Friday, August 22, 2014

Loving the Bike.

Three days in a row!  It feels so good to be out riding.  I think the routine of being off the bike is fading and my groove for being on the bike is on its way back...awesome.
Yesterday was my 9-12 shift which turned into 8-30-2:15, but so retail goes.   I was stressed but for nothing.  I need to learn to chill, I'll feel so much better.  The family was still gone and I had a solid 3-4 hour chuck before they returned.  It actually turned out perfect.

I jumped on my Salsa La Cruz and headed East.  Then it was North onto some gravel.  I've been hitting the road too much this year.  I've forgotten how much I love gravel.  It felt so good to be back on it.  The Garmin was switched to the map page and I just good.
Essentially I skirted Foley, through Gillman, back down to Sauk Rapids and home.  I was able to nab a bit more than 3 hours.

Showered and headed to the Co-Op to pick up my CSA for the week.  When I got home the family had just pulled in.  Some late night, and a season first, BLT's were had, also so good!

I work at noon today so planned an early 2 hour ride to be home in time to hang out with the family.  Turns out they are once again heading to a friends cabin for the day.  Yep, they are all in for a rude awakening once school starts, ha, ha, ha!  So the alarm was shut off.  New plan is to hit up the MTB trail for a bit after they take off.  I too will be back on the alarm clock mode once school starts so I'll take sleeping in when I can.  Plus Sunday will be a somewhat early rise with a planned ride departure of 7:00, which I have to drive too.
So excited for that ride: 100 miles of gravel with about 8 buddies (thus far).  Can't wait.

Happy Weekend.

Thursday, August 21, 2014


Once again the family is gone doing fun stuff: Como Zoo yesterday and Twins game today.  Ah, poor Benny!  After work yesterday I headed out on my most traveled road loop: County Road 8.  While not incredibly exciting I know every corner, rise, and pothole.  It was perfect for a recovery ride.  I stuck to it too.  I thought of extending it but then that starts to lose the "recovery" part.  All in all a great ride.  Even got to practice my flat changing skills!

Off at noon today.  Guessing I'll get our for a spin at some point.  Hoping to hit some gravel up.  I haven't been on the La Cruz for sometime.  Need to get comfortable on that again.

Having worked 12-8 on Monday my week is all off.  I am about a day behind.  Guess that can be good or bad...!


Wednesday, August 20, 2014


Well I did the TNR last night, and survived!
It's been over two weeks since I was on the bike, longer since I've done anything consistent, and longer yet for having done a TNR.
The wind was out of the N/NW, my least favorite way for a group ride.  Getting out of town usually sucks.  Plus we end up doing a similar route which include the rollers into and out of Holdingford...these kill me.  Last night was no different!
I did some pulls and felt ok.  Once we hit the rollers I started to get a pretty good side ache.  That coupled with my fitness and I got dropped by the group of four up front.  We started with 8.  Ended with 4.
The group waited for me in Holdingford and I was able to stick with them for the remainder of the ride.  Guessing the pace eased up some but I was happy nonetheless.  I was tired at the end and ready to be done but was happy how I felt overall.  Another week or so and I should be back to where I was.  It's always odd to be how crappy and out of shape I feel after time off.  But after a few days of being back at it that tends to disappear.

I'm super stoked for this Sunday's gravel ride.  So far I think we have 8-10 riders!  100 miles of gravel...a good tune up for Inspiration.  Give me a shoot if interested.


Monday, August 18, 2014

Baby Steps.

Saturday I worked.  It was busy but was a fun, killer day.  That evening three of us hit up the North Loop for a lap.  I was fortunate enough to have a demo 2015 Salsa carbon Horsethief.  Coming from a fully rigid single speed to a 1x11 full suspension mtb the difference was drastic!  Best word to describe it would be smooth.  The roots, bumps, rocks, etc were smoothed out.  Not only did this save my body but provided me with better handling.  Duh...says everyone with suspension! 

