June 22, 2009

Training for August

Filed under: Bike Racing,Epic Summer of 2009,Trails,Training — Andrea @ 12:37 pm

The past two weeks have yeilded over 43 hours of training- mostly road riding, but also some running and MTB riding. You’d think that I’d be ready for a rest day like today, but I’m pretty itchy to be doing something besides laundry and bike wrenching. This week, I’m gonna cut back a little bit so I can be ready for the Smith & Nephew/ Marx & Benzdorf Grand Prix. I’ll be picking right back up afterward, though, and let that race start another high volume training week that includes some higher intensity efforts on the bike and a little more running.

It’s all in an effort to ready myself for August. The schedule is looking like this:

8th: Bartlett Park Ultras (probably doing the 50k)
15th: Fools Gold 50/100 mile Mountain Bike Race (Goal is to be ready for the 100 miler)
22nd: Berryman 6/12 hour duathlon (Um, 12 hour… duh…)
29th: Devil’s Den Sprint Adventure Race (gonna seem like just a warm-up after the 3 weekends before it!)

So I’ve got to be well-adapted to performing 12 hours of strenuous physical activity in the heat. It’s going to be a killer month, but I think I’ve got a good start on my training base so far. I need to incorporate some longer runs in so that the running during the 1st & 3rd weekends doesn’t kill me too much.

Also, for Fool’s Gold and for the Berryman race, Ryan will probably be off road racing, so if anyone wants to go with and fill camelbacks/kick my butt when I get tired, then shoot me an email.

June 21, 2009

Memphis Pride Fest 2009

Filed under: non-bike — Andrea @ 8:17 pm

After I finished my 50 miler yesterday, I was in the middle of lunch when my friend Megan sent me a text message that I should join her and her girlfriend at the Pride Festival in Midtown. It sounded like an interesting afternoon since, even though I’m not a lesbian, most of my female friends happen to be.

I had a great time there… I met some of Megan’s friends, got into a water balloon fight, and then got some pretty good camera phone photos of the parade:










Medtronic supports gay rights!

Medtronic supports gay rights!

Megan & Ashley

 Ashley & Megan... cutest couple out there

If you see a photo that you like, you’re more than welcome to “steal” it, but I’d appreciate if you give me a link-back or other mention if you post it someplace. Thanks!

The whole experience was a litte bit crazy for me… let’s face it- I shave my head with clippers and a #5 blade guard. While I was there, most people thought that I was just another lesbian. I guess that in everyday life, that when you meet someone, you assume that he or she is straight unless they actually tell you otherwise. While I was there, I guess that the people I met just assumed I was a lesbian unless I told them otherwise. It was fun and thought provoking to live in someone else’s shoes for a few hours. I’m happy I went.

June 20, 2009


Filed under: Bike Racing,non-bike — Andrea @ 12:24 pm

Indy is hot.


Turbo is Bored.


June 19, 2009

Video from Village Creek

Filed under: Epic Summer of 2009 — Andrea @ 8:43 am

Here’s a little video montage from the Village Creek Adventure Race. I’m not in the video except for a frame or two at the beginning, then again at about 2:00 in…

June 17, 2009


Filed under: Product Reviews,Training — Andrea @ 3:26 pm

After washing bikes this morning, I thought up a fun plan for the day’s training. Jens was at Bikes Plus in Germantown getting a brake lever replaced (it wasn’t my fault! Warranty issue…), so I decided that I’d do a training brick (two or more activities back to back) and run to the shop then ride back home. I couldn’t fit my cycling shoes in my camelback, so I just wore my Saloman trail shoes, packed some flat pedals, and strapped my helmet to the back.

I didn’t set out until around 11:00, so yes, it was very hot and humid. It’s OK… there’s only one way to get better at racing in the heat, right? Along the way, I remembered that my dad had been bugging me to “help him” (read- do it myself under his direction) move a load of sand off of a trailer in his yard.

Side note: No one knows why Gerald felt compelled to buy 1 ton of red sand, but you can bet he got a good deal on it.

Anyway- the shop ended up being 11.5 miles away. I drank about two liters of water and ate a powerbar getting there. I chatted for a few minutes, refilled the camelback, and rode 3.5 miles to my parents’ house to move some sand. Surprisingly, it only took about half an hour. Afterward, my mom made a PB&J for me and I washed it down with a few ginger snaps and a dark chocolate truffle. I added some ice to my water and was out the door again to finish my day with a 15 mile ride home. The “nice” thing about riding back to my house from Germantown is that the last 4 miles takes you from the Wolf River up about 150 feet of elevation gain to my house. It’s not really that bad unless you preceed it with 3 hours of other activity, then it’s a bit of a hump.

