Wednesday, December 31, 2008
I plan to be up there at 8 am. We will be clearing some new short sections of tie in trail just below the area where the haunted forest takes place (Tom Bennett trails) and possibly a few short sections of trail to tie in the old tree house trail. Also plan to take out the bridge planks at the bottom of the tree house trail and move them to the new location where this trail is being re-routed to.
Great way to start off the new year and as many of you have said, now is the time to be doing this work.
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
I’m excited and thankful about everything you guys are doing up at Krug. The timing appears to be near perfect as I have had a few recent discussions with city staff regarding the possibility of sponsoring some type of annual bike festival in an effort to promote the city’s park system as well as community wellness. In my opinion, Krug Park is the ideal location for the center of activities. I’m thinking in terms of XC racing, a starting/stopping point for road racing, trials comp/demo, beginner clinics, live music and food… or perhaps awards, music, food, videos, raffles, etc at the civic arena after the races whereby alcohol could be served/consumed, since it’s illegal in the parks.
Please understand that I don’t have the authority to make promises or commit resources on behalf of the City of St. Joseph. Staff has asked for my input and will likely rely on that input when making decisions as it pertains to the city’s involvement, if any. At this point, it appears that Parks and Recreation Director, Bill McKinney will have to grant permission as it pertains to many key aspects of bike related activities in the parks. Naturally, the city council may have some involvement depending on the nature and extent of city finances and other resources. I believe some of you may have worked with Mr. McKinney on various elements up to this point.
I have not spoken with him regarding the use of Krug Park for a bike related festival/event. I would like to make sure that all of us are on the same page and fully supportive of all activities that may be pursued. I think most of you know that my interest is in observed trials, thus I would like to pursue that aspect of the big picture, however I will not go it alone as I believe biking venues and events are made better by complimenting activities. I believe that perhaps the biggest part of growing any sport is reaching out to the spectators who, depending on what they see and hear may decide to get involved themselves… especially the kids… pull them away from the video games.
Simply put, not everyone wants to sit around watching a trials rider like me struggling to get over a rock and not everyone wants to stand beside a trail waiting for an XC rider to come by… but, when you put everything together and provide options, people start to feel the “Vibe” that all of us love. How many times have you heard people say, it wasn’t the race or the comp that made it cool, it was the before and after, it was the people, the whole scene, the “Vibe”. Thanks to many of you, St. Joe now has an awesome trail system that keeps getting better.
So, here’s my question for all of you… and responses are needed… Would you support this type of event and be willing to meet with and speak to the necessary people to get the wheels turning? My sincere apologies if this is something that you’re already working towards and I just haven’t heard about it. We must have a unified group approach with as many supporters as we can get… even if it’s just someone willing to say, “Yes, I would like to see this in St. Joseph.”
This post is not intended to be all inclusive by any means. Just wanted to get the discussion started in a format that everyone can view and provide input. Again, I make no promises on behalf of the city, nor has the city committed to anything at this point. Given the current economy, there’s no telling what kind of support there may be in the coming months.
I'd love to sit down and have a face to face discussion with everyone at some point if possible.
Sunday, December 28, 2008
but it doesn't matter how cold we are. it doesn't matter how much we want that sun sent warmth. and we can only position ourselves to a point - and then there is nothing more we can do but sit quietly in the twilight; waiting for the light to come. we can do nothing to speed the ascending salvation we need so badly. we can do nothing but fill ourselves with silent patience and the faith that our sun will come to save us from the cold.
And then the Sun Bursts over the Horizon. We feel Invigorated, as though we had Never been so close to freezing. We Forget the pain radiating through our Bodies as the cold night draws to a close and the Warmth of a New Day Bathes The Earth with Love and the Heat of Life.
