Once a source of "Not all you want to know about Texas Adventure Racing," but now just some "leisure" adventure through the eyes of "The K-SPoT"

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Look Out MS-150, Here Comes the NP-140!

Nip and SlyAfter the Expedition camp weekend, I decided to take a couple of days or so off so that the swelling in my back could have a chance to calm down. Otherwise, I felt pretty good despite being out in the cold, wet world for 30+ hrs straight. I started back up with a swim during lunch on Tuesday and then weights and a 20mile ride around the fruit loop on Wednesday. I came back to HART training on Thursday. Lucky me, it would be on a day when Rick had concocted a 100% full-out brick course for us to perform. Fun! It was two loops on the run TT course, 3 loops on the same course on bike, and then one more run. After a warm up run to familiarize ourselves with the course, we were off. I decided to pace myself because Rick said he would be timing us and I didn't want to die at the end. As usual, Tommy was there, hounding me, calling me names, and throwing rocks at me. Okay, so he didn't do any of that, but I'm sure he was thinking about it. We get back from the first loop and Rick is disappointed at our times and reminded us that he was only timing the first run. Oh! In that case, I decided to turn it on since I could then just coast through the bike and the 2nd run. Tommy had gone for a run before training and I guess was experiencing some cramping, so I left him behind. I really wasn't going super fast, but I was feeling pretty good.

pre-rolloutI got back after my 2nd loop and Rick says I had a good time. I proceeded to walk over to my bike--I was no longer in a hurry as Tommy and Co were just coming in on the run. I took it pretty steady on the bike and didn't try to force anything and risk getting into a wreck, which I usually do on simple, non-technical courses (e.g., Double Lake). Anyway, the rest of the brick was pretty uneventful. I felt pretty fresh throughout and even throughout the rest of the workout. We then moved over to the hill west of our usual meeting spot, but they were growing new wildflowers, so Rick had to modify the course a bit. No matter, we still got a good hill workout in. To close the week off I had another weights session on Friday.

I was KOM on this oneAll this week, I had been hearing about Nick's brainchild of a ride from NW Houston over to Chappell Hill and back--and this was for his Birthday, nonetheless! I actually wanted to join him and Tommy but they were leaving during the day on Friday and I didn't want to take another half day off from work. So I eventually agreed to meet up with them in Chappell Hill and we would ride back together on Saturday. Mo had to work Saturday morning, so I was going solo. All the other rides were cancelled that day in town because of the foul weather--I was hoping it would clear up by the time we hit the road. I drove up to Chappell Hill, over to Nick's friends, the Youngbloods. He was good friends with their son and had a really good friendship with them as well. They had survived the harrowing ride up 290, so I decided it was okay to ride back with them. They actually said it wasn't too bad as the shoulders were wide enough to where they had a lesser chance of getting clipped. The Youngbloods' home was sweet--large, with a pool, and the bluebonnets had already carpeted every inch of their land. No wonder Nick and Jaunda loved visiting! They were just finishing up breakfast, so they offered some of Jaunda's wonderful cooking. Who was I to say no? After several minutes of chatting the morning away, we finally get to the riding portion of our day.

no masWe had decided that, to make it all worthwhile, we should ride a loop in town as well to get some hilly mileage in. Boy, was it hilly. It was good, though. I was still feeling good...perhaps I'm in a mini-peak? Anyway, we rode 40 miles around town, listening to Nick act like he was hurting. Along the way we got to see great views of prairies full of flowers in bloom. The sun was out and the roads were dry--it was a great ride! We circle back into the town square and run into Jaunda and Vera on the way back to the house. We chat for a short while then continue on--we still had to refuel and ride back into Houston. Nick and Tommy warn me to take my time on the dirt road leading to the house (dubbed Chappell-Roubaix) as Nick had a puncture the day before on a bridge along the way. Apparently the bridge has rows upon rows of exposed nail heads, most likely the culprit of his flat. So we take it slow and I take extra precaution crossing the bridge. We're scott free...until we hear Tommy announce, "flat!" Man. So they walked the rest of the way, but I figured I had a nice, functioning bike so why not use it?! We finally make it to the house and we all decide to take a dip in the pool before our final ride to Houston.

Nip and TuckNick and I go in first while Tommy is busy fixing his flat. But before we could get in, we had to maneuver our way around a dingo! Okay, not a real dingo, a dingo-mix dog. "A dingo ate your baby." Oh, that never gets old! Anyway, we make it past the dingo defense and jump into the pool. Nick tries to goad me into diving into the pool to chase a ring, but I explain to him my fear of losing my contact lenses in the process. Tommy joins us and Nick relays to him my plight. Tommy continues to tell me of these wonderful devices he has that protect his contacts. While I'm thinking, duh, yah, goggles, he proceeds to close his eyelids. Jackass. Anyway, he explains that he has gone underwater before and never has lost his contact lenses. Whatever--with my luck I would still lose them somehow. We swim for a bit longer and then jump out and get ready for the last leg of the Nikoli Payne 140 (NP-140)...yes, two days, 140 miles. Of course I would eventually only do 90 of the 140 since they had already did 50 the day before, but still I feel priviledged. We get dressed, load up and say our final goodbyes to the Youngbloods, our wonderful hosts.

picturesqueWhile they had a glorious tailwind the day before, of course, today I would join them with at best a slight cross/tail wind combo. We start off pretty nicely along 290, the hills getting more moderate to flat. Other than the occasional honks and jeers, the ride is uneventful...well, then there was that stretch near Hempstead where I was able to lead the bus at around 30mph. I was feeling really good! We make good time and roll into town at around 5pm, finishing up at Tommy's house. Jaunda and Miss Vera were supposed to meet us at the house, but they were nowhere to be seen. We give them a call, but no answer. I just wanted to get home and get out of these smelly clothes and take a shower! We finally get a hold of the women and they explain that they are just leaving Chappell Hill. Neither Nick or I wanted to wait any longer so Nick decided to take me home and that we could get together later for dinner at their place and I could pick up Touareg there. It was his birthday, so I figure he had diplomatic priviledges to do whatever he wanted. So he proceeded to plan a dinner at their place on the way home. Good times, good times. All in all, a successful inaugural NP-140. Kudos!

The next day was pretty lax until Weihan, Tommy and I went over to Cypress to test drive a boat or two. Other than that, it was a pretty lazy Sunday.

Yes, RBP Sprint report is up next...


Blogger Nickoli said...

Nick wasn't acting like he was hurting. Those hills really hurt!!

6:50 AM

Blogger K-SPoT said...

whatever. i hear you put the hurt on little ol Sly Fuchs...

7:28 AM


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