Monday, July 30, 2007

Pantera, Pantera

funny how this should come up on autoblog today. seems like someone somewhere just can't get the childhood images of a bad ass exotic car out of their head and wants to create a modern de tomaso pantera. faithful recreation, i must say, and quite delicious.
i say it's funny because there has been a yellow '73 like this one rumbling around the valley lately. i was minding my own business when my ears were treated to that '60's muscle car v8 sound. upon turning my head, i saw the yellow car and instantly knew that it was no sissy lamborghini or ferrari multicam v8, but a genuine ford cleveland, inside the gorgeous de tomaso bodywork.

de tomaso was another one of those european manufacturers that sought engines elsewhere and came up with the ford 351c, similar to the high winding boss 351 engine. it takes a minute upon seeing a pantera to realize that it is not a ferrari, not a lambo. the sight is also accompanied by the sounds of a classic mustang or fairlane, so more adjustment is necessary. but, if you see one, keep looking. it only takes a minute to figure out that it is something special.

couples ride home

mrs k joined me for my ride home from work today. she has been riding a bit more often for the last few months, but we haven't been on a really long ride together for a while. the ride home, whatever way i choose, is between 24 and 26 miles. it's hilly no matter what route, too.

we looked like twinkies, dressed in our matching ghisallo kits. i attempted to roll like i always do, sleeveless jersey and team shorts, but she was having none of it. 'i want us to wear the team kits together!' she barked. yes, ma'am. we were two peas in a pod.

we actually made it home in the same amount of time that it takes me when i'm taking it easy. she really did well, even up the longer climbs. i have pretty much stopped thinking much about the ride while i'm doing it. after 30 or so times, you just kind of go on automatic pilot. but bringing her along reminded me just how UNFLAT the entire route is. she was beat but not beaten when we finished. job well done, i told her.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

me and my little buddy

the beautiful mrs k and i had to work on saturday and leave the little guy with a sitter. we usually feel sorry for sitters when they have to watch elijah for more than a couple of hours. he's a wonderful baby boy, but most people aren't prepared for the level of attention he requires. but, i guess that's what they get paid for, right? come to find out, he was pretty good for the sitter on saturday.

eli has had another ear infection for the last few days, so he has been particularly pissy. we've been giving him ear drops and it's helped, but that hasn't stopped him from being up during the night a LOT over the past week. rocky, our hefty dalmation, took that a step further and showcased an impressive case of explosive diarhea for us when we arrived home friday, and several times during the night, too. let's just say we have been quite friendly with bleach and strong floor cleaners this weekend. on the plus side, the floors have never been so clean!!

after a long weekend, mommy gave eli his bath and he sat with me at the computer for a few minutes. i showed him pictures on the blog of hanna, tyson, the dogs, and himself. that kept him quite entertained. i'm pretty sure he attempted to say 'rosco' when i brought up the little furry fella's photos. now he is sound asleep, and it isn't even 10pm. hopefully that means mrs k and i will get some much needed sleep tonight ourselves.

tdf withdrawals

i haven't missed one single stage of the 2007 tour. one way or another, i have caught sizable portions of the vs. coverage every single day, either live in the morning or the replay at night, sometimes combining the two to get the whole stage.

when i get to do that, i end up making new friends. sort of long distance friends, but by the 3rd or 4th day of the tour i feel like i know most of the guys in the race. by the start of the second week, i'm starting to live vicariously through them. when there is tension in the race, i feel it. when there is happiness, i'm happy, and sadness, i'm sad.

2003 was the first year that i was able to follow along, fighting tooth and nail alongside of lance and jan. in 2004, i was laid up with all of my broken bones, spitting and cussing and yelping with every stage, right there with lance and floyd, and having no choice but to respect our mutal rivals, jan and andreas kloden. 2005 had much less drama, and i didn't have cable, but i was riding right there while i read along on cycling news' live reports. i did the same in 2006, jumping out of my chair as floyd did this and as floyd did that. i wore out my computer mouse clicking 'refresh' every 10 seconds or so as floyd gained back the time he just lost. i was even late for work because i just couldn't leave until i found out whether floyd made it all back.

it may sound funny, but by the end of the race i want it to go on indefinitely. i don't want an end. the champs elysees is the last thing i want to see, because it means all my friends are leaving. this year, deanna followed along with me and my friends every day, and she piped up today and said she felt like she knew these people. so, i'm not the only one.

