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Monday, October 31, 2005

Free Climbers?

Today I am walking a little funny since I made it into the weight room for the first time. I swear I literally ran into four machines because I felt so out of place. So if I look a little buffer next time you see me, you know why.

Btw, I wanted to give a shout out to AJ at Victory Circle Graphix for making the custom graphics on all the Trek Bikes and Vehicles (he also makes the name stickers for the Discovery Team.) Thank you AJ for hooking up the trailer with a little website bling.

After my rock climbing scare last week, this video sends chills up my spine. Just imagining that there is someone out there that is this crazy sets me back in my chair scratching my head. Read the description above the video and you will see that he unfortunately did not outlive his daring spirit (thanks to Andy Mills for spending time to continually feed me content).

Saturday, October 29, 2005

What goes up must come down...

As I stated before, I have been venturing into the world of slower, more primitive sports, i.e. hiking and running (usually reserved for those being chased). All in all it has been a great way to change it up a bit, but I have come to the conclusion that going downward sucks, I would rather go up all day.... Maybe there is a graceful way to run downhill but I have not found it, I resemble more of a bull in a china shop.

As the excitement for this weekend's festivities build, let me offer my own 2 cents... If you are a cyclist and you are wondering if your costume is appropriate, do the tan line test. If you are revealing too much of your hard earned tan lines, then you are probably pushing the limits (take note from my friend Jeff's costume last year?!?!).

On a final note of the day, check out the most recent velonews article on our squad. A little PR never hurts!

Thursday, October 27, 2005

No Man's Land

Just a quick reminder of what can happen if you choose to dope. This is just one of the side effects of EPO use. BTW Congrats to my man Tristan for killing it on the cross scene and coming up clean all year long!

It is that time of year for me... no strict schedule, do whatever it is I want or don't want to do. I have been staying active running, hiking, doing some yoga, going to start weights, but really I am focusing on becoming more like these guys! Check this out it will make your day!

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Wilderness First Responder

Each time my girlfriend and I venture into the wilderness together, something goes rye?! Last time, we decided to climb a fourteener with one bottle of water amongst the two of us. If it was not for some random guy with Iodine tablets and a high country pond we would have been raisins.

Which brings me to yesterday and why anyone who spends any length of time in the outdoors should do us all a favor and get some sort of Wilderness First Responder Training (including myself). Thank God Jessica is certified because as we were descending from a relaxing afternoon on the trails, we came across a rock climber who had fallen about 20 feet to the rocky boulders below.

It was a pretty eye opening experience and I has impressed with how relaxed and quickly Jessica handled the situation. If I would have been by myself I think I would have just made the situation worse and freaked out. He was suffering from what seemed to be a broken back and legs (I have never seen a grown man in that much pain). Jessica stabilized the situation and kept him talking until we could get a ambulance back to get him out.....Man.... Be thankful to be alive and well today!

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Bump in the Trunk

Actually had to take a shower for the photo shoot yesterday. The results will be up on the JBL, Trek, and hopefully velonews website. Amazing what a difference a professional photographer can make! (Thanks Marty!)

Up next is Zack's Dodge Pick-up, after seeing what Clay can do I can't wait to see/hear the results. Speaking of what Clay can do, check out the means before the ends on this project he has in is shop.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Sensory Overload

As sort of a science experiment I ventured through the doors of "Velo Swap," Denver's very own biker squawk fest, to document the madness from more of a spectator position. My intentions were not to pick up any new gear, but merely to observe the entire scene and how it goes down. It can be quite dangerous, watching a bunch of bike geeks with a pocket full of cash run through an auditorium, trying to get their hands on anything and everything (and then trying to explain to their wives why they bought a bunch of used chamois).

I am not dissing the "gear", when it boils down to it, I love to have sweet stuff just as much as the next guy. But nothing makes me more stoked than seeing someone who uses their gear and then some. Guys like Mike West, who use their gear because it is merely a tool to create an adventure (Mike's stuff is always so clapped out I don't know how it even works half the time).

This is an actual lung of a smoker that was on display! Now put that in your pipe and smoke it. And speaking of getting smoked.... check this poor guy out.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Just Riding Along

Finally, after 3 days of hibernation I ventured back out on the bike today. I think this may have been my longest break off the bike all season? Moab is still sinking in slowly, it is as if everything that happened was a dream and I was on the outside looking in. Doesn't sound normal does it?

This was the first endurance race that I suffered from stomach trouble. Could of been a million things, nerves, dust, stomach bug, too many gummy worms, or just straight up 101 proof exhaustion. If I am feeling hungry things are usually clicking over pretty well, it is a good sign of things to come in later hours. If I am feeling bonked and not wanting to eat, then it is only a matter of time before the check engine light comes on for good.

