Last Week In Review & A Race Report!

Last week was a horrible one; not because of anything in particular other than the fact that it was hotter then HELL – 40c and above for a majority of the week meant getting out on the bike at bullshit o’clock was the only option if one wanted to get a ride in; even then it was still hot. Now I don’t mind the heat, but 32c at 5am is just a little too much!

This week was planned to be a shorter week anyways with only 10hrs of riding on the cards; but just because it was short doesn’t mean it wasn’t hard and fast with quick rides on Wednesday, with the group on Thursday and Crit racing on Saturday. If I could figure out how to post my Training Peaks “time in zone” chart I would – but in summary 82mins ABOVE lactate threshold in a week is… Well working hard!

Out before the heat sets in!
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Race Report: As I mentioned above, I raced on the weekend it was my first of hopefully many Criterium races I had a blast and here is a little race report!

I’d been meaning to do Geelong Cycling Club’s summer crit series all summer unfortunately due to other commitments I missed the first half of the series before Christmas – finally on Friday I decided to get my CA license so I could race on Saturday. I tossed and turned all night wondering if I should be racing B-Grade or C-Grade as this would be only my first crit (second road race)… I rode 20km from home to the race to warm up and see how I felt – the scene was set, B grade it was.

The race was fairly uneventful, it started at a steady but reasonably quick pace and the bunch of about 25 or so stayed together for a majority of the race with only a few one man breaks from time to time which the bunch would soon dispose of. With the mountain bike experience in mind I tried to position myself nearest the front as possible but found myself naturally rotating through the bunch a little, front one lap, back next, then front again. I felt good as the race progressed despite my HR being well above LTHR! Soon we got the “3 Laps” board, I was excited and feeling good – until midway though the 3rd last lap, I come down the decent to the back of the course much faster then the bunch as I had most laps; soon I found myself closing the gap to the single man break in front of me, but also with a gap the bunch behind me… I look back only to see the bunch winding up “fark” I thought to myself!!! It felt like the whole bunch had just hit warp speed and flew past, I hammered up the climb to the start finish area trying my arse off not to get dropped from the bunch, doing my best just to grab a wheel, I didn’t care who’s at this point but the gap got bigger, and bigger, and bigger…. I finished the race circulating by myself, with only sight of a few other riders that got blown out the back a few minutes after I did.

So that’s it first Crit race done, I probably could have done better but I think my lack of experience probably let me down a little (little hard early on). Still I had a blast riding with GCC and B-Grade so naturally I will be back next week to do it all again!

I was neither happy nor disappointed with the result, the race offered a great opportunity to add some decent intensity to my riding; not too dissimilar to an XCO event. Hopefully the Crits pay off leading into the run to XCO nationals, and later the XCM and Endurance events I’ve planned for the year!

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Long & Easy!

For most longer rides are reserved for the weekends; I guess I am lucky enough to have reasonably flexible working arrangements
coupled with the fact that I am a stupidly early riser, midweek brings a good opportunity to get in some KM’s without impacting on family life “too” much.

So this morning I get dressed and head to the shed without much of a clue of where I was going,  only knowing that it would be a relatively easy Z1/Z2 ride. This morning I opted for something a little different and set off towards the coast and Cadel country hoping for a decent ride. The wind was a little more then I had bargained for with the first hour of riding completed at 23kph, fortunately once I reached Ocean Grove the wind was at my back along the beach all the way to Torquay and a lovely cross wind back home.  Ended up riding a solid 96kms in 3:24:30 (28k avg), most of the ride completed in Z1 (2:05) and Z2 (1:07), with a little fluff when pushing into the wind, and the odd climb.

This is the second time I’ve headed down the coast in the space of a week; it offers something different to the farmland around my home. As I said to another local rider on the way home on the weekend “there is only so many times you can see the same tree and still be interested”. The change of scenery has renewed my interest in doing longer rides – I feel an epic one coming up.

Didn’t spot Cadel, but it was a great ride all the same!

 

      

Little Things I Hate!

There isn’t much I hate about riding, or even dislike for that matter but there are frustrations from time to time when it comes to the equipment one chooses to use.

I use tubular tires on my road bike as I much prefer the way they feel not to mention I got my Mavic Cosmic Carbone SL’s for a price so cheap I felt like I’d robbed the guy I brought them off.

Anyways last week install a new “Tub” on the rear after doing 3500 trouble free kms on the last set… On Saturday I was coming home from a Z1/Z2 ride down to Torquay and back when I hear an almighty “twang” after hitting something on the road… I stopped thinking I’d snapped a spoke or something, all looked fine so off I set again!

Get home only to find a nice 1cm split in my rear tire; a tire that was only 300kms old!!!!!

After much trouble and my first experience pulling a tubular tire apart, it’s now patched; hopefully I will get another 3000kms out of it because these things aren’t cheap! Very glad I got a set of Conti’s of a firend, rather then shelling out $100 + a pop for a set of Veloflex’s like I was going to.

Welcome…

Welcome to my new website, this is my entry into the blogosphere and of course MTB mediocrity… This will be a journal of my training, travels and tribulations.

 

Me:
I am Aaron,  a 30yo male, chasing the dreams of my 23yo self. A mountain biker, avid road rider and more importantly a husband to my wife and father to my daughter… In my spare time I work in construction management!

 

The Year That Passed:
For me 2013 was a year of change, not only was it a big change moving the family back to Victoria from Queensland after nearly 4 years away it was also big change in the lifestyle that went with it; the year saw me get back onto the mountain bike after visiting the local mountain bike park for the first time in years, it saw me enter my first MTB race in years, it saw me ride a road bike for the first time in years, and also saw me make the decision that if I am going to have a crack at “racing” I might as well have a decent crack. The hunger for riding and competition was back!

 

The Year to Come:
This coming year will be about setting goals, striving to achieve them and hopefully ticking them off my list!

I guess the reason for the page… To chase my dreams of mountain bike mediocrity!

So my goals for this year are listed below; some simple ones but others will require hard work and riding smart rather then the usual hammer all the time and call going up a hill twice “intervals”; there is more to it then that and the science of training is something that has always interested me so there will be a bit of that posted here from time to time too…

This year I want to ride 12,500km.

I want to ride down the coast, for something different!

I would like to tackle the climbs of  south side of Mt Macedon, Donna Buang, Lake Mountain and Falls Creek.

I would like to do well in Age Group at the 2014 XCO Nationals, I use the term “do well” very loosely as XCO is not my preferred event (to short), but the race this year is in one of my favorite riding spots so why not.

This year I want to finish strong at the Wombat 100, I was kicking myself I missed the race last year even though my unfit self surely would have died; Wombat Forest is somewhere I have a love for having ridden there quite a bit when I was younger making an almost weekly trip to go ride there.

This year I want to chase the podium, and hopefully make one of the steps in the 2014 Victorian Enduro Series. Last year I made massive improvements as I got fitter though the year managing an 11th and a 7th later in the season. This goal will be one of the biggest challenges of the year but I don’t think it’s too unachievable if I work hard during the year.

Start racing road more actively, I had my first race with my local club in October I promised the race coordinator I would be back after taking line honors in the Spring Handicap but haven’t been back due to other commitments. I would like to do the remainder of the local Crit Series and a few other races during the year as they pop up.

 

So that’s it, me, the year that was 2013 and the goals for the year 2014 to come – stay tuned for more updates as they happen; I will endeavor to make updates weekly if I can even it’s just to ponder my thoughts, read “dribble crap”.