Friday, July 27, 2007

newsflash! mrs k turns into a cyclist

the beautiful mrs k commandeered the wednesday morning women's ride and dragged 10 enthusiastic women around chesterfield. she was so excited to have a nice sized group! she was just moaning the night before about how to get more women to show up. i told her to give it some time and i was right.

it seems as though she is really coming around in her fitness, enough so that she is very excited about riding and doesn't complain much about hills anymore.

that woman will be a cyclist yet!

old guy training stuff

this week was a good week for me. i did a smorgasbord of intervals on tuesday. my first course was 20 on/40 off, which i devoured pretty well. i rode from home to work, taking the long way through castlewood so i could do the intervals on keifer creek.

after the short intervals, i treated myself to 20 minute intervals. actually, 18 and 19 minute intervals, since it's nearly impossible to find that sort of uninterrupted road. those were harder, simply because i was calculating where and how to continue the interval without slowing or easing up my pace. the power meter has become and indispensable tool for things like this. i'm learning what good numbers are and what stupid numbers are. for me, most of the time 300 is a good number, and 600 is never a good number. good numbers are ones that i can sustain for a given period of time, not so good numbers, well, you get the picture.

wednesday was a knock down ride at the 'wood. i did every hill in the park and then did 'em backward, all the while keeping an eye on the effort so as not to blow. i was cooked. speaking of wednesday, i took my first vacation day of 2007. i rode, and then attempted to straighten the house. the house is still crooked.

thursday, i woke up tired as hell. i came so close to not riding, but i forged ahead and did my minute on/minute off intervals. turns out, i set a new personal one minute power record. the workout was fantastic, and the numbers backed it up. woo, hoo!

this concludes your mandatory old guy training seminar....

a night at the ball park

deanna took tyson to a baseball game the other night against the cubs. they had nosebleed seats, but beggars can't be choosers.
they got to pose with the world series trophy. mrs k did her best ray charles imitation. tyson didn't try to hide the fact that his shirt was of chicago nature. he was saved by it being red.

for some reason, tyson also posed in front of corky's hummer.

tyson couldn't believe that hotdogs cost THAT much.

the duo decided that hotdogs shouldn't cost that much and gave the vendor the raspberries. after the 7 to 1 loss by the cardinals, it seems to me they should've saved the raspberries for the home team and eaten the hotdogs.

rosco position #448

rosco is peeking out of his comfy spot on my bed with one little eye. he probably thinks that i can't see him.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

we KNOW...

...for SURE that this guy isn't doping. if he was, 1) he would have more energy to update his sorry blog. and 2) the woman in pink would probably castrate him. and 3) noone in their right mind would dope while wearing a 2001 schwinn homegrown jersey. it just wouldn't be fair.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Colnago Days

it's Colnago days at work this weekend. that means you get to come see the beautiful mrs k and i (and the rest of the gang) friday night for a presentation and some good fixin's. and you get to ride your favorite Colnago saturday. just thought i'd let you know. call us at ghisallo to sign up. besides, if mrs k and i are going to work on saturday we'd better see some people we know show up!!

blast from the past

in 2000, i raced for the schwinn homegrown team. it was a grassroots thing, so i wasn't exactly factory sponsored or anything. but i had a great year, winning the AMBC race here, as well as the AMBC race in kentucky and even the finals at Tour De Wolf in memphis. one of my best years.

my homegrown was a pretty peice of work. i sold it to a friend of mine. well, that friend brought it in to be worked on. this is it. it hasn't changed one bit. only the pedals. the rest of the bike is exactly the same as the day i sold it to him 7 years ago. it's even better than i remember. no wonder i was fast!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

tour day france

since the tour started a couple of weeks ago, our household has been glued to the tv most every night. yes, mrs k, tyson, hanna and even eli. eli mostly wrecks the place while we watch, but he is present.

