Monday, December 09, 2013


Yesterday's (Sunday 12/8) Capital City CX Race at Lake Fairfax was a blast and had some great weather for watching CX and it was very traditional with Snow and sometimes sleet coming down. 

I left my house around 10AM and  started up the road towards Vienna.  And right away I knew I SHOULD go back and get glasses and a buff/facemask/something but I really didn't want to even though it was REALLY blowing snow and usually sleet into my face pretty hard.  I spent a lot of time with my head down looking at my front wheel and peeking up every 15 seconds to check that the road was clear most of the way to Vienna and out the W&OD to Reston.  Opted to take the back entrance via Michael Faraday into Lake Fairfax and rode some of the trails.  It was a scary blast.  A few bad mud holes.  Made it out to the Front side of the park with no major issues and rode thru parts of the  course.  :P     Hands were pretty cold but I was warm thanks to a travel mug of cocoa. 

Hit the MORE/Scudfry operation up and warm fries rocked!  Hung out.  Got someone to take a picture of my frozen beard.  Watched some racing.  Chris Scott destroying fools!  Helicopter parents are apparently a sucky part of cycling now also.  Almost wanted to punch them and their idiotic strategy yelling crap.  Drank some PLB's.  Watched some more racing. Saw a bunch of friends.  Talked club stuff a bit.  Watched more racing, the ladies were pushing HARD!  A hotdog later and I was on my way back to Vienna.  Rode back out the south, though not before a wrong way on the actual course.  :P 

The Slog out was slow but not bad.  Then I rode the W&OD back and then did some of it on the horse trail for some "REAL" CX.  And at right before hunters mill I flatted.  Yep.  Changed under the sign at Hunters Mill, wasn't bad.  Hardest thing was getting the ice off the valve stem to unscrew it.    20 minutes later back on the trail.  Snow and Sleet blowing again after just snow.  Rolled into Vienna and hit Spokes for 3 spare tube.  Almost went to Whole Foods for a beer but it was pretty full.

Went home to watch the Looser-skins loosing in epic fashion.  Warm shower never felt so good!  Gassed up the car ran some errands. 

Gotta do the breaks on the bike before I ride again, the ice destroyed the breaks.  Now I remember why disc brakes are awesome.

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

When is Nap Time?

Sometimes you just want to take a Nap.

Thats today's motto and yesterday's also I think.  Part of it is the push to get back into cycling habit from my slacking off in November.  I'm at 56 miles in the last 2 days.  Today I shall run I self declare.

Crap the weather Wed and Thurs is looking Shittier.  I may still ride in tomorrow,  but Thursday is now looking like a possible Plan B ride.

Cooked up a new batch of Skratch, this time finally doing the eggy things.  Turned out awesome and super easy due to greasing the muffin tin with my super secret ingredient.

Bacon Grease.

Next time I want to integrate the bacon and cheese more so I will actually add it at the mid-way point versus after like the book says.   Also adding a "crust" of rice or bread might help also.  Or I will use Extra Large Eggs.

Taking a down day on Wednesday.  My body needs a recharge after 3 days of pretty hard work following 2 weeks of low activity.   May roll into DC to see a friends band play The Brixton Tonight.

Rain Rain and Snow on Sunday!  Looking like Cap Cross CX at Lk Ffx may be a real interesting event.  I may ride out to watch the mayhem/insanity on Sunday. 

Thursday, November 28, 2013

It's important to remember what we have from time to time.

This has been a VERY rough year for a lot of friends for a gamut of reasons.  And today of all days makes me thankfull for a laundry list of items but not just limited to whats below:

The men and women in our services.  Doing there best to represent us and protect us. Especially those on deployment who can't be with their family's this holiday season. 

The men and women who server in our protective services, aka police, fire, rescue, etc.  These people are out doing incredibly hard jobs to keep us safe.  Remember that next time you get pulled over for breaking the law, even though you were only going 10 mph over!  :) 

For my health and most of my friends continued good health.  If nothing else it reminds me to make smart decisions about what I am comfortable with and where I move into risk exceeding the reward.  I want to live to bike/run/eat/drink tomorrow.  Is going that extra bit faster worth it?  Do you know who besides yourself your risks can impact?

For my continued employment, a lot of friends have lost jobs recently or left bad ones.  My job isn't awesome in someways but it continues to be stable and offer opportunity to make $$ if you are willing to work.

My friends.  What can I say, be they roommates, people I ride with regularly, people I ride with occasionally or new people I've gotten to meet thru out the year.  Watching a movie last night I was reminded of how important friendships are to keeping people on an even keel during the hard times. 

My family.  Family drives you nuts, but they are your roots always something I feel I can look back on and see the support they have provided over my life.  Sure there are twists and turns and they aren't always pretty. 

Good Beer.  'Nuff Said.

Shelter, Food, Clothing, Friends, Health and Stuff.  

Monday, November 25, 2013

Being locked out is no fun

Saturday was a planned off day as I had some delusions about going on Pete's ride Sunday.  Well by the time to roll came around on Sunday I was not going anywhere except by foot for a bit. 

Saturday I took care of some business and helped a friend with a project.  It was good to get it off the list, and we actually got it done quick.  Then trolled the otherside of Vienna, who knew their were some snooty snobby @#$#@ just off Maple/123.

Sunday started off bad and went to stupid/worse quickly.

Woke up to the house at a lovely 53 degrees F.  COLD!  Went down and turned heat off for 2 minutes then tried to engage emergency heat - no real difference in air coming from vent.  The EM heat is out I suspect.  I think it had tried using it over night and failed.  So I messed around and changed some stuff and got the heatpump/aux going.  I went out back in fleece/hat/gloves/jeans (No jacket) to check heatpump and after inspection went back up to go in.  Uh Oh.  Oh Shit.   Front door shut behind me.  And knob based lock was engaged.  Tried to pop/force as it was loosely shut - no luck it closed solid on 3rd try!  No roommates 1 was at work, 1 was not due back till afternoon from out of town.  No phone.  No keys.  No Cash.  Tried my car in-case i left it unlocked as that would give me access to secret cash stash - No luck. 

Back down to basement.  Tried to pop sliding glass door - No luck, very well secured.  Nice job me.  Basement window - Locked.  Deck climb???  Last resort.  Try front windows.  2 sets appear to be in open position.  No luck.  Back to examine deck climb.  Not going to be easy/safe or fun.  Re-examine basement window then main windows.  Try a bit harder - BINGO! Back in I go.  Now about 9 am and I'd been out for 30-40 mins.  Almost had given up to go bum around downtown vienna and bounce from shopping ctr to shopping ctr to stay warm till roommate returned. 

Once I was warmer I was off to Starblechs for Cocoa and breakfast.  Then home depot for a new key lockbox outside.  No more lockouts!   The rest of the morning was spent straightening up the house, taking care of errands, and general crap.  House got warm again around mid-afternoon.  Still is okay now.  Sigh. 

Busy week.  Tonight I gotta run.  Tuesday uh avoid winter storm.  Wednesday prep for Turkey Lurkey Day Adventures, Turkey Day Armageddon. Friday - Going out, Saturday - who knows.  Sunday I shall Take 0ver the World!

Friday, November 22, 2013

I'll take that for a dollar!

It was a warm one out last night for sure.  It was warmer than I was prepared for.  The winter boots were overkill, except when going thru the very damp creek.  Oh well. 

Ton of riders out, some new folks, some old returnee's.  It was a good ride, big thanks to Russ A for leading a supersized Cas+ ride.

Way too much b33r last night.  But good times were had and good talk was exchanged by the DDRC.  But getting home at 11:20 was a bit harsh and by the time I was in bed I think it was 12:15.  Another semi-restless night of sleep and my neck is still  a bit tender. Now my stupid left hand is sore either from riding or punch myself stupid in my sleep. 

Busy weekend on deck maybe.  Depends on some flakey folks and how @##@$$# the weather is on Sunday and how stir crazy I am.  Hoping to make some positive plans.  

Also need to bottle some beer and get ready for brewing a new batch for Thanksgiving week.  I think it's a Black Rye IPA on deck!  Hell yah! 

Poured out the last of the failed Peanut Butter Chocolate Stout yesterday.  It's a sad thing to pour out 2 cases of BAD beer.  Even when it tastes like crap.  I learned 2 things.  Don't mess around with timing on homebrew and avoid @#$@# extracts/etc in full batches.  If using something funky limit to half batch at maximum.  

It's almost time to escape work, I can NOT fricking wait.  Ants in my pants  or something.  Actually excited to get out and run!  Someone stop me! 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Get out there young man!

Busy week of riding and doing stuff.

Saturday I snuck in a great ride with Maureen at WF post work.  It was a tad damp and the bike showed it afterwards requiring  me to re-hook up the hose to get it somewhere approximating clean.   Got a ton of other crap also done this day. 

Sunday I cooked epic pancake and snausage breakfast before heading out on a 40 mile re-introduction to roadie-hood.  It was a nice way to spend a few hours except I forgot water and snacks and by halfway back I was bonked.  Quick stop at TBL Reston for water, fuel, and rinsing out the sweaty headband and I powered home feeling better.  Got the car washed and oil changed and a few other  things.

Friday I also hit costco and WF post  picking up my roomie.  It was a busy but uber productive weekend.  Good times.

