How to race an Xtracycle – 10 things I learned at the 18 Hours of Fruita

May 4, 2009
The team of Xtracycles

The team of Xtracycles

1.   Take turns wide

2.    Standing while climbing is not recommended; make sure you have a granny gear

3.    Fenders are not recommended when it’s raining – even if it is your townie. Mud gets caught and makes the tires not move

4.    The xtra weight very likely will cause your chain to break if you crank up too hard a hill

5.    The one guy you pass probably totally feels like a looser that he just got passed by a girl on a long bike

6.    When the bike you ride is decorated purple with a glow skull, flags, spoke cards and spray-painted, you feel like aimg_3029 total stud

7.    A start time of midnight makes for a long day, even when you only ride once. Got to cheer on the rest of the team!

8.    The blowup doll strapped on the back of the Xtra is necessary at least for one lap

9.    Beer tastes xtra good – especially when the New Belgium tent is only steps away from the finish line

10.  It’s the most fun on two wheels

Cranking up the final push
Cranking up the final push

My New Years Resolutions and What Might Just Break Them

January 12, 2009

I don’t usually do New Years resolutions, but there have been a few things I’ve been trying to change in my life the past few months, so figured making them official wouldn’t hurt. But like all resolutions, they are made to be broken, so maybe if I identify them first, I’ll have a fighting chance.

1. Riding to work everyday. I’ve been successful at this as of yet over the past year. A few time I’ve gotten dropped off, but I can’t remember the last time I drove myself to work.

How this might be broken: If I get a new job. There is no where else in Carbondale to work that I know of, so if I got a new job it would probably be in Aspen or Glenwood. But in that case, I would ride my bike to the bus stop and use public transportation.

2. Buying Locally. We don’t have much in the way of locally produced stuff up here in the mountains, but I plan on starting to buy local meat (as soon as there is room in the freezer from the pounds of frozen green chili). But as for things not made here, I’m trying to buy from local shops. Yes, it’s cheaper to buy my Tom’s of Maine from the grocery store or from Vitamin Cottage in Glenwood, but I’d rather shop at the little food co-op on Main Street, even if it does cost $2 more (yikes!). I was able to do 90% of my Christmas shopping (the little I didn’t make) locally, which was great.

How this might be broken: Money. Shopping in a small mountain town is not the cheapest place in the world – like a $6 tube of natural toothpaste instead of Crest. But keeping my dollars in the community is important, so I may buy less to keep it local.

3. Simplify. That’s a loaded word. Don’t even know where to start or how to accomplish that. But my small house is cluttered and my calendar has way to many things on it and something needs to change. I think I’ll start tonight by taking down the Christmas decorations.

How this might be broken: well, more like how will this actually happen! I like being involved and I like stuff, so technically, I’ve already failed. But every bag that goes to the consignment shop makes me feel good, like I’ve just rid my life of one more thing weighing me down. Its the freeing up the calendar that is going to take awhile.