Headquarters for the Slender Fungus Cycling Association

Headquarters for the Slender Fungus Cycling Association
Brewers of Hardy Rides.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Pulmones=Lungs=Air=Supply to muscles.

Since I was about 15 I have been dealing with Asthma. As I am getting older my condition seems to worsen. I have always been controlling it with exercise, Albuterol and some anti-histamine when it starts to kick in in the spring.
At this point I am at a loss. Since returning from Trans Iowa I have been short of breath and my usual medicines have slowly but surely stopped to really kick the Asthma away. If you haven't had Asthma try riding your bike while breathing through a thin straw.
So.... with much regret I will visit the "Doctor" and see what wonderful ideas he has in mind. I don't usually run to the doctor for anything. I fight colds, flus, and just about anything on my own. I am dumb, stubborn and bullheaded mediterranean style.
I have been laying low in the past days since I cannot ride past the 15 mph mark without getting winded. So, a visit to the doctor, some EPO enriched Steroids should shake the Portobello mushrooms out of my sensitive bronchios and lungs and I should be ready to demolish all racing fields young and old.
Anybody with knowledge or experience with acupuncture to help with Asthma please send me a comment. That is another route Iam considering.
Don't Smoke , ride your bikes.
Wheezy Ari

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Day Hiking and some Indian Cuisine

7th year anniversary Madison, Wi.

Rock Cut State Park, Rockford, IL.

Atop the Convention Center Madison, Wi.

The Yellow Jersey Bicycle Shop Madison, Wi.

The Capitol, Madison Wi.

We have been taking some small trips with a range of 2 hours by car around where we live. Feeling a bit stiffled , so we figured that that small excursions would cure that. We started the trips at the beginning of May. We have explored Freeport,IL. There we visited an Art Museum and found some beautiful gravel roads en route to town. We then headed out to Savannah, IL where we hiked the Palisades State Park and lunched at the scenic outlook over the Mississippi.
We also went to New Glarus, Wi to visit the Swiss Colony and the New Glarus Brewing Company, makers of the Uff-da and an awesomist Coffee Stout. Cheers Charlie!!
Last Sunday we focused our attention to Madison Wisconsin. There we celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary. What a great town! Bikes everywhere, great bike lanes, great food and even greater beer!
Today we went to Rock Cut State park to investigate. Walked for two hours, checked out trails and decided that at 40 minutes by car it is worth going there to ride. Good paved loop around park and many small trails. Will definetely take bikes there. For lunch we packed it at the India House on East Riverside dr. in Loves Park (suburb of Rockford) Great food and great Indian Beer.
Helmut should be back on Saturday from Puerto Vallarta, Mexico and another intense session of bicycle riding will comence. The small trips were also another great opportunity to discover some different riding areas. I have this feeling that this will be a great summer.
See you out there,

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Mutant Night Century #1

The final miles of our Night Century

10:00 a.m. Pepperoni Pizza, Stout and Salad

Helmut the Mutant

Naperville, IL.

The newly graded GWT

After the Trans-Iowa I have spent some time catching up with things and trying to plan out
what is going to happen in the next few months with my riding. Working from 10am-7pm and having family commitments has always been difficult for riding. Last night Helmut and I went out riding on our Salsa Chilis. We ended up riding all through the night and that was truly an experience. We came to my place and had a hearty pasta meal and downed some stouts. My belly felt really full but I knew it was packed with fuel.
We took the GWT,Great Western Trail and made it to St.Charles then we ran thru Geneva, warrenville, naperville,lisle, Downers Grove,Clarendon Hills and ended up in Hinsdales. WE got there around 1:30 a.m and had 52 miles in our legs. WE took a break and then headed home with a headwind and to confront the demons. It was easy riding through the wee hours and before we knew it, around 430, the skies started to turn colors. The EPO laced pasta held us until about 530am and then we had some homemade fruit bars, courtesy of lovely wifey. Washed it down with a gu and we were set to make the assault on the last strech of gravel, 17miles.
We arrived to Sycamore around 645am and picked up blueberry muffins for breakfast. We were really tired but happy to have made this epic ride.
The numbers
107 miles
7 hrs 21 minutes
max speed 31
av speed 14.5 mph

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

A true Gem

Lots of storm tonight with hail and lightning coming our way. Rollers? Legs feel tight after spending 9 hours on my feet at the shop.


Monday, May 11, 2009

Back to night riding

Wide Flaring Midge Bars

Mediterranean Blue Surly Steamroller

Navy King with matching Spacers.

Elita cranks, Gold chainring, Spd Pedals.

The week of recuperation and taking it easy is over. I had promised myself that today, monday, was going to be back at the saddle time. I commuted to work today and had a busy day at the shop. I finally built up the custom painted Steamroller. A fine man from Malta, IL. did the Powdercoating. I really dig the Mediterranean blue and I also like how the Orange matches up. I ordered a Navy blue King headset,(old logo), with matching spacers. The rear wheel is Phil wood with deep V. the front a campy record high flanger on Sun rim. Tires are Soma Wearever. I took the post and saddle off the fargo to ride it home. Cranks are truvativ elita with 44x18 gearing.
Stem is Thomson and bars are the elusive Midge from On One. Thank you Guitar Ted from helping me locate the last set on this side of the lagoon.
Tonight Helmut, Wife and I did a good 25 mile ride on the Great Western Trail. Of course it was cold and we were bundled up in winter clothes. It was great to be out at night and I felt in very good company. We turned around and rode with a nice tail wind. Next the Surly will get some used brake levers and a Campy Super Record long reach brake. I just might need to name this bike Zorba!!!