Monday rolled up on me with a vengeance.  Like a Spirit of Vengeance like Nic Cage.

It's Monday B@#$@es!!!!

So I rode into work on Monday and that wasn't bad i was honestly too warm in my woolie.  Work sucked but I got out mostly ontime and road home in my T-shirt.  Gotta leave a spare jersey at work for those unplanned super warm days.  My left shoulder was a tad sore so I decided to go for a quick run.  As I was running I decided I would do some urban crossfit and hit the park gym of pull up bars and other stuff.  Bad mistake.  Shoulder went from ouch to @#$@## THAT F@#KING HURTS!

Spent the night and next day abusing the heating pad and advil but by 4pm the shoulder was mostly okay.  So off I schlepped to Schaeffer Farm.  Damn it felt cold in the lot and my fingers froze right away for some reason!  Trails have REALLY eroded in a few spots.  But it was good except where I made a few bad line choices and had to stop.  d'oh. 

Post ride it was off to DFH GTown for beer and chow.  Good beer and good friends. 

WACK dreams and I don't know whether to blame beer or food or what but I must have had my most active night of dreaming in years.  Slept thru my alarm till 8PM.

Friday, November 15, 2013

It's a hard knock life on MTB

A better night at WF last night except for 1 bit. 

I broke another saddle.  Thats saddle #2 to give up the ghost at WF.  And the 3rd saddle thats failed on me.  1st was my original WTB back on the Giant Rainer that eventually the rails simply flattened/crushed on.  2nd was my Terry Fly Ti.  Rail snapped while riding towards Salemander at WF on the rocks.  This one failed somewhere early I think in phase 1 headed towards the creek trail section 3.  It survived the next 8 mile pretty well.  A Selle Italia that had been on there for at least 2 years.  I think it's a good reflection that I am a better rider but I still do sit too much.  I'm sure the PA Adventure also contributed to it's recent failure.  That was a LOT of rocks.

New tubeless tire up front gets a mixed rating, but I expect that to improve.  I had WAY too  much air at around 34/35psi in it last night and expect it to get less-funky/loose when I drop it to 30'ish.

Boy was that tire a B@#!! to get mounted.  Super tight bead.  I also had to go back nearly flatten it 2 times then use stans on a rag to get 2 spots to seat properly/slip the bead in to seat.  Those pops always are good for a scare.  :) 

Tuesday I went down to WF post work for a pre-ride beer and ended up with a 11oz BCS from Goose Island from 2012.  Hell yah!  15%+ ABV.  It's a monster and it's smoother than at release for sure with a year aging.  Went down super nice.   And I weaved my way towards Barlington the first 2 miles of the WOD I rode.  No food plus 15% = Ass kicking booze hit.  Even in 11 OZ.

Went down to Mad Rose with a few navigation mis-cues but got there eventually.  In time to score a free beer to start with, a Lagunitas IPA.  Damn good.  Saw a few known faces, talked with Mike E for a bit.  Got some food order and checked out the Race Dots.  Excellent idea.  Mini Magnets setup for holding on race #'s for bike and running races.  No safety pins.  Really strong magnets.  Lets you slide them and the plate around your shirt. 

Busy weekend on deck again.  Plans tonight, work sat, ride Saturday afternoon, party Sat, Sun big ride on road, and other crap.

I'll be so glad when I have 2 official days off again.  Off for more free taco's at work now.  Viva la Bell!

Friday, November 08, 2013

Once, Twice, Three times...

Oy the MTB gods sent me a message loud and clear last night to drag my sorry ass of the trails early.  I was done and at my car by 7:45 or so with a flat and realized I had hit my 3 strikes rule and it was time to be done.  In actually that was the 4th strike, not the third.

1st Bungle.  Riding section 3 of the creek trail aka the race course section below phase 1 and phase 4 I hit a sandtrap I didn't see and nearly ditched my bike and myself recovery at the last second somehow to get a foot down and an arm around a tree. 

2nd Bungle - Phase 4 lower/western entrance we had gotten thru 3 of the 4 rock gardens and I ran out of steam and ended up stalled.  I got stopped safely and scooted out of the way to the left as far as possible.  Unfortunately the following rider was too close, didn't/couldn't get around me and stalled and fell over onto me knocking me half over and my bike fully. 2#$#@!!!  Thank rich!  Too bad Neil didn't have his camera ready for that one.

3rd Bungle - Coming out of phase 4 and after crossing the logs into upper phase 1 I hit a hidden stick and fully dump my bike and myself.  My first real fall in a while.  I landed well it was just done/over quick. 

4th Insult - Flat tire on access trail along creek to phase 1/salemander/powerlines/berms.  I must have hit the lone thorn of doom or something but after messing about with ramping a log more safely I noticed my front was squirely and going flat.  I had neil take over leadership with the group headed towards the bowl.  By the time I hit the tennis courts the front was flat.  Or at least mostly flat.  And no pump in the car.  Oh well.  I changed and relaxed.

Kilroy's was nuts as the Skins game was on and they were still winning.  We ended up in the dining room.  Good group and was pretty damn funny.

Rode in this morning, wasn't THAT cold though the tips of my fingers were a bit frozen by the end.   Ride home should be nicer.  Gotta figure the layers out.

Run tonight and hopefully sneak in a ride on Sunday before some lawn work with J.   

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Blow up the outside

What a week it's been.  Crazy shit at work.  Crazy shit on the bike.  Crazy cold with no heat at home still.

Should be getting the replacement thermo today.  I'll re-check the wiring that is there currently against what I originally had hopefully.  It was a TAD chilly this AM when I got up at 4 and 6 to do some remote testing.

HOPEFULLY will be biking in tomorrow for the 1st time in WAY too long. 

Rode big up in PA with some friends this weekend.  RB Winter Park has some awesome riding.  Pick up the Lizard Map for the Bald Eagle area and some others.

I realized I was at 54 miles of MTB between Thursday and Sunday.  Damn.  Second best week since Spring Man Camp.  Gotta ride the mtb WAY more this next year. 

Still easily on track to double my mileage on bikes of last year but my MTB will have dropped probably 200+ miles this year.  Thats kinda sad honestly. 

However things are SLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOWLY changing at work.  Had an informal sitdown interviewation.  The wagon wheels are turning.  Will the day come before Year 9 starts that I get my Saturday's back.  More than likely I suspect it will actually be the spring. 

Monday, October 28, 2013

Mookie Blaylock rocked it:

Saw MB last night at 1st Mariner in Baltimore last night.  Awesome show.  No opener.  Started at 8:20 and ended at 11:10.

Set List
Hard to Imagine
Elderly Woman Behind the Counter in a Small Town
Lightning Bolt
Mind Your Manners
Given to Fly
Daughter -(Walk on the Wild Side tag)
Present Tense
Spin the Black Circle
Let the Records Play
Setting Forth -(Eddie Vedder song)
Unthought Known

Encore 1:
Yellow Moon
Man of the Hour
I'm Waiting for the Man -(The Velvet Underground cover)
Better Man -(Save it for Later tag)
Do the Evolution

Encore 2:
Love, Reign O'er Me -(The Who cover)
Rockin' in the Free World

Lots of old, some of the new.  Damn solid.

Friday, October 25, 2013

The Big 180 is done.

I've officially logged 180 activities in Garmin or in  2 or 3 cases out this year so far.  Well garmin has 177 but will have 179 after I upload so I only missed garmin recording 1 event.  Pretty geeky.  Just shy of 2500 miles.

Cycling is will hit 2300 miles in 133 activities, that leaves almost 200 miles of running. 

My end goal this year? 220 Events 3K miles.  To hit that mark I've gotta get back into regularly bike commuting with a few rides post work I think.  I REALLY need to pull out the Winter gear.  Next week warms up a bit but then after that we are solidly in the 50-30 daily range.  Ugh.

Last nights WF TNR was a damn good ride for a group of around 12 people.  We kept rolling well and only stopped to regroup a few times.  We did shrink the pack on lap 2 with a few people bailing to change at the parking lot before I re-hit the bowl.

Trails are a mess with stream work and getting around WF over the next few weeks is going to get REALLY shitty with bridge's being removed on CCT sections, etc. 

Rumor has it we may be doing something uh...interesting for the halloween ride.

If it doesn't uh...nevermind.  Positive weather re-enforcement in place now. 

And strangely enough I plan to keep running.  In fact I actually want to try running a bit more and shoot for a possible half marathon of stupid.  Who knows?

Pearl Jam Sunday.  FCK yah!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Ouchie. Ouchie. Ouchie.

Getting out of bed was never so trying as this morning since maybe my last bad crash or maybe the day I hauled 100 tons of lumber into Fountainhead by hand.  I did take some advil yesterday but am avoiding it today in an attempt to expedite muscle recovery/repair. 

It's also joint and other soreness, not just muscles.  Some new bruises visible. 

But still I'm thinking Spartan Race next year. 

Update - Whoops never posted this yesterday.  Muscles feel better today by a good  bit but my left knee was a @#$@! last night and I slept like crap due to lack of advil taking/supply!  Stooopid.

Special News Bulletin 1 - Sucky pre-winter weather has arrived with high temps in the 50's and low's in the 30's.  @#!!

Special Special News Bulletin 2 - I like running.  There.  I said it.  FML.  Especially trail running.

