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Your 2016 Season Summary

Old 11-23-16, 10:14 AM
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Your 2016 Season Summary

I'll start.

This was my fourth full season of racing. I've started to mature as a racer, showing some mental mettle, as well as skills improvements overall. I'm on a good team, although we do need to learn to ride as one. That said, the potential is there, and I'm in a good place around that. I like my teammates a lot, and that's a big part of being on a team.

I came out of the blocks in January in the midst of a poorly designed and executed diet, one I didn't need to do. I gave up strength and a couple of months of decent racing until I was able to finally rebuild my strength.

I started to hit my stride in June. I tightened up mentally, and although I'm not a TT specialist, I learned the value of riding one well. I had several good TT's, the best being the district time trial in Loyalton, a race at elevation, 5600 feet. I missed the podium, and second place, by less than 50 seconds. And that was against some high quality riders, two of them current and former national champs. I am very happy to have done as well as I did against those strong women.

In July and August I had some good rides in Cat 3/4 crits, which were populated mostly by much younger riders. I showed my gaining maturity by being patient, staying out of the wind and trouble (although I did almost get taken out in one race), and saving energy for the Right Time. I had a really good, watershed, sprint in one race, almost beating a younger and stronger woman at the line. I took second overall in my age group in that race.

One of the best moments in my entire racing career came in the district crit in September. It wasn't in how I finished, even though I did take second to very strong rider, a national champ, by just a couple of bike lengths in the sprint. No, the moment was when I went OTB and patiently paced myself back on to the pack. It took me a whole lap, but I knew I could do it. I did not panic and chase, I understood how the race was playing out and I let it come back to me. In addition, that was probably the hardest crit I've ever raced in. The field was 24 strong, all 50+ masters women, quality riders each and every one. There were attacks after attacks, the pace was high, and the skills were stellar. I came out of that race knowing that I belonged there with those women.

In summary, I made the podium a few times in district local races, I took a second in the district championship crit, backed into a second in the district championship road race, and got a hard fought and very satisfying fourth in the district championship time trial.

It was a good season.

Next season, I'm going to play to my strengths by racing on those banked ovals. Like Racer Ex, my goal is the UCI Worlds in October. I'll still race some road events, TT's and crits, but the concentration will be the track. I have a great partner for the team sprints and pursuits, and I am excited!
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Old 11-23-16, 11:40 AM
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Began racing in 2007 so next season will be my 10th anniversary.

According to Hallmark, the 10th traditional gift is Tin/Aluminum and the modern gift: Diamond Jewelry. I will suggest to my wife that I want a diamond since the season has already begun (starts 10/1/16). Maybe a diamond stud earring although that sounds painful but might work for a trackie but then I may have to shave my head.

I did less racing this year but did manage a couple of LAVRA TT races, Beat the Clock, Low Key Hill climbs and the state championships. And I stopped doing mass start racing in 2010.

State Road ITT Masters 65-69: 4 of 6.

State Track Masters 65-69: 500 meters 1 of 3 and Team Sprint 1 of 2 and Masters 45+ team pursuit 1 of 1.

I received my state jersey last week from Pactimo and my wife says to me, "let's open up the package and see how ugly it is." It is okay but not great. The colors look faded and the lettering is not pleasant to the eye. My suggestion is that they contact Heidi Klum and make the design of the jersey a Project Runway challenge. I will be the client and model and hang out with Heidi.

I joined a new team in SoCal and will see how that works. I have two races in so far for the 2017 season.

I hired a new track coach this year. My goal for 2017 is to podium in the 500 meters at the track world championships in Carson in October.

Last edited by Hermes; 11-23-16 at 11:54 AM.
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Old 11-23-16, 06:18 PM
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Nice racing y'all.

The SoCal TT season runs Sept to May, so I consider that I've just started my season. 2015-2016 was my first year of TT racing, I wandered into it from endurance sort-of racing in a series of fondo-like climbing events- my goal was a women's top ten for the series. I think I came in 9th or 10th, which I now realize is pretty amazing, given I'm a terrible climber and at that point weighed 20 pounds more than I do now. That's what I originally hired a coach to help me prep for and then based on my power profile & personality, Ex suggested I try a TT at some point. Once I finished my endurance race series, I went ahead and tried a TT in June of 2015. Did it on my road bike, came in second place but more importantly beat a friend by 9 seconds. That was pretty cool. I bought a TT bike and started racing in Sept 2015.

