Major drool factor….
Month: June 2006 (Page 1 of 3)
Work comes this morning that, while Alexandre Vinokourov’s Astana-WÃ¼rth team will be allowed to compete in the Tour de France (which starts tomorrow), Jan Ullrich and Ivan Basso will not be allowed to race due to their names coming up in a major doping probe in Spain. Other riders are implicated, as well, including Oscar Sevilla and Joseba Beloki, as well as T-Mobile’s director, Rudy Pevange. It’s ugly, especially coming so close to the race start.
And in the “coin always has another side” area, the UK’s David Millar, who has served a two-year suspension for doping, returns to pro racing when the Tour kicks off tomorrow. It’s a topsy-turvy world.
Ugh. Cycling politics are getting uglier by the day. Right now, I’m glad I don’t race.
Activity: road cycling
Location: Dupont Circle > Bethesda, MD (Capital Crescent Trail)
Distance: 15.9 miles (mostly flat with gradual hills)
Weather: hot and humid, 86 degrees
Avg HR: 154 (max 171)
A quick evening jaunt to get the legs moving again. Last night’s “Downtown Breakaway” was cancelled due to the record rains that the District (and The Burrow) endured over the weekend: it was still raining quite steadily yesterday evening. So tonight I went out between 7 and 8 pm, just looking to get some miles on the bike before Saturday’s epic ride (it’s within 5 miles of century distance). The LeMond, while heavier than the Seven, felt much more “at home” to me, and it was quite spry. The Crescent Trail had been cleared of any major obstacles (a few trees had fallen and some mud swept over the trail in spots), and there weren’t many people out, other than some runners. The treat was the abundant raspberries that grow along the trail, and they’re just beginning to ripen – yum! I also found another fan of the berries: a young deer, a buck with velvet-covered antlers.
Activity: road cycling
Location: Aliso Viejo, CA > San Clemente, CA
Distance: 54.2 miles (moderately hilly)
Weather: warm and breezy, 75 to 85 degrees
Avg HR: 158 (max 181)
My California ride with Jeff, marathon runner extraordinaire and all-around great guy (tip ‘o the hat to Dianna for hooking us up on IM). Jeff arranged a loaner bike for me from Edge Cyclesports: a Seven Elium SG which is the personal bike of one of the shop’s staff. It’s a $7,500 bike per his setup, and I borrowed it gratis, so long as I didn’t break anything. The bike was a shade too small for me, but I compensated by using low-profile SPD road pedals and my Shimano SPD sandals, which have a lower cleat platform.
And the ride was fantastic! It rode over the Laguna Hills to the Pacific Coast Highway, down through Dana Point and San Clemente to Camp Pendleton. The PCH portion was mostly flat with some long rolls of hills- perfect for a good, fast pace. I went easy with Jeff to warm up over the first 11-or-so miles, then turned up the gas from there. I averaged an estimated 24-26 mph on the flatter middle portion of the ride to Camp Pendleton, and Jeff got a draft from me on the return part of said flat until we reached San Clemente. It was his longest ride ever on his still-new road bike, and he did really, really well. I had better “sea legs” than him, but that’s to be expected, as I’m a cyclist and he’s a runner.
But we both had fun, got to chat and exchange stories, and have a great time in the gorgeous California weather.
We just returned from California (trip report to come soon).
DC has been having record-setting rainfall in our absence.
The leak in The Burrow’s bedroom is essentially fixed – that’s good.
There’s a new leak in the living room – that’s bad.
And I’m reminded that, even though I’m random and like improvisation quite a bit, I don’t like not having control over my own territory.
My mood has not been one for folks to use as a model. sprite has been much better about it, and I only wish I had her patience.
Had a lovely day in Sand Diego today.
We spent a few hours at Coronado Beach. The sand was so soft on the feet, and the water was perfect. I body surfed a bit, and got some sun. We watched pelicans as they dive-bombed for fish, and as they flew in formation just above the surf (and within about 10 feet of us). I have a little burn on the shoulders, but it’s not too bad.
Tonight, we went to the Padres-Mariners game at Petco Park. It’s a gorgeous new facility, very good for baseball. The in-park food is also good, but $8 for a draft beer is insane. The Padres won in 10 innings, 2-1.
After the game, we all went back to the house and played Scattergories – good stuff.
Tomorrow: we head back north to Seal Beach, picking up a gift and a bicycle along the way.
It’s lovely out here in San Diego.
