Saturday, October 4, 2008

pleasure and pain

Today was the first official CX race of the season, at least the first that counts for points in the Utah CX series. The forecast called for wind, rain, and a drop in temperature from the balmy 80s we have been enjoying and sure enough saturday morning greeted us with wind, rain, and temps in the low 50s—perfect weather for the opening of CX season.
I've been frustrated with not having as much time to train now that school has started again and i'm teaching a full load, plus taking a few classes. I wasn't too strong at the warm up CX race at the Canyons a couple weekends ago or at the Harvest Moon Crit last weekend, but i reminded myself at the beginning of the race that CX is all about suffering and i psyched myself up to push as hard as i could and embrace the suffering.

Suffer i did.

The race started out with a three or four hundred meter climb up a paved road before it turns down into the gravel and single track. From the gun i pushed it hard and made it to the gravel with the lead group, but i already felt like i wanted to puke. i kept this pace up for a couple of laps, but then started to fade and watched in dismay as one rider after another passed me for the last thirty minutes. I don't have any top end endurance right now, and although i started in the top six, probably dropped down to somewhere in the top 15. Not very impressive. Time to carve out a little more time from the school schedule to train better.

The doodler, on the other hand, had a really strong race. He raced the B group and sprinted it out with JW for 2 and 3 place (one of those fast 18 y.o. kids had opened about a 30 second lead over the rest of the group and took 1st). He and JW were pulling a few Cyclesmith guys up the climb to the finish, but they pulled a little end of the race strategy and forced the cyclesmith guys to make a move, then came around them for the final sprint. JW ended up 2nd and the doodler 3rd.

On the other hand, i also enjoyed perfect pleasure this afternoon in the form of a Black from Tula Tomato pulled straight from the garden.

I'm saddened that summer is over and soon enough we'll have the first freeze, which will put an immediate end to fresh tomatoes. These tomatos have such rich, zesty flavor i take immense pleasure from eating them plain with just a dash of salt. Of course, they're great in cooked dishes as well and i would be amiss if i did not share my new favorite bread for the TCB (tomato/cucumber/basil sandwich). Recently i have been making these with Aspen Mills Jalapeño Cheddar bread. They are divine. I love the layered flavoring of the tomato, basil, and vinegar cucumbers all heated up just a tiny bit with the jalapeño bread. Highly recommeded.

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