Thursday, 31 December 2015

31/12/2015

Bak Pocket / NRR:
I'm not going to suggest it couldn't be a fashion, but I think it was more likely a misheard one. I think the look Youngie had heard about and was attempting to imitate was bee stung lips, instead he went with bee stung hips (actually his knee, but that's far less rhyming).

Drew Ginn and I stopped with him until the requests to suck the venom out started coming, then we switched to pulling turns to get back to the Bak Pocket boys. That leads to another slight miss-communication. Drew obviously didn't get the memo that time off the bike should translate to less ability to put everyone in the gutter to suffer.



Not only was he guttering the big lads of the Bak Pocket ride, but we turned at Mordi and combined forces with northy... and he gave all them a touch up too.

Strava link.

D: 65.2km
A: 200m

Commute:

D: 13.9km
A: 56m

PMPW: 87kg

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

30/12/2015

Commute:
I intended to get a couple of sneaky laps of Albert Park lake in before work, but when I saw Dunny on a cross road, I swung a hard turn and ended up rolling to Slack rock instead.

D: 59.5km
A: 273m

PMPW: 87kg

Tuesday, 29 December 2015

29/12/2015

Ricktastic Tuesday:
I've stared at the below photo for far longer than most heterosexual males would stare at a photo of lycra clad butts.



I've looked to see if there's a clue as to where I cam make aerodynamic gains for the very (very very) important rolling races that occur. You see, despite my arse being in front here, by the time we reach where the truck is shown to be, young Rick has not only drawn level, but edged ahead.

I joke about wind tunnel testing, but maybe it should be a real thing, after all I've taken time to learn the TT shrug, and I don my glasses to smooth out airflow over my very unaero eye sockets.

Am I too tucked? Sitting on the top tube is gauche, but maybe it needs to occur. Perhaps I need to finally overcome my fear of penile damage and master the superman.

Oh yeah, we totally rode up some hills this morning too.

Strava link.

D: 54.7km
A: 689m

Commute:

D: 13.8km
A: 43m

PMPW: 87kg

Monday, 28 December 2015

28/12/2015

St Kilda East - Kars - Baden Powel - Canadian bay - Two bays - St Kilda East:
The question of whether I'd hit any part of the Wednesday long loop hard this morning, was first answered when Adam hit it at the bottom of Canadian Bay rd. I couldn't resist, I couldn't let him get a lead, to get away... so I did what I always do, I marked the shit out out of it.

Before we reached the false flat, maybe about half way up the first ramp, I was once again faced with the question. Adam had blown, and I was clear off the front of everyone. At this juncture I decided to push on to the false flat where I re-assessed the question.

One one hand, it was a bonus day of kms after a period of being slightly behind the recovery curve. In other words, pain wasn't necessary. On the other hand, pew pew pew, attack attack, more!

I eased at the false flat, I could hear someone having a go. I looked over my shoulder and found Leigh giving a solo bridging a crack, so I decided to wait. I pulled through the false flat, then attacked him on the kicker to the top. At this point the question was not if I should hurt, I'd pretty much decided I was, but how best to go about it.

So I waited for Leigh, and asked if he was keen to set a time up Two bays. My intention was to give him the best sit, to keep him on my wheel for as long as possible and thus have a witness to my effort or lack there of.

450W was my mark, and I set about putting it out only to find Turner had descended hard to make the catch. No sooner had he announced his presence at the back, then Leigh announced his at the front, driving the pace up a bit. I took a short sit, then got back to the front to preserve his legs. It was at this point it stopped being about me, and became about Mr Aitken, because he soon sounded like an emphysematous steam train. I kept the pace, he held the wheel, and I gained a lot of respect for how deep he was willing to dig.

Strava tells me Leigh PB'd the climb, a text told me that he'd done so by 30 seconds. Nice!

As for me, I was within 3 seconds of my best, and did more of the work to achieve it. Maybe that means I could go even quicker sometime soon.



Strava link.

D: 103.6km
A: 584m

PMPW: 88kg

Sunday, 27 December 2015

27/12/2015

St Kilda East - Broad Gully - Mine - Christian - Flat Rock - Carters - St Kilda East:
I was proud of the sock/jersey combination I had one today, so proud I really didn't want to put on a gillet, and I've put my arm warmers away for a few months. It's possible I should have eaten some of that price, as the temp dropped to 8°C at Nutfield, and I'm not sure if goose bumps provide any aero advantage.

The cold air was good for one thing though, it made me realise how much better I felt than yesterday. In fact I felt a lot better than I had all week, my legs went around in circles. When I decided it was time for everyone to taste pain, everyone got a french loaf.

Strava link.

D: 108.2km
A: 1,770m

PMPW: 87kg

Saturday, 26 December 2015

26/12/2015

Rest/Stretching:
I don't know what hit me today, but I felt like arse. It might have been the breakfast of berries, cream, waffles and reese's peanut butter cups that sent me into a voyage complete with dizzying sugar highs and death defying lows... if so, that'd be the lowest sugar low I've ever had.

Anyway, I stretched a bit, and napped a bit, and generally didn't do anything physical because it was raining, and because I felt about as good as sun warmed vomit smells.

PMPW: 89kg

Friday, 25 December 2015

25/12/2015

NRR:
I love a roll on christmas morning, almost as much as I love a roll stuffed with christmas day leftovers on boxing day.

Anyway, there's a lot of myths and stories about christmas time, and normally being an aethiest I don't buy into them... but today during a futile search for an open cafe, I witnessed an honest to god christmas miracle. Revolver was closed!

Strava link.

D: 47.6km
A: 165m

PMPW: 87kg

Thursday, 24 December 2015

24/12/2015

NRR:
Some days you're the hammer, and some days you're sitting in the bunch wondering why it's so hard, and who the hell is pulling turns at 54km/h. I wasn't the hammer.

Strava link.

D: 44.3km
A: 157m

PMPW: 87kg

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

23/12/2015

Commute:
I thought it best to take it easy today, the legs were flat and heavy yesterday and I had a general tiredness hanging over me from all the poor sleeps the hot weather last week brought.

Instead of hitting some more hills with Rick and Wilko, or Jase and Dusty, I cruised along the beach, spinning the legs through while the sun warmed my back. To use a favourite of Straussy, it was "not shit".

D: 33.7km
A: 123m

PMPW: 87kg

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

22/12/2015

Ricktastic Tuesday:
How sweet the morning air is! See how that one little cloud floats like a pink feather from some gigantic flamingo. Now the red rim of the sun pushes itself over the London Dandenong cloud-bank. It shines on a good many folk ponies, but on none, I dare bet, who are on a stranger errand than you and I. How small we feel with our petty ambitions and strivings in the presence of the great elemental forces of Nature Horvart!

Strava link.

D: 54.5km
A: 740m

Commute:

D: 12.8km
A: 55m

PMPW: 87kg

Monday, 21 December 2015

21/12/2015

Commute:
Here's a few moments (sped up 1.25x) from De Luca's Christmas Cross from the other week. The SD card must have filled up, or the whole thing timed out, because I had nothing of the wall of dirt between Two and Canadian Bays.



D: 27.3km
A: 147m

PMPW: 88kg

Sunday, 20 December 2015

20/12/2015

SKCC Crit Champs:
I did some things wrong, and I did some things right, but I'm pretty bloody happy where I ended up.

I wasn't super keen on racing today, I only put in an entry on Friday, but the forecast gave me pause. I woke up and after an espresso over ice I checked SKCC's facebook and twitter pages. I was hoping it would be called off, that someone would say "It's probably for the best we postpone it.", but no one did.

So I rolled down, and made a great choice, I stopped at 7/11 and bought a pair of pantyhose. No, wait! I also bought a 5kg bag of ice, used it to ensure my bottles were as cold as could be, and dumped more into said stockings to drape around my neck. 20 minutes in and I was still feeling cool despite the 37°C temp, I was so happy about that decision, that I might have been a touch complacent. Moves had been going, but everything was either being fried by the wind, chased down, or both. I figured we were set for a lovely 50 minuted trundle around, then a kick for the line.

Instead, a few guys went up the road, then a few more, then some more and Shit! the break was looking solid while the bunch was looking done. I had two boys in the move, but I really really wanted to have a shot at the win today. Probably not the best team mentality, and the rolling turns with a couple of others was definitely not the best team behaviour. Thankfully Jase Nevins came rocking past and I jumped on while he pulled us clear. Knowing I wasn't dragging the bunch closer to my team mates was helpful, but to be fair... I wasn't actually sure Jase and I were getting any closer. We sat up a little, giving up some hard fought for ground, to let a couple of other boys get on. The extra legs were welcome, but the break was almost out of sight on the main straight. I wasn't convinced it was coming back.

Instead of worrying about that, I just worked on my turns. I wanted to hold them at 450W, though they were often sitting at 500. The ice was well gone by now, and I was slowly making my way through the bottles of warming water. Thankfully a massive mental boost came, Raphael Freinstein had pulled the pin from the break. If that name doesn't ring a bell, he was the dude that absolutely pantsed my effort at the 2014 SKCC World Champs. I told the others that the break had just lost a big engine, and started holding slightly longer turns.

With scant minutes left in the race 3 of us made contact with the break. I rolled a couple of turns, using it as a chance to suss out who had on black/orange numbers (eligible for the masters win), and who had a black/white one (just eligible for elite). "Gouldy from O2 might be an issue, but he seems tired", I thought. "That TKM dude (Nick)... can he sprint? have you seen him sprint at Noize? I think he can sprint... he's a threat.". I figured I was a fair shot at the masters title. Shannon Johnson was going to do bad things to the sprint, I was as confident of that as I was about myself.

Lui gave me a wheel to sit on, but he punctured with 2 laps to go. I marked a move or two, but after we lapped the main field the pace slowly dropped. No one wanted to flinch, no one wanted to drag anyone with them, I certainly didn't. Gouldy hit it out of corner 2/3, and I jammed myself on his wheel. He knew he was marked, and slowed, and slowed and slowed, and "Shit, this is too slow, I have to lay off his wheel, but he's slowing too much! Aaaaargh FUCK IT, IT'S TIME! I had a foot of space to his wheel and I ran at it and then stepped out into the head wind. We were still on the sweeper, there was a short straight, a 90° turn, and then a tailwind run to the line. I hoped I'd caught SJ off guard, but a tiny peek under the arm said he'd found me. I dove into the corner and had one thought. "Fight to the line!

