Saturday, June 28, 2008

Good Saturday

The whole family slept in this morning, until 8:40 am!!! That was cool. We got up, had some delicious homemade biscuits with bacon, and Starbucks coffee. Then we headed to a secret spot to pick some fresh raspberries. We got enough for breakfast and left some for other folks and animals. It was getting hot already, but we headed to Bent Creek for 7 miles of mtn biking. Jubal is loving the trail-a-bike. He wants to go on the trails!! We hit deerfield, Boyd Branch and Wolf Branch today. We finished up by stopping by the Trek bicycle demo at Trail's End. It was fitting since we all ride Trek's.

Now we are hanging out at the house, getting ready to visit some friends who enticed us to there house with "big juicy hamburgers"!!!!

Have a great day.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Oh Man!!!!

Fresh wild raspberries on top of homemade granola, topped with local honey for breakfast. The ride to work was not fast but I felt like I was just floating along. Good start to a Friday.

Here is what I need to figure out. When the nausea hits me at races, why does it start after I stop riding and I sit down for a few minutes? My legs feel good, I can still power up climbs, no cramping in my body. I feel fatigued, then stop sit down, 2 minutes later, it rushes over me and sends me to the ground. Not painful, just very uncomfortable. I gotta get it figured out.

Have a great day,

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


The digging has started. There is a huge 10 foot deep 20x20 ft hole in our neighbors yard, I guess next they will start digging a ditch through our yard. We might end up with some fresh gravel for our driveway though.

I rode my bike to work today. Just a steady spin, not pushing hard at all. I keep thinking about the Cowbell Challenge. I think I still need to drink more water, period. I think sometimes I just get tired of drinking and put it off. I need to find some way to stay interested, and look forward to that next swallow.

Have a great day.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

There is a Monster in my yard.

It looks like something might actually happen. After waiting around for three hours yesterday morning, the city rep, the surveyor and the construction company had a 10 minute meeting. They agreed that the plans had been drawn up 4 yrs ago, but that nothing had changed. It took 7 guys to agree on this. Then the city guy left, the surveyor left, I told the construction guy that I would like to help move the wood pile but I have to go to work. He said that was no problem and they would take care of it. I went inside to get ready for work, and the construction crew packed up and left. Wow, that was a hard day's work. Later in the day some culverts and a giant monster were delivered.

In racing news:
I placed 12th out of 13 at the Cowbell Challenge. So I did reach one of my goals. I did not place last!! Very cool. After reviewing all of the results, I am pleased with how I did. All of my lap times were consistent. I was able to hold a steady pace. The thing that baffles me is that I didn't really feel all that bad until I stopped and sat down. Thinking back I can remember small warning signs that I ignored, simply because I didn't know any better. I'll remember those next time. It didn't help that I actually enjoyed the course, even after 9 laps.

I have the Hot Doggett 100 in 3 weeks. I went to the web-site yesterday and noticed that they had posted results. Pretty cool since it is not a race. Last year I did the metric century. I felt really good, at the start. We rolled out, I stood up to pass some people, and my crank rotated. What? I limped back to neutral support, got it fixed and started again, alone, about 20 minutes behind. I cranked and cranked, and pushed, and spun my way through the course. Stopping to get water or to greet Rhonda and Jubal, but kept a steady pace. Once on a long flat, I drafted behind some folks, but once the course went up, I dropped them. I finished right at 4 hours, still alone, and felt good about my time.
After looking at the results from almost 1 yr ago, I felt even better. I placed 28th out of 136 riders, and came in only 30 minutes behind 1st!!!!

Have a great day.
Posted by Picasa

Monday, June 23, 2008


Sometime during or shortly after we signed the papers on our house, we were told that a developer had bought an easement across the corner of our property. The developer owns a lot across the street where he plans to build some houses. That was four years ago. We waited for a year and nothing happened. Then we called the guy and found out that he has been sued for some reason. We eventually forgot about it and started to do some landscaping. We planted perennials and in the inside corner of the fence is a small wood shed full of wood. We also have a couple of trees growing.