A Whole New Perspective is in Play NOW. The problems of the cold night are an unpleasant memory, but seem Distant and Unreal NOW. The World is Filled with Colors. There is Music from the Birds and Squirrels, and things are so Different than they were just a Moment Ago. And the Priorities Change, and The Soul Changes, and the Person Changes - for Another Day; We Press Forward TOWARD ANOTHER NIGHT. Toward Another Night. toward another night. toward another night. toward another night
Saturday, December 27, 2008
is there a right answer for everyone?
do you know your answers?
are they same today as they were yesterday?
somehow we keep moving forward toward the answers we believe in today; and maybe tomorrow. forward toward a desired experience, a desired person, a desired object, or a desired feeling. sometimes our ships find port. sometimes they don't. and yet we sail on. on through the questions and toward the answers of a new year.
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Monday, December 22, 2008
I read this post from Cornbread out of Lincon.. Pretty interesting..
I know Dr. Allen Smith out at Performance Plus can test your VO2 Max if your interested...
Your VO2 Max is what is is though, I would rather focus on increasing our anaerobic threshold.... That is where we are going to make the most gains... I know there are tons of resources out there, so post what works best for MTB....
Here you go, its a (rather) short read....
Recently, I did a metabolic stress test (often referred to as a VO2max or a cardiopulmonary stress test) on a local elite athlete. The test results were outstanding for this individual. In fact, the results were some of the highest that I’ve seen on a test subject. The only other one higher was on a classmate of mine in grad school and he was a Division I cross country star. The results were also significantly higher than I’ve ever achieved.
The test got me thinking about the basic physiology of an aerobic athlete and what makes one faster or more powerful than another. Why are some individuals “natural” aerobic athletes while others struggle to hang on to the back of the pack?
WARNING! Geekdom at it’s finest approaching
VO2max is the ability to consume oxygen and utilize it for aerobic glycolysis. The muscles use oxygen in aerobic glycolysis to break down stored carbohydrates and eventually produce ATP (adenosine triphosphate). The high energy phosphate bond in ATP is what allows muscles to contract.
Man, I wish I had a syringe of ATP to inject into my legs during cross. Kinda like nitrous oxide for your legs. Unfortunately, that wouldn’t work and would probably kill you.
Anyways, back to the nerdy stuff, if the cardiovascular and pulmonary system cannot sustain the volume of oxygen required by aerobic glycolysis, the body will begin to call upon anaerobic glycolysis to help keep up with the muscle’s demand for ATP. Aerobic means with oxygen and anaerobic is without oxygen. Anaerobic glycolysis isn’t as efficient as its bro aerobic glycolysis and only provides a fraction of the ATP from the same amount of carbohydrate. So anaerobic glycolysis is kinda like the friend you call as a last resort to pick you up from downtown when you’ve had too much to drink. You really don’t want to go there, but you have no choice.
Anaerobic glycolysis results in lactic acid (actually lactate and hydrogen ions) as a nasty byproduct of producing those valuable ATP’s. That’s the familiar burn we’ve all felt on numerous occasions and especially during cross country races, crits and cross. So as the body is unable to provide sufficient volume of oxygen to the working muscles through aerobic means, the balance swings from aerobic to anaerobic glycolysis. As a result the muscles and lungs begin to suffer. Eventually if a person “red lines” for too long the muscles will shut down. The hydrogen ions from the lactic acid combine with bicarbonate ions and form carbonic acid which spontaneously dissociates into water and carbon dioxide. The increase in water isn’t such a bad thing, but the increase in carbon dioxide eventually has detrimental effects. A lot of folks don’t know this, but carbon dioxide is actually what triggers us to breath. Not a lack of oxygen.
Now there are several ways one athlete can be superior to another in various physiological systems which leads to a higher VO2max. Huge lungs help. Also a great diffusion capacity (ability to transfer oxygen and carbon dioxide to and from the lungs and the blood) is vital. Any kind of pulmonary disease (asthma, bronchitis, emphysema and smoking) can hinder the delivery of oxygen to the blood.
After the lungs come the heart and vascular system. Having a big strong and efficient pump (heart) is also critical, but if the plumbing is shitty the delivery of oxygen is hindered. Atherosclerosis (heart and vascular disease) will narrow those arteries and make them less compliant and impede delivery of oxygen rich blood. Pressure is also higher in small pipes which can lead to greater endothelial insult and subsequently more atherosclerosis. It’s a vicious cycle.