I need a drink.

Photo's of me are up from Tough Mudder on MarathonFoto site.  I'm gonna chump out and buy a bunch once I've found em all.   

Sunday, October 20, 2013

It was one Tough Mudder for sure - Tough Mudder - Mid-atlantic 2013 - Saturday.

It was a good day, to die hard.

Whoops wrong movie. 

The Gods WERE crazy!

@#$@$ there I go again. 

It was a cold and overcast Saturday morning as Team WolfPack rallied at the DKL Residence for the trip out to West Virginia to face the Tough Mudder Mid-Atlantic 2012 Event.  It's not a race.  Except against your friends and yourself.

11 Miles of trail.  1800 Ft of climbing.  22 Obsticles.  Mud and Water and Cramps and Pain.   That was what awaited us.  We left Vienna around 9 at hit the parking field a bit before 11.  At registration at 11:25 running a tad late.  Our official wave was 12:15 but we were dropping our bags and making final preps when it was called.  So we went out with the last wave of the day 12:30.

Last wave at 12:30?  I could've sworn they had waves running till 2 or later on reg.  Maybe they rescheduled them or something.  Regardless we queued up in the waiting zone, then we made it to the starting line wait after scaling over 5 or 7 foot Berlin walls. 

Prerace prep was cool and as the last group they didn't just play the National Anthem, we sung that mofo like the bad-asses we are.  And we were off at a slow conservitive pace.  1st REAL obsticles were a ways away not counting small mud holes/creeks/etc.  The first obsticle in some ways was the worst.  I got the dirtiest on it for sure it was a crawl under barbed wire and on the 2nd half they kept spraying us from a water truck with VERY cold water.  My bib was 2/3rd's torn off.  And I looked like a mud man.  I went thru one of the muddiest lanes I think.    And we were off.  Lots of hills and small mud sections till we eventually hit the Burn Zone.  No fire this year, just exercise.  20 pushups, run up and down a steep hill, 20 lunges, another steep hill up and down, 20 more pushups, another 2 hills.  Then it was time.

The Arctic Enema.  I jumped in and compressed too much and went under I shoulda gone under the board then, instead I had to pop up, breath and swim under.  More ICE at the far end then the front.  Getting out was hard and starting to run sucked but at least I was mostly clean!  And after a few minutes I was pretty warm and dry.  Nike's Pro Combat Dryfit T-shirt saved me.  Next time I wear long sleeves for crawling stunts.    And we were off but group was suffering major fragmentation 12 dudes staying together is hard.  One guy's ankles were already a mess.  We chose to split in 2 groups.  At first I was gonna stay with the slow guys but I wanted to push a bit faster due to the upcoming course clear at the halfway mark at 2:30.  I made it to that at 2:05.  I'm shocked the 2nd group must have made it with minutes to spare I think.  I pushed on with several different groups of people till I caught up to the main group after some giant mud pits.  I needed to empty/clean out shoes but honestly couldn't undue the laces.  Too mucked up.  I hung on.  We continued to push on thru stuff like the beard, Wheelbarrow, Log Carry, Log Hopping.  But my elbow went whack and me and my new partner Jimmy skipped the BIG Berlin Walls.  12 foot of suckiness.   Crazy zig-zag Gorrilla Killer Hills then pushups for Wounded Warriors.  I only could manage 10 at that point.  My arms were shot.  Then we pushed on throu 2 balance exercises.  Skipped the electric eel due to cramps starting in legs  a few nasty crawl things in pipes and in water were tough but fun.   Near the end I had to skip Everest also as my elbow could take the pulling/etc and I was already banged up.  Tried to climb up to walk the plank but legs cramped up again a bit over halfway up.  The other electric stunt wasn't bad at all with carefull-ness got hit 1x.  Pushed on and we were basically DONE. 

Finished in 3 hours.

Our team with out shirts got lots of support and people could tell we were a team, anytime I was lagging or me and Jimmy were we heard our team was just ahead.  Cutting of the sleeves and shit really helped me not be bound up in the shirt.  Garmin watch kicked ass, it kept me on pace and let me know I needed to keep pushing. 

Gear Good -
Trail Shoes - Worked well and way better tracktion then sneakers, only slipped once and that was cause I under committed on dry/loose.  No problems with wet/mud other than crap getting into them. 
Nike Pro Combat Dri-fit compression - Awesome, just use long sleeve next time to protect elbows a bit. 
Socks - Wool - Okay, kept feet warm even after being wet. 
Shorts - Reebok Crossfit Boardshorts - Nice, zippered pocket worked well.
Garmin GPS - Worked pretty well though did loose 600-800 ft of elevation depending on site.

Bad Gear -
Shirt - Go long sleeve. 
Legs - Knee pads or 3/4 lengths tights with knee padding. 
Socks.  Maybe layer up with a compression long sock to protect shins from scrapes.
Socks Part 2 - Find someway to keep shit out of shoes. 
Shoes - See Socks Part 2.
Bring Sharpie of decent size to mark up arms/legs/head's with #.
Bring real shoes for after - not flip-flops.  Half mile in/out was a beast.  

Training Notes -
Requires SERIOUS upper body training.  I estimate a fit competitor needs to be able to do 15-20 pull ups. Plank for several minutes and have some leg strength training also.  My legs were mostly okay.  I would raise my base target to 8 or 9 miles with more hill work.

Friday, October 18, 2013

It's time to start running!

It's time to start running!

As he says at the start of the video.  Tough Mudder for me is tomorrow Oct 19.  Distance wise I'm not super worried, I've done up to 7 miles and with a 3-4 hour eta for finish with obstacles and such I'm confident I have the leg power to finish with some longer rides in the bag.  The elevation may be a biatch but I will survive. 

The obsticles are another thing.  Arctic Enema, Berlin Walls and a few others do scare me a bit.  I am debating skipping the 2 electric ones due to my old school occasional heart beat issues.  Temp should be low 60's at start.  Debating tech layer  Might go pick up a dryfit long sleeve tonight.  Also must err pad the man nips. I know what happens to them when I run a long time and I don't want to repeat the last time.  Tech compression underwear for sure.  Wool socks.  Wolf Pack t-shirt.  May also look at some compression/tech running tights.

Gotta trim my nails for sure tonight, some are fricking claws I realized.

I'm nervous but excited. 

Full report Sunday or Monday for sure. 

Monday, October 07, 2013

Rainy after all

Seriously raining here today in DC.  Ma nature is getting brassed off the gov't is still shutdown me thinks.

Went into DC yesterday for some cycling around the monuments with Pete from Freshbikes Mosiac.  Good group and good times.  Crazy to see all the empty roads blocked off by barriers and monuments also.  You could have a pretty cool crit down there on the weekend safely right now instead of say Haines Pt.  It was a nice but somewhat ridiculous 40 mile ride.

Now that fall is coming in last week was my first longer MTB ride since the summer.  Going to start pushing harder on the rides and getting in good pre-rides.  13 Last week this week I'll push for a few more.  Though honestly I did stop not too long after 8.  With another 25 minutes I could have pushed out another 2 or more miles. 

Tough Mudder training continues.  Did a 4 on Satuday at lunch and felt like crap.  I need to feel WAY better on next weeks Saturday so maybe Thursday will be a lighter mtb day.  Ugh.

Also still have to figure out gear for the race.  I'm thinking I'm going to wear gloves. And right now I'm planning on a longsleeve tech woolie shirt for base layer. Legs I'm not sure about.  Might get a set of tech  tights.  Not sure.  Weather still isn't clear.  We are running above average so far. 

Monday, September 30, 2013

Jet Lagged

It's been a busy few weeks and now I'm heading into a VERY busy stretch here at work due to people on Vacation.  I think for most of Oct I'll be grinding at least 10 hour days plus being on call.  Ugh.

Good times this weekend starting with too much b33r on Friday though more moderate than last week by FAR.

Then my one of my roommate's rolled with me down to the Crystal City Diamond Derby.  It was a blast an he wants to try some single speeding.  We shall see if we can find him something cheap enough.  Looking at Performance's Langer stuff and bikesdirect for now.  He's a smaller guy and Craigslist is suprisingly light on small bikes currently.  Versus they have a glut of stuff for gangly tall people like me, since I'm not looking for myself.  Thanks Murphy!

Rebuild of road bike drive train a few weeks ago was a stunning success.  Still not sure if all the creaking was from pedals which definetely needed re-greasing (they spun 3x times versus Speedplay says 1 to 1.5 is normal.  2 means re-grease.  Or if it was cleaning and relubing the whole BB setup.  I think it was both.  Who knows?  It's quiet and I like it.

My mtb has really suffered this summer with Road and CX riding/commuting but my mileage is WAY up.  I'm over last years mileage just this summer.  Hoping to get out for a decent CCT haul south tonight after work. 

CCDD was a great event, with some cool stuff in the Open and some hard racing in the grand prix.  Didn't get to stay for the team event as my friends back was hurting from a  recent injury.  Lots of crazy costumes, with some very nice ladies for sure!  Good beer, cool people.  Was a tad warm, next time I'll wear shorts.  And next year maybe I'll race in the open category. 

Monday, September 09, 2013

Where did some go?

Summer has nearly passed me by this year again leaving me staring back thru a hazy goblet of heavily hopped IPA.  The golden tint of everything through this view makes the tale much more bearable. 

