Sunday, January 31, 2010

Its a road on google maps

I can't say much more than the title as it would give away the top secret meeting spot. Which caused a few to be late. I would have been on time if the drive thru at Tims wasn't so long. (for the record I purchased hot chocolate not their "coffee")

Matt and new MNS addition were there all ready to go, Tammy, Jer arrived shortly thereafter. Then into the woods for 3 hours of touring around trying to see how much climbing we could do, we didn't want to make Heather mad. Though not sure if Peter would be impressed, I guess you just can't please all the coaches. I was also under the impression the pace would be mellow and under control, I tried my best to stay out front, but new addition just kept charging to the front and kept the pace up, I think we need to draft an MNS constitution, or by-laws, or have people sign pacing agreements.

In the end we covered about half the distance of my snowshoe a couple days ago, but climbed 3x as much.

5th line "summit"

The Rescue of Tammy from the jerk bushes she tried to walk through

TRAIN !!!!!!!!

Was super tempted to hit Tara up after but I knew I had to get some fixins for dinner and when I walked in the door I got the "I know you where just with Molly for 3 hours and I was stuck in here watching figure skating all day" look. So I took the pup for a brisk off leasher through the bluffs.

Gonna sleep well tonight, first good solid structured week was good, got all the workouts in I had planned, with some creative scheduling. More the same this week,

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Good tired

With the arrival of a two day ice age it was down to rollers and snowshoes the past couple days.

Yesterday was a long steady snowshoes trying to maximize the distance through the bluffs without crossing my tracks. I was able to get 13.5 km in and think i could have gotten a little more distance in with some creative zigging and zagging. It was chilly for sure, but the sun was burning 100%, and with little wind I didn't even notice the temperature. Expect for taking off my gloves to refuel, I noticed the cold then.

This morning when i woke up i could feel that good productive fatigue in my legs. It was nice to feel that again, A little sore, but mostly just empty legs feeling. Its tough to explain the difference, but I was a happy camper.

Hit the rollers for some fast pedals (spin ups but longer) and some more single leg stuff, a nice warmup and I was back outside for a shorter snowshoe today. This time I gave into the puppy dog look and brought the angle with me. It didn't take long for her to start lifting her paws with a "frak this is cold" look, But shes a trooper and with her patented hop, shuffle, three good legs walk we trounced through the forest.

Long stretch session, followed by calorie intake.

I was planning on heading to the copeland tomorrow for some sort of snow based enduance, but couldn't decide whether to ski or snowshoe or both. Normally i would turn to my 8 ball in times like these, but a nicely timed phone call from Matt made the choice easy. Solo endurance hours or group endurance hours....mmm tough choice.

New top secret meeting location something about train tracks. Hey any opportunity to yell "TRAIN" I'm up for.

Looks like the Juniors stomped it in Tabor, Stafford had some bike issues and such and after 4 bike changes it sounds like he should be in prime shape for 2013 espoir worlds, Wonder where those are????

Ok so, umm, yeah,

Thursday, January 28, 2010

You win this round winter

Been a couple days, i've been trying to get into a every other day posting. Fell short yesterday, But training is getting off to a good start.

Last I left you I was heading to bed for a nap before getting up later that night at 4 am to head to the bike park for 6 am. Apparently I'm good at just wandering around aimlessly in the background so I convinced Jeremy and promised him i'd have him back in town for him to open the shop at 10 am. It was an early morning but we made it there at just before 6 to see the parking lot well on its way to being full. Rolled in and people were already all over the place. Appearances by the likes of Sam Rykoff Jamie Davies, Shane, and a little late Havy rolled in as well.

I got changed and headed to the foam pit immediately before it got too crowded. I think this will become a tradition before anything else. Then just started touring around, in the hoards of media hogs out there. I actually forgot about the whole breakfast television aspect of it and just enjoyed the early morning fun. I think they were a little late anyway. Around 7:30 the call came down that I was going to have my 15 seconds of fame, giving them an XC angle on the place, I said I had to jet at 8:22, no problem. Well with live tv nothing goes to plan and It was pushed back. Really it was just a big Norco ploy to keep the competition from opening. At 8:45 I got my 15 seconds and by 15 seconds I think it was closer to 12 seconds before the camera's turned back to the foam pit.

Got changed quick and jetted out of there and onto the 407 to get Jeremy back by 10. Almost made it, I think I did set a new joyride-Barrie record though.

I was pretty much toasted from the early morning and just laid down for a minute to rest my eyes. Yeah, after waking up I changed my calender around.

