Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Fixing the Knee

So for the last year and a half, I've had nagging knee pain. I crashed hard at Nature Valley in 2009, and did this:

I landed straight on my knee, and while there wasn't much superficial damage, I knew my knee was hurt. I could still push hard on the pedals, but any lateral motion would cause sharp pain. I never had the injury diagnosed (no insurance, no money, and it seemed to be improving) -- I just kept racing on it. I was pretty sure I'd hurt myself, but had no idea what was wrong. This uncertainty shattered my confidence, and I spent the next month DNFing or getting pulled from every race I entered (it didn't help that I went straight from Nature Valley -- which I finished by the way -- to the 10-stage Tour of America's Dairy Land, where I DNF'd every stage). Eventually I healed up, and the sharp pains subsided, but in the months that followed, I started to develop an ache in my joint whenever I'd hammer hard. I first noticed this pain when I started working at Cycle U last October, after my brief off-season. The ache would come and go, especially when I would do harder, lower torque intervals. I managed this pain all year long, all through training, and all through the racing season. Somehow I'd convinced myself that this wasn't a big deal, that this little ache in my knee was just a minor inconvenience -- yes, a minor inconvenience that forced me to remove pressure from my knee for a few seconds every time I'd go really hard, instead of something that was slowing me down. I'm embarrassed to even share that; I think it's what you call denial.

Well this year, after a very satisfying and lengthy off-season, I returned to hard training, and found my knee ache still alive and well. This time however, instead of rationalizing my knee pain, and writing it off as a nuisance, I realized that it is actually reducing the quality of my training.

So I called around. My search led me to Mike Rogers, and Paragon Fitness Physical Therapy. Mike is a physical therapist, but he's also a cyclist. Apparently I damaged my PCL in my crash. That's the bad news. The other bad news is that I made all sorts of muscular adaptations to protect my damaged knee, and I've got some atrophied muscles to rebuild. The good news is that I don't need surgery, and that with the right physical therapy I can resolve the issue! I can't express what a relief that was to hear -- not just because I'll make a full recovery, but also because it validates my concern. Yes, my knee was damaged in that crash. Yes, I had a valid cause for concern, and wasn't just being paranoid. Also, yes, I'm an idiot for waiting a friggin' year and a half before I took this problem seriously.

Mike, at Paragon Fitness PT, thank you so much for getting me started in this process. I'm thrilled to see what I can do with two fully-functional legs instead of one.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Exergy News

First off, some of the boys have been uploading their bios to the team site. Learn more about Team Exergy and pick out your favorite racers!

Next, if you're interested, you can order your own Team Exergy jersey. We don't have pricing for the public available yet, but if you're interested, send us a message through our contact page, and be sure to change the category to "Order Clothing."

Lastly, we've added Prologo Saddles to our list of sponsors.
 I'm especially excited about their TT saddle, the Nago Evo TTR -- that thing looks real slick:

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Sunday is Funday!

So first off congratulations go to....

Random Integer Generator

Here are your random numbers:
Timestamp: 2010-11-28 16:45:55 UTC

John Sindell for winning the Rock Racing bottle. Included in your prize is a subpoena to appear before the grand jury and testify in the Novitzky case! Congrats! E-mail me with your address, and I'll get your bottle out the door pronto.

Also, thanks to my supreme detective skills, I believe I've solved a bit of a GliderBison mystery. You see, John's entry into this week's giveaway came in the form of a haiku that reads: Ball may be a jerk/But not number 38/He'll pick me to win. Back in June at Elite Nationals, I received some pretty heavy duty heckling in the criterium, as well as totally rendomly the next day, and, if I remember correctly, my heckler loved to shout "GO NUMBER 38!" at me as I floundered by. Well...looks like your position has been compromised Mr. Sindell! NUMBER 38 HUH?? LOOKS LIKE THE TABLES HAVE TURNED! No longer shall you sit safely in your duck blind of heckling, slinging "GO NUMBER 38" without fear of retaliation, from the vantage point of anonymity. You have angered the GliderBison army, and from now on, you shall face relentless heckling where ever you go, and what ever you do! My army of minions will find you while you sleep and shout "KEEP SNORING JOHN!" They will find you when you make coffee and holler "ARE YOU SURE YOU WANT 2% NOT HALF AND HALF JOHN?" They will find you while you're getting gas and bellow "DON'T FORGET YOUR GAS CAP JOHN!!!!" 

