oregon adventures

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

PIR Bike Race

Tuesday I went to the Portland Raceway to race the bike in the cat 4/5 race. I did this in April and stayed with the group the whole time. This time it was 2 days after doing a tri, but I wanted to try it. Started out with the group and quickly fell to the rear and had to really work to stay on. On the third lap they ran the bell which means the first 3 across the line will get points (hot spots). So halfway through lap 3 I was in the rear of the two lines and a guy started weaving from line to line right in front of me. Maybe he didn't know I was there? After he cut me off the third time, I was mad and about to yell at him when the group accelerated into the s-curves before the final straightaway. So he picked a line and I picked the other and stomped on it to catch up and got behind a little girl? The juniors race with the cat 4/5s. Unfortunately she flagged on one of the curves and then pushed to catch up and when I pushed the legs had nothing in them, so in a blink of an eye I was 20 yards back and lost the slipstream. So the effort required to go 26-28 in the slipstream now netted me 21-22, so I watched the group fly away. Oh well, now it's just a time trial for me, so I did the final 3 laps by myself and tried to keep it over 20 at all times and succeeded. I came across the finish line with an average speed of 22.2 just ahead of the massive cat 3/4 group and then I moved over to let them roar by. Afterwards a spectator said "you were out front before they reeled you in", I didn't have the heart to tell him I was a straggler from the other group. On the drive home, I saw a group of 10 bikers on the Marine Drive bike path watching someone change a flat. So I turned around and stopped and ran over with my floor pump- talk about a happy group, I made their day.

My Potrait

Who Should Paint You: Alfred Gockel

All American yet funky, you inspire an artist's imagination
And while not everyone will understand your portrait, you will!

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Oneonta Falls Hike

Went hiking with my friends Steve and Lynn on Memorial day. I think the whole city of Portland also went hiking in the Gorge on Memorial day. Passed full trailhead after full trailhead and finally found a parking space at the Oneonta trail. Hiked up and over towards Multnomah Falls and then back to Oneonta Falls and had someone take a picture. Then back home because Steve wanted to go try the novice PIR bike race. I went along to cheer with Lynn, watching made me want to be out there riding, but I thought a day off after a tri would be good. For the hike it was around 3.5 miles and 400 feet.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Onionman Triathlon

Drove over to Walla Walla on Saturday to do the Onionman Tri on Sunday. Saturday afternoon when I arrived, met up at packet pickup with my friend Kevin, Steve K (from the St Helens ride) with his family, and a really pretty girl from the base, Sandy and her sister Jennifer. Packets weren't ready so we decided to go to dinner first and come back. I asked a woman for recommendations and she said there was an Applebee's and a local place named Homestyle. We opted for the local one and got two booths, looked at the prices ($19 lowest entree) and promptly left for Applebee's. Had a really nice dinner and talked to Sandy the whole time. It was her and Steve K's first tri's, although Sandy has run 8 marathons each in a different western state. The next morning proved to be cold (50's), but dry. Helped Sandy with her setup and then we walked down to the water and we both started to get a little jittery, but then the horn went off and it was time to go. I've been doing low 30 minutes for 1500 in the pool, so I thought with a wet suit I should be able to equal that. I haven't had my wetsuit on since last year in a race, so I had forgotten how it makes my back bow and I have trouble putting the face in the water right away. But I fought through that and stayed with a big group around one lap and most of the second lap, but then they dramatically pulled away. I didn't feel I had changed speed, but I guess I ran out of steam and came out of the water at 39:58- I was so disappointed. It was my best Olympic distance swim ever, but only by 1 1/2 minutes and I was hoping for 35 minutes at the slowest. Onto the bike and I started out fast then hit a fierce headwind and slowed to 12-14 which is horrible, but still passed tons of people. About a 1/2 mile before the turnaround I saw Kevin coming the other way and then shortly saw Sandy. I thought I could catch them, but even zooming with the wind to my back, I could feel I didn't have it today. Finally rolled in with a 17 average, the worst average in a race in a couple of years. As I put my running shoes on Sandy left to start her run, so I yelled encouragement and hurried to try and catch her. She said she has a high 8 running pace, so I thought I might be able to catch her and took off full-tilt. I could see her for awhile and then she was out of sight and at mile 1 my watch said 8:12. Whoa, I could beat 3 hours if I run like this. At mile 2 it said 14 something- then before the turnaround at 3 miles I highfived Sandy, she wasn't that far ahead. At the turnaround my watch said 22 something- the fastest 3 miles ever I think, but slowing to go around the cone took something out of me and I hit 4 miles at a little over 30 minutes. The fastest 4 miles ever- and then my body said that's enough. First I had to pee really bad, so I found a bush and started back up a little slower and then a lot slower and then a slight hill that I walked the last part of and crossed the 5 mile at 44- a 14 minute mile? I think the mile markers were off. Started back up and had nothing left- somehow kept running to the end and came in at 3 hours 7 minutes, 12 minutes faster that last year and the run was 54:06 17 seconds off a personal best for 10K for an 8:43 pace and 12 minutes faster than last year. Of our group, I was last- Steve came in at 2:37, Sandy at 3:00 and Kevin at 3:04. Sandy finished with a 7:47 run pace and I was keeping up with her for 3 miles, maybe that's the trick- have a pretty girl to chase! Overall, I was very disappointed in this race- poor conditioning and a lack of open water training did me in. My time was actually good for me, but it could easily have been under 3. Oh well, more structured training needed. Afterwards, they had a lunch so Sandy waited in line with me for the food and then she took off. Then a long 4 1/2 hour drive back to Portland, but very pretty with green hills and brown hills and the Columbia river.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Music Website Commercial

