Thursday, October 6, 2011

Blog Hiatus

Been busy doing other stuff and the blog has taken a backburner. Will eventually come back in full force.

Cross season has been going well. Hope to catch up with this writing about myself on the internet thing soon.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Vultures Knob Double Down Pukefest

Twice the laps twice the fun!

The good folks at 331 Racing put an event on at the Knob. Twice the laps as a normal cross country race, pretty simple huh.

It was about a million degrees out, so I figured that since I was running so damn late (huge surprise) I'd forgo the usual warmup. Worst idea ever. My start sucked, and I wasn't able to get into the groove until towards the end of the second lap.

By that time, the superheroes of local mountain biking: Walker and Twining were long gone. Time to stay steady and finish.

Shit it was hot. I kept drinking and pouring water on myself and trying to stay cool, but not much was helping. I soldiered on.

Kept it steady, but the heat was really wearing on me. I was riding super sloppy and just couldn't wait to be done.

After crossing the line I knew I was in bad shape. The goosebumps started and I started getting dizzy.

Drank a rootbeer and sat in the shade for a minute. Uh Oh....

Ran behind a car and started puking any and everything out of my body. Fun stuff.

My teammates took good care of me, as did Mindy, Rody and the rest of the 331 crew. After a cold compress and some more fluids into my body I was back with the living.

Nothing huge on the horizon for me, rest week and about to start base for my cross season. Fun stuff.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Tour of the Valley Days 1 and 2

TT went well enough. Should have prerode the course as I goofed my pacing up a little bit with a few unexpected rollers here and there that got me.

Went out way way too hard, was able to settle into a decent groove and had to fight the mental battle of wanting to give up on the way back. Toughed it out, and after all was said and done:

9 miles
6th place cat three.

Shoulda did better but oh well.

Road race was a battle of attrition.

On the second lap of the race, a gap opened at the top of the first steep kicker before pancake hill. Worked like a dog to try to bridge the gap right before the KOM pancake hill.

Finally closed it at the foot of the hill. Oh happy days. Got over the hill ok and began cramping super bad and limped in super slow.

Oh well.

Gartman has phat GC points after having a phenomenal ride both Friday and Saturday, so seems like I'll be working for him in the crit tomorrow. He's my hero.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Don't stop being my friend...

I did a time trial under my own volition. Oof.

Headed out with Rudy and Robert to the Leroy TT put on every Thursday at 6:30 by Jim Behrens.

My legs were cooked from 4 hours and half a pizza with Gartman earlier in the day, but with Tour of the Valley coming up I figured that I would need at least one race effort on my TT bike and all my matching spaceman costume.

The course was a pretty simple L-shaped out and back with a steep little kicker right near the turn around.

During warmup my legs felt horrible and I seriously debated not racing and helping Jim with timing or sitting around or bullshitting or whatever. But when it was go time, I decided to give it a crack.

Once I started rolling, my comptetitive juices or whatever must have kicked in. Either that or the pizza had unearthed itself from my stomach. I started going ok. My legs were cooked, so the little grade up to the steep kicker was really taxing on me, and I lost a ton of time from being unable to stay on top my gear. I kept having to upshift until I was probably in my 53/21 and spinning for dear life.

Felt ok on the home stretch. Tried my damnedest to keep the power down, but the old legs weren't exactly snappy.

Finished in 17:57, which I'm happy with. I'm thinking with fresh legs and more aero bullshit I can cut a decent amount of time off of that too. Plus it would help if I could turn my TT bike without killing myself!


Total Elapsed Time 00:17:57
Distance, mi 7.77
Work, kJ 342
Temperature, °F --
Average Power, Watts 317
Average Cadence 86
Average Speed, mph 25.89
Average Heart Rate 179

Friday, June 24, 2011

Reagan Park TT

Trying to get back into the swing of blogging.

The Reagan Park TT has come and gone another year.

I went for a little course recon on Friday with Chip Meek and Jeff Pendlebury, and the trails were ripping fast. Chip had the lines down, and following him through a few laps definitely helped a ton.

Come raceday, the trails were a bit greasy at spots from the previous night's rain, but all things considered, weren't too bad.

I had maybe ten riders start before me, within maybe 10 minutes I started picking people off one by one. Staying smooth in the corners and jumping hard at every opportunity. For once in my life I felt good.

All was going well, until I ran into a slower vet open expert. Being the considerate mountain biker I am, I tried to politely ask for a pass when he got the chance to slide out of my way.

No response...

Getting a bit less patient, I started demanding a pass: "Yo man coming through... move it!"

