Monday, January 26, 2009

Wicked Winter Warrior

Today we find another recap of the horrifying montany of riding the trainer during these long northeastern winters.... 

I having decided to become either a top "B" rider or a "A-" rider this spring have taken on the daunting task of riding my bike, up to and possibly in excess of 14 hours per week on a Trainer in the middle of January.  As the days pass by I've grown accustomed to the routine of dawning my summer cycling gear, hopping on the trainer and spinning for hours on end staring at my computer or television screen while I attempt to make the hours pass by. 

Now, it's not all bad. I've really enjoyed some of the stuff I've been watching. Most notably episodes of Top Gear and the Ric Burns documentary New York. To date I've watched an astounding 10 hours of the latter and learned a lot about the growth and development of the metropolis since the dutch first settled it in the 1600s. 

Additionally, thanks to my training advisor I've been way more structured and consistent when compared to last year. I think by this time last year I had totalled something like 12 hours, where this year I've tripeled that by riding near 36 hours. So, who knows, while I considered last year a resounding success compared to the year before perhaps it'll work out in my favor. 

Another item of note on training is that I've been able to ride outside a total of 2, count 'em 2 times so far this year. The highlight of which was doing the River Loop last Friday when Schenectady topped out at an extremely balmy 41, which is practically tropical as we've been averaging below 20 for most of the month. 

Sunday, January 11, 2009

School Starts, Training Begins...

While I know it's been quite some time since my last post, there's plenty to talk about so I'll start old and then bring y'all up to date. 

After my last post (NBX Cross) I did one final race before I called it a season, the Ice Weasels Cometh, promoted by Colin of the infamous What can I say about this race? It was AWESOME! I think that it was about 15 degrees Fahrenheit and a beautiful sunny day. The course was really wild as I had 22 switchbacks which made for plenty of people ride along the course to cheer you on. I went down with Jeremy (Tufts Alum/QuadCycles) and another QuadCycles guy and had a nice long warm up on a trainer. After getting in a couple of practice laps we went to the line for the chilly start. 

When the word go went I pulled out the most amazing start! I won the hole shot and was leading the race for the first 1/4 of the lap. Out in front all by myself for awhile until I got passed, and passed, and passed, until about halfway into the switchbacks where I ended up somewhere in the middle of the pack. I then basically went backwards and the only solace I was taking is that I was riding the run-up. But, eventually I started to cramp up and I actually DNF'ed the race.  Whatever. I had tons of fun. 

After that race the Next day (December 14th) was my Birthday and I quite uneventfully turned 22. I had a nice dinner with my folks and my grandma at an Italian Restaurant in Waltham, MA. Not much to tell, but it's always nice to be with family. 

Then on that Monday I took a 3 day trip to New York City to visit with my Big sis and to check out some museums I'd never been to. I ended up going to the Met, MoMA and the Jewish Museum. 

Then I went home for a week. Travelled to DC with my folks to hang out with big sis for a few days from the 25th to the 29th and saw the Newseum, the National Potrait Gallery and saw two excellent films, Frost/Nixon and Milk. After DC, I headed on up to Philly where I got a glance at Drexel for grad school and had dinner with the Twits, Joe and Caitlin. Then a Day in transit back to Lincoln before a few days with Friends, a relaxed new years eve and then finally the drive back to snow-covered Schenectady. Somewhere in there I also got in a car accident and got a sweet powder day of snowboarding at Cannon Mountain.  

Gosh that's a lot!

When I finally made back to Schenectady I set up the trainer, got my laundry and got back to life as a student for the first time in 7 weeks off. What a drag, especially when I've got a challenging course load of: Design of Thermal - Fluid Systems, Solar Technology (Grad Level) and the second term of my senior project. I've also managed to get in a bunch of hours on the trainer, while watching the following:

-10 Episodes of Entourage
-5 Episodes of Arrested Development
-Ric Burn's New York (Disc 1) 
-Lucky Number Slevin
-2 Episodes of Top Gear 

Here's my home where I'll be spending a lot of time: 

And Finally, as you've noticed by reading, I've moved the blog! The old site was not really working in a manner we liked, so it's been moved here. Keep your eyes peeled for the other ECCC Blogs soon!