Got called to do a commercial on Tuesday and I said yes even though it didn't start until 1030 PM. Showed up at a mini-mart in the tiny town of Kelsy by Sandy and waited till midnight for the shoot to start. The woman in charge of the last commercial I did was there and she remembered me of course. When we finally got going, I was a clerk and a teenager brings a pack of beer up and does a short dance and runs out. I get mad and run around the counter to chase him. That's it. Somehow that's part of a bunch of scenes for a new music website like Napster that is launching in a few weeks. No idea if I'll ever see the commercial. The really pretty make-up girl took my picture and was going to send it to me, but she had to be on set for another scene today at 5 AM so I don't know when I'll get the picture.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Oak's Park Run

Worked the weekend, but had today off. Planned to do a long bike ride but woke up to rain and clouds. Decided to run when it stopped. By early afternoon it was nice and sunny by Oak's park and I started out on the nice two lane bike path at a reasonable pace and at one mile my GPS beeped and said 8:22. I am doing an Olympic distance tri this weekend, so I needed to do 6 miles or a 10K if I could. Running to the end of that section of the path is exactly 3 miles, so I turned around and went back and got a second wind around 4 miles but slowed down around 5 1/2 miles. At six miles my watch said 51 something which is really good for me so I went across the street and did a small connector section of the trail that the GPS said was .25 miles so .05 over a 10 K at 54:23 which is an 8:42 pace. If I can do anywhere near that this weekend I'll be thrilled! Last year I did the Olympic tri runs at around a 10:16 pace- I think it was lackadaisical training and a slightly pulled hamstring. Afterwards, I walked off the run by going down to the river and out on a fishing jetty to get a picture of downtown. While stretching I realized it was yoga night. So off to Philadelphia's for a chicken cheese steak sandwich and then to yoga. I went to 2nd grade in Newtown Square right outside Philly and it was then that I discovered baseball so I've been a fanatic Phillie fan my whole life. The sandwich shop has the Philadelphia newspaper and shows sports from there sometimes.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Peet's Coffee Ride

Thursday after work I did a short city ride starting at Peet's coffee shop by the Llyod Center Mall. A woman (Joanna) from a tri club I get emails from was looking for someone to ride with, so I said I would. We met at Peet's coffee shop and when I went to get my shoes on and get on the bike I realized I'd forgotten my helmet. I've never ridden without my helmet, but decided to try it. I keep my gloves and sunglasses and Lance bracelet in my helmet, so I had to ride without all of that. Joanna turned out to be a really pretty young woman who works on maps and has a graduate degree in Geology. She said she mostly does duathlons because she doesn't like the swimming. Since she knew the area and route, I let her lead and when the road allowed, she was able to keep a good smooth pace. Being a city ride there were lots of lights, so the overall average was only 13.8 for 18.1 miles. But we went over the Broadway and St John's bridges and had a good view of downtown. At one point we rode down a quiet street through a tunnel of trees and there were 4 other bikers on the street besides us, so I went back in the Jeep afterwards and took a picture of that street. We got back to Peet's and she rode home. She said her and her husband don't use their car for weeks at a time by riding whenever possible. Since I parked in an hour slot right by a Thai restaurant, I figured I should get dinner there.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Springwater Dog Walk

