Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Indoor Cyclocross Race Today!

or rather tonight at 9:10pm and lasts only 20 minutes. Tonight i plan to work on being calm before the race, while turning into an animal once the gun sounds.

It's a bit weird to plan my food for a race at bedtime. I assume my usual Chamomile Tea is not quite appropriate. And i'll probably skip my oodles of spices that i normally have every evening with my huge-ass bowls of pasta. I heard that they don't taste the same on their way back up. I will definitely fuel up with some Pruneaux D'Agen prunes I just got yesterday - and a ProBar always works for me for races late in the day.

The sun did its usual thing today. It popped up for about thirty minutes this morning before tucking away behind the clouds. I think we are still having 50ish F degree weather which is unusual for this time of year.

I have now been in Leuven long enough for the local store employees to recognize me. They all help me work on my Flemish while they get to work on their english - we conduct about half the conversations in English and the rest in Flemish.

Yes, even the local chocolate/candy store knows me by name. She has the best chocolate! And every time i visit, she sends me away with a free bag of caramel candies - vegan, of course! AND of course the second i get to my apartment building, i set up a tea date with one of the neighbors so i can pass off some of them so i don't eat them all and get so big i can't fit into my skinsuit. Although, my new jersey is super large so i guess a few extra candies can't hurt (Dear Coach Elmo: if you are reading this, I am just kidding.)

With all the moisture in the air, the cobbled roads (casein in flemish) gets super slippery. It's definitely good bike handling practice. It is easy to see why the masses of bike riders run their commuter bike tires at around 30psi - no joke! The tires are round enough to usually prevent flatting.

Yesterday I rode over to UPC to pay my internet bill. The way i get there is straight through the middle of Leuven, passing grote markt where the infamous church and city hall live. These buildings are super ornate, truly a sight to be seen before you die. What's even more special about these buildings is that they were pretty much the only two remaining buildings after all the bombing in WWI. All the buildings right next to them were bombed to hell - leveled!

Anyway, once i passed Leuven center, i continued on the long stretch of road leading straight to the train station. In january and july, the two months that Belgium stores are allowed blowout sales, this road is riddled with shoppers. It also increases the bike traffic. As i was riding in the middle of a single file row of cyclists, I was reminded that bikes in belgium are not quiet! They all clatter, chatter, squeak, and squeal. In comparison, i was stealth - aside from my bike's bright pinks and blues amidst the dark grey, black hues of the average commuter bike.

Gotta race now! Wish me luck!
Thanks for reading.


gewilli said...

So does this mean you will cut back to one habanero and one serrano pepper instead of two each with your meal?

BTW - i picked up 3 quarts (yes quarts) of the awesome hot sauce i ran out in Dec... i'll see if i can remember to get you the name - its the extra hot variety and its got wicked damn good flavor to go with the slow building fiery kick....

Race well...

and remember...


Think Ferdinand the Bull sitting on the bee fast (yes - my references/allusions now are children's books... go figure)

Anonymous said...

Dear Peanut, no I am not reading this.
-- Regards, Elmo

Anonymous said...

"Le Mans start" is the term you'r looking for. Name comes from the 24 hours of Le Mans auto race in Le Mans, France. Drivers used to have to line up on one side of the track and run to their cars on the other side. They stopped doing this when race cars started to have complicated harnesses rather than seatbelts that can be buckled on the fly.