26 December 2008

Resolution

I am jumping the gun on my New Years resolution, which is to not be a loser of a blogger. Here's my first post to breathe some life back into my blog.

While traveling to Utah for Christmas we stopped in Southern Idaho for some backwoods skiing. The snow was great, Lander had fun, and I am pretty certain we were the ONLY tele skiers in the resort. Fun times!
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14 September 2008

Future Trackie?

The title is true. I took Lander down to the velodrome with me yesterday for my track workout. We took his bike since he had been bugging me for weeks to take him down there to ride. Once I let him ride around the apron and get up on the track on the straight aways, I couldn't get him off. I had to threaten to take away Lego's to get him off his bike.
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02 September 2008

First Day of School


It's the most wonderful day of the year!

12 August 2008

Complaint

Dear God,

I am writing in regards to a particular issue I am having with my right knee and would like to see if we can resolve it and get it fixed. I feel that the knee, as wonderful as it might be, has some flaws. I mean honestly, I am relatively young and have had numerous knee issues and surgeries. It just seems that with a newer version some improvements could be made that would prevent a) the cartilage spur that showed up while I was playing volleyball in high school, b) the evulsion fracture that happened while tele skiing 3 years ago (it wasn't THAT bad of a crash) and c) recently, whatever I managed to do to my knee last Saturday at the track. Seriously, I was just riding along and now it hurts and is swollen and can't ride my bike. Please take these things into consideration for any future developments you are creating. If you find that I would be a candidate for a "new and improved" version I will be here patiently waiting for a miracle to occur. Thank you for your time, or eternity, or whatever.

Yours Truly,
Jeanie


Dear Jeanie,

Thank you for your letter. I am truly sorry about the issues that you are having with your knee. I regret to inform you that at this time I cannot fulfill your request for a new knee for the following reasons:

1. Bike Racing-I know it's "low impact" but...
2.
Telemark skiing-Your knees were not made to do that.
3. Adventure Racing-NEXT!
4. Running-You are lucky you can still walk.
5. You are clumsy-Self-explanatory/you should never have played volleyball, basketball, or anything that requires coordination.

Under NORMAL conditions (meaning normal people) these types of requests can usually be met. Due to the destructive nature of your activities it has been determined that all warranties are deemed null and void. We sincerely hope that by a combination of better judgement, miracle surgeries that will hopefully be developed and ibuprofen you can continue to do the not so normal things you do. Thank you for your inquiry. I hope to hear from you soon.

Love,
God



CRAP!!!!

06 August 2008

Let the games begin...

Evidently now if an athlete wears a face mask in Beijing you are offending the Olympic organizers and assumed to be making some sort of ridiculous political/environmental statement. I am sorry, your last ditch effort in environmental countermeasures are probably not going to keep most of the athletes from coming home with some serious respiratory illness. Kudos to the athletes for trying to protect themselves.

30 July 2008

My Hubby ROCKS!

Wow, three posts in one day. That is a record for me. I just got back from the track and had to post this. I finally got Bryan to take the track class and he had a great time. I hope to have him racing out there soon. Here's the proof:



Lander wanting another podium shot (with his mom's bike). Could this be a sign of things to come?

I suck at taking videos, but this one of Bryan riding high on the track doesn't suck too bad.


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Seriously, So Funny!

If you are not LDS and have never lived in Utah or more specifically Utah County (aka Happy Valley) then you probably won't get this, or even think it is funny. This has got to be the greatest blog known to man, mainly because it makes fun of all the girls that used to make me gag on a daily basis when I was at BYU. To make it worse, my friend Ryun would bring girls that would eventually turn into this on our bike trips to Moab. You can probably guess what I was thinking when we would stop on the edge of a 1,000 foot cliff to enjoy the view. I am a terrible, horrible person. On with the humor, check it. To really enjoy it, you need to go back and start with the first post. I laughed so hard I cried.

Ricco Suave

What a dork! Yeah, that was a huge suprise. NEXT!