I wound up racing 16 TTs, I'm not really interested in mass start racing and quite honestly any injury that prevents me from performing surgery would cost me tens of thousands of dollars in lost income. Just not worth the risk, cycling itself is just irresponsible enough.

I had some good results, in large part because my competition is thin. But I learned tons- lots about pacing, riding steady power, riding with power and without, how to warm up and deal with the pre-race scene, how to prep for races, dealing with weird conditions like all wind and mud and rain, lots of equipment stuff, optimizing the bike, working on position, etc etc etc. Huge learning curve which I'm very much still on.

My highlights of the year were third place finishes in the SoCal and NoCal State TTs (40k) and second place in the SoCal TT series (a series of ten 20k TTs). Overall I had six wins, five second places, three third places and I was out of the money twice.

I also did some fun endurance events, joined a USAC club (although I don't ride with them that much), bought a mountain bike and rode some great places: Reno, Carmel, San Francisco, Colorado, South Carolina.

This season is not going quite as well but I've had a lot going on in my personal life. It's going well enough considering. I figure I'm learning mental fortitude at this point.

For 2016-2017, I'm planning on the same TT series and the SoCal State TT. I don't think life will allow much more. I might consider an endurance MTB race later in 2017 but I'm not sure I need to race every bike in my life. We'll see.
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Old 12-12-16, 05:50 PM
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Good stuff, Folks!

After trying to TT and hill climb my way to fun in 2015, I realized I wasn't really having that much of a good time. I did learn about structured training and stuff, but racing once or twice a month wasn't what the Doctor ordered. So, 2016 was going to be something different, and with Mrs. LAJ's blessing, I was allowed to go race again. Simply put, Mrs. LAJ was diagnosed with stage 3 cancer, and she realized life was too short for this Fatty McFatty to try and race up hills.

John was ecstatic, and the plan was put in place. He was far more confident than I was, but when I hit my first race, which did happen to be a TT, I popped off a 4th place, and the season began. There was a hill climb TT that I totally hosed, and I wasn't sure what to think. My next race was the Louisville Crit, which is a sort of technical thing, with a hill at the end. @rapwithtom won this the year before, and all I wanted was a decent showing. I was like a kid in the candy store, raced like an idiot, could ride where I wanted, and scored a top 10. That was my fist top ten in any mass start event, and I was thrilled to bits. Of course, when I came home and tried to explain my race, Mrs. LAJ was also happy, and thought it was cool that I'd had a string of top 10's. Then it was... "You were racing WITH people!" Yep, and I survived.

There was another TT, that I wish I'd done better at, then a road race that I could have done well at, but wasn't confident enough to race it my way. Then Federal Center... That's where @rapwithtom and I met, and it really does hold a special place in my heart, for many reasons. That's the first race I had ever done, and it was in the citizens class, back in 1990(?), or so. I was blown out the back the first half of the first lap in that race, and realized maybe I should just go ride my bike, instead of race. Either way, it will always be a goal event, and I blew it in 2016. Again, tried to race it like a sprinter, and there's no reason I should ever think that way. It was just a rough weekend.

The next weekend was a RR, and I chased every break that was attempted. Come to find out, the folks that I chased with and myself shattered the field, and the the 3rd break attempt stuck. I did too much work, but since there were three of us, I wanted a podium, and if I had to work to make it happen, so be it. I learned how to race to my strength, that day, and it served me well. They knew I was going to ride away at Morgul, but for some reason, they let me. Either way, it worked, and it was my dream come true.

All of a sudden, there was that season ending points/road cup thing going on. Everyone knew where I was, and if I moved towards the front, it was yelled out. Teams were riding for other contenders, and it got tough. Through it all, I learned how to ride in a crit again, if I ever knew in the first place. Either way, a third in a real crit, and a 5th in the State RR, and my upgrade was at the mandatory stage, and that was with 6-7 races left in the season. I figured the road cup was a goner, as every time my competitors got a win or a podium, they had an upgrade race drop off, so they could keep on chipping away.

