Empowering women in cycling

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Improvement Continues to Fuel the Fire

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Last week I posted about the first cyclocross practice of the season. How painful it was to feel so slow, and how I really needed to give myself a head check on where I have been to where I am going.

The past 2 weeks I really have been putting forth effort into a consistent workout regimen. Tracking and plotting on TrainingPeaks.com. Bike riding, jogging and today started back with weight lifting. Goals of cyclocross racing ring in my head, but more than that leading into the 2012 season as injury and worry free. Planned days of active recovery, or general days off that mirror days with family.

Today at lunch I decided to hit up the gym for some basic weights and to weigh in. While I normally weigh in the same time in the mornings, I hadn’t weighed in for over 3 months (I got depressed back in April) and was shocked and surprised today for what I saw.

159 lbs

The last time I looked at the scale I was at 169 (April), earlier in the I was around 180 but I was frustrated and decided to give up on the scale..to live. Boy, am I glad I did so but I am glad I did a mental check today of my progress. There hasn’t been any dieting or active “focused” eating since March and all I’ve been doing is being more aware with what goes in my mouth compared to what type of activity is going on in my life.

I can tell you that seeing the scale today will make it more motivating to wake up early and hit the gym tomorrow morning before work!

Race Face Single Ring for 9/10 Speed

0 Race Face Single Ring

MSRP: $37.99
Details: 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 40T x 104 BCD (4 bolt) 9 and 10 speed Compatible

Running 1×9 or 1×10 is huge these days. With the range you can get on a cassette many folks like the ease of use and less headache of dropping chain, shifting, etc.

I’m sold on the color and plan to be running a blue one on a new cyclocross 1×10 build I’m working on!

Foundry Cycles Broadaxe: Singleatored

1 Foundry Cycles Broadaxe Single Speed

For the 2013 season I’m really focusing on a handful of endurance mountain bike races and then a slew of cross country mountain bike series (SERC, Southern Classic and the Georgia State MTB.) Then in the fall of course will be cyclocross domination (it will be domination and not just participation!)

Looking at my schedule and thinking of bikes for work/demo and brand representation I had a lot to chose from. My rock steady go to bike for the past year has been the Salsa Spearfish. Made to crush endurance with 29er wheels, 100mm front, 80mm rear and a very stable handling platform. As a rep I have many brands to represent and having ridden a Spearfish non-stop for the past year most of my stores have seen that bike, or at least listened to stories of how killer the bike is.

Enter the Foundry Cycles Broadaxe

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Race Recap: NC CX Statesville

2 NC CX Statesville

My words are becoming to mimic a broken record. Lacking or should I say SLACKING off my beautiful training plan. Lots of time in the car, only a handful of bike rides between the Boone Cyclocross race 2 weeks prior and that was also a joke.

Does it sound like I’m setting you up for a big let down of a result? Because I’m not. Just piling on the excuses to get you ready for a result I completely pulled out my rear.

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Trail Riding with Fiona

5 Fiona Trail Dog

Back in 2004 I picked up mountain biking seriously. A friend and I would go 3-4 times a week, crushing the souls of boys on our pink (matching) single speeds. We rocked, we rolled and that year I grew more as a cyclist than any 12 month period in adulthood.

The other unique thing about these rides were our dogs.

Fiona – my Australian Shepard mutt. Kona – Taryn’s squirrel chasing yellow lab.

They kept us entertained in the woods, they gave us (or maybe just me) a feeling of safety. Fiona often would night ride with me when I was alone. Her blinky on her collar and loud barks if she got far off trail are a memory that makes warm and fuzzies in my heart when I think of night riding.

Then Life Got in the Way

I bought a house, my trail riding was snuck in after work or before. Fiona no longer went to work with me everyday but instead was at home, in a yard and bored out of her mind.

Fast forward..

Fiona and I are back on our own. She will be going on dealer visits, road trips and I’ll be sneaking her in to hotels late at night. More importantly, Fiona is back on the trail. This past Thursday I took my cyclocross bike out on a mellow trail in Wilkesboro, NC called Overmountain Victory Trail. The trail is part of the Kerr Scott Trail network. Super mellow, but still a mountain bike feel to it. Perfect for my ‘cross bike and perfect for Fiona’s first day back on the trail. Some how I managed to sneak the 45 minute ride in between a 2 hour car trip and a handful of dealer visits/clinics.

Fiona did perfect. I feared that after 4.5 years of being off the trail (and surrounded by crazy dogs/boys) she would forget her commands. She didn’t. She trailed to my right, near my rear derailleur. When the trail got fast she would drop in behind, when the trail got technical she would run ahead and wait. Encouraging me with her wagging tail and cocked head. “hurry up mom, this is easy!”

We didn’t go far, at one time during the winter months she would be able to knock out 15 or so trail miles. This wasn’t the day for that, this was a mellow 3.5 miles. Stopping often for her to play in the water, to celebrate.

Do you ride with your pup? Not all trails is this legal or safe (for rider and dog) but proper timing and research can lead to a happy dog and rider!

A Week in Review

0 Lazer glasses

These next two months are completely full throttle for me. On one side I have deadlines for pre-season orders on about 7 brands that I represent before Interbike (mid/end September).

This means a ton of driving, this past week around Atlanta and Augusta, the week before around the Triangle and the list keeps going. If you are in the southeast, chances are I’ll be in your hood soon!

On the other hand there is prep work for cyclocross season. 11 hours on the bike this week, and a solid 3 hour ride today. Legs are feeling good and catching back up with my full throttle life. Even had a 30 minute run this morning that wasn’t too painful.

Also…I’m working on my hi-vis accessories on and off the bike!

hi-vis shoes