Thursday, 31 December 2009

31/12/2009

Lazy:
I'm not big into New Years resolutions, I figure if you want to do something then why wait for a special occasion to do it. So, I'm now going to state something that sounds very much like a resolution, but its just coinkydink that it's coming at new year.

I will ride the fatties every Wednesday it's humanly possible next year.

I'm saddened that the ride that helped teach me to ride dirt and introduced me to some great people has had such a decline.

While I'm not quite arrogant enough to think my mere presence and awesome qualities will draw people back to the ride, I do hope that having at least one constant face will encourage others to join me on the trails.

In my brain it's a ride where those new to the sport, can ride with those who've done a few laps and can show them a thing or two. It seems only a few years ago when a 15ish year old James Peacock was dragged along by his old man, riding that 5" dually he once owned. Languishing off the back he persevered for what seemed like months, now he's an Australian and Oceana champ.

I know come mid winter when it's cold, wet and miserable I'm going to hate myself for such bold statements, but screw mid winter me. He's a fucking sook, and probably fat to boot!

PMPW: 92kg

Wednesday, 30 December 2009

30/12/2009

Yarra Trails:
Organised to hit the inner Yarra Trails with Steve this morning. It's been a while since we'd ridden together, making the whole thing a big catch up session (no, I don't mean with each other).

For a change we decided to re-ride a few sections a couple of times, working to conquer trail obstacles that were plaguing us. In the end, despite neither of us cleaning these sections, it was just nice to practice moves and generally ride without feeling the need to get somewhere or beat someone.

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Fatties:
It was a very quiet week for fatties, none of the regular, or even irregular a-group were there, so I decided to tag along with Steve, Meg and Steffan (sp?) for a ride out to Bonds Rd and back.

It was good fun riding with different people, the trails are back to hardpack with a light dusting of dust (I really wish I had not used the word dust twice there). The ruts of winter have started to have the edges knocked round, meaning they're ripe for use as impromptu berms.

PMPW: 93kg

Tuesday, 29 December 2009

29/12/2009

Rest:
I got a decent sleep and hoped that would kick the DOMS, turns out they're still going to get worse before their better.

I stayed off the bike today and aim to get some dirt in tomorrow.

Looking back through this blog it seems the issues with my knee coincides with my tendency to work on my pedalling form. Perhaps to pedal better I will also need to adjust my road position to ensure that my muscles are used in a more balanced fashion. It's something I'll continue to ponder as my interest and understanding of the human body and bicycle fit continues to grow.

PMPW: 92kg

Monday, 28 December 2009

28/12/2009

Rest:
A little DOMSey today, the main areas that have caused me to walk around like an old man are Biceps, Back and Adductors.

Despite taking today off, I felt this quote I found to be an appropriate summation of how i've been thinking or at least trying to think about in the past few months.

"A man who wants to do something will find a way; a man who doesn't will find an excuse."
Stephen Dooley, Jr.

PMPW: 91kg

Sunday, 27 December 2009

27/12/2009

Jeff's:
After the CBFs all morning I felt obligated to use my afternoon to make my body better. Jeff's sounded like just the ticket.

It turns out Jeff got a present, so we spent the whole session playing with it. What a nice bloke to share his new toy with us.

1 x 50 Deck Squats
1 x 10 Cleans @ 25kg Sloshball
1 x 20 Cleans @ 25kg Sloshball
3 x 5ES Cleans to shoulder @ 25kg Sloshball
1 x 5ES Step up to lunge @ 25kg Sloshball
1 x 10ES Step up to lunge @ 25kg Sloshball
1 x 15ES Step up to lunge @ 25kg Sloshball
1 x 10 Bench press @ 25kg Sloshball
1 x 30 Squats @ 25kg Sloshball



This thing may not be the most evil tool in Jeff's shed, but it sure as hell smashes the core on step up to lunges, plus it's a complete bitch to hold. For the record, I am the most evil tool in Jeff's shed. Arf arf arf.

I'm guessing the weight to be ~25kg, as it's allegedly a touch over half full of water, it may be a little more, but 25'll do for the records until we know for sure.