SJ kicked past soon after the corner, he had the elite win, but I wanted the masters title. "Stay low, keep kicking, click another gear". I could feel someone... no it was... a presence, a mass, an abstract of a man, and they were coming up my left. I kept driving hard out of the saddle, I had no road elevation to use, but I was on the smooth tarmac on the far right. I threw hard for the line, and was mostly confident I'd held them off.

It was shortly after the elite podium that I found out/realised SJ is a masters rider too. He'd been wearing the black/white #1 dossard of last year's elite champ.

I'm pretty bloody happy, and only the pain of a post race slurpee included icecream headache could take the smile off my face... and that was only temporary... until the next one.

Strava link.
D: 56.7km
A: 98m

PMPW: 86kg

Saturday, 19 December 2015

19/12/2015

Hell Ride:
It's not every day I see a move by a national champ and think "I might ride over there and keep them company". Today I did, Joe Cooper, resplendent in his Kiwi kit hit Olivers hill hard, I figured I'd abandon the safety of the bunch, and go keep him company. A few moments later, in a moment that topped the surrealness, we rode past Baden Cooke. Sure it's likely Joe's offy, and Baden has hung up his professional racing boots, but if the ride had stopped then and there, I would have held that moment dear for at least a few more months.

It didn't end there, a short while later I decided that no one else was going to be capable of chasing down Simon Clarke and Pat Lane, so I better give it a go. I didn't make it, Pat is fucking flying right now, and he hit it hard. It was the same attack as a few weeks back, but launched from the exit of Baden Powell, with the confidence of a man who was going to ride it all the way to the line.

I'm struggling to write why those two moments mean so much, so much so that I started this paragraph several times before these words were left on the screen. I suppose it's that I know there's a clear class difference between these guys and me, but right now, with a good chunk of fitness under my belt (them lacking some), and some efforts that suit me, I get to glimpse at their world and to feel part of it.

The time spent talking crap with mates over coffee, smoothies and the water jug I spilled all over my lap... well that's bloody ace too.

Strava link.

D: 100.0km
A: 374m

PMPW: 88kg

Friday, 18 December 2015

18/12/2015

CX Shenanigans:
To quote Billy Birmingham... "Typical stinking fucking hot day here in Bombay." Shit house for sleeping, but pretty bloody nice to ride in!

I think the tweaks I've made to my setup/fit have helped too, as after a couple of warm up trails I started to see lines better, floating bunny hops over obstacles and landing (mostly) smoothly the little down ramps my brain was highlighting. Like the chicken and the egg, I can't quite figure out which came first, or which is more important, but it felt good.

Strava link.

D: 29.6km
A: 386m

Commute:
During the day, I thought about the old saying "slow is smooth, and smooth is fast", and somewhere an addendum was added. "...but loose is fun!"

That permeated into my brain, and the gravel trail to the side of Canterbury road saw me drifting and grinning. Though maybe the grin was because of how absurd I felt with an avocado bulging out of my jersey pocket.

D: 13.7km
A: 60m

PMPW: 87kg

Thursday, 17 December 2015

17/12/2015

Commute:
I didn't think much on my commute home because it was so hot you could fry an egg in my underpants bibs. On the way to work, and at work, I did get a little bit o'thinkin time. I thought about ye olde Xmas Hell ride on Saturday and ze SKCC crit champs this Sunday.

It's going to be hot as hell on Saturday,  and I'm not jumping out of my skin for the SKCC champs, despite being in similar form to a couple of years ago when I last had a crack.

I think I'll roll the helly, eat way too many icypoles, and see how I feel.

D: 25.2km
A: 127m

PMPW: 88kg

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

16/12/2015

Belgie:
Wooo baby that was fun, and if not for someone doing something along the boulevard that affects cyclists (and for the first time me), it could have been even more fun. That's about as much air time as I'm giving the person and the issue though, because the first rule of the internet is, don't feed the troll.

Being the xmas edition of the Belgie, we rolled out 10 minutes early, I had still managed to squeez in a coffee though, so was confident I was going to inflict some damage. When we rolled out, that confidence took a beating as roadies set hard tempo up the boulevard. "Screw it", I thought and hit the cobbled laneway hard, looking back at the end to the satisfying sight of a shattered bunch.

That action and counter action kind of describes the ride as a whole. There were mostly road bikes in the bunch, and they were making good use of the paved sections to try and soften up the knobby tyres. The cross riders were countering on the loose surfaces to try and take the edge off the roadies legs. It was hard, it was challenging, it was the sort of thing that though everyone is hitting with all they've got, they're doing it with a grin that threatens to split their face in two.

I suppose this is the bit where I admit I attacked one too many times, or to acknowledge the ferocity of a counter attack put on the the slick tyred crew. On the bike path run into the guide dogs I missed the wheel, and despite chasing at 47km/h, never caught back to it (until the stairs when we all had a laugh). Chapeau roadies, chapeau.

Strava link.

D: 57.0km
A: 570m

Commute:

D: 12.5km
A: 55m

PMPW: 86kg

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

15/12/2015

Ricktastic Tuesday:
Bing joined Ricky and I for the roll this morning, and it went pretty much how I would have predicted it. I got nervous and half wheeled/attacked everything, Mick responded to it all, and Rick stoically got the job done.

Hitting the ramp of Parker st, I decided to give it a nudge, I'd done up my shoes and figured it was a good chance to see what time I could set up the double digit gradients. The strava KOM was nice, but what I didn't expect was some power PBs. I held on to 1,000W for longer that I've done before (40sec), but at the time I distinctly remember consciously shutting it down, and my body declaring it was good for a few seconds more.

That wasn't the most important part of the ride though, that honour has always been, and will always be, where to go for coffee afterwards.

Strava link.

D: 47.6km
A: 637m

Commute:

D: 12.7km
A: 46m

PMPW: 88kg

Monday, 14 December 2015

14/12/2015

Commute:
Those of you following along with my movember adventures last month would be aware that my facial hair is not best described as thick and bushy, so it was to some surprise that I found a single dark hair below my right nostril. It was slightly less surprising realising that it was just a splinter, left lodged there from sometime yesterday. Without concrete proof I don't want to point fingers at a certain Patterson river tree... but that jerk might have a date with some secateurs.

D: 27.9km
A: 136m

PMPW: 87kg

Sunday, 13 December 2015

13/12/2015

Chriscross:
If I had $5 for every time today that I thought "I have no idea where I am", I'd almost have enough to cover the cost of the cx tubes/CO2 canisters the bunch went through. The sheer number trails and paths heading down past Frankston from Patto river was surprising, almost as surprising as the branch I copped to the mouth early on. I ducked under the tree I thought the call of "heads" was about, only to suddenly feel my lips becoming more firmly acquainted with my teeth by what I can only assume was a branch flicking back after the rider in front.

Face claret aside, I had a bunch of fun on the sandy trails. Big drifts of powdery silica would often appear out of nowhere. You'd be mid pack, following wheels, having a chat, and suddenly back wheels were weaving more than an 17th century English serf, and that was just the flat or uphill sections. One chute of single track held more drift action than an Toyota AE86. Half way down, having just cleared the series of 3 drops, the rider in front decided to have a little nap. Braking wasn't an option, turning? I don't think i could do that... bunny hop? hahahaha.

Anyway, I've got many GB of GoPro footage to get through at some stage, and a front tyre to whack sealant into before the Xmas Belgie on Wednesday morning.

Strava link.

D: 59.3km
A: 547m

PMPW: 86kg

Saturday, 12 December 2015

12/12/2015

Hell Ride:
Fair play summer, you lulled me into a false sense of warmth, then hit me with sub 10°C temperatures when I'd put away my gloves for the year. Not once before leaving home did I consider arm warmers might be desirable, let alone necessary. Fair play, you got me!

Some time on the way down to Frankston, I rolled up next to Mitch Docker, nodded, smiled and asked what he was up to. I meant in general terms, but his answer was specific to today. He was getting some speed work before the super crit (it's tomorrow). I laughed and rolled a few turns, not because I too wanted some 'speed work', but more that it was better than ending up blown into the gutter and left to grovel.

I had some fun on the hills, but the highlight for me was being back home with a couple of coffees in my belly by 10am. Riding with pros, attacking mates, and general high speed tom foolery is great, but getting to put your feet up and watch endless fishing shows with 100km already in the bank is, to quote an ad, priceless.

Strava link.

D: 100.8km
A: 408m

PMPW: 86kg

Friday, 11 December 2015

11/12/2015

CX Shenanigans:


Strava link.

D: 32.7km
A: 374m

Commute:

D: 13.2km
A: 62m

PMPW: 87kg

Thursday, 10 December 2015

10/12/2015

Commute:
I saw a photon checking in at Tullamarine, the clerk asked if he had any luggage, to which he replied “No, I’m travelling light.

D: 27.2km
A: 140m

PMPW: 87kg

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

9/12/2015

Yarra Trails Belgie:
What started as a small group of 4 for a regular Belgie, ended up just being Bing and I ducking into every bit of Yarra trails single track we could spy.

The little shit is fast. At one point I found myself reciting an old mantra, hoping it'd help me ease back up to his wheel.

"Slow is smooth, smooth is fast."

It lasted about three repetitions before my lizard brain took over and demanded I start mashing on the pedals constantly. Obviously that resulted in classic roadie on dirt lines, and a pedal catching an obscured log, sending my opposing foot's toes into the end of my shoe and my gentlemanly region perilously close to my stem.

I obviously need more dirt time... anyone for CX Friday?

Strava link.

D: 57.4km
A: 514m

Commute:

D: 13.1km
A: 74m

PMPW: 86kg

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

8/12/2015

Ricktastic Tuesday:
A message from Rick arrived at 5:18am. "I'm kind of ignoring the radar. It's warm". It's what took me thoughts about going back to bed, and rolling out the door for a good session and a solid chat.

