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Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Jumping on (over?) the Cyclocross Bandwagon!

GET SOME! Tomorrow is the first of a three-part Cyclocross series at Fletcher Park at 6pm (more info here). The most grueling flat course anyone could hope to not die on, some say. So obvi, I'm gonna do it. Because who could pass up a chance to kick their own ass!

Really all it took was watching this video and remembering the shame from walking away from the Jackson Park short race a few weeks ago with my ego crumpled up and handed to me. I mean, why think too much about it? It's like going into a movie that you know NOTHING about, except for maybe the genre. You have no prior judgments or expectations, and in all likelihood, you leave the theater thinking, "Yeah, ok. That wasn't bad."  While I won't be doing a practice run prior to doing a practice race, I will shed some light on what sort of obstacles to expect. You know, like flaming hoops. Or bears. 

The whole point of cyclocross is that eventually you'll be running your bike across some impassable segment or obstacle, like a muddy passage or boards sticking out of the ground.  Whatever the flavor you must dismount and throw your bike over your shoulder. Easiest way to do this without whacking yourself in the face is to grab the down tube with your right hand to hoist the top tube up onto your shoulder.  Then take your left hand and maneuver the handlebars into your chest so the front wheel is secure.  If you have bar ends you can reach your right hand through the drop and grab onto the drop bar so your left hand can be free to help balance you as you run through the muck and the mire.

dismounting & remounting
Before you can shoulder, you need to get off the bike. Obviously. As I've mentioned in a previous post, it is so extremely important when riding on any terrain, road, MTB, cross, to prepare yourself for what's ahead. Especially in cross racing. You are a better judge of your athleticism, so take that into consideration when deciding when to dismount before a hurdle or runny slope. I find it really hard to kinetic instruction when it's written out, so I found a pretty straightforward short clinic video about how to properly place your feet and hips when dismounting. 

I'll have more to say about each of these pretty standard maneuvers after tomorrow when I have to do it for the first time ever, just repeating it over and over and over and over again.

APPARENTLY, it's an "old race trick" to race super hard 2-3 days before another race. So this will be my bike training this week for the Mountain Medley Triathlon this Saturday at Camp Green Cove/Mondamon! Hopefully I won't die. If you're thinking about doing this tri too, then come join us tomorrow at Fletcher Park!! If nothing else, Sierra Nevada is sponsoring it.

Welp! here goes nothin'.

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