Sunday I was to ride early but those plans were canceled due to the rain.  I was ok with that.  Sunday was to be, technically, my last day of easiness, a break, or whatever you want to call it.  Plus I had some bike work I wanted to get done so I was at work by 9.  We open at noon on Sunday.  Man I got a lot done!

We're currently short staffed with some employees on trips or heading back to school.  Thus I have to work the night shift tonight.  A first for me I think!  Bummed I will miss trail work again.  It is predicted to rain so maybe it will be postponed.  But if not there is Trail Work tonight at the North Loop, 5:30.

Not sure on my plans today.  Bike, gym, run, nothing...
After taking time off I do struggle to get back at it.  Baby steps!

This Sunday, however, will be a long jump.  A few of us, you're welcome to join, are heading out for a 100 mile gravel ride.  One last hurrah before the Inspiration 100.

Happy Week. 

Friday, August 15, 2014

Time To Get Back At It.

Days off from work are a funny thing.  I was anxious about leaving work for 5 days and now that my time is nearing the end I'm anxious to go back...make up your mind already!
My time off the bike will end tomorrow too.  It will have been 9 days without riding and 6 days with doing nothing.  I'm ready to get back ready.  Not just the exercise but also eating well again.  Not riding and poor eating tend to go hand in hand with me!

Yesterday we made our way to the MN Zoo.  It was super cool to see Harper get so excited about the animals.  Between the three kids and myself we never had a melt down!  A huge success when walking in the sun all day is involved.  Another great family day.  
The family jets off to my folks cabin tonight for another weekend of fun.  Already bumming they are leaving.

While I was sweating at the zoo an online conversation (me included) was going on about the upcoming winter events and who was doing what: ITI, Fat Pursuit, AH135, and the Tuscobia 150.  With the cost and time commitment of the ITI I really think I will be doing just the ITI, but this conversation has me thinking!  Maybe just one more!  I need to decide soon as registration opens up next month for the AH135. 

In less than two weeks, August 26th, CX racing resumes in MN!  These are Tuesday night races in the cities and require a lot of juggling on my part to make them.  Nonetheless I hope to make a couple of them.

September 6th the Inspiration 100 goes down.  I'm most excited for this.  Great race, great people, and just all around great fun.

Happy Weekend.  Stop by the shop...I'm working!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Two Days Left.

Back from the lake and I survived!  Actually had a great time with the kids. The crazy great weather helped.
I'm already starting the bumming phase of vacation...fearing the end!  But hey still two full days left.  Not 100% sure what we'll be doing but fun nonetheless.

I'm also coming up on the end of my break from riding. All of August has been pretty casual with this week entirely off. I'm ready to clip in and push the week!


Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Off the Bike.

I know taking time off the bike and time away from exercise is good but I'm not very good at it.  I have issues with my brain!  While I've ridden my bike the month of August it's been spotty, and that's by design.  There also has not been any 100 + mile days.  Plus this week, I'm guessing, will entirely be off the bike. Ahhhhh!
Actually I'm cool with it.  Ha, all three days, counting Saturday and Sunday.  Baby steps, right?!

Today we're heading to the folk's cabin to celebrate Brinna's birthday with her friends.  So it's Jen and I and 5 girls (3 ll yr olds, 1 8 yr old, and 1 2 yr old).  Breathe deep...

I'm hoping we get to go to the MN Zoo near the end of the week as well.

In more biking news the sale of my Mukluk Ti (original) was solidified last night!  Could be more happy for it's new home.  Hope this bike likes to ride as it will get some year round miles!  Thanks Christopher.  So does this mean new bike time for Ben?!  I wish, as I always have my eyes on several bikes I "want".  Nope means I'm debt free!!!  Even better.
I do hope to, later this week, get my All City Zona Nature Boy ready for sale.  I am getting a new Nature Boy disc.  This should be a wash or I may come out ahead as I have many of the parts for the bike already.  I also have a 29er wheel set I need to move (Chris King/Stan's).  I just drag my feet putting stuff up for sale.  Just never know when you may need it, right?!!  The garage needs some cleaning, as does the basement, my locker at work, my cubby upstairs, etc.

Happy TNR.