Feeling really tired today, but it's 87 and blue sky so I had to do something. So I took my dog Spencer (picture) for a walk on the Springwater trail instead of training. A nice relaxing 2 1/2 mile walk at Spencer speed, which means stopping to sniff every few feet. Still tired, but I feel a lot better- it's that balance thing.
Mother's day I was going to go hiking, but my daughter wasn't going with her mom, so I stayed home with her and we planned a big dinner. Then her mom called and they went to dinner and then my friend Steve called and said "lets ride". So we did a 22.4 mile ride out in the country between Gresham and Sandy with some rollers at a 16.5 average. At the top of one roller was a perfect view of Mt Hood filling the sky with a fruit farm in the foreground- of course I didn't have my camera.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Canby Triathlon

Did the Canby Sprint Triathlon today and finally got under the 1:20 mark with a 1:19:31 time. The race took place at the Canby Swim center in Canby Oregon. This is the last pool swim tri of the year, so I wanted to do really good on the swim and try for 10 minutes or under. Started the 500 yard pool swim in wave 5, lane 5, 3rd person to go in the lane. After a few laps, I had passed everyone and was the leader in the lane for the rest of the time. When I got out of the pool my watch said I was under 10 minutes for the first time ever! Officially it was 9:45 for a new personal best swim. Ran out to transition (not a jog this time) and off on the bike. Just like last week I felt like I was going so slow and then a hill and several rollers slowed me down even more. Soared on the downhills and came in 2 minutes faster than last year at an 18.8 average. Then to the run where I started to feel tired, but kept trying to keep the pace up. Saw my friend Kevin on the run and knew it would be close, but I probably had him beat. Came across the finish line with an 8:27 run pace and a total time of 1 hour 19 minutes and 31 seconds a new personal best for a Sprint tri. Last year at this race I took third place in my age group and I beat last year's time by 4 minutes, so I thought I'd get a ribbon again this year, so I stayed for awards and didn't get one. The official results showed 7th place out of 12 for my age group. However, overall I came out 60th out of 199 which comes out to 30%, another personal best. A guy at work had recommended a good restaurant in Canby, so we stopped at the Canby Bar and Grill for lunch and it turned out to be really good. I had a walnut and peach chicken salad and a side of baked shrimp and avocado dip- mmm. Overall, very happy with this race. Two weeks from now is my first Olympic distance tri of the year- have to train harder now.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

yoga breakthrough

It's not an adventure, but it is a breakthrough for me. I've been doing yoga since January and haven't been able to do the Sarvangasana (shoulder stand) pose until this week. I started into the pose as always with the thought of stopping part way resting the back on my hands, but this time I decided to push on and all of the sudden I was up. The teacher came over and supported my legs to let me feel what the pose should feel like and then I came out of it. For me it's a milestone! Back on January 2nd I was inner tubing on Mt Hood and went over a ramp and the tube went one way and I went straight. I had time to think "oh, oh" and hit my shoulder on the snow. My first ever ambulance ride, first ever morphine, first ever vicadin, hopefully the last for all three. Separated the shoulder and now I have a bump that the doctor said is permanent- the ligament is gone. It took weeks before I could swim again, but I'm pretty much ok now, it still moves on it's own sometimes, but doesn't hurt and now I can do a shoulder stand! Yesterday I swam 1500 yards in the pool in about 31-33 minutes, which is the speed I was at in December before I hurt the shoulder- so I'm back to normal. Now to improve!!