22 July 2008

Utah-A Photoessay

We went to Utah the day after Six Day ended to spend time with the fam-damily on July 4th. Yes, I realize it's the end of July and I am just now posting this, but I have had some major issues since we got back which is what my next post is about. Until I bore you with my problems, enjoy some photos from our trip.

Stormy bugging Taffy

Stormy worn out after bugging Taffy

Stormy discovers the pool

Taffy wishing Stormy would GO AWAY!

On a ride in my old training grounds

Lander swimming with Bailey

View from the Squaw Peak climb

Still climbing, more views

Still climbing, view of Provo from the canyon

Lander blowing bubbles for Lucy

A very pooped puppy!

Stormy's odd sleeping position in his crate

Me on the MTB in American Fork canyon

Bryan on the MTB

Me wondering why I am doing a ride with a 12 mile climb

This is why, the scenery

The top of the Alpine Loop


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Die, bubbles die. Stormy having fun with bubbles


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Stormy figures out how to swim

28 June 2008

Six Day: Day Six-Hotness and the Laziest Bike Racer EVER!

So today was hot, hot. My warm-up consisted of airing up my tires, which immediately fatigued my upper body and left me drenched with sweat, and I was in the shade. Good enough for the last day of Six Day. I did ride a couple of circles on the track. I was curious to find out if the heat actually decreased the traction speed required to stay upright through the turns. In my brain baked state it made sense that heat makes tires stickier. I just needed something lame and stupid to obsess over to avoid thinking about how hot it was. I never did test the theory for fear I would be wrong. I was rocking my Paola Pezzo shiny silver Castelli shorts today and I didn't want to do them in.

Today I was probably the laziest bike racer ever. Our first race was my super favorite, the Point a Lap, where you get to work really hard to probably NOT win a point if a really good sprinter is behind you. Basically, I just followed wheels with some girls and ended up off the front in a small group. The one time I actually ended up in the lead of our group I thought I might actually get a point, Jen F. came up next to me and was obviously going to make me work for it. I think I actually started to pedal slower, I really didn't care. Seriously, was this even a race for me? I think not, kind of pathetic. I just wanted to get it over with. Next!

My second super favorite race, the Progressive Points. Lap 1=1 point, Lap 2=2 points and so on until the race is over at 10 laps and 10 points. My only strategy against good sprinters in this race is to get off the front and stay there. Well, that was not going to happen. I went with Fiona when she attacked on lap 1 and I got 2 meager points without having to work too hard. The field seemed to split and I just kind of zoned out for about 4 laps until Jen F. took off and won laps 7,8 and 9. We then worked to get he back and on the last lap my super teammate Andrea launched a huge flyer and caught Jen before turn 4. She won the lap and 10 points for us. I love Andrea, thanks for making my life easy.

The Madison. Wow it was hot and the thought of doing a 20 minute Madison was excruciating. We had a good start and good exchanges. I somehow lucked out and ended up being in for all the sprints, when we get better we can plan on rotating the sprints between us. The first sprint I came in 3rd, won the second sprint and got 2nd in the third sprint. It was a good race, I really did think I was going to die about half way through. Kudos to Darien who rode her teams Madison ironwoman style (by herself). You are my hero. Here's a cool video David Hart took of our Madison.


video

Results? The big suprise for us was that we won the daily points placing. During the Six Day you can place according to your daily points and laps (kind of like a stage win in a stage race) those points and laps all go into the tally for the overall win (kind of like the GC). Up until today Miranda and Jen had creamed us in points on a daily basis, so we were always in 2nd or 3rd for the daily points. We were so elated when we found out we had won for the day. We also kept our 2nd place overall. Here's our podium shots courtesy of David.

On the podium in 1st for the day

Congrats to everyone. If you look closely you can see the big loopy bows we wore in our hair. For the past three days we kept adding ribbons, so they were pretty obnoxious by today.

Final podium shot. Thanks to all the ladies who came out to make it a great week of racing. See you next year!

