletes this year.  More to come on that soon.

As usual, complete details on gravel rides at