Now once at the starving muscles, AVO2difference (arterial venous difference) is the next critical physiological variable. The AVO2difference is simply the difference in the oxygen content of the arterial blood and venous blood. The arterial blood drops off oxygen to the working muscles and become venous blood (artery away from the heart and venous towards). The venous blood goes back to the heart and then the lungs to pick up more oxygen and start the cycle over again. Some individuals have higher AVO2differences than others. This was the great debate when I was in grad school. What is the deciding factor in a high VO2? There was the central theory (the big pump – heart) and the peripheral theory (AVO2difference). I personally think you gotta have both, but there really is no way to easily measure AVO2difference potential. The heart can be assessed rather easily with echocardiogram, CT and even catheterization.
Some folks just have better genes for dropping off oxygen. If you got Norwegian genes, consider yourself lucky. The highest ever recorded VO2max results were from Norwegian cross country skiers. Records for VO2max are 96 ml/kg/min for men (Bjorn Daehlie) and conflicting records for females, but most state 80’s. Greg Lemond was 92.5 ml/kg/min at his peak and I’ve read that Lance was near 94 ml/kg/min. Just to put it into perspective, dogs used in the Iditarod can be as high as 240 ml/kg/min. Just think how fast you would be if your Mom was a canine. Maybe Dr. Moreau was on to something.
Bottom line is the really great aerobic athletes are the ones who were given great genes from their parents. A lot of one’s ability is predetermined at birth. Training can dramatically improve initial performance, but once an athlete is trained it is very difficult to increase the VO2max.
Now once the VO2max is determined, the one thing that can be shaped to increase performance is anaerobic threshold. I’ll save that discussion for another day.
Sunday, December 14, 2008
The goal is to make one long loop, eliminate as much as possible the confusing intersections and short cuts and to make this trail as single speed friendly as possible while still maintaining much of what we had in the past.
Also, I am not a fan of building trails just to build trails and I don't think we really need to add much more in the way of length to Krug. I for one do not look forward to maintaining much more than what we currently have with the Corbies, GSC, the Brownie, Krug and Sun Bridge.
Maybe if more people would get involved with trail maintenance I could see building more but at this point with the limited number of people willing to pitch in I just don't see the point.
Krug will never be an "easy" place ride and in my opinion that is not a bad thing. What it will be is an extremely fun trail that will provide as good a work out as you could ask for around these parts.
We could use all the help we can get with this as it is a pretty major undertaking. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to post them here.
Saturday, December 13, 2008
Crook and I started out last night riding downtown, as I saw a bike come in the shop from Corby North that contained most of the topsoil that we so diligently try to preserve. We made our way out to the casino where I told the security guy we were NOT gonna leave $3k worth of bikes outside for some butthole to take. After some 10 minutes of waiting they let us put em inside in a storage room. We had a very mediocre buffet and commenced to ride(Dave) and walk/push(hippie) up the long Highland/Waterworks dirt hill into the bluffs at about 8:30. The trail was getting frozen and not really muddy at all except where there were those f'ing leaves! The views of the Kansas side were amazing with the bright-ass moon along the middle trail. There are now even more of those landscape timbers across the main trail. The trail now may last longer than we are alive, but it sure makes for a sore ass. We rode through Krug w/o any problems and saw all the lights strung throughout the park. We came through the first tunnel on the roadway and the cars were all backed up. We took the right side and started passing with pleasure until the glare ice reared it's ugly head in the corner. I thought for sure we were gonna pull one of Dave's patented 2 wheel drifts and plow a car or 2, but it never happened. We then made our way to Corby North and found it to be perfect. The tracks from the earlier soil-sampling ride were very evident. With Dave's light and my legs and lungs fading fast, we went back to the shop and loaded up.