So now, 4 years later, the surveyors have come, marked the area and are supposed to get here as I write this, to dig a 20 foot wide ditch through our yard.
Several good things will hopefully come out of this. I hope that he does a terrible job fixing the road in front of our house, because this will work as a traffic slowdown/ deterrent.

Another thing is that our neighbor's gravel driveway is higher than our yard and when it used to rain ( and hopefully it will again), our yard would turn into a lake. I will be asking the contractor to adjust this when they put the driveway back in.
Enjoy the before pictures, I'll post more as they progress.

Have a great day.
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, June 22, 2008

I am not a freak

I firmly believe that in order to ride a single speed long distance and succeed, one has to be some kind of freak. I am not that freak and I proved it once again.

The 7 mile loop that had been designed for the Cowbell Challenge, was a sweet combination of tech sections, windy, rooty single track, and single track skirting along fields. It was not overly strenuous, but continuous with no real sections to rest.

The day started out well, with a call-up to the front. Thanks to the announcer, I would be able to start two rows back instead of way in the back. I knew it was going to be a long hard day though, and I did not hammer from the start. I let a lot of people go by and I found my own rhythm. I rode for 6 hours without really taking a break. I only stopped each lap to lube, get fresh water bottles and some food. At the end of lap 6 I took a break. It was starting to get hot out, and I knew I had to be careful. I ate and sipped on water and sports drinks for the next hour or so. Around 5:30pm I went back out. I felt good. In fact, I felt pretty good the whole time I was out there. I managed to ride 3 more laps without stopping very long. That was when I decided that I should go ahead and finish.

The finish to this race is weird because you cannot cross the finish line with your last lap until 9:01 pm. That meant that it was now 7:30 pm and I would have to way to cross the finish line. That's cool, I could get cleaned up and packed up and be ready to go. I went back to the tent. Sat down with some water, and then it hit. That wave of nauseousness. The lady in the tent next door asked if we were going back to Ashville. I looked at her and said" I'm sorry, I can't talk right now", and for the next hour and a half I laid on the ground first hot, then cold, trying to sip on some electrolyte drink. Little Jubal was concerned and kept asking questions about what was going on. Rhonda was scurrying around getting things packed up. A thunderstorm was rolling in and race director called the race at 8:30pm. I guess I get one more DNF ( did not finish), as I was not able to walk the 50 yards to cross the finish line. ( so much for goal number one: finish feeling well).

The EMT's came over and looked at me, took my blood pressure, and said that I looked a whole lot better than I did last year. They said I would recover on my own if I could keep drinking. They said I probably did not feel so good, but I would recover.

Rhonda got everything loaded, and I stumbled into the front seat where I tried to get comfortable for the hour ride to my parent's house in Charlotte. We got a little lost but finally found the way.

I stumbled to the room and lay down. After about thirty minutes of laying motionless, I started feeling better. After an hour I was able to get up and take a shower.

I ended up with 62 miles.

Lesson learned: I cannot ride a single speed long distance and expect to feel good. Those who are capable of doing so, may not be freaks, but there is something special about them. My hat off to those!!!

Next up: Hot Doggett 100.

Have a great day.
Posted by Picasa

Friday, June 20, 2008

One More Day

I'm not going to get myself worked up about this one. After the Burn 24 this year, I realised that bike racing can be fun. I just have to race within my limits. I cannot race faster than I have trained. I prioritize my family ( and work ) over training and therefore I am only going to go so fast for so long. But that's cool. I would not trade on minute that I have spent with Rhonda and Jubal for an additional 30 seconds of training, much less trade hours.

So, I'm going to go out there and push myself, and stop to hug Jubal, ( Rhonda won't hug me when I am sweaty and nasty ), and head out for another lap.

The temps are not even supposed to get above 90. That is great!!!!

Have a great day.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Really Bothersome

It really bothers me when I could have done something for someone and I don't. Several weeks ago at a race, a fellow racer told me that his wallet had been stolen along with his credit card and cash. This guy had taken a bus from Colorado to NC. Then he got on his bike and rode the remaining 70 miles to the race venue. His plan was to ride back to the bus station and ride the bus back to CO. If I remember correctly , his return ticket had been stolen as well.

