Okay, now I've got a blog so I might as well start filling it up with random rantings and 2-minutes discourses on everything that's wrong with everybody...everywhere. No, I don't think this'll be that type of blog. This one will stick pretty close to what I'm doing, and planning to do about the Race Across America this summer.
First, thanks to Morgan for setting this up for me. I told her I wanted to start a blog as a way to let friends and family keep up with my RAAM planning and training, as well as the race itself, and before long she's sending me addresses and passwords. Pretty sure I wouldn't have gotten around to it myself. So I'm glad she took the initiative...
Anyhow, on to the RAAM details...I'm at my friends Tim & Ros's house in Fort Collins, Colorado right now. Tomorrow I'm supposed to start a 4 or 5 day, 950 mile ride to my mother- and father-in-laws house in Davenport, Iowa. And as I should be used to by now, the weather is trying to get in the way. Its about 45 degrees and raining right now and the forecast for tomorrow is for more of the same. I had hoped to ride a minimum of 250 miles tomorrow and if things felt good and the roads seemed safe enough, maybe ride through the night and the next day...stretching it into a 500+ mile ride. Now it looks like that won't happen. That's how it goes. I'll get some miles in either way.
It doesn't seem possible, but I've essentially got only two weeks of training left for RAAM. Especially since I did my first road ride of the year one month ago tomorrow. Coming from Fairbanks I knew my time on the road would be severely limited, that's why I scheduled training trip's to Peter Lekisch's place in TX in April, and to Colorado in May. I knew I had to get a lot out of the little time I had to try and get ready for RAAM. Initially I was really concerned about this scenario, but I think everything is working out okay. I have a huge base after putting in a lot of hours on snow this winter and I feel really fresh and motivated every time I get on my road bike...or have so far at least.
This next week should be the biggest volume week I've ever ridden (races excluded). I should get around 60 hours of riding in. The week after that will be reduced by about 50%. During that time I hope to do a lot of long climbing and high elevation rides around the front range of CO. Then its back to Fairbanks to recover, re-pack, and get ready to head to Oceanside.
This next section is for the bike geeks:
I just finished setting up my Orbea Ora TT bike for the ride to Iowa. Its got two headlights, two taillights, a food pouch on the aero bars, which are about 3 inches higher than they would be an a true aero setup, a second food pack attached to the stem/top tube, a frame pack attached to the top tube/seat tube, a seatpost bottle mount, and a huge rear pack. As Tim said, it looks like it should be a Surly Steamroller or 1978 lugged-steel motobecane touring frame under all the little packs and bags, not a state-of-the-art carbon fiber time machine. Its sort of like renting out a Kentucky Derby contender for 4-hr trail rides. But it works, and doing this ride, on the route I'm doing and without support I need to be able to carry some small amount of gear and food all the time. I'll get a picture of it up here sometime.