Gotta clean up & go to the store now. Any suggestions for dinner?

June 16, 2009


Filed under: non-bike — Andrea @ 6:59 am

A few weeks ago, I was debating what type of plants to put in the flower bed since the pansies were starting to look a bit tired. I finally decided that instead of just planting something pretty, that I’d go for a more “functional” route and plant some tomatoes. I was a bit worried that they wouldn’t grow well in the clay-ish soil in the bed, so I mixed some garden soil and a little fertilizer in when I planted them. Since then, they’ve actually done really well- I tied them up this morning:



I’m wondering (but not really caring) what the neighbors think. Hopefully there will be enough tomatoes to pass out to the surrounding houses to ward off any ill will!

June 15, 2009


Filed under: Bike Racing,non-bike — Andrea @ 7:06 am

Here is a gallery of some some random and artsy shots from yesterday’s crit. Click on the thumbnail to see full-sized images:

TDL- the rest of the race

Filed under: Bike Racing — Andrea @ 6:42 am

The time trial was a flat 3 miles… making it really fast. When we arrived at the TT start, it was hot and humid, and there was a nice tailwind. I found out that my start time wasn’t until 7:01pm, so I turned the car on and laid down for a nap. Eventually I warmed up and got going- by my start time, the temp had dropped a couple of degrees (it was probably a chilly 89 degrees), but the tailwind had died. I managed to roll a time of 6 min 40 sec. I may be showing my hand here, but average power for the effort was just over 300 watts. Woohoo! It was good enough for 2nd place (1st was a time of 3:36… I’m pretty confident that I couldn’t have done any better). My time was good enough to move me up to 3rd overall and, with just second separating the top 8 spots, guaranteed a battle in the Sunday criterium.

For those of us looking for a knock-down, drag-out crit, this one didn’t disappoint. A LaSport rider attacked off the start line. The ensuing chase shattered the pack and left six of us up front. All of us threw in some attacks at various parts of the course, which, despite my initial dislike, actually played well to my strengths of a couple of short power-hills and a long stretch of headwind. Despite our best efforts, the six of us stayed together for the finishing sprint.

For the last lap, my position was perfect- behind a Tiger cycling rider who is an excellent sprinter and was stuck at the front of the group in the long headwind before the finish line. When she started to wind up, I stuck to her wheel, then made my move. It could not have been more perfect- I accelerated and veered to her right to pass and win… until she also, for no explicable reason, veered to the right, nearly taking out my front wheel. Instinct kicked in, and instead of swerving from my line, which could have taken someone else out, I backed off for a second and yelled, to which she responded to by getting off my line… but it was too late- the hesitation allowed her to cross the line first with me about half a bike length back. Needless to say, I was pretty pissed. She apologized during the cool down lap, and luckily, even if I’d finished first, it would not have changed the overall results.

So it was just like old times… I finished 2nd to the infamous Debbie Milne (a.k.a. “Tupelo Debbie”). I figured out that road races are starting to bore me (even the more “lively” ones like we had on Saturday), and I don’t mind criteriums as much as I used to. I’ll probably still race the Memphis race (gotta defend my territory) in a couple of weeks.

Here are a few photos:

...and they're off!

...and they're off!


See those feet on the left (in front of my elbows)? That's an attack in progress.

Me- chasing after the first turn

Me- chasing out of the 1st turn and into turn 2


...and you're caught. No, you can't pull through. I'm gonna stay right here until I recover from that and figure out who is still behind me, wish I had the steam to counter-attack, and hope that Debbie doesn't...




The one & only



Back in the chase group, Casey expresses her frustration through her elbows


I'm going for the pass, but between this photo, and the next, lameness...


June 13, 2009

Tour de Louisiane Road Race

Filed under: Bike Racing — Andrea @ 2:32 pm

Someone get me outta here and back into the woods!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

(No story short- the pack generally stayed together… I was daydreaming about chiggers or something and had a lame sprint. Ended up 4th. I think.)

June 10, 2009

Time for a Recon Trip

Filed under: Trail Riding,Trails,Training — Andrea @ 11:41 am

Since part of my success at Village Creek last weekend was due to being a little bit familiar with the park’s layout and trail system, I’ve decided that I need to get out and do some more reconnaissance before the Devil’s Den and Ouachita adventure races. Unlike Village Creek State Park, those are not day trips! So, I’m going to go on a bit of a road trip next week and hang out for some riding/running in both areas for a day or two. Who knows- maybe I’ll stop by Lake Sylvia along the way back.

‘Til then, I’ve got some road racing to do at the Tour de Louisiane down in Covington, LA. Should turn out to be a great training week if everything goes as planned!

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