San Dimas Stage 2

Today we had a 42 mile road race. Short races are harder for me because they’re so fast. I spent all those years training to be a steady state cyclist and so many speed changes wears me out. I didn’t last too long. I knew there would be a shake up when we hit the main climb the first lap, unfortunately I was just shy of staying with the group. That first lap was so much faster than I was prepared for or capable of, but it was fun riding with 75 people, even though it was only for a short time.

I rode about 100 yards off the back for about a mile but couldn’t get any closer. Then the gap started to extend. We rolled down a hill and they were gone. I settled in with a group a few hundred yards back and rode with them rest of the way. It was actually good for me to ride with a smaller group, get in some practice.

It was hard but fun and I’m sure I’ll adapt a little and be better off for it.

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San Dimas Stage Race

Yesterday I drove east to San Dimas for the first of three days of bike races. Stage 1 was a 3.8 mile hill climb time trial. I warmed up on the kwaz trainer for almost an hour before my start. The kwaz trainer is really smooth, quiet and a pleasure to ride.

The course went up Glendora mtn road and had a bunch of switchbacks. I can’t remember how many I was concentrating on breathing. I’m sure at some point I’ll be able to focus on more than one thing at a time, maybe when I’m re-seasoned.

I tried as hard as I could and afterwards I couldn’t really think of anywhere I could have made up time. I was pleased with the effort.

I finished in 16:14, and the winner did 14:00. That’s quite a bit faster.

Interesting thing about this? He averaged 16 mph and I averaged 14 mph.

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Swimming Videos

Nancy (CVMM) and I just finished six “How To” videos for swim drill technique. Hope you find them as useful as I do.

Head Up Swimming

“Y” Kick

6 Kick Switch

Fist Drill

Catch Up Drill

Finger Tip Drill

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Talking to Valencia Triathlon Club

I was up in Valencia Tuesday night to talk to the Triathlon Club. It was started by a longtime friend and it was nice to get reacquainted. I spoke a little about how to get faster on the bike, touched on nutrition and the importance of balancing your body for two reasons, power and injury prevention. It was fun and the first time in almost 18 years I spoke to a triathlon club. Hopefully they enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed myself. Cheers Valencia Tri Club!

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Sunday Ride, March 6th

Another wonderful day for a ride. We started out at the Westlake Swim and Tennis Club again this week. It looks like it makes more sense to start there, saves a lot of time fiddling around through town and stop lights. With the weekend of racing in the Desert, the turn out was pretty small, Mike, Clinton, Carl, Mark and me. We rode along Agoura Rd. to Lost Hills and cut over to Las Virgenes, to Mulholland, up Rock Store, the upper triangle and back down Decker, and finished around the lake.

It’s nearing the end of my winter stay, so next week we’ll work on time trial efforts again. I think that went well last time we did it.

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Feb 20th – CVMM Sunday Ride

Today we worked on Time Trialing. We rode out to Cornell and went back and forth. Cornell is an undulating road about 2 miles long, goes from Kanan, about 400 yds south of HWY 101, to Mulholland by Malibu lake. We worked on our TT strengths, and did some high end efforts, 6 total. It’s a shame only 5 people showed up, because everyone can benefit from this type of workout.

It was the first time this year, for me anyway, to try this hard. What a shock. Six minutes of full speed ahead. Standing between intervals my legs were shaking. Maybe we’ll try it again in a couple of weeks.

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Feb 13th – CVMM Sunday Ride

Another just about perfect day for a ride. We started at the Westlake Swim & Tennis club again this week which cut about 30 minutes off the route we took. The route, pretty much the same one as the rain day, except the starting and finishing point, and the upper loop.

We all got times up Rock Store climb today – Dusty broke 16 minutes! We raced down Encinal in the upper loop and the bottom of Decker in Westlake, great fun. I love going fast downhill and then trying to hold the speed as long as possible. I’m slowly getting in good enough shape to play on these descents. It makes cycling so much fun. Dusty and Sasha rode away from me at the end of the flat section, with relative ease. My skinny little legs were stinging and I had trouble pushing on the pedals anymore  – love that feeling by the way.

Thanks for coming out and see you all next weekend!

Couple of videos – first one from Mulholland just west of Las Virgenes.

Second from the top of Mulholland towards the end of the upper loop.

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Saturday Feb 12th

Three of us rode out Angeles Forest HWY today – well basically out to the HWY. We only rode on it for 4 miles or so. Long day! Seven hours away from the house, and 6:40’ish in the saddle. I think roughly 110 miles. Beautiful day, and nothing I’d rather do then spend the day on my bike. OK, maybe 4 hours would have been nicer, but we will all reap the benefits from this day as we move forward into the season – or at least that’s the plan. Yes, there is/was a plan.

The wind was much more friendly than the last time we went out there. We were 30 minutes faster to Acton this time – and although we are in better shape now, it was still mostly the wind being far more kind to us.

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The English Beat!

A group of 6 us went to see The English Beat Tonight! They were playing at the Canyon Club in Agoura Hill. It was great.

The crowd was pretty funny. All the same people who would have been there 25-30 years ago, only 45-50 now instead of 20. Yes, I’m one of those people!

Before heading over to the club to watch and listen, we met at the counter for burgers and talked Mike into getting the 1 pounder! Yes, one pound of meat in a bun – the bun looked like a pill box it was so small in comparison. The burger was sticking out at least an inch all the way around the bun! And he finished it! But anyone who knows Mike knew he would.

It was great to see Jenny, Navid, Jill and Mike after so long. Hope to see them all again soon. The Kwaz was also with us, but he likes to be stealth, so I always have this internal debate whether I should mention him or not. Oh well, hope you don’t mind El Kwazito, and I’m glad you came.

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Feb 6th – CVMM Sunday Ride

It was a small group today, only 5 and we started out from Westlake Swim & Tennis Club instead of the usual fancy CLU pool, but the weather was far more cooperative. It was a nice change from the last couple of weeks of crazy wind and 100% humidity.

We rode through Hidden Valley, out Petrero, along Los Posas, Down PCH, Up Encinal and down Decker back to the Swim and Tennis Club.

I like Encinal for both descending and climbing. It’s got a nice steady grade and you can get into a rhythm going up, and because none of the turns are sharp, on the way down you can work the whole way. Pedaling downhill with descent wattage, maintaining a steady effort is challenging. One of the things that I can only do when I’m in shape. Add a couple of people to make a pace-line and it’s really fun. There is nothing like going fast to put a smile on your face.

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