Thursday, March 27, 2008

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Milan-San Remo Edition

The 99th edition of Milan-San Remo was contested on Saturday, with the amazing Fabian Cancellara taking the win for CSC in its last year as the team's sponsor. Fabian took the win with an attack at 2 kms to go, and held off Pozzato by 4 seconds. Fabian rode the 298 km race in 7:14:35. Yes, you read that right. Think about it for a works out to 41.14 km/hr... for 298 km. Or, way better than I can average in a full-out time-trial effort for 15kms. Pretty amazing, even when you don't consider that it's still early in the season for these guys, and--oh ya-- there are some mountains thrown into that 298km just for good measure.

Our Monday night spin-class group was a total sell-out. Every bike was taken, with 16 riders out for one of my toughest workouts yet. I had planned in some good climbs and lots of short sprints as well, with very little recovery time, so heart rates were high for most of the hour and a half. I think everyone survived, and maybe even had fun--I know I did! Even S.T. came out to see what it's like, and I think I even saw her smile at least once despite the hard work! A couple more new faces (at least to me) filled out the bikes, and of course many of the usuals were in attendance as well. It looks like I'll be leading at least one more Monday class...which is good, except that it means we still aren't riding outside :(

I tried on and placed my order for some team kit... can't wait to see the new jerseys and shorts! Hopefully everyone who's interested gets their orders in to the shop soon! We may not have the kit in time for early outdoor rides, but will have them for most of the season!

As usual, I went back for Tuesday night's class with J.B. leading. Another good group, and a solid climbing workout with no rest breaks...Ouch! I'm really hoping all this work pays off on the road!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Another week closer... riding outside...despite winter holding on stubbornly.

Although I'm going to miss spin classes (a bit), I definitely won't miss them as much as I miss real riding right now!

Last night I lead another class, and we had a decent group despite having a few no-shows due to illness. However, G.E. talked A.C. into coming out even though he was sick! I think he was lured by the possibility of green beers afterwards! We also had a couple of new faces in the back row, which is always good to see!

After class we went to R.R.'s for a pint or two... but since it was St. Patrick's day, the joint was packed! We managed to find a table, and had some nachos and Guiness (regular-old black, not green.) The only real notable even of the night was A.C. proclaiming that he would win every blue sign sprint this year. Yes, you read that right, and it's now here in writing: On March 17, 2008, A.C. claimed that he
"will win every blue sign sprint this year."
He did however add the reasonable caveat that he had to be present, so we can't be claiming wins on days he doesn't show up. I guess I'm OK with that! We will have to see how his goal progresses over the course of the season--if it holds true, this will be a pretty boring blog, because it will just say "Week 1: A.C. wins; Week 2: A.C. wins; Week 3: A.C. wins, etc., etc."

I went for a spin again tonight, with J.B. leading. Another good turnout! I think I even convinced S.T. to come to my class on Monday...after all, we did have a deal! She also mentioned that she might be riding on the road with us come the summer, which would be excellent! The more the merrier of course!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

A beautiful day for a ride!

I got out for an hour long ride on the 'cross bike this morning, and it was great! I'm feeling pretty strong for this time of year, mostly thanks to spin classes and roller riding! The roads are mostly clear, with only a bit of ice hanging around in several spots. I rode the 'cross bike with full fenders, and didn't get wet or muddy at all.. sweet! Of course the sun that was out when I started getting ready disappeared shortly before I hit the road, and reappeared when I was ten minutes from home. Ah well!

I took the 'blue' sign win (actual the Town of Perth sign, which is maroon/red rather than blue) although there was no competition! My crazy 48-12 sprint got me up to 45.5 km/hr...smoking! haha..

I realized that Paris to Ancaster is coming up in just over a month, and I'm not sure I'll be ready at this rate! We'll still have snow by then from the looks of it... However, I'm registered, plans are made, and time is booked off work, so I'm going even if I have to crawl across the line!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Bicycle Safety Tips from The Onion

Everyone's favourite news source The Onion brings us some bicycle safety tips. I agree with all of them, except for this one...

"Insist on a bicycle made of solid matter. Liquid and vapor bikes are a passing fancy; argon frames are particularly shoddy."

...because Argon actually makes some pretty sweet frames!

Hoping to get out on the road tomorrow, if it's not too windy... I don't mind -1°C, but -1°C with a 30 km/hr wind is another story. We will see what tomorrow brings...

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

We're back...

Well, after Blue Sign Weekly was flagged by the Google-bots as a SPAM blog, and shut down for a while (probably due to G.E. rigging the votes in the poll over there ----> [honestly, no one else would vote for him that many times!]) we're now back!

I lead my second spin class yesterday, and due to the March Break we had a much smaller class. It was still a good workout though! Since the time change was on the weekend, we even had daylight streaming into the shop for most of the ride, which is good and bad. Good because, well.. everyone loves natural light; bad because it makes me want to be riding outside rather than grinding away on a spin bike! Soon enough, I'm sure--once all of the snow melts and the resulting flood clears! I've got the fenders mounted on the 'cross bike for some spring riding action, and really hope to get out one night this week after work. At this point, it might have to be Thursday or Friday before that happens, although they're calling for rain on Friday. We will see!

I went back for a spin today with J.B. leading, and really got a good workout in. M.M. even came out for the first time, and it sounds like he enjoyed it. It's nice to go to J.B.'s class and sit in the back and sweat it out, rather than trying to yell out instructions at the front which requires some breath!

All for now...

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Spring is near...

Well, it looks like the hammer-heads are getting into spring riding mode. On Monday night, the who's who of local cycling (with the notable exception of I.B. who's in Florida spinning base miles as we speak) was present at the shop for spin class. Some, like S.W., C.W. and A.C., made their way out from their winter 'hibernation' (if that's what you call grinding out endless hours on the rollers at home alone) for their first and only appearance at spin class, while others came out for yet another week--but this time with a twist--for this was my first time leading a spin class! We 'raced' the Epping Course, although in a shorter format...we only had 1.5 hours!

With the time change coming up this weekend, I'm sure many will be looking to get out on the road very soon... I know my 2008 total of 93 outdoor kilometers is a bit depressing, but it's only a matter of time! Spin Classes will be coming to an end shortly, and pretty soon we'll all be dreaming of Blue Signs and post-ride beverages at R.R.'s. Can't wait!

With the season almost about to start.. who's your money on? I think we'll keep a tally of Blue Sign Wins (BSWs) here throughout the year, and at the end of the season the winner will get... something! Start the wagering in the poll on the right!

Welcome to Blue Sign Weekly

Welcome to Blue Sign Weekly...where I'll try to keep you up-to-date on the goings on at the front of the sprint for the Blue Sign that happens every Monday night. Of course, if I'm not at the front, then I guess we'll have to have G.E. write the post. Or maybe A.C. We'll see ;)

Feel free to leave comments... just keep the trash talking to a minimum, unless it's about G.E.! Bookmark, or add to your feed reader and check back for (hopefully weekly) updates!