Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Keep up.

That was the "fortune" message on my Yogi green tea this morning.

Hmm..keep up what? Blowing off everything else to ride my bike? Keep up the drinking wine every night? Keep up with Eddie on the trail? Keep up the good work?

I got in a decent ride in the dirt today, on my too-big-green-unit. Geez, I can't wait for my smaller frame. I think I have already said that, but I really can't wait. Santa's tracking device says delivery is planned for this week. My fingers are crossed.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Fine tuning

Eddie spent last week in Macon, GA with 3 other Wobble-naught fitters to work with the A&F cycling team and picked up a couple interesting things. So, today was my turn for a bit of fine tuning on my road fit and some coaching on the basics. Eddie put my bike up on the trainer and made some slight adjustments, and then had me get up on the bike. I've been working diligently on my pedal stroke for the last several months, but what he taught me today seems to be the link I've been missing. With my new knowledge and focus, we headed out on the road for a 3 hour ride, and I was amazed....the timing of the muscle firing was much more efficient and climbing up hills seemed to be much less effort than they were on the same route this past's really cool how just a slight change in technique and focusing on the right things in the pedal stroke can make SUCH A DIFFERENCE!! Contrary to what some other fitters might say, bike fitting is not an art, it's a science. And, even further, proper technique in movement while cycling is also based on science. Golfers are constantly working on the mechanics and technique of their swing, we're doing the same with cycling. It seems that the best riders become the best riders because they are always working on improving. They don't assume they already know everything and how to do everything perfectly. I will have lots of time to work on further developing these and other fundamentals during the Kona/55nine Performance training camp this weekend. And, next week is Spring Break for me, and it's going to be ride, ride, ride.............yeah!

edit: Industry Nine has updated its website, and it actually made me drool..really. You must have a looky.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

OK, it's time to train

I feel a renewed sense of motivation. We saw temps in the 50's yesterday for our road ride in the Gaps, and......what felt like 65 today on the road south of the city!! It was knee warmers, but I brought my arm warmers along just in case..but I didn't really need them. Yesterday's ride was with my wonderful husband and the famous Mike Livingston. I swear Eddie wasn't even working hard and he schooled us both. Mike was feeling much better today when we rode with a guy named Travis and another guy John, who is putting in CRAZY hours on the bike, in prep for TR this year. He is riding over 35 hours this week, and 42 next week!! And, all at base pace. That is insane.

Unfortunately, with the GA SS race coming up way too soon, it can't be a race I focus on..apparently I will be training right through it. With Cohutta 100 also coming up fast, I foresee a lot of climbing in my near future. I really haven't been up to the mountains at all lately, and i'm really anxious to get up there. 55nine training camp is on the horizon :-)

My sparkly new Unit isn't here yet....I'm hoping santa delivers it this week!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007


We finally have some decent weather around here! Oh, but it's my rest week, so I'm going nuts wishing I could be outside riding all day, instead..I have to rest. Hopefully it holds through the weekend so I can get some good hours. The GA Singlespeed State Championship Race is just around the corner, and my next event. I wish it was a longer race, it's an XC race...and I don't race XC. Maybe having a sweet bike, a super cool costume, and consuming lots of beer will count for something at the SS race...maybe??

Oh well, I'm not going to stress over it. I think Hodge and the Linders will put on a good time for us...and Cohutta 100 will also be here in no time!! Must stay focused! I can't believe how time flies once the races start.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

6 hours of Razorback pics

here's some pics that Georgia local Mark D. took...

I got tons of compliments on my Twin Six jersey too. Go here to get one.

55nine client and Cannondale rider Shey Linder

The one and only Eddie O

Pics courtesy of Mark D.

6 hours of Razorback

The trip down: The family (Eddie, me, Jackson, and Porter) were planning on heading out of Atlanta at 7am on Friday morning. Well, apparently people in FL were taking bets on how many hours late we were going to be arriving...turns out we were only 4.5 hours late :) We had to stop at a bike shop in Gainesville, FL where Eddie did a fork swap-a-roo and I had my rear shock bushing checked out. They didn't have a replacement, but said it looked like it was just loose and to try tightening it instead of replacing it. Good deal.

