Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Holiday Consumption Corruption.

Holidays are a pain. Both parents live around the corner from each other and one set of my wife's G-rents live less than 20 mins from there. To add to the demand of personal presence i have multiple friends engaging in long trips to the Asian continent just after the 25th; one left Sunday, another yesterday, and the last one today. 2 are going to Iraq and one to India. At this point in time both places have proven fatal. Anyway, on top of the demand of visiting friends and family, there is the added demand of consuming alcohol to make these visits more entertaining or maybe just to get us all through. Regardless though last night was one of the the former, and karma is reminding me that alcohol is fun's credit card, you pay for it later. I'm not a big drinker (not to say i wouldn't like to be if it weren't for all those health risks). And with cycling season quickly approaching (tomorrow is January), the alcohol intake will have to subside. I blame it on the holidays.

On top of increased alcohol %'s in drinks was a decrease in exercise time, and more importantly riding time. I got on the bike once last week and it was for a short jolly ride the neighborhood for 45mins. I couldn't find the means necessary to wear a helmet therefor causing my caution and concern. I did however get out and run 4 times, totaling somewhere around 20 miles. One day was only like 2 miles and that's being generous. Like i said before, the reason for the running, is traveling.

Last night i didn't feel like riding on the rollers when i got home and so i just left the house in the dark. Did some laps around a large loop in our neighborhood with a few intervals just to see how my legs were feeling....they weren't feeling good. A week off the bike (basically) and my legs were terrible. I was happy just to be riding though. I also rode in this morning after two nights of 5 hours or less sleep and a hangover. I thought i was going to vomit a few times. I was also brushed (literally) by an SUV. I tried to chase them down, but they caught the light we were approaching. Idiots.

Thank goodness the Holidays are over after tonight. I might go ride downtown DC tomorrow just for fun. Depends on the wifey-poo and what her plans are.

The bike I'm getting in a couple weeks...

Monday, December 22, 2008

Lace 'em up

I just had a good week on the bike last week (190miles). Thats good for me right now, specially considering we had weather advisories all last week. I put in another 50+ miles on Saturday. I was aiming for 60 but i got out of the house a little late, 30 mins to be exact. I finished the 50 miles just under 2:40. So i was happy. It was a fun ride. Details in a minute...

Well with Christmas being this week, that means it will be hard to convince my wife to let me go roll around for a few hours on certain days...also with a little holiday trip on the weekend, just long enough that i need to be able to get out and work out, and just short enough that i can't justify bringing the bike. And i imagine there will be a couple days like today where i have to run errands on my lunch break, which means no commuting via bicycle and my rollers are at my parents. So what shall i do....i guess i will do something i vowed never to do again. Run.
I found my running shoes yesterday (and they are @sics, because the only real running shoes are @sics). I'm going to go out for a run tonight. I just hope i don't injure myself. I'm actually looking forward to it, because of all the riding, which is usually just commuting. It gets mentally tiring and a change is good. So if all goes well i shall bring my shoes with me on holiday.

Epic Saturday Ride
Saturday morning i woke up at 6 because i was going to ride to my buddy's(Pete) place about 22 miles away and then go for an hour with him and then meet up Ben at 830 and head to work (A-1 Shop). Well like usual, things don't go as planned. I left at 645 and got there at 8, we left and rode for about 15mins and turned around and headed back towards Ben's. We passed a hand full of other cyclists which is weird because this time of the year a hand full is about how many i see a month. Anyway, on our way back one of the cyclists turned around and chased us down. It was a little odd because i knew who he was, that doesn't happen often. You can find his blog here. We started to chat and he said he would join us for a little while. So we were up to 3 riders and about to pick up Ben. I love riding in groups. So much fun. So we turned onto Ben's street and we were cruising along just fine when a squirrel bolts out in front of us from the left, which isn't the first time i've had a run in with a dumb rodent like that. Well i think this one was an ultra idiot because instead of me just running him over which i was poised to do, he paused for a half a milisecond and then lunged forward right into my spokes, subsequently whipping him counter clockwise into my front fork...and then somehow ricocheting out and into my crank...i looked back and saw his leg twitching in the air. Its not the sight i was wanted...