PMPW: 91kg

Saturday, 26 December 2009

26/12/2009

Mt Donna Buang - threepeat:
Once long ago, someone thought it would be a clever idea to drive to Warburton and do hill repeats of Mt Donna Buang, 3 repeats would give just over 100km and 3km vertical. Awesome, book me in for that, sounds grand. Well sometime more recently, let's call it "last Wednesday" someone decided that this weekend would be a rad time to do it, that's right, after a training camp to Bright. *sigh* Fine, lock me in.

On the way up on lap #1, I got a flat and watched BJ, Alex, Downie and Belly ride away. Fuck! I took my time to change it, ensuring there was nothing left in the tyre and set about changing my plan for the day to be "chase those bitches* down".

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Each lap there were random rabbits to chase, yet all the while I thought about the guys and took note of where they passed me going the other way. I took heart that it was getting closer and closer to the turn around points each leg.

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On my final lap i was feeling the hurt, my knee was a little off so I was working on different pedaling techniques to manage it. While scooting back on the saddle really nailed my hanstrings and glutes it actually seemed to cause more knee drama which I found odd. At Cement (Legs) Creek I saw Steve O'Brien hanging about, I waved and kept riding, soon after I became aware he was behind me somewhere so tried to keep clear, but he eventually chased me down with about 2km to go.

As for chasing down the guys, well I never did catch them, but they waited for me at the top of the last lap, and we raced down the hill. Downie was all over the road trying to stay clear, but despite sticking only to the left lane I was able to stick with him.

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Despite a healthy Christmas weight gain, I was really happy with how I climbed today. Sure I wasn't close to the sub 1:00 times that Alex kept up all day and Downie managed on a couple of laps, but I felt good on the bike, and believe the times to be solid.

Lap 1: 1:21.15 (up), 18.20 (down) - a wild guess is the flat took 10-15 minutes to repair.
Lap 2: 1:04.11 (up), 18.50 (down)
Lap 3: 1:04.37 (up), 16.07 (down)

D: 102.3km
A: 3,280m

PMPW: 94kg

* Please note I'm not upset they kept riding, but I felt the need to use derogatory language to make myself seem more important. Did it work?

Friday, 25 December 2009

25/12/2009

Lazy:
It's xmas, and I had a massive case of bed suck. I woke up with plenty of time to go riding with Cam, but couldn't muster the energy to get up.

Sorry Cam.

PMPW: 91kg

Thursday, 24 December 2009

24/12/2009

Tawonga Gap:
Everyone was all set to go for a MTB ride, but when Alex's middle ring turned out to be within a nanometre of death, he and I decided to go out on the road bikes again.

We only wanted a couple of hours, it turns out so did Cal Britten was up for just such a thing. I'll admit I was made slightly nervous by his choice of attire, but he claimed it's all he's got while he looks for a Euro contract.

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We headed up to the top of Tawonga, a nice steady pace that allowed Cal to talk normally with Alex. Me? Well I had enough breath for special comments.

As we rolled back down and then out towards Hotham for some extras, the weather started to change, a fitting sign for the end of a good training camp.

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D: 55.7km
A: 695m

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

23/12/2009

Buckland Valley:
We were all smashed today, who would have thunk it? We basically repeated Monday's trip up the Buckland Valley, though this time I had a flat that stopped me getting the full distance.

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I've had a bit a bit of knee soreness, but a ton of stretching, food, beer, sleep and general shit talking should hopefully see it right.

D: 32.4km
A: 240m

Tuesday, 22 December 2009

22/12/2009

Bright - Hotham - Falls - Tawonga - Bright: aka 3 peaks.
It's hard not to say this whole trip was about today. The longest kms, over the toughest terrain, a ride we'd been planning to do for pretty much bang on 12 months.

The forecast was for a pretty hot day, and when the rough maths suggested we'd need around 9 hours of ride time, plus extra for stoppages, logic dictated we start early (ok so 7:30 isn't massively early, but we're on holidays so it counts).

With jerseys stuffed to capacity with food we rolled out towards Harrietville and Hotham. There wasn't a huge amount of talk, everyone was a little nervous, not knowing exactly what to expect from the day, or to be more precise what to expect from their bodies.

From the very start of the Hotham climb we settled into our own rhythms, Andrew and Alex surged ahead, BJ with his 23t cassette (yes he is an idiot) ground away, while Jim and I spun together. By The Meg, Jim and I had caught up to BJ and decided to form a 3, at the tollbooths it was every man for himself.