The arrival: We drove into the parking lot and it was already pretty full. Kona had it's village set up with tents, decorations, sweet demo bikes, etc. They even had a 2007 purple unit 2-9 to demo.. Too bad it was a 19" and not an 18", but I love the color of it!

We drove around the lot and ignored the soon-to-be setting sun and caught up with others we hadn't seen in a while such as Carey Lowery, Ernesto, Zeke, and others. We stake our claim to pit land and start to get ready to pre-ride. Eddie pulls my King Kikapu off the rack and starts to try to tighen the bolt on my rear shock, and the next thing I hear out of his mouth is "F&@%"! Great, what happened? The bushing or bolt or whatever it is called snapped in half. I didn't have a spare bike, and we briefly contemplating doing a 12 hour duo where Eddie rode 6 hours and I rode 6 hours on his King Kikapu...but neither of us wanted to ride the second 6 hours because of the cold weather :) So he gets to work looking through his toolbox while I go wandering around asking for something to fix my bike. It turns out Eddie was able to find a really old Specialized bushing from one of his earlier bikes and it was a little large but it worked as a replacement. I would only have to deal with a lot of creaking while I rode, but that was fine, at least I could race. We did a quick pre-ride and it took me awhile to get used to the bike...26" wheels, narrow handlebars, super-high saddle, and...gears. I have major respect for the simplicity of a single-speed. However, the FOX fork felt AMAZING the second I hit the trail. It makes the Reba seem useless. The course was was in great shape, and not boring. We went out for a quick bite with Eddie's friend Mike and headed for the hotel.

The race: Once again, we arrived late..about 9am for a 10am start, but it was OK since we figured it would start fashionably late, as usual. More familiar faces were found at the start..Mark D (whose pictures I'm "borrowing here") Sandra Tomlinson, Julie Barker, Peter from NC, and many others. It seemed like most of the women were racing the 6 hour, and not the 12 hour...and some super fast women, at that. The mens 12 hour category was stacked with people such as Harlan Price, Rob Lichtenwalter, Andy Mills, Harvey Minton, and Ernesto. I decided to take Jackson and Porter with me to rack my bike on the stands and somehow in the midst of trying to wrangle 2 hyper German Shorthaired Pointers and my bike, my bike ended up falling on me with the tip of the saddle puncturing my calf, leaving it very tender and bruised. Yes I am a clutz..and unfortunately my calf muscle would be necessary to race for the next 6 hours! Ouch. So, the race started with another really long run. I have got to work on my run so I can get to the front..I paced myself so I was near Carey, Julie, and a couple other fast women so I thought I would be OK. However, the masses go straight into the singletrack and a huge long line forms with people walking..everything. In the midst of waiting in line to drop down the first bigger drop, a guy and girl come running along side of everyone waiting, and cut in front like they are special or something. I wanted to say to them.. "WTF?? You should have just run faster during the RUN! Wait your turn, now!" And the guy drops down, but the girl..she RUNS down the hill in the MIDDLE of the trail. I'm on my bike barreling down at least 20mph straight towards her. I can't stop myself from yelling at her...something about how she should get out of the way and if she's going to cut in line she better ride her bike, not run it in the middle of the trail. The first lap was very stressful for me..I hate huge crowds and aggressive passers on the trail. I stopped a couple times to make some on-trail adjustments as I got used to my King Kikapu, but other than that things were OK. I ditched my Wingnut pack on the second lap and settled into an even pace. My calf felt OK for the time being (because of adrenalin, I guess), but my pedal springs were both too loose and I was having problems staying clipped in, which was a bit unnerving at times, especially on a course like Razorback. The next several laps went smoothly, and I got in 5 laps in 6 hours..not excellent, but not bad. My last lap was quite painful on my calf muscle but I knew I was almost done. Nothing really went wrong..I fueled well, and rode well and consistent. I didn't crash, and my bike stayed together (although at times it sounded like it was falling apart!) I realized, after the race, that there was no separate 6 hour womens category, the men and women were lumped together. I think I ended up in around 5th place (women)which is just fine with me. The rest of the evening was a haze, I was exhausted from lack of sleep and I could barely walk because of my calf. I missed the end of the 12 hour race, but I know our friend Harvey ended up 3rd, behind Harlan Price and Rob L. Awesome job, Harvey! Eddie had some bad luck with a mechanical in the 6 hour race, but he was able to score a Kona demo bike and still ride a hard race. Maybe in a way it's good..since it sounds like he's even more motivated now to kick ass in out.

