Tuesday, August 31, 2010

PIR Finale!

Remember the guy who came up to me at one of my first races and said "What are you doing here? You're obviously not serious."? Well, I do.

I already know the basket's a little silly. That's just how I roll.

I already know I should change to toe clips. But they hurt my sensitive little paws.

What I didn't know before is that I am a racer. Make that Racer with a capital R. Even if I never make it beyond the novice category, this is a new part of my identity as a cyclist.

I placed third last night and the competition were no slouches. I won third overall for the month of August and once again, the competition gave me a run for my money. Go girls!


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

PIR's a scream

Tired from the Portland Century, sure. Too tired to race? No way. Especially now. Alyssa has apparently dropped out. Catherine has first place pretty much sewn up. So it's me and Inge battling for second now. And she knows it. She asked my race number and glanced at a post-it before quickly tucking it into her jersey pocket. (Side note: this is what I love about biking and racing - meeting like minds!)

The sprint was absolutely exhilarating (credit goes to Dictionary.com for this correctly-spelled word). As we came around the final corner, it was ON! Someone started yelping a little and it didn't take long for the rest of us to join in. Guttural primal screams flew out of all 12 racers as we flew and screamed by the black & white checkers.












Blowing kisses.













Me and my "rival" comparing wheel placement at the finish.












Extra special thanks to BikeLoveJones (check out her blog!) for photo-documenting this auspicious event, cheering us on and calling me a MONSTAH at the finish line.

Portland Century

Start with coffee.





















That's what I like to see!


















Wheelsucker.


















The hill aka "bell curve".








Michelle gets a good grade.









Fritz passes too.










Fixies!
















Finish with friends.







Friday, August 20, 2010

Commuting-a-go-go!
















Bike path views.


















Parking lot.
















Pub views.
















190 reasons why I shouldn't drive.













Clear sailing.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

PIR purrrrrr

It was HOT out there last night so I'll use that as my excuse for coming in 6th out of 15. Also, I pulled for more than an entire lap at a time, but another great excuse: I had a stomach ache and wanted to control the pace so I could "rest". Maybe not the best strategy.

However, I beat the two girls that are still in the August points competition so I'm currently in 3rd overall. Do these other girls (Hi Inge, Hi Catherine!) read my blog? Do they obsessively check the OBRA website for results and track their points on a spreadsheet? I mean, I don't do that or anything, but some people might.

Thanks to my three cheerleading friends who came out to spectate - John, Mary, Patty!! It made it extra special and even more fun than usual.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Wednesday night ride


...happened on Tuesday this week.

We went to a party at the Green Dragon and just rode a few miles.

Racer V beer is delicious. Sarah's veggie stir fry with glass noodles - also delicious.

We passed by the WTF Bike Shop, where I took this blurry picture of a band playing in the shop. Rockin!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

PIR 8/9 - 3rd place


Here's a video of the beginning of our bell lap. Find me at :32 seconds. I'm third in line in the second group (closer to the camera).

I almost won it this week! If the finish line had been just 10 yards closer, it would've been mine.

It was a fun race though with lots of chatting about hot "novice women" topics like "gee, your hair smells terrific" and "has Courtney recovered her stolen bike yet?" (it's a blue & white Fuji, keep an eye out!) and "go girl!".

If the series went through September, I might be tempted to try the open women category, but for now I'll sit in novice women and try to cross the finish line first.

Pub crawl


After the 7 Chakra ride, I went home, changed clothes, changed bikes and headed to Mash Tun in Northeast for a pub crawl with Linda, Lisa, Sherri and Troy.

We shared a boot at Prost. A beer with rules - you can't set it down and must continually pass it around. (Check out the guy with the two thumbs up right behind the boot!)

Next stop, the Green Dragon for three dollar toast and five dollar tator tots with our pints. Hopworks was on the agenda but it didn't happen.

Strategy for the next pub crawl: share a pint at each stop, pick one with happy hour food for dinner.

Good times.

Monday, August 9, 2010

7 Chakras


On August 7th, 7 of us rode around Portland on a traveling yoga practice adventure. We honored our root chakras at Root Whole Body, posing outside the studio window while yogis from inside looked on. The sacral, or sexual, chakra had us doing eagle pose on the pedestrian bridge over Powell with a view of a strip club.

For the naval chakra, we headed to the dock across from OMSI with a view of a Naval submarine and did boat pose. Our hearts were honored outside Sacred Heart Church with a spinal twist.

The throat chakra represents sound and communication, but it is also the sacred spot where candy passes into your body from the outside world, so we went to the candyland house on Milwaukee for that pose. We meowed and mooed (cat/cow pose) on the sidewalk across from The 3rd Eye on Hawthorne. And finally downward dog for our "1000-petaled (pedaled?) lotus" crowns at the crown jewel of Ladd Circle. Namasté!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Beer O'Clock


Left work to ride by the Columbia River in all its glory, complete with waterskier, jetboats, beach kids, runners, walkers, rollerbladers, dogs and even some cyclists.
Made a new friend - a guy from my club named Michael. Blogs are great, now I can look back and remember his name. He used to ride a ton and then stopped and recently started again. The Portland Century will be his first century since his "return" to cycling. Not an easy one to start with!
Continued on, stopping to take a picture of my lovely Italian sweetheart, La Torpado. Or should it be El Torpado?

Locked up. Captured my Hello Kitty in a monkey suit charm on film, yes I'm a dork, then ordered a pint of the Racer 5. Seemed appropriate and it was delicious. Met up with Linda and shared stories and beers until the sun was one finger-width from the horizon, our estimation of how long it would take me to get home. We made a good guess, but next time I'll either carry lights or give myself two fingers to get home.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Monday Night PIR 8/2


4th place! Oooh, did I work for it. I finally learned from all those races where I took too many turns pulling, only to be too tired to last long in the final sprint. This time, I stayed in the middle of the pack for all 6 laps, then held a good long sprint at the end, passing two girls and not getting passed.

The best part? I actually felt like I knew what I was doing this time. A few girls asked where I'd been in July and it was nice to know my absence was noticed. One girl told me she wanted to thank me for "coaching" her on her first race several weeks ago. I just remember sucking her wheel and cheering her on. And one girl, with white film around her mouth and bulging eyes, asked me for advice. Me! I told her to drink water and get some sunglasses.

What it comes down to is positive self-talk. Visualization. This lesson has presented itself over and over to me in so many facets of my life. It's ok to tell myself I'm the best.

I love racing for all of its life lessons and camaraderie and strategizing and speed and fun and maybe, one day, glory.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Tour de Cure





I had to get up at 4:45 (yes, in the morning!) to arrive at Hillsboro Stadium in time for the start, but it was totally worth it. This was different than any other event ride start I've experienced before - a very special start - the 100 or so riders doing the century started together and we were "led out" by a racer from American Diabetes Assn team. What a great way to start the day.

The course was gorgeous and some of it was familiar due to overlap with past Harvest Century routes. Beautiful, rolling hills in wine country. There was no traffic save official support vehicles, which was a shame because it was total overkill. Probably 25 or so vehicles for only 100 riders. Geez, it's Tour de Cure, not Tour de France.


I made a new friend - a girl named MaryJean who was wearing the same jersey as me but riding for a different team - The Pedaling Penguins. Never heard of 'em, but great name. She told me you can suck nectar right out of clover buds, which I immediately stopped and tried.

We made up new lyrics for an old camp song. The refrain is "There's a hill on the ride up ahead". It has like 25 verses. While high on clover nectar and singing to the hills we were climbing, we missed a turn and added 10 miles to our day. We really gave 110%!