Thursday, January 31, 2013

2012 Riding Stats -- Disappointing


  1. (of a person) Sad or displeased because someone or something has failed to fulfill one's hopes or expectations.
  2. (of hopes or expectations) Prevented from being realized.
  3. S.O.B.'s' riding stats for the year 2012
Synonyms: Frustrated

Dang, I got so caught up in loosing weight and hittin' tough rides that I completely forgot to update stats for 2012. All in all I had a pretty disappointing year in terms of riding and mileage. I totaled 1592 miles on the Single Speed (98% on the Niner One9) and 818 on the road (nearly evenly split between the SS roadie and the new geared Ti Cross) for a grand total of ~2400 miles. For reference, in 2011 I rode a total of 4097 miles, with nearly 3k of that on the mtb. But, selling a house, moving across country and being a stay at home dad put a dent in things this year. Also, I had no fancy gps or smart phone until recently, so no elevation stats, but I can tell you that I have already ridden more elevation in the last month ~30k than I did in any 3 months in NC.
The highs for 2012- Definitely placing 2nd in the Burn 24 as a duo with Jeff D, finishing another PMBAR with Jay L & the Farwell Ride.
The low for 2012...hmmm, could be the January mtb marathon, could be the Race at the Reactor (Harris Lake) where I placed 5th in SS but would have been 2nd in 40+...but that is all good. The real low was saying good-bye to the people I first started riding with and then leaving the place where it all started as we left NC for the Sierra Foothills in CA. At least I went from one mtb hot-bed to another.  Now (lifting a Coor's Lite) here's to a solid year of riding in 2013.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Sweetwater-South Fork-Cronin Ranch-Olmstead-Salmon Falls. Tough Ride!

My legs are beat! ~48 miles ~6300' climbing...and the freeze-thaw made this one tough mudder!
Here are some of the highlights:
1. I have never ridden three of the trails I link together (Sweetwater, Cronin or Olmstead) and have only been on one of the roads used to link them (Pedro Hill) so this truly was an adventure.
2. I started at Sweetwater Trail, but was worried about a break in with my car parked alone (and a scary looking guy in a van going by), but a few cars were at Salmon falls so I rode back to the car and drove it back to Salmon Falls to park. Doh! I forgot to turn off Strava so I am now KOM on the "Zee Estates Climb" at 34.8 mph (a request has been submitted to remove).
3. I planned an out and back but with the trails getting worse and worse as I got into Cronin Ranch I knew some of the mud that was frozen would be a thawed mess and the areas already a mess were not getting any better. I decided to take Rattle Snake Bar to Salmon Falls after Olmstead Loop.
4. Olmstead Loop was pretty messy in spots...probably should not have been out there but tried to take as much care as possible.
5. The road climbing was a monster! The trip up Pedro Hill was not so bad, but then add the Oak View up to Olmstead (Pilot Hill Estates) was a bear for the average Joe (or average James).
Then the climbs on Rattlesnake Bar are monsters (especially when you are already 30+ miles in). I basically went the easier direction, and some of those hills still seemed like they were not going to end. Still, no way I am stopping on pavement, but it was tough.
6. Ran out of water going past the cow pasture on Salmon biggie. I just stopped and took a drink from a cow's nip. O.k., not really, it was just maybe 4 or so miles left, but if I was desperate, then there would have been one lucky cow.
All in all a good ride. I was in survival mode toward the end but good Karma was with me. As I came to my car, I ran into a couple guys (Brooks and David) who had recently finished their ride and they offered me a brew (my first ever Lagunitas). Damn, that beer tasted good!
One other quick note: Having a light, rigid bike was such a plus on a ride like this. Other than fat tires with ~20psi, I was basically a cross bike. :)
Good Times!

See the ride in the right column or click here:

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Tough Auburn Trails Ride--Take That Strava!

So, as I mentioned earlier, Strava has screwed me. I did a tough ride that ended up with over 4900'. Thought, wow, that close to 5000', next ride I will climb more to get over the hump.  So the next ride I added an extra 3 miles (1.5 of climbing) to guarantee me the extra elevation needed, and what does Strava say? ~4700'!?!  Now I am pissed but motivated.  I will see 5000+ feet of climbing on my stupid Android Strava App as sure as I am a S.O.B single-speeder!!!


42+ Miles and ~6600' of climbing...funny, I thought I might be closer to 5500'... but there was a lot more elevation gain on the Quarry trail than I had thought...or maybe the app felt bad for shorting me last time, so it overcompensated on this one. Either way, I'll take it!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Juicing, Weight Loss and Mountain biking.

In order to track my weight-loss, or if you just happen to have a foot/sock fetish (you freak!), check out the visual evidence below.
When I got the idea to start juicing, I was probably 188-190lbs.  I recall being 187+ after Thanksgiving. Starting to get disgusted with myself, I stayed away from the scale after that (as to not get too depressed) and tried to be good between Thanksgiving and Christmas. The end result was 186.2 on December 27th, the day I started using the Juicer.

Just over a week of juicing, and I dropped 9lbs.  I knew from experience the first 7 or so would come off easy...I also know that they will tend to come off a bit slower at this point.

 Two weeks of juicing and I am down nearly 11lbs!

My weight this morning (Jan. 12)...the day after a big ride, and then a big meal (Portabella Mushroom Sandwich and large salad w/goat-cheese vinaigrette)...feeling pretty damn good!

 Just for fun, my weight after a tough 30+ mile ride with ~5,000 ft of climbing after juicing in the a.m. then surviving the ride on a bottle of Infinite and a bottle of lemon water. The pic above is more indicative of my true weight the day after actually eating something.

Loosing fat/weight is becoming addictive.  Thanks to life getting in the way, I had not been able to ride for over a week, so I actually have hit the trainer and even worked out to an old Tae-bo video just to keep the ball rolling.  Not planning on stopping until I get to the low 160's, and hopefully by that time I will have established some new habits to make keeping the weight off (eating/exercising) part of my normal lifestyle routine...and naturally, I hope a byproduct of this is that I become a mountain-biking, hill-climbing BEAST! :-)
Stay tuned.

Strava Schmava!

So I did a big ride a couple weeks ago.  Strava calculates it as 28.9 miles (my odometer showed 30.5) and 4,952 feet of climbing. So, I decided to repeat that ride, but start at a higher elevation and ride further to ensure getting over 5000 ft. of climbing.  At the end of the ride my odometer showed over 32 miles, but Strava had me at 30.3.  Also, in spite of adding an extra climb, Strava gave me 4,788???  I know the GPS stuff loses a bit of distance on tight single-track, but to drop nearly 200ft of elevation after riding more elevation was kinda weird.  Wonder if Strava on a Garmin would be more accurate than my Android app, or if this is an issue regardless of app/device. FWIW weather was sunny the first ride, partly cloudy for the 2nd.  Still, I enjoy having some stats to compare my own rides...don't really care about 'cyber racing' anyone else.