Sunday, July 25, 2010

Physical Therapy: A Cyclist's Best Friend

Wiki ankle diagram.

So, no more shin pain after yesterday's 200k brevet (post forthcoming)! Could be that it was half the elevation of the Mt. Rainier Sunrise Climb. But I think it is mainly because of my physical therapy session this week.

Here is how Dartre's and my PT, Betsy, describes what she did:

I did a basic subtalar manipulation (traction).

Sometimes that joint can get slightly off causing there to be decreased dorsiflexion range of motion which causes the anterior tibialis and or posterior tibialis muscles to overwork. It often makes the ankle feel stiff and we will try to get motion wherever we can in the rest of the foot/leg complex.

All I know is I'm happily pain free. She described it to me at the time as there are some techniques that you know whether they work immediately. This, a rapid tug on my ankle on the exhale of a deep breath, seemed to work right away though I was less sure due to the residual inflammation.

Yippee, is what I say!

Keep it tugged,


Friday, July 23, 2010

Dreaming of My First 1000k

Photo courtesy of Geoff Swarts and his Green Hornet Randoing blog.

I am itching to do a 1000k. And the wacky thing is I haven't even done a 600k yet! How crazy is that?

Well, I am working toward the Seattle International Randonneurs Sept 24 Crater Lake 1000k, and Geoff and Vincent Muoneke just pre-rode it. To see their pre-ride report, check out Geoff's website.

Thanks, guys for putting all the details together, and for whetting the appetite. I am both terrified and excited. Perfect!

I may end up having a work conflict, but otherwise, I plan to be there!!

Keep it deeply blue,


Thursday, July 22, 2010

Vicariously Visting Vancouver Island for 1200 Grand Kilometers

The caption for this photo from the BC Randonneurs Cycling Club VanIsle 1200 website reads: "Van Isle 1200, July 21, 2010. Dewain patiently waiting for me while I take photos of riders passing by the Saanich Inlet."

Dartre and I have a special passion for Vancouver Island from a very particular visit there once. It means a great deal to us.

On another visit I had a pretty interesting black bear encounter while fishing along a bear-frequented river. It is a wild and special place with storied Steelhead streams and lots of open space.

The BC Randonneurs Cycling Club's VanIsle 1200 website has ride reports, fresh photos from the 1200 kilometer grand randonnée that began yesterday and continues into Sunday. Do check them out.

And until I get to ride this one myself, I'll be visiting that special island vicariously through these fabulous rando ride reports and photos. If you're unfamiliar with the sheer size of Vancouver Island, grab a globe and you'll be astounded.

Go get 'em randos!!!

Keep it grand,


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Is This You, Seattle Rando, Flying Down Mt. Rainier?

Unknown Seattle Rando bedecked in new SIR lightweight jersey.
UPDATE: I'm told this is Elaine Jameson.

DartreDame and I took a run at Mt. Rainier last Saturday, but not as particpants in the Seattle International Randonneurs  #0243 Sunrise Climb Group Permanent. After tea and the newspapers in bed, we had breakfast. After breakfast and fiddling around, I packed our gear in the truck. After that I looked at the clock and realized...whoa, we had better hurry!

It was almost 11am, and we had to drive to Mt. Rainier, ride to the summit, descend, and return home for what we discovered was to be a fabulous wine-paired meal prepared by our now very good friends. Included in the dinner was a raucus Tour de France analysis about the battle between Contador and Schleck as it turned out that Steve (his wife Tanmeet and he prepared the fabulous meal!) was an avid Tour watcher. I could go on and on so wonderful were the food, wine and companionship of that evening, but we've got to get DartreDame, my wife Pramila, up Mt. Rainier right now.

Another pair of unidentified flying Seattle Randos.

So after the clock-checking, we had to "hustle our bustles" as my 8th grade English teacher Ms. Seneff used to say. I had wanted the day to be the antithesis of a time-bound brevet so Dartre and I could relax together, but my poor planning doomed us to hustling.

In fact, as we were about to leave the parking lot at the base of Rainier, Jansen, one of the readers of this blog, stopped to say a friendly hello after he recognized my new Pereira bicycle I've been bragging about here. Poor Jansen, I was so harried by my poor planning that he understandably assumed we were on a time-bound brevet. Not so. Jansen: I thought later I should have taken a photo of YOU for this post, but I spaced it. Next time, and thanks so much for reading this blog. I can't overstate how rewarding it is to be recognized simply by my bicycle and jersey by a reader of this blog. It is an honor to know folks read this. Thanks, Jansen!
Does anyone know this Seattle Rando? I know it isn't Dylan because I didn't whip out my camera in time for a shot of him.

And as for riding with us Seattle Randos, Jansen: don't wait. You've prepared enough. Even if you're not sure whether you're fully prepared, you'll learn more by trying than by waiting. Give it a go! I think that sometimes folks both inside and outside the Rando tent build up this randoing a little too much. It sure is tough at the longer distances, but a 200k to get started is well within most riders' grasp. Come join us!!