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I had a half hearted crack at setting a decent speed down to the bottom of CRB, but fear about the rest of the day had me top out around 84km/h.

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At the top we regrouped, refilled water bottles and headed on to Omeo, everyone seemed to enjoy the descent, especially the final bit into Omeo. At the bottom of Hotham I tried to help Downie set a new personal max speed, sadly he missed my wheel and my leadout was for naught... well 94km/h isn't naught.

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I should mention on the kicker out of Cobungra I tried to hold Alex and Andrew's wheel(s), but failed about 1km from the end. Still I was feeling good about how I was climbing, sure I'm no 55kg whippet, but I felt I was holding my own.

We stopped in Omeo to refill bottles, fuel up the stomachs and generally take a couple of minutes off the saddle. We were approximately half way, turning back, though never a serious option, would mean a hard ride, but from here on it would not only be hard but be on road none of us had seen before. We'd seen the maps, we'd studied the profile, though everyone knew neither ever really tell the full story.

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The road from Bingo Munjie was awesome. I often fear that word is overused in society, but none other seems fit to describe it to you. The graphs tell me the road angled upwards, but it never felt it, we pulled long turns along the winding road that had everyone (bar Alex who had a bit of a hunger flat) exclaiming at just how great a day it was.

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At Anglers Rest we encountered the second Pick a Plank bridge of the day, the first had produced some nervous moments, the second produced a hole big enough to absorb my front wheel. The damage was relatively minor, a slight buckle to my wheel, a bruised hand and some red gum splinters driven through various parts of my body. Still it took the edge off the fun of the road.

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Soon after the rest of the fun drained away completely. We turned off the Omeo Hwy and up the back of Falls Creek into what I can only describe as a wall of pebble mix. Everyone dumped every gear they had, and yet we still suffered. Suddenly the pleasant sun that had watched us carve turns minutes earlier was trying to bake us into the bitumen. Patches of shade offered only fleeting relief despite our tectonic speeds.

This single lane road now stands as one of the hardest roads I've ridden on a bike. Sure there have been times when I've hurt as much, but never have I been riding as well, yet been treated with such disdain by tarmac. The profile graphs had described it as 7.7% for around 9km, the reality was far worse as short flat sections and a tiny descents brought the average down, but worse still they'd given us false hope that the climb was over, only to get around a corner and see yet another wall of black top waiting patiently for us to grind up it.

Despite the worry that the climb would never end, it did, and so did my sugar levels. With no opportunity to eat on the climb, I hit a nice big hunger flat hole. Luckily the top section of Falls was flat. We all cruised along, thankful that the temperature was 10-15 degrees cooler than the climb (37c vs 24c), I shovelled a couple of bars in and like magic found life returning to my legs 15 minutes later, just in time for the descent. Once again my breath was taken away by the beauty of the road we were riding on, winding it's way around the Rocky Valley Storage Lake.

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The descent off Falls is the the 2nd best thing about this ride, the 3rd is the road before Falls, the first is finishing the bloody thing, but the descent comes a bloody close second. I did my best to chase Andrew, while BJ did his best to chase me. Smooth road, open corners, and stupid average speeds had me grinning, overtaking cars and leaving them behind like they didn't have an engine had me laughing manically.

Back down into the Kiewa Valley the temperate was scorching, unbeknownst to me Alex hadn't had a heap of water at the top of Falls, so the fact we hadn't stopped to refill meant that by Mt beauty he was feeling spanked. We took our second major stop for the day, this time in a slightly less dignified manner, sprawled out on the ground in front of the super market.

Once we'd all drunk our fill and refilled our bottles, it was time to head to the last challenge of the day, Tawonga Gap. A short climb, but after over 200km and 2 mountains no one was quite sure how they'd cope.

Fuelled with full fat Coke I decided that I was going to try and chase down Downie. A few km into the climb I'd left Jim and BJ and joined him for the ride to the top. Around 3km to go I attacked hard, only to be dismayed to find Andrew firmly stuck to my wheel. I really wanted to get to the top ahead of him, but he seemed too strong. I backed off and recovered. 2km to go I accelerated, he stood and accelerated with me, trying to take the pace up even higher, the second he sat down I stood and kicked the pace again. It hurt, but when he swore (light heartedly) I knew he was hurting, so kept the pace up. Soon I had a gap, but I also had a problem.