Mystery solved. Case closed. 

Saturday, November 27, 2010


Thanks to my buddy Stevie Zoom (who happens to be an InCycle regular) over at KEXP for introducing me to this one.

Saturday Morning Happy Sad

Things that make me happy: Aroma Coffee of Santa Fe's piƱon blend with hazelnut.

Christine sent me some of my favorite coffee from Santa Fe. I'm planning on spending the holidays in New Mexico, and this little taste of home gets me very excited indeed.

Things that make me sad: watching Boise State lose.

What is it about watching your favorite sports team lose? It's just a stupid game, so why do I care so much? I don't personally know any of the players, nor am I particularly invested in football. Nevertheless, last night's game was heart-wrenching. Boise State blew a huge lead, and their kicker missed two game-winning field goal attempts from under 30 yards (one with 2 seconds of regulation time, and one in overtime), thus breaking their 24 game winning streak, and crushing their hopes of playing for the national title. That kicker should never have been put in that situation -- like I said, the Broncos squandered a three-score lead -- but oh how my heart goes out to that guy. Kyle Brotzman is normally a solid kicker. He's got a good record, and almost never misses kicks from that distance. I'd bet that he has practices where he kicks 100 field goals from the 30 yard line and misses none. And last night he missed two in a row. That guy is going to be called Ray Finkle more times than he gets called Kyle Brotzman.

Things that make me happy: the snow melted!

Seattle just emerged from a severe winter blizzard. For those who aren't from around these parts, Seattle is woefully unprepared to combat winter storms. The entire city has a fleet of exactly two snow plows, and people downright lose their heads at the sight of snow. Even though we saw it coming days ahead of time, the city was still utterly paralyzed once the roads got iced over. There must have been thousands of fender benders citywide (check out the slippery roads and bad drivers here), and nobody I know went to work on Tuesday morning. Our house, thanks to it's turn-of-the-century-construction (the last century mind you, meaning no insulation in the walls and cracked, single-pane windows), has a maximum interior temperature of about 60 degrees, regardless of where the thermostat is set. Oh boy!

Things that make me sad: the snow melted.
You've got to admit, it was pretty fun while it lasted. I dusted off my cyclocross bike and went about business as usual. It took a little longer to get from point A to B, but the whole city felt like a giant cyclocross course.

Things that make me happy: I've ordered a new computer through the internet.
After relentlessly scouring the internet for the best deal on a new laptop, I finally pulled the trigger, and (hopefully) will soon be the owner of a brand new laptop. My current laptop, the wonderful vintage that it is, can be a touch frustrating to use. For instance, something got scrambled in its ability to recognize fonts, so roughly one-third of the internet appears in Wingdings, while the rest appears in Georgia. Go Black Friday!

Things that make me happy and sad: Four Loko is now banned.

Four Loko, Sparks, and Joose are all alcoholic energy drinks. These beverages were recently banned nationwide by the FDA. Four Loko is affectionately called "a blackout in a can," and after taking this ridiculously sweet, ridiculously caffeinated, and very alcoholic substance for a test drive, I now see why. A single can of Four Loko contains as much alcohol as an entire six-pack of beer, and the equivalent of several energy drinks. I mean, there is no way to responsibly consume a full can of this! We passed a total of three cans of this substance around a fifteen-person dinner party. Here I am polishing off the can of Sparks, and about to sample the Joose:
After a few minutes everyone in the room was hyper and loud. Or enraged like the hulk:
Thank god I never got ahold of this stuff when I was a teenager. I love how in this next picture I appear to be the only person at the table drinking alcoholic energy drinks, as well as the only person with my eyes fully open. How ironic.
The next thing you knew, the rather civil dinner party had descended into a full-blown robot-themed dance party. See what you've done Four Loko??? The madness!!!