Friendships are formed on shared experiences, and while today wasn't an epic battle together against the elements, lightning flashing bright enough to illuminate the inside of nostrils certainly took it to a step above a regular two up halfwheelathon.

Strava link.

D: 53.2km
A: 632m

Commute:
I had more flats on my way home from work tonight, than I've had in the past six months combined. So what started as plenty of time, and a tailwind, turned into me being far far later than normal, battling a headwind.

It was a ride I'd rather soon forget, but at the end I asked myself if I still liked bikes. I do... but I might take out the CX bike instead of the roadie tomorrow... just to be sure.

D: 13.2km
A: 65m

PMPW: 86kg

Monday, 7 December 2015

7/12/2015

Commute:
What do you get when you cross a joke with a rhetorical question?

D: 26.8km
A: 133m

PMPW: 88kg

Sunday, 6 December 2015

6/12/2015

Rest:
I probably could have snuck a ride in somewhere today, maybe just a much needed session working on my FTP, but I'm mindful of my recovery right now.

For a start I'm feeling tired, and secondly my weight is slowly creeping back up, which could be signs I need a few days or maybe a week of easing back.

I did get out the old massage stick and start the slow process of loosening off the piano wires that are my calves right now.

PMPW: 87kg

Saturday, 5 December 2015

5/12/2015

Hell Ride:
There were a few moments that weren't awesome, like the dog that ran across the road mid bunch as we descended at 75km/h off Olivers Hill, or the car that thought my arse needed to be polished with his wing mirror. As shit as they were, they were outshone by the rad moments.

Like, sitting pretty on James Cummings wheel as he whacked Hopes Rise, I turned to check the damage as we crested the top and saw that 3 of us had gone well clear. I suggested we carry on, but Jimmy didn't want a bar of it. The attack had been all he had, and he was actually worried I'd tear him apart on the next hills. A bit later I had a chat to Jez Hunt. Bensley, and more importantly to Jez, Ray Forbes had gone off the front. He asked if I'd chase it down.

Two moments, two good hard efforts, but more than that, two moments where guys I respect gave some to my legs/fitness/me. One who'll race his first elite road nationals this year (and I imagine finish with the much diminished bunch), the other who won both the UK and Aus races (the Aus title went to Jamie Drew, the first Aussie finisher).

Strava link.

D: 100.3km
A: 376m

PMPW: 87kg

Friday, 4 December 2015

4/12/2015

Commute:
Some of my mates argue that there's no hipsters south side, but that's not true! Just today I saw one burn his tongue. He drank his coffee before it was cool.

D: 27.9km
A: 147m

PMPW: 87kg

Thursday, 3 December 2015

3/12/2015

6am NRR:
Stood up twice in one week by Youngie, but unlike Tuesday there was no spin in my legs. There was no spin, and there was no oomph. Maybe I should have stayed in bed, but what's done is done, I'll just put an extra coffee in my face and get some extra shut eye tonight.

Strava link.

D: 44.0km
A: 143m

Commute:

D: 25.2km
A: 103m

PMPW: 87kg

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

2/12/2015

Commute:

D: 25.2km
A: 113m

St Kilda East - HCC Crits - St Kilda East:
I felt tired today, at work I just wanted to curl up and have a nap, but I figured I'd shelled out my entry fee already, so should get the training done. Standing around pre-race I joked that being tired meant I was either flying, or in trouble... honestly, I thought I was in trouble, there was not Brendan Canty, but it was a small bunch and that generally means agressive racing.

So I started off with no expectations, floated around the front, then the back, then back around the front. A break stayed up the road for a while so I eventually decided to help chase it, but it came back after I'd only done one. I'm not trying to claim I dragged them back either, just sharing the relief that I didn't have to put in multiple times.

Anyway, after a while I realised I wasn't hurting. Sure I was still giving up a wheel length every time through the corner. Sure that frustrated me because I felt like I was pushing in at the same speed, and on the same lines as anyone else... but I had that wheel length covered. I assumed it was because everyone else was holding back.

It wasn't until some late attacks came, and I quickly covered off gaps or jumped onto wheels that I finally twigged that maybe I was in half decent shape, but by this stage AJ was up the road with Business Wilkie, at best I was racing Troy Clarke and Pat Drapac for 3rd. Then Wilkie came back, and AJ wasn't too far away. A guy jumped up the right of the hill, and I was straight on him... but everyone was on me. We got the 3 lap sign and a couple more went, I waited, I didn't want to go alone, but we were running out of time, so on 2 laps I went, and drew out Tom Christie. I asked him to come through, then launched off him down the bottom straight. I caught a couple who were trying to bridge, and went straight through. Up the climb, just AJ and Warrack ahead of me and I was catching. Down the hill and I could see them thinking about tactics, I glanced under my arm, and didn't see the bunch, but couldn't risk slowing, I went past them, hoping they were too tired to get on.

Into the last corner, I am the first rider on the final lap, and I'll be honest I had thoughts of the win. I took the corner conservatively, if anyone was on my wheel they'll have to slow to my pace, and I'm confident that I can push hard up the hill. AJ slips around me before the bend in the hill. 2nd, I can still race for 2nd, Warrack surely didn't make it on... but he had, and was steadily passing me. I was ugly on the pedals, but it was to no avail as he had my measure to the line. I glanced back again, why would I look, just go, just keep going... but I needed to know if I could stop pedaling and try and give my spasming diaphragm some space.

3rd, on the podium, in the money, a first for me at HCC, and the first one in some years. To think that last race I DNF'd.

Strava link.

D: 47.9km
A: 503m

PMPW: 87kg

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

1/12/2015

NRR:
I had two bikes prepared last night, my roadie for if it was clear, and cross rig in the case it was raining. I checked the radar, I rechecked the radar... I got the cross bike out, then at the last moment swapped shoes and bike, and headed for Northy on the off chance Youngie came and we'd have coffee.

There was no Youngie, in fact there weren't many people at all, and for some reason, in my head this meant I should do cadence drills. Yeah I'm not really sure either, but the rules are old ones. Little ring, no 11 or 12 tooth cog. I made Mordi and decided to keep it going, but at Brighton beach when it hit mid 56km/h, I shifted up.

After the joy of rolling a few turns at 130rpm, I decided I'd have a crack at the sprint from 1km out. I figure such a move is my best chance of winning SKCC's crit, so why not practice. I telegraphed the whole thing with more fanfare than Alex G. Bell's original missive, and dragged Lach and Sam along. Right, so something to work on. Hit harder, or when no one is looking.

Strava link.

D: 55.0km
A: 162m

Commute:


D: 12.2km
A: 70m

PMPW: 87kg

Monday, 30 November 2015

30/11/2015

Commute:
It’s hard to explain puns to kleptomaniacs because they always take things literally.

D: 26.4km
A: 134m

PMPW: 87kg

Sunday, 29 November 2015

29/11/2015

St Kilda East - SKCC Crits - St Kilda East:
I felt like I had a shot today, I didn't because the break was up the road and I never saw the lap boards come out, but I felt like I conserved well and had something left in the legs.

Other than someone giving my quad a bit of a polish with their elbow 3/4 of the way through the race, it was pretty uneventful for me. I cruised the bunch, avoiding the wind up the front, but generally happy to take some on the side. Rush had a team, but it was mostly the kids and we're yet to start working together, that meant I didn't have any responsibility or obligation, so I just worked on cornering and pushing people off the wheel I wanted.

Strava link.

D: 67.4km
A: 66m


PMPW: 87kg

Saturday, 28 November 2015

28/11/2015

Hell Ride:
A few hours less sleep after a work christmas party left me feeling a little off my best, but it was Pat Lane and James Cummins ripping out of the bunch and quickly gapping everyone up to Canadian Bay Rd that really showed me the difference between fit/fresh and tired.

Given the work I'd done to that point, there was no way that I could have gone with them, even if I'd had a solid 8 hours of shut eye it wouldn't have happened.

Strava link.

D: 100.2km
A: 367m

PMPW: 87kg

Friday, 27 November 2015

27/11/2015

Commute:
I've taken up wood carving in my spare time, I'm not very good, but I'm getting there whittle by whittle.

D: 15.2km
A: 92m

PMPW: 86kg

Thursday, 26 November 2015

26/11/2015

Commute:
Did you hear about the guy who invented Lifesavers? They say he made a mint.

D: 33.8km
A: 125m

PMPW: 86kg

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

25/11/2015

5:45am NRR long:
That's better, some ego restoration has occurred.

I set out with one aim this morning, to get a solid Two Bays in, and given I scrubbed several seconds off my previous best time, I'm going to suggest that box got ticked. More pleasing was that I was mentally there, able to hold my body in place and keep on generating power when it hurt a lot, and the dude (Ethan and or Darcy) in front showed no signs of letting up. Yesterday I cracked quicker than an iPhone dropped onto the dunny floor tiles.

I'm still no good at pounding out hard turns on the flat, I left that to a rampaging Leigh Schilling and Darcy Wolley,

Strava link.

D: 106.4km
A: 512m

Commute:
I'll admit that much of the reason for my ear wide grin tonight was the look of misery on those going the other way. Only a small amount was due to the excessive speed even the barest hint of a pedal stroke delivered.

D: 12.3km
A: 60m

PMPW: 87kg

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

24/11/2015

Ricktastic Tuesday:
A couple of notches off due to a hangover from Saturday's shenanigans, a couple of lads willing to lay on some hurt, and I got a quick revision session on having others faster than me.

Riding with people faster than me used to be the norm, but it's gone out of fashion with me, I like being good. I know I've said it before, stated that I should htfu, I guess at this point I'm consciously incompetent (know I'm not able to do something, turn up). The next step is consciously competent, (get myself to turn up), and finally unconsciously competent (just do it).

Some things that I don't do because I might not even hang on. TKM noize. Bak pocket. Hills with DK.

Strava link.

D: 54.6km
A: 704m

Commute:

D:12.4km
A: 51m

PMPW: 87kg

Monday, 23 November 2015

23/11/2015

Commute:
I was listening to a podcast today while I stared intently at a spreadsheet filled with numbers that didn't quite reconcile, and slowly the words of it (the podcast that is) highlighted a thought, a feeling, a moment in time.

