Tuesday, January 3, 2012

2011 -Year in Review

In the tradition of every other blog I'm keeping up on, it's time to take a look at 2011 in review.  Since my updates to this blog have been somewhat spotty anyways, it would be nice to take a look at some the things that have happened in 2011.  This may be only for my own records, but it sure does help to see what has changed over time.

Started out the year with an interest on running, and triathlon. 

Valentine's Day Dash run around Greenlake, 5k. Lot's of people at this event, and I was trained up feeling strong. It's extremely FLAT and I'd planned on that, with a PR of 19:13.

Green River Marathon ran with no training. Loved the casual feel of the event, and the great spirits of the volunteers!  This is a repeat event from now until ....  Although, I vow to train for it from now on, 26.2 miles is just a bit too far not to train.  Not trying to be a "tough guy", just too disorganized to train properly. 5:30 finish time.  Not happy about that time.

STP (Seattle to Portland) classic regional ride 200 miles 1300+/- feet climbing.  Didn't register, and didn't use any support.  Learned a great lesson on that one though, will never do that again!  Nothing terrible happened, but I don't think it's right to ride without registering.  Ride was fun simply because of the number of friends on it, and the lessons I learned along the way.  Felt very strong for this ride.  Not sure on finish time, but felt like I could go faster.  Kept pace with my buddies the whole way.

RAMROD (Ride Around Mt Rainier in One Day) epic regional ride 184 miles 12,000 feet climbing. This was 2 weeks after STP, so the taper was interesting for the two events in one month.  This event required some volunteer time the year before (2010) in order to get a ticket to ride.  Was absolutely beautiful day, and riding conditions.  Spent part of a climb in a small waterfall and pond along one of the last climbs (Cayuse pass). Finished strong, and felt again like I could go faster next time. The climb up to Inspiration Point was along "Longmire" and I really hammered the pedals.  Felt great.

Put some logic to work. Through Campy and another friend, discovered that I could get in 3-5 bike races for the price of one triathlon!  Most sprint distance tris are $75-$95.  I can race for as little as $15 at some bike events!  Joined the Blue Roosters racing team and love it.  Started trying to figure out what events to participate in.  Decided on Track (April-August) and Cyclocross (October-January).  Was very bummed to find out that Cyclocross aka CX was only on Sundays for the most part.  However, through subjection I was given the opportunity to race a Saturday series out of Bellingham.  Details to follow.

Bike MS in Mt Vernon.  This is mostly a fundraiser with a fun ride with good friends for extra credit. Very casual pace, good food, very friendly folks.

Ghost of Seattle half marathon, 13.1 miles.  Ran this one with a friend.  Another very casual event with limited entry fees ($25) and smallish group of runners.  Looking forward to this one again in '12.

Cascade Cross Series Cyclocross races begin.  Raced Woolley cross in Sedro Wooley on the ground of an old mental hospital, and was hooked!  Campy let me borrow his steel mountain bike very heavy with fat tires, to try out the CX thing.  After 45 minutes of misery on the race course I was hooked.  In fact the picture at the beginning of this blog post was immediately after the race.  I love it, hooked.

These race series seem to have 1-2 races per month so November was no different with another CX race on fat tires. Interesting, I was having fun even though there was almost no chance of catching the other riders in my category because of the weight of the bike as well as more importantly the rolling resistance of those fat tires.  So I was determined to find a deal on a "real" CX bike.

Found a K2 Enemy bike for sale on Craigslist for under $500 and was set.  Early Christmas present.  Got some tires from a teamate, and was ready to race.  At another Cascade race "Thriller Cross" I endo'd off a built up skinny and landed on me noggin (not me in the pic).  After a quick evaluation, my fingers and toes still worked so I raced and took 4th in my group.  Couple days later my new Dr at the Sports Medicine Clinic in Northgate told me "congratulations, you have a concussion".  Now I wait for everything to heal, and will begin again the training plan, most likely having to write off a race here in January, the last one of the series as well as the Valentine's day run in February.  Been studying up on techniques to avoid this kind of crash again.

Plans for 2012

Get organized!
I'd like to be more organized with training, and actually have a REAL training plan I stick to.  This includes taking into account the longer events like Green River Marathon as well as another STP (paid), and of course my track and CX racing endeavors.

Work on skills training!
Like falling off bikes the correct way, and how to better control the bike.  Bike handling skills.

Get involved!
As in with the kids more.  Would love to get them out to do some riding with Daddy and Mommy more often.

Drink more water!
And less coffee    :(