Monday, November 22, 2010

This is What We Shall Wear!

Behold, the Exergy Kit for 2011:

Sunday, November 21, 2010

GliderBison GiveAway!

Allrighty then -- time for another give away. Same rules as last time:

  1. To enter, you must post a comment on this blog. Leave your name, and if possible, a short poem. 
  2. I will draw a lucky winner using a random number generator next sunday, the  28th of November. 
  3. Once I've selected a winner, send me an e-mail with your address, and your prize will be on your doorstep before you know it. Just ask Luke!
This time, I'm giving away a Rock Racing water bottle. This relic from cycling's past harkens back to a time when Rock Racing was the hottest ticket in town, a time when the number of team Escalades outnumbered racers, and when their motto was "Rock Racing: here to stay," (as opposed to their current motto "Rock Racing: not quite clinically dead yet"). Go Rock Racing!

This bottle was used once at a race, by a member of Rock Racing. I think it just had water in it, and I washed it, so it smells just fine. 

I admit, the logo is pretty cool.


Krogg go on nice caveman ride yesterday in cold cold but clear clear weather. Krogg ride with other caveman Jamie Stangeland and Ian Mensher. Jamie and Ian big bad caveman -- win many races! Jamie also possess ungodly good form at moment. This how ride go...

 Jamie ride at front at roughly one-gazillion watts:
Sam and Ian grit teeth and cling to Jamie's wheel:
Then we pass llamas: 
Then we go here:

Then we consumed these:
 And that made Krogg happy:
 And Ian happy, even though he flatted:
 And pumpkin pie await Krogg upon return. Thank god for pumpkin pie. 

Friday, November 19, 2010

Boise Checklist

Moving to Boise checklist.

Step 1: Sell time trial bike.
 Yes, sadly, it was time. Time to send my faithful Blue beauty off to her new lucky owner. I remember those giddy feelings that flooded my brain when I first got ahold of her. "You're really fast looking!" I thought. She was a great steed, and carried me to many a fine result over the last two seasons. She racked up a state TT title, a Ski-to-Sea Top Gun award, a fourth place at the Mt. Hood Cycling classic, and finished second behind Ian McKissick more times than I care to count (I'LL GET YOU IAN MCKISSICK!!!!!!!). Fare thee well, Blue Triad. You shall be missed.

Step 2: Defibrillate truck.

Yes, my truck has seen better days. Those of you who have haunted GliderBison since the dawn will remember me constantly galavanting across the northwest in my gorgeous gray gob of gears (see photo of my awesome truck at the height of her powers).

Well, after moving to Seattle (for good) in the winter of '09, I parked my truck in our driveway. Unable (or perhaps just unwilling) to afford proper vehicle registration and insurance, and keen on living a bike-only lifestyle, I just let her sit there. Oh, I'd start her up every so often and let her idle in the driveway for an hour, but I could tell she wasn't happy -- my truck craved the open road! She longed to cruise at her top speed of 60 mph across the endless Pallouse hills of Eastern Washington. However, my truck's last stretch of inactivity spanned nearly 6 months, and I was worried I might have neglected her to death this time. Those rust patches: bigger. My efforts to jump the battery: unsuccessful. My neighbor who knows about these things better than I pronounced the battery fully and completely dead. So, my wallet flushed with TT bike money, I bought her a new battery:

AND LO -- SHE STARTED UP WITH GUSTO, much to the utter astonishment of my housemates, and neighbors, many of whom have never seen her move an inch. 
 I filled up her tires, and BOOM! SHE'S READY TO HIT THE ROAD!!!

Step 3: Celebrate!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Sony Did It!?

So when I first saw this video, I was certain it was a joke:

Sony Releases New Stupid Piece Of Shit That Doesn't Fucking Work

But now, I'm not so sure. Sony appears to have mistaken this spoof news for REAL NEWS, and taken a page out of The Onion's playbook.

Sony just released this ghastly abomination into the world:

Does that look like fun to use or what? Sony is the technology equivalent of Colbert Report viewers who think Stephen Colbert is being serious.

p.s. don't tell Sony!

Damn You, Tube!