The bloke being interviewed nailed a few of my personal flaws, then talked about waiting for the right moment to take action. I believe he was going on about business choices, but in my head it was about a sprint. Waiting, patiently, ignoring the early moves, trusting that the moment will come.

If you're bored, it was a Harvard Business Review Ideacast episode. This one to be exact.

D: 26.2km
A: 135m

PMPW: 87kg

Sunday, 22 November 2015

22/11/2015

Rest:
I actually thought about riding today, just half to three quarts of an hour, nothing that required me to grip the bars too much... you know, because I don't think I could.

Instead I opted for a bit of stretching, a bunch of pizza, and some time with the dog in front of the tv.

PMPW: 85kg

Saturday, 21 November 2015

21/11/2015

St Kida East - Warrandyte - Park Orchards - Ringwood North - Warrandyte - Eltham - Kangaroo Ground - North Warrandyte - St Kilda East:
About a year ago I spied a route created by my old mate BJ, at the time it was a 100km loop with ~2,300m of climbing. I sent him a text and declared I wanted in on it... and in the following 12 months he's added and refined until today he had a 120km ride, with 3,200m vert. I figured if a dumb idea was good, then a really dumb idea was better, so I rode out to Warrandyte to meet him, Jim, Christian and Justin.

The bit after we got rolling... I could either fill pages with text, or sum it up in a few brief sentences. I'll try for the middle the middle, but you'll forgive me if I ramble on, we certainly did during the five and a half hours the loop took.

It wasn't a race, but there were a few small things like "first to wheel spin" and "first to walk". Each of the boys have been riding and racing since before this blog began (hint that's going on 7 years), so normally such things would be unheard of... but we were riding the steepest roads that could be linked up, and it was drizzling when we started out.

I tried to pace myself, the last time I did over 2,000m vert in a single ride was in September, and that wasn't the norm even then. It wasn't just that either... the steepest and longest climbs were at the end, Gumtree, Pigeonbank and Kruses. A few times I thought about turning early, about taking my vert and hightailing it for home, pizza, and icecream.



Instead I rolled on when Jim and Justin exited stage left. I kept going when the conversation stopped, I assume the other two were each in their own mind. I kept going straight when all I wanted to do was deliver the mail, when my arms were screaming and my legs were struggling.

At the top of Kruses I gave BJ and Christian a handshake, or a fist bump, some form of digit touching... and grunted a few words along the lines of "good seeing you", then turned for home into the teeth of a ripping southerly.

Dumb ideas, are the best ideas.

Strava link.

D: 185.5km
A: 4,271m

PMPW: 85kg

Friday, 20 November 2015

20/11/2015

Commute:
On my roll home in the rain, I witness two snails having a ridgy didge fight. They were slugging each other.

D: 33.5km
A: 112m

PMPW: 85kg

Thursday, 19 November 2015

19/11/2015

Rest:
I bought a pair of shoes from a drug dealer I found on gumtree, I don't know what he laced them with, but I was tripping all day.

PMPW: 86kg

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

18/11/2015

Commute:
I've been moaning about not cornering well a bunch recently, and the other day suggested a return to riding on dirt might be the answer. Today's commute, featuring some sneaky inner city dirt on my CX bike highlighted the issue, I've become a passenger to, rather than the driver of turns

D: 25.3km
A: 103m

St Kilda East - HCC Crits - St Kilda East:
The transformation to amazing cornerer didn't happen straight away, I still lost ground on the bottom corner at tonight's race, but I was at the very least leaning my bike in line with my body, rather than leaving it hanging out (more) upright.

While I was thinking about bike position, I completely futzed bunch position, and got caught behind a some spent riders and a rapidly opening gap. I was feeling calm about the race, taking the odd place here or there, losing one or two there and here... the standard bike race washing machine. Around the 10-12 minute mark I saw big Mat Gray coming backwards, I put out the hand of god, confident I'd he'd roll onto the wheel, and I'd have a sweet sit. What actually happened was Mat saw Mason going backwards, gave him the hand of god, I got boxed behind them both, and a big gap opened up.

"Shit."

I figured a lap or two would see us make contact again, especially after DK rolled around me along the bottom straight. It wasn't to be though, we steadily ate into the gap, and got close a couple of times, but just never quite found the safety of a draft.

My quick count of power/altitude spikes suggests we busted ourselves for 9 laps trying to make it happen, before this conversation happened with a C grade marshal.

CGM: "A grade coming through."
NR: "Actually mate, I'm not so sure about that."

23 minutes of racing and I feel hollow physically and detached mentally.

Strava link.

D: 36.9km
A: 337m

PMPW: 86kg

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

17/11/2015

Ricktastic Tuesday:
I set a PB on Pony club, and I've mostly got Dusty's heavy breathing, and the thought that last week I managed to hold the effort all the way to the roundabout to thank for it. The 25 extra Watts I averaged probably helped too, but today it was the brain that told the legs to keep going.

I honestly never felt amazing all ride, I was generally turning a low cadence, feeling bogged down, but on the steepest climb of the day, a new little jaunt parallel to Foote st, I felt positively sprightly on the 15% sections. Still, I'm not one to examine the teeth of a donated equine, especially not when it pertains to a club of them. I'm stoked.

Strava link.

D: 54.7km
A: 703m

Commute:

D: 12.8km
A: 67m

PMPW: 87kg

Monday, 16 November 2015

16/11/2015

Commute:
Why don’t you ever see hippopotamus hiding in trees? Because they’re really good at it.

D: 27.1km
A: 126m

PMPW: 87kg

Sunday, 15 November 2015

15/11/2015

St Kilda East - SKCC Crits - St Kilda East:
For most of the race there was an overriding feeling of "I don't trust these guys". I wasn't confident of their lines, I wasn't confident of their vision/awareness, I wasn't happy with how much braking went on.

That changed with a few laps to go. Dunny and I had found each other and he'd offered the lead out. There I was, happily following his wheel when a rider tried to work me off of it. I give them a bump, said "my wheel". The turned, smiled, said "G'day Neil" and rode off to find another spot. Those two moments, just a second or two apart, caused a change, then another in my thinking.

I was simultaneously more committed to racing, and off with the fairies wondering who it was. I lost track of how many laps we were to go, I dove under Malchai, I gave up Dunny's wheel, I faught for Pat Drapac's, regained Dunny's wheel, had a chat, had a small coming together with Sam Gifford, then rolled over the line. They were moments quick edited together, distinct, but so brief and disjointed that no clear narrative shines through.

Strava link.

D: 66.7km
A: 72m

PMPW: 85kg

Saturday, 14 November 2015

14/11/2015

Hell Ride:
Gah, I must have really fluffed that high 5 yesterday, because after a nice little push up Olivers to ride around everyone and bridge to Tommy Leaper, my tyre blew out (again).

I'm going to have to admit I was pretty sulky about it. I got a tyre boot, and a fresh tube in, then got myself turned around and through Frankston before the bunch, so it's not like it made me get home late... but missing those next couple of hills... they're the best bit!!

I spent most of the roll home sulking in the bunch while others smacked it on the front. I'm pretty sure it was Tommy Leaper and Tiggalo doing the massive turns that had everyone single file, but I was too far back to verify.

A coffee or two and a laugh with mates helped put it all back into perspective. There's always another Hell Ride.

Strava link.

D: 93.1km
A: 304m

PMPW: 85kg

Friday, 13 November 2015

13/11/2015

Commute:
I'm not superstitious, but I occasionally see hints of karma in action.

Rolling home in the sun I spied the giant figure of Beggers riding toward me. I extended my hand for our now customary bike5, and felt the unsatisfying contact of wrist beneath my palm.

The universe was not pleased with this woeful display, for shortly after I hit a blue stone rock and blew out both my tyres.

D: 16.2km
A: 65m

PMPW: 85kg

Thursday, 12 November 2015

12/11/2015

Commute:
When did I become shit at cornering? I swear I used to be half decent, but not I feel like I lose a bike length at both HCC and SKCC crits. I'm thinking I need to spend some time working on it, maybe i need some dirt time. Everyone always needs dirt time.

D: 26.7km
A: 103m

PMPW: 85kg

Wednesday, 11 November 2015

11/11/2015

Commute w extras:
I was meant to meet a mate for a roll, at least I think I was, anyway he wasn't where we didn't actually agree to meet at the time we didn't confirm... so I went for a roll anyway.

Part way down the golden mile I spied a few of the Bak Pocket girls making their way North. "Sweet" I thought. That meant a bunch of massive dudes would soon come rampaging along, and I'd be able to get a nice little leg opener and a coffee. Sure enough, lead by Drew Ginn, they came storming through, and after a dodgy u-turn I was ensconced in their little working group on my way to a piccolo latte.

Strava link.

D: 37.6km
A: 105m

HCC Crit:
Brendan Canty, Allan Iacuone, Alex Morgan, Troy Clarke, David Collins, the Drapac boys, Cam Clamp, Warrack Leach, I'm sure I've missed a few solid riders with a desire to make races hard, but that's what faced me when I rolled up today.

I started up front, but after a little foray into the wind decided to recover a little. Laps came and went, and there wasn't much of a chance to get forward, the pace was hot, and I had a few moments of being pretty much cross eyed.


This is Martyn Taylor's photo, and my knee.

Suddenly it was 4 laps to go, and I had no idea the status of the race, was anyone up the road? I pushed up and asked around, the general consensus was two were away, then Canty drilled it and no one could hold his wheel. 3 up the road. I asked Alby if he wanted me to bring it back, but he told me he didn't have the legs/heart for it... then promptly launched himself too. Through for two to go and guys were dumping their legs, as we hit the bottom straight an elbow flicked and it was my turn in the wind. I put a hard tempo in, tried to get the bike round the corner smoothly, then dumped everything I had left up to the line and the bell. I'd picked up Alby, but Canty and the two others were still away, from what I can tell that's how it finished too.

Not a great race, but I'm happy that it was at the very least a solid training session.

Strava link.

D: 51.8km
A: 491m

PMPW: 85kg

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

10/11/2015

Ricktastic Tuesday:
I felt pretty good once we got rolling this morning. I'd woken sans alarm, and found myself with only 10 minutes to get out the door, I rushed through my normal routines and got pedaling. Maybe it was that that hard start that prepared me, or maybe it was a opportunity presented on a platter by Warrack.