The guy obviously needed money. What did I do? I said something to the effect of " Bummer". (I have since apologized to him for not giving him some cash).

What is there today that you could do for your neighbor?

Have a great day.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Single Speed

With the Cowbell Challenge getting closer I decided to dust off the WUSS. The only thing I have done to it since the Cohutta 100 is change the gearing. I put an easier gear on it and will leave it that way. I might even try to get down there early on Friday to pre-ride the course. Then I might change to an even easier gear. Remember, my two main goals are to finish feeling good, and not place last.

So I pulled the bike out, adjusted the brakes, rode it around the yard. And put it back in the shed, ready to race. Lookout!!!

Have a great day.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Motor Pacing

There is nothing like it, 30mph behind the dude on the motor scooter!!!! It's gotta be a good day if it starts like that!!

Have a great day,

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Father's Day Weekend

It has been a great weekend so far. Actually my weekend is kind of over since I have to work on Sunday. It is an opening day for camp, so I get to hand out name tags and greet kids as they arrive.

Friday night I got home to a very excited family. I barely got in the door when Jubal started yelling about me having a present. I tried to calm him down, to no avail, since I was dripping in sweat and needed to change out of my cycling clothes. He would not wait. He grabbed one of those gift bags that one uses so no wrapping is needed, and proceeded to open it and tell me to guess what it was. I could not guess. He finally pulled it out. It was my very own remote controlled motorcycle. Sweet!!

Guess who plays with it more than I do?? Not Rhonda....

Saturday we got up and for some reason I looked under the house to check on the hot water heater. Unfortunately it had degraded to the point that I could see a stream of water running down the side. I guess I know what I'll be doing later today I thought. But first, I had promised Jubal and Rhonda a hike, and one that might include a swimming hole.
So off we went, to get breakfast at West End Bakery, then to Big Creek. Destination: Midnight Hole. I have heard about this place quite a bit but never made the trek over there. It is about 45 minutes west of Asheville near the Pigeon River. After parking the trail led us up a gentle slope for 1.5 miles. Once arriving at the destination, we find a groups of people jumping off of the 15 ft high rock into an aqua pool. The water is deep and clear, deep enough that one cannot see the bottom. Not able to resist the draw of jumping off of something into the water, I make my way out to swim to the jumping rock. The water is cold enough to chill me to the bone. By the time I swim out, jump off and swim back to Jubal and Rhonda, I am sure that I might go hypothermic.

The hike back was fairly uneventful except for the spectacular crash that Jubal made, resulting in some loud crying and some bad scrapes:

After getting back home, I set to work. 4 hours later, we have a new hot water heater and pipes that are not leaking. One more project done!!!

Have a great day.

Posted by Picasa

Friday, June 13, 2008

Mini Epic

Kitsuma 2 times. 2.5 hours of hard riding. Figuring out the lines on steep sections, meaning I can shave time not walking. 71 degrees in the hollers, feels like air conditioning blowing through my body. Good stuff.

Have a great day.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Hit or Miss

That's what my posts are gonna be for a while. This is the crazy busy time at camp and home as well. With the warm weather and more daylight, we do more stuff together as a family. It's fun, you should turn off the computer and go play with your kids.

Riding Kitsuma today, I hope I see a bear or something cool.

Have a great day,

Tuesday, June 10, 2008


Today, I will have ridden my bike 8 days in a row. Hopefully it will help me be ready for the Cowbell in 2 weeks. Fun times. I've been practicing riding/nutrition in the heat. I have been forcing myself to drink two water bottles of liquid each way on my work rides. I have also slowed down a little bit and tried to ride at an easier pace in an effort to keep myself from overheating. It seems to be working and the true test will come at the Cowbell.
I found out that some technical obstacles have been added to the course, and so my goals have changed. One new goal will be to consistently ride the techy stuff. I'm going to wait until I see the course to set a mileage goal, but, I would still like to see 75. I will be satisfied with 50 though.

