Monday, July 25, 2011

Race photo and Indian Peaks bike course

They've already got the race photos up.  Kind of a cool one of me leaning into a turn on the bike.  Makes my stomach turn over a little bit looking at the angle of the bike.  The run photos aren't so flattering and I'm buried under hat and sunglasses but I was happy to see a mid-foot foot strike. The other run photo shows sort of a heel strike but not an extreme one.  My hamstring wasn't sore after the race so that's a good sign I'm getting the new mid-foot strike thing down.

I pre-rode the bike course for the Indian Peaks Xterra up at Eldora in 2 weeks.  The course goes on the cross country ski trails which sounds nice and rolling but some of these trails are very steep.  My quads were so sore and I was so tired from the race I thought I'd have trouble keeping up with the group but it turned out that the race director that was leading the group had done the same race and was also tired.  Also they kept stopping the group so no one ever got too far behind.  Nonetheless I didn't get too many photos because I was riding at the back and didn't have a whole lot of time to whip out my camera before we were off again.  Pro Xterra triathlete Sara Tarkington was riding at the back making sure none of us stragglers got lost.  She has some good tips on her blog for busy workaday triathletes.  I particularly like the one about eating all day.  And making sure you get a treat every now and then.  She was very nice and made sure I didn't get lost or eaten by bears.

The course looks nice for the most part, lots of uppy then down-y and not too many super long climbs.  I think I can ride most of the uphill but it was hard to say because a lot of people ahead of me had to get off to walk which meant I had to walk as well.  But when I had a clear line I was mostly able to ride the stuff, just a few rocky places might force me to walk for a short bit.  Also depends on the crowd situation and whether I can pick a nice line up through a rocky bit. 

Nothing special about this part of the trail, it was just a place where we paused long enough for me to sneak a photo.

Looking down at the hill I just rode up.  The trails aren't all this smooth and some are steep and rocky but for the most part I think the bike will be fun.

There is one tricky bit of downhill single track that has some muddy, root-y drop offs and I may have to walk parts of it.  This is the bottom of the tricky part and I can ride it as long as I stay to the right of the ditch in the photo on the way down.  This photo is looking back uphill so in reality I'll actually be on the left of the ditch when I'm coming down.

It's a 2 loop course and I'm sure by the second loop I won't run into anybody or at least very few people.  Overall it's nice, mostly ride-able.  The original course that I did many years ago was one loop and went up high to some singletrack that was nicer than these trails but there was a long, steep, rocky hike-a-bike section up to the singletrack that just about knocked me out so I won't miss that part.  This course should be easier but still very challenging.

I didn't hang around to check out the run.  Sounds like it's a combo of rolling and steep hills.  The run many years ago was like that and I'm guessing this year's course is similar.  I'm o.k. with not knowing the run course exactly, it's the bike course that's important to know in advance.  There's one more pre-ride the day before the race but I'll probably skip it so I can have fresh legs on race morning.  Should be a fun race though after that sprint race on Saturday I'm not so sure how much I'm looking forward to being on the course for nearly twice as long.  Sometimes I wonder what I'm thinking when I sign up for these things.

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