Yesterday.... oh yeah was an indoor specific ride, lots of coordination, single leg pedaling and spin ups, followed by a steady endurance effort. Its about as exciting as it sounds, but i just keep telling myself only another month at the most and it will be all clear roads and butterflies.

Had a long x-train endurance day planned today, well after the weekly shuffle it was. With sunny clear skies, only -8 I was tempted to do a vast majority of it out on the roads. But I had a stop to make out at Hardwood today anyway so i loaded up the skate skis and headed out to Oro. As soon as I hit the 400 it was blowing almost white out conditions, which made for a slightly longer drive out. Made it intact while listening to all the collisions on the roads. Chatted with Jacob and played temperature mind games with Jack for a bit, if your watching the olympic coverage next month and Jack Sasseville starts getting all confused about temperatures and plus and minus, my bad.

Continued on my journey to Horseshoe, as soon as I pulled in regretted not bringing my classic skis and or the snowshoes. Compared to the dusting in town they had a good six inches of powder on top of the trail. Well when in Rome, I stepped into the skates and just went with it. Aside from making for some tough going it was really nice and soft. Easy on the joints for sure. Some of the trails were packed well by the school kids who thankfully didn't stick to the tracksets. I did some loops and even made my way up and down gunthers in the powder but in the end i cut my losses and headed back home to salvage a workout at home.

When I arrived back I realized it was a good thing i didn't head out on the bike, as the storm arrived after i left and left a nice coating of snow. Not a lot but enough. I strapped on the snowshoes ignored the stare of death from Starbuck and headed into the bluffs for a couple hours. One big loop over to Ferndale and back at LRP (Liz Ross Pace) and i was heading back, when I was crossing Mapleton I could feel the temp had really dropped and with the wind it didn't take me long to duck into the woods for shelter.

After some problem solving I got the hours in I wanted so, it turned out to be a great day. From now on I'm bringing everything including the kitchen sink out to Oro.

This is dragging on so Ill leave it there.

Monday, January 25, 2010


Backing up to yesterday, was another trip to the bike park. Still good, actually had some new features. Got there pretty much right at 10, in time to hit the foam pit early before it filled up. I was able to convince Tammy, but not Jeremy to hit it too. First attempt used the easy line to just get a feel for it. And by feel for it, ride into it and endo. That was the easy part, getting out is an ordeal on its own. I managed to clear the way for Tammy who unleashed a nice tailwhip 360. Hit the blue line next which gives you much more kick. After that i dragged myself out of the way and let the youngsters have at it.

I started my watch and headed out onto the xc loop to start a longish steady ride, I used the skinnies, and pump tracks to make a 6+ minute loop, with the place filling up fast i kept it flexible and just kinda went where people weren't. As long as i was moving and pedaling i was happy. One or two little breaks here and there, one feed, and i was done the business end of it.

Just started touring around after that, ran into some people i knew, Rick and Jamie, hit the foam pit one last time, and developed my own trick its called a 2x90. Basically consists of a 90 degree lateral rotation, followed by a 90 degree roll. Pretty sick. There are rumours of a video of it, but i haven't seen it yet.

Another good day on the mtb in January.

Today, I was pleased to not be sore at all, I think i was way more relaxed and used to the place. Granted there was no tire buzzing and wall bouncing on the xc track.

Semi-rest day, but i did get on the rollers for a while for a warmup and cooldown with a core and strength workout in the middle. Follwed by some shovelling and clearing some snow while the getting is good.

Heading back to the park tonight, well I consider 4:45 am, tonight, not sure if I should just not go to sleep. So if your up and watching the tube between 6 and 9 in the gta tune to breakfast television to see whats going on at Joyride.

alrighty then

Saturday, January 23, 2010

p.s. if you've been reading this and the pic at the top keeps changing my apologies i'm trying to freshen it up with a trial and error process.

another goal for the next little while get pictures of rollers, xc skiing and snowshoeing

Bricks and Mortar

Good couple days getting back to some structure as opposed to just trying to stay active.

Yesterday after a trip to the vet for my rabies shot, and a little procrastination I got out on the classic ski's in the bluffs, ok not much structure there not to mention the less than ideal conditions for the waxless ski's. Ill admit I have little to no classic ability or knowledge of proper technique, but I could not get any no matter what i did. Almost stopped and put some sap from a tree on my ski's. Actually the super packed trail looked prime for a mtb ride, but i was out there on the sticks so I made due.

