“Ability is what you’re capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it.” Lou Holtz

"I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand." Confucius

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Next Sunday's TT race

Hmm..question: do I really  want to do this?

and the answer is, naturally enough  "NO!".  however ..it's awful but it does you good.  

I  think.

Monday, 27 February 2012

2nd TT of the year and a change of coach

TT's that are set specifically  for Masters riders  tend to be fairly flattish.  The 2 TT's I've ridden this year with the Coburg Club have not been set for Masters riders.

Yesterday's race was from Cottles Bridge to Strathewen and back , starting off with a ~ 2km uphill grunt with a nasty tendency to get worse the closer you got to the top. 

...I'm not quite sure how I managed to have a loop on the map 2/3 the way in since it was an out  and back course...but ...

The fastest male was back in 34 minutes, I took 53.  I recall Steve Moneghetti commenting on how much admiration he had for the extra work, grit and determination shown by  those doing marathons in 4 hours against his 2 hours + a few minutes and wonder if these fast guys spare a thought for those of us slogging it out for that much longer in 30+ degree heat.  I somehow doubt it!

Not only was it hot, it was quite windy and  so the run out was much worse than the run home, by 7 minutes for me with a top speed of 66kph on the final hoon home.  I arrived at the turn around with a dead brain and promptly ignored any and all instructions from the marshall...not a question of DISobeying, more a question of "who are you and what are those flags in your hand and who am I and ??????". Whoops.

Best parts of the race: the cheer squad at the top of the hill on the way out, the downhill hoon and finishing!

When I got home the shower and nanna nap I was looking forward to suddenly took second place when I noticed the Flea the hunter had a wound  on his left hip and at 1330, I'd missed the local vet's Sunday morning surgery so we had to go off to the 24hour extremely expensive ($260) emergency vet clinic.

Many hours later I was home and packing up 2 parcels of things I'd sold on ebay.

Change of coach
After about 5 years with the same coach, I've opted to change  since I was more in need of face to face input and also was not managing the "ride to this wattage" approach.  So after a break of about 6 weeks I'm now back with a program.  Any change to training starts off bringing results since you are forced out of your comfort zone; hopefully this change will not only bring results immediately but also long term and will give me the boost I need both mentally and physically. 

Saturday, 25 February 2012

Just a bit of waffle on cats and bike bits

So cats don't have facial expressions?

 Caught unawares in a somewhat undignified position

now he's been alerted to the camera and and if looks could kill I'd be dead.

Helping the British economy

And yes, we do buy stuff on the internet when it's clearly cheaper and especially when  the postage is free.....
but when this wheel box arrived both Alex and I were a bit nonplussed since neither of us had ordered a wheel.  Delving down to the bottom we finally uncovered  the "black box" (!) containing an MTB bar.  Since freight goes on size rather than weight we think Wiggle must be coining big time.

PS...thanks Wiggle...I've just sold a wheel and the box will now go via courier to Queensland.

Preventing crossed eyes

Finding a saddle that suits is a long and arduous task for some:
  • For women this is even more of a problem, although there are fewer options on the market that could even remotely suit.  
  • Given the inherent problem women face then triple it, bold it, underline it and put it into italics for those of us  using  TT bars on track or road.   
  • Add to this the UCI ruling as to where the nose of the saddle should be (or not), 
  • and what a saddle should look like, it's length, angle etc etc
  • then consider the problems of those of us who forgot to grow long legs.
So what you're left with is a choice of about 2 saddles
this one:
 tried and failed.

or this one which  I'm now trialing:

looks weird, but time will tell.  More anon

Friday, 17 February 2012

Retail therapy or how to keep Australia's economy afloat

the above is my new bike as it is sold 

 ...however this is my new bike as I have it set up..there is a drop between seat and bars although it doesn't look as if that's so in this pix:

and the differences are:
  •  saddle...I've got  my Specialized Jett for now but to be UCI legal I will have to get a shorter one  Adamo or Fizik.
  •  drive train...durace not SRAM Force
  •  handle/aero bars
  •  head stem
  •  wheels
hmmmm so what have I kept?!...only the frame, fork and seat post, with the latter needing a bit of work to make it UCI compliant.

To afford this I sold a wheelset which has made it almost cost neutral, and with a few new things to put on ebay, as well as my old TT frame/forks/seatpost, I should be able to keep on helping Australia stay away from the fate of so many European countries.  Well...I guess when I'm over in Europe between July 13th and September 1st I'll be helping them too.