I am currently in the process of shopping for a new computer, or "computadora" if you speak Spanish. While cleaning out my hard-drive, I found this old gem.

Now, here for your viewing pleasure, is my newly remastered version of "Drawings I drew in the mornings before work."

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Cycle University Special Offer

Ok, shameless plug time:

Right now, Cycle University is offering spin classes through Living Social. No matter what kind of cyclist you are, be it racer, recreational rider, or even non-cyclist-but-interested-in-starting -- Cycle University's InCycle program will help you get better.

I taught InCycle all fall and winter last year, and I know it helped me improve dramatically. This isn't your normal spin class: you're riding your own bike, and you're using your wattage as a training tool. Every rider tests regularly throughout the course, and uses personalized zones for training.

I mean, look at the guys who have taught that class:

Adrian Hagyvary: professional cyclist.
Dan Harm: professional cyclist.
And yours truly.

I'm not even teaching the class regularly any more, but I've still been going and logging some hours at Cycle U because the workouts are great, and the atmosphere is great. When the weather is nasty in Seattle, there's no place I'd rather be training than at an InCycle class: tons of fans to keep things cool, a nice sound system to pump out the jams, a full-wall projector to watch movies or races on, and a wonderful, knowledgeable, and high-energy instructor to guide me through the workout.

If you're curious, check it out. This deal ends today.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Leaving Seattle

What is it about moving? 

Right now, I'm preparing to uproot. Granted, by some standards, my roots never got that deep in Seattle. It's not like I own a house here. It's not like my cousins live down the street. Still, Seattle has been home for the last two years, and from a plant's perspective uprooting is always traumatic, no matter how deep its roots. 

Boise bound. I'm Boise bound and that's not a bad thing. Not at all -- I'm thrilled to live there again. And I'm sure Boise will have me back; after all we left on good terms. After all, it was just under three years ago that I was doing the inverse. Boise to Seattle. 

Now Seattle to Boise. The emotions are similar, though not the same. 

I'm moving to Boise to be closer to my new team. It make sense in so many ways: better riding, cheaper living, more team mates. My new team. I'm on a new team! That feels strange to say. I've been with this team for five years. For five years this team has been nurturing me. Building me. "Developing" me. It's flattering. And it's sad to leave. I'll miss Hagens Berman. I will do my best to make you proud. Your time and money and energy and support were well placed. 

There are a few obstacles that I must overcome before I can leave. Gotta get my truck running again. Gotta sell enough stuff or do enough work to afford my travels. Gotta say goodbye to everyone, especially the people who have helped me this far -- my friends and teammates. 

And it's not like I'm moving to Egypt. I'll see all you Seattlites again. And we'll gulp gourmet coffee in classy coffee shops, and we'll dance dance dance til our feet hurt and our knees ache, and we'll ride the North End Loop, or the South End Loop of maybe even get out to Carnation or Monroe or Snoqualmie Falls.

It's not like I'm moving to Egypt. 

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Congratulations Luke!

And drumroll please.......

Random Integer Generator

Here are your random numbers:
Timestamp: 2010-11-14 17:11:43 UTC

Luke, seeing as how you were the fifth person to comment -- you just won yourself some delicious socks, a cap, and a musette bag! Congrats! E-mail me with your address, and I'll ship your prizes tomorrow.

Also, thanks for submitting your entry in Haiku form:

Socks on frozen feet
Warm toes Sammy-J grants me
When Krogg swings the axe

For that you'll be receiving an extra special treat.

Congratulations LUKE!!!

Thanks to everyone who commented, and don't worry, you'll get your chance to win another giveaway soon!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Killer Weekend Getaway!

Oh good golly, I just had a great weekend getaway. I don't need to go into every detail, but let's just say that there were some really good animals to draw, and we tried our darndest to craft a sauna out of a tarp. Enjoy:

 Time to load up over at Adrian's.
 Yes, you get to come too Kinga!
This Bison was giving me the stink-eye all night!

Snow bikes!
 Dinner #1: ground elk with kale, green chile cheese potatoes and yams, and a corn, pepper, celery, and olive salad.