I am sorry now that I didn't do more night rides this year. Commuting to work at 4:30 am is technically riding in the dark, I guess, but somehow just not the same. Point being is that if you arent Dave or the hippie you missed out! The night-riding hippie
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Friday, December 5, 2008
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Monday, November 24, 2008
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Friday, November 21, 2008
When I dream of the ultimate rental car, it goes something like that. Thanx to Dave Crook for this video. The el senior WOODrow hippie
Monday, November 17, 2008
Looks like we need to re-build several of the bridges on the bridge trail... Maybe set some posts so they stay put when the rains come. While I was up there I tried to hand clear some of the old trail across the big revine behind the log cabin. The long bridge we put in years ago suprisingly is still in very good shape. Went back up later in the day and started clearing several downed trees with the chainsaw.
There is a very steep hill basically at the beginning of that trail right after it crosses the creek. I decided to re-route the trail to the right just before crossing the creek. This will take us across the creek and up the side hill of the revine creating a longer gradual climb. Once on top we will tie back into the old trail.
If any of you are interested in helping out on the new section you can call me or post a comment here. If you just have some free time and want to go up there, by all means feel free. We could definately use help (especially with the bench cutting).
Overall, the trails still need alot of clean up... more chain saw work, some weed eating, bridge re-building, overhead thinning, blowing and of course more re-routing.
We obviously are not pressed for time but it definately would'nt hurt to get started soon as there is alot to get done.
One other thing for you amusement... Was back up there with the chainsaw late this afternoon and ended up getting the chain and bar stuck in a tree that was laid across the creek and the new section of trail. If you see a bar and chain hangin there you know you found the right spot!!
Sunday, November 16, 2008
I found myself within a forest dark,
For the straightforward pathway had been lost." -Dante Alighieri - The Inferno, Canto I.
So through the forest I stumbled, looking for something - but not finding it for the nature of its indentity was unclear to me.
I found myself at an apparent impass. A narrow path where turning around was not easy, or sensible, moving forward was arguous, to the right a wall, and to the left a cliff. How I found myself there was unimportant, but the risk associated with each decision was potentially mortal - though each risk at the hands of a different fate.
Finally as the footing began to give way, a decision was forced. Up. This time I would climb up and out of the predicament into which I had stumbled. Up and out of this dirty, cold place aside the cliff wall, where there was nothing but rodent excriment and crumbly rocks to fill my grasp.
Up on top. To feel the fresh wind. To ask for forgiveness for the actions that put me in the prior escaped situation. To feel the warm radiance of that forgiveness, and the redemption that comes with it. Up was the right way. This time, it was the right way.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Would you pass this one to your mountain biking dudes if they are interested.
Subject: Mike Steidley
On the off chance that any of you are interested. Mike and another rider are going to be featured on the Discovery Channel show “Time Warp” on the evening of Nov. 26th.
To think I got to ride with that dude! He was actually at my house… and he rode in my car and truck.
On a serious note, please pass the word to those who may be interested… if you know of anyone… other than me.
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Friends are important, you need them more than they need you
Work is necessary but riding is a priority
Working too many hours leads to a lack of riding which leads to laziness which leads to inefficient work habits... Ride damn it!!!
The smartest people are those who truly listen... Sometimes it's best to keep your mouth shut
Embrace getting older, what's the alternative?
Winning is'nt everything but losing sucks... You are not a loser
When you're done, you're not... Push harder
If you think you have an excuse, you don't
There is no better place to ride than Moab... Get out there!
13,000 feet is better than sea level, 14,000 feet is better than 13,000 feet... Get your ass up Long's Peak
Trail work... You ride it so help maintain it
You'll never be the best rider but you are a good rider, still... you can be a better rider
Push yourself past what you thought was your limit, if you don't you'll never know
Riding is a privelage... Get off your ass
Life has treated you well... You owe somebody... It's not all about you
Get over yourself... Everyone else has
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Sunday, November 2, 2008
Saturday, November 1, 2008
The weather was beautiful, and the time I spent outside was not enough, but i gulped it down like I would never see the outdoors again. I showed up late at GSC and the gang had already been through all the trails. Jason had it in for me, and took off like a mad man. He drove us hard for awhile, then finally slowed down about half way through a GSC lap. I was finally starting to warm up at that time, took longer than usual for some reason. It was a hard half lap. The second half was pretty more of a tempo pace. After that, everyone took off except Hoppe and me. We pulled out a lap at Brownie, then headed over to the Corbies.
