Thursday, January 31, 2008

for brian

.....and smoking the refer.





collar bone delights! caution, slight gore ahead!

delightfully nasty xrays of corky's collar bone, pre fix. lot's of small pieces strewn about in there.
nice piece of metal, complete with screws. they just discarded some of the little insignificant pieces and took the sledgehammer approach.

the gore. i don't like what the human body looks like inside. it's ugly. but, in this case, at least it's a little high tech, don't you think?


have pigs begun to fly?

i never thought i'd see the day, but brian and i found this blog after the pat told us he had one.

in the flesh, it's THE FOO

and it's pretty good reading. it seems he is doing alright and even has a new family of sorts to hang with. drop him a line, wish him the best.

my baby


is 8 years old. i love this photo of her laughing. it's her favorite thing to do. seems like it was just yesterday i watched her take her first steps. now she's the busy socialite on her way to superstardom.

now THAT'S a wagon!





i stole this from autoblog.
if you gotta have a wagon, why not go big? plymouth gtx wagon, complete with 440 six pack under the hood. i could do without the modern bling-machine wheels, but the rest is okey dokey.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

i thought i was coming down with something...


i have been quite ill over the past few days. wouldn't you know it, after such a good trip and great training, i get pneumonia. i feel like a truck has run over me. it's awful!
all i want to do is sleep. i slept most of yesterday. i slept last night, although fitfully. i've been sleeping this morning. and i'm still tired.
ah, this is my life.

off-roading

on the last day of my tuscon vacation, the pat came by to take brian and i mtn biking. the weather was sketchy, with rain and clouds and wind. but it was very warm, and tuscon is nothing but sand anyway, so what the heck?

we went to the same trails that i rode back in 2004 when sram invited me out to ride the then-new reba and pike suspension forks. it's a cool, twisty trail with a few crazy rock outcroppings. the pat loaned me a scott spra-kaa, otherwise known as the spark. the rear suspension didn't work, but the front did, and the brakes worked, so that was all i needed. brian was rolling the 2001 homegrown, pretty much frozen in time from 2001. the pat was on a long travel scott, and he led the way.

i was beginning to come down with something. i felt it in my chest and my throat. great. 220 miles over the last 4 days and i was getting sick. it didn't matter, though, because it was the first time i had been off-roading since november and i was loving it.

the trail hazards were clear: cactus. neither the pat nor i needed to worry, as we seemed immune to the deadly cacti that lines every single inch of the trail. brian, on the other hand, had three incidents with the prickly beasts. by the time we were done, i told brian he should use an asbestos suit next time.

we bid the pat farewell, and we jammed back to the apartment to clean up so i could make my plane back to the stl.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

the shootout

saturday mornings in tuscon are for the shootout.

the shootout is a big group ride that leaves from the university and goes south.  regularly, it is a huge ride.  this time, there was about 120 people on the ride.  it starts early, too.  7:30.  you know, when it's still 39 degrees and you have to wear all kinds of winter wear, when you came to a warm place to ride in warm weather.

we rolled out of town on bad pavement and worse riding.  as many bad ass riders as there were in the pack, there were just as many squirrels.  trying to avoid deep holes, cracks, creases and rocks on the road was just as hard as avoiding the swerving of the riders who were strong enough but not skilled enough.  somebody freaked out in front of me, i body slammed him, staying up but i was body slammed by another rider who went down.

i stayed in the group a little longer, then just popped.  i waited a minute, then caught on with a good group that pacelined some killer rolling roads all the way back to the main field.  brian joined us and kept the guys (and one girl) in line.

i was in no mood to ride, being tired and worn out from the last few days, but we completed the ride with no more incidents.

after the ride, we drove the convertible, top down, up to mount lemon.  what a beautiful place to be in.  great views.

we vegged a bit more, watched super troopers again, and went to dinner at yet another phenomenal mexican restaurant.

tomorrow, a short mtb ride with the pat and a plane ride home to see my beautiful mrs k.