Today was the first ride in a while I went at with some key objectives planned, time, effort and HR, choose a pretty standard rolling-hilly route out into Essa up to 90. Where the historic battle of hwy 90 took place between Springwater and Essa, in the end it was declared as part of the armistice that "Hence forth all roads that cross highway 90 shall not meet up and cause the horse and thy that they carry to zig then zag". Or something like that, Headed up the long drag that is sunnidale to Barrie hill farms road, out the new Carson, through Midhurst along ski trails road to the third and back in via ridge road (rail trail is looking dodgy on a road bike these days).

The sun was shining there was very little wind, roads were clear, couldn't ask for more in January that for sure. As for the objectives, time was easy, the effort and HR was a tough cookie to keep in check. But I just kept thinking back to when I was a wee lad heading into the 02 season and started really training. I'm still in better shape now than that but the principles are the same, rule #1 Base is the most important thing to an athlete, Rule #2 It can't be rushed. oh and rule #3 Don't talk about FACT. Back when I was starting into this training thing with Steve and FACT, he always said (when i was trying to go all Ricky Bobby on him) if I can't keep my hr where it should be get off and walk. And I did on occasion, granted I was pushing 160 pounds then. Yes it was painful but it paid off huge later down the road.

It wasn't that desperate today, I was able to just gear down and spin up the climbs, my Finnish friend only yelled at me once or twice. The first 60 mins or so I wasn't feeling to hot but by the end I was feeling a lot better and finished the 180 mins off pretty strong. Took the hard man climb again back home, and didn't almost fall over.

So the schedule is all set, printed off and posted on the fridge, feels good to get back to something like that rather than playing it day to day.

Tomorrow Joyride mission, then it looks like back to winter next week, with minus double digits later in the week, hopefully get some more snow too so the big groomers can get out on the ski trails.

"You know ........ ....... when i first started coaching him he would run at night so people didn't see him walk up the hills" that always stuck with me

Thursday, January 21, 2010

thanks for the lead

Well, the sun was shining and my ski's were begging to be scraped and used, taking some advice from a reader, I just packed the skate skis and left the classics at home.

Rolled into the shoe after a few stops in town, dropped my windstopper jacket off to have the zipper replaced. Using big safety pins was getting kinda old and painful.

As i was putting on my ski's I was asked again to see my pass, this time the gentlemen was super nice and assumed I had one instead of assuming I was pooching, but I get the feeling they are really trying to crack down.

The conditions were good, firm snow fairly well groomed for skating, I could tell the trackset left a little to be desired with only 15 cm base Its tough to not hit the dirt every once and a while. Did a few laps each of the medium loops on the north and west sides. Lots of people out today, always seemed like I was passing or being passed by someone. It was nice, sometimes you feel like you might as well be on the moon out there.

Plans are formulating for a joyride assault on sunday, and by assault I mean a few xc spandex wearing people doing multiple laps of the xc course. Gonna see if I can do a 2:05......yeah no.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

the past few

The past few days the weather has been smiling on us "northerners", well north of 89. With lots of sun and little to no new snow in a couple weeks it has been prime for just about whatever you want to do. I'm really glad I got that new fancy gas can for christmas for the snowblower considering i haven't even gotten through the gas from last year still in the machine.

I got out for a nice shanty bay road ride. I usually head out into Essa in the winter to avoid riding across the city but with the clear roads and a stop at the shop to drop something off I just kept going out ridge and back. It was overcast but, using my highly scientific thermometer(water bottles) I can tell you it wasn't below zero. Good ride very refreshing to get out on the road for a nice steady effort. Coming back up Mapleton I was in a world o hurt though, legs felt like bricks, but i made it up and home.

Snowshoe a couple days ago in the copeland via the 5th line. There is still plenty of snow in there to make the snowshoes useful, the title of the event was actually "is there any snow left". There was and we, meaning the guys, fell in line behind Liz who led the way using some sort of internal navigation system. There's no getting lost with Liz around, which is comforting as Copeland is pretty big and not that it would be life or death but you could be in there for a while going in circles at night. And with Molly in attendance she would probably try to get you lost to extend the outing.

Yesterday, I loaded up my mtb and shot down to coulson to see what i could do in there, i kept my hopes in check but it turned out to be not half bad. There was a hair to much snow for some of the trails, but there were some nicely packed singletrack and doubletrack sections. I was able to put together a 15 min lap, probably would take 7 in the summer. Turned a bunch of laps of that, basically until I started to make stupid mistakes and couldn't stay on the trails. The bike is working well, I've had to twek the shifter barrels a bit, thats normal.

Trying to stay cautiously optimistic about feeling better, its the longest its been without feeling any ill effects.

