On my ride home from work heading to the bike shop I pass two buildings with cycling art. These buildings are about 40 feet from each other and now have nothing to do with cycling, one is a barber shop and the other is a woman's clothing store. I always wonder what they used to be, I assume that once upon a time they were both bike shops.
The barber shop. Specialized and Bianchi are listed.
I've always wanted to do a multiple day trip on the road bike, bringing a bare minimum of clothes and supplies, staying in hotels along the way. I have the perfect opportunity coming in the last week in September. I originally asked off from work to attend Xterra Nationals, obviously the race is not going to happen for me. So, what do I do for that week? Working is out of the question, how about ride my bike? The guys I work with at Highroller are planning to be in Little Rock on Sat. the 26th of Sept. for the Big Dam Bridge 100. Perfect, I can spend a few days riding down to LR and join them for the century on Sat. I mapped out the route the other day and it doesn't look as bad as I thought it would. At just over 200 miles to the outer city limits of LR, I will do 60 miles the first two days, 80 for the final push into LR. The final 80 miles are incredibly flat, actually I was surprised at how little climbing there is on the entire route. See it here. No doubt it will be the hardest week of riding I have ever done, should be just about 340 miles for the week. That's a lot of miles for me. I'm excited about my new adventure. Many road miles to come in preperation.
I haven't been on my mountain bike in over two weeks, I just haven't had any motivation to get out in the woods amongst the poison ivy, ticks, and chiggers. Actually, I recently put my mountain bike up for sale, if you need a 17" Stumpy 29er I'm your man. The bike has been up for sale for almost a week and I haven't received one single response. The only reason I am selling is to fund a road bike project, I want a new frame(read carbon).
I had a great ride today. I met up with some friends at Highroller this morning at 830a. Last week it was only Chris and me, this week I was pleasantly surprised to have six other riders show for the ride. The pace was under control, punctuated by city limit sprints and a few rapid hill climbs. My legs felt really good, most likely due to having a low mileage week. The total time was 4hrs and a total distance of 60 miles. Overall a great day in the saddle, I can't wait to do it again.
A shift in focus for this year, looks like I will not be at Xterra Nationals. Kind of hard to qualify if you don't compete in a single Xterra event. Health problems and lack of monetary funds have kept me from lining up on the starting line. I'm a bit bummed, but next year will be better in the financial category and the health issues are under control. There are still several mountain bike races that are local and one tri just 30 minutes north of Fayetteville, I plan to compete in as many as I can.
The Fourth of July weekend was superb. My parents came up from LA and rented a cabin just outside of Jasper. Like I have said befoere, Newton County is by far my favorite place to visit in Arkansas. I managed to squeeze in a solid ride into the cabin, the route passes over two substantial climbs and is the hardest 35 mile ride i've ever done. The first climb starts about seven miles in, it climbs up steep for a 1/4 mile and then levels off for about a 1/2 mile. Next is a ball buster, not sure of the grade or length but I can assure you it is not comfortable and lasts for way to long. The climb is straight up, no switchbacks here just an out of the saddle, legs burning kick in the junk. The rest of the ride is not that bad, there is a climb out of Boxley Valley but it isn't as gruesome. However, the road does pitch quite steep just outside Low Gap, but it is the last climb into Jasper so getting to the top seems like such a reward.
Most training lately has been on the road bike. I have the parts to fix my mountain bike, but I haven't gotten around to actually fixing the problem. 100+ mile weeks on the road bike are the norm, not much running or swimming and about one mountain bike a week is how my training is going now. The next four weeks have much more time spent running and swimming. Come November I plan to be under the guidance of Trevor Glavin.