The short story of the summer, is I rode a LOT.  Well for me.  YTD I'm at 149'ish logged gps activities at just under 2000 miles by the end of today.  Last year I had 110'ish and 1350'ish total.  Checking back in the logs I was at #79 June 1.  Not bad considering I also had 2 weeks of forced car commuting and was sick as hell for a week and change also in Aug. 

The commute in the AM was extremely nice due to a perfect temperature and nice scenery on the WOD.  Pretty busy morning to.  I did get passed but the guy was a total hammerhead on his commuting road rig.   I tried to keep up but just couldn't push that fast that soon.  

Doing a regular group ride out of FreshBikes Mosiac on Wednesday with PeteB and it's been good.  I can see that in general I've been ticking up faster since the start adding about 1.1mph since the start.  Last week was much slower due to tired legs and then HORRIBLE traffic coming down Gallows where we typically are flying.  Basically had to almost walk before the 66 overpass to the metro station.  Hopefully I'll be fresher myself this week.  Going to push HARD to ride to work 3 or 4 days this week, though if I work from home on Saturday I might accept 3.

 Busy week this week with MORE BOD meeting tonight, Tuesday has riding options, Wednesday MUSE (no freshbikes,  oh well), Thursday TNR, Friday uh something.  Jeez.   Plus I'm on super grind at work starting tomorrow potentially for 2 weeks while boss goes to Pakistan.  But the extra money will be nice.  Will have to pack extra lunch.  Today I packed a huge salad with chicken and a half PB&J.

Will weight in tomorrow for the first time in a while. 

Also had Boatswain HLV and IPA last night from TraderJoe's.  Not bad for $2 big boys!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Funder Thuck.

That pretty much describes work, life and the weather this week.

I wimped out early in the week on riding to work Monday and Tuesday (well Tuesday I had to as I was driving in from elsewhere)  Monday I did haul home a 30lb system for some work and it wouldn't have fit in my bag.

Pace wise I'm picking back up on the CX bike slowly.  Was sub 28 in today I believe and I hit most of the lights nearly perfectly.  I stopped briefly at Nutley/Couthouse and 123/Courthouse but rolled every other light I actually made.  Good think considering how late I left!

The ride in was nice but super humid, glasses were super fogged up by the time I hit Sunset Hills I had them way down on my nose to see.

Yesterdays ride home I dogged the storm by leaving work late, 4:30 or so.  It was disgusting on the ride home.  I did a tuneup ride working on adjusting my new pedals/shoes around 6 and it was much better.  Not sure about the Pearl road shoes, they may be a tad narrow for me in the main foot, though the heel is almost perfect.  Will play with adjustments a bit more.  Right cleat needs to move inwards to move my foot outwards a bit so I can add a bit more heel in angle back on the cleat.  As of now its too far out by a tiny bit to keep my heel from hitting the chain stay.

Tonights WF ride is not looking great weather wise once again.  My plan is currently to ride, but who knows maybe it won't storm in WF land, like yesterday.  I suspect W@W is using up our good weather luck for the year.

Got in new breakpads for the MTB but I won't put em on till next week especially under the threat of shitty, err I mean gritty conditions.  Nothing like ruining new pads due to grinding the grit of the CCT/Etc.

Mileage has fallen back off.  Since the Birthday Epic Week, really to be a better rider I've got to get a 2nd day off a week and put in 1 longer ride, my Sundays just aren't regular enough.  Or I need to commit to a ride every Sunday be it a 6AM early bird or a forced march later in the day.

Weighed in yesterday at a shocking 196.  Holy crap!  Talk about un-expected especially after the Garbage In and Out weekend that last weekend was.

Well the hot fudge and brownie ice cream sunday I just ate helped that I'm sure, especially after eating salads for lunch 2 days in a row.

And to raise the level of awesomeness of this post I offer this for your viewing pleasure:
 TheBadPiper covering AC/DC's Thunderstruck.

Monday, June 17, 2013

100 Miles of Nowhere.

I crossed the 39th barrier recently.  Several notable stars on IMDB have their birthday listed on the same day.  And apparently the kard-ass-ian spawn arrived around then also.  Sigh.  There goes the neighborhood. 

I also believe I have come up with the most impossible classification for my #100MoN:

100MoN Workus Intrerruptus 2 Day Ride - You must make your commute to work, do at least 4 hours of work, Then go out and do at least 60+ additional miles.  Then the next day you must do any remaining mileage on the route you originally took.

My plan was to ride the WHOLE W&OD, but since I couldn't  get all day Saturday off I had to make it a 2 day since I had a 7PM dinner commitment. So on Saturday I blasted off to work at about 6:35 and did the 8 mile ride in.  Worked till almost noon then headed back out on the warpath out to Purcelville VA at the trails end.  An 8 to 10 mph headwind on the way out really wasn't bad.  My book on MP3 kept me rolling along instead of bored out of my mind.  At the trails end I stopped, at half a chocolate peanut butter sandwich and headed back.  In s'Leesburg I stopped to refill water and have some Coke.  It was damn good.  Making VERY good time back so far.  I thought wow I might have a slight opportunity to actually do this in one day.

Then real life caught up to me.  About 5 miles out of Leesburg my left leg cramped a bit.  I pedaled slower and lightly and eventually it cleared.  But it cost me.  I must have been pedaling a bit strangely as my left foot then decided to throw a fit just outside of Herndon.  Couldn't put any real weight/power into it.  My MTB shoes also contributed I think.  Not really meant for 4 or more hours in the saddle and at 5 years old they are pretty worn out.  Finally made it back  to my office in Reston for Advil, half a Taylor Gourmet Deli Sandwich and more Coke.  After checking on things and checking time I realized with my slower speed on the 2nd half back I had ended up with the same time out and back between work.  When it should have been 20 minutes shorter or more.  Foot felt a bit better but I still couldn't put full power into it or stand for long.  Time to call part 1 a day.  And back to starbase Vienna for a shower change and off to dinner.  But still I must note, my longest cycling set and day 76 for the day and 68 for the main ride.  That was my longest recorded total ride by 20 miles.  With a 16.2 average.  I've been commuting to work and back at about 15.6 lately with some faster days in the 16 range.

WAY too much dinner and drinks that night lead to the morning ride plan abandonment.  So I had to wait to finish till yesterday afternoon.

Part Deux was upon me and my motivation was failing slightly.  I went out to finish off the W&OD.  I had added a bit extra in Vienna the day before to  push my total up past 75 as I new Vienna was at MM 12'ish and I wanted to not have to go way further to complete my 100.  So off I went, foot wasn't bad, legs were a  bit slow.  Got down to Falls Church with some on and off rain sprinkles.  Stopped in at Bikenetic to chat on shoes and phone cases.  I need new shoes.

Then back off down to Mile 0.  It's a nice ride down from that point.  Fly down Glebe and I hopped on the road.  Found where Phoenix Bikes is and looked at their stock for a friend.  Nothing like what he needs alas.  And on I went.  I was craving a beer so I rolled into Shirlington but no where really safe to leave my bike unlocked where I could watch it and I wanted to head back as it was already 4:30.  Quick stop for another partial coke and back up the trail I went.  2 climbs sucked but the rest wasn't bad.  Way easier than the @#$@# Custis trail for sure.  Lots of runners and walkers out in both directions so I wasn't pushing speed very often.

And it was done.  105 miles in 6 hours 42 minutes over 2 days.  With 4 hours of work in part during the 1st.  Next year I'll do the whole damn thing in one shot.  In fact my goal is to do my first full century in the next month or two.  I've been pretty much a 50 mile a week guy..  This week I hit 140 and wasn't "dead" though I made 1 mistake yesterday.  On saturday I went for a 2.5 mile walk post ride (after a snack and 20 minute rest).  Yesterday I just vegged then went to dinner with no walk.  And today I'm paying my knees woke me up at around 4am.  2 advil later I feel almost human but they were sore, no ride to work today alas.  And I suspect no run.  May have to do a short ride on the CCT or something. 

My SIDI eagle 6's from 5 years ago are just worn out.  Now I must begin searching for a new shoe in ernest.  I want something cheaper for road and I think I will go SIDI again for mtb. 

Thursday, June 13, 2013

F Spring.

You know what else Spring brings besides cooler temps.

It brings rain.  GOBS of F'n rain.

Since June 1st - Between 4.5 and 6.5 depending on where you are in NVA.  MD has gotten more I think.  Today we may add an inch or more again.  And once again it's looking like no TNR.  Though I did get some pre-ride pre-rain action last week.  And it's almost the same forecast, clears for a bit this afternoon then turns to rainy/t-storm central starting at 5 PM for the next 4 or 5 hours.  Ugh.  I might have to commit to that ultimate sin after work.  A run.

Desolation and other things are setting in I fear. 

Yesterday I did bike to work, then opted to drive over to Fresh Bikes at Mosiac District and do the Wed ride in Vienna with Pete.  It was a blast, pretty informal.  Low key I suspect also.  I averaged 15.6.  In all 3 of my last 3 rides this week.  I definitely wasn't pushing last night so I know I could hold faster and this was after 16 miles in commuting also.  But it wasn't like I was Pete who had done 111 miles earlier in the day.  But we all know Pete ain't all there, in the best possible way.