i like the morning coverage, but we usually have too much going on in the morning and i have to cut it short of the finish anyway. but the weekends have been great. great as a fan, i guess you'd say. with eli having two mornings in a row to wreck the house, the house isn't so great. we watched on the edges of our seats on saturday as vino took the stage and all comers. and i watched with horror as kloden went down, and skeletor (i mean rassmussen) DIDN'T lose as much time as i hoped. forgive my harshness toward skeletor. i was a fan when he was a world cup off-roader, but not so much of a fan as he has turned to the road.

anyway, this morning was about the most fun anyone could have while watching tv. (debatable, yes...) the attacks and counters that were going on towards the plateau de bille were phenomenal. the mrs and i let out a great big hoot when contador swooped in and won the stage, and soler came in 3rd. we were a bit bummed for cadel, but happy that levi picked up his game and came in 4th.

there are no 3 weeks in television like these. even if you can't stand bob roll.

swing around fun town

the beautiful mrs k and i took the older kids to the thriving metropolis of fenton for a good time at swing around fun town. yes, i know even the name says fun. first, we plopped into the hopelessly unnavigable bumper boats. we sprayed each other with the water guns, bashed our boats into unsuspecting kids boats, and were doused by some kid whose spray gun worked so much better than our pathetic squirters. here, you can see that we are wet and happy.
after a few hits in the batting cages, we were dry enough to try the go carts. the kids were too small to drive themselves, so deanna and i had to be the drivers. my superior driving skills allowed hanna and i to pass mrs k and tyson and keep them at bay. (helping matters was her abnormally slow cart, which almost ground to a halt each lap as we went up the over-under overpass.) hanna and i did another session, holding the lead on everyone until the last lap, while deanna and tyson went inside to climb the wall. here, the happy crew readies themselves for some hot lapping. tyson, obviously having just swallowed a june bug, puts on his best available smile.

it's no surprise that hanna got the dark greek coloring from our ancestors, but she has taken the tan thing to a whole new level this summer with around the clock swimming. we didn't really understand the 5-point harness thing, so we buckled what we had and pulled them tight. this was the maggie moo's finest, sporting at least 3 or 4 horsepower. i was supposed to take a picture of mrs k and tyson, but we were wisked off the starting line and into the session before we could get the job done.

Friday, July 20, 2007

serious kids

i have no idea where our kids get their seriously competitive attitudes from....

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Plymouth GTX

in the latest issue of bicycling (or was it mountain bike action?) ryan trebon, who races for kona, has an absolutely amazing looking plymouth gtx. i think his is a '68. i found a picture of this one just by searching google for a minute. what a mean looking muscle car. it just screams tough. sports car it is not, but i sure do like to look at it. and i just love those letters...G-T-X.

life gets in the way

life has somehow gotten in the way of my entries here. that's ok, it's just hard to remember where i left off without actually reading up on myself.

mrs k and i have been thouroughly worn out by eli. he is so energized at 9:30pm, right when we are just about spent from the day. plus, with us both training, we don't have a whole lot of extra energy to chase him around while he destroys the house. he really does turn into the daddy's boy when i get home from work. that makes me feel really good. he's such a sweet little tazmanian devil.

my training this week has been exceptionally hard. harder than usual, i suppose is a better way to put it. i did long intervals on tuesday (good, hard), a killer hill ride with peanut on wednesday (great, harder), and a short, intense interval day today (good, hard). i'm ready for a rest, although i know i have made some major improvements. in last nights ride, my climbing was strong, and my recovery from the climbs was even better. yay, me!

mrs k continued her wednesday morning rides this week. she added a nice hilly loop along with the flat one that is usually in the ride. i think the combination of marathon training and cycling is making her out to be quite the tough one. i'm just waiting for the day that she pins on a number to do a bike race.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

pay now or later?

i had a 2-3 hour hard ride with intervals scheduled for saturday. i waited until mrs k and the kids were off to the pool and headed out. of course, by 1pm it was 90 degrees. but, it was a dry heat...

