22 December 2011

you should stay right there

so, it's here. i'm wrapping up my work week today. all my clients are on shutdown next week so it usually works out well to take the time between christmas and new years. and, i take 4 PTO days and get 11 consecutive days off which isn't too shabby. i pay the price the week leading up though - my pharma clients are all trying to spend the last of their 2011 budgets before the end of the year, reviews need to be done by december 31st (which means by today), and i need to make sure everyone is scheduled appropriately for the next week. oh, and we are in a growth phase which means i have another interview this morning . the joys of a fancy corporate job i guess. everything is getting wrapped up today so i should be able to relax...after our travels that is.

felt like crap all day yesterday. was exhausted once we got cal to bed and were able to start thing about workouts. i almost opted out but decided i would set up the trainer at least try to get 45 minutes. i ended up with 1:15 including 2 sets of 3 hard, 3 easy with 8 minutes between sets. more trainer time this afternoon and then run run run.

to all of you who endure this blog and the (mostly) mind numbing entries that i provide, i hope you have a merry christmas. i doubt i will be posting anything until sometime next week so you all get a much needed break. thanks for reading and sorry for the content!

happy thursday.

21 December 2011

aesthetics of sport

i like sports uniforms. everyone geeks out about something and this is one of mine. so when i read this, i got a little excited. i mean, the badger uniforms are ok - but not unique. the flying w on the helmets is too big and the shading has more of a mid-90's feel to it than 2012. everything else is easy on the eye if not unoriginal (see nebraska). i've been saying for a bit now that they should revamp the look. modernize while pulling some elements from the past. maybe this will serve as a spring board for some permanent changes. i have some ideas in case barry alvarez is reading this (and barry, i fully understand that the flying w won't go anywhere as you own the rights to it - maybe a few tweaks though?).

i ran last night and felt really good. woke up this morning feeling pretty crappy. typical stuff. calvin contributed by disrupting our sleep at 2:30 although these days when he wakes up he is pretty easy - just a little cuddling and tuck him back in and we are golden. trainer tonight. we have been instructed by corporate to leave at 3 tomorrow which might give me an opportunity to ride outside. i might try to get up early and ride the trainer on friday before we begin our semi-annual tour d' wisconsin. then, it'll be running s, n, m and t if i am able to do anything.

two more days to get all my end of year stuff done at work.

happy wednesday.

20 December 2011

here we go again

you know, i felt like i had been doing ok with the the 'holiday blues' that usually kick in this time of year. we have stayed ahead of all the stupid things we do this time of year (gifts, cards, decorating, etc.). we haven't been watching a whole lot of tv so we're not burnt out on christmas from being immersed in ads. and, we made travel plans that were relatively comfortable for us and made everyone happy. well, check that. as we rapidly approach we are getting push back from both sides regarding the things we are doing. not getting here early enough, not staying long enough, not seeing enough people. why does it have to be this way? i love my family and i love robin's family but when this stuff starts happening i'd rather stay home.

i understand that it isn't for bad reasons that everyone wants us to do everything. what i don't understand is why the people who care about us the most seem so intent on grinding us down to the smallest nub possible.

sorry, i guess i just needed to vent a little.

no workout last night as we were able to spend a nice evening with my sis/brother in law. it makes me very happy when they are able to visit and we can get some of their time to ourselves. plus, morten takes some pressure off of me to play calvin's favorite game (it is called tumble tackle time)!

happy tuesday.

19 December 2011

reality comes crashing down

had a great weekend (and productive too). we are christmas ready with some big efforts put in by my lovely bride (cookies, cards). i pitched in by putting the final touches on the gifts and assembling calvin's 'big' santa gift. calvin even got to see santa and while i wouldn't say he was happy about sitting with a strange man with a straggly beard, he didn't freak out either.

training wise i am also very happy with what i was able to do. woke up to a dusting of snow saturday that persisted and kept the roads slick. i opted for a trainer session and managed 1:15 with some higher intensity stuff during the commercials of whatever bowl game i was watching (beef o'bracy famous potato albuqurque bowl???). yesterday i did 3 laps at badger prairie and then rode home via military ridge trail. with a little freezing/snow/thawing that course is going to fool some people who think it is easy. any north facing surfaces were ice covered and anything in the sun was mud on top of ice. really a great cross course.

m: 0:30 (trainer)
t: 0
w: 0:45 (run)
r: 1:00 (trainer, 2 sets of 3x3:00 intervals)
f: 0:45 (run)
s: 1:15 (trainer w/some bursts)
n: 1:30 (to, at and from badger prairie)
total: 5:45

not bad i guess. this time of the year is tough.

i am already having a pretty sweet day. analytical issues over the weekend. interview in 1/2 hour. and i still have to write a review and give two of them. tis the season for the end of the year crunch. the good news is my sis/bro in law will be at my house this morning!

happy monday.