Six Day: Day Five-Are we done yet?

As I was warming up tonight (it was more being near the bike in the heat than an actual warm up) I was trying to relate Six Day to other types of racing I have done. It's kind of like stage racing only it's more violent. Yes, violent is a good word. There is no easy pace in any of the Six Day races that you do. Once you start racing, you are on the gas all the time. It hurts. Tonight it hurt really bad. 20 lap points race, nothing great. We tried to get as many points as possible. Nothing stayed off the front so that made it hard. Next was a Miss and Out. I had a sweet spot at the front setting pace with Jen T.. With 5 girls left, I was tired and literally just sat up to get pulled. I was tired, the legs hurt and I wanted to save something for the Madison since doing poorly could hurt us right now if the right teams were able to gain laps on us.

The 20 minute Madison was a suffer fest. We had good exchanges and good positioning. I was in for back to back sprints and let Jen. T get away from me. I just could not close a gap that I know I could close yesterday. I am getting tired. We finished 2nd in the Madison but were bummed because they counted us as a lap down from Jen and Miranda even though they never lapped us. I guess they had lapped everyone else in the field when the race ended so we were counted in that group as well. Oh well, still in 2nd overall and only ONE MORE DAY!

26 June 2008

Six Day: Day Four-Ouch

Tonight hurt. All the races were short because they had some regular Thursday night racing fields. The racing was fast and it gave the good sprinters in our group a chance to put the hurt on. Andrea had her A game on so I was super happy. First up was a 9 lap Scratch race. Andrea and I attacked and countered and I set some pace at the front coming into the final few laps. Andrea launched a huge attack from the back that no one could catch. Jen F. got close, but in the end my awesome teammate took the win. We also had a 15 lap points race, does that even count? Andrea and I did well, just taking points in every sprint and not worrying about it too much. Yeah, it would be nice to go out there and win every sprint, but at some point you have to realize what is important and what is not. At this point in the race it's all going to come down to the Madison. We could really hurt ourselves if we blow up in the mass start races and then start losing laps in the Madison. We are not going to gain laps on Jen and Miranda so we need to keep the cushion we have for 2nd place. All part of the Six Day strategy I guess.

The Madison went okay, it was only 10 minutes of sheer torture. I wanted to die. We came in 3rd and stayed on lap so we still have our 2nd place overall. Yeah, off to bed.

25 June 2008

Six Day: Day Three-The Big Comeback

Still feeling strong and like my legs have some kick. Tonight suited Andrea and I very well. We had a 25 lap points race and 20 lap Tempo race. As tired as we were, the longer races are better for us. We were nervous knowing that we had laps to make up and not entirely sure how to execute in order to make that happen. In the end, we had nothing to worry about.

In the points race there was a group that got off the front at the first sprint: Andrea, Jen F., Jen T. and Miranda. We needed laps and Andrea was in a prime location to gain a lap which would put us on even laps with 2nd place and in the lead since we had more points. I was in a chase group with Anita and Darien. I didn't chase to allow the leaders to hopefully gain a lap. Anita and Darien worked hard and brought us within 1/2 lap of the leaders that were now lapping the field. At this point I realized, in my hypoxic and tired state, that if I lapped the field also we would gain two laps and then be one lap ahead of 3rd place, which would pretty much secure our podium spot. So after my major "Ah-Ha" moment I attacked Darien and Anita and lapped the field and caught the leaders. We duked it out for the rest of the sprints but I wasn't too concerned knowing that we had gained 2nd place overall. It's amazing what kind of math you learn to do in your head while you are racing at balls-to-the-wall speed.

The Point a Lap (Tempo) race went okay. I hate that race, you have to work so hard for one friggin' point. I was in a good spot after the neutral lap and got off the front with Jen F. and Darien and we paced and shared the points as we pulled through. That changed when Miranda and Jen T. caught us and it was every woman for herself. My legs felt like absolute crap at this point so with a few laps to go I quit contesting sprints and just sat in to save some for the Madison.