Thanks to Richard Walker for helping with the bottle hand-outs!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Hello King Kikapu

I haven't raced or even ridden this bike since my love affair with my Unit 2-9 began last year. Well, I take that back..I rode the King Kikapu once a few months ago and had a terrible ride on it. I thought it was just me, but as my mechanic built it up again today, he realized that the stem/bars had been set up all wrong! Phew, so now that it's been Wobble-naughted and set up correctly, I should enjoy the ride on it at Razorback. One of the FOX bushings is really loose on the rear shock, so hopefully it can withstand 6 hours of racing + the preride. Fingers are crossed that I might actually be able to score a replacement bushing before the race.

No, I don't have the Ergons on it yet, but I received them the other day and they look sweet (bright Ergon green) and very comfy looking! I just don't have time to swap grips at this last minute, but I am going to try to swing by a shop to get them swapped tomorrow.

We're almost done packing, and leaving town early tomorrow. The dogs are coming along, and we might end up sleeping in the tent with them if the weather is really as cold as it looks like it's going to be! Ugh.

Eddie's doing a great job with the bike fittings while I've been swamped with Grad School. We've had several big (OK, HUGE) name road racers come through the word is spreading. Keep your eye on the 55nine Performance site for the latest as we update it...slowly :)

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Let the excuses begin...or...

it's time to race!

Hmm. I still don't have a bike built yet (you think I would have learned my lesson from last year's BURN race), I am over my head in nutrition projects for school, it's FREEZING here so I'm riding inside, and, (per my coach), I'm not tapering at all for the Razorback race this weekend.. Luckily next week is a recovery week for me. Not to mention, it's going to be a low of 28 in FL the night before the race so we are not camping (that's what I say). But, the hotel rooms are almost all booked b/c of some stupid car race :)

I actually considered bailing on the race yesterday, but my coach said he already signed me up. Great. Oh well, hopefully once I leave Friday AM, I can forget about all the school/work/life related stress and just concentrate on having a fun and focused race.

OK then, it's time to race!

Friday, February 09, 2007

c'est belle

Picture borrowed from

Thursday, February 08, 2007

I can't wait!!!!!

I can't take it anymore. Apparently, the purple unit is going to be more of a blue shade (it looks way more purple on the website). I'm happy about this, I saw pics of some on and yes, I'm happy about this!!! I ordered my I9 29er SS wheels in silver...yeah...and should be getting some Ergons to top it off.

So..Florida was nice, but Eddie and I had a miscommunication that caused me to only have my 32x22 gear to ride for 50 miles of flat FL sandy singletrack on Saturday. It wore me out! Any sign of even a slight incline made me just too happy because I could stand up. Sunday was spent at Razorback, I decided after that ride that it is not the place for 29er, especially one that is too big. There are tons of tight off-camber sections, steeps, and just awkward pieces of trail and you are constantly accelerating..not the place for my green unit. I will *very* temporarily bring out the Kona King Kikapu for the preride and the race, and then I will probably never ride it again after I have my 18" 2007 Unit 2-9. Since I've been back in town, I'm still trying to recover from the weekend. My legs still feel full of lead. Things have also been quite busy with the new 55nine project.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

I rode in shorts yesterday!

And a short sleeve jersey too!

My new skill of the day on the rollers was standing up, and I managed it without incident. The one-legged drills are now getting easy. Ah...the exciting life of riding indoors...

Anyway, I'm taking the day off today so I can wrap up school work and pack. The forecast in FL is still looking pretty rainy, but I will take it. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like the purple unit will make it here in time for Razorback. I reeeaaallllyy didn't want to ride the too-big-green unit there, I did 2 laps on it a few months ago at Razorback, and it was kind of a pain in the ass there. Oh well, I suppose it will be good for some kind of training.