16 December 2011

broken spoke charging smoke wheels

trainer intervals last night: 2 sets of 3 min hard, 3 minutes easy with 8 min between sets. my legs are feeling it this morning which is a good thing. the new fluid module is great and produces a ton of resistance. great workout!

in addition to end of year revenue stuff at work, it is also our deadline for completing annual reviews. i left work a little early to put some work into my reviews and i made some good progress. i went to get calvin from dc (leaving oliver to roam the house as i always do) and when we got back cali exclaimed 'oh nooooo, oh nooooo - chop tree down!' our christmas tree had fallen scattering needles and ornaments across the living room. i have no definitive proof but based on how oliver was acting he played a major role. his ears were back, he was sitting and trembling.

anyway, nothing broken and the tree is back up and re-decorated so i guess no harm no foul.

happy friday.

15 December 2011

aquarium drinker

i ran in the rain last night. it was 50 degrees and damp and it felt so good to be out. this weather continues to amaze. after we did our workouts, we spent more time wrapping gifts and it seems to me that we are almost done with everything a week plus in advance. nice!

tonight i'm going to do intervals of some sort on the trainer. i've done a lot of things well this year in terms of training. i've really been disciplined with my diet. i've ridden 6-8 hours (or more) per week without impacting family life too much. i've developed more realistic athletic goals that makes it all more enjoyable. but a big one i am missing are formal workouts targeting different systems - i tend to just ride (sometimes hard) but never anything formalized to increase my speed and strength. even though i have only one race to go, i have time to mix in some intervals. i'll try to do at least one interval workout per week leading up to nationals - and then i'll make that a goal for 2012.

oh, and i had another very good customer service experience yesterday that i am not currently at liberty to discuss (because it has something to do with a gift for a certain reader). i will describe post christmas but, as with my experience with saris, i left the experience surprised, very happy and very willing to buy from them again even if it is marginally more expensive.

happy thursday.

13 December 2011

in review

i was looking at my results from the cross season and to my surprise i'll have done 9 races this year when said and done. the furthest i've traveled for a race is for the state championships in hales corners. it's pretty cool that i can do 8 races without traveling more than 45 minutes. from a racing perspective, i'm lucky!

30 minutes of easy spinning last night on the trainer. then, since it is that time of the year again, spent an hour and a half wrapping gifts. we got a great start. i really wanted to get up this morning and run but i was so tired. it's date night tonight so i'll settle for a zero in the log - not a bad thing coming off a couple of big efforts.

last weeks training:
m: 0:30 minutes (trainer)
t: 1:15 (commute)
w: 0:45 (run)
r: 1:00 (commute)
f: off
s: 1:30 (badger cross!)
n: 1:15 (badger cross!)
total: 6:15

a photo from wizard cross:

happy tuesday.

12 December 2011

badger cross!

well, my first (and last) 2 day racing weekend of the season.

day 1: it was cold! i rode over to the course from home and tried to get a good lather going. got a preview lap in and then spent some time talking with friends and sitting in the warming house to keep the blood flowing. did some final anaerobic bursts and then headed to the start line. i was call up #3 (order of registration) which was cool but i lost it all in the first 1/4 mile. no worries, i got a very good (read: controlled) start and then got to work on lap 2. was able to reel people in as the race progressed, felt strong on the run up and punchy climbs and all in all had a very good race. good enough for 11th and my best usa cycling point tally of the year.

after the race i rode home, changed and then it was time to head out for our annual christmas tree adventure. the k-team then hosted us and mike, joe and heidi for dinner and tall tales. a great day!

day 2: woke up feeling a little sore and heavy but not bad. similar warm up routine and then it was time to go. felt good the first couple of laps but laid the bike down 3 separate times - it was too much to overcome. i'm glad i had a good day saturday, because i felt like my mental errors cost me a promising physical day on sunday. that's racing i guess.

the nationals course is pretty awesome in my opinion. i'm excited to race it (and hope to not get lapped by the ringers that are already signed up for my race). i'm even more excited to see the pros rip it up for the stars and bars!

happy monday.

09 December 2011

spreadsheets in the morning, spreadsheets in the evening

kind of like that fleet foxes song. been crunching numbers a lot lately and last night i had dreams about spreadsheets. it's funny, i am a procrastinator but once i get some impetus to do something i am all in. it still regularly amazes me that numbers can be very definitive and at the same time raise more questions than when you started. this is cryptic i know...

i had to shorten the ride home slightly last night due to leaving later than i had wanted. it was for the best as it felt really cold. off today and then racing tomorrow and sunday - i've been looking forward to this one for awhile. the last 3 races of the season are on my home course - hopefully i can take full advantage!

happy friday.