The Madison went well, we were able to stay on lap with Jen and Miranda and had some solid exchanges. We were 2nd in the Madison so that made us super happy. We are getting smoother and our timing is better. Whew, only 3 more days.

24 June 2008

Six Day: Day Two-The Comeback

Racing smart was the game plan for tonight. We were ahead of the 2nd and 3rd place teams in points, just two laps down. Main goal, try to get back some laps and some points and creep our way back into the top 3.

Andrea and I raced like rockstars tonight. We worked together so well and ended up leading in points in the omnium races giving us the lead going into the Madison. The 20 minute Madison went really well for us. We ended up lapping the 3rd place team and everyone was lapped by Jen and Miranda (they are so stinking strong). We got 2nd in the Madison and are now sitting in 3rd place overall. This was a huge boost for us after such a bad night on Monday. We were stoked at the end of the night. We are still a lap down from the 2nd place team, but we have big plans for tomorrow.

23 June 2008

Six Day:Day One-The Rough Start

Six Day is here. This year we have a separate women's field with 7 teams, totally awesome. The first all-women's Six Day was held January 6, 1896 in Madison Square Garden (where Madison racing was born) and there was only one race in 1909 that had a separate field for women. I am hoping that we are starting something here.

So yes, tonight was a rough start for Andrea and I. We hadn't practiced exchanges a whole lot because Andrea had pulled a intercostal muscle between her ribs and trying to do exchanges put her in a lot of pain. Tonight we did the 3k Madison pursuit. We did not have good exchanges at all, but managed to come in 2nd which was good since we got points for placings in the pursuit. Next we did a 15 minute Madison and that went really bad. We missed our first exchange which resulted in us getting gapped off of the Jen/Miranda and Emily/Anita teams. We finally got in some sort of a rhythm, but we ended up two laps down and in 4th place overall. We both feel kind of demoralized but know that it's a long week of racing and with some smart racing we can turn things around.

22 June 2008

San Jose AVC

The next 9 days of my life will include 8 days of track racing. I am pretty certain that by the time I am done I will be sick of the track bike and tired of going around in circles to the left.

AVC was a good race for me. It was the first big track race I have been too and I was really nervous when we got there. It didn't help that San Jose was having a fluke heat wave and when we got to the track on Friday night the thermometer in Heather's car registered 108, just peachy. The Hellyer Park Velodrome is like a freeway compared to Alpenrose. You can move around easily and there is no minimum traction speed in the turns. This is the track I will race on at Master's Nationals so it was a good reconnaissance trip for me.

Friday night we raced a Keirin and a Points Race. I knew I would need a bigger gear on my bike, but I didn't anticipate how big. I was way undergeared in the Keirin. I was riding an 88" gear and I should have been on a 92". Hmm, lesson #1 learned. The best part of the Keirin was watching Jen Featheringill win and Andrea Fisk, my Six Day partner, take 8th. Needing a 50 tooth chainring to get a 90" gear, I lucked out and found Darryl from the Guiness team that had a brand new one to sell me. Awesome. The 90" gear for the Points Race was a great idea, that race was fast. The best part was that we raced after the sun went down and the lights came on. I totally loved that, it took me back to the days when I used to adventure race and do 24 hour mountain bike races. I love racing at night. Plus, the temperature outside was perfect at that point. The Points Race was fast and I stayed with the group the entire race. I was happy with that.

Saturday morning was another scorcher. I went to the Saturday morning session to race the Match Sprints. Nothing exciting there for me as I suck at those. Jen F. won and Andrea got 4th. That was fun to watch. The Saturday evening session was fun. We did a Miss and Out, which I really hate, but I actually got in the results. Check it out:

Miss n out

1 Jennifer Triplett
2 Jen Featheringill
3 Larssyn Rueegg
4 Megan Guarnier
5 Amanda Seigle
6 Kelly Bartholomew
7 Annette Williams
8 Jeanie Bihlmaier
9 Shelley Olds
10 Amara Boursaw

What is awesome is that the girls in 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 10 place are all from the Portland or Seattle area. We had a pretty impressive showing.

