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Entries from February 10, 2008 - February 16, 2008

Cyclocross training and the art of mad dog avoidance

I'm lucky. I mean, REALLY lucky. I count my blessings every day. Beautiful family, thankfully good health. Trust me, I know the blessings when they are in front of me.

Another huge blessing is being able to be competitive in the sport I love and I race with some of the best guys in the country, weekend in and weekend out. But to do this, takes a lot of sacrifice and dedication. So, of course when the time comes each year, I get on it and watch the diet, train in the wee early morning hours to ensure the balance with fam and work, etc.

But this element, called "work" often injects some fairly sophisticated barriers to surmount (puns semi-intended) in order to be as on top of my game as I can. Heavy stress, people management, business growth, and of course 100K mileage years on United are all part of the drill managing a world wide product management organization and product portfolio.

On the travel tip, I get to see some crazy places around the globe and meet super passionate software geeks like me. But then I get exposed to things like the following IM I had this AM with my lab director in Romania. Put this into context on how I need to try and keep some fitness while on the road...especially in the late summer as I am trying to ramp it up (lots to do with keeping my mind sane, less the body at this time of year):
So many obstacles. So little time. So next time you see me out there smile and it will surely mean the dogs didn't get me.


At the expense of sounding like a weenie/show off, I've always been a good wheelie-er. I guess it's my BMX stuff that's never left me. But Chance shows some absurdity here on this vid...

Title no. 8

What did you do today to elevate your heart rate folks? I mean besides throttle your computer? Whatever you, me, all of us with the taken-for-granted ability to wiggle all of our appendages are doing by staring at our PowerTaps and putting in our miles to keep fit and reach our goals this season pales in comparison to the depth Chris digs day in and day out to get it done. My boy Klebl, the same kid who is responsible for getting me on a mountain bike in 92 and falling back in love with two wheels (Damn you Klebl. Damn you. I could be a happy fat drunk Irishman at this point), won his 8th national cross country ski title amongst throwing down in Europe. Read his blog here and next time you throw your leg over your carbon fiber, smile and get it done. Chris is.

Valmont 'Cross Park - On the FAST track!

The system works! I do not know what else to say. Over the course of a year or so, the Parks and Recreation board and City Council members of Boulder have listened and reacted to the needs of in our case 'crossers in prioritize a facility in Boulder designed to allow for us to get our knobby tired game on. I've posted on this project in the past, but it is amazing to see this project get wings. Bobby and Pete have been using an incredibly soft-style evangelism with the City that has expressed the needs of mountain bikers, 'crossers and off road enthusiasts in a manner that wasn't condemning 'the System' and shaming it into the realization we have no facilities, but rather enrolling them with the true need and a participatory manner. It worked! The project is now top priority and being examined for implementation as early as next year. That is unbelievable considering I was prepping myself for the fact that *if* the project got approved, it likely would be something my children would benefit from when they come of 'crossing age.

The conceptual image of the park above is still in major flux but as you can see, so much is being accommodated. Awesome. Smooth trails, cross specific trails, technical single name it! I love the fact that a staircase feature was injected into the plan for cross specifc needs. Imagine if you will a set of stairs with a bunch of local sponsor labels on it. Look at the image to the right and replace Duvel with New Belgium and inject RockyMounts, Boulder Cycle Sport, VeloNews and so on. Rad. A set of barriers along the cross course would also be great. Perhaps something that could be moved in terms of location.

In other news, there may be some surprises this year with respect to some yummy UCI courses here in Boulder. New courses that is. Stay tuned....

'Cross on.

Bubbling Irreversibility

No, irreversibility is not a word. It just feels like the right word. At this moment. Especially as it relates to the bubbling thoughts that have woven though my mind lately. When the brain starts firing again through paths of synapses that carry the good thoughts, not the bad ones, it is so immediately recognizable. It starts to ensure the trend towards what you want has its first domino flicked; irreversibly. What makes that happen? Some trees, some fat tires, some decent weather for sure. But an element is the other words the right combination of people that were meant to be surrounding you on days when you need it. And it was a varsity team collection of good doers, non-naysayers, tail-waggers, joy-grabbers.

A crew of the kind, fit-tire appreciating folks assembled at Hall Ranch to get our 7,000 feet of frolics on. Conditions were a 6 out of 10 in terms of staying 'on trail' due to remaining high altitude snow and mud but the grins ensured mud met teeth and that is the methadone for the brain I speak of....often.

On the ride, one gear again, without fail brought smiles. It is so ridiculous how a single speed can make you feel. I don't know what to say. It's perfect. The rhythm you get into of swaying that bike and it's near silence in doing so is sort of like the perfectly thin foam on a nitrous poured beer sitting on top of the brown gold. It's what you want, and the mustache it leaves on your lip often induces a smile. It is simply not like riding a bike with gears. You have to not fight the bike but rather you join it. I'm not trying to sound all spiritually symbiotic here, but it is the truth. You make the 1 x 1 have rhythm and it helps you. Propels you. Gears make you think about suffering, and...well they just make you think. All the while I'm looking for the perfect solution to find 'Channel Zero' for my brain. Synaptic snow. And, yeah, while you need gears some times, you pick the places ad times where the 1 x 1 can bake the brain into peace.

Peace. Yes. With people who felt the same today.

Digital Celluloid....