Tuesday, February 26, 2008

With a name like Snelling . . .

(I'd like to note that this photo has nothing to do with Snelling, I just felt that this post was boring and needed a bit of illustration.)

As I sit here on my second day of calling in sick to life, I'm trying very hard to remember what prompted me to drive 4 hours (6 1/2 on the way home!) through the snow, to race in the wind and the rain, when I already had a cold. I guess I'm just a sucker for a bike race. Snelling is the first race I've DNFed in since my 3rd XC race ever. I had decided to race Expert, even though I was still probably better suited to Sport. Yeah, I wasn't about to go do a second lap that day. And on Saturday I wasn't about to go do a 4th, in the wind, by myself, coughing up a lung. Oh well, mistakes were made. Now I have three weeks to get well and trained before the next race. Sweeet. It sucks, too, because the weather just got nice, and here I am cooped up inside. I hate inside. Outside is so much better. Unless it's snowing.
I've tried for a long time now to get excited about "winter sports in the winter" but it just hasn't worked out for me. I mean, snow is cool and all, but I'd so much rather ride my bike in the sun. And . . . that's about all I have to say. Pretty lame, but that's it.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Where's-the-Cantua Creek and Deciduous Pine Not-So-Flat

Not that I'm complaining, I mean, I had a great weekend. Lots of good racing! I didn't win or anything, but the wonderful experience of having teammates to work with in a road race made it oh-so-much-fun.
On Saturday, for Cantua Creek, there were 4 Bellas in the cat 3s, plus Ryan (a 2) who had to ride with us or herself because the team High Road girls raced with the cat 3 boys. I didn't really know anyone going into the race, but everyone was so nice and open, and eager to work together to control the race. Myself, and teammates Laura and Soni kept attacking the group and made those other girls work hard to catch us so they'd be tired at the end and teammate Sue could take it. I felt pretty strong, and happy with my fitness for this time of year. Plus, I was wearing shorts and fingerless gloves, which always makes me happy in February.
On Sunday it was down to me and Soni in the cat 3s. In our brief discussion of strategies we both concluded that our best bet was to not get dropped. :) Things went pretty well for the first 50 miles or so. A number of the girls who had been absent on Saturday were just hanging on the back and not doing any work. Lame. Oh yes! And it was the first race I'd been in where the whole pack agreed to stop and pee together! I'd heard about such things, but never experienced it myself. I though that was pretty cool until less than 30 miles down the road, a bunch of them started whining that they had to pee again. That just seemed silly. Fortunately the consensus was to press on (it is a race, isn't it?) so they just had to hold it. Anywho, things were going great until the road started going up. A couple of girls attacked as we started rolling towards the final climb. I worked hard to catch up with them, and we managed to shed a few. Unfortunately, I was one of the few shed as the road again turned up quite steeply. I limped up the hill and over the remaining rollers to finish, oh, somewhere near the back. I blame a lack of food (I always forget how to eat during a race over the winter) and a lack of legs, lungs, etc. :) But it was hella fun, no less. Oh yes, and many many thanks and smiles to Denise for the great feed before the awful hill! I would have been a thirsty girl if she hadn't been there!
After the race I took my puppy swimming in Pine Flat Lake. He'd never been swimming before, so I was so proud when he jumped right in after a stick and did his first doggy paddle! Unfortunately, I was an abismal photographer this weekend, so I have no illustrations to enliven my report.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Two weeks of snow.

The weather report says it will be sunny and warm(er) for the next week. Good thing, too. We've had snow almost every day for about 2 weeks. Not a ton of snow, but enough that it puts a cramp in my bike riding. I logged a whole lot of trainer miles last week. Got in a nice long ride on Saturday in the windy windy wind, but at least I was outside. Bailed on going to Chico to ride the Paskenta Century because there were chain controls over the pass. Weak. But putting chains on and sitting in awful traffic sucks. So instead we went XC skiing up at Boca Reservoir with the dog. Suuuper deep snow. Like, thigh deep. I got stuck a lot. And the dog got big snow balls all over his legs and could hardly walk. But it was lovely up there, and, again, really nice to be outside.