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Entries from March 8, 2009 - March 14, 2009

VBP Crew at University Bicycles!

The VBP crew was representin' down at University Bicycles today, out in the brilliant sunshine that is Boulder in March. Tim Shea and Mike Eubank were out manning the beautiful new VBP tent that was

DSC_0263

generously, and personally, donated to us by Dean Gentile of OMNI Promotions. It looked PRO!! Moreover, the ENTIRE staff at U Bikes was in support of the park by all wearing their VBP Shirts with pride. I was able to take some shots today to give you a little peak at the day.

The day was all about promoting the park to passers by, showing interested people the features being built, discussing timelines and handing out stickers and other promotional items to advertise the goodness coming to Boulder. All in all, it was amazing to see.

Click on the image to see my set.

Help this boy get his epic in Breck'ic

Have you seen this boy? You may recognize him from such events as the Master's National Cyclocross Championships, the instigator and proprietor of Dopers Suck or as the blogger who brought you Chocolate Waffles and 'Cross!

And now, with a propensity for popping champagne on podiums winning stars-n-bars, our Brandon za Dubba Dwight has since upgraded his habit to Dom and roaming the streets of Boulder ranting about ..."I'm bringin' the pain next season!"...this, to "....I need me one good epic to train"....that. So, like the global group of philanthropists we are, we need to intervene and get this guy an epic under his belt and build up for 'cross this season.  And there's no better way to do that than to help vote him into the...

The organizers of Breck Epic in Breckenridge, Colorado (a multi-day stage race around the same time as the Firecracker 50 National Marathon MTB championships) are doing something super interesting: They advertised for a group of writers/bloggers to come and talk about the event leading up and the community will get to vote for of them to get into the event!

So, if you could, help me help a brother and have a look at Dubba's profile here. Once you've done that, note the 'Cast Your Vote' link on the left side of his profile. Click that and navigate on over to the Survey Monkey site they've created and give a vote for Brandon. Here's the catch: You'll see on the voting for First, Second, Third. Help Dubba under-achieve by voting him for THIRD place. Sounds weird, huh? Trust me on this one. Give 'im a THIRD place vote and I think we'll see him in Breck in July.

You've done your philanthropy for today. Now get back to work!

 

Stretchy strechy

So as geekdified as it sounds, I set this calendar reminder once a week to head on out into the car hole and go and fill my tubulars up to keep a wee bit inflated during the off season. Especially those that have Stans in them and they get a little turn on the skewer to mix the stuff up a bit...lest the Stans cause the latex tubes to get all stick together whiel sittle idle.

The rack you see here is super trick for wheel storage and inexpensive to throw together. A bunch of hardware store grade hooks staggered in two roes alternating one high and one low (so the skewers don't bump). I drill those into a piece of pine then attach that piece of pine to the studs in the wall. Insta-storage.

I'm going to run a mix of toobies next year. Some Dugast, some Challenge, some clincher...whatever the day brings. I have settled on one fact though that I am in LOVE with 34's....especially on the Colorado crap we have to endure out here. 


6 more months till 'cross.

Come see New World Disorder at the Boulder Theater!

 

Full Cycle will host the St. Patrick's Party and Film Night to benefit Valmont Bike Park

All Proceeds from the event will benefit Valmont Bike Park , a new dedicated off-road cycling facility in Boulder, Colorado planned for construction in 2009.

Date/time: March 17th, Doors at 7, Movies at 8

Location: Boulder Theater

Price: $10 + service charge

Feature Movie: New World Disorder 9: Never Enough

Special Events: Mafia Racing is organizing Demos, Ripstoke will perform Trials Demo

Sponsored by: Full Cycle, Kona, Pabst Blue Ribbon

Drawings for cool gear from: Kona, Mavic, Oakley, Giro, Fox, Look, Bike Magazine, PBR

Wear green and get raffle tickets for $1; No Green and raffle tickets are $2

Paying attention....

This time of year, for me anyways, is about paying close attention to where I am at physically. I love to drink me the beers, eat well or graze all day at the home office (although my lady is a nutritionist by education so we eat so clean and lean it's nuts). And this time of year it's super easy to stay hunkered down indoors, immobile, jamming work from before sunrise to sundown. But paying attention to 'the balance' even when there are no race targets is immense for me and has to be done. So what am I up to?

