Nerd life by @newrelic

Nerd life by @newrelic

Hi Lynne - just read your post on the Meet the Team event, and saw the reference to there not being a women's Tour de France. Just thought you might be interested in that there is a TdF for women, and Giro and many others as well. Unfortunately there was to adequate funding in 2011 or 2012 to support the women's TdF, and Tour d Laude was cancelled as well. Never the less, there is a very large pro women's racing circuit in Europe, and the US has a much lesser version. Cheers! Eric — Asked by eric-lynch

Thanks Eric!

I was dropped by a Google Street View car!

He was staring at me.
I was glaring right back.

It was the top of Alpine Rd just as it splits and turns LF to Joaquin Rd. It felt like an eternity (imagine tumble weeds blowing across the road between us) as the Google car wanted me to go up the hill first.

"Fine!" I said under my breath as I mustered more strength to huff-puff my way hoping not to expose any humiliation of this (new to me) nasty hill.

Confession:  I was a bit lost…

Alpine Rd is a gorgeous meandering road that leads up to Joaquin but I had no idea there was this steep road waiting for me & I had ran out of water and gel/bars. I wanted to get up to Skyline from Alpine but I guess it was not meant to be.

The following are the photos. It was a defeat and darn it, Google maps might have me on Joaquin Road, Portola Valley or maybe they’ll Photoshop me out. You can see the corner of the white car as it passes.

MARCH 16, Tour de Dung #1 Beginner Women’s Race(Sequim)

36 miles, three laps. (My second race) Cat4B

I am so glad that I decided to do this race, just for the learning experience and because we were mostly a field of newb riders (it was windy!). This route has wider roads, a shoulder and not many hills to content with, but the weather and high winds made this day challenging.

I didn’t feel like doing Sequim the night before. I was thinking of different excuses not to do it. Well, I did have a legit excuse; It’s been 3 days since I fell off my bike on Blanchard and my neck muscles, knee and bruised hip has been nagging, but since I pre-registered for this race I figured I better go. If I get dropped at least I’d get a good workout and be there to support my teammates.

Adrenalin kicked in at the Dungeness recreation area (hence the name Tour de Dung, but I think it should be “Dunge”!); It was drizzling at the start, low 40’s but increased to rain showers later in the day. I warmed up  on my trainer for ~40 mins and couldn’t decide what to wear in that stereotypical chick sense (yes, you’d think it would be easy, but with the increasing rain & wind slowly picking up I wore a wind vest, my ss jersey/thermal capri bib and a borrowed Defeet long sleeve undershirt (which incidentally does a great job at regulating body temperature!). I didn’t know where to put my packet of GU, most of my teammates preferred to slip it under their shorts (it’s a little hard to reach in the back pocket), so instead of carrying it I quickly squirted a packet, threw some water back and went off to line up in the gravel parking lot with the others.

Roll out was uneventful. This was the first time WSBA had a Cat4B category and 30 gals and three higher mentor cats joined us, it was great! The number one advice from them: Talk to each other and communicate your actions and LOOK before you move. We’re moving in small increments and our pack was tight (to conserve energy) so I really appreciated the verbal communication between us all; I wonder how this may be different with the men’s categories. I learned to minimize my hand gestures with quick motion and honed my periphery vision (and looking underneath my arms to see back). No accidents, no one complained, so I guess we did well.  The mentors offered feedback during the race such as where we should position ourselves according to wind direction, which was essential for survival on this course. They told us what to look for (openings), when to attack and how teams can throw counter attacks (all this while we were riding 20+ mph in the wind and friggin’ rain, it was quite an awesome feeling). On our third lap we had to single file to the rt of the road so that one of the Men’s race could pass…that was kind of a pain because we almost had to stop just for them, so basically the third lap started with another roll out start (and lowered our avg…but hey, who looks at Strava avg, riiiight?).  :P

Lessons learned? You can use the side shoulder and move inside the white line! You still can’t cross the yellow, but you can cross in designated areas such as a sharp turn with officials and the last 200K mark (I think?). I finally learned to hammer it and do whatever you can to stay on someone’s wheel! I’m learning not to hesitate and to stop being so timid. I won’t stay in the game unless I’m willing to sprint immediately (and there’s no time to think, just do it!). I tried relieving my teammate who was up in the front during an uphill segment, but I couldn’t hold it for very long, but at least I pulled for a bit.

Towards the end I managed to creep up from the back of the pack maneuvering wide on a turn and hitting it hard coming out with a sprint on the final turn. I moved up the pack from the left side and ‘somewhat’ sprinted at the end. I’m not sure why I didn’t gun it, but maybe I was tired.