I got to race with the 50+123 guys, and it was a new world to me, and I quit having fun. Went down, broke my bike, and was watching people move up on me in the road cup. Tough end, but my resolve is fresh now.

They didn't quite do it, I was able to hang on, and it was a season for the ages. I didn't get a state jersey, and I was sad about that, but instead of riding exceptionally well for one day, I rode pretty darn good for a whole season. I'll take it.

31 starts
19 Top 10's
8 Top 5's
5 Podiums
1 RR win
1 Superior Morgul Omnium win
1 50+4 Rocky Mountain Road Cup

Thanks for reading.

Last edited by LAJ; 12-12-16 at 05:55 PM.
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Old 12-12-16, 06:33 PM
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Nice season, [MENTION=140600]LAJ[/MENTION]. Congrats.
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Old 12-12-16, 08:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Heathpack
Nice season, [MENTION=140600]LAJ[/MENTION]. Congrats.
Thank you, [MENTION=351576]Heathpack[/MENTION], and back atcha. It was amazing.

Even better, Mrs. LAJ had her last infusion two Mondays ago, and the CT scan is next Monday. For a bad year, we're thinking it will end up OK. This wasn't something that she wants to define her, or us, which is why there was really not a lot said regarding this thing.

If I had Jami's heart, and her will, this next season would just be a walk in the park.
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Old 12-14-16, 12:23 PM
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I threw my results up over here.

It wasn't my worst season.
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Old 12-15-16, 06:38 PM
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I turned 55 this year and planned on winning a bunch of national championships. It didn't quite pan out that way. As it turns out others wanted to win national championships too. Who knew? :-)
2nd in the 35+ National TTT
2nd in 55+ National ITT by less than a second. That was not a happy moment.
1st in the State TT a couple of weeks later, but missed a national record by 2 seconds.
Should have bought the expensive skinsuit...

1st in the 50-59 National Hillclimb up Pikes Peak
1st State Hill climb 55+, 3rd in the P/1/2 group

All in all, 10 wins, 20 podiums (top 3).

Unofficial US Hour Record (55+) at Hellyer during a test in December. 45.578km. Current record is 45.019 set in LA. Hoping for a WR attempt in Colorado Springs next year. Need to beat 47.733.

Next year's goals.
Hour Record. ~49km
55+ national 40km record
Repeat at Pikes Peak
World Track Championships. Scratch, Points, Pursuit, Team Pursuit.
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Old 12-15-16, 07:11 PM
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[MENTION=80164]nslckevin[/MENTION], dude. That is bad a$$.

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Old 12-15-16, 08:17 PM
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Originally Posted by nslckevin
I turned 55 this year and planned on winning a bunch of national championships. It didn't quite pan out that way. As it turns out others wanted to win national championships too. Who knew? :-)
2nd in the 35+ National TTT
2nd in 55+ National ITT by less than a second. That was not a happy moment.
1st in the State TT a couple of weeks later, but missed a national record by 2 seconds.
Should have bought the expensive skinsuit...

1st in the 50-59 National Hillclimb up Pikes Peak
1st State Hill climb 55+, 3rd in the P/1/2 group

All in all, 10 wins, 20 podiums (top 3).

Unofficial US Hour Record (55+) at Hellyer during a test in December. 45.578km. Current record is 45.019 set in LA. Hoping for a WR attempt in Colorado Springs next year. Need to beat 47.733.

Next year's goals.
Hour Record. ~49km
55+ national 40km record
Repeat at Pikes Peak
World Track Championships. Scratch, Points, Pursuit, Team Pursuit.
@nslckevin: Another great year. Congrats.

KK's record is a no brainer at COS for you if you do it when they have the dome up. Carson isn't fast, and is a beast to ride for the hour. Know most of the attempts there. COS...much easier and faster. Without the dome you hope the weather is right. That's a huge crap shoot.

I'm winning the scratch and points so forget about that I'm going primeval on Larry. Or die trying. I want to prove that hope actually IS a strategy.