Gonna get out to Horseshoe for a ski in the next couple days, hopefully they have been able to groom, may be a long shot with the thin snow coverage.

Also have this itch i may need to scratch which may or may not involve an indoor bike park....


Saturday, January 16, 2010

better late than never

Just returned from a trip to joyride 150, I know I'm probably one of the last people in a 400km radius to report this. Well it was worth the wait(to go) what a blast, I went in not hearing a single complaint about the place and thought it can't be that good, come on. But it is everything you here about, as soon as you walk in the door friendly faces, warm greetings, easy first time waiver membership card etc stuff, and bam your hucking and doing transfers. Well if thats your thing, Matt Tristan and I opted for a tour of xc loop with hardman Mark Summers, read this for full story. And by tour I mean him killing it and me trying to remember how to turn a bike around a corner.

The xc loop really impressed me, it feels longer than it is and its never boring you always have something coming up or a tight corner to negotiate. A couple multi line things some bermed corners and your were done like dinner, very intense, and it takes some getting used to bombing around immovable objects at speed, trees I'm used too, steel supports not so much.

Next up the skinnies, a bunch of multi line log, wood structures to challenge your balance and confidence, fun but only so many different options and I believe that is the intermediate section and they are building an "expert" section in the future(I could be wrong) Next a couple runs of the beginner jump line, Complete fail on my part, Matt was getting some good style points here.

A couple more xc loops which included my overconfidence in my ability to corner on slick concrete slide out. Walked it off, couple rug burn type injuries. Tristan then went to the front and started to hammer the pace, I was started to get freaked out, there was lots of buzzing tires and a couple wall bounces, but amazingly no more bails.

Pump tracks were challenging and very tiring, I was feeling pretty good today, but i could only handle a couple laps before pulling off for a breather, noticed the kids on dirtjump bikes and bmx's were absolutely ripping the pump tracks, thinking the xc bike with the saddle maxed out may not be the best setup.(not to mention the rider)

Had the chance to take out a (Norco) dirtjump bike for a little rip, night and day on any of the pump track, jump lines, easier and more comfortable on the pump tracks and I ,yes me, outspoken advocate of keeping wheels on the ground, even found myself on the intermediate jump line. Leaving the ground and returning on the transition. Pulled myself off before i got to confident and hurt myself.

Left the foam pit for another day, didn't want to show any kids up or anything. In total a couple hours of fun, looking forward to going back, its not too far, but far enough that its not close. With a good carpool i think jumping on the 407 may be best.

Hats off to the Summers family and any others involved with the building, design and overall goodness.

Think any of those kids would like to trade me a dirt jump bike for a fixie? mmmm.

Weather is looking good for a possible outdoor ride tomorrow. And some more in the next week or so if the forecast holds(which it won't)

Thursday, January 14, 2010

ducks in a row

The past couple days I’ve been doing lots of little time consuming things you would think would be simple I’ve dealt with customer no service with more businesses than I can count, and I think I'm getting there a couple more long wait phone calls in the near future but the worst is past I hope.

On top of this on Monday morning my beloved 4 years+ old Toshiba laptop kicked it. It was giving me some signs of impending doom I backed everything up (I think) and let it go. I considered briefly looking into fixing it but to even get it checked is probably more than I’d want to spend on it. At 256 mb of ram and earth shattering 100gb hd, dead battery, burnt out dvd drive, it was time, that said it still did the job. It will be missed. Already hating this cramped keyboard with a full number pad on the right, smallspacebar, kind of like breaking in a new saddle. Though I will say this windows 7 is pretty slick, I missed out on the vista era and I think I’m better for it.

Training wise I’m still trying to kill this bug, I’d say I’m more exercising really, went for a ski it was good to get out there but it took no time for my finish friend to start yelling at me. I don’t even think i got out of the car and my hr was 165. Been doing some rides on the rollers focusing on coordination, again the hr is insane, getting pretty close to seeing a doctor. I hate going to a clinic for a cold but a 3 week cold that just never ends is pissing me off.

Haven’t had a good rant in a while,

Back to another topic I touched on a few weeks ago regarding extended warranties on computers and such and why they are a huge ripoff. After the staples debacle/scam plus they have very little choice, I headed to future shop this time around. Nice sales person helped me out, didn’t try to upsell me or anything on the computer, I was pretty upfront with my limited needs with a PC. I went with another big T. Checking out I knew it was coming and just smiled and kept quiet as he explained the extended warranty. Very politely I asked about some of their policies and explained the situation at staples.