Also met up with Mike R, Vince A, and Sean C who I haven't seen in a while either.  It was a lot of fun and I plan to be back next week with the course actually loaded.

Strava continues to be a tool of mostly good in driving me to push myself in distances and time and a bit  in speed.  I simply also realize that I'm not going to be strong enough for a while to challenge in some of the very regular segments out there.

This weekend I have flagged for my 100MoN for  If I get Saturday off it will be awesome.  Sunday won't be quiet as nice.  Oh well we will see.  It may have to be a 2 day split also.  Who knows.  I'd like to do it as 1 but life has a way of interrupting.  At the least it will be 100KM of Nowhere.  Out and back to P-ville will be 100KM+  I estimate actually that would be near, uh 109KM/68 miles. What will really suck is after I do whatever I do I will need to spend 20 minutes walking per 2 hours of riding to keep my legs from revolting for the next 3 to 10 days.  I may even just build it into the ride and walk a few sections to keep the legs looser. 

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Spring! Redux!

Wow, I didn't think it would happen but Spring has returned after what was Summer weather last week.  60's this morning and the previous morning and highs for the next 10 days in the low 80's and lows in mid 60's.  It's a beautiful time to ride your bike in DC.  Or really do anything outdoors.  I've run 2x times in the last 2 weeks and thats a LOT since March for me.  Trying to get back to 2 to 3 runs a week alternating maybe.  Need to start building for 10 miles by mid summer then start making the terrain harder.  I'm solidly in the 10 minute area right now and that should improve into the low 9's fairly easily.  Beyond that I'm not going to push that hard.

Did a bit of surprise gravel road riding Saturday on the way out to the half marathon J was doing in VA.  It was a blast, plus it's somewhere I was familiar with as I grew up in the area.  The big changes is some BIG damn houses. 

On my 2nd ride into work for the week.  Yesterday was great, today was a bit slower and I was over dressed, it ended up being a degree warmer I think today than yesterday yet I wore full kit.  D'oh!

Strava is pushing me to push myself and try and go faster/do better in shorter stuff, now I just need to add distance.  Debating doing a post ride from work out the WOD a bit and back or just going home first then going east.  Depends on the winds.  Whichever I do I want to head into the winds first. 

Beer wise I've had a few things but nothing super new or unusual.  Working down stock in the b33r fridge.  The last unusual/rarity was a DFH 75 with maple, that I couldn't really taste the maple in at all, versus say Crown Royal Maple which is like pancake syrup with whiskey.  I am gearing up for a brewing run soon, going to order a La Choufe Houblon clone from Northwest Brewer and get it going very soon.  And once it's in secondary I want to get a fall beer also in by the end of June.  Basement should stay nice an cool enough for good fermentation. 

As of yesterday's morning weight in I was 200 flat.  Not bad considering I ate like a horse all weekend including one of the largest pieces of carrot cake ever.  Should be back to sub 200 by end of week, I'd like to solidly set at 190 again.  But if pigs had wings....we'd have no pulled pork.

And I just found the most awesomely disgusting youtube food channel.  EpicMealTime.  Bacon is your god...bow down before it.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Development Arresting

Clip and Walk was what happened Monday.  Sure I rode my bike into the area and in between work area's but riding isn't really a valid description.  I did get most of the outside perimeter trail trimmed.  Also cleared the north entrance (but not the trail) and the southern entrance.   Also made a good dent into clearing the little used trail behind the lower ballfield.  It's a safer exit than the southern entrance for sure, you don't have to make the hard right or end up in traffic.   Or you may end up being on the recieving end of the next Emma Way of Norwich England who just hit the cyclist knocking him off the road into a shrubbery.  Hopefully the Knights of Ni go and deal with that uppity wench forthwith.

Hitting the trails today then I'll ride in again on Friday on the road I hope.  143 Miles'ish into May so far, this should put me near 170 before the weekend. 

And in the cosmic jokes of the week, a friend sent J flowers since our elder cat Merlin was put to sleep last week.  Well it included Lily's.  Lily's are VERY poisonous to cats.  Stupid remaining cat decided to chow down on some fallen leaves/etc.  He is now enjoying a 3 day stay at the vets.  At a cost of a small country's daily GDP.  Sigh.  I think in the last 2 months cat bills/etc are going to have topped the cost of a VERY nice mountain bike. 

They do say the average American household is now spending 15K per pet over it's lifetime in food and care. 

For now this is my weekend plan.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Humidty is Hell

Got a good ride in on Sunday AM.  Definitely not feeling full awesome yet, but doing better.  Still have a fair amount of chest congestion/crud.  Nothing like coughing while your getting up and seeing a green phlegm ball land on your nice white comforter. 

So I rolled outa bed a bit before 8 and after consulting multiple weather sites I dressed for damp/light right/slight cool with my 3/4 length cycling shorts, bibs, short sleeved jersey and my high vis wind/water shell.  By 8:30'ish I was rolling out.  Hit Vienna and promptly ran into a big 5k run/walk on the WOD heading west.  Sigh.  Cleared that and raced off to Hunters Mill.  At HM I opted to jump of the WOD and try Hunter Station Rd.  ZOMG BFH!  That hill is SERIOUS and I wasn't mentally or physically prepped/rolling fast to start with and it was a slow 3 minute slog.  Up the rest of the way and over on Twin Brooks.  No speed records for sure.  Then back down to the WOD near work.  And out I went, rain had stopped but I didn't want to.  I rode almost to Leesburg.  Really debated going the whole way but the morning was passing and I knew if I kept going partially I might be tempted to go all the way to P-ville and that would be bad.  So I turned around and headed back.  At Smith's Switch I stopped to use the facilities.  And opted to pack the jacket into a jersey pocket.  Sorta.   A bit big.  Back to Vienna was not bad even almost PR'd one section.  Saw several MORE friends on the trail on the way back.  

Only had 2 Lance Waffles on the course of the day so far, so I was starved when I was done.  A PB and honey sandwhich got me thru my shower and setting the washer to wash the nasty cycle wash.  Then it was left over chicken tenders.  I spent the afternoon dragging due to lack of caffeine, so I eventually got one at the store when getting the weekly necessaries.  I also found out Mr.Clean Magic Erasers are awesome at removing random tire scuffs/etc on house walls.   I've been starving since the ride though. 

I also pulled all my winter gear for storage and re-oganizer my closet, much easier to find/get to stuff for now for sure.  I realized I now have near 13 cycle jerseys.  Oops I think I'm off a few as at least 1 maybe 2 are in the basement.  Damn.  Oh well. 

Tonight I've got clip and ride or more like clip and walk trailwork at Wakefield.  I'll be happy if one other helper shows up.  I hope 10 don't as I don't have that many pruners!  :P

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Down with a Sickness and a cat and a finger.

Last weeks free-meal-o-rama from work led to no less than 3 fellow co-workers being anywhere from sorta sick to sick as hell with a cold/flu/cough thing that punched my ticket over the weekend.  The last few days I've been operating by the graces of liquid Mucinex cough and cold.  It's helped me mostly sleep at night without too much drainage and coughing.  Though I did have one good fit at bedtime or just after.  But the 2 previous nights i did get at least 6 hours of good sleep before waking to cough/etc. 

Otherwise the suckiness has continued from last weekend un-detered.  Cat had a bad day last thursday again, J said he was in bad shape which he was, Friday was spent on cat watch.  He was doing a bit better but the old guy was just not doing as well as 2 weeks ago before the last dip.  Saturday I went to work for a bit then came home.  J was waffling on taking the guy to the vet to be put to sleep, I convinced her not to since we had mobile vet coming Monday afternoon.  

Monday cat's still not much better and in someways worse he's being a bit more "hidey" spending more time in the basement then out.  But not fully hiding.  Vets come and after 30 minutes of discussion or so we decide enough is enough.  The cancer and the diabetes are just too hard on the guy.  He's not walking well and his  jaw is cracking when eating.  We put him to sleep.  Just after the 1st injection J is feeding him some turkey when he bites her index finger on the right hand at the big joint.  They wash it out and we continue and in a bit the guy is gone.  He was a great cat for sure.  2 years on the big D survival for a 14+ year old cat is pretty impressive.  He was actually at least 15 1/2 by the end, I suspect it could be up to a year more however.  The vet was awesome and handled things really well.  Then informed us J should go to the ER or the minute clinic for antibiotics due to cat bite infections being bad especially in hands.  And off we went. 

2 hours later we were done at the Minute Clinic.  J with a scrip for Kflex.  We ate, came back and got the scrip and went home.  Next morning I went back to work and J woke up sore err and more swelled and went to the ER.  ER gave her IV antibiotics, put it in a cast type thing and had her keep it elevated and return wednesday for a check.  Back yesterday we both went.  Not too busy at 8 but still almost 10 before we saw the PA.  Meanwhile crazy homeless lady in the hospital comes up and rips a bandaid right off J's hand!  We later hear her telling nurse her height is 7 foot 5!  hahaha.  Full on crazy!

J's hand is now in a finger splint only but she is to keep it elevated and soak it in warm water 2x per day.  Tomorrow she has a follow up with a plastic surgeon (huh will it scar that bad?!?!). 