The IP...big ask. 2k is a long sprinters race and there are a few big motors in there.

TP we should talk. Had a piece of the 45+ 4K record (Carson) till CC and Co broke it at COS. The LA guys are wickedly fast, have a unique riding strategy, and are on home turf with the 3K world record. 4 vs 3k is a different animal.

I fully expect a 40k record from you. If you want to give a tandem 110 record a shot let me know. Got the Nats winning bike sitting in my garage.
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Old 12-15-16, 08:19 PM
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@nsickevin Welcome and congrats on a great season.

Mary Ellen and I will be at Carson a lot this year. Will be there next week for a couple of workouts. Worlds track is going to be a blast for the next two years.

Mary Ellen and I went to Aguascalientes Mexico where she set the 2k pursuit WR and we watched Molly set the elite world hour record.

Do not rule out Aguascalientes for the hour record. It is a very fast track but one has to adapt to the altitude i.e. faster than Colorado.
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Old 12-16-16, 07:03 AM
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You people are fast.
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Old 12-16-16, 07:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Racer Ex
I'm winning the scratch and points so forget about that I'm going primeval on Larry. Or die trying.
This will be a fun field.
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Old 12-19-16, 06:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Racer Ex
@nslckevin: Another great year. Congrats.

I'm winning the scratch and points so forget about that I'm going primeval on Larry. Or die trying. I want to prove that hope actually IS a strategy.
Hmm. Then I guess I'll go for the match sprints and keirin? :-)

Originally Posted by Racer Ex
The IP...big ask. 2k is a long sprinters race and there are a few big motors in there.
Yeah, I'm not that thrilled with the shorter distance pursuit. 2k is not built for me.

It's going to be fun.
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Old 12-21-16, 09:48 AM
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Originally Posted by VanceMac
This will be a fun field.
And I'll get to see some of it! Love it.
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Old 12-21-16, 09:51 AM
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[MENTION=140600]LAJ[/MENTION], nice season! Sometimes wins don't mean as much as the down and dirty experience. Those "ah-ha" moments. You seemed to have had a bunch of those. Nice racing!!
[MENTION=71001]Hermes[/MENTION], you are just badass!
[MENTION=95878]Racer Ex[/MENTION], well, you know what I think!
[MENTION=80164]nslckevin[/MENTION], wow. Just, wow. I'll be looking forward to meeting you at the track!
[MENTION=62353]VanceMac[/MENTION], looking forward to seeing you at the track!
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Old 12-21-16, 09:52 AM
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[MENTION=351576]Heathpack[/MENTION]. You are becoming the consummate racer. Solid, in all respects. My, am I proud of you!
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Old 12-22-16, 09:09 AM
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Originally Posted by sarals
@LAJ, nice season! Sometimes wins don't mean as much as the down and dirty experience. Those "ah-ha" moments. You seemed to have had a bunch of those. Nice racing!!
@Hermes, you are just badass!
@Racer Ex, well, you know what I think!
@nslckevin, wow. Just, wow. I'll be looking forward to meeting you at the track!
@VanceMac, looking forward to seeing you at the track!
Thank you, [MENTION=207647]sarals[/MENTION]. It was very eye opening. Instead of riding fast around a bunch of people that may have questionable skills, (myself included) and then falling down, I was able to hang out with the cool kids up front. That really was pretty nifty.

It looks like you've found your spot, and I wish you all the best in that discipline.
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Old 12-24-16, 09:33 AM
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Thank you, [MENTION=140600]LAJ[/MENTION]! Fun is the key, even if I don't compete well, I am enjoying the dickens out of it!

Happy Holidays!
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Old 12-25-16, 11:02 AM
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Originally Posted by sarals
Thank you, [MENTION=140600]LAJ[/MENTION]! Fun is the key, even if I don't compete well, I am enjoying the dickens out of it!