Rolling towards the ramp on Foote St i joked about how much worse approaching it in daylight was, as at least in the dark the true length and gradient were hidden from sight. He replied that he hated it due to power riders opening him up on it.... "it hurts you you say?!"

Seriously, how could I now try and stretch him out? Warrack's got me covered on longer climbs, or in circuits with lots of hard braking and acceleration, so a big neon sign signalling a weakness.... hell yeah I'm going to take a bite at that.

When that went well, I decided to drive the pace on Pony club as well. See how long I could hold onto 600W for, see if I could drop everyone off my wheel, to see if I could ride through the pain.

Strava link.

D: 54.0km
A: 732m

Commute:
After the fun of the morning, I was almost ok with how wet it was on the way home. "If this is the price I have to pay, then that's ok." I said to myself.

D: 12.4km
A: 53m

PMPW: 85kg

Monday, 9 November 2015

9/11/2015

Commute:
I've got a mate who's made some bad job choices. He's now decided, given his career lies in ruins, to become an Archaeologist.

D: 26.4km
A: 88m

PMPW: 85kg

Sunday, 8 November 2015

8/11/2015

Essendon Fields - Mt Macedon - Essendon Fields:
I volunteered to help chaperone some blokes on the Toyota ride to the divide (R2D) ride today. It wasn't quite as strong a group as I had for the AMG round the bay a month or so back, which meant I spent a lot of time perched on the front, doing sweet spot work.

Sunburn aside, it was a good day out. I spent a large part of it talking with a Turkish dude, teaching him how to pronounce Straya and  Melbin.

The climb up Mt Macedon was great, first I played with Bing a bit, which is surreal, but great. Then I dropped back and rode with the R2D riders and practised monoing my road bike. Then, because I looped back one too many times, and was thus a good km or two behind the bunch, I got a great solo run down the steep Macedon side of the hill... well until I caught up to some cars and had to slow down.

Strava link.

D: 141.1km
A: 1,565m

PMPW: 85kg

Saturday, 7 November 2015

7/11/2015

Hell Ride:
I wasn't feeling too strong this morning, so when the headwind took me from 24km/h back down to 20km/h... after I'd crested the hill I was on, well... I considered pulling the pin and going back home and to bed.

I'm glad I didn't though. The smallish crew that came out was pretty much all quality, and 100km in the legs by 9:30am is always nice once it's there.

As for the ride, it was awesome to see Jojo Hogan throwing out more attacks than any of the dudes. I'm not just saying that because having her off the front meant I wasnt stuck, getting zero draught, behind her in the bunch.

Strava link.

D: 101.1km
A: 450m

PMPW: 86kg

Friday, 6 November 2015

6/11/2015

Commute:
I had to take my roadie out today, between the bad weather, and missing the good weather opportunities because I assume it's going to be bad weather, I haven't ridden trained terribly much. A jaunt out on the big blue broadsword wasn't quite enough to soothe the soul, but it was nice none the less.

D: 36.3km
A: 136m

PMPW: 86kg

Thursday, 5 November 2015

5/11/2015

Commute:
Derek Zoolander stated that water is the essence of wetness, i'd contend that this mornings commute was in fact the essence of wetness.

D: 25.8km
A: 92 m

PMPW: 85kg

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

4/11/2015

Commute:
I wasn't keen to ride the Warny, I've said that a few times now, but some days on my commute I feel like I'm getting the Warny experience.

You see there's this bike path along the docklands, and as it passes the wicked sculpture of a dead cow up a tree, there's heaps of pedestrian crossings. As they should, our mates sans wheels have right of way, and to help indicate you might need to slow for them, the council has put in rumble strip things. They're fully shit to ride on, and at 7:45am when there's no one about and I'm thus hooking through, I'd rather prefer if I didn't have to... queue how this relates to the Warny.

Along the edge of the bike path is a thin strip of smooth tile that doesn't get the rumble strip treatment. Rail that and you positively hum along, but given it's fairly narrow, there's always a crossy, and there are light poles smack bang in the middle of it, you've got to be on your A game. Try and push hard down it, and suddenly there's flash backs of being guttered by crossies just past Lismore.

D: 25.7km
A: 119m

PMPW: 86kg

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

3/11/2015

St Kilda East - High - Mt Pleasant - Reynolds - Nathans - Allendale - Yarra - St Kilda East:
It was just Rick and I for an early Tuesday ride, but given a bit of extra time thanks to a public holiday, we had a little extra time up our arm warmers.

We began as most Tuesday's do, rolling up Doncaster Rd, then High St with only a modicum of half wheeling going on. Then once we'd done marveling at beauty of the orange glow of day break that had thrown Mt Dandenong into stark relief, we kicked on and hit some back streets of Eltham. Whack whack, and the kick up Antoinette boulevard was over. A bit of a grind and we got over the rollers of Reynolds rd... but Nathan's rd was a whole different beast. With gradients in the high twentys/low thirties, there is only one option. Go, and hope your frozen hands can hang on to the bars the entire time.

After getting ourselves over that, and back home through Plenty gorge, a side trip to the Kew boulevard and Yarra St seemed like a pleasant prelude to breakfast. I rolled in hard, gave it a kick, and ticked off the power goal I set a few weeks back. 10W/kg for a minute. That... or the 4 coffees I consumed before midday, have left me buzzing.

Strava link.

D: 71.9k
A: 1,221m

PMPW: 85kg

Monday, 2 November 2015

2/11/2015

Commute:
I remember back in high school I wasn't as funny as I am now, in fact I took year 11 and 12 chemistry just so I could get a reaction.

D: 29.4km
A: 160m

PMPW: 86kg

Sunday, 1 November 2015

1/11/2015

St Kilda East - SKCC E grade marshalling - SKCC Womens B grade marshalling - SKCC D grade marshalling - SKCC A Grade - St Kilda East:
I did about 122 laps of the SKCC crit course this morning, and I got a good sense of where I'm at.

I'm not the strongest, I don't have the best sprint, I don't corner better than anyone else, and I'm certainly lacking in the threshold power department... but I'm pretty happy with the DNF that would sit beside my name should they list more than the first 3 riders.

I felt like I was a bit off, but I was still able to mix it up. I missed the break, and the move that went over to it, but I spent a bunch of time either off the front, or chasing said break(s). Give me a good set of legs, and a big set of wheels, and it's game on.

In other news, I still like coffee, talking shit at the back of the bunch, and also dropping a wheel so I can attack into the gap and make the person behind me chase. I'm starting not to like tubs though.

Strava link.

D: 136.9km
A: 136m

PMPW: 86kg

Saturday, 31 October 2015

31/10/2015

Intervals:
There was a proper storm this morning, so I bailed on the idea of doing the Hell ride, and chopped out an ergo instead. I wanted to continue my threshold work, but get a few 1min efforts in. In other words, continue to work on my weakness, but give my strength a little nudge too.

1 x 5 min E1
1 x 10 min @ 315W
1 x 1 min E1
1 x 1 min @ 652W
1 x 3 min E1
1 x 10 min @ 315W
1 x 1 min E1
1 x 1 min @ 652W
1 x 3 min E1
1 x 10 min @ 315W
1 x 1 min E1
1 x 1 min @ 652W
1 x 8 min E1
10 min results: 303W, 311W, 319W
1 min results: 644W, 623W, 691W.

Nothing felt terribly great, but I have been fiddling with my saddle position a little, trying to get this new perch in the perfect spot. That aside, a bit of anger in the last set saw me actually perform, so I think it was just a motivational issue. Cross Vegas just wasn't as thrilling as the Valkenburg world cup.

Strava link.

PMPW: 86kg

Friday, 30 October 2015

30/10/2015

NRR:
Know it sounds funny, but I just can't stand the pain.
Girl I'm leaving you tomorrow.
Seems to me girl, you know I've done all I can.
You see I begged, stole and I borrowed.

Ooh, that's why I'm easy
I'm easy like friday northy.
That's why I'm easy
I'm easy like friday northy.

Strava link.

D: 58.6km
A: 194m

Commute:

D: 15.0km
A: 59m

PMPW: 87kg

Thursday, 29 October 2015

29/10/2015

6am NRR:
Back to the front. You will do, what I say, when I say.
Back to the front. You will die, when I say, you will die.
Back to the front. You coward. You servant. You blind man.

Strava link.

D: 43.9km
A: 168m

Commute:

D: 27.4km
A: 102m

PMPW: 87kg

Wednesday, 28 October 2015

28/10/2015

Commute:
I didn't have any strong feelings about the Warny this year, and the big crits aren't causing my heart to flutter much... but the last few days a little thought has popped into the back of my tiny mind. An idea I swore I'd never, ever, consider... but it's making me a little excited. Riding/racing the Australian road titles. Even if I continue to gain power and lose weight, even if I come in after a solid few months, I will be chaff to the big boys. Not much more than a rolling road block.

Still, if nothing else, it's an interesting insight to the rise in my confidence and the changes to my physiology.

D: 31.4km
A: 132m

PMPW: 86kg

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

27/10/2015

6am NRR:
I couldn't make it out for some hills this morning, but I didn't want that to mean no riding at all. A message to Youngie featuring a coffee emoji locked in Northy, and a history of shenanigans locked in... well more shenanigans.

There was a good southerly blowing, so early on, before things settled, guys were being left on the front for long turns. Being a good bloke, or perhaps just one that wanted a better bunch position, I rolled up the bunch to relieve Mick of pushing the wind. His eyes flicked to the right to see who was coming, and in that instant I knew what was coming, no longer was 450W going to be enough to get over the top. Later, out of Mordi when he went on a flyer off the front, I was happy for him to dig a nice deep hole to lie in.

Strava link.

D: 44.2km
A: 167m

PMPW: 86kg

Monday, 26 October 2015

26/10/2015

Commute:
If you were our training this morning or just riding to work, and you got wet... I'm sorry.

I was wearing a rain shell all the way to work, and as i heated up, it got hot. Even unzipping it wasn't enough, so I took it off when I dropped off the week's clothes to my desk, then popped out to the shops to grab a weeks worth of lunch. Obviously this was the time it decided to get cold and rain.