Tonight is Wakefield TNR we have a mod chance of a storm but I think we're going to edge it out again.  Then Friday is Bike to Work Day.  Finally gonna get my tshirt after 7 years!  Well I only road for about 4  years of days.  2 years I mtb'd in thru the mud!  It was nuts.  last year I road the roads.  This year I could hit 2 stops if I wanted Vienna and Reston.  We'll see how time goes.

Hopefully by Sunday I'll feel good enough to lay down a 40-45.  In the next month I've gotta do my 100 miles to no where.  I may have to 2 day it not sure at this point as I have a LOT of commitments and not much time in the next month.

For now I'm off to check on ole one hand (what I call J in reference to Jaime Lanister in Game of Thrones).

Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Iron Thone Game Man Vikings 3.1256

I don't often comment on my media habits but I do have to give big props for Iron Man 3 as being way better than 2, and almost catching 1 for being enjoyable entertainment and how well it came together.  Further on that note I'm also enjoying the heck out of Game of Thrones and watching Jamie Lannister, The Kingslayer, trying and cut a steak with only 1 hand.  Vikings has also been surprisingly good.  Imagine game of thrones on semi-basic cable.  Almost.  Still really enjoyable.  The fights can be brutal. 

Otherwise my regular media habits amount to books on tape when driving and occasionally
when riding. 

Otherwise it's music like this:

Or Red Fang or such. 

Riding my bike otherwise a bit, rain kept me off Monday and Tuesday but I'm back today.  Think I shaved a full minute of my best time this AM even on the Volpe with my commuting pack on.  Might try it again on Saturday packlessly and see what happens when I do it on the Fuji Carbon.  I've also named my bikes now that I've gone dark side and joined Strava. 

Paragon is Miss Daisy....
Volpe is uh Volpe Vengefull
Fuji Team Carbon is now Kamehameha. 

I think I was a bit drunk mentally when I was naming them but hey whatever. 

Photo's from MC 2013 are now online surprisingly from me.  I expected it to take into 2014 for me to find the cable.

Dinner tonight with the co-slaves, then ride home.  I suspect a probable b33r stop either at WF or VI.

Monday, May 06, 2013

Camped Out 2013 - Forescore and Seven

The drive back sucked.  It was rainy and extremely foggy at times, around 6 I pulled off to gas up and took a 45 minute power nap as I was falling asleep at the wheel almost.  I rolled out hard then and made good time the rest of the way back to Woodstock VA where I arrived about 11 pm.  I checked myself into my own room and when parking only saw Brett's van in the lot.  I didn't care enough to even bring my bike in out of the on and off rain.  I turned on the TV for about 10 minutes and was wiped out.  I slept till 8 the next morning.  Got up showered and hit the breakfast line.  Lo and behold half the missing campers were they.  Apparently the nutters hit Carvins Cove at night on the way back and didn't hit the hotel till 1 AM or so!

We all watched the weather and patterns as we ate crappy eggs, cinnamon buns, and such.  It looked like we would be in just the right place and have a mostly dry day.

By 9 most folks were up and functional and we loaded up to go to Dunkin for some good coffee and donuts pre-ride.  We took off and everyone drove past the DD but me which was right around the corner. I about died laughing.    By 9:40 we were on our way to Camp Roosevelt.

We hit CR around 10:45 or so I think and prepped and loaded up.  Started with a 2 mile'ish dirt road climb.  Foggy as hell amazing overlook I'm sure.  My one good photo is of everyone looking like were about to take off down the overlook.  Then we crossed the road and climbed the rest of the way up on some nice but techy singletrack.  Had to hike a bit more than I wanted but it was good.  Amazing view at the top and then a pretty impressive descent.  Not huge like Saturday but still pretty good.  Nice ride with mix of conditions, much more in my capability matrix.

Near the end I was catching the back of the pack and had just waived them onwards when I hear CREEK/Crack! 

FCK!  Chain break.  The last rider had just went around the hill and my swearing loudly had drawn no one back.  An examination of the chain showed one bad link, an outer so I would loose no length.  Dig out the big multi tool.  Dig out the spare QL10.  Dig out the kitchen sink.  Got the bad section out, got the link ready.  Noticed chain is VERY dry from rain on drive/overnight even though I lubed the hell out of it the afternoon before leaving the cabin.  Uhg.  And the rear D is having issues not shifting down to high gear!  a few hits of a rock and shifting fixes it eventually.  Reconnect it and flip the bike back over.  And start repacking when HO comes back looking for me.  I tell the story and we laugh.  And it's .8 miles to the car at this point.  A quick grind out very carefully and we're back.  We start to change and have a beer when in rolls the local forest rep.  State or Fed I can't remember but DK is trading war stories and we all want a beer.  She leaves after 15/20 minutes.  And it's beer  time.  We enjoy a few last official beers of man camp and head off.  We all hit Jalisco in Strausberg VA for some tasty texmex.  Damn good and we're on the road at 5pm on the way home. 

And home a bit before 7.  Unload most of the crap, a load of laundry in the wash and I'm done and passed out at about 9pm, with dreams of cougars, unicorns, tar heels and all the other hijinks of MC 2013. 

Friday, May 03, 2013

Camped Out 2013 - Part Threesome

When we last left our intrepid hero's, the Man Camp 2013 Appetizer battle had begun.  Some of us brought our A games, and well some slackers just brought their appetite. 

Knowing my recipe had some complexity and 2 slower parts I rushed in upon our return to claim a pan on the stove and to get my other part into the oven first.

My recipe of choice was:  Hipster BLT's. 
8 Slices of Crispy Fried Bacon  (I used Applewood Smoked). Diced into nice chunks.  Next time I use 12 slices, more bacon please!
1/2 Cup Shredded Cheese - I used Monterrey Jack.
1/3 Cup Mayo - I used an A-1 Spicy Mayo from Helmans or such - Plus 2 table spoons of horseradish mayo/sauce from Safeway. 
Mix Ingredients together in bowl.
10-12 Grands Honey Biscuits.
1 large very ripe tomato  sliced in half down middle and de-cored to give 1/2 tomato slices. 
1/2 large tub of Mach lettuce. 

Split biscuits, put nice layer of Mach lettuce down.  Put tablespoon+ of cheese/bacon/mayo mix on lettuce and a slice of tomato. 

Everyone seemed to love it, they were VERY tasty I think.  But it still wasn't enough.  I got beaten by Thai chicken skewers with a humus and siracha sauce in 2nd, and 1st was Brett's homemade sausage mushroom on dainty crackers with fresh thin slices of manchego.  I love manchego and I REALLY did like both other dishes but I don't feel they were better.  Oh well I still placed.  Karl did tasty quesadilla's.  Darius did a salad that was good, but I understand his lack of effort, pulling the whole trip together is a HUGE deal.  Someone else had something but it wasn't even in the running. 

Then we had steaks.  I had a small steak that I think someone switched on me.  It was unimpressive if it wasn't.  Oh well next time I supervise my own steak.  :)  Darius did a great job cooking it even if the steak itself was CRAP!

We had a grand ole time.  Enjoyed lots of great wine, then a few beers after also.  We hot-tubbed for near an hour and by 2AM everyone was sacking out.   I was actually one of the last too be tired and in bed for a change.   Plenty of water kept us from being hung over. 

Rain of a serious magnitude was the order for Sunday.  No ride so after breakfast we opted to hike Linville gorge/falls in the rain.  We hiked 3 miles'ish and saw some great views of the falls.  Several times I went trail nuts and cut/fixed drains were the rain was pooling badly.  They needed a scout troop for a weekend and I could have the whole place mostly fixed.  2 Area's needed a drain put in.

So after the hike we detoured back to where the ride started the single track the day before.  Apparently Darius had lost his gps early on.  They head out we chill in the cars.  30 minutes later they are back and have it.  It wasn't very far in and they found it on the way back. 

A quick stop for coffee turns into the slowest coffee ever.  The guy could only take 1 order/make 1 drink at a time. Oy no starbucks in his future.  I managed to spill half my hot chocolate everywhere and cleaned it up myself so he wouldn't slow down more.

Back at the house and we change and pack up.  I volunteer to stay as no one started the dishwasher before the hike and it has to be emptied before we can leave.  Everyone else headed out around 3.  Dishes finished at about 4:30 I dried em and headed out after a quick stop at Wendy's.  5 Hours of driving a head.  And boy was it rainy, foggy and getting dark early.  My favorite drive!

Thursday, May 02, 2013

PTI - Just one of those mornings.

Pardon the MC 2013 interruption but I have a few anecdotes to share from yesterday this morning. 

If you are excited for your first bike to work day in a while you inevitibly forget to set the extra early alarm you need.

While grumbling about missing out on the ride you forget to grab your keys, only realizing it when you have walked out the door shutting it.  And checking the stupid lock realizing the knob is locked and you have to call someone out of bed to let you back in. 

My mtb still had water in it yesterday when I near fully disassembled it, blew it out with compressed air, re-greased everything, and stuff.

Before a ride where the bike has been in the rain over night you must re-lube the chain even if you put a ton of lube on the night before or it will break. 

My derailleur was VERY loose on at least Monday's ride.

Beware of Cougar Mountain, in addition to Cougars it may have Tar Heels and also the rarely observed Flying Honey Badger.  I think one bounced off my helmet luckily at one point.  I was able to escape down the mountain before it woke up.