Win some ROL wheels!!!

the hotness!  c'mon, get you some hotness!

my vacation continues

friday's ride was very interesting.  it went out of town in a different direction, and brian called it the big square ride.  i really didn't see much square about it, but it contained my favorite hill i have ever done.

just a bit after leaving the heavy traffic of tuscon behind, we started into gates pass park.  there was about a 5 mile lead in of climbing that was just steeper than false flat.  that was cool with great scenery.  once inside the actual park, the road narrowed and began to kick up to real climbing levels, and i started my lance armstrong imitation.  the hill was perfect for 100rpm climbing for about 2 miles, which i rarely get to do for such extended periods.  it would kick and mellow, kick and melow, but still at a fun grade, beyond my much hated false flat level.  finally, it turned upward to obscene levels and it was on.  it topped out soon afterward and went downhill.

we had a great ride for about 3 hours, despite really, really rough pavement.  after that, i was in the pain cave and very uncomfortable.  brian was fine, and did most of the pulling.  we stopped at pat collier's bench and soaked in a power bar and the sun.  on the ride went, well into the 4+ hour zone.  we ended the ride with 5 sprints.  i'd like to tell you that i mopped up the floor with brian in the sprints, but he got better and better each sprint until i barely beat him on the last one before we reached home.

pizza and a movie, ah, the life.  we watched boondock saints, which was good.  then out for japanese food with the pat and his wife.   we were beat when we got home and hit the hay for the shootout on saturday.  all told, i had 170 miles ridden in 3 days.  yikes.  

Thursday, January 24, 2008

puttin' in the miles

after a great breakfast at einsein's, brian and i set out to put in some miles.  we rode with the massive wind, which always raises a flag in my mind.  you have to pay the piper sometime.

after a few miles, it was a very slight incline for nearly 20 miles.  that sort of blows my mind.  at the end of that rainbow, it was downhill rather fast, for about 5 straight miles.  the goal was to turn around there, head uphill for 20 minutes, rinse, spin, repeat.  great.  i have been wanting to climb like that for a long time.  brian and i had different goals.  i was going for some threshold climbing, he was going for strength efforts.  the climbing part was fun, because i could sweat.  by the end of my effort, i was dripping and happy, as i had busted out with something like 300 watts for the entire effort.  my second one was much more mellow, but turned out ok.  i will be very happy to see the graph of the efforts when i get home.

brian was waiting at the top for me after my second effort, a victim of his rickity knees.  i have complete sympathy for him, being a fellow rickity knee owner.  so we started back, buffeted by the massive headwinds.  we stopped at a quaint little dive gas station that charged us .35 to fill our water bottles and hit the road again, just after brian used the outside wall as a porta pottie.   
so we had 20 miles of rolling downhill.  not enough of a downhill to help us against the wicked crosswinds.  nothing froze toes has ever dished out could prepare me for this kind of vicious cross wind.  add to this the bite of the temperature, and the stings of the occasional minute long rain showers, and it was quite challenging.  with about 8 miles to go, i hit the wall.  i kept going, but brian clearly had left his knee problems on the hills and pulled me along a helluva lot more than i was pulling him.  70 miles, 4 hours, a bit of wind burn on the face.  as an aside, i love my orca.

happy to see the house, we dressed and bolted across the road for mexican.  fat and happy, we vegged in front of the tv for a fantastic viewing of super troopers.  an incredible dinner at a really great burger place, again leaving fat and happy.

still missing the family, still wondering if vacations should ever be taken without the important people you leave behind.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

tuscon tim

i got a message on my phone today from dan calling me tuscon tim.  i go on my first vacation in a couple of years and i have a nick name.

i got up at 4:55am.  i took my sorry butt to 7-eleven to use the atm.  i got to the metro link station at 5:20, in time to get a ticket and sit down...and remember i had to validate the ticket.  why?  and why do i always forget.  i didn't forget that it was 14 degrees as i ran back down the stairs and validated the ticket, and got on the train just as the doors closed.

two planes later and i landed in tuscon.  the beautiful mrs k had reserved a 2007 mustang convertible for my driving pleasure.  schvonzie talked me through the directions to his house from the airport, since my mapquest directions were still on my washing machine in st.louis.