It was 2km to go and I was hurting. I mashed at the pedals, all pretence of making them go smoothly around was thrown to the wind. Shoulders bobbing, hips rocking I tried to put every ounce of my being into getting to the top. The gap wasn't getting bigger. I stopped thinking about the top and started to worry about the rider behind me, and that's when the counter attack came, he flew up and around me, taking all my motivation with him. So close, yet so far.

The ride down Tawonga was fast and fun, but the areas of shade and light often made it hard to pick good lines, it didn't matter though, the ride was done, all that was left as to roll back to our cabin and stuff our faces with food.

So, in summary, it was a long day. A long day with lots of hills. The sweet, sweet descents and gorgeous views almost made the whole thing worth it, but not quite. Also, fuck you Pick A Plank bridges, your bruise inducing hard surface is preventing my right hand from finding a comfortable place on my bars.

Chickens eaten: 1

D: 251.2km
A: 4,725m

Monday, 21 December 2009

21/12/2009

Buckland Valley:
Today was designated a rest day, BJ and Jimmy had raced XC yesterday, Alex and I had done Buffalo, and Downie, well his activities are a little too adult, even for this blog. Needless to say, we all wanted a nice gentle effort before tomorrow's epic ride.

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We tootled to Porepunkah then turned up towards Buckland. It was a beautiful road that wound through the apple orchards, vineyards dotting the valley floor.

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We finished the afternoon off with some time in the Ovens River and a session of who can withstand the most time on the foam roller.

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D: 37.5km
A: 275m

Sunday, 20 December 2009

20/12/2000

Mt Buffalo
Got up early to drive up to Bright, the plan was to ride with Downie, his text message at 12 suggested he was otherwise detained.

So with Alex and I feeling a little abused from Jeff's unsure how well we'd fare.

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About halfway up Alex found his groove and held a bike or so length in front.

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The descent was a fucking blast, no monstrous speeds, but we barely dipped below 60km/h as we flicked in and out of the flowing corners.

D: 64.8km
A: 1,275m

PMPW: 91kg

Saturday, 19 December 2009

19/12/2009

Fatties:
Ok so it wasn't quite a fatties ride, for a start it's not Wednesday. The premise was to get a bunch of dudes who used to ride together on fatties, back together, for a ride, a bbq and some beers.

Starting from Ben's place in Eltham we did a loop of Han's then out to the Templestowe Hillclimb, and back home via a reverse loop of Han's.

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I don't understand what that sign means.


the main group going up the Templestowe climb, sadly you can't hear them all swear at the bottom as they first see it.


Mel cleaning it with ease.

The reverse loop was done with some vigour, and I'm happy where I was riding in the group, even before considering I still had sore legs from Jeff's.

D: 25.7km
A: 465m

PMPW: 90kg

Friday, 18 December 2009

18/12/2009

Rest:
In hindsight I should have rolled to/from work today, but I chose the car instead. My legs felt abused, but there's no sign of DOMS, hopefully this will mean they come good quicker.

A quick heads up that entries might not be published on the normal daily schedule next week. I'll be up in Bright with Jimmy, BJ, Alex and Downie riding some big hills for fun. This all being said, modern technology is a wondrous thing, and I might just get bored enough post ride(s) to write them from my phone.

PMPW: 90kg

Thursday, 17 December 2009

17/12/2009

6:00 NRR:
So at some time in the past, let's call it "last night", I had a couple of beers and was quite socially lubricated. At the time ("last night") beer seemed like a riotously good idea, and do you know what else sounded like a good idea? Telling people that I'd meet them for NRR 6ish hours later.

So, this morning I woke up, and despite feeling like arse was obligated to put on awesome socks and train. I hate socially lubricated me.

In other "things I promised to do while drunk" news, it seems I've told Jase Jackson that I want to do Baw Baw with him. I'm really really hate socially lubricated me.

As for NRR, I sat in, tried not to vomit, and basically begged for the hangover to miraculously disappear. It didn't.