See the cue sheet? Yet another Seattle Rando. But who?

Sorry for the poor photo quality but I took these as we were riding up and getting the timing right to capture the descenders was tricky.

Here's Dartre on the early part of the ascent.

Getting closer.

Approaching Sunrise Point.

Made it to the first elevation sign!

Tired, but still willin'.

Climbing isn't easy.

The final approach.

Me, back in the lower elevations.

Mt. Rainier starting to dominate the skyline.

Hard to capture just how the mountain presses upon you near the summit. Really a full presence.

Dartre summits at 6400 feet. I think we started at 3500 feet.

I'm proud of Dartre. She toughed it out despite my poor planning. It wasn't relaxing at all like we wanted, but she reached down and did it, and did it in the hottest time of the day. The things she puts up with, me and my cycling obsession. The descent, however, was sweet. Another milestone for Dartre!

For an account of my solo summit as part of my Sunrise Climb Permanent, complete with elevation chart and map, go to this previous post.

Keep it well-planned,


Monday, July 19, 2010

I'm Trying Out to Log My Training

My Profile shot from

I wasn't able to do a screen shot, so this is all you've got. I just joined up on the website. It is a training log website where you can log your training sessions, comment, share photos, etc.. It's essentially a training version of Facebook.

Here is the link to my Profile page of dailymile. If you like it, you can roam around to the other pages. So far I have zero friends on dailymile so if you do join, how about being my friend?! I sound pathetic, huh?

I joined as a way to encourage myself to take the training more seriously. The drag now is that I just injured my right shin, and it needs a rest.

But check it out, and if you know of better online logs--I'll bet there are plenty of training logs out there--please let me know.

Meanwhile, I put a widget in the sidebar to the right. Feel free to give me an attaboy when I'm training well and a poke when I need...poked!

The photo is from Dartre's and my ride up to Mt. Rainier last Saturday. A full post forthcoming.

Keep it logged,


Friday, July 16, 2010

Not for the Faint of Heart, and Mostly Unrelated to Cycling

My gumline pre-surgery.

OK, this is not remotely cycling related. Even I, who sometimes go into extreme contortions to make a cycling connection, cannot. I went to my dentist and he told me my gum recession had progressed to such a degree that I needed gum grafting. Or so he figured. So he referred me to my periodontist, Er-Jia Mao, DDS, MS, PhD.

I really liked Doctor Mao, and if you're looking for a periodontist--and who isn't, right?--I'd go see him.

For me, hard brushing and perhaps genetics left me with two spots that needed grafts. So I had a choice. Doctor Mao could "harvest" skin for the graft from the room of my mouth which he indicated was extra painful, or I could use "other" skin. By "other", he meant that it was "harvested" from a cadaver.

HOLD THE PRESSES! I did find a cycling connection after all. Much as I am not particularly a Lance Armstrong fan, his LiveStrong website does indeed talk about gum disease, so there! But just for the record if you check out that site, my surgery wasn't cosmetic, it was so I don't lose my teeth.

Another pre-surgery shot.

My cadaver donor skin before it became my skin.

Doc Mao peeled my gums back to insert the cadaver skin...

and no, it didn't hurt.

Here's my new gumline a couple months later, and do note the fence, as Doctor Mao likes to call it. It is the ridge that will prevent further erosion. He really liked the looks of this, and therefore, so do I.

Another nice graft, though with the crown it can never quite be as good as it is on one's own God-given ivories.

Thanks, Doctor Mao!

Keep it smilin'!


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Tour de France Heads to the Mountains...and so do I!

Mt. Rainier on the road to Sunrise Lodge.

I rode SIR Permanent 0243 Sunrise Climb last weekend, and what fun it was on my new bike! I love the 650B tires, and the geometry fits me. Ahh!

Here's the Mt. Rainier National Park entrance.

At the Summit.

Fig Newtons as alternative fuel source.

I love Fig Newtons, and I'm told they're not bad as fuel. That's all I needed to hear since I left my bottle of Perpetuem sitting in the refrigerator! So guess how many Fig Newtons I can eat at one time?

Well, back when I was (I'm guessing here) ten years old or so we tested this. My cousin/brother Jeff (yes, he is both my cousin and brother and it is a story for another day) and I were hangin' out with no adult supervision. so we had a contest and I believe I won with a grand total of TEN FIG NEWTONS in my mouth. All I remember was laughing so hard and spewing figgy crumbs all over the kitchen floor. God, that is a fond memory.

Greenwater Skis now carries bike stuff in the Summer months.

Being the sensible adult I am today, however, I stopped at Greenwater Skis hunting for biker calories like sport gels, and they had them. But that didn't stop me from eating all the Fig Newtons. Yum! Greenwater Skis' owner has a good dog, Bell, so that says alot about the owner. Worth stopping if you need something on the way.

Frying Pan Creek.

My new Pereira on the bridge overlooking the Green River.

Green River from the bridge, Summer version.

You can compare the above Green River Bridge/Bike photos to those we took in February for comparison.

Keep it heading up,