Like i said we arrived at the shop just under 2:40. Along the way Ben tried multiple track stands, one of the many screw off things we do on our rides, which are composed of tons of fun. Pete and District Cycling peeled off much earlier and returned home.

So yes i killed a squirrel. i felt bad.

For my wife's christmas present she is getting two kittens.
James i know you're not a fan of cats, but my wife is, so...yeah.

i'm excited to go running tonight!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Bosses Desk...

A little much right?

He's from Minnesota if you didn't gather that.
Also, i'm really not a master of mspaint, but i did figure out how to make text 3-D which is cool. The result is in the previous post...the before is-
I definitely like mine better.

adios for the weekend! Go Philly!


I took a new route this morning and i was super excited because for the past few weeks I've completely sucked at cycling and i found that my cleats were maladjusted so i basically pedaling from the middle of my foot. My cycling skills not only suck in the dept of speed and endurance but also maintenance and style (including riding position).

Regardless though, i was hopeful that this could cure my inability to hold a decent pace. So i proceeded forward this morning excited only to continue my slothfulness. I kept pushing forward harder and i took a new road (Catharpin) because it adds a few extra miles onto my route and its less travel by cars. I was feeling strong on all the little hills i climbed but overall i just couldn't hack it. Finally i made another attempt to bolt up a small short climb and right at the top i died. I went gasping for air and i slowed to a running pace. I gained a slight increase in speed but i bonked. I am very familiar with the feeling. At first i thought maybe it was that little climb? But no, every time i thought i could gather momentum, my body reminded me of its lack of energy.

My diet lately has been one of frugality (wow that's actually a word...weird). My diet includes things like chicken salads, black beans and rice with chicken, a light burrito (not eating the whole thing), turkey subs, turkey sandwiches, whole grain cereal, occasionally a few fig newtons or triscuts, and lots of water. I'm still losing weight and I'm thinking my riding performance is a result of my change in diet a little while back. Maybe i should cool it on shedding pounds. I've lost 35lbs since i started this blog. that's a lot. I'm below 180 in the nude, about 180 or 183 fully clothed.
(I'm becoming masterful with mspaint)

Today is my office's Secret Santa day. I got my immediate boss which he's easy. I think he literally has 30 black bears on his desk (I'll take a picture to prove it)...its kind of unbelievable unless you see it. It might even be 34 but i can't remember if that's counting the pictures around too.
Anyway, everyone in the office is playing Christmas music, its awesome. I'm not though. Still switching between Fiona Apple and Bon Iver (which coincidentally means Good Winter so its kind of Christmas music?). Bon Iver will always remind me of a wild Monday...pretty awesome day and Dan and Darryl have proof on their phone and they weren't even there. go figure.

My title pictures will change but the style will stay the same. I took some silly pictures of Zack in Micheal's last week. they make me smile. i hope they do the same for you.

Thursday, December 18, 2008


The changes are pretty obvious...Handlebars and brakes. I also replaced the tires with Specialized Armadillo's, i added Light and Motion Headlight and a crazy blinky tail-light.
I need to work on it a little bit. I work at the bike shop Saturday, so I'll have a bit of time then.

I found a new love...
As some of you know, I'm an unofficial Netflix promoter, a Redbox whore, and from time to time in moments of desperation i visit blockbuster and keep the movie until they threaten my credit card with an overpriced amount in exchange. Well thanks to Darryl I've discovered borrowing movies from the local library which has a decent selection. Last night they didn't have any good movies in, BUT they had some decent CD's of which was Fiona Apple's Extraordinary Machine:
With the Library being void of a good selection at that time i proceeded over to the nearest redbox and picked up Traitor, staring Don Cheadle and Guy Pierce among others. Rottentomatoes appears to be always correct in their "Consensus" which stated:
Despite another reliable performance from Don Cheadle, Traitor suffers from too many cliches and an unfocused narrative.
I would say that's nearly 100% true of Traitor.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Sick day...

today I'm taking a break from making bombs at Lockheed. I'm playing hooky. Except i still got up pretty early, so that i could meet Ben on his ride into work.