I need more hike-a-bike cross training.

More to come later I'm sure.

Camped Out 2013 - Part Duece

No alarm clocks necessary on day 2 of Man Camp.  The earliest to bed folks were the earliest to arise and from my position on the main floor couch everything is happening near by including 2 different people making coffee 2 different ways.  The plan is currently our guide should arrive around 9:30 so we have 2 hours to get ready.  Not long considering 11 campers need to eat mass quantities of breakfast.  Frank fires the potatoes to start with.  A bit later sausage hits the skillets.  I go and prep my pack and gear.  Back up and I steal a PB&raisin&honey sandwich from Darius and I'm about ready.    One big breakfast later and we are mostly ready.  Then it comes in that we are shuttling.  Shit.  Out to the car to try and get a gear/change bag ready.  The sky is threatening the rain in the forecast. 

Guide shows up a bit before 10 and explains the plan.  Base ride should be around 18 miles (cough 22/23).  And 2 possible extensions.  Main ride should take 3 hours.  Maybe for him!  Lots of Descending!  We will start near 4800 feet and end up at 1600.  Mention of a few creek crossings.   And we are off a bit after 10.  4 vehicles of bikers on the road.  I'm rolling with Brett W in the VW battle van.  We drive up the mountain and eventually stop just on the other side of the parkway off 221 I think it was.  They now have to shuttle 1 car to the early stop and 2 more to the final end point. 

And we wait.  And Wait.  And Wait.  We are passed by a cougar in her Jaguar after her hike.  She's scarily friendly and eyeing us all up and down. 

The trip becomes officially known as Man Camp 2013 - Escape from Cougar Mountain!

Kegley works on his new rap songs for his new career.

We laugh and bullshit.  Todd B finds a random part on the side of the road and smartly saves it. 

An hour later the lone return car is back.  2 of the shuttle drivers report there cars in various states of fuel shortage from running on empty to possible on "Fumes".  The shuttlers prep and we are off.  On a 1.5 mile climb.  Up the Blue Ridge Parkway.  Several mechanical adjustments on the way and we finally hit the single track with a burly rock section doing a quick descent.  Then we roll a bit and start a bigger and slightly less techy descent.  Then it's a bit of up to the next big descent.  We are now down to 1700' from 4800'.  Damm. Now we climb back up to about 2400 feet and descend some rooty mess for a bit down to another screeming fireroad.

And the creek crossings start.  Shallow little things at first but eventually crossing 50-100 foot knee deep or more crossings on foot.  Lots of hike-a-bike also to go over insane rock piles etc.  7 or 8 big crossings.  And we stop for a more substantial break.  Or rather everyone else has waiting for me.  I stop and eat 3 bites of sandwich heaven.  And we are off and climbing again.  Back from 1650'ish to 2200.  And more creek crossings.  7 or 8 more of the same with some CRAZY hike-a-bike sections.  Did manage some stuff, but I wasn't beast enough for a lot of it.  Another big quick descent. 

6 hours later we finish with 18+ gps miles and what must be really 22/23 miles total.  I'm cooked and so are 3 or 4 others.  We opt to drive the shuttle to the next point.  BIG frickin climb up the mountain we pass everyone between half way and 3/4 of the way.  The lead group ops to do a quick last trail hit for the Sinkhole/Mine trail.  The others coming screaming down the mountain to the final meetup.  Last of the riders rolled in at 7:40 from the trail group.

We load up after some celebration and talking shit and we are off back up the mountain and praying that the fuel supply holds.  Which it does.  We eventually find a gas station with old school pumps and all 3 vehicles gas up.  The guide is behind a bit and doesn't need gas.  Back to the house about 8:30.  And Man Camp Appetizer Battle is ON!

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Camped Out 2013 - Part 1

I need a vacation.  From my last vacation.   Man Camp is always more adventure than I remember from the previous times, the good memories and time really dull the annoyances, that at times leave many individuals ready to pull out our hair.  Regardless it was a great weekend of riding, hiking, living, and in general behaving badly. 

I left early opting to skip Sherando on Friday by scooting out early Thursday morning.  But I was late leaving, and 10,000 bathroom breaks put in me in Pisgah at 3PM'ish.  After a brief consult of the guide book I opted for a shorter ride of Gumstead Gap.  It was a great ride even with a missed turn down an old out of use trail section.  Ran into a local named Rick who guided me to a great overlook of an amazing waterfall.  Finished up the ride, hit the local Holiday Inn Express (tons of bikers) and then went to Jordan Street Cafe.  Ran into Rick and his lady Heather and a bunch of other biking locals.  Great pasta dinner and beer.  Sacked out by about 10/10:30. 

Up at 8 and out to Dupont by 9:30.  Rode a bunch of the Northside trails I hadn't fully explored on my last visit.  What a workout and ride.  Back down to The Hub for some beers, some maps and a jersey.  Hit arby's at 3 and back to Asheville for a visit to The Wedge brewery.  Enjoyed a fabulous Porter and an Iron Rail IPA.  Damn.  Now it was about 5 and I took the Northern route back up 26 and east on some country roads to Banner Elk. 

Meanwhile Team Man Campers were just hitting Roanoke after Sherando.  Oy.  3+ hours behind.

Eventually I hit Boone a bit before 8.  Walked around and called the campers they were between Roanoke and Wythesville I think and had eaten dinner.  I went off in search of food.   Some good looking places but I didn't feel like anything bar'ish and I didn't want fancy or Pizza so I hit Our Daily Bread and had a great sandwhich and beer.  Messed around a bit more and decided to move up close to the route the Campers were coming in on near 105 off 421.  At the Lowes Market (grocery not HW!)

2 Hours later the Campers arrive and we spend 45 minutes raiding the store for food and b33r.  Eventually after a missed turn we hit the cabin at about 11:45PM.  Oy.  And it's near 2 before we're all settled and ready'ish for bed.  A few hit the hot tub.  I think it was 3 before I sacked out.  Ahead of use we had a EPIC ride awaiting. 

Monday, April 22, 2013

Moving along the trail

Back on the trusty volpe for the first time in 2 weeks and it feels different, a good different.  A steel CX bike is a different pony than a CF roadie.  2 Totally different arrows in the same quiver.  Flat Blade versus a point tip.  I can easily see the difference in the ride the 2 have, though the carbon bike is impressive in how well it does soak up road roughage. 

Getting on the MTB after the roadie is always a huge change, it felt positively.....lumbering?  Slow?  I dunno at first.  But as the night rode on, the fun returned, the quick hard turns, the power slide to trick around a bend, the bounce and push over a tree pile or two or three.    The swooping fun.  The horrid sucking climbs.  It was all good as the temps dropped.  The chill of your sweat on a fast downhill.  I eeked out probably 14'ish miles with 11 miles with the group.  Lots of fun.  20 plus riders out in the whole group, our small group of 2 made it a blast.  Even did the shitty end climb back from the damn of Accotink.

One more big ride this weekend and then Tuesday I'll bike in and that's all she wrote for pre-trip riding.

Saturday was an errands day since I worked late.  Sunday I did more chores/cleaning in the AM and hit CJ in the evening followed with a visit to Hard Times for chili, wings and beer post ride.  Damn good!

Monday morning it was sooo damn cold, 35 when I left the house!  I was way tooo tired and it was way to cold to ride in.  Now I'm left with a conundrum:  Tuesday.

Opt 1 - Ride to work 15 casual miles round trip
Opt 2 - Ride WF/Accotink after work - 10 or so semi-casual MTB miles
Opt 3 - Xterra Training ride at WF and 3 mile run. 
Opt 4 - 1&2
Opt 5 - Fuck it, go drinking.

I'm leaning towards Opt 6 for sure.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Rolling in the Hills

Went out yesterday on 16 miler and had a nice ride with J.  We rolled up MacAurthur Blvd from Glen Echo to Falls Rd in Poto-mac, then explored one of the huge uber-rich hoods.  Damn!  Big money for sure.  We rolled back on Oaklyn to Persimmon Tree Rd.  On the way we picked up a straggler and he rolled with us that entire section.  54 year old dude who had ridden out from NE DC on Rhode Island ave area.  We split while he took a break at the PT/McA Blvd intersection. 

The rolling hills in the hood were a blast on the bike and I wasn't even trying to power thru.  I did pop on the big climb up from Old Anglers to the end of the first big hill but I recovered quickly but J was struggling so I rolled slow.  So slow my gps thought I wasn't moving except about 14.6 miles vs 16.4 sigh.

Mancamp is 2 week so or less out and I'm not where I want to be fitness wise, but I am better off than I was I suppose a month ago, going to finish strong this next 7 days then back off till the trip.

No Pantera huh.  I wonder about Apocalyptica, I present instead:  Inquisition Symphony. 

Mellow jams aside I'm looking forward to a long weekend the hell outa dodge. 

Gonna try and either run 5 or bike 30 tonight.  Not sure which yet.  May have to work late. 

Trying to also make a decision on the pointless fundraise ride of the year - 100 Miles to No Where.  A 100 mile rd up and down a section of the WOD or  30/40 loops of the neighborhood.  Not sure what I can do and stand before loosing it.  Or is is it already a lost cause??

Friday, April 12, 2013

Carbon in the Now.

