I don’t have words. The race hurt.
If you are a local to me (Charlotte/Lake Norman, NC) then you should know about the dedication event of the Lake Norman Bicycle Route. The route is planned to circle Lake Norman on marked roads, greenways, and showing points of interest. The route is 3/4 of the way marked and mapped! Read more about it or view the map here.
This Saturday is the event to kick things off, including a bike ride!
Saturday, October 15, 2011 at the Troutman Depot
137 South Main Street, Troutman, NC
Starts at 10am
Description of the Troutman Loop to be ridden after the ceremony Saturday
Begin at Downtown Troutman’s landmark Old Depot at US 21/NC 115 (Main St.) and Wagner Rd. Careful crossing US 21 to start your ride south on Wagner. After 1.5 miles, veer right onto State Park Rd. The scenery becomes more rural and wooded approaching Lake Norman State Park. Past the first bridge, see a parking area at Park Lake. Boats can be rented here during summer. The building provides restrooms and drinking fountain (mid-March to November). A Porta-John is located at the north entrance of the parking lot by the Itusi Mountain Bike Trail entrance. A mile further on State Park Rd., turn right after the Park’s west gate. St. John’s Rd. ends at E. Monbo Rd. Turn right, and in a ¼-mile, veer right to stay on E. Monbo and the Loop. E. Monbo stretches another 4 miles through hilly, rural horse country before reaching Old Mountain Rd. (To visit Daveste’ Vineyards, divert right onto Talley St., past Hicks Creek Rd., and another right onto Lytton Farm.) Continue to Troutman, turning right on Old Mountain Rd. to reach US 21/NC 115. At the light, turn right. After a ¼ mile, turn left at Old Murdock, then right onto Eastway. Notice the “Richardson Greenway” path across from Town Hall. In ¾-mile return to the Depot. If you’re hungry, enjoy one of the several restaurants you just passed along Main St.
This past Interbike I saved my vacation time and dollars for other things, leaving my coverage to be from industry friends and stalking the internet for worthwhile product to talk about. On return from Interbike a few female friends that work within the bicycle industry emailed or texted about the outrage from an article running in the daily version of Bicycle Retailer.
Booth Babes have a Hard Life
The attached scanned in version of the article talks about how difficult the job is. The women are paid between $100-500 a day, and are paid to “attempt to charm strangers and lure them into trade show booths by talking about products you know little about.”
As a woman in the industry that does know what she is talking about this insults me. Pretty faces and large breast may attract guys to the booths, I get that. The ways of marketing to guys isn’t something that bothers me, hell I even second the notion if it means you see more women in the industry supported.
There are Beautiful Women in the Industry
I could give you a list of a 100 women that either work or race within the bicycle industry that could compete in the “looks” category of the booth babes. Here’s a thought :
Hey Mr. Bike Industry Guy, if beautiful women attract people to your booth, why not support more women (that actually ride bikes) year around to attract more people in general to bicycles.
Think of that cute shop girl that sold you a tire a few weeks ago, or the mechanic with full sleeves that could kick your butt in the alley cat. These are the woman we need to turn into poster girls. I bet most women in the industry would be happy talking shop in a booth, to be paid for it would make it that much better.
That $2,000 you spent on the booth girl at Interbike could be spent sponsoring a well deserving female athlete to get to the next level.
Is it the Boobs or That They are Women?
Women are needed in the industry. I wish I could throw you a fancy fact about how women in the bike shop or at shows give off more participation but I can’t. Somewhere there must be one if companies are spending such large amounts of marketing cash for the booth babes at Interbike or Sea Otter.
A friendly, KNOWLEDGABLE, woman with a contagious personality is going to attract all types of people to your booth, shop or company. Women tend not to be as intimidating to strangers, easier to approach and less cliche. This isn’t always true but if you are a bicycle shop employee or consumer you have probably felt the “boys club” feeling when walking into a random bike shop.
This goes for booths as well. A bunch of guys in sweatshirts, tshirts and baggy cargo shorts, guys that could be super nice but not over the top welcoming, I would say this is 7 out of 10 booths at any show I’ve been at. If it isn’t sweatshirts and cargo shorts it is crisp polo’s and khakis that you feel they are above you, if you aren’t going to talk to the about Campy Super Record that they are waiting to put their nose up at you.
