Wednesday, March 28, 2007


Well I've been slacking with posts recently, mostly because of too much work and very little free time. After a hard few days training at the end of last week I took two days off the bike (Mon and Tues) and rode an hour easy today. Commuting home (which really makes for 1.5 hours of riding) my legs still felt like hell, not a quick recovery. I hate to say it but this is the first year I can feel being older. I don't seem to recover from hard work as quick and to fully recover takes work (things like stretching and sleeping). Unfortunately for me those two extra items are harder to come by than they are to think about. I did get in a good stretch tonight and have another easy day scheduled for tomorrow so hopefully the legs will come around for the weekend.

I'm planning on racing a road race on Sunday, it will be a good test to see how the last block of training went. If the legs recover I should be alright, if they feel as bad as today it will be a waste of $30 for the entry fee.

Seamus has decided to try soccer again this season. We had his first practice last night, I must say I was impressed with his effort. Last spring he hated it and never participated. Yesterday he was following the ball and laughing. He even (accidentally) kicked the ball a few times. I hope he has better luck with it this year. If nothing else it is good to get him out and doing something active. I hope he actually gets more into it as he plays a little more, maybe even try to really kick the ball. His first game is Saturday and the season goes until mid-May, which means no Saturday racing till after that, but I'd much rather watch him play soccer any day. It is fun to see, especially when he is having fun and gaining confidence. Even in an hour practice yesterday I could see him feeling better about his soccer playing skills. I'm going to try to get pictures at Saturday's game to post.

Gotta get to bed so I can get up early to ride before work.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Going Green

So one of the most common questions I've been asked recently is "how do you go green?". Clearly there is the effort to reduce product usage, recycle, reuse, alternative commuting, but what else can you do? So I'm going to start to track down companies that are "green". This week I'm starting with Clif Bar (, mostly because it is a cycling/sports related product so it seems to make sense.

Gary, the guy who started and owns Clif Bars is very environmentally friendly. A huge part of the company goals/mission is to create a sustainable environment. This goes from using organic produce, to sponsoring teams that are green focused, to buying wind energy credits. The best sample of Clif's dedication I've seen in practice was their cyclo-cross team at race last fall. These guys are elite (pro) racers, who spent time at races digging through trash cans to pull out recyclable materials that had been thrown away. Clearly the Clif sponsorship helped to dictate that and I'm sure increased awareness at races. Because of Clif's environmental focus I've switched all my riding energy products to Clif. I had been a Powerbar user for many years, but because of Clif Bars concern for more than just profit I've switched brands.

Speaking of Clif Bars, the management book Gary Erickson wrote (Raising the Bar) is a solid business read. If you're looking for a good management style book check it out. If you want a recycled version let me know and I'll send you mine.

I got in my first actual mountain bike ride in a long time yesterday. Rode for about 2 hours at Green Mountain. For those of you in the know GM isn't the greatest spot for riding as it is fairly nontechnical, but given the weather I was just glad to be on the dirt. Hopefully I'll be racing in the dirt in a couple of weeks, we'll see how things pan out, but I felt good and the training seems to be going well.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

I'm tired

Another long day on the bike today, busted out a ride to Lookout, two climbs up and on the bad side two flats. The first happened about 15 minutes into the ride, the second at about 3 hours. All I can say about that is, good thing I have some new tires on the way. I’ve had a few flats recently and that is always the sign new tires are needed.

I’ve been trying to sneak in some reading on the scientific background on global warming, which given a day spent in LA waiting for one meeting, was provided in plenty. I actually damn near finished two books that day (Monday) as there was a lot of travel time with minimal meeting time. So what did I learn? The facts seem to show that no matter how you slice it the current increase in CO2 (and other gases) can’t (at least historically) be explained as a “natural” happening. What is showing to happen is an acceleration of environmental change caused by humans adding in greenhouses gases to the atmosphere by the ton. Back to a topic from a few weeks ago, recycling seems to be a simple way to help reduce our waste. But the question is what can be recycled? I don’t have the definitive answers here as many locations vary what is acceptable but here is a list of “standards”: newspaper, office paper, aluminum cans, plastics (1 or 2 on the bottom), canned food cans, junk mail, cardboard, cereal box (and the like) containers including toilet paper/paper towel rolls. What isn’t recyclable in most places includes plastic other than 1 or 2 (such as cottage cheese/cream cheese containers), cardboard milk/juice containers. Some times it may take a little extra effort to recycle items but in the long run it is worth the time/effort. One area I’ve been concentrating on is pop cans at work (far less convenient than the trash can at my desk) and paper napkins (only taking one). Hopefully these help, especially since I’ve been flying a lot recently which isn’t good for anything.

We’ve also tried to take care of a few things at home with waste/recycling, such as using clothe napkins every night, using reusable water bottles instead of “bottled” water and changing some cleaning supplies. I’m still waiting for a “big” change, but beginning to think that a lot of small changes may be better. So what have you done today?

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Racing in March?

Since this blog is suppose to be about bike racing and global warming I'm going to highlight the bike racing thing today. Why? Well, mostly cause the season has kicked-off here in Colorado and I actually raced. Today was the first race of the year, part of an early season series of road races (crits, which are multi lap races on a short course) up in Boulder.

I decided to race yesterday after putting in some hard efforts and feeling not terrible. I figured since the week would be light in terms of riding hours anyway I might as well get in hard work. Now one thing to keep in mind with this racing in March thing is, I'm a mountain biker not a road racer and today's kind of race is fast, not particularly suited for an endurance guy like me. I knew the hard work would be/will be good later in the year though. The strange thing with the first race of the year is not having any idea what you'll do. I came in to today with low expectations since I haven't done any intervals until this week, I had just come off 6 days off, and while in Mexico I gained a lot of weight (10 lbs). All these things had me expecting to get beat good, no chance of staying with the leaders, which on a course like this (in the past) has been a miracle. Somehow today though I rode good. Stayed with the lead group the entire time, attacked once just to test the field and was in the sprint for the win at the end. Now road racers and mountain bikers have different strengths and one area mountain bikers are weak is the sprint, so needless to say I didn't do good in the sprint, but man was it fun. Far more important than the results was the information I gained today: yes the work this winter is paying off, yes there is room to go (no intervals yet) and finally that racing is still fun ( I knew this though).

The first race is also good on a social level, a few of my mountain biking brethren were at the race, Steve and Rob racing and Och hanging out cheering. It was good to catch up for a few minutes after the race, knowing I'll be seeing these guys all summer.

Next stop, LA tomorrow for the day then back to Denver late tomorrow night. I'll try to write some on Global Warming as I've been reading a lot about issues recently, but until then, what have you done today?

Thursday, March 01, 2007


I was a slacker in Mexico, didn't post because I didn't feel like hanging out in the hotel lobby to get wireless. We spent most of our time on the beach, but did go to Tulum for a day ( to check out the ruins. Over the past 1.5 years I've been to Germany, India and now Mexico and have taken time to see some historical sites in all places. It is pretty cool to see the unique designs in each area and to see the skills of the craftsmen thousands of years ago.