Liz Randall... philanthropist!

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Race schedule Feb-June 2012

26th - Cottlesbridge ITT. 24km. Coburg CC
4th -   Humevale ITT. 14km. Coburg CC. 1
24th - Winton ITT. 26km. Wangaratta CC.
25th - Masters Crit Champs Castlemaine
1st -    Cottlesbridge ITT. 24km. Coburg CC.
6-8th - Maryborough RR, 300m sprint,TT and crit
28th -  Warby Range ITT. 18km. Wangaratta CC.
6th -   Warburton/Donna Buang ITT
13th - Hume Vets ITT
26th - Boweya Rd ITT. 40km. Wangaratta CC.
9-11th Hume vets, RR,RR,TT,RR
16th -  Cloverlea ITT. Warragul CC.
23rd - Cloverlea ITT. Warragul CC.
30th -  Paraparap ITT. 20-28km?. CV/Geelong CC.

this is not set in concrete since many clubs are still to post their winter schedule, so there will probably some additions and some omissions...whatever, it should keep me out of mischief!

Still alive!

and Sunday's race wasn't too awful although hills are something I will 110% have to get into and vigorously too!

The decision to go with the road bike (1.5kg lighter than the TT bike) was, for me, the right thing to do as every time the road tilted upwards I was passed by the guys who started after me, although I was then able to claw back some time once the road levelled off again.

I would have liked 2 things to have been available..a toilet closer than 5km away and a coffee van in attendance afterwards!..that aside, a very good, honest, tough TT course.

And today I am testing a loaner Trek 7.8 TT bike since my current TT bike is getting a bit old.

Generally speaking this blog is more of a diary but today I'm incensed enough to go political.

UCI and it's affiliates rant..my own opinion

While searching for lightweight accessories for all my bikes I hit on Walser bikes and especially their  TT bars,  bar 2 of which weighs in at 1/2 the weight of my current Teschner track TT bar. So a rapid fire email is sent off and the reply sets my hackels rising since the UCI (insert irritable sigh here) are now legislating on the size of TT bar elbow pads and so "bar 2" is now illegal for UCI races. FFS.  grinds teeth

Then I read that Jan Ullrich who has been out of the racing scene for years has now been banned for 2 years and this includes Gran Fondos...again...FFS.  So years after the time he "sinned" he is being punished yet again despite the fact that Alberto Contador's 2 year ban is applied retrospectively and he will only sit out of racing for 8 months.  I guess one can argue  an amount of clenbuterol so tiny it's laughable against an acknowledged long period of doping but...Ullrich's doping was done when it was the "norm" whereas Contador's was not.....   I'm sure I read somewhere that if you took Ullrich's  tour win away from him you'd have to go as low as 10th to find someone who has not been convicted of doping......

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Sunday's TT

 how benign does this ride look!...so how come after yesterday's recce I'm totally stuffed? and how come so much of it shows up as being flattish when I distinctly recall something very different!!??

Too much training at the velodrome perhaps?? got soft.

The result of the recce is that the TT bike is staying at home and out comes the lightweight Baum steed.

If I'm still alive you'll get a race report.  no report =I'm no longer upright!

Sunday, 5 February 2012

January...a lost month

Vague health issues have blighted my January and training went down the tubes.
I'm okay now and yesterday raced the Victorian Master Track Champs...500m TT only.

I did 44.052sec which is somewhat better than at the worlds where I rode 44.716secs and is agonisingly close to the World Record of 43.838secs ie .2 second.

A while back I'd planned to go to the Nats in Sydney but last week I decided not to and am sticking to that plan despite the closeness of that result.   I'm now in road mode.

I'd like to thank CA for creating a rule to allow older age group riders to keep on being competitive.  For the timed events we race to a standard...yesterday to get to gold standard I had to be faster than 47 seconds. 

Shirley Amy and I are singleton racers in WMAS 7 and 8 respectively and yesterday we both earned our gold medals.  Standing on the podium with her is always a priviledge and together we represent 12 rainbow jerseys and 4 current world records!!!

Today's recovery ride was up the 1 in 20.  Yesterday I sold my Mavic Comete and IO wheels so now I'm off for some retail therapy...a compact camera, a torque wrench and torx bolts followed by  a new TT bike.  Woo Hoo!