Tag road biking

Ride of Silence

Tonight at 7pm, thousands of cyclists rode in silence at more than 300 events in 22 countries worldwide, to honor those that have been injured or killed while riding on public roadways. We had a great turnout in Chattanooga, both on bikes and those that came outside their home/business to show their respect on the sidewalks.

We were, however, one person short. David, you were in our hearts today.

anti-dooring campaign

thankfully i haven’t been “doored” but have had some close calls. Dooring is when a person in a car opens a car door into or in front of a cyclist. I guess it might be more of a problem in chicago, where they actually have an awareness campaign going on. i ran across this nice poster recently when i was browsing for design inspiration…

this post has been sitting in my blogger “almost ready to post” file for awhile, but was having problems getting the photo to upload. my friend joel out in SF got doored today. thankfully he was ok, but thought i should go ahead and get this up!

so riders, don’t get too close to parked cars.
and drivers, look back before you open your door!

bug season

unfortunately, it’s still gnat season in the south. (does it ever end?)

Moronic Bicyclists In Clown Suits


some interesting points (there are a few cyclists out there that don’t follow the rules of the road that really ruin it for the rest of us), but it is sad to see the thoughts of some motorists out there.

cycling + design

being a designer by day (and some nights), i love it when i see great design within the world of cycling, running, etc. (hopefully one day i’ll be able to concentrate more on event marketing, catalog design, and other promo-type stuff…)

here are some awesome illustrations from the Montreal Bike Fest that just happened. i think a future trip to this is in order, especially since i have relatives there!

cycling + music

ah frazz, such a wise one. it’s a bit of a controversial topic in the cycling world though. yes, it’s nice to have some tunes to keep you company on long solo rides, or during the nth hour of an endurance race. but at what cost? on the road, it’s listening for cars; on the trail, it’s listening for other riders & hikers. i usually only wear my shuffle running (but even not so much since the emerson murder).
somewhat unrelated is the awful accident 2 weekends ago that left a georgia cyclist in bad shape. ryan was prepping for the roswell criterium, when a truck with a landscaping trailer hit him. he’s undergoing surgery today at the shepherd center to hopefully alleviate the paralysis. thoughts & prayers are with him.

King of the Mtns Challenge

No, I’m not doing this (I have a different birthday ride in mind), but I thought it was worth posting the elevation profile. Gosh, I could eat a lot of cake after this….

Last year the eventual winner went back up Roberts Mill, to make it 11 climbs. He’s really not quite right ;)  (and makes some great bikes!)

Cohutta 65

one of the key races i was using as a benchmark for leadville was the cohutta 65. (once upon a time i was thinking i would do the 100 mile option, but that 6 wk break off my feet earlier this year had me rethink that plan…)  

while not the full monty, the 65, just shy of 11k of elevation gain, was still going to be a respectable day. the rain overnight and during the first hour of the race added another twist to the day. luckily it wasn’t that cold (although there was a bit of snow here on monday!)
we started at the ocoee whitewater center at 7:15am with a light drizzle. after a quick 3 miles down hwy 64 (a nice climb to break up the field of 160+ riders in this distance), we turned into the brush creek singletrack trails. i actually haven’t ridden this section before and i’d imagine it would be quite nice and flowy if it wasn’t for the thick, slick mud everywhere. after some speedier guys passed me, i settled into a nice pace, yo-yo’ing with a few guys for the next 2 hrs. all was going well until i wiped out hard on a bridge. we had lots of short wooden bridges going over creeks & such and i really did try to take them easy; i’m not exactly sure what happened here, but next thing i know i lay my bike out and we’re sliding across the bridge… i see a pole and think “this will not be good if my body slams into this”. luckily my bike hit it first – but that just meant i hit my bike… groin into the handlebars and stem. yeowsers. i layed there a minute taking some deep breaths (people making sure i was ok), but when i saw a girl pass, i was back on my feet.  time to go!
i was a bit slow for a bit, trying to get my balance again. things hurt for sure. i was a bit slower than anticipated getting back to the WWC; now time for some tanasi trail action… by the time i was up bear paw, i was able to pass the girls that had passed me when i was down. once i hit the forest service roads, i was back in my element. it did seem to go on forever – funny how things didn’t look that familiar even though i’ve ridden here several times this year. i was alone for a long time here, just doing my thing and riding hard. 2 voices were constantly in my head – matt’s voice saying “attack the hills” and jeramie saying (in response to me wondering how he thought i’d do) “well, depends on what cathi shows up”.  early on it was “cathi that crashed hard and was in pain”. but now it was “cathi that was on a mission”. i wasn’t there to just ride; i wanted to race.
finally the turn from 221 to 62 (the “big frog loop”) came, along with the aid station with our drop bags and the smiling & energetic ken radley (always good to see a familiar face on a grueling course!) i actually didn’t need anything in my bag – i had been filling up with heed at some earlier stops and did so again here (i actually like the light taste of the stuff – i do get tired of the gatorade/powerade sweetness, which was what i had stashed…). some quick lube on the chain and i was off again – i has seen a pink jersey when i pulled in and really wanted to reel in that potential girl. which i did soon enough – along with 2 others on this section. that was energizing! i hooked up with a few guys that had a solid pace and good conversations for a bit. i suck at remembering names sometimes… there was the singlespeeder from atl that knew some of the addictive crew… and a bike zoo guy from knox with cool checkered arm warmers… 
once back on 221, i just kept on… my legs were feeling fabulous, although the shoulder/neck pain i get sometimes was now setting in  - at least that made me forget about my pelvis. the big neverending climb came and went without problem – with the leaders of the 100 mile passing me here – damn they looked fresh! 
finally the last aid station before the final singletrack section. hooray! they didn’t have any heed, so i just kept the 1 full bottle i had, figuring it would be enough for the last 12 miles or so. about 10 minutes in, i started hearing some noise from my bike… not the hiss of flat tires (like last weekend), but something else. then without warning, chain suck. aaah, so that is the sound of a bone dry chain that doesn’t want to move. what sucked even more was the fact i didn’t have any lube on me. every 5-10 minutes my bike would seize. sometimes i could get through it, but half the time i was going up a hill or over some rocks/roots, so it royally f’d me up. for once i was totally thankful for every descent i could find – if i didn’t pedal, i didn’t have problems. i passed lots of people sidelined with mechanicals (including a friend with a snapped derailleur), but no one with lube. so basically this last section (which initially i was worried about, not knowing how tired i’d be going through it, then was excited about because i was feeling great), ended up sucking royally, taking at least 30 min longer than it should have. 
thunder rock express could not come soon enough. i got through that easily and was thankful for the fsr at the end – that signalled about a mile of road to the finish. liz & evan were right there waiting for me – i tried to look fast for him :)  (erick was with ethan, who was napping).
it was definitely cool to have my little nephews up from orlando so they could see aunt cathi ride bikes (inspire them young!) after some wrinkles getting results posted, i ended up 5th in the women’s 65, with a time of 7:32:06. (this would have been 56 out of 100 total riders in this distance – always like to see how i compare to the guys ;). while i’m definitely happy with this, 4th place was only 32 min ahead, so it could have been an interesting finish without the mechanicals.