08 December 2011

almost done.

man, i've spent a lot of mental energy on cyclocross this year. with fat tire and cyclocross as duel motivation, i was able to treat july as a 'training camp' month building base and putting a foundation in place. i had a very enjoyable and good race at fat tire but it took me awhile to feel like i was performing at my max in cross. the past few races i've been feeling better and better so hopefully i'm peaking at the correct time. after all the build up and energy it is weird to think that racing season is almost done.

over the past few days we've also come to the realization that we need to scale our lives back a bit. i had been intent on upgrading my cross frame for next year with a november frame/fork. but i'm pulling the plug on that (i have a bike that works just fine thank you very much). we've become very inept lately at balancing our wants with our needs and that all changes now. that is not so say i won't make some upgrades that will make me just as (well almost) as happy. i can upgrade my crankset, brakes and wheels for the same price as the frame/fork. seems like a no brainer now that have written it out!

i got out for a very nice run last night. with the cold air and the lack of allergens i am feeling pretty good lately. maybe i need to find a winter marathon some year? anyway, rode in this morning and felt good (but cold). one of my favorite lifestyle changes of the year is the bike commute. incorporating two daily workouts into something i need to do anyway (ie. go to work) is good. being able to clear my mind before and after work is even better.

happy thursday.

07 December 2011

turn my mood on a dime

woke up feeling crappy but trying to stay positive. i need to, in a half an hour i have a conference call with a new italian client and it doesn't seem from written correspondence thus far that they will be speaking very clear english.

my ride home last night was ok. i spent the night doing some stuff that i didn't enjoy but needs to be done. i didn't ride in today due to the necessity to complete some errands but i'm hoping to get out for a run tonight.

bike commute tomorrow, off friday and then two days of badger cross!

happy wednesday.

06 December 2011

new trainer

lets be clear - 'riding' a trainer sucks it. but it is a lot better on a trainer that is working properly. although, after feeling how my legs felt after a mere 30 minutes of active recovery time last night it is making me wonder how much good any of the other trainer time i've logged the past year or two is worth. some is better than none i guess.

last weeks training:
m: 1:15 (commute)
t: 0:45 (run)
w: 1:15 (commute)
r: 1:00 (ride at badger prairie)
f: 1:15 (commute)
s: 0
n: 1:30 (wizard cross)
total: 7 hours

i'll take it. for what it is worth, i feel like i am peaking at the right time. 2 days of badger cross this weekend will test that. then, it's just trying to maintain as much as possible until nationals. i rode in this morning and i must admit i'm getting used to riding in 20-30 degree temps. that is a good thing!

happy tuesday.

05 December 2011

another busy weekend

it was a good weekend although it wasn't as much fun for me as it could have been as i was dealing with the worst part of my cold (coughing, very tired, achy and cold). but i'm not complaining - got up saturday morning and hit the road to mchenry illinois to visit robin's aunt and uncle. put cali down for a nap and headed to ikea for some gifts/stuff for the house. it wasn't as busy as i thought it might be which is always good. i'm always amazed at how many different languages i hear while at the shaumburg ikea though. anyway, after cal went to bed we had some nice visiting time. then it was up and at 'em sunday to get back home in time for my final 60 minute cross race of the year.

i had never been to hiestad park before and when i turned in i knew instantly this would be a tough day in the saddle. hills, hills and more hills! the climbing started right away after the start and i got out hard but under control because i knew if i wasn't careful i'd be gassed 10 minutes in. i probably should have gone a little bit harder but all in all i was happy. after the first ten minutes, i made a few passes but mostly just focused on holding my position. i did get lapped by several pro/1/2s but on this course (short and very hard) it should happened. a respectable 7th place finish on a tough course.

and now i'm already sick of hearing the office banter.

happy monday.

02 December 2011

cycleop-tor (buck-a-buck-a-buck-a)

we got a very spiffy brand new fluid2 resistance module yesterday for my very old fluid+ trainer and boy is it a lot nicer than what i've had. no request for the original purchase receipt (which i do not have), no inspection of the resistance unit, just a replacement. saris rules and for this reason alone it would be a sound investment to buy from them if in the market for a trainer. i rode it a very little just to feel the difference - night and day. the old resistance unit has been slowly leaking for several years - i wish i had inquired with them sooner!

my allergy appointment didn't go as planned yesterday (read: no ibruprophen challenge) so i had some time on my hands. i should have gone back to work but i didn't. i was feeling pretty lousy from this cold so i also should have gone home and rested. i didn't do that either. i kitted up and headed to badger prairie for some impromptu cross practicing in daylight. it felt good to get out and ride (even though i didn't feel well).

i rode in this morning and it was pretty cold (19 degrees when i left the house). i stayed pretty warm except for my feet but even that wasn't too bad.

happy friday.

01 December 2011

still under the weather

my ride home last night was enjoyable but after the endorphins faded i was left feeling pretty crappy. just a cold with aches and some congestion but by the end of a work day and some riding i was beat. i drove in this morning because i have an allergy appointment this afternoon - and i'm hoping to finally determine if i actually do have an adverse reaction to ibruprophen or not. i had an asthma attack as a kid shortly after taking ibruprophen and my doc then said i should just assume i'm allergic and avoid it. but my allergist is dubious and thinks i should do a challenge. as an athlete, i have been at a bit of a disadvantage not being able to take anti-inflammatory medication so i'm very excited to learn the result.

happy thursday.