i went down to jeff co to hit some little mountains. it's so scenic down there, and the hills are plentiful. i pedaled into gravois bluffs off of 141 in search of saline road. i like the multiple walls along saline, especially trailer park, the 100 yard long straight up slog. i got cocky there, seeing 650 watts on the power tap. there is a saying that goes something like, 'you can pay now or you can pay later, just be sure to realize that you're gonna pay...'

the next stop, after climbing out of jeff co, was meramec bottom road to do some 5 minute on/off intervals. it was unusually busy, so i had to dodge and be dodged by cars. i didn't do badly, but began to feel the effects of the 650 watt nonsense on trailer park. i limped home up kerth and eventually through south county. this was definitely the pay later part.

i mowed the lawn as penance for my idiocy on the climbs. i hadn't mowed for a couple of weeks, and it was shin high in the back yard. no snakes, though. i had four yard waste bags of grass by the time i was done. i think i'll mow the yard more regularly. what was that about paying now or paying later?

Monday, July 16, 2007

bees in the trees

these little guys have made themselves a nice little home about 15 feet up in one of the enormous trees in my backyard. they haven't really been too much of a nusance up until now. they keep finding their way into my house when we open the back door, and rosco got stung by one this morning. i hate to eradicate such a useful part of nature, but they can be a bit scary to the kids and to small dogs with big tempers. maybe bugman can give me some clues??


rosco is taking a much needed rest on my pillow and eli's pajama's. it seems as though he has been battling with the bees in the back yard. so far it's bee's 1, rosco nothing.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

bike riding, training, yard sales

monday was supposed to be a tough ride, but it wasn't going to happen. not just because i was tired from the weekend, but because we've got a house full of kids. logistically, it was just too tough. so i rode the trainer after the kids went to bed. yeah, i know. but i needed to spin the legs out, and so i did. and i couldn't fall asleep until 3am. lesson learned.

tuesday the beautiful mrs k needed a run to happen, so i saddled up the kids and put eli in the trailer and rode along with her over to grandma's. it was a pleasant ride, with eli really enjoying himself. mrs k ran faster than normal, too, keeping up with us on our bikes most of the time. tyson yard saled pretty good about mid-ride, just too keep things interesting. a little road rash never killed anyone, right? after the kids were gone and mrs k left for work, i went for a very easy ride, only an hour. it was still a nice morning, and it felt great to be out on the bike.

today was a nightmare. hectic day at work, deanna had the women's ride in the morning, had a meeting with a rep at opening, kids were off to grandma's, family pictures at a two-a-day interval day. i didn't have enough time this morning to do my whole routine, so i cut it in half and did an hour this morning and and hour and a half riding home. multiple five and ten minute intervals, so i did the 5's this morning and the 10's on the way home. my power seems to be coming right along, and recovery is right there, too. i feel like i'm actually training instead of spinning cranks!

kid week extravaganza

heeeeeeey, what is that stuff? is that a cooked carrot? how many times i gotta tell you i don't like cooked carrots?
you! you put the cooked carrots in my microwave beef stew! i knew it! you with the camera!

aw, yuk, yuk, i get it. the jokes on me, huh guys? alright, alright. just wait till i'm old enough. i'm going to short sheet your beds. i'm going to put frogs in your shoes. i'll put ball bearings in your handlebars!

...but for now, let's all play with the trains.....

Sunday, July 08, 2007

family outing, bike racing weekend

after two hectic days at the store, the beautiful mrs k and i were very happy to be driving off to the lake again saturday night. this was a little different than last weekend, however.

first off, tyson and eli were going with us to the lake. second, we weren't going to the lake for recreation, we were going because it's closer to the jeff city mountain bike race. and lastly, sparky was going along with us. sparky is the bright-eyed, bushy tailed mechanic at ghisallo, and he also races mountain bikes. we invited him to stay with us at the lake and go to the race, too. he was smart, though, and followed along in his own car, the very manly new beetle. well, at least it's a turbo....

we couldn't even leave town on time. we had to eat. the rough day at the store sapped our will to move forward, so we drove 1 mile and stopped at IHOP to gorge on breakfast goodness. then we drove 1 more mile to stock up on snacks and water to amuse the kids (and me) while we drove. finally, we drove west.