The flight from DCA to Orange County was uneventful. At our layover in Dallas, we saw the U.S. Soccer Team lose to Ghana, and thus see themselves eliminated from the World Cup. C’est la vie, I’m afraid. But they were fully outclassed by the Ghanian team and the Czechs – let’s hope that U.S. Soccer finds a replacement for Bruce Arena, as his messing with the team’s chemistry caused seeding and cohesion problems.
The new iPod was nice, too, though I didn’t say awake long enough to enjoy A Hard Day’s Night on its screen. Perhaps on the way back…..
And Danny and David are wonderful hosts. Their house is simply wonderful, and the views from their deck are lovely. Tonight we go to a Padres-Mariners interleague game, which should be fun.
Activity: road cycling
Location: Dupont Circle > Potomac/Avenel, MD > Rockville, MD
Distance: 42.3 miles (moderately hilly)
Weather: hot and humid, 85 degrees
Avg HR: 163 (max 187)
PPTC “Downtown Breakaway” ride, summer solstice edition. This is the longest route the Tuesday night ride will take, and it’s a doozy: lots of little “wall” hills in the second half of the ride mix things up. I lost a water bottle about 5 miles in and had to race to catch up with the pack – whee! But I kept up a blistering pace throughout, which was a lot of fun. Went through both water bottles by the end of the ride, so I was keeping hydrated. My next major distance ride will be in the greater Los Angeles area, which will be a crazy time.
Activity: road cycling
Location: Dupont Circle > Potomac/Avenel, MD
Distance: 32.9 miles (moderately hilly)
Weather: hazy, hot and humid, 91 degrees
Avg HR: 159 (max 184)
A hot mid-day ride that fit into a limited timeframe, following the usual “Downtown Breakaway” route (mainly due to the abundance of shade on the side streets). The ride was hot, but fine: I kept hydrated, and I managed a good clip coming back to DC. I saw some lizards sunning themselves on the Capital Crescent Trail, which is a first for me.
I also had a run in with some homophobic frat boys about 12 miles into the ride, while cruising along MacArthur Boulevard. These guys pulled up to me in their shit-gold metallic Acura TL, and two of them proceeded to drop their pants and moon me, inserting their fingers into their butts. It was most charming, let me tell you (and some guys really need to consider electrolysis hair removal). At any rate, I said “look, the Log Cabin Republicans have decided to say hi,” and they didn’t seem to get the joke. They just continued to make the case for Darwin’s theory of evolution.
The driver then decided to nudge his car closer to me, likely because I wasn’t altering my path. As I was going 22 mph. at the time, on a road that doesn’t have a shoulder, he was getting close to running me into a roadside full of mud, rocks, glass, and trees – it would’ve been an ugly crash, and I don’t need another season-ending injury (much as I would’ve loved to have them tried for attempted vehicular manslaughter – I remember their license plate number).
So I had to do something to get him to back off. My weapon of choice: my bottle of Gatorade (fruit punch flavor, in case you’re curious, mixed at 70 percent strength). I grabbed the bottle and gave the two moonies a red syrup bath, and it certainly made its way into the tan leather interior of the car, too.
That got the driver to pull away from me, driving ahead while his passengers yelled back “we’re gonna kick your ass up ahead!” So I did what any self-assured cyclist would do: I shifted into high gear and sprinted after them. I caught up with them within about a block, getting up to 35 mph. I yelled “try me” to them, and they hightailed it out of there.
I guess a guy in red, white, blue and black spandex, with shaved (albeit muscular) legs and a ponytail was too much for the sorry, immature assholes to handle. Granted, I could’ve been placing myself at risk, but these kids’ bark is much worse than their bite. They have no spine or self-respect – which is why they are likely Log Cabin Republicans.
The funny thing is that another rider told me to “watch out for some assholes in a tan Acura” about three miles down the road from where I was accosted. He’d been given the biz by them about 40 minutes earlier.
So it was an adventurous ride, as well as a god-awful hot one.
Activity: road cycling
Location: Dupont Circle > Hains Point
Distance: 16.1 miles (flat)
Weather: sunny, 64 degrees
Avg HR: 148 (max 160)
Taking a page out of Wil’s playbook, I did an early morning ride. Unlike her, I wasn’t up at 4:00 am – but I was on the road by 6:15 am, which isn’t shabby for me. The ride was a nice wake-up, and my laps around Hains Point averaged almost 21 mph. – not bad, considering that my HR was fairly well set at 146-149 for the duration. I saw many duck families while out (the beauty of virually no traffic or people out on the point), and the airplanes taking off from DCA were brilliant in the sunrise glow.