Those who know me well understand that I thrive on variety. Some would call it ADD, some would call it scatter brained-ness, some others would label it a lack of focus. I prefer to think of myself as a Renaissance man for the 21st century. Having dipped my toe (perhaps "shoved face" would be more accurate) into the waters of race promotion, I have something else I'd like to try.
"Gran Fondo" is a Romanche dialect phrase meaning "huge pot of melted cheese, preferably heavily tending toward Raclette." The Romanche speakers are kind of the hillbillies of Switzerland. Anyhow, these events in Europe are all the rage. What it is, is you start off from one place, and you ride your bike a long way through scenic countryside and challenging terrain. It's sort of like a mix between a century and a Tour stage. Teams go all out for them - those huge wheels of raclette are highly sought after prizes.
The neato thing about Gran Fondos is that they're run on "real" road courses - 120 or so mile jaunts with nary an office park in sight. You can't do that with a regular race. Sure, you have to deal with traffic and stuff, but that all works itself out and is just part of the deal. In case anyones just waking up, we don't live in a perfect world. It's an adventure. With cheese. And waypoints where you have to get a chit to prove you're not Rosie Ruiz (look it up).
So where is a place with scenic countryside, challenging terrain and minimal traffic? I KNOW! Lost River, that's where. Even if they don't have any cheese out there, we could bring some.
Maybe this isn't the answer to all of our bike racing fantasies, but I bet it'd be fun as shit. At this point that goes down as a "just sayin" type of deal.
All this banter about off season workouts and whatever. Yeah, I've been working on my game. And last night my game broke. There was quite simply no freaking way I was making it through that deal. Still had a great workout, mind you. It's just that the second half would have put me in the stretcher today. But, since I finished my mission for today and I start designing a restaurant kitchen tomorrow (I dig design. Don't get to do it a ton, but I love it. Maybe I should do it for real?), that leaves this afternoon free to spend on my mountain bike. Dear old friend that it is.
Embrocation is a myth. Elite whatever it is Ozone, the other junk, the stuff they sell at CVS, it's all complete rave. A fabrication. I SLATHERED the stuff on the other day and started to feel a slight warming. Then it went away.