Later we did a Scratch Race, basically a crit with primes and a sprint for the win at the finish. I went with some breaks to hopefully get away, but it didn't happen. Unfortunately I missed the winning break that did get away and lapped the field. I was cooked at that point so I just stayed with the group for the finish. It was a hard race.

Now I get to look forward to Six Day, which starts tomorrow. Should be super fun!

10 June 2008

My Three Step Program to Coping with the Weather

So, after freezing my butt off racing PIR last night I woke up to what was it? Oh yeah, 45 degrees and rain. Last week PIR was a dumpfest as it poured during our entire race (it was actually kind of fun in a weird, demented sort of way). Seriously, it's June, or should I call it Junuary. The motivation to ride, yet again, the rain bike and wear all the necessary cold weather accouterments is starting to wane. As I rode to work, getting soaked I started to think about the stages of DENIAL I have been going through the last few months. I always think it's going to get better, and it doesn't. This pretty much sums it up:

April-Stage 1: The optimist/denial. I am not known for being an optimist so I can't figure out why I ever thought that things would improve. At this point I am in a perpetual state of thinking that tomorrow will be better. It's not.

May-Stage 2: Rage/Anger/Hatred. WTF? Yeah, I pretty much have a coronary when I see the weather report each day. I begin to consider moving to Arizona.

June-Stage 3: Submission/Abandonement of all Hope. Racing PIR in the rain pretty much pushed me into this phase, finally. I felt like I was going to be stuck in Stage 2 forever. I embrace the crappyness and learn to love it, or at least trick myself into thinking that. I long for nice days but do the training and work I need to even when the weather sucks.

Please sun, come back to play!

25 May 2008

New Family Member

We picked up a new family member this weekend. He is 7 weeks old and is a black little ball of fuzz, energy and cuteness. Check him out:


Checking out dad and the new digs


He eats a lot


And sleeps a lot


And chews a lot


And sleeps some more


Lander is in love with him. We first saw the puppies about 4 weeks ago and decided then and there that we wanted one. We were so impressed with the mom and his litter mates, they are great dogs and we were really impressed with the breeders Kirk and Laura Lillebo. We have hardly been able to contain ourselves in anticipation of the arrival of our new family member. He is an absolute doll and we love him tons.

We had been undecided on a name for quite a while. We knew we were getting a boy, but we couldn't reach an agreement as to what his name should be. With a few names in mind we decided to take him home and see what name fit him best (kind of what we did with Lander). Last night on the way home (it was a 1.5 hour drive from picking him up) we hit a huge thunderstorm that created a lot of havoc around the Portland/Vancouver area. He slept through all of it. One of the names that we liked was Stormy and we figured that the thunderstorm was a pretty interesting coincidence. So, Stormy it is. Plus, we live in the Northwest where it's always "Stormy".

Here's a cute video of him when we got him home and perked up. He likes to stalk his toys before he fetches them. Good boy!


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22 May 2008

De-Motivation

I am not sure how or why it happened, but it has been an absolute struggle to motivate myself to blog. Usually I look forward to posting, but it has seemed like more of a job than something fun I enjoy doing. It probably has something to do with a) the weather that totally sucks, b) bike racing season is in full force, c) Lander has begun another round of swim lessons for the summer and d) landscaping the yard.

Today was the first day that I seriously considered selling my house and moving someplace that isn't 50 degrees and rainy right now. Last weekend was so completely awesome. It was nice to wake up and only have to concern myself with what SPF of suncreen I am going to wear when I ride. Now it's back to the rainy, drizzly crap that I am so, so tired of!