D: 41.9km
A: 125m

Jeff's:
2 x 20 Deck Squats

3 x 1 Min ES @ 43kg Step up to lunge
1 x 1 Min @ 15kg MB Slams
2 x 1 Min @ 20kg MB Slams

3 x 1 Min ES @ 43kg Step ups
3 x 1 Min Waterbag hang cleans

3 x 1 Min @ 43kg Bulgarian split squats
2 x 1 Min @ 40kg Renegade Row and Pushup (2 x 20 kg)
1 x 1 Min @ 64kg Renegade Row and Pushup (2 x 32 kg)

The run down was 1 minute on, 20 seconds rest, move to the alternate exercise. For everything involving a box this meant 1 minute per side, the other exercises we worked in tandem with someone else so got a 1 minute break. There was a short break (1-2 minutes) between each lot of exercises (i.e. where I've spaced them out above).

Someone (not me for a change) got a bit smart about the row/push ups so we finished of with 32s, and in what is possibly the silver lining of my hangover, I didn't care. My brain was too smashed to care about any of it, leaving me to just get on with the task at hand.

The highlight was definitely the huge glow of endorphins I had on my way home. I almost felt semi human.

PMPW: 89kg

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

16/12/2009

Commute:
What a stinker! I'm glad I wasn't in a hurry, as riding in 38 degrees heat takes it out of me.

Here's a link to fatcyclist for Jase. The guy has a way with words that I admire (fatty not Jase).

D: 31.6km
A: 225m

PMPW: 90kg

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

15/12/2009

6:00 NRR
Not much to report, just sat in all morning feeling reasonable, able to go around riders who dropped wheels, but way too far back to play in the sprint.

D: 41.5km
A: 125m

Flat hill dirt crits:
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Bruce (with wheelbarrow) setting up.

So as something different, racing was in random teams, rock up, pay your cash and wait for your name to be pulled from a hat to see who you're going to race lap on lap off with. I was teamed with a Total Rush guy (Anthony? Andrew?), and was volunteered into the first lap.

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The first lap felt short, the first lap off felt long, from then on in the times seemed to be reversed. After a couple of cycles I figured I'd be smart and calculate roughly how many laps I'd need to do. I may have been distracted by the fact we were holding 2nd and totally forgot to divide the number by 2 (for the number of riders in our team). This did not help my mental state, nor was my apparent lack of any technical skills. I felt I was riding like a nufty.

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When 3 laps to go were called I was pleasantly surprised, then the surprise turned to concern when i found out just how close 3rd was. I presumed 3rd was Tim whom I had a good gap on, turns out 3rd was Justin Warnes and he was gaining fast. Into the singletrack on my last lap I could hear him behind me, the little shit had started the trash talk, so i did what any sane man would. I brake checked him into corners and moderated my pace in the tight singletrack so I could punch it through the open sections.

So, 2nd place earned me some new socks. Not only do they have an acceptable cuff length but they've got nekkid ladies on them as well. SCORE!

In hindsight it's not a bad result, I felt a little flat, but had forgotten about yesterday's massage which would have left me a bit leggy.

D: 8.1km
A: 140m

Commute:
Commuting on the MTB always makes me smile, the hum of the tyres, the desire to find things to hop and just the slightly slower pace you're forced to take.

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D: 35km
A: 300m

Chickens Eaten: 1/2

PMPW: 90kg

Monday, 14 December 2009

14/12/2009

Massage:
I used the voucher that the kind kids @ Jeff's provided me for my birthday, and went and visited yet another masseuse. After a week of rolling out my ITBs they weren't too bad, but oh my god did my hips hurt.

In what's what's likely just a side effect of riding with Eddie Wilson and Revolution coming up on Wednesday, I've had thoughts about becoming a pure trackie next year. Playing with big weights and riding around in circles all day..... ok maybe i'd still ride some MTB for giggles.

My knee issues seem to have coincided with a decrease in chickens eaten, in hindsight it seems obvious this is/was the issue.

Chickens eaten: 1/2

PMPW: 90kg

Sunday, 13 December 2009

13/12/2009

Rest:
In an attempt to stave of madness I rolled down to the SKCC crits and watched everyone race. Despite not threatening any effort I just had the sense that my muscles were ready to pump out some decent power. Sadly there's still some soreness in my knee that I'll continue to manage and work to fix.

