Thursday, August 02, 2007

Keeping the ball rolling

This summer is getting better each week that goes by. The move to Boise (from Nampa) has been a good thing for the most part. The location is great, the roommate thing seems to be working out pretty well, and I've been keeping busier than I expected with all sorts of random things. Last weekend's fun included a play at the Starlight Mountain Theatre in Crouch, ID. Every weekend from now until mid-September is booked with anything from camping with family to racing in Chicago (Criterium Nationals). After the Bogus Basin Hill Climb, aka the Bogus Basin World Championship Hill Climb (register here), the season is over and I get to do more non-cycling things. Recently I won a bid on eBay for a Garmin Legend GPS so that I can make sure that new places I want to go to get found. Three things that I have been thinking about doing soon are hiking to the Deadwood Hot Springs, mountain biking the Julie Creek trail, and ziplining the Tamarack Resort. As for other news, this weekend is both Jami and my dad's birthdays and I don't get to spend it with either of them since Jami is visiting family/friends and my dad broke his foot in a dirtbike wreck and is in a cast that keeps him from doing anything outdoors. DOH! Maybe the following weekend will make up for it with a camping trip with everyone (pops gets a new walking cast on the 6th).

As everyone knows, the heat has been really full on lately and hitting the water is the only way to survive. So, I've gone swimming, am going tubing down the Boise River this weekend and wouldn't mind hitting up Roaring Springs sometime (mostly just a teeny-bopper place, but oh well, it's still fun). The other side of this heat is that I've had to get somewhat adapted to riding in the heat. That's not an easy thing to do! Freezing a half filled bottle and then topping it off with water before heading out works well, but drinking super cold water messes up the body when working out, so I just dump it on my head and back, which works really well for keeping cooler. For drinking, I just bring along tap temp water.

On a totally different topic, I never gave an overview of the Boise Twilight Criterium, so here it is. The race was crazy! That's pretty much the only way to describe this years rendition! The team had a tent set up in corner one and we knew we'd be hearing our names there most laps :) For the most part all I ended up hearing was Remi's name, the local criterium specialist who ended up getting 5th. With 13 laps to go, jockying for position became much harder as the pace picked up and the insanity going into each corner was taken to another degree. With 6 laps to go, the Toyota-United team took over and I mean took full control of the race like nobodies business! They were swinging really wide, cutting tight and swinging wide into and out of each corner and doing 36+mph the whole time! and another ! So for the rest of us, it was a fight for a good wheel somewhere immediatly behind that train. That fight results in racers getting cut off by other racers over and over in very dangerous situations. Many at the front have no regard for the safety of the riders around them, only the desire to stay up themselves. To stay near the front, it's a fight to cut others off while not hitting the deck yourself. With two laps to go, the crowd around the start/finish line were going absolutely nuts and the noise was so amazing. With one lap to go, the noise was literally shaking me. Even with the focus of the zen master, I could not help but realize that the voices of over 20,000 people within 40 feet of us yelling to go faster was rattling the bike and my body while going 39mph. It was a very strange feeling with a mix of nerves being shaken from insanity through the corners, maxing out the physical limits of my body to go faster and at the same time being cheered on to the point that it was shaking me. In the end, I road in for 21st out of 103 top notch racers from around the country and our entire team showed themselves off of the front of the field at some point in the race, which is pretty impressive in my opinion. My mom, sister, brother-in-law and all sorts of friends from the Treasure Valley were all treated to the best show that a bunch of fast cyclists can possibly put on. Someone likened the pack going by to a couple semi-trailers driving by at 60mph as the wind to the sides of the pack is truly awesome! If you happen to be in town on the third weekend of July next year, make sure to visit downtown for some fun and don't forget to bring some beer to loosen up your vocal chords.

And if you want, leave a comment about how you've spent the summer relaxing around the BBQ or falling asleep at the helm of your raft in the backyard pool. (and I changed it so anyone can comment)
Until next time, it's been fun.

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