Still nothing. I started looking for a split second in which the twisty trail would allow me to pass without crashing into a tree. Lo-and-behold I got a little too ahead of myself and washed my front wheel out on a stick outside the trail. Fucking splendid. Note to everyone, if you're getting passed in a TT by someone who started like 5 minutes after you, get the hell out the way.

Back on the horse. I saw Chip gaining on me through the switchbacks. It was now my goal to not get passed by him. About 2 seconds after thinking this, I ate shit. Whoops.

He went by me like I was standing still. Impressive.

Motoring back to the finish, I ended up in third place with a time of 43:29. That's like 4 minutes faster than when I did the race in 2009, so not complaining.

Expert turnout was weak with 5 people. I got 3rd, which rules, but out of 4 finishers, it could be a lot better. Where's everyone at?

Friday, May 6, 2011

Home Free

Made it back to the 'burbs last night at about 11. 12 hours to get home. Ouch.

23 hours of riding in the last 5 days = tired me.

Tired me = no blog updates.

Now that I'm at home and near the coffee machine I'll put some updates together!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

On Failure

The Cohutta 100 was a fucking disaster. No questions about it.

I started off the race tactically stupid and got worked over position wise. After that it was a nightmare from there.

The heat was something I was aware of and cautious about, but it still took its toll. Some days you have it and some you don't. I didn't have it, and short of pulling the plug, I decided to just treat it as a training race (albeit an insanely expensive one) and trudge on through. Finished in 8:27, which is about an hour off of my goal. I'll write about it a bit more later on this week.

On the non depressing front...

A buddy of mine is letting me use his cabin in North Georgia for the week. Holy carp it's awesome up here.

Rode a slow recovery loop over Burnt Mountain on Sunday, got 3 hours in on the MTB in Elijay in the Bear Creek and Pinhoti trails today and am waking up ass-early tomorrow to do Brasstown Bald.

All sorts of sweet power data and photos and ride reports to come. I'm getting a phatty suntan too.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Whoa! Blogger Battle Update


Due to some technical snafu, Blue Ridge Adventures is now moving the blogger battle voting to facebook.

Thanks to everyone who voted from the get-go, but those votes are now void :-(

THE NEW LINK TO VOTE IS HERE. Thanks for your support everyone.

- John

Monday, April 25, 2011

RATL #1 aka I finally won a road race!

Quick reminder / plea for mercy...

Everyone vote for me for the Pisgah Stage Race Blogger Battle! Currently sitting in fifth. I know my dedicated friends / enemies can help me get into the top 2 spots and win this free entry!

Ok on to the race report.

I put carbon wheels on my bike, so you know I wasn't fuckin' around.

The race started super easy as every cat 4 race does. We noodled around for a few laps, then a few people started to get into the argy bargy side of things.

Team memember extraordinare Roberto went with a few moves early, but nothing stuck.

Weston Flick and another dude got feisty and went for a prime, and were brought back right at the line with myself and 2 other dudes countering the move.

Sweet baby ray, me and the other two dudes were clear.

Now we had maybe 5 seconds. Time to do some work to stay away. We actually worked together as a cohesive unit to get away. I might have been doing a little too much work, but I felt strong and I was determined to keep us away.

We eventually stretched our gap to about a minute, and then the cat and mouse games started. The Ride-On dude in the break with me was skipping pulls and when he was on the front he was not in the wind for two long. So either he was hurting or saving his energy for the sprint.

Funk dat. I went with maybe 2k to go, figuring if they wanted to win this race, they had to get by me first. I was brought back somewhat quickly, and that let me get on the Ride-On dude's wheel.

Game time.

I jumped right after we went over the bridge, and sprinted as fast as my little legs could take me. Saw the ride on dude out of the corner of my eye, so I got scared and had to throw my bike, bummer as I couldn't do my double flip-off salute I had planned. There's always next time.

First freaking place!

That's it.

Cohutta 100 this week then a week in N. Georgia to get some heavy duty miles in the legs.

Oh yeah... VOTE FOR ME!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Big News... Pisgah Stage Race Best Blogger Contest!

I figured my blog needed a bit of a shot in the ass as the race season was upon us and I'm sitting here with a broken hand.

What better way to do that to enter the Pisgah Stage Race Blogger Battle!

I don't know why they made it seem like I entered to take out Team Dicky aka Rich Dillen, but needless to say I plan on taking everyone down in a hail of 1's and 0's.

The top two vote-getters win, so I'd love any/everyone's help!

You can view the Pisgah Stage Race website here:

And you can vote for me here:

If you'd like to vote and share this, I'd be forever indebted to you! Might make you cookies or something.

Not sure why I look so mopey in my photo either, but that's the face I'll be making if I don't win this!

On Deck

Recovering from the broken hand quite nicely, and have been getting some good miles in on the road bike.