The ITBs are starting to feel ok on the foam roller, but I've got some tightness in my hips to work out with some more stretching. We'll see what the massage tomorrow uncovers, odds on I'll be tight somewhere I never expected, maybe in the Spanish inquisition, no one expects the Spanish inquisition.

PMPW: 90kg

Saturday, 12 December 2009

12/12/2009

Rest:
I'm in the really awkward situation where I believe the decision I've made not to ride is the right one, but can't help but feeling like I'm taking the soft option.

No bike, no weights, just 4-8 hours of wondering what normal people do their day while I'm usually riding.

PMPW: 91kg

Friday, 11 December 2009

11/12/2009

Stretching:
A day of rest, a few sessions with the foam roller, a few with the stretch mat and as much sleep as I can get.

I've still got some discomfort in my left knee from last weekend. It's most likely (as I reason it) that I inflamed something, and need to give it some time to recover. In the past that meant taking a week or two off the bike, but back then I didn't quite care as much about my training. Contemplating taking time off the bike is frustrating, but being forced to take time off if it gets worse would be, well, worse.

I'll see how it feels in the morning and decide if I'll ride or not, I would like it to be in tip top shape for our trip up to Bright and the long days we have planned.

PMPW: 90kg

Thursday, 10 December 2009

10/12/2009

6:00 NRR:
Oh man, this was one of those mornings where the alarm goes off, you stare at it, hoping simply through force of your will it will be wrong. The alarm wasn't wrong, and it was goading me. "It's 5:00am, get out of bed you lazy fuck!". I tried begging with it, "....but I don't want to" It laughed, then called me fat. So just to spite it, I got up.

I sat in all the way down pulled a quick turn through Mentone, but receded back into the fold quickly as my aim was just get some kms in. By Black Rock I found I had to ride around people feeling the pace, I was feeling pretty comfortable.

I promised Eddie Wilson a lead out for the sprint, I moved up through Brighton, sat myself 3-4 from the front around Elwood, then as the first rider started to flag I pulled out and took the pace from around 53kmh to 58kmh. There was a few other riders on the road, but I figured a promise was a promise and kept the pace up, waiting for the sprint to come around me. The sprint never came, I'm still not sure if it was the pace or just the traffic (cycle and car) that stopped others from following my wheel.

D: 40.7km
A: 100m

Commute:
I made a conscious decision to ride in to work, the forecast was for a fine morning but turning increasingly shit as the day went on. Once at work on the bike I would be forced to ride, rain or shine, a good technique for getting the kms in.

Around 2pm when it was pissing down outside I began to realise that early morning me was a jerk and that I didn't like him or his lack of consulting late in the day me when making such my decisions.

Soaked on the ways to Jeffs, drenched on the way home. I hate you early morning me!

D: 44.9km
A: 365m

Jeff's:
2 x 20 Deck Squats
3 x 2.5 Min ES @ 43kg Step up to lunge
3 x 2.5 Min @ 43kg Alternating step ups
3 x 1.5 Min @ 43kg Bulgarian split squats
1 x 30 @ 43kg Jumping squats

Everything bar the jumping squats were done for time tonight, with the same amount of time as rest.

The step up lunges smashed my lower back and I stopped with ~ 20 seconds to go on the first set. The next set(s) knowing roughly how many I could do in the time I paced myself a bit better.

Both alternating step ups and split lunges I got better the more sets we did.

PMPW: 90kg

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

9/12/2009

Melbourne - Mordialloc - Melbourne:
Took the day off work to rest and recover. My knees were telling me they needed an easy day and some work on the foam roller.

After a coffee I took the roadie out for a gentle roll down to Mordi and back. It was a bloody gorgeous day to be on the bike, a slight northerly, but blue sky everywhere. Perfect for meditating on issues and generally de-stressing.

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I did my best not to act like a complete floozy when around Elwood I was passed by a young fellow.

Interesting to note that he was riding a (masked) Pinarello Dogma rather than his normal Scott Addict. Sadly we wont be seeing him race track next week @ revolution.... it's ok once drunk I'll happily yell at anyone (even a kiwi).

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I love the idea of hanging out with international cyclists, but sometimes the rality is I just end up giggling like a school girl. So, Chris Hoy, I'd like to apologise in advance, if I touch your legs in an inappropriate manner when we finally meet, it's out of man love, not man-man love.

