If you didn't go last night, you missed a really fun and entertaining evening at Amgen with Bob Roll MC'ing a talk with Jens Voight and Stuart O'Grady. Big-time super-star bike racers, those two.
All three of the guys are a crack-up. Gina was so desperate for a date that she agreed to go with me to this thing, and I think she actually enjoyed herself. In fact, after I went to get some food, I returned to see Jens with his arm around her... Dang, younger, taller, and faster than me! Naturally I snapped a pic for evidence...
Later we learned that Jens has five (5!!) kids at home!
A fun night with great organization by Jerry and the Amgen crew. Hopefully a lot of money was raised for the Breakaway From Cancer program.
TrueSport used to be a daily stop on my web surfing rounds, but when Max Kash Agro, esq. hung up his wheels and his pen, I stopped visiting so often. MKA is hands down the most entertaining writer I've ever read in the cycling world. No contest. In my opinion.
So imagine my delight when a few weeks ago I happened on over there to discover a new MKA story. A series really, about another big-shot lawyer infected by the cycling bug. Here, if you have 10-20 minutes to spare, get yourself caught up:
...and then stay tuned for future MKA episodes.
Now another talented writer over there at Truesport is Druber's brother, who also goes by the name Druber, and I forget whether he's older or younger, but he's definitely larger, so we'll refer to him as Druber the Larger. Anyway, it seems as though Druber the Larger came out to California recently (he hails from that hotbed of bike racing, Illinois/Indiana) and partook in the early-season classic Boulevard RR in the 45+. Read his entertaining race report. Good stuff... whether or not it's accurate is irrelevant.
A few days ago at dinner, Gina dropped a paper on me about Tabata Intervals. Ever heard of these? I hadn't either, but the paper claimed a significant improvement in VO2Max and Anaerobic Capacity by a set of riders who did these workouts five days a week, as compared to a control group who did two hours daily of steady sweet-spot riding. Or something like that. Best as I can tell, the protocol is to do 20 seconds ON and then 10 seconds OFF, for a total of eight intervals. So what's "ON"? Really freakin' hard; "all out" was the phrase used. Or for power users, "ON" should be 170% of your VO2Max power according to some reference I found.
Being curious, I tried this workout a few days ago, and it was very intense. I completed eight intervals, but after the 4th one, I couldn't reach the effort level of the prior ones. Not even close. I'd be amazed if anyone can do all eight as hard as prescribed.
It's probably a crock of doo-doo, but I think I'll try a few more sessions of this.
Lot's of people will do more than one crit in a day, perhaps doubling up with a Masters race and a category race. Some women riders will do an extra race with the men. Why not, often the crits are only 40-50 minutes and you've invested a lot of time to get there, so you might as well do some riding.
But I was shocked when I perused the results of the Southern Nevada Stage Race a few days ago. Check out the 35+ and the 45+ results. Louie Amelburu did both! Both stage races!! Two TT's back to back, two crits, and most amazingly, two road races. And according to the SB guys who went, it was brutally tough just doing a single road race. Could this be real? Sheesh, is Louie gonna be killing it this year or what?
More useless perusing of the internet... I've had the impression that Junior racing is on the rise after many years of low participation. Poking around at some pre-entry lists for NorCal races suggests the trend is real. Nearly 100 juniors are entered for the Cherry Pie race in Napa. That's huge! And a very promising sign for the future.
But lest you get too excited, the sport is still heavily skewed toward the old-geezer end. I checked the SoCal USCF database and found that in 2007 there were a tad fewer than 200 licensed juniors (18 and under, boys and girls). Guess how many riders between age 40 and 49...