Cohutta 100 is in a little under 2 weeks, and I'm looking to cut some time off my finish last year. Here's my race report from last year if you're so inclined.

RATL this weekend so hopefully I'll be feeling good for that.

Some big news soon to come on the blogger front, hopefully this is the spark I need to return this thing to its former glory. Heh.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Oh happy days: AKA broken hand

Some sketchball decided to cause a big pileup at Barry Roubaix and Garth and myself were among the casualties.

For me: boxer's fracture on the hand, black eye (healing nicely), chainring puncture on the arm, and a ton of roadrash.

Should be out for five more weeks. The whole issue with that being the Cohutta 100 is in a little over three. We'll see how the hand is feeling by then, or if I'm gonna have to skip it.

The good news is I'm ok to ride the roadbike and got out for some miles this weekend, so I'm pissed off and stir crazy.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Snake Creek Gap TT Number 3

Big surprise... I flatted again.

I like Kenda Karmas, but I don't think they're quite tough enough for really rocky trails. I've flatted the same way multiple times now: a pinch flat on a tubeless tire. Sounds hard to do but I guess it really isn't. I'll get a 2 mm or so cut right where the sidewall of my tire meets the hook bead / sidewall of my rim. Because that area is so stressed by sideloads, the Stans doesn't want to seal it. Anyone have tire suggestions for me?

On a more positive note. I felt pretty good. The trial was nice and muddy. Heavy as all get-out. You'd stop pedaling and come to a halt in about 5 seconds, so it was a good setup for me. I stayed on the gas the whole time, and scared the crap out of myself constantly on every downhill as I two wheel slid everything.

Besides that it was business as usual. The trail got super foggy on the backside of the mountain, which added a cool Mordor feel to it. I saw about 6 unattended dogs walking around, probably out hunting with someone, but I thought I was hallucinating for a second. I was winning the battle of attrition until my flat.

It took me about 10 minutes to get the flat fixed, and I only had 5ish rocky miles to go, so it killed my time. I rolled in at 3:30, which wasn't as fast as my February time.

When all was said and done, I was 4th fastest time in the Men Under 30 open class, and 2nd in the Trifecta, which combines your time for all three races. Could have done better in both, but this was a training race series so I'm not beating myself up too much.

Barry Roubaix in two weeks, and Cohutta in a little over a month. Whoop!

Monday, February 28, 2011

Georgia Time

Headed down to Georgia this weekend for the last Snake Creek Gap.

Legs are feeling good, mentally I'm about as all-there as I can ever be. Ready to go mental.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Um... is this thing on?

Hey blogworld long time no talk.

Wanted to save you the boring-ness of talking about riding base miles, and haven't had much else good stuff to talk about as work is turning me into a dullard. Sleep, work, ride. Repeat ad nauseum.

Now on to some actual fun stuff. Bike racing!

After the last cross race of the season (a very fun Cap City Cross in rural Columbus) I took a few weeks off.

After those few weeks off, I was back at it in early January for the first of three Snake Creek Gap time trials. A few weeks off after a tough cross season left me with legs fresher than any in recent memory. I was feeling so good, when... wait for it... a mechanical!

The course is sort of like if they dumped West Branch on a big-ass mountain. Tons of climbing and rocks everywhere.

I was boogeying along, well on my way to my best time and hopefully a win, and before you know it, the familiar hiss of Stan's flying everwhere. Rad. At about mile 29 of the 34 mile race, I get a mechanical.

After dicking around with my tire for way too long (thanks to the people who bailed me out with co2 and eventually a frame pump after I exhausted my stash), I was back on the trail 30-45 minutes later. Fuckin' a. Did I mention that while I was trying to get my Stan's to seal up, it was 30 degrees and super windy and I was on top of a mountain ridge?

Less learned: if I flat on the trail, don't screw with getting my stans to seal a cut, just throw in a tire and go.

After that I was super cold and sore and pushed through the last 5 miles pretty slowly. Finished in 3:50, which is ok, but it was a bit of a blow to go from feeling great to that. Oh well.

February saw me doing the race again. I had a semi-big week of training before, so my legs felt like trash. The weather wasn't cooperating at all. And crossing the deep and freezing creek sucked.

Yep... sucked.

It was muddy and cold and miserable, and my head wasn't in it.

Those three factors culminated into me cracking terribly the last 9 or so miles, where the race gets hard. I started getting into the negative feedback loop of "Why do I do this to myself?" and pretty much just started my deathmarch to the finish line.

I still posted up a respectable time: 3:27, which is only 4 minutes off my best time from last year. With the crappy conditions and my mental health issues, I'll take it.

March should hopefully go a little better, and I am shooting for around the 3 hour mark. We'll see.

I'll get back into this bloggin' thing a bit more soon!