Sunday, October 24, 2010

Cyclocross Provincials

Any one who knows me, on a bike, will be able to tell you that I am historically lacking in off road abilities.  The few Mountain bike races I have done have resulted in an average crash frequency of twice per lap.  Oddly this is unaffected by the length of a lap; perhaps I should consider events with longer or fewer laps.  I often attribute my inability to remain upright not to a lack of skill, rather to the fact that I am going way to fast.

Like many my first bicycle adventures where off-road and my first bicycle races where MTB races.  My skills were sound, I was confident and would rail any trail as fast as I could.  So what happened?  I got faster that's what.  When I began racing on the road the mountain bike began collecting dust.  I decided to get serious about this sport.  With training and dedication I got stronger and faster, but while my mountain bike collected dust my skills on dirt remained the same.  Before long I was faster than I was good at riding off-road.

Last year I bought myself a cyclocross bike as part of my winter training strategy, and then shortly "caved into" racing in the fall.  The shortest definition of a cyclocross race is: an off-road race on modified road bikes, inwhich the coarse is more difficult to negotiate the faster you go. What began as a no pressure method of keeping fitness soon became warped by my hyper-masochistic-competitive side.  I now have to remind myself that it is the off-season.  "Piloting" has remained a limiting factor.  So this fall anytime I went for a ride, I jumped on my cross-bike and hit the mountain bike trails.  The goal was to become fluid, working with the laws of physics rather than against them.

One of my off-road goals this fall was to attack the provincial championships with everything that it deserves.  This goal was shared by many Saskatchewan Cyclists and the racing proved to be both aggressive and tightly contested.  Like any cyclocross race it began with an eye popping sprint for the hole shot.  Position is critical from the start as a mistake made by you or anyone else could be very costly to YOUR race.  A group of about a dozen remained in tact  through the first of five laps. 

On the second lap the fractures formed.  Four leaders were established and no one was letting up.  At the front of the race I was riding with Steven Cooley (Bike Doctor Saskatoon), Kevin Wiliams (Bike Doctor Saskatoon) and Jaden Aldrich (Fresh Air Experience).  Stephen Cooley was forcing this race to happen! Kevin was the first to fall of the pace, later followed by Jaden.  I am convinced that Stephen eats nails and drinks vinegar.

Stephen and I entered the third lap at ten paces with pistols loaded.  The resulting duel was one of ferociously forced physical obedience.  With Kevin and Jaden chasing our race could only move forward.  We road often shoulder to shoulder forcing the pace and the limits of the course.  With no mercy available from either contestant, the smallest slip was capitalized 10fold.  The lead changed several times as we went shot for shot over the next three laps. 

With two laps remaining the clash raged on, and my body tried to get the better of me.  A decision had to be made.  The energy began to flow, I would decide when this race ends not my body.  Stephen and I raged for two more laps, as my senses no longer perceived time and space beyond the track ahead of me.  With 500m remaining I pipped Stephen on a steep uphill corner for a ten yard gap.  I then defined anaerobic metabolism, as I could not afford to breathe nor look back.  When I saw the line between my toes my hands went up, and I stood on the podium

Training shall be based solely on feel,
while racing shall be guided by sensations and instinct.

Cuylar Conly

Way Cooler Than U!

Jaw on Floor!

Training shall be based solely on feel,
while racing shall be guided by sensations and instinct.

Cuylar Conly

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

phylisophical physics

What is the Answer to the ultimate Question, of Life, the Universe, and everything?
- Douglas Adams

I don`t pretend to know the answer, but this guy might.

Training shall be based solely on feel,
while racing shall be guided by sensations and instinct.

Cuylar Conly

Sunday, October 10, 2010

What do turkies and Cyclocross have in common?

More than you might think, that's what.

-they both look ridiculous.
-each has a unique flavor.
-after too much you have an uneasy stomach.
-you wouldn't want to have it all year round.
-Andy Shleck once ate a deep fried turkey. I'm sure he would have no problem with a deep fried cyclocross race.

-I had some of each today.
-As it turns out turkeys and cyclocross also share the letter "W". Turkies are happen to be an excellent source of the amino acid Tryptophan.

The internationally recognized symbol for Tryptophan is W.  Today I scored a cyclocross W!  The second cyclocross win of the season.   So, cyclocross W and Turkey W all in the same day.  Mmmmm, sooo good.

-One more thing that cyclocross shares with the turkey.  There is always leftovers!  That's right turkey sandwiches and cylcocross for the rest of the week.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Cuylar Conly

Sunday, October 3, 2010

A foot race YO

Yesterday I ran in a cross country race for the first time in 3 years the U of S Huskie Open .  Having not run in a race for so long I was eager, excited and nervous.  My race form was yet unknown to me, though I knew I would be no superman.  My strategy was to focus on myself, to stay in control off the start and then to try to wind things up in the last kms.  A sound tactic if I do say so myself.  To bad I could not pull it off.  

When the race started I was in control and found my rhythm.  I felt strong for 2 laps, then in the 3rd lap I was feeling "it" feeling maxed.  It was in this lap that I made extra effort to stay with a group of ten runners.  Unfortunately when we came to the hill I began to crumple.  The next two laps were damage control.  I fought to hold my pace and to finish the race.  I finished exhausted, I finished.  And I loved it.  You have to love that feeling of shattered self mastery.

I finished a distant 48th in 26,11.  Underwhelming no doubt.  But I intend to make improvements.  If nothing else I hear running keeps you thin.  The Huskie Mens team placed 3rd overall.  In the future I will be glad if I can contribute to team successes. 

My training for Cross country continues to be full on.  This will no doubt improve my running and keep a basic level of fitness.  Unfortunately this has led to a disgusting lack of cycling.  I have spent far too much time off the bike.  Somehow I need to find a way to continue to ride while re-learning how to run.  In all ways that I train my focus is to cycling.

 Training shall be based solely on feel,
while racing shall be guided by sensations and instinct.

Cuylar Conly