D: 51.0km
A: 205m

PMPW: 90kg

8/12/2009

Kinglake:
Sitting at work watching the rain come in for hour after hour, I was worried that the Mario Christmas Ride would be called off. Thankfully it wasn't as it turned out to be a fair giggle.

We had a pretty big group, including a heap of guys I hadn't seen on a bike, let alone a mountain bike for many many moons.

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Most trails hooked up well, but there were other sections with a bit more clay in the soil where I questioned my stance on not complaining about tyre choice.

The highlights for me (other than the post ride burgers and beer) was getting up the long climbs in 2nd, just behind Alex Randall. I'm sure not everyone was killing themselves like I was, but I'll take it as a win. Notable mentions were the fact I kept it upright, and a narrow loss to Jason Jackson in the final sprint.

Sadly my cameras abilities in low light are limited, so despite taking 20+ photos, I'm left with only the one to show you. Next time you'll just have to come along and see for yourself. :)

D: 33.1km
A: 890m

PMPW: 90kg

Monday, 7 December 2009

7/12/2009

Commute:
Legs felt very flat today. It was a fight to ignore all the signals I was getting and get on the bike to roll them out.

I found it odd that I have bruising on my right arm from the KB (forewarm and shoulder) but not my left. I find it odd because my right side has much better technique for cleans and snatches than my left.

Yesterday I thought I would do NRR tomorrow (Tuesday) for the extra kms, but with the way everything is feeling just now, I think I'd be better served by getting additional sleep.

I sometimes find it hard to remember. I don't get faster on the bike, I get faster in bed. No wait, I didn't mean it that way. Oh god! I swear this is the first time it's happened. Can we just cuddle now?

D: 31.6km
A: 210m

PMPW: 91kg

6/12/2009

Anakie:
Met with Dave Rusden and Klaus at the Anakie General Store for a ~65k ride before the BBQ at Darren Baum's place.

The route cruised along the flat then dipped in and out of a steep valley. My legs felt flat, but were obviously not as bad as Klaus, we caught him zig zagging up one of the final climbs. :)

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D: 73.9km
A: 690m

Jeff's:
2 x 20 Deck Squats
4 x 2 Minutes @ 24kg KB Clean and Jerk Long Cycle
2 x 2 Minutes @ 24kg KB Snatch
4 x 2 Minutes @ 24kg KB 1 legged dead lift
4 x 2 Minutes @ 24kg KB Clean
1 x 2 Minutes @ 24kg KB Russian Twist
1 x 2 Minutes @ 28kg KB Russian Twists

Not surprisingly I had no snap in the legs.

A friend put this up on facebook, it's quite arty and motivional-esque, but it's the box jump(s) about half way through that caught my eye.



PMPW: 90kg

Saturday, 5 December 2009

5/12/2009

Melbourne - Kinglake - Melbourne:
The route was the zig zag one out to Kinglake, then a big loop out towards Yea, through Flowerdale and back through Kinglake West.

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Well the plan was to just get some tempo ks in, in fact the plan wasn't the ride as described above, we'd discussed going down to Yarra Glen, but that's a matter for another day.

All was good on the tempo front until Church Rd, Downie pushed the pace and I may possibly have responded and taken it a little bit further. I may have possibly then set a fast tempo on the KL climb, and possibly TT'd the entire thing to see what time I could achieve (19:17 to the roundabout).

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So anyway, in Kinglake, legs still a little DOMSy, a little spent from the ride up, we embarked on what became a mind numbingly long back country loop. By the time we got back to Kinglake again we'd added an extra 60ish Kms to get us to 150km for the day, and we still needed to get home. We were all feeling smashed, and despite gorging ourselves at the bakery energy levels did not return until long after the ride was done.

This sign basically summed up the mood (click it to see it bigger).

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Once Jim pulled off at Kangaroo Ground, Downie and I played games (again), I'm happy I was able to mostly hold my own, taking a few wins, but he held me out by about a wheel on the final spring to the Ivanhoe/Heidelberg Red Rooster.

So despite it being a ridiculously long day on the bike we did have a few moments. Downie almost crashing into a roo (pics didn't come out), busting Mario doing secret training, and a mailbox that left us giggling.

