101 fun loving laps

So tonight started the 2009 track season for me. I’d love to tell you all about my great fitness – my superbe riding…. but well, I rode. I was testing out some new handlebars for Zipp and I did a lot of just riding. It was good… but I found myself kind of wanting to go back to Colorado Springs for a session or two. Ride with my old friends and teammates, enjoy a post ride pizza at Il’vicinos, enjoy a good case of track hack… enjoy a smooth track for a bit. Now, I’ve thought through it hundreds of times and know that even if I were back in CO… it wouldn’t be “the same”. It wouldn’t be better, worse … just different. I’ve come a long way in adjusting to the ATL and it’s alright here… but I have no crew. In COS, I had a crew… I still keep in touch with many of them online – which is awesome. I am thankful for email, facebook, twitter and whatever as it makes it super easy but some how without a homemade rootbeer and a Campagnola it’s not the same.

I’d give a few people a shout out – but you know who you are! Now I have 2 weeks to get in shape for the season – better get crackin!

Team in Training – w/a touch of my continuing Comcast nightmare

I sit here, typing thing in “TextPad” which is basically Apple’s version of “Wordpad” in windows. A simple text editor. I’d love to enter it directly on my blog like I normally do, but Comcast has, yet again, failed to perform. In this situation, I believe some chuckle head probably hit a pole or something. My phone and internet worked less than 8 hours ago, they claim an area wide outage… I’ll cut them some slack, but I will be talking to Evelyn on Wednesday (her next day at work).

Anyway, back to my regularly scheduled blog… Yesterday was our first Team in Training “GTR” or group training ride. It started a little slow and I am not talking about the riding. We had two meetings and then bike check. I managed to escape without getting my bike checked – which is good. Sarah and I really don’t need a lot of bike checking… my bike would have likely confused the poor fellas. I decided to ride my fixie. It’s easier to ride at more casual speeds. It proved to be a good choice, for myself.

The ride was interesting. We rode around the “Buckhead” area of Atlanta. For those of you that don’t know … that’s the low-rent-district. Homes in this area often sell for 7 digits… No to homes are alike, but you have to remember what the one before looked like because they are all spaced out and there is lots of trees between them. (please note, if you missed it – my comments about low rent were sarcastic 🙂

Sarah did great. She was nervous – I could tell. There were a few squirrels on the ride which I quickly identified and quietly pointed out. I helped her find some “save zones” to ride amongst the group and she did great with that. Having not ridden in a while, she was a little “off her game” on the bicycle. I told her that would get better with a few more rides. Soon she will be riding, standing, shifting, turning like a pro.

I was a little taken back by the coach that pulled us all over to talk about various aspects of cycling and told us to never use your front brake when going fast. It took everything I had to bite my lip and not call bull**** on that. The front brake is the most effective brake. Over 60% of your stopping power comes from your front brake. If you are going to avoid using your front brake, you are going to double your stopping distance. As a rider and a coach, I prefer to teach people how to properly use their brakes. He also said you need to be careful and control your speed – his rule is when his computer says 32 mph he needs to slow down… As Sarah pointed out, he is a Senior Citizen – with SENIOR being the key word in that sentence.

The ride was tough – I’m not going to kid you on that. The coach told Sarah, they hit you hard with a tough ride very early. As you progress through your training, you get stronger and then come back to the initial hills and feel really good about yourself. I can see that. The hills were all pretty short… steep – but not that long, which was good. I think it came out close to 20 miles. It was definitely Sarah’s hardest ride. She has a lot more to come, but in due time! The coaches were helping her, which is good. A great first experience!

That not so fresh feeling

I had it, but I’ve done some stuff to change that.  I’ve updated my blog theme and re-organized the side a bit.  The key thing I’ve done is integrated my twitter stuff.  For those of you who haven’t found twitter yet, you have now!  Twitter is a platform for what is called “micro-blogging”.  You are limited to 140 characters – you can basically comment or say what you are doing how.  You can find my twitter feed @ http://twitter.com/scottpatton if you are so inclined.  You can do all kinds of cool stuff like update it with your cell sync it with your facebook and your blog.  There are TONS of people on there including our new president, Lance Armstrong, friends, family and people you couldn’t POSSIBLY care about… It’s there if you want to use it!

As you may have picked up if you are following me on FB or any other place, the quest for fitness has been rekindled.  I hate to admit it, but I lack the fire I had last year.  I have this feeling (right now) like “I did this last year…. why do it now… only to have to do it again”.  I mean, how many times have I (and kabillions of other people) lost a butt load of pounds, FELT SO FREEKING GOOD…. only to start eating like you used to, forgetting to work out…. bleh… it’s painful to think about.

Last year, I got motivated and ran a streak of 50+ days with intentional exercise.  I’m at 2 right now.  2… 50+ more to go.  The cool thing I have going for me is that Sarah is now gearing up for her next Team in Training event.  She will be riding the “Fletcher Flyer” in June.  Yes, I said RIDING!  I’m very excited to have her doing a sport I can easily support her in her efforts.  I will also be riding the Flyer with her.  We have a few months to get ready for the 100 mile jaunt around North Carolina.  I’ve ridden a Century in Pennsylvania, Maryland and Florida.  Time to add NC!