It was pretty brutal out. I got out on the bypass and there was a nice big head wind, which means until i see Ben and get to turn around its all into the wind for me. We passed each other around 14.5 miles out, so i did a U-E (how do you type that out?). The difference in effort-to-result was astounding...went from like 15-17 mph to 27-29. ugh. Unfortunately i can't pedal that fast because of my lacking more than one gear ratio and its a small one at that. Anyhow, Ben and i screwed around taking turns leaving each other in the dust, though with his bigger gear and the nice tail wind we had, he had a much bigger advantage. It was definitely fun though.

We got to the bike shop and since i had WAY overdressed, i pulled everything off and grabbed a water bottle and left. I was freezing for a bit but it was much better than before when i was sweating like a pig. Its currently super nice outside despite the wind. So i was out in shorts and a arm warmers, no knee warmers, no shoe covers, etc. So nice, except for the wind. I went back into the wind after a couple miles and that remained until the last 2 miles which had its share of nasty gusts for crosswinds.

It ended with 50 miles at around 2:45 maybe 2:40. My time on the comp didn't reset, only miles did. But i know about how long i rode yesterday.

I need to do that once or so a week. That was only my second time riding that far (first time on single speed). I feel happy.

Leaving here shortly (one to pick up my winter gear that i left at the shop) and two, to go to my buddies place so we can start our journey to Philly to see Bon Iver!
To hear his music, you can visit here-

You should have come Darryl...I'll buy you a t-shirt.

Friday, December 12, 2008

FAIL-winter woes

Last night was pretty brutal. I almost got naked right inside my front door just to get out of my wet clothes.
There is a section of my commute where i pass a ton of cars every night due to traffic. When i approached that section last night i found it difficult to be able to see since the water on the goggles mixed with their brake lights caused an odd red glare rendering me basically blind.
If they wrote a book about it that would be the cover. But like the goggles I'm sure it would fail as well. Just like the movie about the actual Novel did.

With that said, the Bears won last night. I almost put money on it but i didn't which i think I'm happy about it because there was a 3 point spread and i was considering betting on the spread until i saw NO's past losses and point differences in those losses. But games I'm putting money on...Titans to beat their 3.5 point spread. SEA to beat their 2.5 point spread. AZ to beat their 3 point spread. Should be good "investments".

I'm ready for the sun to stay around a bit longer. I'm sick and tired of riding in the dark.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Fall's weather shuffle

Again, fall has changed its mind and the weather overnight (literally). I went to bed with it being somewhere around 60 degrees last night. I was immensely excited about getting up and onto the bike, but like Christmas morning in the south i walked outside to find the weather not how i hoped it would be, which was also like Christmas morning in the south...high 30's and pouring rain.
Luckily last night i dropped by the bike shop to chat it up with the guys and see if we sold any bikes. Anyway, while i was there i bought a pair of leg warmers. These are just ANY leg warmers, they are special(ized), they have thermal fabric on the front side to help with warmth as leg warmers should. Well due to the rain i soaked all the way through and while undressing for a quick shower i noticed that my legs had a cool red/white wave design down them from the leg warmers thermal portion. The white being where the thermalness was and red being where it was not. It was like Moses was walking from my knee cap down to my ankle via my shin.

The shuffle thing has started to get old. i find myself skipping a lot of stuff. Mostly because i find that Blood Brothers followed by Johnny Cash or Bob Dylan just doesn't work. I need something between the two. Also, i believe this just leaves me craving Radiohead.