tuscon is usually sunny and warm, but specially for me they ordered up wind, rain, and clouds, along with 59 degrees.  undaunted, schvonzie and i busted out for a 30 mile ride.  it only rained a tad bit, and i got to see the landscape.  what a great place.

as a bonus, schvonzie, me, and his wife met up with none other than pat collier for some killer mexican food.  we all caught up and hope to kick it a little more before i head back to st. louis.

we're going to do about 4 hours tomorrow with some serious climbing on tap.

i miss my family so bad!  i'm a homebody.  mrs k.  tyson.  hanna.  eli.  the dogs.  gosh, i hate vacations.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

leaving on a jet plane

i'm heading out to tuscon tomorrow. it is with much trepidation that i leave, though.

there is always so much to do. home, work, kids, etc. it's hard to get things done when i'm home. i don't think i can get things done when i'm not home...?

then i'll miss everyone, too. not that i don't like brian and his wife, quite the contrary. but the beautiful mrs k is going to be 2000 miles away. and the kids will be, too. who's going to wake me up 3 times a night? what about the dogs? what will they do without me? what will i do without them???

no wonder i don't like to go on vacations.....

i kid you not

having not shaved my legs since october, it was not a job for a schick. it was a job for electric clippers.

the majority of this pile of hair came from my legs. but, you know, you have the clippers going, there's excess hair, before you know it, there's a pile of hair the size of a large rodent on the floor.

you hairless people out there don't know how good you've got it.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Buy My Stuff

i've become a pack rat. help me stop the madness!

HERE

Saturday, January 19, 2008

grrrrrrr

what was that? i heard something. i think. i don't know.
i know i heard something! i may have to get up and tear someone a new one! grrrr. grrrr. don't make me get off this bed! don't make me!


zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz........

Friday, January 18, 2008

good thing i don't have an office job

i hate to shave. it's hard on my delicate face. and it takes time. and i don't have the patience for it. i could shave twice a day, as my 5 o'clock shadow is really more like a 1 o'clock shadow, 5 o'clock darkness.

but if i don't shave, it gets itchy. and scratchy. it's more grey than black now. i look really old when i don't shave. the kids recoil in horror from the brillo pad that is my face. and it looks bad. some guys look rugged when they don't shave, i just look unshaven.

electric razors don't work for me. all those great commercials about how electric razors can be as close as a blade are pure fiction. i've tried a lot of them, and using them is like shaving with a butter knife. i got one of those cool foil types this last time and i may as well just wish the hair away for all the good that thing has done.

just as well. shaving must be a way of teaching me patience.

i wanna rock!

looks pretty natural, doesn't it?? the next miley cyrus? who knows. at least she looks the part.

get 'em up horsey!


Tuesday, January 15, 2008

i love engines

the joe dirt in me really loves engines. all the moving parts, the promise of horsepower and noise, the sense of accomplishment when they're put together right....ah, redneckism!

this is a photo (that i lifted from autoblog) of the new corvette LS9 engine, the supercharged 6.2 liter 620+ horsepower beast that will power the new ZR1 corvette. it's a cutaway. i love cutaways. you get to see all of the cool bits that are hidden when the engine is fully assembled. this thing is compact, lightweight, powerful, and even gets good mileage, great mileage if you compare it to any engine that makes close to it's horsepower.

do i still ride mountain bikes?

that's a darn good question. i haven't ridden a mountain bike off road in more than a month. it's pathetic. what's the problem?

the weather hasn't cooperated. it's always wet when i have an opportunity. i don't have the opportunity because, well, life gets in the way. i could go on and on with the excuses. bottom line: i haven't made the time. all this worry about my road riding and training causes off-roading to take a back seat. how ironic, since riding on the road improves my off-roading!

at least i don't have to worry about what i would ride, if, you know, i was able to go off-roading.

there's the red homegrown. it's been upgraded from a street machine to off-road status again. i parted it up nicely with x-9, avid ti brakes, a spankin' new sid, and the kaiser's old crossmax wheels. it's coming in at 22.5 pounds. very solid machine. it saw duty from about september last year until november.