me + my # 1 fan evan

desperate for drink

ahhh, hydrated & happy (i swear this isn’t a coke commercial)

ken helping me out with a post-race s

So now… the next day… 
I am definitely happy with my race – my body felt great (except for the crash of course) and I was happy with how my legs responded. my nutrition and hydration was on. what to change? well, carry lube!! other than that, just continue on with matt’s plans, whatever they may be. (it’s working so far!) i did see an old friend, zeke, at the race and i hope to catch some long rides and leadville knowledge from him in the future. i am a bit sore – that great post-long-workout soreness where you know you did something good… but then my left knee that i landed on is aching good (the cuts aren’t too bad), along with my neck (and not the part that was sore during the race – maybe i hit that when i fell too?? hmmm)

I’ll be interested to see how this experience relates to Leadville. I’ll have 4.5 more hrs to tackle 35 more miles and 3000’ more elevation gain. Altitude will be the determining factor I think, as my fitness track seems to be right on.

i should be in bed right now… but….

we all know i have problems going to bed at decent hours. so a quick update on this weekend…

the Georgia Cup is a great series of road cycling races throughout georgia (duh). well this weekend it comes to the great atlanta suburb of chattaboogie. so, why not indulge…. matt worked it into my training so i’ll be out there hitting it during saturday’s time trial (at 8:09.30 a.m.!) and crit (2:00), then on sunday during the road race (another early one – 8:45am). this is more of a “c” race, so while i’ll try as hard as i can, i’m definitely not aiming to do too stellar (that will come at next weekend’s cohutta race!)
there will be lots of vixens out there, so we’ll have a ton of fun. i’m especially looking forward to the men’s pro/am crit tomorrow night downtown. some of the teams participating in the upcoming tour de georgia will be using it as a bit of a warm up. report + pics to come! meanwhile, just wish me luck in the crit. after last years, i swore i’d never do one again…..  

sunday training days

i haven’t kept up with posting things lately but that doesn’t mean i’m sitting back being lazy – on top of lots of training, work has been super busy too. i’ll write more about this past weekend’s duathlon soon, but here’s a quick visual recap of the previous two weekends…

shannon, jeramie and i hit the cherohala skyway for some road bike action. after fueling up with momma’s pancake breakfast, we drove over to tellico plains and parked near the ranger station at the base of the skyway. our plan was to ride up, over, and down to snowbird for a snack, then ride back up, over, and down. jeramie’s modest estimate was 5-5.5hrs. well once we got to the top we realized it was going to be closer to 6.5-7hrs… daylight would have been tight and the skyway isn’t a place to be caught at dusk. plus i don’t think we’d have brought enough clothing for the temps at the top an hour or two later. (and not sure any of us had the legs for 10,000′+ feet of gain today!)

totals: 4.5hrs, 57 miles, 6625′ elevation gain (started around 680′, topped out at 5390′ at Santeelah Gap)

the sunday before (that would be the weekend of the CPZ race i did not do), a group of us headed over to the ocoee for a tour of the big frog 65 race route. sunday’s weather was great – clear skies, but still chilly; a good bit of snow still on the ground. didn’t take too many pics – i had to work hard to keep up with the seasoned riders i was with. that is until my front brakes totally failed. a piston in the lever fell out; no trailside fix for that. luckily we were only 5 or 6 miles from the end, so i took it easy/safe. (thankfully i noticed this problem before a big downhill!)

totals: 4hrs20min, 38 miles, about 4000′ elevation gain

shannon, me, micah, jeramie, jamie

my ghetto feet warmers
(forgot my booties so i was at the mercy of jeramie’s leftovers. 
micah called them “grover feet”. hey, they did the trick…)