Leftovers

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I still had a little bit more left in the tank for Monday’s lunch ride. For some reason we all decided to do the Day Road loop. I wanted to go easy, but the group kept splitting into two. I found myself bridging up to the breakaway, getting caught, then sprinting for nothing. It’s Monday for crying out loud, and I just raced yesterday. It was fun nonetheless.

RAAM

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I had the privilege of riding with RAAM (Race Across America) champion and current record holder, Cristoph Strasser, on our lunch ride today. He did it in 8 days, and is looking to break his own record in a couple of weeks. Best of luck to you, sir. He didn’t have much luck on our lunch ride, having flatted early on, but eventually catching up with our patient group.

Kings & Old La Honda

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I finally made the climb up Kings Mountain Road, onto Skyline and down Old La Honda. It was such a gorgeous day out, and a ton of riders were out enjoying the Memorial Day holiday. My iPhone randomly shut down halfway up Kings, so I lost a bit of the segment on Strava. I was bummed because I was feeling rather feisty, and i wanted to see how I stacked up to the competition. I was out on a recovery ride anyways, and I was just happy to be out on my road bike. I also got to sport my new red color-dipped helmet and matching S-Works shoes. So nice.

Zapped

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I don’t know what’s up with me today. I went for a ride at lunch and absolutely had no power or motivation. Eventually I felt better, but I either stayed up too late or am just too stressed out with work. This week especially has been challenging. Hope to turn it all around come the weekend when I race once more. This time up in beautiful Sonoma.

Simmer Down

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Today’s lunch was interesting. Lots of shouts from the group to either move to the right or left depending on the direction of the howling wind in an effort to organize a respectable echelon rotation. It failed, and some of us just wanted to ride and not get killed in the process. Eventually I peeled off having had enough of the tension forming within the group. Sometimes we take it too seriously to enjoy. I’ve learned to tune it out for the most part and keep within my limits.

Tempo Gone Wild

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Our Thursday tempo lunch ride was anything but Tempo. Maybe for the first 5 miles or so, but for some reason we decided to turn it up a notch and see who could hang on. I ended up trailing off the back, sucking the wheel in front of me all the way home. I didn’t feel like hammering, and needed to get some recovery and tapering before my race this weekend. I’m racing down in Monterey for another CCCX at Fort Ord.

Semi Day Off

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I was pretty cooked after yesterday’s gran fondo in Morgan Hill. However, I woke up feeling hyper motivated and got out for a nice spin around Crystal Springs. My legs felt decent enough to put in a couple of efforts, but I’ll be tapering all next week in preparations for another solid block of racing over the next few weekends.

The Bicycling Spring Classic

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Another big day of riding. I did the Bicycling Spring Classic, covering 90 hilly and windy miles of Morgan Hill along with a couple hundred of fast folks. There were three timed segments, and I managed to snag 5th overall in the KOM competition. The ride was swift and the pace never let up much, only to make a single pit stop to refuel. I worked my way up to the lead chase group, riding alongside Ned Overend, Rebecca Rusch and a few of my Muscle Milk/Specialized team mates. We crushed it for over four hours, averaging 21mph. Continue reading

Bike to Work Day and Back

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Today is Bike to Work day across America. I rode in from San Mateo, covering 71 miles with 4,000′ of climbing in about three and half hours. I started at 4am and made into work just in time for the breakfast feast beneath an official finishers line. Last year I missed the 9:30am cutoff time. I left extra early this time so I could partake in the spoils.

I took a new route down south, exploring the hills at the base of the mountains flanking the Peninsula. I went through Crystal Springs, Portola Valley, Saratoga and Los Gatos before cutting into Morgan Hill. A lot of great rolling hills and windy roads, all of which had hardly a soul driving them, granted it was 5am and the sun wasn’t coming up for another hour and a half or so.

The ride home was even better. I hooked up with a group that slow pedaled and chatted for most of the way into Los Gatos where we split up. I rode most of the way with my buddy Eric who eventually parted ways near Mountain view. I got to see all of the hills I rode over along with the epic views that accompanied them. 30 miles to go and it started to mist, which turned into rain and wind. I didn’t mind it at all. It was so fitting of the roads and scenery I was in.

Such a great day of riding. I loved seeing all the people joining the day, especially all of my coworkers that made riding bikes so special. I managed to get in with a rather fast average pace, considering I didn’t have to stop like every other half mile if I had taken El Camino Real and into downtown San Jose. Never again, knowing I’ve got an epic route alternative.