Look are Everything
Boobs sell, so do colors, smiles and warm welcomes. An early morning at Sea Otter, a booth with free coffee will have more traffic than any booth with tank top clad boobs. The Luna Chix team trailer at Sea Otter is always slammed. These women are friendly, gave away free food and took the time to talk to everyone interested. They are real women that come back from warm up laps muddy, that are well versed on the bikes they are riding and to me, are the best sales representatives for Orbea that you could ever have.
Find the Women
You want to attract people to your booth with boobs? Put out a call, place and ad for bicycle industry models or racers. Ship in some shop employees that already SELL your PRODUCT.
You want more people riding bikes? Put more women behind your product, on the front of your booth selling it, in the design meetings, on the sales calls, and so on.
This past Sunday I dragged myself out of bed at o’dark 30 to prep myself and brain for my first cyclocross “clinic”. At around 7 o’clock teammate and all around awesome guy, George Berger, picked me up in his little Prius and we were off into the sunrise. The goal was to get to mountains of Boone North Carolina and the Pirate Race Products Cyclocross Clinics.
Walking into a cyclocross clinic I wasn’t sure what to expect. I have participated in cyclocross practices, and various other road/mtb clinics before but never dedicated for cyclocross.
Here are the things I did know:
The clinic was segregated for women and men. There ended up being roughly 12 women that showed up which seemed to be a decent group for learning and trying new things with two instructors.
It would be a long day. The clinic was scheduled from 10 to 4, and I knew from cyclocross practices that I would be completely worn out doing these quick burst of anaerobic effort.
There would be good food. Burrito’s from Black Cat in Boone, if you haven’t been there – go visit soon.
I had no goals. There were things I want to improve on in cyclocross this year, but a specific skill other than not hurting myself, I didn’t have one dead set in mind. Oh wait, that is a lie.I want to be able to do the “flying squirrel” remount by the end of the season. You know that one were you “hop” off the ground and gracefully slide over your saddle like a cowboy on a bareback horse? Yes that is what I want to be able to do.
Drills and practice makes perfect
For 6 hours I was taken back to high school. All the drills and random technique forming (brain numbing) things you would do, and hate, wanting to just PLAY the game you were practicing for. You didn’t want to practice sprints, side to side, crazy legs, etc.
Quickly these feelings went away and I was left really enjoying myself and fellow company. I hope to have video’s of all the things below later this week. Video editing is just not in the time early this week.
Crazy 8′s - You basically take two objects, maybe 20-50 feet apart, with a partner you circle the objects/cones/trees/phone poles in a crazy 8 fashion. Learning how to take the corners properly at speed, while at the same time making sure your partner doesn’t catch or pass you (especially in the corners.)
Hill Climbs – This is the one I avoid, I did it twice and stopped. Find a hill and run up it with your bike. At the top either walk down or hop on your bike to ride back down. We started off slowly, simply picking up our bike and walking up the hill to learn where to place the bike on our shoulders and how to use our free arm to propel ourselves up. After a few times in slow, we then would ride into the hill, dismount and “scurry” up the hill.
Dismounts – A great thing for someone getting used to hopping off the CX bikes, especially with clipless pedals. With some momentum unclip your right foot and swing it over the saddle to be behind your left foot. Simply glide in that position. Once you feel comfortable doing this, repeat but this time swing your right leg back over to and clip back in. Next step is to complete the dismount. There were two schools of thought for this, sliding your right leg between your left leg and bike, or swinging your right leg behind your left and allowing the momentum to unclick you. I don’t feel comfortable the first way, and I’m much faster with the second.
Mounting – At a walking pace work on hip rotation and in motion of your walking stride take your right leg and slide it over the saddle so you “catch” yourself on your inner thigh right below your groin. Work on getting faster and “pushing off” your left leg so you get more speed into the sliding onto the saddle. (This is the one I need to work more on.)
Starts- Try out different gearing for your start, where should you be on your seat, do you do better with your hands on the shifters or in the drops, learn your limits so that you can push them but also land in the top positions in the start of the race. It is always better to allow people to pass you than to pick off people through out the race.
Other things gained at the NC CX clinic
The drills were awesome. Having 12 women to talk about womens CX and learn their ways of doing things, was awesome. Having “hot laps” at the end, was awesome. More than anything I believe the best part was meeting 12 semi-local women that will be on the courses beside me. Having people to talk with, making new friends and hopefully helping grow the sport.
Testing out George’s new Kuat rack was also very informative, if only they came out for a hitch for my new car!
I feel more motivated and able for the season. All I need to work on is my motor and I have over a month to work on that one. Here’s to NC Cyclocross! You can find all the photos over yonder.