Its about time to go get wet again. The temp since i checked it this morning at 10 has only risen two degrees...41 F.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Confused as a turkey on a warm almost winter day.

Just to clarify-I'm not using those exact pair of safety goggles. I'm using the pair i have for when i am sawing wood to keep splinters out of my eye balls like the good carpenter Jesus said...that part about wood in the eyes?

Today i awoke to freak weather. In the midst of all my complaining we've received 50+ degree weather. I walked outside and immediately started sweating in my sweater, go figure. Well being that winter isn't for another 11 days I'm not surprised because i learned from none other than Lewis Black that fall doesn't know what to do with itself. Fall is the season of identity crisis.
Also recently it seems the days i choose not to ride are the best to ride. like today. i actually could have worn shorts. I doubt i would have though. My wife has stated that during the winter time she'd like me not to shave my legs during winter. which to me ends somewhere in Feb. So i stopped shaving about a week ago. My wife caught on to the vanity behind shaving and is also tired of my legs feeling like porcupines. I also stopped shaving my face, which wouldn't be news had people known that i actually started (back in July?). Anyway, after leaving the other day and it was below 20 i figured i could use a beard for a couple months. I look forward to shaving both my legs and face again mostly out of vanity.

I work 40 hours a week at a desk and i have the same 20 albums on our database basically since i started working here 3 1/2 years ago and I've become relatively sick of all the same music. I found an awesome button on my media player...SHUFFLE! So one second I'm listening to Blood Brothers or Fugazi and the next second I'm listening to Sigur Ros or Bob Dylan. Its odd but cool. The next best thing would be to have a nice voice in between each song saying the weather and traffic or something about world news. But that would take away from my Internet surfing.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

New Equipment

I have finally grown tired of literally crying every ride back and forth to work. And since i'm low on cash i'm using these...
They work great.

Leaving the office now...

Monday, December 8, 2008

Waiting on the Sun...

My day at work is usually broken up by a few small things like
I also occasionally visit CNN but nothing cool is happening there...

This morning was freezing. My seat somehow last week moved back and tilted a bit down. I had achieved a riding position i liked only to lose where is was in a week. I also need to fix my computer.

We finally got snow here in Nova. Wasn't much but nice enough. I unfortunately was not on my bike but in the movie theater seeing the new Bond movie. If i can't be on the bike, the next best place is in the theater. I LOVE movies.

I've been feeling like crap on the bike for about a month now, but Ben chalks it up to it being cold outside. My performance has dropped, not terribly but enough to notice. I've never ridden in such freezing temps so this is a new experience. On top of the cold, is the dark. I dread getting on my bike to go home at night. Just about every night i get a brush from a car or two. Agitating and honestly-a tad bit scary.

I'll be happy once it warms up and the sun hangs around longer.

I have new equipment to buy now. This morning it was below 20. Way too cold. I still rode but i have to get some nicer gloves.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

German Computers and Killer Frost.

As i left my house yesterday i did the usual things like packing my back pack, strategically pack my cell phone, wallet and keys in certain pockets, suit up, reset my computer, lock the door, clip in and roll out. I was running late that morning so i did those things in a very speedy manner and also because i was running late, i took the very short route to work (7.5 miles). Well the past couple rides I've been feeling much stronger and in turn, faster, and that particular morning i think i had a tailwind to boot. With all this in mind, i was moving along quite well after already putting a mile or so behind me, specially since i immediately head straight up hill leaving my neighborhood for this route. I glance down to see just how "well" i was moving along, the only thing was my computer was flashing an unusual German word. Confused and annoyed i tried pushing all 3 buttons in different sequences and patterns only to find more German words and being that i slept my way through High School German (and pulled large scale pranks...)i couldn't hardly understand any of the simple words that represent things such as -clock, hour, etc.
(That is not my bike...also if you look closely you can see a cut and paste of grass to cover up the stupid brake)

I still need to fix my bike computer...