The racing season has been slow to start for me. Since we can't race at the velodrome when it rains (the track has 43.5 degree banking and is like a sheet of ice when wet) it makes it really difficult to get any training races in. The annual Eric Kautzky Memorial track race got rained out after only one race of three. I did manage to make it onto the podium even though we only did one race so it was a good day. We raced a Miss and Out which is a fun race, but not a race that I do very well in because it is so short. Basically you ride a few laps and then they start pulling the last rider across the start/finish on every lap until the last two are left to duke it out for the win. There is a lot of jockeying for position at the front as people try not to get pulled. I lucked out and ended up third from the front when Andrea attacked. A lap or so later there was a crash behind me and Heather attacked, then I attacked and Jen and I got off. I knew I was hosed as Jen is one of the best sprinters I know and she and I were left to duke it out for the win. Yeah, that didn't go so well for me. So, I got 2nd, which is the 1st loser right?

L to R: Me, Jen, Heather
Moments before this picture was taken Heather showed us the proper podium posing technique to make our quads look super-sized (yeah, like I need help doing that)

So, here are some other random pictures of the last few weeks that I took when it wasn't raining (miracle, I know):

Mother's Day gift: Bike tools and Gerber Daisies. I couldn't be happier!

Mid-morning visitors, a rare sight during the day. They ate all the dandelions.

Boulders arriving for landscaping

Lander playing king of the hill on the dirt piles


Post rain fun

Sunset with moon




01 May 2008

Lucky Number Seven

Lander turned 7 this week and we had a lot of fun celebrating with him.

Decisions, decisions. Which one do I open first?

Landers party with his friends was held at Big Al's. They went bowling, ate pizza, drank way too much pop, had cake and opened presents. Honestly, watching kids bowl is so hilarious. Check out the great technique Lander has:

video


Lander in his pirates mask (upside down) at his pirate party with his friends

Chowing down after bowling

Ready to make a wish

Opening gifts with friends (complete with Miles picking his butt for the camera)

25 April 2008

Day Long Gone

Remember that day? It was two weeks ago, it was a Saturday and it was, what? 70 degrees! Yes, 70 degrees, and sunny. It seems so far away now, but I still have fond memories of it. I remember it well and I get all misty eyed just thinking about it. I was at the Kings Valley race and this was all I had to wear:
Thanks to my awesome teammate Eryn (who is the most core pregnant person I know) for the pre-race photo. So, two pieces of information can be gleaned from this photo. First, it was warm and therefore I only had to wear standard warm weather cycling clothes (no hat, long finger gloves, tights, booties, jacket and all the other stuff that makes you feel slow and sloppy when you ride). Second, it was dry, hence the white shorts and their miraculous appearance at such an early season race. Not a chance of puddles, road grime or wet roads that would taint the color of my brand new white shorts. I actually got a sunburn, which has now turned into a tan but no one would know since I have been wearing jackets, ski hats and all the bulky winter crap I am sick of for the last two weeks. My white shorts and I miss the sun, please come back and bring some hotness with you.

So I never did post about this race. Kudos to all 70 women who showed up to race, it was awesome to have such a great showing. Please come back! Okay, race report. Don't worry, I am going to fashion this race report after a radio commercial I heard for Blockbuster where they would re-cap a movie plot in 30 seconds or less. Here it goes:

First lap: Squirlley human pinball machine on wheels, stayed in back and out of trouble. Second lap: pack thins out, nothing exciting, Cat 4/5 men's group catches us and passes us, wow I am still with the group on a course that has HILLS, miracle. Third and final lap: Wow, the fun begins. Some straggler Cat 4/5 men that have no chance of catching their group berate us for being in their way when they try to pass. We are racing, you are not, get over it. We are nice and let them through. Less than a mile later we catch up to one. Jan tells him "Hey, your not so fast now" and he fires back with a derogatory explicative towards her, I fire back with explicative (yes I am supposed to be a good Mormon but I do occasionally profane in races and in all honesty it wasn't that bad. I know, I need to stop justifying what I did.). We drop him and continue on with our race. There is a crash a few miles from the finish, I stay out of it. I make it up part of the finish climb with the skinny climber girls but when the those 110 lb. ladies start attacking on the climb I go backwards. I finish, happy with my training race. Yeah, yeah go eat a bunch of food, rest and so on.

