What I’ve been doing, in preparation for the biggest race of my life, is a lot of mother fucking riding. I had 4 weeks in a row of 200 miles or more on my bike, including thousands of feet of climbing. I put in 20 hours the week before last, when Gnome came to visit.
Now, it’s Taper Madness.
I got the job and am back to sucking corporate cock full time. I hate the job, booking corporate travel, but my expertise is in high demand right now. I hate the industry and the 5 day work week. The best part of the job is being able to commute on my bike. Commuting is fun as hell. It’s only 5 miles each way. It takes me about 18 minutes to get downtown, and 32 minutes to get home (big ass monster climb to my house). I have a bike rack, all to myself, that’s hidden back by the dumpster in the garage attached to the building. At night the garage is gated so I have no worries about anyone stealing it. My bosses are fully supportive of my commute and have no problems with me coming in all sweaty and changing in the bathroom. I work nights, so jeans and gymshoes are acceptable. Last week was a training week so it was a little uncomfortable changing into “business casual” type clothes after my ride.
I raced my Voodoo this weekend, also, in preparation for Mohican. My friend Jeni, who is also doing Mohican, talked me into going down to Kentucky for the General Butler MTB race. She said it would be good for me to race on terrain similar to what I will experience next week. I also wore the outfit I plan to race in, practiced my nutrition (oatmeal, LARA bars, coconut water, protein shakes, power gels, fruit, etc), and got used to my new Hydrapack.
If only I had known what I was getting myself into.
We reg’d in the expert cat – for the miles. The loop was 5 miles but trail conditions were SHIT after 6 inches of rain this week. The fast guys were finishing loops in 45 minutes. I knew I was fucked. The expert women were doing 3 loops and the expert men were doing 4.
We lined up to start, and that’s when Marty looked at my suspension and said “When is the last time you put air in your shock?” HUH? I have to put air in my shock? What the fuck does that mean? Holy shit! I had NO suspension. Butch, starting at a later time, hauled ass back to his car for a shock pump and hooked me up with 140 in the top and 130 in the bottom. WHEW. THANKS BUTCH!
And then we were off. The trail was awful. Rocks and slippery, scary roots, lots and lots of mud and all singletrack. Downhills, uphills, switchbacks, hike-a-bike type of terrain. Grassy parts with muddy water that made me slip and slide like crazy. Off camber, rocky terrain that I had to walk my bike and where I screamed FUCK THIS SHIT, as loud as I could, on my 2nd loop. Then more grassy, muddy, watery hills, and then finally I could hear the music in the parking lot and knew the end of the loop was close.
After 3 loops, I felt like I had just finished a 3 hour ‘cross race.
I got 3rd, and Jeni got 2nd.
My bike fit is perfect. The only thing I am changing for Mohican are the pedals. Candies just aren’t cutting it so I am going to use the eggbeaters Gnome brought me. Maybe they’ll bring me good luck.
After the race I talked to several people who have done Mohican and they suggested I downgrade my entry to the 100K. I am about 80% sure I will go ahead and switch to the 100K. This race was a lot like the Mohican trails will be, but 100 fucking miles? I really do not want to DNF. Or miss the cut offs. I know I have the heart and endurance to do a 100m MTB race but not on this type of terrain. It bums me the fuck out, because I really, really wanted to do the 100m.
What to do?? Go big and possibly DNF? Or go small, and pussy out?
After Mohican, I will be doing two nighttime criteriums, the Madiera Crit, and the Hyde Park Blast. I finally got my team jersey last week – THANKS RACHEL! I am pretty stoked to be the only person to sport a RideClean jersey here in Cincinnati. I love the DC logo and the HTFU on the collar.
I rode with the Slow and Steady ride last Thursday, probably for the last time, since my night hours will start up next week. This is the funnest ride ever. Kelon, who started this ride 3 years ago, is totally dedicated to getting people stoked about riding bikes. There are tall bikes, dirt bikes, BMX bikes, road bikes – fancy and old, fixed gear bikes, MTBs – if you come on this ride, you are going to have a smile on your face all night long. Yea, it may take us 2 hours to ride 10 miles, but who fucking cares. It’s a great time, and I am going to miss it. Last week we stopped on the Purple People Bridge for a picture. Isn’t the skyline gorgeous?
Gnome gave me a class on the Hipstamatic app and showed me how to take rad pictures. I’ll leave you with a picture of Dominic doing his thing.
P.S. Today was 90 days off the mezz. My lungs are in better shape than I ever could have imagined.by