Several months ago I had a plan going into the 2011 season. It included a duo race at the 6 Hours of Warrior Creek, a solo at the 6 Hour Grind on the Greenway, a ton of riding and then my first solo at Burn 24 Hour. As any good plan there was a few snags within this. My geared race bike, the Airborne Goblin, showed up a few weeks late which kept me on my fully rigid single speed for the 6 Hours of Warrior Creek, and kept me from racing the 6 Hour Grind. I quickly started commuting on the Goblin and riding it everywhere possible to get used to the fit and gearing.
I’ve never done a 24 hour mountain bike ride on my own, I’ve never come close to that. Even with tons of great inspiration and information from sources like Rebecca Rusch and Team Ergon I still didn’t know exactly what my body would think or my mind would do. Doing my best to prepare myself I lined myself up with some of the best support and gear a person could ask for. Amazing lights from Light & Motion (Seca 700 and Stella 300.) A great pit setup and location, and a great prepared pit crew.
Preparing for a 24 Hour Mountain Bike Race
Friday I pulled a half day of work, finished packing up the little Jetta and headed up to Wilkesboro from Mooresville NC. Quickly setting up my tent in fear of the rain storms headed towards the race course, I can say the purchase of the REI tent and garage was one of my smartest moves this year so far.
Somehow I set up the tent all by myself, losing about 2 lbs of water weight in the process. Looking over my shoulder the whole time at the large RV that was simply sitting there with generator and air conditioning running. Jealousy ran through my head for a moment.
After helping Jason B. with race sign up for 30 or so minutes, I ran out of things to do. I finally sat there in my chair, sucking down water and contemplating my next move. Would it be to nap, eat more beef jerky or go find friends. I sat, and thought about my life until friend, em:pwr teammate and pit neighbor, Stephanie Cole, showed up. We quickly pitched her ez-up, sleeping tent and staked them all to the ground so we could head off to dinner.
What did I eat for dinner the night before my solo race? Really good ribs of course.
Morning of my Race
Sleeping in the tent the night before my race was fine. The weather was perfect and I was sprawled out across two sleeping bags and my Thermarest! The week leading into my race I did my best to be over hydrated. Counting bottles of water as I drank them at work, and having a water bottle near by at all times. I think this was a smart choice but at 11pm, 2am and 4am my bladder thought other wise. The idea of walking around in the dark to the line of port-a-jons, through a large mud puddle and having to wake up enough to do all these things…well it didn’t fly for me. Fortunately for me, I have been taught by my better half to pee in bottles. If you look at the tent photo above we had added a “garage” to the tent. Both sides zip down to provide shelter for the bikes, dogs or whatnot and additional room at night. It also provided a perfect place to “pee in my bottles” in the middle of the night. Between all my wake up calls, I think I filled two bottles and was thankful when 7am came to use a real toilet.
I did my best to setup all my gear, label my batteries, swap my tires from Small Block Eight to the most “mud tire” I owned which is the Bontrager XDX. Checked over my bike and laid out all my gear for the first couple laps. At around 10:30 my pit crew showed up, set up more stuff and prepared themselves for the next 28 hours of their lives.
Introducing my Pit Crew
Somehow I had recruited a few friends to come take care of me, entertain each other and really “hang out” for over 24 hours of their Memorial Day weekend.
Kimberlee - Chef, nutritionist, first aid and medical provider (all of these things came in handy.)
The race, broken down into bite size pieces will be up for tomorrow. I’m still trying to process everything that happened in that short time span of 24 hours. What I did wrong, right and what I need to do better in life to get me further in racing.
Now in it’s seventh year, WRC’s Women’s Night Out is almost here!
WHEN: Wednesday May 4, 6:30p – 9:00p
WHERE: WRC Showroom, Wheat Ridge, CO
WHAT: A women’s-specific cycling tradeshow — over 35 vendors with all the latest in bikes, clothes, gear, events and more!
WHO: You and all your cycling friends!
Refreshments, wine, light hors d’ouevres, and the famed Venus De Miles cupcakes. Expecting 350 / 400 Women . . . and booked 38 Vendors and Women’s Events for our Expo area. Plus Trek, Specialized, Orbea and Cervelo.Catered treats, two wine bars, a beer tasting by Avery Brewing, a dessert table and a chocolate bar. Plus raffles every thirty minutes for Vendor prizes!
PLEASE RSVP here.
If the link does not launch your email program, please send direct to firstname.lastname@example.org WNO RSVP in the subject line.