the primary race bike is up in the air. it shouldn't be, but it is. there is the ventana el fuego, which is built to be the star. xtr and sram xo. niiiiice. never even been ridden. but hanging up in the basement is the orbea oiz. it keeps calling me. i loved the ride of that bike, and it's not very dignified to let it hang. there is no way that i am going to put both together and ride them both...none of them get ridden as it is. so it looks like i have a decision on which to put together and which to discard like yesterdays laundry.

all of which will be a distant worry next week when i'm on my way to arizona to ride with schvonzie. i'm hoping he doesn't drop me on mt. lemon. hell, i'll just be happy to be riding on mt. lemon. maybe he'll have mercy on my old bones. or, maybe i should just bring my mountain bike and give him a good schoolin'....uh, nah, i guess not. i don't even ride mountain bikes anymore, right?

Monday, January 14, 2008

boring power meter stuff


i'm guessing that unless you're a information geek like me, things like power meter numbers bore you to death. plus, are anybody else's power number relevant at all to anyone else? probably not. but because i know so many people that train with power, i'm going to put up my first 7 months worth of data. just the peak numbers for given periods. ignore this post if it bores you. and yes, i'm well aware that most guys that weigh as much as me can probably put out much higher numbers...that's ok, i'll just use the excuse that i'm old and fat. these are normalized:

5 second power: 1291

30 second power: 733

1 minute power: 534

5 minute power: 365

10 minute power: 322

30 minute power: 285

60 minute power: 275

120 minute power: 265


the way my training has been structured, i never go for max numbers...the numbers always come out of a grouping of intervals. for example, i never go out, warm up, and try to post the hottest 1 minute power for the sake of my records. my one minute intervals always come out of minute on/minute off exercises, so the key element is consistency. or, they come from climbing out of the saddle, which naturally requires some pretty high efforts, but at the expense of the over the top speed. there is no "max effort" so i can brag about the numbers. could i post better numbers? probably, but then they would be useless in my training, because just posting a high number doesn't help me get faster.

.
another example is my 5 or 10 minute power numbers. those numbers have been achieved not in intervals, but in harder long workouts.

.
i think one of the dangers of getting a power meter is going out and stomping on the pedals and bragging to your friends. what good does that do? the real value of the power meter devices is to use the information to see how you improve, and you get to see where waste is, where you feel most comfortable, what heart rates correspond to what outputs, etc.
.

taken out of context, the numbers are meaningless. because i keep all the workouts on file, i can go back and see exactly when and how some of the numbers are made, and then similar workouts in the future can have some context, some real use.


Sunday, January 13, 2008

weekends-out of control

i've said several times that weekends here are just out of control. not completely unlike a frat party weekend, with booze, babes, and buffoonery. maybe a little. we have the noise. we have the mess. we have the spilled liquids (and perhaps body fluids). we have shouting. oh, we have the babes (hanna and the beautiful mrs k) and the buffoonery. i guess we're just lacking the booze.

we had a big mcdonald's morning saturday, along with the funland indoor playground. tyson managed to clear out the upper section when, uh, he forgot his manners in a very frat boy kind of way. another boy in the vicinity kept uttering loudly how much it "reeked". deanna got in a run, and i had one of my best rides in months. antibiotics? cold? they got nuthin' on me. later, after pork chops, green beans, and brown rice, we hit the movies. i have to say, water horse is one of the best family movies we've seen in a while. don't hate on it until you've seen it.

after yet another sleepless night courtesy of our small frat boy. just like frat boys, he never knows when to call it quits, never wants to go to bed, usually smells, is always eating, needs attention, and still manages to make everyone think he's so cute. we all got up to go to church anyway, with a detour to starbucks along the way. i rode the trainer for a spell. hanna and tyson made more home made videos. they also made some cookies, which i am trying really hard to avoid overindulging in. we hung some picture frames and some curtain rods. deanna tagged everything in the house with her new label maker, including the dogs. i think there is a label on the fridge that says "fridge." folded laundry. wrote in blog. zzzzzzzzzzz.