I-70 is a most God forsaken highway. busy, dangerous, hilly, full of trucks, pickups pulling boats, and general mayhem. but we got to the lake in one piece, stopping at piggly wiggly (hyvee, actually) to stock up for breakfast.

God bless mrs k. eli didn't want to sleep. ever. he tossed and turned and squealed and cried and made our lives hell, but mrs k took him in the other room so i could sleep for 'the big day.' i feel guilty about it, because it's just another bike race, but she really wants me to do my best. eli kept me up quite a bit, but kept her up most of the night.

we made the race with no real trouble, only a brief stop at a gas station to grab cold water, which resulted in me smelling like smoke for the next hour.

we pulled up and immediately saw the kaiser there getting ready. there were plenty of people racing and warming up, so i got the butterflies pretty bad. deanna set up camp right at the shady start/finish area, and i went to warm up. the jeff city course is a killer single track extravaganza. no real climbing, but not one yard of flat ground. total single track. i don't know how long it is, but at full tilt it takes 29 minutes for me. i took a full warm up lap, not intending to but i didn't want to get off the trail. i finished up just in time to change into a dry jersey and get to the start line. oh, and a kiss from the family for good luck.

and, i won. it wasn't a very big field, but the fast guy in my class, who whooped my butt last year, was there, so it was nice to get vindication. and i nearly caught the first place guy in the younger age class, who started 2 minutes before me, too. so i got the fastest time of the day! yee haw. deanna and tyson handed me water all day, and they said eli really enjoyed the show. and sparky? he dnf'd his first sport race. ah, the new bike racer. so much to learn. the kaiser wasn't too happy with his race, but it was blazing hot and he isn't a fan of the heat, so i was proud that he finished. for me, the bmc performed flawlessly. who says long travel bikes are for freeriding?

afterward, we all hit wendy's (those are all closed in st.louis, you know) and chowed down. i was eyeing the kaisers chili/salad/salsa thing, but all i could get down was some chicken salad and some yogurt. we bid sparky and the kaiser goodbye and braved I-70 again. there were 3 accidents that we witnessed, but luckily the family truckster stayed out of trouble. (and i averaged 23mpg with 4 people and 200lbs of family travelin' cargo!)

Thursday, July 05, 2007

july 4th snapshots

this is elijah's expression for the better part of 20 minutes after the fireworks started. to say that he was transfixed would be an understatement. mrs k help her hands over the little guys ears, and his eyes darted to and fro with the flashing, booming light and sound show. a couple of times, he laughed hysterically and clapped, only to fall back into this state of awe. i watched him more than i watched the fireworks, because i've seen 50 fireworks shows in my life, but i'll only get to see this once.

july 4th snapshots

now gus, get your foot off the clutch pedal. no, no, that's the gas! it's the gas! if you goose it in the corners we're going to spin! pay attention!
dad, you got the gps? gus doesn't know a thing about directions! this thing keeps going in circles!

heeeeeey, gus, did you see the sweet little blonde in the double stroller? let's get another look at her when we come around!

july 4th snapshots

when does this thing get underway? do i have time for a potty break? will there be refreshments served?
whoa! who's driving this thing? nobody said this would be a runaway train!

whooooaaaa, cooool! it's a majic circus train! and my buddy max is riding shotgun. bring it on! more steam, captain, more steam!

july 4th snapshot

...if no one is looking, i might just take this thing for a spin....

july 4th snapshot

...hey, this finger is especially good today....

some hard sleepin'

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

documented proof

i stole this photo from someone who posted it for our viewing pleasure on stlbiking. it is proof that i in fact did race at webster. i look serious, don't i?? i also look as if i was put together by a young child, perhaps humpty-dumpty style...oh, these legs go with this body...wait, that's a very big body to go with those puny legs...