2011 BIKE! Charlotte is seventeen days of bicycle related events and promotions used to encourage families, friends, and colleagues to break out the bike and use it as a means of transportation and recreation. Events will take place from April 29 through May 15, 2011.
WHAT: A short bike ride to Uptown Charlotte to show your support of cycling to the Mayor and other politicians during the 2011 Mayor’s ride.
WHEN: Friday, April 29th @ 7:30am
WHERE: Start Location: Dowd YMCA (400 E. Morehead St.) in the parking lot behind the YMCA
Seize the opportunity to show support for cycling in Charlotte! Ride and mingle with the Mayor, City Council Members, County Commissioners and other local politicians. It’s a short ride but one of the most important you could ever participate in, if you support cycling in the Queen City! Free breakfast provided by Ruth’s Chris will follow at the The Plaza on Tryon St.
As I’m traveling to the 2011 Sea Otter Classic I wanted a quick reference for everyone in attendance over the four days. Please share and add in comments any other twitter names I left off.
If you are talking about the event, please use #SeaOtter
@BikeShopGirlcom – Bike Shop Girl owner
@Arsbars – Personal handle of Bike Shop Girl
@Airborne_Bikes – Airborne Bicycles (a partner of Bike Shop Girl)
@al_loutit – Cyclist from Canberra, Australia. Riding for JellyBelly p/b Kenda this year in the US.
@andrewhersam – The Competitor Group (VeloNews)
@BeyondCoastal – A healthy alternative to regular sunscreen.
@bikemonterey – Tips for bicycling in Monterey County from local resident since 1981.
@BicycleFashion – Part of Cyclelogical
@BicycleRetailer – The leading trade magazine for the global bicycle industry.
@CarbonDrive – Gates Carbon Drive
@CarltonHawkins – FRS Director of Brand Mkt, Social Media and eCommerce.
@ClifWine – Making great wines and food with a focus on sustainability in the Napa Valley.
@contour_cam – Cameras that inspire people to share epic stories of adventure, travel, and sports from around the world.
@craigrandall – Verde PR
@CrowdTogether – CrowdTogether helps close-knit groups engage and activate their members
@cyclelicious – My friend Fritz from CA
@DBStudiosMedia – Video, web design and all printed materials.
@eva_lu_ – Employee of Felt Bikes
@FeltBicycles – Felt Bikes
@GirlBikeLove – Empower, inspire, encourage more women to ride bikes.
@GoChuyGo – Ride to work. Work to eat. Eat to live. Live to ride!
@GStech - Tech guy from SRAM
@HayesComponents – Hayes Disc Brakes, SUNRinglé, Manitou, Answer, & Wheelsmith.
@HERHelmetThurs – Discounts for male & female cyclists on Thursdays
@Interbike – Interbike’s Rich Kelly
@JeremyHK – Olympic MTB racer, ten-time National Champion. JHK races for the Subaru / Trek professional mountain bike team.
@Jvalen – Motorcycle racer turned runner turned bicycle racer.
@liam_obrien – Think of me when you think of Assos, BMC and Suunto. Wandering sales rep and court jester.
@lmlightlife – Light and Motion Lights.
@MarthaVan – Action Wipes owner. Get clean with Action Wipes
@MasiBicycles – A legendary brand with a bright future!
@matt_simpson1 – New Hampshire
@MikeSted – 9x US National Champion Stunt Rider
@MissRidingKay – Student, Folsom, CA
@MootsCycles – Handcrafted Titanium Bicycles
@MTBR – Mountain Bike Review
@OspreyPacks – Backpacking, hiking and hydration back packs.
@TeamTWENTY12 – Turning Olympic Dreams into Olympic Reality. Sponsored by Peanut Butter & Co.
@thequeenofpain -6x World Champion 2x Leadville 100 Winner and course record holder.
@RadicalLights – Australian Lights for MTB
@rick_vosper – 30-yr Bike Biz veteran. Amazing mind, crusty outer layer
@Ryan_MeyerMTB – MTB Rider from Vancover
@SIDIAmerica – Celebrating 50 years of making the best cyling shoes in the world
@talltylersmith – nuun bike sales chap, avid cyclist, husband to wonderful woman.
@tjwoodruff – Pro mtb’er riding for Trek – Boulder. Owner of and coaching full-time via Momentum Endurance.
@veloimages – father, friend and photographer
@velorambling – Bicycle pedaler & peddler, Velorambler.