The Corby trails were leafy, but for the most part were clear and fast. We hit it pretty hard and I was hurting bad and moving a lot of air around. Toward the end of the lap at Corby South, Hoppe decides he wants to jump the creek down by the pond. I got a picture of him landing. The whole thing looked pretty cool, but he landed really hard and won't be having any more kids, sorry buddy, watching hurt me too.
Well, we kept rolling for a minute. Then out of no where Hoppe is riding a front wheelie and is going over the bars. He saves it, sort of - and we take a breath and see what the hell happened. Turns out his tire came off the rim, but the tube didn't pop. Weirdest thing I have ever seen a tire do.
Hoppe proceeded to molest his tire for the next 10 minutes or so. I was kind of somewhere else today, so I wandered around and tried to take in the woods and water, just tanking up to hold me through the next week. I know I won't be able to get out during the week.
Thursday, October 30, 2008
I was hoping we could get a good size crew together on Saturday, November 8th (Next weekend)
The GSC could use some bench cutting, more de-nubbing and blowing. We could also stand to shore up the rocks in the small drop towards the end of the trail.
Also some bench cutting needs to be done on the Brownie.
Maybe we could even get Shawn to lay out the extension to the Brownie so we could get started on that later in November or early December.
Sunday, October 26, 2008
I had my first chance to do a cross race Sat at Smithville lake. The day was cool and very breezy with the wind whipping off the lake. I entered the single speed class and just got my butt kicked I only beat a guy on a Wal-Mart bike and he was'nt even in my class, it was sad. 30 min of anarobic sprints is not my strong suit. I hung out a little longer and races 35+ masters race. I placed 13th out of 16, I was still out of my class. There were other groups racing at the same time so I got to beat a few girls too, but some passed me too. Tim Crowley also raced we all had a great time. It wasn't till later that we discovered that I was racing aginst CAT 3-4 roadies. They smoked me on the opens but I tore it up on the dirt turns and technical sections. Pappy Long was there killing everyone of course. All in all I had fun and think I'd do it again if i got a chance even though it was sick and wrong.
Ran into Hoppe out there leaf blowing the GSC. Trail was very smooth and fast where he had been. It was certainly a lot of work, and he should be thanked for his efforts.
On the older trails, fall leaves provide a protective barrier and a regenerative layer. This regeneration will help protect the hills and gulleys from spring rains. Leaf cover will also allow us to ride when it is more muddy. Wet leaves don't stick to tires, wet dirt does.
On the other hand, it does slow down the riding for a month or two. And, leaf litter does increase the risk of bike damage from hidden sticks and rocks - so it is totally a give and take situation. Hell, last year I went through a couple deraillers because of trail clutter. Sucked.
Anyway, this is a point of contention in other areas of the country, and there are alternative viewpoints - but I'm pretty sure it is the case around here. Other thoughts? Trail Hippie, what do you think?
Saturday, October 25, 2008
Started the excursion in a clearing that overlooked a valley, and across to the surrounding hills. Colors are starting to pop, and a cool breeze hit me in the face. Shivers ran up and down me, and I felt really alive for a bit.
I descended a long steep hill, dropping about 150 feet in elevation into the tree canopy. Found a wonderful little stream. Every thing was so quiet, except for the sound of running water. It was a cool dewy moment of watching small frogs hop into the water, and imagining how good that water might taste. I was not brave (or stupid) enough to taste it though. What a simple decision, that could have such dire consequences. Life is like that I guess, funny little decisions all the time that we take for granted, but can be severly altering for what can seem like an eternity. I guess the example fits, cause any amount of time seems like eternity when you have giardia.
Up and out of creek bottom. Another vista, and a surprise - a pond in the valley below. It was absolutely beautiful. Started another descent into the valley.
