The Hills Round Here

Finally got TB out on the MTB!

It’s so green, and alive… and it was quite warm as the sun settled over coastal fog.  Matt and Robot joined me.  Robot forgot he had to pick up plans for an inspection in the morning, he bailed early at Cactus Trail.  Matt forgot his MTB shoes and painfully pedaled with tenni’s, so we got him a RaceDay Bag and he’ll never forget his shoes again.

This time of year I like to ride from the office on Wednesday evenings.  We are two blocks from Whiting Ranch.  It’s easy to get out and do 60-90 minutes of climbing, either on Harding Truck Trail or Santiago Truck Trail.  That makes for a nice 2-21/2 hour ride.

Those types of climbs are important to be doing for my next targeted event: Whisky 50.

We hit Whiting, then crossed over into Cleveland National Forest.  The plan was to roll to Old Camp, but Matt’s feet were on fire due to shoe selection and we shot down The Luge.

Wow!  The Luge is in phenomenal shape.  New berms.  Stutter bumps filled in.  I’d say it’s like the luge of old, but it’s actually better.

Daylight was thinning out, and I didn’t mind cutting the ride short.  Still got in a couple of thousand feet of vertical, not a bad start.  10 ten more weeks to get my body ready.

The gear is mostly all there, ‘cept my shoes.

My shoes are in desperate condition.  3 seasons is 2 seasons too many for race shoes.  They are beaten, torn, and have lost quite a bit of support under the tender, aging balls of my feet.

Shoes are always a tough purchase which is probably why I procrastinate it so much.

Top choices are expensive: $300-400.  Most shops don’t carry a good selection, and even when they do you’re trying on a shoe on a floor vs a shoe attached to a cleat and locked into a pedal.  Then, the color selections can be weird.

Generally, I just go with black:  it’s in stock most of the time and I love the look of black shoes and black socks… just looks like they mean business, the mean kind of business.

As much as I think I’ve mellowed over the years, when I target a race I’m just a different guy that day… it’s kinda a weird, this Hulk-like transformation.  It can be embarrassing if I get too wound up.

Maybe I should buy white shoes this time?  NO WAY!

Once the starter’s gun fires all those days of climbing for hours straight up will come to my mind and I’ll remember exactly why I showed up to race.

The beautiful view from the top of The Luge