Wednesday, March 25, 2009

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

It was brought to my attention that I am slacking in the blog department as I had not posted anything from the race this past weekend. Besides having a "real job" and being busy after said "real job" the last couple nights, I didn't feel that there was anything worth sharing. I was then informed that I was wrong and needed to correct the situation.

The Good...
The race was at Cameron Park in Waco. A fun trail, but also one that takes it's toll as most climbs are "slow down, turn, now CLIMB!" North Texas has not been getting much rain lately - which allows for a lot of time on the trails, but also leads to dry, dusty trail conditions and Cameron Park had it's share of loose and/or powdery trail. During the week prior to the race the rains came down and down and down. While nothing close to epic proportions, it was enough for the Park Rangers and Race Director to cancel postpone the race by one weekend.

While this change affected some racers that had previous commitments, we were still good to go. The rain soaked into the trail and turned loose and powdery into packed and fast. Come Saturday morning pre-ride time the trail was in excellent condition. By race time the trail would dry out some, but at it's worse would be light-years ahead of where it was before the race.

The Bad...
I met up with Jen, who is getting back into riding/racing after taking a hiatus from the bike. Back in the day I dreamed of being able to ride as well as she does. While I can now out sprint her, she still walks away from me in the technical sections.

We started the pre-ride with me leading and Jen behind, complaining that I was going to fast. That may have been the case, but she wouldn't take me up on the offer to trade places. When I bobbled a climb we ended up trading places and most of the whining ceased. Jen was riding and climbing well... which brought about a new selection of whine "I don't have a good race after I had a good pre-ride and I'm having a good pre-ride so I'm gonna suck tomorrow".

The Ugly...
My "race".

My heart rate monitor download from the race:
The blue squiggly line at the bottom is my speed. For 13.5 miles I averaged 8.9mph with a max speed of 19.1mph (the winner of my class averaged a little over 10mph).

The middle red graph line is altitude. Minimum was at about 220', max was about 370' with a total of 650ish' of ascension in one 6.8 mile lap.

The really ugly is the top squiggly red line... that's my heart rate during the race. The line between the orange bar and the top blue section is my max heart rate of 180bpm. My average was 179bpm and the max was 186bpm.

I was basically red-lining it for 1hr40min. Good thing I'm not a fine tuned sports car, because I would have thrown a rod, blown the engine and left an oil puddle in the middle of the trail.

Jen finished 6 of 12 in her race and 10+ minutes faster than me. That also included her trying to take out a tree with her bar-end and hand, then having to pick herself up off the ground.

Oh well... Warda is this weekend. It's not as demanding of a trail, although it has it's own special challenges that I will have to face.

The weekend after is the Ouachita Challenge. 60 miles in the Ouachita Mountains (Arkansas). The distance is doable. The climbing and technical sections will be tough. Doing it all with in the time limits - there in lies the Challenge.

Oh - final note on Waco...

.....The Beautiful:

..........Kyle had a most awesome race.

...............Congrats to him for the win!

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