Here is a quick list of things I keep in my 24 hr food arsenal: Anything wheat and gluten free (wheat causes inflammation), newman's fig newtons, Yerba Mate Tea, Bee Pollen (Clarity), V8 Juice (filled w/ electrolytes), chocolate covered espresso beans, FRS, Quinua Egg Burrittos and straight up sea salt.

Here is a classic case of JRA (just riding along).... enjoy

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

DJ Gould Gives His 2 Cents

this is an audio post - click to play

When Nick Gould is not out sporting his GQ look and spinning his beats, he is out there throwing down the hammer on his fellow D-town crew. Mad Props to Nick and Myles Venzara for throwing down a 3rd place podium effort this past weekend in Moab. Listen in and hear what an XC Norba Pro for Santa Cruz, DJ Golden Boy, thought of his first Duo/Pro 24 hour effort.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

24 Hrs of Moab Race Report

It would be impossible to sum up a 24 hour adventure in one post so I will be filling in the details throughout this week. Most of you know by now that we ended finishing second behind the duo of Jay Henry and Mike Janelle, leaving Brian and I once again hungry for our victory. Brian did throw down the fastest lap of the day and we set a tough pace early. It is hard to stay relaxed when there is so much hype around an event and the energy is so intense. We gave it our best and had a solid race so we are not disappointed with a second place effort.

I don't know what is harder, solo or duo, both are intense in their own respects. But with Duo you come back to your cozy camp for an hour or so, eat some food, let your muscles get nice and tight, your mind gets comfortable, your clothes get cold and sweaty, your ankles begin to swell, and your girl's arms look awfully cozy..... Then before you know it, your getting forced back out on another lap, tearing at everything that just had a chance to relax. Nothing is normal, nothing is healthy, nothing is predictable, and everything hurts.

Your mind takes you places when you suffer this hard, you realize how lucky you are to be alive and capable of such endeavors. You realize how lucky you are to have such a dialed support crew and sponsors that understand what you are out there doing (Thanks to Shep, Steve, Jessica and Jenny for keeping us sane and dialed and everyone else that made this possible!).

Check out Cycling News.com for some sweet pics of how things went down. I will be dropping some 24 hr tips I have learned from my trials and errors this week as well as some random inside stories from the weekend's festivities.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Desert Solitude

this is an audio post - click to play

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Turning Your Power On...

With only one day till Moab, I found myself running around town getting every last detail dialed in... Exhausting. I made it over to see Dr. Rodgers at Colorado Chiropractic Center and walked out of there an inch taller and breathing a whole lot easier. I am a firm believer in Chriropractic work and its ability to turn an athletes power on. I have been blessed enough to get on board with Dr. Jeremy and have him watch my back this coming season (no pun intended)!

With my body dialed, I rolled over to the post office to find some sweet new kicks from Nike (Big thanks to Mr. Jason Fryda!!), the 10/2's, which I will be testing in Moab. I have been playing with different shoes all season, trying to find that perfect fit. I cannot even begin to tell you how stoked I am right now on these shoes, Nike has finally pulled it together to make a sweet set of mtb kicks!

On a side note, I had to share this rather disturbing front yard Ranno and I stumbled upon yesterday...I really would just like to ask the owners where you buy a lawn ordament as beautiful as this and why?

I will be doing my best to keep ya'll up to speed on how things are unfolding in the desert and make sure to stay tuned at grannygear.com for full race updates from real-time scoring.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Live and Learn

It has been a whole year since my last Moab adventure. It feels like just yesterday that I was moaning about going out and doing another lap. As I scroll through the pics from last year, I can feel the excitement building. In a matter of a couple days an entire city is erected in the desert to house one of the craziest cycling events of the year.

The more events like this I do, the more I learn from my mistakes. To prep, I have been sleeping in till 11 daily and packing in early. Mentally I am ready and waiting (waiting is the hardest part).....

I am lucky to have a teammate like Brian "I Live To Make You Suffer" Smith. Ask anyone in Gunny, Brian only knows one speed....Too hard (that is why B-Man trains solo).

And where Brian goes, his trusty side-kick Max follows.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Rollin' In Style

I just got back from picking up my ride from Kustom Kar Audio and I feel like I was just on a Pimp My Ride episode . After one trip around the town, my insides are bouncing and I think I am going to have to turn it down a notch. Thanks to C. Dragon and Clay for making this happen. Make sure to come by and check out the scene in Moab, if I keep shouting "WHAT?" you know it was a loud trip down. My trunk is a piece of art, it blows me away (literally)!

A look at the product in process, the fiberglass box before it went to paint,

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Tough Guy Productions

The rain has been fallen' down all day, which is actually a blessing in disguise, forcing me to relax indoors. Spent most of the day downloading new music and reading my new book, Sport Psychology for Cyclists. Training the mind is just as important as the body.