D: 29.7km
A:122m

PMPW: 86kg

Sunday, 25 October 2015

25/10/2015

Intervals:
1 x 10min E1
1 x 10min @ 300W
1 x 5min E1
1 x 20min @ 300W
1 x 5min E1
1 x 10min @ 300W
1 x 5min E1

Results: 305W, 349W, 410W.

The point was some sweet spot efforts, but I wasn't sure what power that entailed. I feel fitter/stronger than the last time I did them, but my 6 week 20min and 1hr numbers aren't amazing. After 5 minutes of futzing with a calculator, I went with the same number as last time, 300W.

The first effort was super easy, I often found my thoughts drifting off only to snap back and realise I'd let the power drop.

So for the 2nd, the 20 minute-er, I decided to see if I could hold a bit more. I knew changing a session halfway through was dumb, but I was worried I'd set the bar way too low. The effort was a challenge, but every time I saw the "Hup Lars!" in the Valkenburg CX vid I was watching, it spurred me on.

The final effort, well it was only 10 minutes, so I got silly and set some new power numbers, which on an ergo is unheard of for me.

Strava link.

PMPW: 86kg

Saturday, 24 October 2015

24/10/2015

St Kilda East - Eltham - Albert Park Lake - St Kilda East:
There were less coffees than kms today, even if you count the one I ordered but never arrived. I suppose that's for the best, I'd likely be a little silly if I'd had 88 short maccs. Anyway, despite the ratio seeming quite low, the point of today was first the coffee, then rolling along with mates in the sunshine.

As sometimes occurs when riding with mates, the jokes were about poo, and someone started off a series off attacks aimed squarely at setting a maximum power number to brag about. That wsa right up my alley, as not only can I set a decent number while fresh, I'm bloody good at telling everyone about it!

Strava link.

D: 87.9km
A: 807m

PMPW: 86kg

Friday, 23 October 2015

23/10/2015

Commute:
I thought about becoming a vegetarian, but it seemed like a huge missed steak.

D: 27.6km
A: 200m

PMPW: 85kg

Thursday, 22 October 2015

22/10/2015

Commute:
It seems that in the heat of racing the last laps last night, I thought it a good idea to eject my half full water bottle to reduce weight and thus increase my chances of winning. Obviously, being a well thought out gentleman, I promptly forgot it, and thus didn't collect it post race. Yep, real live genius going on over here.

Anyway, I took a detour on my way to work to check if it'd been left sitting at rego. It hadn't, and yeah... um, it sounded like a better story in my head.

D: 35.2km
A: 208m

PMPW: 85kg

Wednesday, 21 October 2015

21/10/2015

Commute:


D: 25.6km
A: 128m

St Kilda East - HCC D Grade - HCC A Grade - St Kilda East:
That hurt. It wasn't all pain, in fact D grade and the start of A were nice, guys were obviously going through moments of pain, but I generally felt like I had the option to take positions or close gaps.

Early in A grade, Alby slipped up the road, for laughs I'd attacked across the line to start the race, but there was a semblance of a chase so sat up pretty quick, he (Alby) then counter attacked and got some room. Though my attack was for giggles, I wasn't ready to go chasing, so I slipped into the bunch and wondered if that was the race done.

Thankfully it wasn't, as due in no part to me it came back together before a mcflurry of attacks started. Alby once again got up the road, this time taking Mark O'Brien with him. with 10-15 minutes left to race, it was the sort of thing that'd steam roll itself to a win. A couple of others jumped off the front, but I still wasn't in a position to respond, but I did manage to find myself on Pat Drapac's wheel, and when he went, I went, thus starting the period that lead to the hurt comment.

With a couple of others along we made it to the bridgers, and shortly after that the front few. I figured I could suck air on the back for a bit, but Alby and Marko had different plans. 10 men was obviously too many for them to be comfortable about, and attacks came thick (thin? skinny? it seems a bit rich to call either of them, especially Marko "thick") and fast. I hung on for dear life, closing a gap or three, hoping I'd find some legs at the end.

I didn't find a sprint, but leaving the initiative to others that defined my final place. Things got more and more tactical as the race wore down to the final laps, and on the last lap, it was a slowish pace along the bottom, guys staring back at each other, playing last corner chicken. I was 5-6 riders back, knowing the right thing would be to attack and get to the corner first, but before I got the nerve to do so, Alby and Pat simultaneously launched and dragged a couple of others with them. 5 guys railed the corner in front of me, and 1 guy, who'd obviously had the misfortune of pushing to much wind floundered a little... and that defined where I ended. I kicked out of the corner past him, but the front 5 were well up the road contesting amongst themselves.

6th, from a strong break, with a strong southerly blowing (not good for a big unit), in the first full HCC of the year. It's all right, and hopefully it's just the start of things to come.

Strava link.

D: 65.5km
A: 711m

PMPW: 84kg

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

20/10/2015

Ricktastic Tuesday:
She wasn't super fast today, so after a coffee I snuck in some extras along the boulevard and ticked off something from yesterday. A trip up Yarra St yielded a delightful 9.58W/Kg for 60 seconds, and the bit I kick for is only 51 seconds long.

Maybe 10 isn't outlandish, maybe with a solid enough hill we're on, oh god, I probably need to do some repeats to really drive things along. That sounds like a pre-work mission in the coming week or two.

Strava link.

D: 58.6km
A: 813m

Commute:

D: 12.6km
A:52m

PMPW: 85kg

Monday, 19 October 2015

19/10/2015

Commute:
So I did some maths last week, and it turns out my dream of 1,000W for 60sec is a little bit unrealistic. It'd essentially make me the fastest bloke getting about the planet, which while cool, might clash with my burgeoning media career.

The first step is to actually crack 10W/kg,  I reckon if I can do that, then it might be time to try the old Eddie Wilson last lap flyer at SKCC crits.... for the moment though, I'm barely cracking 9.

D: 28.1km
A: 167m

PMPW: 87kg

Sunday, 18 October 2015

18/10/2015

Rest:
The tiny canadian made me watch a film about beavers last night. It was the best dam movie I've ever seen.

PMPW: 86kg

Saturday, 17 October 2015

17/10/2015

St Kilda East - Nutfield - St Kilda East:
Starting a ride with a coffee feels like a luxury, there's 6 alarms in my phone pre-6am, and that's too early to run a burr grinder and espresso pump.

The word we used to plan today's ride was bimble, it was a new word to me, and it wasn't the only thing I learnt today. I learnt a bike path that gets me to Nathans/Zig Zag rd in Eltham. I learnt some dirt roads out the back of Nutfield. I learnt that we weren't lost, that we were just not on the route any more.



Strava link.

D: 91.5km
A: 1,241m

PMPW: 86kg

Friday, 16 October 2015

16/10/2015

St Kilda East - Suburbs - Footscray:
It's been a while since I shared some Ross Enamait, and given the shake riding with a backpack had on mine this morning, here's some thoughts on confidence, and building it.



Strava link.

D: 50.7km
A: 657m

Commute:

D: 13.7km
A: 57m

PMPW: 85kg

Thursday, 15 October 2015

15/10/2015

Commute:
I had a dream last night, I had parked my car in a multi story car park, but I couldn't get back into the complex. There was some sense of urgency, so I was running around from place to place trying to find the entrance. Oh, and I was starkers.

Anyway, while running around nekkid, I stopped for a coffee. The cafe was chockers and there were taking forever with my brew, and besides their milk art wasn't that great.

Moral of the story, coffee is important, even when you're nude, but not if you have to wait too long.

D: 25.4km
A: 127m

PMPW: 85kg

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

14/10/2015

Commute:
Just like Christmas day (or the Saturday before) is the most important hell ride of the year, ride to work day is the most important commuter cup of the year.

As "fast" Eddie Wilson always remarks, there are no winners in the commuter cup... but i wanted to lose better than everyone else, so I whacked the big carbon race wheels in my road bike and set about dominating all comers.



D: 12.5km
A: 39m

Footscray, HCC Crits, St Kilda East:
I got the start time wrong and ended up being at the course early enough to marshal d grade, so I did. Dunny joked that I was wasting my watts, but even with a low level hope that I might be at the pointy end tonight, I felt getting the extras in was the best long term strategy.

A grade had a few (re)learning points for me, firstly I seem to suck at the bottom corner again, there's always a gap to cover coming out of it. Second, racing carries risks. 6 laps in and some movement on the left of the bunch just in front of me turned into seeing a mate and another splay out on the tarmac. A lap later, my friend was still on the deck and it was obvious he had a magical ambulance ride in his future. Crashing is no bueno.

Strava link:

D: 12.5km
A: 39m

PMPW: 85kg

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

13/10/2015

Ricktastic Tuesday:
Let's not forget this morning
Yeah, how we rode along the Yarra
How we talked rubbish
To Chris King

These three bergs now just gone
They are the legends of my mind
We both kneel at these socks
To drink of the coffee

You are the tunes in my head, the fire in my legs
You are the voice in my heart that whispers campagnolo
Happy birthday Ricky
Oh-oh..., oh-oh..., oh-oh..

Strava link.

D: 52.9km
A: 719m

Commute:

D:12.4km
A: 47m

PMPW: 85kg

Monday, 12 October 2015

12/10/2015

Commute:
I feel well used today.

D: 26.2km
A: 119m

PMPW: 85kg

Sunday, 11 October 2015

11/10/2015

AMG ATB:
I had charge of the 2nd group of AMG riders on the road today, which though I missed a chance to roll 170 odd kms with my mates in the fastest bunch, meant I was the strongest rider in mine, and that's a nice feeling.

Before we hit mordi, the bunch behind caught up to us making our 20ish rider bunch into a 40ish riders bunch. Soon there were long two up turns on the front, which was a pleasant change to the 170km pushing the wind that I thought I was in for. In fact, there was very little pushing of people either, we were re-focused on the group at large, meaning there were only a couple of hands of god thrown out.

Coming home, a breeze slowly came into being, but unlike the last few years was a helpful hand from the south, rather than a northerly making it an epic day. With a few long pulls from Jaako and I from around Chelsea, we were home in time to get some lunch with our beer

Strava link.