(i'd make a terrible frat boy.....)

Friday, January 11, 2008

Pantera du jour

love it or hate it, this high impact orange color has been used on a lot of cars the last couple of years. ford did a good job in promoting it's new edge with it, as did pontiac with the g6 gt's. this '73 pantera is obviously a show car, and i imagine that in real life it's paint is a mile thick of this gorgeous orange. i for one, am a fan of the color.
i don't know how the owner of this car would ever get the guts to drive it outside. i can't have anything nice, because i'm always afraid of hurting it. i'm the kind of guy who needs to have someone else put the first scratches on something really cool so i can then enjoy it. i'm pretty sure i could get at least a few runs through the gears on a nice day if there was a few nicks in the paint, though....

let's not have a repeat

there was more than one factor that precipitated my cry of "no mas!" just before the start of last year's racing season.

although my training seemed to be going good in january and february of '07, i got sick 3 times in rapid succession, punctuated by my infamous sinus infection/nonstop coughing. it happens to me every year, but last years was a doozy. i was so sore from coughing, i felt i broke a rib. add that to the "eli situation" and it was apparent that racing just wasn't in the cards. it's so hard to get moving when your legs get kicked out from underneath you.

so i was naturally pretty alarmed at the beginning of the week when i felt the sinus symptoms creeping in. i halted my workouts, started a dreadful regimen of home spun therapy, and finally gave in to antibiotics. problem hopefully solved.

i've never felt so close to being able to race in january before. could it be attitude? maybe. i was so not ready to finish racing in 2007, and maybe i'm still carrying a bit of that over. maybe i'm also not out of shape. riding doesn't hurt; it feels great, as tony the tiger is prone to say.

the more i think about it, the more i think that my break last year was a Godsend.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

when the phone rings

hey dad! dan's on the phone and he's asking if you're going to race with the THF guys this year. you gonna do it dad? huh, dad? c'mon, dad, it'll be fun! think of all the cool guys on the team and how you might be able to help them win some races! c'mon!
uh, dan? can dad call you back? my diaper has lost that fresh feeling. does he have your number?

help a friend, donate to a cause

chris is a friend of mine from way back. we worked, trained, raced, and even got drunk together at blueberry hill. he's doing something really cool and would really appreciate some help and it goes to a good cause, as well.

go HERE to check it out

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

finally

this kid fights sleep like underdog fights criminals. after laying him on our bed at 11pm, he crawled underneath my pillow and went to sleep. a strong den instinct, maybe? is he secretly related to rosco?

Monday, January 07, 2008

falling is a bummer, get well dianne

a friend of ours got hurt on her bike today. president of the ghisallo cycling club, dianne, fell on the monday morning ride. just a fluke accident, and she'll be in the hospital for a while. she broke her pelvis and a rib and a bone in her neck. such a shame. we were very happy that she was wearing a helmet (she always does!!!!) and the helmet is now broken, so it saved her from a serious head injury as well.

she will probably be inundated with get well wishers tomorrow at the hospital...everyone who meets her loves her.

anyone who wants more info can give us a call at the store tomorrow.

traffic?

has the shutdown of I-64 in st. louis been the armageddon that it was supposed to be? no, not really, i guess. it isn't much fun. traffic does suck at different times of the day in different directions.

what's weird is how traffic has circumvented the area. i rode to work this morning and didn't find clayton road too bad, like i thought. but geyer was HARSH. ???? why geyer? and watson heading toward crestwood was heavy. south city dwellers heading for 44/270, i guess?

driving home, we found lindbergh to be curiously light on traffic....easy to figure that one out. no traffic funneling in or out at hwy 40. it was weird to see that godforsaken bridge just GONE. good riddance. that thing belonged in the 5o's. the shortest, tightest entrance and exits in the whole dang city, i think.

