Sunday, October 17, 2010

embrocation time

This morning the thermometer outside read 38F at 8 am. By the time I joined Crystal over at the park for our "We're-too-cool/broke/tired/pick-one-for-Sherwood" cross practice it had risen to a balmy 43F. Perfect weather for embrocation. I had applied a dose of Northwest Kneewarmers Medium Formula about half an hour before I was due at the park, which was perfect timing for it to take effect.

We had a FUN session, riding for pretty much a solid hour after warming up. We set up a little practice course that basically ran around the entire park, taking advantage of mud puddles (turned to semi-hard peanut butter in the sun, but still almost slick enough), off-camber berms and drops, and tight turns through the trees that border the large, open green space. We timed each other and tried to make a go of four non-stop laps around the "course"; then rearranged our homemade barriers to make it a little different (and harder) and tried that too. Dismounting on an off-camber slope to run off-camber barriers on wet grass is pretty evil, but since we'll see stuff like that next weekend -- and worse if it rains! -- it's good to prepare. Best part of all was practicing with someone else, because we both agreed that it amps up the intention -- if not the outright intensity -- and makes us try harder stuff than we would if practicing all alone.

Crystal had to go home and study, so I stopped only briefly at our new local coffee shop before heading home, to the next-best part of cyclocross: The hot shower where I wash off the embrocation. The tingle remains for half an hour afterwards, soothing my tired legs; and after a solid ride or race it is a near-heavenly feeling unlike any other.

I am really looking forward to PIR next weekend.


Richard said...

I used to set up a barrier and an old log under an oak tree out at Lamar park. I'd go round the park as fast as I could and to my barrier work. People looked at me like I was crazy jumping on and off the bike for no reason.

Crystal said...

Cross practice.

I am super excited for PIR.

You may categorize yourself as 45+, but I know your real secret. You're really just a kid on a bicycle who loves to play in the mud!

bikelovejones said...

SHHH! Don't tell!
(My inner ten-year-old is my secret weapon.)