D: 173.7km
A: 904m

PMPW: 85kg

Saturday, 10 October 2015

10/10/2015

Rush shop ride:
I'm fairly sure he has plenty in reserve, he even went as far as describing several moments as "cruising", but for me hanging DK onto and rolling the odd turn over the top of him resulted in new 2015 power PBs for 21-30 minutes.

Strava link.

D: 61.2km
A: 232m

PMPW: 85kg

Friday, 9 October 2015

9/10/2015

Commute:
I didn't to roll extras today because it was such a nice day, but it certainly made it nicer to do so.



D: 43.2km
A: 165m

PMPW: 85kg

Thursday, 8 October 2015

8/10/2015

6am NRR:
Sun Tzu said "Be extremely subtle, even to the point of formlessness. Be extremely mysterious, even to the point of soundlessness. Thereby you can be the director of the opponent's fate..

I think I took the subtlety, the formlessness, and the soundlessness too far, because I was not the director of anyone's fate, let alone my own.

Strava link.

D: 47.2km
A: 172m

Commute:

D: 14.8km
A: 75m

PMPW: 85kg

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

7/10/2015

Commute:
This is my foam roller.
There are many like it, but this one is mine.
My foam roller is not my best friend. It is my life.
I must master it as I must master my life.
On my foam roller , I am useless.
My foam roller, on me, is sort of ridiculous and doesn't achieve anything. 

D: 26.0km
A: 108m

PMPW: 86kg

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

6/10/2015

Ricktastic Tuesday:
There were twin twins today, and I'm not sure if either of them are great for me.

First up was a double pony club, I wasn't super keen, but I'm fairly sure it's good for me in the long run. Some time after that there was double flat whites, I was super keen to get both into my body tired from poor sleep and double ponies... but I'm not so sure they're good for me in the long run.

My ego inflated nicely when there was an argument about who should have to sit next to me on the front up High st. Jason lucked in or out, and we set of chatting at a nice pace. There was an ego correction later on, when despite feeling like we were both working, full conversation carried on behind us.

Strava link.

D: 56.6km
A: 742m

Commute:

D: 12.4km
A: 58m

PMWP: 86kg

Monday, 5 October 2015

5/10/2015

Commute:
There were a few moments on my commute home that I thought were worth noting down.

First up was when I rolled out of work into the heat of the day and unzipped my jersey. i remember thinking to myself, "yep, that'll be worth a mention."

Then later on that moment was superseded by seeing a guy rolling the other way in full tights and a long sleeve (i believe roubaix lined) jersey. "No no, THIS is the moment of the day."

Not long after that, a mere 6km after leaving work, was the true moment of the day. Coming towards me, was the mountain of a man known best as Beggers. I lifted mt hand in the air in greeting, then held it out to the side. His eyes locked on mine, and his own giant mitt extended out... moments passed... pedals turned... then a crack of thunder peeled out across the docklands. Best high five of 2015.

D: 30.2km
A: 127m

PMPW: 86kg

Sunday, 4 October 2015

4/10/2015

Stretching:
Instead of riding today, I figured I'd get some remedial work done, some stretching and a few exercises that leave me feeling a pair of leg warmers shy of being a backup dancer in a Jane Fonda video.

After I finished rubbing my heel up and down the wall of my hallway, I popped the pooch in the car, and drove over to Port Melbourne to watch the first SKCC crit.

PMPW: 87kg

Saturday, 3 October 2015

3/10/2015

Hell Ride:
Mark this day down in the diary, the first ride started in just bibs and a jersey thanks to a northerly pulling heat out of the centre of the continent.

Said Northerly was a big contributor in the speed we held going southward, a nice, big, warm hand in the middle of the back, making sure we hummed along at 50 for a good chunk of it. Even then, a few boys skipped clear, and it wasn't until we hit the slopes of Olivers/Hopes that things came back together. Lights at Humphries ensured it was groupo compacto, but the guys from Inform seemed eager to split things back up. After a steller tow by Josh Toohey set me up to go went clear with 3 of them, but this the lights caught us, rather than letting us stay away.

There's not much to talk about for the return leg though, I held wheels, and when a couple of guys got through a light on the tail of a green that caught the rest of us, the enthusiasm left the whole bunch. Oddly someone got eager after Black Rock, as the was a line of single file riders hugging the gutter through Sandringham. It seemed a bit silly, all I wanted was to tick the clock over 100km, and get 2nd breakfast.

Strava link.

D: 100.0km
A: 405m

PMPW: 86kg

Friday, 2 October 2015

2/10/2015

St Kilda East - Patto - St Kilda East:
TKM had a crew rolling south to Portsea, and while I didn't have the time or inclination for that kind of distance, it was a good opportunity to roll with some mates for a bit.

For the second time this week, DK and I sat at the front of a bunch and let our mouths run, while our legs cycled. Where I turned, Patto river, was less than halfway along their outward leg, but mine were telling me that an easy day was the right choice if I wanted any intensity tomorrow.

Strava link.

D: 70.1km
A: 212m

PMPW: 87kg

Thursday, 1 October 2015

1/10/2015

6am NRR:
That was easier than yesterday. Even the Strava stress scores (analogous of TSS) agree).

Anyway, I was tired before the ride even rolled out, so I took some time to get myself up and into the wind, and that was mostly so Youngie and I would get to coffee quicker.

Strava link.

D: 57.3km
A: 206m

Commute:

D: 13.6km
A: 60m

PMPW: 86kg

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

30/09/2015

NRR:
I sat on the front of the bunch down to Mordi, chatting to DK about bikes and life, then he played witness the fitness.

I took a moment to remove my unnecessary arm warmers, and there was quickly a gap in front of me, a solid kick to covered it, but also set my heart up and over my threshold. I, like everyone else had to sit contented with cheese on toast.

Strava link.

D: 56.9km
A: 202m

Commute:

D: 12.4km
A: 54m

PMPW: 85kg

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

29/09/2015

Ricktastic Tuesday:
It felt like the 3 boys that rolled with me this morning, were out more for their mental than physical health. Sure Ricky half wheeled me all the way up Doncaster Rd from Bulleen to Balwyn road, but it felt more like habit than intent.

Where we were going for coffee mattered more than what time was set up pony club. That's not to say Pony club was cruised, it's Tuesday after all, and that means it's a big ring climb. If you want to spend time gazing at the golden light filtering across the green rolling hills, or reflect on how there are the barest hints of fog clinging to the grass around the coated horses standing idly in the field, then do so after you've reached the roundabout.

Strava link.

D: 52.9km
A: 632m

Commute:

D: 12.4km
A: 52m

PMPW: 85kg

Monday, 28 September 2015

28/09/2015

Commute:
As I rolled around the lake this afternoon, I got chatting to a bloke who told me about how he was weighing up getting a brain transplant. He wasn't super keen on the idea, but I think he'll change his mind.

D: 26.5km
A: 114m

PMPW: 85kg

Sunday, 27 September 2015

27/09/2015

St Kilda East - Mordialloc - St Kilda East:
Two encounters directed and defined my ride today.

The first was just after I'd left home, I was headed out toward the back of Port Melbourne to roll the legs over, when I spied Danny Cohen heading the other way, on route to Patto river. I swung around and abandoned the idea of riding past the docks.

The second was on my way home from Mordi, I'd had a chat with the Total Rush bunch I'd found in the carpark, and was rolling slowly north. A bloke on a TT rig with a tail of big Becoz boys rolled past, one of whom made a train noise. I abandoned the idea of rolling super gentle, and took the express route home. Thanks to the bloke on the front, and the mass of the boys sitting behind him, it wasn't a much harder effort, but it was certainly quicker. Choo choo indeed.

Strava link.

D: 49.0km
A: 196m

PMPW: 85kg

Saturday, 26 September 2015

26/09/2015

Hell Ride:
100km and home again in time for brunch feels alien, but in a good way. What also felt good was my fitness, I had enough to ask everyone to kindly go faster up Olivers hill because they were blocking me from chasing down the few riders who'd skipped clear. I had enough to kick out of the bunch and go clear up to Canadian Bay Rd, and finally enough to roll home 3rd in the sprint to black rock.

I feel kind of off about it all, I don't think I've been training more, or smarter. I moved my ssaddle forward about 3/4 of a mm, but I doubt that's given me extra wattages. Oh well, if anyone has a horse they want to donate, it seems I'm interested in practising equine dentistry.

Strava link.

D: 106.3km
A: 391m

PMPW: 85kg

Friday, 25 September 2015

25/09/2015

Friday Lengendz:
I had a vague idea, but no real concept of the details of this morning's plans before I rolled out. Wilko, Pete Smith and Horvart, rolling around some of the inner eastern suburbs, then a coffee.

What I got was that, but with heaps of shit talk, and several full noise sprints. Despite pulling over 1,600W I didn't come close on the flattest one, I was ill prepared and was quickly out of gears.

It really is the banter that will stick with me though.

Strava link.

D: 37.6km
A: 300m

Commute:

D: 12.3km
A: 52m

PMPW: 86kg

Thursday, 24 September 2015

24/09/2015

6am NRR:
That felt good, or rather I felt good. Sure it'd be nice to punch harder/longer/both in the sprint leadout, but I think with some mental or vocal cajoling the body would give up a few more Watts.

Mostly I just felt like I could roll anywhere I wanted, and turn up the pace, or hold a tempo or.... oh man I wish I could bottle this feeling! It's not like I slept well, or have a great diet, my training isn't anything to write home about, and I didn't have any coffee before the ride... so buggered if I know how to repeat the sensation.

Anyway, it was nice, and it makes the prospect of crits starting next week a lot less scary. Now the task is keeping my head screwed on. nothing is going to be easy, but a lot of things (given the right willingness to dig) could be possible.

Strava link.

D: 44.1km
A: 158m

Commute:

D: 12.6km
A: 56m

PMPW:

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

23/09/2015

Belgie:
Somewhere along the way, and I mean on life's journey not just today's, my confidence and or ability to corner a bike at its limit has waned. It's not the end of the world, but I'd like to get back to a point where I don't drop a wheel to a bike length on turns.