Okay that was way better than my last drawn out post and much more fun to write. I think I just set a new precedent for myself. But seriously, I miss the you sun, please come back soon!

20 April 2008

Seriously, It's April!

Okay, enough is enough

02 April 2008

Piece o' Cake

***WARNING: BORING RACE REPORT!!! IF YOU DON'T LIKE BIKE RACING, FIND SOMETHING ELSE TO READ! (Your car insurance policy would certainly do)***

Mmm, yeah that title is a total misnomer. Last Sunday was my first race of the season, you know the one where everything hurts, your race bike feels weird (i.e. it doesn't have fenders or weigh 25 pounds!) and you really have no clue what your fitness level is. Usually I have at least a couple of hard team rides in my legs before I start racing so I can at least know at what HR the tunnel vision and dizziness (what I call race brain) is going to start. This year I had zilch, nothing, totally foreign territory for me. The fitness quandry was compounded by the fact that Bryan had just installed the new SRAM shifters on my bike, and I had only ridden it once, and that was three weeks ago. So now I have the fitness issue and I can't remember how to shift my bike proficiently. Luckily I was smart enough (or dumb enough to just honk on the thing until it did something) to figure out the shifting on the first lap, plus it was a flat course so not too much thinking involved which was definitely a plus once the race brain sets in.

Lets just say that winter conditions were in abundance during the race even though it was the end of March. We had sun, rain, hail and a skiff of snow. Every lap had something different to offer, oh joy! I have a sneaking suspicion that the reason the weather was so crappy was because I skipped my last meeting of church to go race. Had I stayed in church and not raced, it would have been sunny and 70 degrees (yes, you can all kill me later).

My goal for this race was to a) not get dropped, b) race as hard as I could to get into some sort of racing form, and c) do a lot of work to help out my friend Mel (since she is the most awesome sprinter I know) so that she would be fresh for the final sprint. The race went really well. There were quite a few women from Seattle that came down and several teams present so that made the race really interesting, attacking, countering, tactics, etc.. Nothing was successful in staying off the front so we stayed together until the final lap. I had a lot of fun chasing down attacks, it was the best training for the pursuits I will do on the track. During our lovely hail/snow/rain storm on the final lap I thought to myself, man this would be a great time to attack. I know I was preoccupied with keeping the hail from stinging my face (which it managed to scratch my new Oakley Radars, but if you look at Oakley's wrong they will scratch) and wondering if I was ever going to have feeling in my fingers and toes again. Right after I had that thought Rebecka H. launched a hard attack off the front. For some reason I was in the front and decided to try to reel her in, except at this point my legs were so cold that whatever snap they had, was gone. We were in a nasty cross wind section (so windy that it actually caused a crash in the Master Men's 1/2/3 race I found out). I caught up to Rebecka and looked behind me expecting to see our small peloton trailing behind me and there was no one there! What? I had managed to drop the girls behind me when I went after Rebecka and created a gap. At this point my legs felt like absolute crap and the last thing I wanted was to be in a 2 person break-away working twice as hard with no rest. I could barely stay on Rebecka's wheel, and when I could finally start helping her by taking pulls, I would watch our speed drop. It was pathetic. We were by ourselves for a while, but a couple of miles from the finish we saw a group of 5 coming up behind us. At this point Becka dropped me and I was content to rest until the girls behind caught up and then try not to get dropped by them (at this point I had nothing left). Mel was in that group and I was able to get behind her at the back. It was good for me at this point because we still had to catch Becka and she had two teammates in this group so they wouldn't chase, Mel and I had no reason to chase, so the chasing was left to two girls which kept the pace where I could keep up. I managed to recover a bit, we caught Becka, and about the 1K mark everyone started slowing to play the cat and mouse game of not wanting to be on the front in the wind going into the final sprint. I had nothing to lose so I sat on the front with Mel behind me. There was an acceleration right before the final turn to the finish. I tried to stand up to go with and the legs screamed "stick a fork in me, I'm done", so I sat down and rolled in across the finish in 7th place.