We're carbon based life forms.  It's a fact.  There is a dune buggy on mars trying to determine if there is other C based life or perhaps something really different. 

Early April became a bust for riding, though I did do my first trailwork in a LONG time at Accotink last sunday helping with a BIG rock armoring project that we doubled the planned length of.  Turned out super nice after riding it last night, really fun to descend.  A wee bit of a challenge. 

But did 2 days of bike commuting this week and that was good, might ride in tomorrow morning not sure for 3.  Plus I did work from home 1 day so 2 days of driving is not bad.  When I consider I was doing 6 days of near 30 miles thats 180 miles a week versus about 30 miles now.  That could drop 7K off my annual mileage a year. 

FYI - In breaking news the Vuvuzelu is apparently a dangerous weapon in South Africa.

Darius apparently managed to yank the entire seat tube came out of the frame.  The pictures are pretty wild.   I will try and link em here later. 

This weekend I have to do TAXES and pickup a shipment at UPS.  Ugh.  Think I will try UPS after work directly then try and maybe do taxes tonight.  Should get a fed refund.  VA is a mess due to issues with address changes not taking till last march/april versus 2 years ago so I still have to reclaim 3/4 months of md taxes.  I should end up with a bit back from that also.

Riding a  bit more this week, next week needs to be pretty epic then taper into the trip week.  I'm not ready but fuck it.  I'm gonna try and make up for my lack of fitness by loosing a few more lbs.  I'm fluctuating around 200-205 on work scale so I think 195 may be possible with being a good little boy for the next 2 weeks.  I hope. 

Other than the insane 3 days of near 90 degree or more heat I'm ready for spring!

Monday, April 01, 2013

Son of a Lich

Well we all survived day of the Lich aka Easter.  Who doesn't think a guy rising from the un-dead isn't quite kosher.  Bring me a bacon sarnie for sure when that happenes...Again? 

March was a bust for me activity wise.  Weather.  Parents.  Lack of personal motivation.  Weather.  It all came together in a giant conflagration of inactivity.  Maybe February was too much catchup.  I enter April only 3 activities behind pace for 180.  Maybe I'm focusing too much on that.  Shrug. 

Finally some miles back on the MTB in March.  Accotink is back in seaason and we've been riding it the last 3 weeks of the month.  Well 2 for me as I missed the 1st week while in FL.  Using the old giant for even  bar/junk commuting was painful the front fork is so blown out I look at it from 50 paces and it compresses a third.  Getting on the sag is about 50% if I'm careful.  Full body weight isn't good.  And the rear brake has 0 modulation.  Though if I need to stop I can glare at it also and lay down some impressive skids!

April is going to be gonzo.  Commuting to work (1st day tomorrow, I hope) the big trip at the end of the month.  And taxes.


Well I"m off to finish preping for the ride tomorrow.  My goatee is trimmed at least. 

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Top Fuel Madness

Down in Orlando for a few days, hanging with the family.  Finished semi-fixing the old Giant and have ridden around a few times on some short errands to the bar and for food.  It kinda sucks as the fork is shot I look at it and it compresses from 20 ft away.  I also realize that I need a shorter stem to.  It's also re-inforcing that I've bought my bikes to large, there is a reason why I love my 56cm cross bike.  I think my next mtb will be a large.

Went to Gatornationals today with pops and some friends, damn good races.  Got a bit of sun.  Walked about 4.5 miles around looking at cars, checking out stuff for sale, looking at the skanky race girls trying to sell cars, RC cars, etc.   Good racing, nitro in the air. Zoom!  Top speed I saw today was 326 and change.  Not bad for 1000 ft.

Been hitting WOB a bit.  Had some good stouts yesterday, lead by Evil Twin's Yin.  Damn good.  Also Widmers Russian Imperial Chocolate Stout.

Friday, March 08, 2013


The big snow of 2012-2013 turned out to be a big flub.  Sure out in Chantilly area I think we got 8 inches but by the time I left due to the damp/rain I think we were down to 4, and with 55 degrees the next day we are down to piles in parking lots mostly. 

The CCT North last night was wet but not as bad as I thought.  Accotink creek was definitely flowing strong though. 3 of us did a quick ride up and back.  Enjoyed a pitcher of beer and chips.  Good ride for sure, but not very exciting. 

Going to shoot for a big ride on Sunday. Maybe a mountain bike ride on Monday since I'm off and we'll have 3 days of 60+ weather, hoping for dry trails!

Friday, March 01, 2013

Here comes #4

This is only my 4th blogpost this year so far, not really a big deal either way, but compared to last year, I find I have not as much free time.  I'm definitely WAY more active in 2013 then 2012.  I've got a couple big things on the horizon this year:

Big Ride Week in late April for Man Camp 2013 in NC.
Half Marathon in June
Tough Mudder in October. 

So I've been pushing myself to get out and be more active.  And it hasn't been hard in many ways, but it also hasn't always been fun.  Doing those 11 miles on Monday sucked.  Last night my legs were not at power either, till near the end.  Though with my schedule this week, it's no wonder I'm a bit down, I'm at 43 hours as of right now and by the end of Saturday I should hit 60 hours.  Getting up at 3:35 the last 3 days has been hell.

February 2013 I hit 16 activities for 222 miles, up  from 13 and 155 miles in January.  Versus last year I had 16 activities for 176 miles in January and Febuary vs 29 for 374.  I'd like to hit 250 in March but it may be hard with going home for a week.  Though I now have my old beater Giant down there.  I will get SOME riding in. 

Tommorow brings me lots of options - Sleep in and eat a big ole breakfast, get up early and go ride the Shjed/Gambril loop from Sand Flats, or go do some trailwork at Meadowood with Doug V.

New MORE Event for April 4 (Thursday).  We are doing screening/fundraiser at Arlington Draft House for Reveal the Path.  Mike Dion's film from 2012 following some great riders in some amazing locations.  I've already purchased my tickets (1 for me, and 1 for someone else).

Still thinking about a BIG mtb trip this summer in June/July.  

Friday, February 15, 2013

This weather

Been staying  busy and active this 2013 so far.  I have an GPS logged activity for 20 of the last 45 days, covering 263 logged miles.  I think I did miss recording at least 1 run so far, and thats at 24'ish miles, and now that I'm up to doing 5 at a time that will keep climbing.

Have a big goal to be ready for a big trip down to Boone NC in late April.  2.5 Months out and I've gotta get in some distance rides and climbs. 

That brings me to my first dilemna, to do a moderate 30-40 mile gravel ride on the CX bike with moderate climbing this weekend or to go to Rosaryville and put a solid 30 miles on the MTB.  Sure it doesn't have a ton of climbing but it is a more constant work-out than other places.  Or I guess I could go to the Shjed and pound myself into idiocy.  While the climbs up are a good workout, doing it right away doesn't sound fun.

The weather is killing the WF TNR for the last 3-4 weeks and next week looks no better.  Ugh F@#$. 

Snow and more snow  Saturday and Sunday's current forecast, though only at 30-40%.  Hmmm. 

Back to work.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Jet Plane Ride

Gonna get on a Jet June.  For somewhere.

2 Years ago almost I did the big Pisgah Week trip for my birthday in June.  It was a blast, though doing it by myself was a  bit of a downer, I like my me time, but going with others would have been cool too, pushing myself a bit honestly. 

So the last week I've been thinking of what I wanted to do.  My first thought was another trip South to that area.  Maybe a week, maybe shorter.  Now I'm thinking of doing something else longer for the birthday and maybe doing NC again in May or Maybe July.  Not sure. 

What I am thinking of is hitting somewhere like BC, Sun Valley or a bunch of other area's that were just listed in a Bike/Mountain Bike article.  Not really the big places, but smaller ones where I can do a mix of things.  I want to do a 3-5 day trip then have a few days somewhere else to just do trip things.  Maybe hit a park for some hiking.  Shrug.  Some of the places have signifigant altitude 6 to 9k feet!  Some do 10+k of climbing though that should be a real test. 

Hoping today gets warm enough to melt a lot of the Rails to Trails stuff.  I really need to get in a long ride tomorrow. 

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Snow Baby!

Got a nice 1 to 2 inch dusting of snow last night, we will be having a BITCHIN snow ride tonight!  Hell ya!

The 45 North boots have been most excellent so far.  Wore them up at the shed last weekend in temps ranging from 46 to 56 and my feet were comfortable the whole time.  Tonight will be a real cold test, but I expect no issues.  I have had them out in the high 20's but tonight should be low 20's. 

Shed last weekend was rough, hadn't been out there in almost 9 months.  Thank god I didn't decide to pedal up from the maintenance yard.  We rode from hamburg and did Big Sucky Down, then Long Sucky UP out to Gambrill, then yellow to the connector.  Did the Big Gay DH trail down about halfway and turned around, then went down Grass Mower and over and back some other trail.  Took forever. WAY outa climbing shape. 

Last night I went to lube chain for today and my front tire was flat.  Suspect a very slow leak.  The new D is super nice and shortening the chain also reduced the chain slap a LOT.  New rear pads also helped stopping. 

Ian and I discussed my sizing issues after I messed up my elbow during a descent from locking it.  Ouch.  Think my next ride may be a large not XL.  Tough choice. 

Southern Tier's Un-earthly IPA - Big win!  Oak aged, very malty, nice hops.  Excellent.