i'll be glad to see the whole shebang finished. i'm hoping for the best...an expressway without the tortured hills and turns and tight shoulders. but, you know what? most modern road designers concede that drivers will flood a vacuum. so whatever, wherever that new, cool, wide road is, is where ALL the traffic goes. so, is the new I-64 project doomed already, before the first car drives on it's yet-to-be-finished tarmac? i don't know. highway 44 has always been a pretty smooth moving highway, built wide, with wide shoulders and smooth entrance and exit ramps. built to be a real highway first, rather than a two lane grown into a highway like 40/64.

i'll hope for the best. in the mean time, me and the missus will try to search out the best ways to get to and from the west....when we drive, that is.

record high temps!

saturday wasn't so great, but i took it for early january. it was 50 degrees and windy. i took the new bike out for a solid 55 miles. i was wasted after fighting the wind and my lack of endurance. i dragged around the rest of the day, and the beautiful mrs k and i stole out of the house to eat at chava's in soulard. we both sat at the table and stared at each other, her tired from eli's marathon days and nights, me tired from riding. we perked up when dinner came, and even shared a fantastic desert. we got coffee afterward so we could face the music when we got home, but eli went down without too much drama.

after church, the mrs and i went for a ride together. more wind, but it was a frighteningly warm afternoon at 73 degrees. 6 degrees above the previous record. after 2 hours together, she headed home and i went for another hour and for whatever reason felt great. i hit a cool loop a couple of times that included lindeman, doherty ferry, barrett station, big bend, ballas, west adams and lindeman again.

i made a trifecta out of it by riding to work this morning, something i hadn't done in a long while. it was great, but windy again. the roads were soaked with condensation, and the orca was trashed when i got to work. but i'm feeling fantastic. it's a wonder what a bit of riding can do for the soul, especially when fitness comes so quickly.

Friday, January 04, 2008

hold the mullet, please!

i have never been much of a camaro fan. the exception is the 1970 1/2 to 1973's. very clean, taught lines...then it was over. from that point on, it seemed that the only thing camaro's were good for was a good laugh. never mind that they were fast. they were mullet cars. if you're a camaro fan, my apologies...sorry 'bout that mullet.

but if the 2009 camaro actually comes to fruition, i will be shopping that just like i'll be shopping the dodge challenger. these ponycar remakes are just too good to pass up. i like (not love) the 2005+ mustangs, so my wandering eye has wandered on over to the chevy and dodge stores.

this thing promises to be a monster, just like the challenger.

time will tell.

summer frantic?

it seems like summer around here.

no, not because it's warm. obviously, it's still the dead of winter. but because i have so many things are going on.

there's work. we had a staff meeting tonight to do some serious patting on the back for the people that made it happen this year. there is the thf team merchandise that i have to take care of. it's not hard at all, just always another email or call or detail. there is the team bio stuff that i needed to do tonight...didn't. oops. there is the planning for my trip to tuscon and the worry that i will be so horribly out of shape that i will spend most of the trip going 14mph getting a tan. and what would make me faster for tuscon? me getting my ride times to my coach so he can make a schedule...didn't. oops. then of course there is the omnipresent pull of the children and a recurrence of a sleepless toddler.

i think i need to ride outside tomorrow. for a long time. very far. and maybe sunday, too. just me and the orca.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

catch a glimpse

i see an ear in this pile of clothes....
...and a little more to see here.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

big boy bed

hi everybody! i've grown too big for my britches and now it's time that i slept in a real big boy bed! mom and dad have it all figured out.
here it is. it's pretty low to the ground, and has a little side rail thing to keep me from rolling off in the middle of my normal fitful nights sleep. at first, mom had the bed on the side with my friends poo, tigger, and piglet.

tyson came to try the bed out, too. we played and wreaked havoc while mom was situating the room, then i bashed tyson in the head with a toy 'cause i got too excited. i told him i was sorry.


mom finally turned the bed onto the other wall. she said it worked better. whatever. it all looks like a barrel of monkeys to me.



dad even had to try the new bed out. i was getting pretty tired by this point, and just wanted to get all the photo ops taken care of. this big boy bed is HUGE! i could put all my trains in here and still have room.




prayer time! god is good, god is great, now we thank him for this food, amen! now get outta my bed, you've got your own big boy bed!