my training has been going exceedingly well. i rode home from work monday as a recovery ride, aided by the power tap. the numbers on the screen definitely reminded me that i press too hard, no matter what the conditions are. it took an extra 30 minutes to make it home, given that i averaged 14mph instead of the usual 18mph. hard to imagine thinking that the 18mph was actually a recovery pace!

while riding at castlewood today, i popped out onto ries road, at the top of the big climb, and saw ryan hermsmeyer just cresting it. i greeted him and immediately saw he was sporting the power tap. he too mentioned that sometimes listening to the power tap nanny meant a boring ride. but i also know that he has improved a lot over the last couple of years, so something is working for him. i bid him goodbye and went about the business of 20 minute threshold intervals, which i cooked quite nicely.

the bmc was flowing like water and i was, too. it's rare to have such flow and form on a hard workout day, but it happened. maybe that slow march home yesterday was just the sort of thing i needed. i finished the two 20 minute intervals and pedaled easy on the grotpeter, only to goof around and fall over on a normally quite easy section. it was a 0 mph fall, just that i stuck my bad leg out and, as usual, stiff-legged it to stay upright rather than just roll off the bike. i've injured that knee 3 times doing that exact same thing, but i was spared the humiliation of an emergency room visit this time. a little sore, a lot embarrassed. i need to learn a new response, perhaps landing on my head, which is quite a bit harder and heartier than my left knee....

Sunday, July 01, 2007

where oh where....?

the other night i got undressed, streched, brushed my teeth and almost got into bed when...rosco? rosco? where are you buddy? i guess he never came back in after i let him out last.

i went downstairs, peeked out the back door and in the dark i could see the little hunter crouched down on the edge of the deck. he must've had something in his sights, because the sound of me opening the door didn't phase him. i watched him for a minute, then grabbed the camera. he still didn't flinch. i let him be and grabbed a drink of water from the kitchen. when i got back, he was still in the same position. finally, i called him to come in and he popped up and came to bed.

he was looking pretty intense, but i guess bed sounded better.

i splurged

yes, i know that my kids need to go to college and we need a screen door on the front of the house...i need to get my 30,000 service on the family truckster...rosco needs his shots, probably rocky, too. but i've got a problem.

i always ride way too hard. i can't seem to ride at an easy tempo. if the road goes up, the pedals start pushing and i push back. i have no sense of exersion.

it's a lame excuse, but i need a coach on the bike as well as one off the bike. i have the regular coach thing covered very well, but when i'm on the bike, all of his great info goes out the window and i'm pinned again. i borrowed a power tap over the winter and i liked it, but shunned it because i didn't want to become addicted to it's info. after thinking long and hard about what i would need to keep me focused on the bike, i decided to get the whole shooting match again for myself.

i got the pro model, not the wireless. it gives you wattage, speed, cadence, heartrate, milage, and the max and average of all of those, too. the ride i did at the lake this weekend was a good, hard jaunt that was great to see graphed out on the computer once i downloaded it at home.

gadgety? probably. but if having something along to temper my bad habits is bad, i don't want to be good.

a weekend getaway

the beautiful mrs k and i took the weekend off. tyson and hanna were with their other parents, and katie and kevin took eli off our hands and we headed to the lake. aunt jane's condo, our little home away from home. right after work on friday we boot scooted outta there. it's a cozy little place with a lakefront view and lots and lots of twisty, winding roads on the way in.
it rained the whole time we were there, but it actually helped us to relax and do not a whole lot except hang out together. we ate mexican food, and barbque, and hamburgers. that was, of course, to replace all the calories we burned in our big saturday workouts. she had a 7 mile run to do and i had a 50 mile ride, both of which went very well.
we were even lazier sunday morning. i slept until 8:45, an hour that i haven't slept til since...since....hmmm. mrs k got up with me, then went back to bed until 10. i watched the chiller network on satillite tv. i watched cat people, rod serling's night gallery, and a little bit of a twin peaks episode.

on friday night, upon arriving at the condo, we sat on the deck and looked out over the water. i looked up to the rafters and saw these little lovebirds enjoying a piece of wire for a perch. they were quiet and still, hoping we didn't see them, i guess. we obliged and only took a photo or two and left them alone.