If you are interested in a custom painted Surly let us know at North Central Cylery. We can get any color you want. We then order a sticker kit and have cool hand Eric apply them. We then handwax the frame, chase all threads, Face and then built up a great riding bike

Thursday, May 7, 2009

The Trans Iowa Recap Version Five, May 2009

Pizza Dan arriving @ mile 40

Giggles arriving at 1st Checkpoint

Me and my trusty Gunnar Crosshairs.

During last years Trans Iowa I swore I would never have the crazy idea of riding like that. In my old days I had dedicated myself to become a mile junkie on the road bike. With increase in traffic and one too many close calls I started to retreat to the dirt tracks and off road scene. I became interested in endurance riding and I looked it up on the world wide web and Jeff Kerkove popped up.
A spark lit up in me. I then learned of the epic rides of a young man called Ira Ryan. An then Guitar Ted showed up. And after that I started to communicate with these people and my visits to cycling news became more and more spotty.
I dreamt of riding the famous Trans Iowa since I loved riding on Gravel. With much excitement I made it to the line up in Decorah and participated in the windiest ride of my life. Never made it to the first checkpoint on time put met some true friends and fell in love with the race. It would haunt me all year long and it would keep me busy in the winter. And then all of a sudden I would again be lined up at 4 am on Saturday to do it all over again. Last year after riding like a madman for 109 miles I failed the time limit by 20 minutes.
My silly cell phone had no reception and I started the long 60 mile trek back to Decorah with Travis and Matt Braun and Dennis Grelk. That was unforgettable.
This year my trusty riding partner Giggles drove in from Syracuse New York and then Pizza Dan met us and we packed the Mules and headed for Williamsburg.
We were all prepared better and felt a lot more confident with preparation and logistics. The weather was perfect and the gravel was bone dry for the most part. We met with Charlie Farrow, Ben Shockey, Guitar Ted, David and all the other friends. I was sooo excited and so pumped.
We started the race and the jitters started to go away and I felt relaxed on the bike. My Gunnar Crosshairs is God sent. It worked perfect even when I started to get tired and mistreat it. None of us had any punctures or mechanicals. Pizza rode another gunnar Crosshairs and Giggles was pimping a really cool Salsa Fargo.
We all made it to the first checkpoint at mile 40 and then we continued. The second leg was a leg breaker with incessant hills and long, long streches of B roads (no maintenance roads). I ended up riding solo to make the second checkpoint. My legs failed, and failed again. I cramped on the calves, hamstring, thigh, groin, back of arm, stomach. Everything but my brain was cramping.
I would lean over my trusty mule and scream in pain as the cramps curled and ran up and down my body.
I took loads of Endurolytes, water, gatorade, Hammer nutrition Perpetuem and would try to massage the beast out. My mind said to keep going and I explored regions of pain that I had never visited. My mp3 player kept me pumped and the dogs would chase and keep me on my toes.
My second checkpoint was at 7 pm and I had been riding hard since 4 am . At 6:40 p.m I had 6 miles to go and realized it was all over. I slowed down and felt great. I was all alone in the middle of nowhere and my body felt destroyed. I was so happy, I was so overwhelmed. At 46 I had pushed myself beyond any level I had ever before. I savoured the last 6 miles with an intense heat in my ears. I peeled more layers off and I drank all my fluids. My legs felt like rocks. My hands were swollen, My beard prickled me.
I wanted to talk to somebody but I don't think any words would have come out. With 3 miles to go I started to wish that Guitar Ted would give us another chance. I started to make mental notes. I arrived at checkpoint 2 and met up with Aris and Constantine Peters. They looked tired but happy. I met Michael from Michigan. And the rider that gave me a beef Jerky to rid my cramps.
Now I am back home and all this is still going through my head. Sometimes I can't sleep and want to ride all night. I am excited to be alive and have such good friends. I thank all of you for this opportunity. I especially thank my beautiful wife for letting me wonder on my bike at night in the winter.
Congratulations to the finishers and to all the riders that lined up. To the organizers Guitar Ted and David Pals we owe you one.
This weekend starts another season of training and frankly I can't wait. Helmut will be my new training partner and the cool thing is that he has a cell phone. That puts the wife at ease.
I have a lot more to say but will quit for now.
best to all,

Thanks to K.S from team Pegasus for the images taken

The Trans-Iowa 2009

I don't think I can write anything down yet. My mind is confused and I am still sorting out a lot of things. The race was super-difficult and I hope I can eventually put it in words. I am fine, and I am still hurting from this past weekend. It is 2:30 a.m. and I am awake and anxious. Trans-Iowa has altered my lifestyle. For now I just post the photos and tomorrow I am running away to Freeport, IL. to hang out with the wife. I don't feel the same.