Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Finally I did well!!!

I got 4th and 8th this past weekend at U of Michigan and Michigan State U. I am really pleased to have final done well in some races and earn some points towards going towards nationals. It looks like it will be a battle to qualify for nationals either as a team or individual but I am up to the challenge and am ready to throw down both this weekend and at Regionals at OSU.
My result Saturday was better than I expected but somehow I made the right moves. I ended up in a break with 3 marian riders and me! I was really tired and could barely pull but I managed to hold their wheels and it was only fair to let them get 1-3 because they were nice enough not to attack and drop me which would have resulted in me getting caught and passed by a lot of other riders. Sundays race was a bit weird with about 15 of us sprinting at the end and a Marian rider off the front. Chris and I finished 8th and 9th but we probably could have done better if we had sprinted earlier. My only goal with this collegiate season is to get to nationals so I can hopefully improve on my 8th place in the crit last year and to have a great final season with my Purdue team that I and my teammates have worked hard to build into one of the biggest and funnest teams in the Midwest Collegiate Cycling Conference. This weekend is our road race on a course that I helped design 3 years ago. I hope I can pull off a good result in front of my home crowd!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Double post (I wrote it in the car on the way to Arkanas last week)

This was another busy week but Day light savings time let me ride every day which was great. I could come home from school at 6pm and still get in an hour ride! I am sitting in the car driving to Arkansas for spring break as I write this. I had a test Friday which went pretty well (I think) and I had a major paper due as well. I also had a food demonstration for my nutrition communication class. Think a 10 minute version of a cooking show and that is what we did for my class. We partnered up and had to make 2 things for our class. Basically we all made awesome food and got our breakfast and lunch in class. My partner Anna and I made granola bars and a strawberry banana smoothie. The granola bars were amazing and very chocolaty. That was probably the most fun class of the semester. We ate chicken pot pies, fruit pizzas, smoothies, salsas, and much more. I am really glad to be on spring break now. I am still gonna try to get ahead on homework but I plan to ride and relax some as well. Also we celebrated Joey’s 21st birthday on Thursday which was really fun. Happy Birthday Joey I am looking forward to more fun before I graduate. Sunday is the Hell’s Kitchen Road race which should be fun. I am betting on Greg, Naveen and Joey to win each of their categories.

Now I understand!!

I finally figured out why people in Arkansas drive beat up old pick up trucks. On Friday Naveen and I decided to drive to White Rock Mountain and do an epic hike. We got an epic drive as well. It was 25 miles of crazy steep, narrow and rocky dirt roads to get to this place. I thought the little Honda Fit was gonna shake apart! It was well worth the drive however and we got a really epic hike. There were water falls, cliffs, and lots of rocks. The reason we were hiking was the fact that I got a saddle sore which made riding for most of the week pretty painful. This has been a recurring problem for me as many of you know but I made the best of it and did 2 epic hikes in between the rides. With 20 people this still proved to be a pretty epic spring break trip. One night myself and 3 others spent 2 + hours preparing BBQ chicken for 20 people. We basically used every dish from all 3 of our cabins and then spent over 1 hour doing dishes. It was well worth it. It is just now sinking in that this is gonna be my last spring break trip. I can’t believe in less than 3 months I will be done with college!! Every year I come back from Arkansas wanting more and saying that I am gonna move there someday! We will see in April after I find out about the dietetic internships!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

The Passion (for biking)

This weekend we raced at Depauw and it didn't really go as well as I had hoped. I didn't get dropped or anything but I dropped the ball on making the good breakaway both days which was frustrating. The TTT saturday went well with our A team getting 5th but that was more due to Joey and Naveen pulling really hard than me. Chris managed to score 3rd both days which was awesome. Brian R won the crit today by a hair in a photo finish. Andy S got 3rd in Men D for the crit too. Kara and Aimee also both got top 10 in the Women's B Sunday. I was really happy to see how well our team has been riding in all categories.
Now I have to figure out what I need to do to start getting better. I have already figured out that I am not in as good of shape right now as in previous seasons for a variety of reasons including the the 3 week vacation to Europe in the winter that involved no training and a lot less training this past winter due to school and other comittments. But now it is time to move forward and get back what helped me do so well last year and that is THE PASSION. What is THE PASSION? It is a passion for bike riding and doing lots of rides that help you get that passion for riding is what helped made me strong last season. For me this means doing lots of long easy rides where I can explore new roads. I also like to do some of these rides solo since my pace is usually a little slower than other riders while training. I was really concerned about doing well this weekend so I could get points for qualifying for natz but now I realized that I did the best last year when I didn't put pressure on myself and just raced for the fun of it. So now I need to get the passion back but how am I going to do it?
I have a few key opportunities for getting some serious passion rides in. The first is spring break in Arkansas. I plan to do at least 3 or 4 long rides on roads that I have never ridden there before and that means they are gonna involve crazy dirt roads. The second is Easter weekend and I am planning to kill 2 birds with one stone. I am going to ride from Purdue to the University of Illinois to visit my girl friend Ellen. So if you see me at the races or around campus ask me how my 2 main goals of not getting mad after any race and getting the passion back are going!

Monday, March 2, 2009


This weekend was the first of the Midwest Collegiate Cycling Conference road series. It was at Murray State University in Kentucky. It was pretty wild weather and even wilder courses. On Saturday I was the official for the Men’s C race so I followed them in my car. My teammate Naveen John had an awesome day. He broke away in the first lap and never looked back. I was amazed and excited!! Brian R and Andrew O also notched top 10s while blocking for Naveen. My race was OK but I didn’t get a good result. I didn’t really eat enough before the race or bring enough food with me. However Joey I got in the winning break and placed 5th which was great!!! I was so proud of Joey he has improved so much over the last 2 years!! After this weekend I am expecting more big things from him this season!!! Chris and I basically stayed in the field and tried to sprint. Chris fared better in that than I did but at least I didn’t get dropped! It was pretty bad conditions with rain, snow, sleet and about 35 degrees for 64 miles. Murray created a very fun, safe, challenging and scenic race course.Sunday was the criterium and we woke up to an inch of snow but not much on the roads. The course was less than 1 mile and had like 12 turns or something crazy like that. Seemed like a good course for me but with my tough classes this semester I am pretty far behind on the whole training thing and couldn’t really follow anyone very well. I started off with the lead group for about 10 minutes of 60 and I kept losing time in the corners which many people were crashing in. I think I finished 12th but I just kept getting passed and basically rode alone the whole time. It was a relentless course and I still enjoyed it but hopefully I get a lot stronger come April so we can qualify for nationals! Purdue’s Men’s D team turned in some good performances with 2 top tens from George and Chris L. Brian got 3rd in the Men’s C which was another good finish for him. For myself I was just happy to get the first weekend of racing out of the way and not have crashed. I am confident next weekend’s races at Depauw will bring better results.