I don't think that the best races are always the ones that you win. This race was great for me because I surprised myself with how good I felt and the race was interesting. I can't wait until the next one :)

31 March 2008

ZooLander

Finally a sunny spring break day. Lander was really excited to go skiing again so I couldn't resist. Zoolander was the nickname his instructors gave him. Eventually, they shortened it to "Zoo". Kind of cute I think. I skied with his group in the afternoon and it was a total blast! Watching kids learn to ski is fun. Lander learned a ton of new tricks: skiing switch, catching air and he was introduced to the terrain park. I am sure that by the time he is 9 he will be on twintip (hopefully tele) skis. Here are some pics and video of the day.


Lander listening intently. Notice the carrot from lunch in his goggle strap? All the kids had them, he eventually ate his on the lift when he got hungry.


video
Lander coming down a short black diamond run. He is the 2nd coming down.


video
Lander venturing off the trail, again.


video
Lander gets his first "big air"


video
Lander learns to ski switch

28 March 2008

March Madness

Today was day 1 of Landers Spring Break and this was what we woke up to:


Yeah, it's snow, at our house. We immediately packed up the ski gear and headed to the mountain where it looked like this:




Does this look like spring to you? I think not, but I won't complain.

One word will sum it up: Epic. Lander took a ski lesson in the morning which left me free to wander the resort in search of untracked powder. Well, it wasn't hard to find. On my first 3 runs I was making freshies in knee deep pow pow. I then decided to check out Private Reserve and again, was in thigh deep powder that no one had skied. I ventured back up to the Star lift to see if there was any chance that Heather Canyon was going to open and ding, ding, I was a winner. I got there right as ski patrol was taking down the ropes. I have never had such luck, freshies all the way down Heather. Being that there were no lift lines, I made laps in Heather until Landers lesson was over and I was pooped.

Lander and I had a ridiculously expensive lunch at the lodge, but hey, it's spring break and we can splurge. It took some coaxing, but I was able talk Lander into taking a couple runs with me. Of course I had left the camera in the car, but the wind and snow was so bad that it would have been impossible to get any good pictures or video. His instructor had taken him in the trees a little and said that he was doing well controlling his speed and turning. We did some easy blue runs and an easy tree run. Lander kept saying he wanted to ski something steep, he is his mother's son. There was an easier black diamond right by the lift so I took him down it and did awesome. He picked his way down and even passed a girl learning to snowboard. He was so excited that he wanted to go again.

On the next run I decided to take him into Two Bowl, another black diamond. This is one of my favorite places to ski. The snow is always good as its East facing aspect allows it to wind-load so every run has good snow. I didn't know how Lander would do in such steep and deep terrain. He had a blast. It was so fun to watch him. The snow was up to his little thighs and he would lean so far back on his skis that he would drag his butt in the snow. He did really well on his first excursion into powder. When the slope mellowed out Lander found some untracked snow that no one had skied in. He floated through it and started to giggle as he felt his skis floating in the snow. That to me is what it is all about. Watching Lander discover the sensation of floating through powder and sharing it with him was by far the most awesome thing I have ever done. It pretty much beats any day of great skiing I have ever had. Now all Lander talks about is skiing in the black diamonds in the "shaggy, powdery snow". Sounds good to me, when can we go next? Oh yeah, Monday!

24 March 2008

Afternoon Fun

We had an afternoon treat today, a nice sunny day appeared after a foggy morning. Lander wanted to test out his new fishing pole that he made in an outdoor class at school last week. We headed down to Canyon Creek by our house to see if we could catch anything. He had so much fun with his pretend fishing pole that now he wants a real one. Maybe Lander can start bringing home dinner.

Showing off his cool fishing pole

Fishing spot #1

Fishing spot #2

Evidently Hosta grows here in the wild. Hmmm, a nice start of that would go great in my yard.