Saturday, November 24, 2012

Triple D Winter Race: Training Log 1

Mud flats: Black Hawk Creek
Okay- Turkey Day is gone, no more 3GR rides till next Spring, and now it's time for some training for the Triple D Winter Race coming up January 20th, 2013. (Registration is open now, by the way.)

This will be my second attempt at it. Last year I finished and came in 22nd place. Not bad for an old guy! So I am putting in some effort ahead of time to allow me to make a decent showing at this event.

That might have been the Turkey Burn out at the Camp, but I was tasked with sourcing a hair cut for my shaggy maned Son, so with the barber closing at noon, any morning chances at riding were not going to be possible for me. I ended up dinking around in the basement after the shearing session and turned my titanium Mukluk into a single speed. Then it was a bit of lunch, kitting up, and heading out on the Snow Dog for a bit of a ride in the Green Belt.

On the way out, I noted that the Black Hawk Creek was so low due to the continued dry weather we've had that I could ride under the Ansborough Bridge instead of across it. That was pretty fun. The mud flats would have been very messy if the temperatures would have been over freezing, but since the air was chilled, the traverse was easily done without a mess.

Safety Stop on the Marky-Mark
I went as far as I could go, then was forced up a ten foot high embankment covered in dead weeds. This led to bushwhacking my way along a deer trail until I got back to an ATV trail where I remounted the bike.  This led, in turn, to the trail proper.

I rode out and hit up the Marky-Mark trail again. I wasn't real sure how far I was going to go out in the Green Belt, but I was feeling okay. Even my leg that I biffed on Thursday was doing well.

So, I ended up doing the entire Green Belt trail out to the end. I turned around and headed back with darkening skies to my right. Darkness comes early this time of the year! About 3/4's of the way back I met a fellow on a Trek 820 with his enormous, hairy dog. He stopped me to ask about the bike- (of course!)- and thought it looked like a great idea........until he heard the cost of entry to fat town! My wheels cost more than his entire bike. It is a bit of a problem, but then, they don't make a lot of these bikes, do they? Maybe at some point we'll see prices start to become a bit more reasonable for these machines, but I doubt it will ever become like buying a Trek 820!

Well, I made it home before dark and was out for over two hours grinding away on the Snow Dog. I wore an Osprey Escapist 30 hydration pack with some gear and about a half a payload of water in it. I wore a base layer, a Twin Six merino wool hoodie, and a Trek Oslo winter soft shell over that. For pants I wore my Dickies cotton twill pants. A pair of Salsa Cycles wool socks and my Keen Brixen boots were on my feet. I wore Planet Bike Borealis gloves.

 Mystery cross
Everything worked great in the mid-20°F temperatures I rode in. The wind came up there towards the end of the ride, but it wasn't a big deal. If it were colder, I would have modified my get up a bit, but I typically will wear a bit less than some folks, since I tend to stay warm.

As far as nutrition, I am working on an anti-freeze mix for my water bottles. (I used something along these lines last year with great success) I did not take anything solid or gel-like to eat though. I probably should have because I was getting some "tireds" after the ride, which tells me my body needed to eat. I'll be working in some nutrition on the longer rides soon.

Stay tuned for more Triple D Training updates.

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