A few weeks back, as I was watching Paris-Nice (one of the great spring classic bike races) on Versus, I noticed an ad for a new ride logging site called Strava. I've been pretty happy with dailymile, but it's really more of a general activity logging site as opposed to Strava, which advertised itself as specialized for cycling. They weren't kidding... It is definitely geared (ha ha) towards cyclists. However, it does give you the opportunity to log other activities like running or swimming. What makes it different is the ability to evaluate your ride based on community entered segments of your riding area. For instance, take my ride from today. I rode up and down Hawthorne Blvd. 3 times and then uploaded the data from my new Garmin Edge 500 (Had an Edge 305, but it was kinda broken). Since this is a fairly popular climb for cyclists in my area, someone in the Strava community had already created a segment of this climb. Strava analyzes the data from my ride, and then compares my performance to my previous rides over that segment or any others that may have been created along my route, as well as comparing it to any other users that have ridden it. As the 11th fastest rider to have climbed this segment, it seems I have room for improvement! If you earn a PR (Personal Record) or KOM (King Of the Mountain) status for the segment, it will let you know that as well. It costs $6/month or if you sign up for a year (I did), it's $59. For as much feedback as it gives you and its well designed layout, I feel it is worth it. I look forward to tracking my progress as I train this season.
Speaking of training this season, I've decided to lay off the booze until after I ride the Napa Gran Fondo at the end of May. I'll miss it, but it's really one of the easiest ways for me to drop some more lbs. so I won't have to drag them up Howell Mountain! I am allowing some wiggle room for special occasions like Easter, but even then, I am limiting myself to one glass of wine. Here's to hoping my family invests in some really big wine glasses!
Wow! It's been quite awhile since I've updated this thing. Tons of fun stuff going on with the Grillos, and finding time to write was pretty low on the priority list. Half Marathons, Bike Races, and Scotty's 1st birthday - to name a few! I do promise to not let another 5 months go by without a post! I have a lot in store for the rest of 2011, so there will be plenty to write about! More bike rides, including the Livestrong Challenge in July, and Levi's Gran Fondo in Oct. Also on tap: Marathon training! That's right, LA 2012! It may be a bit ambitious, but I am going to train for 3:10 and the BQ for 2013 that comes with it ;-)
Most recently, I made a trip to Portland, OR to go salmon fishing with my fellow sales reps. We did this same trip last year, with disastrous results. It happened to be the day of Portland's worst storm in 20 years. 4 ft waves (on a river!), torrential freezing rain, and a lousy fishing guide (giant lazy fat dude claiming to be a viking). He did have a rather creative way of holding his iPhone while arguing with his girlfriend (take a close look at his beanie). Not only did we suffer being soaked to the bone, but we got skunked as well. No fish for us.
This year was MUCH better. Temps were mild, the sun was out, and the fish were biting. As you can see above, I caught my limit. A 20 pounder! We all ended up with a fish, and had a great time on the river.