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Hawthorn Farms Triathlon

Saturday I did the Hawthorn Farms Sprint triathlon in Hillsboro. I received an 8 second lesson in humility in this race. The swim started with me in the lane with a really pretty girl I had seen on Tuesday running at the Duniway track, I recognized her by a tattoo she wears on her shoulder. She said she must have been so fast that day all I saw was her back. Anyway, two laps into the swim my right goggle filled with water, which I could ignore except- I wear contacts! At the end of the pool I stopped and everything on the right was blurry so I blinked my contact back in then emptied the water out and started up again. Two laps later I had a slight leak, so I had to stop and empty the water again then finished no problem. Still came out of the water and out to the mat at 10:41 which was faster than last year's race. On the bike, I think doing a 61 mile ride the weekend before was a bad idea. I felt like I was riding in quicksand, no speed, but I finished the 13.3 miles a minute faster than last year and an average of 18.2 with one long hill. The run started slow, no energy, but I slowly got going and almost a mile out I saw my friend Kevin coming back in, he was in the wave before me. We high-fived as we passed and I started doing mental calculations- oh,oh. So at mile one my watch said 8:35- way too slow so I stepped it up and did the next mile in 7:58 and finished the whole 3.1 miles in an 8:22 pace which was over 3 minutes faster than last year. Here are the overall results, I'm number 4 of 8 in the 45-49 results and 8 seconds faster is number 3 Kevin. Last tri I crowed on the post how I always beat him, I improved by six minutes over last year, he improved by 23 minutes (he had a flat tire last year). Have to tip my hat he's really improved- now I have to push myself nonstop next weekend! I talked to the girl from my lane afterwards and she knocked a minute off her run pace doing the Tuesday track intervals. Also talked to an older woman who had done the Kona Ironman either 4 or 8 times and had done tris since 1981 and was going to the Nationals for Olympic distance in Kansas City this year. Somehow we also talked about bike touring and she had done Spain and Vietnam and across America- that's my dream- to bike across America. Then Kevin and I went to the Helvatia Tavern which was on the bike ride and guys at work had raved about. Turned out to be a hamburger place, but they had fish and chips so I got that. Realized I didn't have a picture, so we went back to the athletic club to take a picture.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Ride to Work

After spending $43 to fill my Jeep, I decided to ride the bike to work on Thursday. The forecast said 80 degrees and sunny, however, I have to be at work at 6 AM, so it was cold then. At mile three or so I got onto the I-84 bike path and my bike did a strange shimmy as I got on the path. After a few feet I noticed the back tire was flat. The first flat since last July and never riding to work before. I got mad, but that doesn't do anything, so I changed it and started up again. That's when I realized that the flat happened on a deserted path in dry daylight, with no cars and plenty of room to spread out- I'm being watched over! I was late for work, but just showed the grease stains on my hands and it was ok. The way home is on a back street that is labeled a bike route. Not very good race training because of the stop signs and lights and people commuting and walking their dogs on the paths, but anytime on the bike is good. 23.3 miles round-trip and a 14.6 avg.
Unrelated subject- gave a homeless guy a dollar at an exit this week for the first time. Usually I just drive by, but a coworker told me how he buys MikeyD's gift certificates and gives them out to the panhandlers. Sounded interesting.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

OHSU Patient Acting

Yesterday I was a guy who had cheated on his wife and now has a Urethal discharge at OHSU medical school (picture). This is one scenario that goes against my principals, but it's interesting to watch the students' reactions. One medical student (2nd year) acts as the doctor and talks to me and four students act as observers and one real doctor is the teacher and grader. Last year I did this case for the first time and the girls would get mad at me for cheating, I wanted to say "I never would" but that's not the character. I remember macho jerks in the military who would cheat on their wives, so I played it like I remember them. Anyway, one girl got real close to me to start the interview and when she found out the situation you could see she wanted to back up- she didn't, but she kept pulling her skirt down trying to make it lower. I shouldn't make light of it, because it tears apart couples all the time. The teacher gave them really good feedback and most of the kids did really good with asking difficult embarrassing questions. The teacher was the same one as last year when I did this case and he told me one of the students who got mad at me last year and was emotional had gone through this scenario for real with her husband and she thanked him for making her deal with it and be professional.
After five hours of that I needed a run- so down the hill towards downtown and stalled out in traffic. Then I saw the Duniway track (picture) and decided to stop there and run. There were tons of people, I saw the Portland Tri club and a group of young girls and another group who I think were Red Lizards, and then a few solo runners like me. I started out fast, but it was crowded and warm and I was tired. I tried to count 16 laps, but my GPS said I did an extra one, so by my GPS, I ran at an 8:20 pace. If I counted right and the GPS was wrong, I ran an 8:50 pace- I think the GPS was right. Then off to eat downtown, found Pizzacato which looked good and had a spinach salad and slice of avocado pizza.