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D: 208.4km
A: 2910m

Beers drunk: 2
Chocolate eaten: 250g
Pasta eaten: 645g
Icecream eaten: 1L

PMPW: 90kg

Friday, 4 December 2009

4/12/2009

Rest:
I needed the car to get some things done, so today became a complete rest day.

A little tightening in the adductors and the glutes, I should be ok to ride tomorrow, but I imagine the power will be down slightly.

PMPW: 89kg

Thursday, 3 December 2009

3/12/2009

Commute:
Just a quick note to say that Steve did a cool write up of the Kona 24 on the Baum Blog, worth a read, if only for his ridiculous prose.

I woke up for NRR this morning, but decided to roll over and go back to sleep instead of heading out. I think it's time to re-declare my goals publicly. Doing so helps me ensure I don't back down, as doing the hard yards to achieve it is somehow easier than telling everyone I failed.

So here goes.... I want to finish in the top 30 males at the 2010 Otway Odyssey. I believe this will require cutting around half an hour off last years time. Ideally I'd like to beat Jim, I know it's his focus for this year. I know by saying that last bit here he will read it, and likely train harder as a result.

I'm continuing to work on pedal technique for my easy rides (commutes), but today I also mused about body positioning on a bike. The relationships between bodies and bikes fascinates the crap out of me, specifically road bikes. Allowing for pedalling efficiency, minimising wind resistance, while accounting for long distance comfort all while dealing with the idiosyncrasies of peoples bodies.... I feel like I could spend a life learning about it, and still not know everything.

Did a lap of the Boulevard with Justin for giggles. It's not more kms, but it is more vertical. Plus it's nice to ride through parkland.

D: 43.7km
A: 430m

Jeff's:
2 x 20 Deck Squats
3 x 20ES @ 43kg Step up to lunge
1 x 40ES @ 43kg Explosive Step ups
1 x 30ES @ 43kg Explosive Step ups
1 x 20ES @ 43kg Explosive Step ups
3 x 15ES @ 43kg Bulgarian split lunges
1 x 50 @ 40kg 2 arm KB Cleans

The step ups to lunges were tiring, but the explosive step ups did me in both physically and mentally. The last rep of each set was barely a shuffle of the feet at the top.

Jeff prescribed 2 sets of KB cleans, but for the second time in a week I cracked and refused to do more. The first set had some freaking ugly technique, and the rack catch landed beautifully on both my new grazes, still I should have been able to do the work, especially given the focus rant I wrote earlier (above) today.

PMPW: 89kg

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

2/12/2009

Commute:
D: 14.2km
A: 140m

Fatties:
A small bunch for a roll in towards the city. It's really nice to be getting some riding done after work, and for it still to be light.

"What time was that?" I hear you ask.

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It's time for the gun show to crash into a tree and take a heap of bark off.

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Choma and Scott on the Scott Giant attacked off the front on most bits of trail, and despite feeling not too bad physically, I had no desire to go chasing them. I practised monos, tried to get airborn as often as possible and generally worked on getting my tyres hooked up. I knew things were going ok when I rode with my tyre on the edge of a rocky precipice for 5-10m, without that overbalancing/overcompensating feeling one normally gets.

Juan seemed to be struggling a little with the pace, so I dropped back a few times to pace him back on.

D: 45.4km
A: 505m

PMPW: 90kg

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

1/12/2009

Commute:
The legs felt a little reluctant today, no soreness, but just a general malaise. I took the nice weather as an opportunity to cruise to and from work on the road bike, working on pedal technique.

A slight detour on the way extended gave me a few extra kms to stretch out everything and really focus on getting the foot through the bottom and back side of the pedal stroke. I've spent a heap of time working on power, but not a lot on efficiency. I think there might be some "easy" gains to be made there.

I'm a little surprised my weights up for the second day in a row, but really shouldn't be. I've stuffed myself silly since the race, odds on it'll be back down to 89-90 in the next few days.

D: 35.7km
A: 265m

PMPW: 92kg

30/11/2009

Rest:
I intended to stretch today, but after a long day in the office food and sleep seemed more important.

Steve has a few photos uploaded, the one below is my favourite, Gu's shoved up my right short leg, my number plate shoved up the left.



PMPW: 91kg