Friday, December 02, 2011

mountain bike... what is that?

It snowed all day yesterday.  It will snow tonight and tomorrow morning.

The problem?  I have a duathalon tomorrow.  4 mile trail run and a 10 mile bike.  With snow.  And the roads/ground was nice and warm, which meant that the snow melted at first and turned to ice, and then got covered with more snow.

I have seriously thought about turning my tri bike into a ski bike.

Condition update from the race director:
*** DECEMBER 3RD RACE UPDATE!!! (updated 7pm Thursday December 1st) As always, we issue a course conditions report the Thursday before each Chilly Cheeks race. Yesterday, the roads and trails were dry. Tonight, there are a few inches of snow on the ground at Cherry Creek State Park. It's Chilly Cheeks Season!!!
The forecast for Friday calls for morning sunshine and afternoon clouds with temps getting just above freezing. So... I would anticipate some slick conditions on at least a portion of the bike course on race morning in the form of packed snow and patches of ice. Saturday's race forecast is for temps around 20 degrees at race time with the potential for light snow falling.

 As always, your bike choice is up to you, but a mountain bike might be a good option. If you arrive on Saturday and you are uncomfortable with the bike course conditions, you can switch to the run-only prior to the start of the race. Just let us know when you pick up your number.

 Here are some last minute instructions for everyone. Packet pick-up will open at 8:00am, with the race starting at 10:00am. Please bring photo ID with you to packet pick-up. Your race number and timing chip can only be picked up by you on race morning.

 Directions to the park are listed below this update. Please enter through the west gate off of Dayton. Parking will be available in the Hobie Hill lot, immediately adjacent to transition. Once this lot is full, we will cone off the entrance, and you will need to park in the marina parking lot, just 200 yards further down the road. Please do not park on the grass (park rangers will ticket you) or attempt to park in the Hobie Hill lot once we have closed it to parking. Any available spots you see are reserved for race volunteers and our ambulance. We are only permitted to park in these two lots. Please do not park elsewhere or it will jeopardize our ability to hold these events in the future.
There will be two starting waves on Saturday morning - all men at 10:00am, and all women just a few minutes later. During the first 1.75 miles of the run, you will need to stay to the left side of the road facing traffic. There will be an aid station serving water at 1.75 miles. From there, you will run on dirt trails for about 1.5 miles, then on bike path for the remainder of the 4 mile run.

 Run-only participants will conclude their event when they cross the 4-mile timing mat (all miles will be marked), and a volunteer will retrieve your timing chip. Duathlon participants will continue to transition, grab their bikes, and head out for a 10.8 mile ride. Helmets are mandatory on the bike, and must be buckled before you start. You will not be allowed to start without a helmet.

 The bike course will be open to light park traffic, so please stay to the right except to pass, and no crossing the centerline of the road (even if it is covered with snow, you know where it is). Also - this is a low-key fun winter event, but please - no drafting on the bike. You must leave at least 3 bike lengths between your front wheel and the rear wheel of the bike ahead of you.

 There will be volunteers at all intersections and turns on the bike course to direct you. The finish of the bike will be the same point as the start line for the run. After crossing the finish mat, slow down immediately and return your timing chip. Please do not blow past the chip retrievers as you will cross the path of runners who may still be on course. You may also miss out on a great raffle item that we award to random finishers at the finish line. We have helmets and glasses from Rudy Project, training DVD's from Carmichael, gift certificates from Boulder Running Company, Koobi Saddles, KompetitiveEdge, Excel Sports, and more. Lots'a great swag!!!
Once you are done, stop by the food tents for home made banana chocolate chip bread (my house smells so good right now!!! As well as hot cocoa, hot ramen noodle cups, and plenty of other drinks!

 I know, after weeks in the 50's and 60's this blast of winter is a real shocker, but this is what Chilly Cheeks is all about. Come out and have some fun with us!!! Online registration closes at 5pm on Friday, and race-day registration will be available. We'll see you on Saturday morning!!!
I have a mountain bike that I bought ~10 years ago.  Will and I used to ride them a lot.  Then I found masters swimming and really didn't want to work out 2x a day (swim in the morning, ride after work.  little did I know what my future would hold....)  Then I got a tri bike and have completely forgotten about the mountain bike.  The only time in recent memory that I rode it was a year ago, only because I needed to get to/from the car detail shop by my house and I didn't have the time to run to and from the place.

So, I busted the bike out last night.  Aired up the tires (hopefully they hold air - those tubes are original.  probably just cursed myself here).  Played with the shifters so I remember that they do not shift like my tri bike.  And wow, this sucker is heavy.  (Will actually told me not to whine about how heavy it is before I went in the garage to mess with it)

Dressing for this thing is a whole different animal.  My transition time will be ridiculous.  For the run, I figure I'll wear my fleecy run tights (with tri shorts underneath), a long sleeve shirt, my SONY jacket, a hat, and my new windproof baclava (that I just got for skiing).  And probably gloves.  For the bike, since I'm using my mountain bike, I won't mess with the cycling shoes.  I've debated about putting my SPD pedals on my mountain bike for more power, but I've decided that its probably safest if I'm able to quickly put my foot down if I start sliding.  I will bitch about not being able to pull up on my pedals, but its only 10 miles.  Still debating on wearing my warm winter cycling gloves or my ski gloves.  I will also probably have an insulated water bottle with warm water for the bike.  And maybe another jacket.  Although with the mountain bike, its not like I'll be generating that much speed/wind.

When I heard about this, I thought it would be interesting to race in the snow, but secretly hoped that it wouldn't come to it.  Guess I'll find out tomorrow if snow racing is fun or horrible.

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