Survived the weekend! Saturday was the Nutcase Intercontinental Single-Speed Cyclocross Championships of the Universe, aka NISSCCOTU, and Sunday was World Vegan Day. A report on what we did is here.
Training-wise, last week i rested up on Thursday and Friday, and then Saturday:
Okay, is it me, or does this sound like some sinister beast, perhaps a North American relative of the chupicabra?!
Anyway, the Errington (just outside of Parksville) race on Fletcher's Farm was a hoot, with an astounding number of ways to injure and maim yourself. =)
It started off with a Leman's-style 500m foot-sprint...and it was not unlike Braveheart.
I yelled FOR FREEDOM!!!!
There were some chuckles..
We were awaiting some fireworks to go off as a start signal. More moments passed. Norm's waving his pink arms.
FOR MORE FREEDOM!!
More laughter...and Norm just tells us to go:
We're off - dodging cow patties in the process!
And did i mention that we all removed our front wheels, and had to pick them up at the 250m mark, and then remount our wheels when we got to our bikes at the 500m mark?
There i am off behind the Pink Normon. Drew, on the left, lived up to his costume, and is the reigning 2008 World Single Speed Champion. I'm back in the game, there between the pink princess and cow:
The ride was short, as we immediately hit the 10 PACK set of barriers. Yes - 10 sets of barriers:
I think i was lapped a few times whilst in the barriers..
Luckily speed was picked up quickly out of the barriers as it was a bit of a downhill on the field, and a short curvy road and then the lap-point and Finish. From there, some more twists and turns, and into the wooded section, which had a loads of roots and tight twists. That spit us out on the descent over the fire trenches.
Yes - FIRE TRENCHES!!
They dug out two pits and filled them with wood, and lit it on fire, AIR VEGAN!
Not everyone jumped the trenches, like my teammate Jen:
Or ROLAND!! (Dishonoring Wendy Simms, who he's dressed up as!)
Of course, i was the only person to take a tumble, very nearly rolling into the pit itself!!
That was pretty much the end of my race there..chain was off, put it back on. I hopped back on my bike, and then it clicked what people were yelling to me "straighten your bars!". Gah. Hop off, rotate my bars back straight.
Foolishly, i'd been trying to fully bunny-hop the trenches, but turns out (i learned the next lap) all you had to do was ride over them, you ought to have enough momentum to carry you over..haha.. It doesn't help my bars are pretty low, and the lower tire pressure also threw me off, literally, as it squished a lot when i landed! I'm no aerial artist at my best...
Several people passed as i fumbled on the pits, and got going again, chasing down those i could. It mainly ended up to be dualing match between Tom and myself..i'd catch and pass him on the flats, and then he'd get by me on the climbs and barriers (you can see him in front of me in the 10packs above).
There was a short flat across a grassy field, then up a short hill, some more wooded twists, then back down and into a cornfield:
There were still stalks of corn sticking up, so it was like 'thuk thuk thuk thuk' as you rode through. That lead up to a short run-up, and into the mud. It started off with thick, boggy mud (with 'islands' of hard grass), and then onto a trail which was literally like riding on chocolate pudding. Luckily, the deep puddle that was there last year was quite a bit more shallow this year:
That spit us back out onto the cornfield, and back up to the grassy field, another short uphill in the grass to the barriers, and then around the lap-point.
On the final lap, Tom was having trouble with his saddle, which enabled me to get by and stay away.. There was another rider 50m ahead at that point, and so i gunned it! He had a big lead going into the barriers, but i was motoring through for once..helps having a little motivation!
I actually manage to get out of the barriers just as he was about to hop back on his bike - YES!! I remount, and DAMN! CHAINS OFF!! Gaaaah.. I fumble with it, and look back, and my buddy Jamie is in hot pursuit too, trying to lap me! I get back on the bike, but with the 400m or so to go, it's not really much of a concern. I ease up to make it fairly close. ;)
Thanks to Katie for all these pics! I finished 23rd (out of 33), it was only one category. Single-speed racing is not my cup of tea! I picked a pretty good gear for me (something like 34x19), it felt okay for the first half, and then a bit big in the 2nd half. It was such a rolly course that cadence was changing constantly, from 60-110rpm. I'll stick to the geared riding! Big thanks to our team sponsor Eatmore Sprouts, who gave us a good dose of healthy deliciousness to bring home. =)
All of Roland and Katie's pics are here, and Dave Silver also has an excellent gallery here. Normon and Wendy's race report is a hoot too, and be sure to check out the pics - i don't know if the one of the two OBB fairy's jumping over the firepit was coordinated, but it's a hilarious shot either way. =)
This weekend is the double-header around Victoria, with one race in Saanich (Slugget Farm) and the other in Colwood at the Juan de Fuca grounds (site of our poor velodrome.)
Keeping the training fairly tame this week. I meant to get out yesterday, but was feeling a bit under the weather (my Sunday - World Vegan Day - was uber-busy, from 11am-9:30pm), and Saturday was also a lot of time out (left at 9am, got home at 8pm), and was pretty stessed-out planning for both activities in the day leading up. I'm a little more accustomed to a slower pace. ;)
Today (looks nice out!), will head out and see what the legs feel like, might just be a 2hr EM, considering some 'Hard/Harder' intervals that Normon and Wendy suggested..that'd be 4mins @ 300w, then 2mins harder, say 350w. Prolly chill Wed, and another 2hrs EM Thu, and then race the weekend!
If anyone reading this is interested in helping out with the Velodrome Association, our AGM is on Thursday, details here.
It also turns out that i'm going to be designing the final race course for the Cross on the Rock series, on Nov 22nd out at Shawnigan Lake School, this should be interesting.....! Will be heading out on Friday to scope out the terrain and basic course.
Links & Such
A few items that might be of interest to readers:
Another Vegan Cycling & Cyclocross Blog
My friend Tanya (aka Vegan Vegabond) maintains an entertaining blog, check it out!
Pure Sweet Hell "Cyclocross Film" (Three Minute Trailer)
Very authentic trailer, check it out!
That's it for now, keep on riding!
Alcohol Stunts ATP Production
Interesting piece, i'm already aware that alcohol inhibits testosterone production (so not a great idea to drink after a workout), also turns out that it stunts ATP production, which sprinters rely on to fuel their muscles.
A Vegan Feminist Lament
A blog entry from Carol Adams (author of The Sexual Politics of Meat) - really great piece, here's a quote:
"When vegans eat with meat eaters, many of us don’t see “meat.” We see the remains of a morally abandoned being, at the center of the table, being buried into the stomachs of those around us. We are not just supposed to be quiet, we are supposed to be polite."