Tomorrow (Sat March 23) is Tour de Dung #2. I hope you’ll come out and support us racing ladies! It feels so good to be encouraged to do what you love, doesn’t it? :)

Here’s the site for more information about the race: https://www.usacycling.org/events/flyer.php?permit=2013-752

 

Come on, admit it! You see the similarities, don’t you? 
There are signs *everywhere*!!

Come on, admit it! You see the similarities, don’t you?

There are signs *everywhere*!!

My own GPS art combining my love for boats & cycling! (Hmm, maybe I’ll work on the sail a bit more on the next ride).

My own GPS art combining my love for boats & cycling! (Hmm, maybe I’ll work on the sail a bit more on the next ride).

Japanese version of Snow White’s evil step mother. Graffiti wall found near the Ala Moana Shopping Center, Oahu Hawaii

Japanese version of Snow White’s evil step mother. Graffiti wall found near the Ala Moana Shopping Center, Oahu Hawaii

Once again I’m pleased with REI’s customer service when I had to return this Light & Motion USB port bicycling light. It wasn’t giving a full charge so REI simply exchanged the bad light for a new one. Thanks~ ;-)

Once again I’m pleased with REI’s customer service when I had to return this Light & Motion USB port bicycling light. It wasn’t giving a full charge so REI simply exchanged the bad light for a new one. Thanks~ ;-)

Meet the Teams ride and Intro to Women’s Racing ended last Sunday. What a blast and inspiration to meet so many women who enjoy riding and having fun on the bike. This is a photo with Gina Kavesh, Team BikeSale.com, as she explains the formation of a double pace line. Team Group Health assists in the demonstration at the Leschi parking lot across the street from Starbucks. Great time & a beautiful counter clockwise ride on the south end of Lake Washington & Mercer Island.

Meet the Teams ride and Intro to Women’s Racing ended last Sunday. What a blast and inspiration to meet so many women who enjoy riding and having fun on the bike. This is a photo with Gina Kavesh, Team BikeSale.com, as she explains the formation of a double pace line. Team Group Health assists in the demonstration at the Leschi parking lot across the street from Starbucks. Great time & a beautiful counter clockwise ride on the south end of Lake Washington & Mercer Island.

Bicycling is experiencing a growth in the United States but probably not in the demographic which you’d expect! According to a recent article in The Economist the total numbers of annual bike trips, between 1977 and 2009, more than tripled and more cities want to be known as cycle-friendly communities (IE: Washington, DC, Boulder, CO, Portland, OR) but surprisingly all growth in cycling has come from men between the ages of 25 to 64.Doesn’t this seem surprising? Where are the ladies and children? And there’s even a smaller pool of women in racing. Have you ever wondered why there is no Tour de France for women? It may have something to do with lack of cultivation in the women’s field. I’ve been an active member of the Cascade Bike Club and enjoy the many Free Daily Rides (If you live in the Greater Seattle Area I would strongly recommend you try a ride, it’s a lot of fun and an easy way to make new friends and tour Seattle). Unfortunately there’s not a whole lot of options for women who seek more advance training for bike handling and speed training. I had to look else where. I was fortunate enough to find Gina Kavesh, a women’s cycling veteran who promotes women’s racing and held three day Intro to Racing rides this fall. I had the chance to attend two Sundays and learned how it feels to ride in a double pace line and cruise quickly as a pack. It felt exhilarating and a bit dangerous but after the second Sunday riding with these ladies I knew this was the direction for my growth as a cyclist.

Bicycling is experiencing a growth in the United States but probably not in the demographic which you’d expect! According to a recent article in The Economist the total numbers of annual bike trips, between 1977 and 2009, more than tripled and more cities want to be known as cycle-friendly communities (IE: Washington, DC, Boulder, CO, Portland, OR) but surprisingly all growth in cycling has come from men between the ages of 25 to 64.Doesn’t this seem surprising? Where are the ladies and children? And there’s even a smaller pool of women in racing. Have you ever wondered why there is no Tour de France for women? It may have something to do with lack of cultivation in the women’s field. I’ve been an active member of the Cascade Bike Club and enjoy the many Free Daily Rides (If you live in the Greater Seattle Area I would strongly recommend you try a ride, it’s a lot of fun and an easy way to make new friends and tour Seattle). Unfortunately there’s not a whole lot of options for women who seek more advance training for bike handling and speed training. I had to look else where. I was fortunate enough to find Gina Kavesh, a women’s cycling veteran who promotes women’s racing and held three day Intro to Racing rides this fall. I had the chance to attend two Sundays and learned how it feels to ride in a double pace line and cruise quickly as a pack. It felt exhilarating and a bit dangerous but after the second Sunday riding with these ladies I knew this was the direction for my growth as a cyclist.