So I bailed out on the Point to Point. I just could not get past mile 35 without a serious bonk. I hate saying this but next year should be better. I am following a.training plan and I will continue to follow the program through the winter. I have been losing weight without dieting and should be able to continue as long as I follow the program.
I am writing this from my phone. So far the Droid X seems to work very well. My only complaint is that I.keep moving ape from page to page when I put it in my pocket. The phone works very well. The camera is not great but the video is excellent. Weird.
I have been riding a fair amount. I have 1400 miles in on the mtn bike this year. I have worn out a set of tires, a rear hub, a cassette and a pair or two of shorts. Have not had much to blog about. I think Facebook takes all of my blog mojo. I had a few minutes today and found a very cool video over at XXC.com
During the race this past weekend I managed to mash my cassette. I guess a fat guy stomping on the pedals for everything he is worth while shifting gears can cause harm to the cassette. Who knew. Between the cables which were gummed to the point of making my forearms ache while shifting gears and my mashing skills. I manged to bend several of the cogs. Karl made the phone call and gave me the bad news. Oh well it is just money right? . I did manage to go out for a short ride tonight and it was amazing how much better the bike shifts.
My ride was cut short by a flat tire. I have been using a new sealentCaffelatex. The stuff works great for sealing a new tire on your rim but I am not sold on it's ability to plug holes. It seems to spew out of holes of the size a goat head produces. Guess where I live? Goat head central. Anyhow I went through a tire full of Caffelatex and it never plugged. I put in some good old Stans and it plugged up immediately. Given that Stans is less expensive I am not going to use Caffelatex any more.
How did my race go you ask? It went OK. When it was over I thought for sure I had finished DFL. Mike let me know that I actually was not DFL but had finished in 7th place of 8. It turned out that there was one racer who had not finished at that time and really I was 7th of 9. Anyhow I was 15 minutes slower than the group that I would like to race with so I have some work ahead of me. Honestly finding out I was not DFL was a win for me. It made me feel much better. I have no delusions of winning but I would really like to just hang with them from time to time. I am not there right now. That is the goal . Get to where I can hang.
I had a crummy Mesa Verde effort. After screwing up some moderately technical rocky sections I managed to go over the bars twice on the preride. Bruised my left knee and scraped up my shoulder and elbows. The next day riding my first and only lap of some very cool single track I was done. I could just not recover. I probably could have done another lap but not until 3 pm and at that point I just did not feel like going out again.
Because things did not go well and I want to prove to my self that I can do some long hours on a bike. I think I am going to do the 12 hours of Corner Canyon. I have not figured out when but the idea that Jim presented was a 12 am to 12 pm ride. Corner Canyon would be perfect for this type of ride. In a couple of weeks it will be very warm and riding from midnight to noon will keep the temperatures down plus the trail is not technical and it is a very fun place to ride at night. Another benefit of taking off at midnight is that there will be no one on the trail for the first 6 hours. I figure since I live very close and there is bike path from almost my front door to single track leading up Corner Canyon pitting from my house would be easy. My current thinking is that I will ride from the Equestrian center up Clarks, down Jamie's trail, up Canyon Hollow and then down Ghost falls and back to my house. This would be one lap. I have no idea how many laps I can do and would guess that a lap is around 13 miles. Clarks always hurts and doing laps up that thing is going to really hurt. This is probably just crazy but the idea of riding with head lamps and doing laps up there is intriguing.
Let me know if any of you are interested in doing it as well. I have a feeling there may be a couple of people out there that are insane enough to think this would be fun.
So I have neglected the blog for quite a while. Between taking a spill and getting sick I did not get in much riding after the St George race. In the last three weeks I have been back on the bike but not quite as much as I would like. Kids, job and weather keep getting in the way. Last night I finally got out and rode Corner Canyon. Riding up Brock's there was only one small spot of mud. Unfortunately after the rain today I am sure it will take a few days to dry out. The lower stuff will be dry immediately but the upper stuff will be a mess. Someone has been up there trimming the trails. Most of the branches that were crowding the trails have been trimmed down and the trails are in very nice shape. On the way up Brock's at one point there was a view of Ghost falls. The falls are usually obscured by the vegetation. Brock's has some cool views of the other trails and the valley.
Hope things dry out shortly. Had a good time and want to start riding Corner Canyon as often as possible until the weather gets too hot.
Well the St George race is over. I set a new personal best for slow. I promise to do better next race. Meaning I will be faster not slower.
Someone just sent me this video. I am not much of a hand gun fan. I would not want one in my house. I have and will again hunt ducks and pheasants so I am not anti gun. I just do not like hand guns. I am sure someone will post hate replies. Oh well. Anyhow this dude is funny as hell and scares the crap out of me.
Sat and watched Stop making sense concert video the other night. With surround and some killer bass. It was awesome. I completely geeked out. If you get a chance rent it. Watch David Byrne. The dude is very talented and does some incredible aerobics.
The next video I want to find is Oingo Boing's Farewell tour. The video goes for about $150. I just hope they re-release it and I can pick up a copy for $20.
Plus it has some cool stuff from their early days. Man were they weird.
