“In a world gone soft, someone has to be Hard!”
Has a certain ring to it doesn't it?
I’m watching the Tour Day Frantz As ‘Bobke’ calls it and really enjoying it. The coverage on VS, while better than what we used to get in the bad old days on ESPN, is, well, interesting, particularly those advertisers who have bought time.
While Enzyte is certainly a ‘PED” and I am sure there are many who believe that alcoholic beverages are performance enhancers, these may not be the ‘performances’ that would be associated with pro cycling.
You probably thought I was going to talk a little smack about a couple riders who have been tossed for use of illegal PED’s. Not much to say, but I have to think that the high profile toss and night in jail scenario for Ricardo Ricco has to be weighing heavily on the minds of any other riders who are either using or contemplating PED use. I like the idea of a clean race and I also like the race without a patrone. At this point it’s easy to imagine any of a number of riders winning. The race is now in the Alps and these three stages are likely to pare the field of contenders or possibly place one rider with a significant lead.
In my own little world of the spinning wheel, I‘ve been riding more with mixed results: I didn’t ride the populiare on STP weekend but did work on the event and everyone who rode finished and seemed to have a great time. I wasn’t feeling too good, I might have had a touch of that stomach flu, and then again I was just finishing up a course of antibiotics the ‘crack Codfish medical team’ had prescribed in yet another attempt to overcome my upper respiratory problems.
At any rate the next day I went with a small group to pre-ride the 200K scheduled for July 26th. It was a great day, a great group, and a great course! GIS says just short of 8,500 feet of climbing. I felt good about my ride for the first 100K but the second half, through the Tahuya hills (don't forget Anderson Hill road!) and then back to Southworth; things went downhill alarmingly. I finished outside the time limit (a first for me) and spent the last 8 miles from Hwy 16 to the ferry dock with ‘stomach distress’. (Oh how far we have fallen!)
Now I’m back on steroids, (yes the real PED’s!) and though these drugs do have amazing intended effects, there are also side effects. I am perhaps breathing a little better, but the side effects are kicking in. Some people feel wired, more energetic, and are able to get lots done. Me? I just have a sense of the jitters, hard to concentrate, and hard to sleep. I also tend to gain weight. Just the ‘me’ I want to be: jittery, sleep deprived, and gaining weight, alright!
Mrs. C is off to the east coast. She has a work detail in the Nation’s Capital, and then a week off with her family. In her absence I’ve used my time to ride and do a few messy home repairs. Yesterday I rode out to Motesano for garlic toast. This is heading west through the Chehalis Gap so sort of like swimming upstream, only upwind. There is a real payoff though when you turn and sail home for the 36 mile return trip. The county is doing road work so South Bank road is partly new asphalt and also partly new chip seal, yum.
This morning I got up early with every intent to get another early ride in before I started my second round of chores. But I flipped on the TV as I was kitting up and there was the 4 man break going over the Col Agnel, and lots of great commentary. So before I headed out on a ride I did a little vicarious Tour Day Frantz time on the sofa.
This time I went south and east to Centralia, for a bite at Papa Rays, one of the most popular mom n’ pop joints in town. Everyone knows everyone else and the old guy at the counter in spandex? Well I never really fit in, but I’m always warmly welcomed.
The ride home was killer; the head wind came up earlier and stronger than Saturday, which was fine. I figured it might just help counteract the unintended effects of my personal PED use.