Since my body handles the heat so well ( or not ), today I am signing up for the Hot Doggett 100. This is a local 100 mile ride through the mountains with only 9600 feet of climbing. Should be fun. I did the metric century (60 miles) last year. At the start, my crank fell off. I had to go back to neutral support, wait 15 minutes for them to fix it, then ride on my own for 60 miles. I still managed to have fun!!
Have a great day.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Got Hot?

I do, so much that I'll be glad to share. No, really, please take some, as much as you want!!!

There is nothing like the feeling of 95 degrees, white hot sunshine and a high heart rate. The world around take on a funny faded hue.

I'm still riding my bike to work. I'd rather sweat in on my bike than sweat in my truck anyway!! I'm also hoping to acclimatize before the Cowbell Challenge in two weeks. 12 hrs of racing under the hot NC Piedmont sun!! Last year, I had thoughts in my head that I was some sort of great mtn bike racer. Cool, but I wound up in the hospital after pushing too hard. This year, I am smarter and know when to stop. I got 40 miles before the mishap last year, and somewhere around 75 the year before. Somehow I have placed dead last each year.
This year's goals are many: Finish still able to walk and eat on my own, get 75 miles, not finish last. Pretty simple, we'll see what happens. I'm also going to pull out the single speed!!!!
Have a great day.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Rhodo Tunnels of Love

Kitsuma is such an intimidating trail. Especially in 90 degree heat. My plan is to ride out there to improve my skills. It would be great if I could ride the entire loop twice, in preparation for the Off Road Assault on Mt Mitchell. But yesterday, at 7pm, it was so hot and my head was pounding the way it pounds before my body fails me, that I decided not to do two loops. I did one Kitsuma to Mill Creek rd loop then went up the Kitsuma switchbacks again, turned around and rode back down.

I am pretty excited that I was able to ride all but two of the switchbacks going up. One of them I stopped and tried again and made it. The bugger though, is a left hand turn, you first have to get over a rock water bar, make the left, up-slope turn, navigate a diagonal root, then pop up 10 inches over another root. I'll have to work on that one.

After getting back to the parking lot at the end of the first loop, there were some good old fashioned red-necks in the parking lot drinking beer and doing who knows what. Sketchy place, that parking lot.

Have a great day.

Thursday, June 05, 2008


You know what that means. Mtn bike ride for me. I'll be heading to my new secret training grounds after work for a couple of laps.

Don't forget:

Have a great day.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

To Race or Not To Race...?

I'm considering giving up the track racing. 3 people broke their collar bones in the past 2 weeks, and several others are all scraped up. I can't afford the $2500 deductible if I break something, and I will save about $15 per week, by riding my bike to work instead of driving to work, to the track and then paying the entry fee. Hmmm. I'll get more time with my family too.

We'll see what happens.

Have a great day.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Mtn Sports Fest..

This weekend was the Mtn Sports Festival. It was a realizing fun time with the family. Saturday we went to all of the company displays and registered to win free stuff. Sunday was the Diamond Brand Family Kayak race. We paid the $5 registration fee, picked out a boat and went paddling. In the first leg, the course took us upstream, slaloming ( is that a word?) through some buoys. On the other side of the river, we picked up a potato. Then we turn downstream, pass our paddles through a hula hoop that was hanging from a tree. After that we make a bee line down stream, around another buoy, through the spraying water, back to the start/finish, drop the potato in the bucket.

Before the race, we were out "practicing". James the race director gave Jubal a paddle too. While he had some really good paddling coordination, we were a little too close, and Rhonda got the paddle to the head several times!! So, for the race, we asked him to be the navigator. He loved that job and we did not hit any icebergs!!!

Photos courtesy of Asheville Citizen Times

I tried to ride my bike on Saturday and my poor legs not having fully recovered from the Burn 24, combined with the heat ( it was 80 degrees!!), made for a shortened route!! I did get 30 miles in however.

Have a great day.