  • Trail running. Lots. 3-4 days per week. I typically go between 30-45 minutes on trails with a lot of elevation gain. I tend to go hard....at least for me as a non-runner. It's good to get those punches in on the hills, jack the heart, and focus on feeling light. If you can do this, it WILL be remembered come 'cross season when you can take advantage of your running skills on long or technical run ups. 
  • Biking: Believe it or not, I try to avoid it...mainly due to my obsessive compulsive disorder for bikes. But, you can't keep me away all week, so I focus on my buds and being with them as OFTEN as possible for the shits and giggles factor. Fall will have enough 'alone time' training. Long MTB's with my boys are exactly what the doctor orders this time of year....e.g. one 4-6 hour ride on a weekend day each weekend (balancing the other day with the family) is immensely helpful for the body and spirit. Keeps the fat at bay given the time you're out there and develops this sick strength and focus thing you need...especially in the 50th minute in a cross race! During the week I'll alternate days when I'm not at the gym or running...mainly recovery rides for 1/2 to 1 hour. One day a week I'll alternate a run for a hill climb on the road bike up one of the notorious climbs around here like Flagstaff, Sunshine or Lee Hill to Deer Trail.
  • Gym. 2 days a week. Lots of leg strength and core strength. I'm usually there for ~hour and you can do TONS in that amount of time. I'll alternate sides of the leg with each visit...e.g. hamstrings and calves on one day then leg presses (quad stuff) the next. I'll do core all gym days though to try and be...at least feel...svelte.
  • Beer. Arrgh...my nemesis. I have to play games with myself and try to put multiple days in-between my sips. Else, I'll down one of those $12 4-packs pf Duvel before you can say bedankt....every time. So, moderation I guess as it's SO EASY to say hello to your friend nightly.
  • Food. As mentioned, it's always clean, but I'm trying to take on more protein and less starches and 'fillers'. In other words, stuff that's going to help me rebuild muscle. And as a guiding rule from my main man Pete Webber: "Take on as many vegetables as you can tolerate." Belee-dat.

Anyways, I was asked about the above from a bud and figured I'd parlay it into ablog post. It's not like I'm winning UCI races but the model I tend to use works with the balance of things I try to maintain in my life. Hope it helps you!

Photo: via Google.

Tubeless Tires and Cyclocross

So, I've been reading these articles in CX Mag online about the merits of tubeless tires and 'cross. I'm not sold. At least not yet. Over the last season, I had been able to get some ride time on the Hutchinson Bulldog mounted to Dura Ace wheels designed for tubeless applications. I'm a big fan of Hutchinson tires. Their tread patterns are super fast and I've had great success with them on the MTB, but cross is another animal all together. So, some observations...

  • Tubeless tires ARE NOT tubular tires. Do not confuse the two being the same.
  • Tubeless tires do not allow for the same level of suppleness that a tubular is inherently designed with vis-a-vis its materials in use on their sidewalls (cotton, silk, etc).
  • Now, per above, what does 'suppleness' mean? It's the ability for the tire to bend and allow its tread pattern to stay 'glued' to the earth while you and the bike bend into the apex of the turn you're making. Tubeless tire casings are inherently different due to the materials in use on their sidewalls. They are stiffer to support the nature of the tubeless application itself...e.g. keeping the bead tightly sealed to the rim when running 'reasonably' lower pressures. Tubular tires can achieve their bend because of two main factors: 1) the glue keeping the  center line of the tire in place and 2) the material of the casing which allows for varying levels of flexibility allowing for the bend. This ranges from cotton to silk to synthetics...with varying levels of 'bend-ability'.
  • So with the above said, Tubeless tires when run with low(er) PSIs, therefore have an incredible burping problem in 'cross. I've seen it time and time and time again in races. This is mainly due to the issues above (e.g. stiffer sidewalls + lower air to support the casing in the bead of the rim= burp) and the somewhat naiveté of the rider thinking they can get away with 'tubular like performance' and only filling with ~25 PSI. I just don't think the casings are there yet to support this....

So, these are my opinions for what they're worth. I want to see tubeless systems 'progress' as they will be infinitely easier to work with. It's my opinion though that tubeless does not equal tubular yet and riders should serioulsy consider this.

Sunshine and Dominoes 

I still don't understand it. Is this end-of-days? The weather is EPIC. More May than March with 65 degree temps and sun that gives off a crystalline blue sky. Priceless days, these. I suppose if I still raced hard in the spring I'd be out of my mind with this weather. Early, pre-work training is not too cold allowing the type of focus you need to really ramp up....e.g. being able to focus-in on how your body really feels when the efforts get put down versus not being able to feel your face and indescribable toe and finger pain given the cold that should be here right now. Anyways, dudes here will be fast this spring, methinks. I can not describe for you the volume of bike traffic on the roads. Nuts.

But even while rolling today on our 'cross ride in this brilliant sun.....with Dan the Man, Von and Brett....my mind is wandering. It's been wandering. It's been utterly focused on 'what now?' and 'what next'. I've spoke about flicking dominoes....and in digesting the domino-flicking concept here on the blog, It's been an amazing exercise to truly ideate on how I can ensure my hands are firmly on my life's control stick. Keeping level with the horizon. Ensuring that my family and I are avoiding obfuscated hillsides....those that could take us away from our beloved Boulder.The indescribably thick conservatism in my decision making throughout my life has in one sense kept me as a single dude....and now my family...safe and on a great trajectory. But 'what if?'. What if just a smattering of risk was employed? What if I we decided to just...

Something in this life seems to be materializing and a few exciting rivers have suddenly exposed themselves....showing their unbelievable features, their twists, turns and eddies all at once. Because of a small amount of risk taken to even flick that very first domino, breaking all my traditional risk-mitigation synapses I was born with, these deeply shaded curtains get pulled back and I get to see these rivers in all of their entirety. I am given this opportunity to evaluate their risks, their rewards...their individual rides. It's pretty unique. 

I'm not sure where this is going. It's either going to be magical or Wonka.

Flick your own dominoes.