Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Meaty Beaty Big & Bouncy

Yesterday was my first cyclocross race and I did well. In the 30 minute beginner race I was the first female to finish and 9th overall. I got in 3 laps on the course. I was happy with the way my race went. I worked hard the whole time and had a blast. I got there early so I could pre ride the course and see what was going to happen in the loop so I knew going in where the challenges were. It was a great decision I already knew where everything was, where I was going to need to dismount and run the bike, etc.  The race director was teasing me that I was going to be tired before it even started. Time came to line up and I decided to go aggressive and line up in front. My thoughts being we start on a paved road before we get into any technical sections and I wanted to get ahead of any problems that might be occur with riders. So the gun went off and I sprinted down the street and was in the top 5 riders to hit the course. The course consisted of a lot of sharp turning on grass, dirt, rocks and mud. It also included two sets of 3 barriers. The first set seemed to be lower in height than the second set of 3. I did well getting over them. My mounts/ dismounts were decent. I had good jumps going over the barriers and I didn’t catch my bike on the barriers so all went well there. I also did ok on the turning for the most part. Sometimes I didn’t get the greatest line but none of them were too bad.  There was one section that had a rock wall build in the ground of large rocks of various heights. I felt it too aggressive for a cross bike and decided I would dismount and run my bike through that section every time. I figured if I tried to ride it and fell it would cost me time and even if I didn’t fall it would be slow riding so in the name of efficiency I ran it. In my race no one rode it. In the hour race after mine 2  riders braved it but they had mountain bikes. So far the most part no one rode it. The other section I had to run my bike was this 180 degree turn into a steep short uphill that was all loose mud/dirt. I never saw anyone ride it in either race. You lost so much momentum  going around that turn and the surface was so loose that it was just faster to dismount and run the bike. The hill itself was short and probably ride able. I think it’s just where it was placed that made it so tough. There were a few steep rocky dirty descends but I just kept my weight shifted to the back of my bike and hopped for the best.  There was only one thing I didn’t do on the course and that was the fire jumps. There were 2 setup in the course but there was plenty of room to ride between them so I decided since I never practice jumping my bike especially over fire it would probably be fastest to just ride pasted them. That’s not really a cross element so I was surprised to see it in there. Every time I rode past that section the spectators were chanting fire jump at me and I would ignore them and then when I wouldn’t do it they would boo me but I didn’t much care.  It was kind of funny but I was more interested in racing as fast as possible than with throwing in tricks for the crowd. The jumps were NOT high and I am sure I could have done them but if I missed it would have cost me time and I would have been upset to lose time on something like that. I had to work the entire time as I had a girl chasing me most of the way. I had a technical mistake on my second lap. I had to ride through a sections of rocks and dirt and the rocks were a bit big for a cross bike so I was going wider than I would have liked. She took that opportunity to pass me and I knew I had to shut the door so after that section was pulled up onto a short stretch of paved road. I hammered it and flew pasted her. I knew I had to keep on it. My avg HR was 166 but most of the time I saw it at 170-173. So I was working. On our final lap she tried to take me out but running faster down the rock section where we were carrying our bikes. I flying mounted off of that and took off down the grass regaining my lead. I knew I had to go hard the rest of the way or she would take advantage of any mistake I  made.  But I held out for the win.  She was the next rider to finish behind me but there was a decent amount of time and space between us so it wasn’t a close finish.  I was happy I didn’t fall I saw a few people crash on the course. Nothing serious they all got back up to ride.  I do however have bruises on my inner thighs, right hip, right knee, right shoulder and some stratches too. I probably was throwing my bike around a bike more than I realized. I also got hit with other riders bikes a couple of times going over barriers and on that hill when we were running and carrying them. My traps were really sore the next day most likely from as chris puts it “manhandling” my bike. It doesn’t seem like your carrying it that much but it had to be from that.  There are 2 more races in the series and I am considering moving up to the 1 hour open class race even through ill be suffering out there twice as long!  I am also considering going to race on Sunday in a difference cross race series where I will have to race with the cat 1 – 4 women.

Went to a yoga class Sunday night to try to stretch the race out of me. It was little more intense that I was expecting but it was all good stuff.

Monday – swim – 10 x 50 on 15 sec rest to warmup plus a 300 pulling. Then 400 yards, 4 x 100, 300 yard, 3 x 100, 200 yard, 2 x 100 all on seconds rest. The 100’s were ranging in the 133- 137 range. 100 breaststroke and 100 backstroke to cool down.

Also took an easy spin on my road bike (in the rain) for 30 minutes to spin out the legs. I kept it a mostly flat ride to keep it easier. I got a road id. Now I just have to remember to wear it!

Tuesday – Yoga Class to start the day.  CF wod – 25 pushups, 25 situps, 25 squats to warmup then 10 rounds of 10 step up per leg and 1 minute plank hold.  The knee did ok during the wod. Ill see how it fares for the rest of the day.


  1. Awesome Cross result! I never tried Cyclocross - thought about it, but never pulled the trigger.

  2. you should try it. it's super fun and an intense workout. Great offseason stuff from tri.