Speaking of mind over matter, yesterday was my good friend Nat Ross's 34th Birthday and this coming weekend will be his 34th Solo Race (more then anyone else in the world)! Nat is one of the most down to earth bike pro's out there and his resume is a story in itself. When he is not staying up all night and brewing saddle sores on his bike, he is making some sick Telemark Films, check 'em out at Tough Guy Productions.com. Wish him luck next weekend as he defends his Moab title!

Mad Props Nat!

BTW I think I figured out why Sager is a vegetarian. (Besides being an urban hippie in denial)

Saturday, October 08, 2005

College Dropout

Some days your the hammer... other days your the nail, and today I was the nail. I had absolutely nothing and days when I get worked over this hard I try to look back and take in the positive..... Well I am still looking but right now all I know is I need to rest before next weekends Moab blow out. Mentally it can be hard to be the "sponsored pro" when you are expected to always be on, it can make those off days seem that much worse. I am ashamed to admit it but I quit for the first time this season.

**Note to self: Don't stay up till 2 am drinking wine and fighting with your girlfriend, unless you enjoy the sensation of riding like your brakes are on. The world's best athletes learn how to manage and/or eliminate stress in their daily lives (to an extent) and I am still learning.

Some other signs that people were out there suffering! Ranno left a sweet gubber on his bike for you all to enjoy and Sam Schultz (only 20 years old, with the potential to be a U-23 world champion) shows you what happens when you breath to hard at altitude.

BTW the Touareg has officially been pimped, stay tuned as I reveal some mind blowing pics in the next couple days (Clay still is tuning the stereo components)!

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Road Less Traveled

Everyone has that road they pass on their go-to rides and when asked, "What is down there?"... you have no answer. Yesterday my trusty side-kick Ranno and I decided to venture up this old mining road off of Four Mile Canyon, going where no Madone has gone before. This was one of those roads that I have pasted a hundred times before and thought nothing of it.

The road was epic, leading us to many small mining towns and we only turned around (after an hour of climbing) because we needed to change weapons and come back another day with the mountain bikes. Check out this picture of an historic gold mine... crazy!

I challenge you to take that "road less traveled" next time and explore the world around your home! Anything to stay off of Hwy 36!

On a side note I am locked and loaded for 24 hrs of Moab. Speaking of Moab, check out this guys crash, I know exactly where he is and can feel his pain. Only look where you WANT to go.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Mr. Clean Speaks Out

Rolled out to Golden to scope out the course for the collegiate race this weekend. No I am not in college anymore, but yes I am going to try to teach those kids a thing or two this weekend. Ah the days of collegiate racing... brings back great memories of my days back at Whitewater and Fort Lewis. Those where the days, when racing was injected in my veins and the sense of adventure instilled.

This week I was added to the Mr. Clean "hero's" page on www.raceclean.org, a website devoted to keeping our sport clean. Now for the record I don't agree with everything he says on the page but I do agree with his "cause". Check it out, I don't think I have done anything to deserve "hero" status but I definitely am doing it clean.

Quote of the day comes from the latest Powerbar ad, "The miles can build you up, or the miles can wear you down, it's all about how you approach it".... Be great.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Trek/VW's Own Jeremiah Bishop Calls In

this is an audio post - click to play

Jeremiah has a lot going on right now as he is recovering from a broken back, getting back in the saddle and getting hitched this coming weekend. Follow JB and get the low-down on the east coast attraction.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Relaxed and Ready

As Ranno and I grunted our way up the mountain today, we had a conversation about what really sets some of the pros apart. The guys/girls at the top are making it look easy. There are a lot of factors that make that separation, as for myself, my limiter is my technical skills. I am not bad technically, but I am not great either. Guys like Kabush, Craig, Bishop and JHK fly through sections without wasting their precious energy, as I "muscle" my way through.

Hence my new found devotion to exploring the trail systems around my home. Ranno took me on another "new" adventure today, with trails like these you would think my skillz would be dialed in no time!?!

... With the added practice comes more crashes, I ate it again today and check out where my bike ended up (yep it was that steep!).

Ever notice how relaxed Kabush always is, it's as if he is laughing on the inside, "man these guys suck." When in reality he is just focusing on staying relaxed, limber and in the moment, save that energy for the pedals. There is no exception, while racing we are all in the "pain cave", it is just a matter of who can manage it better (avoid the "suffer" face"). Or maybe I just need to grow some sideburns?

My favorite part of the Logan Mill Climb is the greeting crew waiting for you at the top. I always make sure to start whistling about 200 yards from the top so the pups are waiting, tails waggin and all!