That little observation aside, got it was good to be on the bike this morning. It felt like a win just being out, given the forecast earlier on this week, and the Belgie itself is a giggle.

Strava link.

D: 56.4km
A: 721m

Commute:

D: 12.3km
A: 67m

PMPW: 87kg

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

22/09/2015

Commute:
Work got the aircon system serviced yesterday, and now there's a sound... and it's fucking with me.

It's a low rumble of a sound, and I keep finding myself panicking about / resigning myself to riding home in a storm.

Stupid jerk aircon!

D: 24.9km
A: 81m

PMPW: 87kg

Monday, 21 September 2015

21/09/2015

Commute:
The forecast for this week is shit until the weekend, which leaves me wondering how I'm going to get my endorphin fix.

I think the answer is to go stand under a barbell, but I'm not yet ready to accept that I'll be unable to walk for the rest of the week.

D: 25.3km
A: 102m

PMPW: 87kg

Sunday, 20 September 2015

20/09/2015

CX Shenanigans:
I hooked up with Caddy again for another try at CX adventures. This time we avoided the ferocious trees of lower Rosanna, and instead asked of ourselves one simple question.

"Take the singletrack?"

Obviously the answer was yes, and obviously it was the right choice. What wasn't obvious to me beforehand, was how many memories some of these trails would bring forth.


This photo is definitely Steve's.

We haven't quite yet reached the point of remembering things with a golden glow, the tint is certainly still one of redness, or perhaps its a shrinking tunnel of vision, but it was still nice to revisit the memories of riding trails a decade ago.

Strava link.

D: 60.0km
A: 722m

PMPW: 87kg

Saturday, 19 September 2015

19/09/2015

Wardennes:
Rick and I met a strong BG crew on route north for a little Wardennes action. I wasn't the slowest, but there was a bloke named Jeremy who was a shoe in for the title of fastest.

On Mt Pleasant I let others push the air, trying my best to keep myself cool calm and collected, because to be fair, I thought I might struggle to even hold on. When I found myself still attached leading into the final kicker to the Warrandyte Rd, I decided to try to hit the last few riders from behind and sneak a win. Not only was I caught, but I was dispatched by the fellow in royal blue Rapha (the Jeremy character I mentioned earlier).

Once that pecking order was established, it quietened down a little. I played near the front for most of the ride, but the pace never quite required I dig as deep, I'm going to go as far as saying I was having fun.


This is totes Gene Kehoe's photo.

Then... a mate hit the deck. There was a stray tool biddon, a corner, and a ditch on the other side. Ambulances were called, and once the paramedics applied a Dora the Explorer bandaid to the worst of the wounds, there was a remounting and a ride home in the sun.

It sounds slightly anti-climactic, and I was thinking just that as I rolled down Chapel st on my way home, then I decided to think about the car that was giving me a right good nudge from the right. While no trained medical professionals were required, my road bike now sports a new hanger... so that's something I suppose.

Strava link.

D: 96.6km
A: 1,376

PMPW: 85kg

Friday, 18 September 2015

18/09/2015

Commute:
A few words, SMS'd before the early bird had even scratched itself, was enough to see my alarm reset and set me up for regret later on.

"We may get drizzled on."

I should have just grabbed some booties, a rain shell, my mini mud guard, and got a ride in.


D: 26.3km
A: 125m

PMPW: 85kg

Thursday, 17 September 2015

17/09/2015

Rest:
There were a lot of stairs at the conference I was at today, so I made sure to keep my eye on them at all times. They were up to something.


PMPW: 86kg

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

16/09/2015

Ricktastic Tuesday  Strausy Wednesday:
Dan Strauss had a plan, I believed it was a regular Tuesday loop, but with double pony club. What it was was a regular Tuesday loop, with a double pony club, with every climb to be a Dan v Neil challenge.

I've got to hand it to Daniel, he's persistent, or relentless, or excitable... basically it took a lot of effort to best him up a climb... but he recovers way faster than I do, so hits the next one just as hard while I was still cross eyed. Bloody hell it was a good session though.

Strava link.

D: 59.2km
A: 746m

Commute:

D: 12.6km
A: 45m

PMPW: 85kg

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

15/09/2015

Rest:
I've got a mate who recently retired after years of putting everything into his shoe making business. He really gave his awl.

PMPW: 86kg

Monday, 14 September 2015

14/09/2015

Commute:
Bibs and jersey, yep that's all I needed/wanted to wear to ride today.

I went back through my instagram account to check out what was going on a year, and two years ago. Last year I was on Wilson's prom, with rain and fog rolling over Mt Oberon, and the year before that I spy jumpers, caps, and neck warmers.

D: 26.0km
A: 105m

PMPW: 86kg

Sunday, 13 September 2015

13/09/2015

CX Shenanigans:
After yesterday where I showed him some bits of tarmac he hadn't seen, Pikey returned the favour today by showing me some new bits of single track, and a bunch of bluestones that had us simultaneously giggling and concerned about how much our arms were wobbling about.

Neither of us felt terribly sprightly today, the repeated kicks of yesterday's route had taken the punch out of our bodies, and left us craving some quieter moments. Those moments came (for me) in a couple of different ways.

First up were a few sections of twisting trail where the mind and the body and the bike disappear, and there is just this turn, then the next one, until you popped out the other side to the smell of bat poo.

The second was the strip of dodgy tail along Daerebin creek, a long straight stretch of green that made let the mind drift off and forget that just over the embankment several million people's lives were carrying on. There was just bike, bloke and buffalo (it might have been rye or cooch, but neither of those make for a good alliteration).

Strava link.

D: 43.3km
A: 384m

PMPW: 86kg

Saturday, 12 September 2015

12/09/2015

St Kilda East - Mt Pleasant - Stony Creek - Kruses - Pigeon Bank - Nicholas - Alma - School - Christian - Flat Rock - St Kilda East:
I wanted a morning of bikes with mates and after several hours of cruising, half wheeling and outright attacks on quiet back roads, I'm ready for a nap.



Dusty was once again keen to push himself hard and I still wasn't ready to let him take any easy wins... or any wins at all. Add Fewy, Ged, Pikey, and a few others in, and it was at times further from gentlemanly than the amount of Rapha would lead one to believe.

The thing that's still got me feeling rather chuffed came long after everyone had turned off for their respective homes. A few hundred metres from my own place, I asked my tired legs to give me a sprint, and they pushed some of the best numbers of 2015. Maybe... just maybe, I might still have a chance to take a crit win this summer.

Strava link.

D: 110.8km
A: 2,032m

PMPW: 86kg

Friday, 11 September 2015

11/09/2015

Recovery roll:

Strava link.

D: 21.5km
A: 30m

Commute:
A few years ago it became illegal to drink while driving, so I'm assuming it's thus also not kosher to do so while riding a bike... buuut if you had to pick an arvo to do so, today's was pretty tops.

D: 26.3km
A: 119m

PMPW:

Thursday, 10 September 2015

10/09/2015

Commute:
I used to play golf a bit, though not enough to get good. Despite this I'd always take a spare pair of pants to the course, in case I got a hole in one.

D: 26.6km
A: 173m

PMPW:

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

9/09/2015

Belgie:
I enjoyed that. There were giggles at dudes getting well sideways, and giggles at pain getting dished out left and right. That the ride didn't need lights, and that I didn't need leg or knee warmers was just cream on the top of an already delicious dairy product. What's not to like?!

It all gave me a taste of the summer to come, of blokes (let's be clear, blokes is not gender specific) being ridiculous on bicycles. It tasted like a flat white and a short macc pre, and a flat white post ride. This summer is going to taste like coffee. I know that's what last summer tasted like, but I'm telling you, it's still a thing!

Strava link.

D: 56.9km
A: 576m

Commute:

D: 12.4km
A: 50m

PMPW: 86kg

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

8/09/2015

6am NRR:
I checked the radar before getting up, and figured it said "the roads will be wet, you may get a touch of drizzle, go ride".

Whether I misread the radar, or things changed after I checked it, but what happened on my ride was far worse than drizzle. The 7 riders who made it around today were pretty much all drenched. Sure there were dry bits, protected by some garment or device, but overall I'm guessing everyone felt like a half drowned rat.

On the flip side of the coin, the rain meant we rode two up. I started off at the front, pushing a steady 300-350W next to Tozer, which is basically a 20-25min sweet spot interval broken up by the odd red light.

Strava link.

D: 38.5km
A: 178m

Commute:

D: 24.7km
A: 99m

PMPW: 86kg

Monday, 7 September 2015

7/09/2015

Commute:
After 30 odd minutes of riding into a block headwind to work, there was a brief moment, 100m or so where my route curled back around and I got the wind at my back. The headwind wasn't terrible, but the silence of that last bit of road made me realise why the train of riders streaming inbound on the docklands highway seemed awfully happy for a Monday.

D: 25.2km
A: 109m

PMPW: 86kg

Sunday, 6 September 2015

6/09/2015

CX Shenanigans:
Last night I planned a couple of things for this morning, but didn't plan on one pertinent item.

I got up early and was out the door at 6am. I knew that sun rise is 6:35, so by the time I got to singletrack it'd be light and I'd have them all to myself. I'm a thinker, this was good thinking.

I didn't really come up with a specific route, so I was kind of exploring and going with a path less ridden vibe. Which brings be to a bit of trail along the Yarra between Bridge Rd and Victoria St. I was thinking about the ennui that I seemed to have, and how I wasn't doing the opportunity to ride much justice. This particular bit of trail is not a bad one for that scenario though, it starts off open, but tightens up before two quick dips and turns spit give you something to think about, before it spits you out the end. It was the second one of those dippy turny bits that I got some good thinking done. Thoughts like "Shit, that's not ideal!", "Was my tyre flat or did I push too hard?", and "Fuck I'm still attached to my bike, this might hurt in a bit!".

I reckon those are valid thoughts, and they finally pointed to me being present in the moment. Sadly during the many moments that followed while I sat by a slightly foggy Yarra river and put a tube in my very burped front tyre, I came back out of the moment. I decided I would just rather go home, have a shower, make a coffee, and possibly not tell anyone about digging the poor worm and his/her dirt home out of my shoe buckle.

Strava link.

D: 19.9km
A: 124m

PMPW: 86kg