Happy Holidays!
Well said, and back atcha, [MENTION=207647]sarals[/MENTION]!
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Old 12-26-16, 12:03 PM
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Originally Posted by LAJ
Well said, and back atcha, [MENTION=207647]sarals[/MENTION]!
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Old 12-26-16, 05:04 PM
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My last two seasons resemble this quote:

That doesn’t mean experienced riders should strive to take 6 months off the bike, but it does mean that there’s benefit to continuing to ride consistently at some level – even if you’re performance has to decrease a notch for a season or two – compared to stopping completely.
From How to Boost Your Old Man or Woman Speed (How to Boost Your Old Man or Woman Speed - CTS)
Frequent business travel and bicycle racing don't mix well. Will try to do something about that in 2017. Adding house building into the picture won't help though.

2016 Statistics
  • Criteriums: 24 (6 DNFs)
  • Road Races: 2
  • Individual Time Trials: 16
  • Team Time Trials: 1
  • Track Races: 1 (omnium with 3 events)
It was really a struggle this season. Without a bike in Everett, WA, the few runs that I did really didn't help. Had a few bright spots from a performance aspect but I still have fun racing despite the struggles. I did find myself skipping a few races because of my fitness but without racing I would be in really bad shape. Bad shape means being unable to ride fast. Riding slow because of fitness (versus riding slow by choice) is not fun.
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Old 12-26-16, 11:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Cleave
My last two seasons resemble this quote:
From How to Boost Your Old Man or Woman Speed (How to Boost Your Old Man or Woman Speed - CTS)
Frequent business travel and bicycle racing don't mix well. Will try to do something about that in 2017. Adding house building into the picture won't help though.

2016 Statistics
  • Criteriums: 24 (6 DNFs)
  • Road Races: 2
  • Individual Time Trials: 16
  • Team Time Trials: 1
  • Track Races: 1 (omnium with 3 events)
It was really a struggle this season. Without a bike in Everett, WA, the few runs that I did really didn't help. Had a few bright spots from a performance aspect but I still have fun racing despite the struggles. I did find myself skipping a few races because of my fitness but without racing I would be in really bad shape. Bad shape means being unable to ride fast. Riding slow because of fitness (versus riding slow by choice) is not fun.
sigh, amen to that

FTP is probably dropping below 280 for the first time in five years due to reduced training. Relocating to a place where i can't train at night and finishing my thesis does that.

I just hopped off the trainer, 215W at 160 bpm on my TT bike for little more than 10 min, whereas i did close to 310W for 17 min in the summer. There's some serious gap between where i was and where i am, but at least that new diploma should look pretty.

As for the year:

-1 crit win
-1 road race 2nd place, in some of the most atrocious of conditions (one guy suffered a heat stroke after the race)
-1 ITT 2nd place (aforementioned 310W for 17 min). First time averaging over 28mph.
-1 ITT 4th place in a stage race (out of 60+ riders). Time would have been competitive for top 15 in the 1/2 field
-1 road race 5th place and 2nd in state.

All guided by the wisdom of [MENTION=95878]Racer Ex[/MENTION]

Toward the end of the season, it felt as if i could initiate breaks and stay away at will. Not sure how long that climb back would take as i'm down probably 40W.

I may fred it up and just pad FTP and do charity rides this year as i'm in a big hole for the season.
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Old 12-27-16, 04:01 PM
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Originally Posted by echappist
sigh, amen to that

FTP is probably dropping below 280 for the first time in five years due to reduced training. Relocating to a place where i can't train at night and finishing my thesis does that.

I may fred it up and just pad FTP and do charity rides this year as i'm in a big hole for the season.
Oh yee of little faith.

The reality is that CTL is nothing more than an algorithm telling you how much fatigue you (might) be carrying. A big CTL or a small CTL has nothing to do with fitness. It just means you're logging a lot of hours. Which could be good, or could be horrible.

I've ridden to the podium at road Nats TT numerous times on CTL's of 70 or below. Won a lot of races in that ballpark. 2nd twice in the 50 breakout at Tour of Gila, a 5 day stage race with a CTL in the 80's.

Once you build that motor it stays around. If you leave it out on a field you'll need to come up with a plan on how to knock the rust off and get it back in tune, but it doesn't go away. I've seen too many talented folks come back after long layoffs to doubt this. Start worrying when you hit 50 and things actually start breaking.
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