Monday, January 30, 2012

Why has cycling, especially racing, become so elitist?

In 1987, when I started riding, and was getting into racing, finding a club and team to ride with was not a problem. I was living in Albuquerque at the time, and had no less than a dozen teams to choose from. I contacted them by snail mail of land line (hard to remember those days) and got the same response from every one “Sure, we would really like to have you on our team”

Fast forward to 2012.

Okay, I admit, I’m an unknown in the cycling community here. I got back in to racing in 2007, put out a few inquiries, but could not find a team to ride with. Really no big deal, I could deal with it. My work schedule was some what prohibitive, not really allowing me to time to “join them in a group ride to see if they would be a good fit”. (How many times do you see that? Why don’t the say “to see if you're a good fit for us”.) And I didn’t really have the opportunity to race more than two or three times a season. I just opted to ride with an out of town club who welcomed me, I had a team kit, and didn’t have unattached on my license.

Now things have changed. I know have a better work schedule, which will allow more time to do the  “check you out” team rides, weekend group ride, and racing. I’ve sent out I don’t know how many emails… and did not get ONE response.

I’m not a podium contender. I’m a cat 4, 54 years old, with few opportunities to race masters. I’m not looking for a free ride. I’m not looking for any freebies or reimbursements. I would like to  look at it this way. It’s not what you can do for me, but what can I do for you. I love cycling, I love to race, and only want to have the opportunity to ride with a local team and hopefully, in the process, get more people involved. One reason I was so excited to be selected as a Strava Ambassador.

Cycling has always been elitist, there is no denying that. Have someone come out to a a group ride on an old bike, or steel frame, and hairy legs, and immediate judgments were made. And I have been guilty as charged. And I will also admit something that others would not, those some of those we were judging as Fred’s could beat my ass in a New York minute. And after getting back into racing after 7 years off, I know how it feels to be the one judged. I was riding a 10 year old Giant aluminum. It was a sweet ride for me. Oh sure, I would have like newer and better, but it was out of my budget. And I saw the sneers, I know I was being judged.

I’m not a high budget racer. I don’t have a gold card, I’m not independently wealthy. I’m not a social butterfly. I just love to ride my bike, and ride and or race as hard as I can on any given day. But, it seems we have come to the point where it all comes down to who we know, how new and expensive our ride is, the gadgets we have, and what our power tap readings say.

Me. I ride and race a two old year BMC SLT01. No power meter ( I don’t have to drive myself crazy over analyzing the stats). I just depend on my outdated Garmin 305.  And my legs.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Day 4- Paleo diet

Day 4-

Up at my usual 430AM to hit the pain cave. I did feel a lot better this morning, and did get in a hard workout thanks to Sufferfest Revolver. I managed to average a hr of 155 for the 45 minutes.

So far no withdrawals, and I'm sticking to the diet.

And I'm down to 173!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Day 2- Paleo Diet

Decided it was time to make a change, besides, I need to be Speedo ready for our cruise next month. NOT!

I started the year hovering at around 180. I never got over 170 last winter, so I came in having some major overhauling to do. The holiday was hectic, lots of overtime, and lots of excuses to not ride when I got home, knowing I was going to be back in the office in about 10 hours.

A few years ago (well, 10 years ago) I weight 150. Thats down from 250 when I started riding in 1987. Despite being 150, I always carried that spare tire. Now its time to see if I get deflate it, and decided to start with the Paleo Diet.

Giving up whole grains and dairy products is going to be tough, and day one without sugar was tough. I was never really hunger, just in need of a snack. Thats where almonds become a godsend!

Last night was a light dinner, but it was healthy. I was also wondering if I was going to be able to stick to the plan. I started feeling a little sick to the stomach and was really worn down. One problem I had yesterday was I cut back to much on carbs. Gotta change that. Had a apple before bed, I was good.

I was up at 415AM to hit the trainer before work. One hour session of Sufferfest-HHNF. I mean, Sufferfest will have you crying for mercy on a good day. I was ready to collapse after this session!

After a couple of eggs and a banana I felt a lot better. So far today.. no hunger pains, and actaully, overall, feeling much better!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Made it... I'm a Strava Ambassador

"Is this a Strava Segment?" #shitcyclistssay

So, do you Strava?

My first introduction to Strava was almost two years ago. I was in the market for a GPS device, and my google search lead me to the Strava site. I found the Garmin Edge for 150.00, which even today, would be a great price.

Since then I have logged 494 rides for over 14,100 miles. Strava is a continued "work in progress" that is only getting better.

What do I like:

1) segments. This allows tracking your performance on segments against others, a virtual competition with others. This can help turn any ride into an interval training session as you hit various segments. Recently added was the ability so search and explore segments making it possible for you to find routes and segments that you could challenge yourself against.

2) the social-networking component. I find it interesting to see what types of rides other people in my area are doing, and to see who's riding my routes and segments, and allows me to find other ride routes.

3) Iphone and android apps for those who prefer something not bar mounted, and it allows you to save your ride and upload it when the ride is completed.

4) like having my training and workout information online, so I can access it from multiple locations and devices.

5) provides motivation to ride. Making something public motivates you not to be a slacker.

I do feel the club/team aspect is underutilized. I think this aspect has lots of potential and something I really want to push and get more interest in.

Yes, I use Garmin connect. Only because I am able to get reporting from their site.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions or suggestions!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Doing better this year

I started the new year at 182 pounds. Last year I never got over 170 during the winter.

Key factors this winter- work schedule combined with lots of overtime.

But, I’ve been committed. My weight is coming down, and I’ve been more committed to the trainer this year. It had also helped that we have had unseasonably warm weather, meaning more outdoor  rides than normal. So far, I’ve ridden 12 out of 14 days!

Pelotonia registration in complete , Here is this link to my donation page.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

More to come... these take forever to upload

First use of GoPro from David Buckner on Vimeo.

Just got back from my ride. We have a very milky sun, and I was freezing my tail. was still great being able to ride outside this time of the year!

I did get a handle bar mount and took video of most of my ride, but its taking forever to upload.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

PEZ Speak: Italian For Cyclists

PEZ Speak: Italian For Cyclists: Message by Corey Sar Fox
Here at PEZ, we are unabashedly Italo-philes. After the racing and the riding and the eating and especially the drinking, comes time to learn some of the language. While pointing and sign language are acceptable ways to communicate with accoLogoutmmodating Italians, throwing around a few choice words garners appreciation, throwing around cycling ones earns you Serious Bonus Points.

Pelotonia 12- New Route! I'm excited

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Jan 1- countdown to Armageddon begins

Not getting off to a good start, I weighed in at 182 pounds this monring. I've been putting in too much overtime, meaning I've got some serious pain cave sessions ahead.

I still find it hard to believe that I was able to ride, on Jan 1, with a single layer! Temp was at 50 degrees. Unheard of, unthinkable for Ohio on Jan. 1. But, those 50 mph gusts that we got just as I finished my ride means changes are coming. Still doesn't sound as bad as it could for this time of the year