The rest of the hike was up and down the loess hills that line the Missouri River. At the tops are reminant loess prairies, in the valleys are old growth forest. Both have their majesty. Eventually I started getting blisters on my heels. Funny thing, I have never had problems with these boots, could be a socks thing, or the fact that I probably descended and climbed a couple thousand feet over the course of 7 miles or so. Finally completed the loop and decided to jump out onto the road for a bit to get back to my car quicker. I was torn doing this, I wanted to go back the way I had come, and the pain in my heels was definitely a main focus of my experience, but it was also the kind of bitter sweet, redemptive pain that can last for awhile before it really starts causing problems. I was starting to feel my socks get wet though, and that is not a good sign, so I cut it short and jumped out on to the road for a mile or so.
The road was smooth, and it made me want to get out and do an epic dirt road ride. In the mile or so of road that I wandered, I didn't see a single car or indication that there was another person on earth. Solitude.
Friday, October 24, 2008
After hitting the ground, did you shake the impact out of your head and wait for a moment as things came back into focus? Did you have a new perspective on things, from a different vantage point? A view of the world that you don't usually take. One where you are close to the earth, where you can smell the dirt and the rot. You can see the busy activity of small insects. Did you notice how the fallen leaf litter blankets the earth, protects it, and regenerates what was lost in the spring and summer rains? Did you notice that the colors of the forest are different from down here? The yellows brighter, the browns more earthy, the dusty yellow filtered fall light warmer and more regenerative than it is from five feet higher where you normally see this view?
Monday, October 20, 2008
I headed up the short steep section that starts the reverse loop. Just as I was getting to the top I was stopped in my tracks by the sight of a pair of female butt cheeks about 30 feet or so down the trail in front of me!
Dumbfounded, all I could think to say was "hello". All of a sudden the girl stands up and I see another girl behind her with her pants down also! These girls were both squatted down face to face in the middle of the trail in an extremely close proximity to each other!
When they spotted me they just freaked out and started yelling "Oh my god, Oh my god" over and over. All I could muster was a lame "sorry" and turned around and headed back out of the trail and decided that last lap really was'nt all that necessary.
The common sense part of my brain told me that all these girls were doing was just peeing in tandem on the trail but seeing these two girls face to face so close together with their pants down told me that "common sense" thinking on my part just was'nt panning out.
I'm thinking it must have been some type of lesbian ritual that these two were enacting!
Guess I should have asked but I was a little freaked out myself.
What do you guys make of it?
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
any other takers? night riding is always more fun with a group...
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Saturday, October 11, 2008
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
As you move up the trail and the Liliger Cemetry rises to meet you, the sun moves behind the small plot. You see a hawk soar over head as you stop to pay a quick respect to those who have passed.
The dogs run ahead, but the animals aren't scared of them today - and you see a racoon staring into your soul from his perch in a tree. What does he see?
A vista opens up at the top of the hill on the overlook point. You can see for miles, to the bluffs on the other side of the river, far away. Things are quiet for a moment, the hawk still circles high above. He calls out and you hear him clearly.
Time to move off the trail and feel the wild earth beneath your boots.
Loose your footing and fall from a cliff. Not a long drop but enough to rattle you. Sit in the rocks for a moment and collect your bearings. Silence falls through the woods again till the dogs come back in to check things out.
Notice some beauty as you sit and think about what nearly happened as you hurtled toward the earth, totally out of control. Would you have seen this flower had you not fallen? Did you fall for a reason?
Keep moving out, back on the trail now. The sun is beginning to fall behind the rocks. Shadows cast long and the woods take on a pink hue. Every thing is soft and gentle. A groundhog peeks out its head and peers at me as I move past.
The sun sets over the far hills. The change in shifts begins. The hawk is gone now, but an owl swoops overhead and announces the shift change. His call is an affirmation that you have stayed too long - but you are not ready to leave.
It's getting dark now. The moon is out. You question your steps at times, but your boots know the trail, and the dogs are surefooted. Just follow their sounds, you will be back at the car soon, but you are not ready to leave even still.