Today i had a doctor's appointment to check out my "pre-cancer" and see what steps i need to take to insure i don't develop a actual case of cancer. But alas, i woke up at 7:25 after turning off my commuter alarm at 6:30 thinking my other alarm would wake me (which it did not). Well waking up at 7:25 wouldn't be so bad if my appointment wasn't at 7:30. So i basically got up and just got into the car. To add to my being late there was a nice inch of "frost" on my windshield that i had to scrape off, so i got off as much needed to be safe and roared down the road, only to crest that hill and face the sun and a now glazed over windshield rendering me blind. Unused to being blind in a vehicle i panicked and eventually came to a stop and cleared my windshield in the spot that somehow developed ice on it after removing it.

After almost wrecking because of frost, i arrived at the hospital only about 15 mins late...not too bad. Then i showed up signed in and the lady said she had no idea who i was...great. She phoned two other skin doc's and one said "yeah he's supposed to be here", which "here" is across town. So not only was i late but i was at the wrong freaking building. ugh.

All of that preventing me from riding my bike today. i almost drove home on my lunch break just to ride it back and forth. but i didn't. I'm not that hardcore.

Also, congrads to Darryl for winning the football pool.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Bon Iver Dec 15th


quick updates-
  • My basement is still f-ed up unless of course you happen to be the swamp thing in which case i doubt the mold will have any negative effect on you.
  • A trip has just hit the planning committee for Jan 2010.This trip will include things like-
    • Adirondacks in the dead of winter
    • Dan, myself, Ben, maybe Darryl?
    • XC Ski's
    • Jack Daniels or Johnny Walker (black label cause we're cheap)
    • And probably a snowman or too as a result of the previously mentioned items or just because i act like i'm 12
  • I've invented a new game to play since i started taking vitamins a few weeks ago-How many cups of water do i have to consume to get my piss clear? The answer is still unknown.
  • I am attending the Bon Iver show in Philly on Dec 15th
I was successful last week in convincing Ben to come see our new little loop for riding, which turned into who can drop who and i started it. I also have a smaller gear ratio and therefor I am quicker off the jump, but on one side of the loop there was a huge tailwind that once we got around, Ben would come booking by me and my legs were whipping around uncontrollably and i was going a mere 31 mph while he stilled pulled away. I would catch him on the slight rise into the head wind, lose him for about 1/8-1/4 mile and then back to the tailwind...ugh. Good fun.

I'm attempting to bring my bike on its first family vacation. We'll be in NJ for about 4 days right after Christmas and there's no way i'm taking a whole 4 days off the bike at this point (unless of course i happen to be on the AT with a couple buddies). So far i told my wife i'm bringing the bike and she said she didn't think there'd be time, which i countered easily. No response after that. SUCCESS! its not over till i'm on my bike in NJ though.

At this point with December already here and i'm not scheduled at the bike for a while and i'm in the negative for my racing bike, i have to be rethinking exactly what bike i'm going to purchase. With that said i'm a tad happy, because if i had the cash i probably would buy the TCR Advanced 1
But alas, i dont have the cash to buy that super sweet bicycle. And the reason for my slight delight is because i don't think i really deserve that bike yet. Its been a very long time since i raced a road bike and its been NEVER since i raced one in a real sanctioned race. So presenting my new goal a more appropriate bike for my CAT 5 adventures this spring/summer...the TCA Alliance 1
Come time to make the purchase i might for TCR Alliance 0 but we'll see come Feb. after i've sold everything i own except my wife.

I was really hoping to have at least sram rival on my bike but beggars can't be choosers as they say...

In other cycling news...
Stephan Shumacher has been indited with more reasons why his wins shouldnt count in the 08 Tour. Recent findings show that he was racing under false pretenses (and i'm not talking about doping), i'm talking about him being a complete woman. no offense to women of course...

Also, a 15 year old nearly ran away with the MARBAcross series final. He will now face a stringent series of doping tests.
just to clarify that is Stephanie Schumacher