Which was to recap, the motherboard and hard drive were fried and instead of fixing the computer they instead bought out the warranty for 220, but the warranty itself cost 120, so really only about 100 bucks. And they kept the computer. So really for the same reason I’m not fixing my other laptop they don’t fix them either they just give you a store credit for a small amount towards another computer. Which they get to sell you another warranty on. Its smart on their part don’t get me wrong I’m not business man but they would have to be stupid to actually fix it.

After explaining this to the salesperson explained they don’t do it that way and they don’t buy you out. Etc etc, they are different etc etc. The cost of the 2 year warranty would have also been more than 25 % of the cost of the computer. I said I would think about it, you can buy the warranty up to 30 days after the computer. Once I read the fine print sure enough they can buy you out at their discretion or give you a refurbished computer, at which point the warranty ends.

Now there may be instances where the insurance may be useful, I think if you were buying a 2000 dollar laptop then maybe. But to buy a $550 dollar laptop or a $450 desktop, then to pay another 25-30% on an extended warranty that you are guaranteed to get bought out of as the computer will be obsolete after 18 months, is just a waste of money in my opinion.

Don’t take my word for it ask some of these questions when buying a computer for yourself, when you cut down to it, what they promise is to good to be true.
K, im off my high horse now.

The mtb is all built and ready to go, she’s a mutt there’s everything from deore to XTR on it, crazy light wheels, some heavy steal parts, but I think she’ll be another ever ready bike for years to come.

Plans are in place for Saturday morning journey to Markham to see what all the fuss is about, probably wear my free ride Norco jersey to make sure I fit in.

Monday, January 11, 2010

looking back

This evening I met up with some fellow mns'ers out in the heart of Oro for some snowshoe fun. I realized it was about 3 years ago to the night that all the monday night craziness started, then it was actually a ride out in midhurst, i think we were wearing arm warmers and knee warmers. Im not drawing any conclusions from that regarding weather patterns.(not in this post at least)

A good sane pace, I think Liz has learned her lesson. Though after some Spak/Jacob comments she sped up a little for some reason.....

Before heading out I hit up canadian tire for some nuts and bolts(literally) for my build. A quick stop at chapters to check out the newest issue of Triathlon Canada magazine. I was told they had a little writeup about the toronto uci races and thought i'd check it out. I realized cross is almost two thirds triathlon, im going to get shot for that comment. Im also considering a change into Triathlon this season.

Yesterday i did some good coordination work on the rollers, spin-ups and single leg work. Still not 100% but everyday i feel a little bit better.

Plans are in the works for a trip to a certain indoor bike park in the gt of a this weekend. I could always use the singlespeed but i have a little more incentive to get my geared bike up and running.

Not much else to report

Saturday, January 9, 2010

you can call off the search

Well apparently this blog means a lot to some of my readers and my absence has caused much speculation, conjecture and inaccuracies.

No big story still trying to kick this marathon cold. Not a whole lot to say more than that. Didn't think readers would like to hear about the mucous colour of the day type stuff.

Starting to feel a little better, i have changed my strategy of rest to training really hard. Telling my body who's boss is the plan. So far so good. Any semblance of top end is long gone but on the plus side i feel rested in some ways, legs definitely feel fresh.

I've been trying to spend as many hours outdoors as possible, mostly snowshoeing. Monday i even got out with the MNS, in the wilderness "trails" for a bit.

After missing new years in the Waub i was peer pressured into attending a bike build seminar last night. It turned into who can deliver the lowest blow kinda night. Solved many of the cycling industries problems and I even rounded up some more capital for my eventual buyout of Shimano bike division. Almost there only a few hundered million more and i can carry out my plans.

Plans are being formulated for an escape from winter in february/march. Still trying to work out the details but its looking good.

Looks like almost everywhere in the northern hemisphere is in a chill right now, I've stocked up on a years supply of orange juice already.

until next time

Friday, January 1, 2010

Day : i don't know

Not a whole lot to report, still under the weather, and on my last post i described the time-line well. Things were changed up this time, including almost passing out and getting cold sweats for the first time in my life. Its a freaky feeling, your freezing cold and your sweating buckets i was actually scared. Thinking i may have a touch of the swine.

That was yesterday morning so i called off the nights festivities that were planned in the waub. I was able to stay up to ring in the new year with espn2 and watching wonder boy, do a ramp to barge rally car jump to set a new world record. To be honest i bet charlie 10 bucks he wouldn't make it or would crash hard.

going through my records its Pete Glassfords birthday today, happy birthday Pete.

snowing lots(for this year at least) hopefully i can get outside and get back on the skis sometime soon.