I finally told Susan about the new ride. Unfortunately I ridden the new 6 only 3 times. And guess how far I have gone? Exactly no where. I do have a pretty sweet set up though. I can play Guitar Hero and pedal my bike at the same time.
I was hitting refresh every couple of seconds starting at 5 minutes to 9. I was the 19th person to get in today. I cannot figure out how 18 other people got in before me. I am on a fast Internet connection and I was clicking like a mad man. Glad that is over. Glad to have the opportunity to suffer, bonk and probably puke up the tailgate party from Thursday night. I am sure there will be some lingering ill effects of a Thursday night season opening game. I do not think the trailer will make it to that game. Tim and Tiff are always much better at tailgating than me anyway. I just show up bring some food and help clean up. They really deserve all the credit.
One other thought. I guess now I have to get serious about riding my bike. The first ICUP race is in a few weeks and I am as fat as I was at this time last year. I need to get my shit together. I will be on the trainer tonight for 90 minutes. I will tell Bob that I did 9 minutes when he says he lifted the Wasatch mountains on Facebook today.
Spent a few hours bottling my Stout today. I have a thing for Grolsh bottles. The cap is nice. It saves you the ugly problem of having the bottle caps fly off your beer if something goes wrong. That and they are just cool. By the way I have never had that happen to me. It usually only happens when the beer is exposed to extreme heat. So I did what any brewer should do and poured a little off the top and tasted my project. It has a nice roasted flavor similar to coffee. It was definitely unfinished and flatter than flat. I could not taste the creamy flavor you are supposed to get from the oatmeal but I am not concerned. It needs some time to age and carbonate. It will mellow in the next couple of weeks and will be Ok to sample in 2 weeks but will not be really good for about a month.
So today I did something I have not done in probably 8 years or maybe more. I made beer. Making beer is basically just like making soup. If you can follow a recipe and make soup you can make beer. This will be a nice chocolate oatmeal stout in about 4 weeks. The first photo is my Batch Sparge. I am trying to get the sugars out of some oatmeal and other grains. This next shot is of the flavoring grains. 1 lb chocolate malt, 1lb black patent malt, 1lb roasted barley and 1lb of crystal malt. They are in the steeping bag. This is just like making tea. You have to be very careful or you can end up with tannins which are very bitter and do not taste very good at all.
This is just before I added the Flavoring grains and had just added the Malt extract. Basically it is sugar. It adds flavor plus gives the yeast something to feed upon.
And now a shot with the water from the flavoring grains. This is the point where it needs to be boiled for an hour. I added Amarillo hops for flavor. The last 15 minutes you add hops for aroma and Irish moss to clear the beer.
Once you have it all cooked you move it into this nifty 5 gallon bucket and try to cool it down as fast as possible. It always takes me forever to get it to cool down. Even in a sink full of water and ice it is still too hot to add the yeast. Hopefully in the next hour it will be cool enough to add the yeast.
Once the yeast is added it will ferment for about 2 weeks in the basement. It needs a place with no direct light and roughly a 70 degree temperature. At the end of 2 weeks I will have to clean all my old bottles or I could keg the beer. I am leaning toward bottling because it is much easier to transport bottled beer than it is to transport a keg. This is a beer to be shared. Showing up with a keg seems kind of weird to me.
With time to age it should be good to go in about 4 weeks if I bottle or 2.5 weeks if I keg. At this point I am in no hurry and wanted a nice heavy beer for after the 12 hours of Mesa Verde. I have made this beer in the past and it turned out really nice. The only problem was that it is a meal in a bottle. Lots of rich flavor but very filling. Remember the old Miller Lite ad's ? Well with this beer the argument goes something like.. Tastes great. Very filling. Tastes great. Very filling.
Went for a 2 hour spin today. I have not ridden outside since November 9th. It has been too long. I have winter gear and I really should get out there and ride. As I sit here I hate to admit it but I am a bit sore. My legs hurt. I guess eating like a pig and swilling beer for the last couple of months has come around and kicked me right in the ass.
I have been burning vacation days for the past week. I hate to leave any on the table but I had to ditch one day. Bummer. While I was out I did get some house work done. Patched the hole in the room where the pipe broke and painted the room again. I think I have painted that room 4 times now. I am getting a bit sick of that room. Susan moved my trainer out of the basement bedroom and now I am in the official exercise room. It is complete with rollers, magnetic trainer and a treadmill. I am not very coordinated anymore. At one time I could ride for an hour on a set of rollers and barely even move right or left. Now I get on them and proceed to crash. And crash often. I think I need to ride rollers in a doorway and maybe with a set of training wheels. Susan thinks it is hysterical to hear me wad it up on the rollers and thinks that they are stupid. I am starting to agree.
While I was out I went to see Avitar. I really wanted not to like the movie. There is something about spending half a billion dollars to make a movie that bothers me. Well the movie was quite good and I will probably shell out the $12 to see it in 3D once the theatres are a bit less crowded. If you have not seen the movie I would recommend it and I will probably see it again. Now for a movie that I rented. District 9. What a steaming pile of dogiedoodoo. I understand there were people who liked the movie but I am guessing they are the same people who enjoy having their toe nails smashed with a ball peen hammer. I made it about 30 minutes in before I bailed out.
Here is to hoping that the new decade is a good one.