Monday, January 30, 2012

MTB Race Season Is Right Around The Corner!

For some reason I feel like I have said this before, but I don't feel like searching through my blog history...

"I am not sure I can properly convey the wild swings of the last seven days."

First of all I don't normally blog about work stuff.  There are two main reasons for this:

1) I work in R&D and the stuff I work on is leading the industry and proprietary.  If I leaked something to a competitor I would likely find myself in a legal bind (not to mention feeling like a total ass).

2) I suck bad enough at the political game.  Running my mouth on my blog about work would only draw attention to my political incompetence.

As you can see I have good reason not to post about work stuff.  It is not however any secret that we had a layoff last week, or that there is another one coming mid year.  Very stressful stuff.  Everyone knew it was coming.  I have laid awake at night trying to come up with backup plans.  Despite the fact that I feel I serve a valuable function, in a large company I know I am just a number.  We (The Mann Show) are not wealthy, in fact with the housing market collapse we are likely some of the least wealthy people I know (also not something I blog about, you won't see news articles about us building a custom home!), so having income to support us and to keep Allison's bike racing dreams alive is paramount.  

In any case the layoff happened and I still have a job, for now.  I am grateful.  That doesn't change the stress.  Wednesday I had to double apply my deodorant!

After the negative stress an opportunity came up to put some positive stress on my system on Thursday.

Yep, that is the XC World friggin Champion (adjusting her saddle height)!  We took a vacation day to show her and her band of speedy Canucks around Idyllwild.  Positive stress indeed!  It was amazing to ride with them for so many reasons.  Huge learning experience on top of the simple cool factor.

What a lineup!!!

I don't have many riding pictures because these people mean serious business when riding, but I did my best...

They even offered up some suffer face for the camera!

Three hours of riding with this group on stellar trails was worth a vacation day!!!!

So the awesomeness wasn't entirely just who was on the ride.  Wednesday night I burned the candle late after picking up Allison's new race whip and it was her first day on it!

Sworks 29er HT.  Good stuff!

So it was a good thing to ride with World Cup racers and not feel like a boat anchor.  I mean, Canadians bled on this ride (so did I due to a fatigue induced crash near the end of the ride) so I don't think it was a leisurely ride for anyone.  I really just am lost for words to describe the awesomeness.

Friday was a nice easy recovery spin.  I needed that.  Oh and I was working on bikes again late into the night because Saturday was another stress filled day...

Saturday I had to say good-bye to one of my favorite bikes of all time.

That is right, the Crux has left the building.  Don't fret though, as soon as a carbon disc version of this baby is available I will be adding whatever it costs to the balance of my credit card!  Hopefully the time I go without Crux-ness is short.  The versatility and grin factor were off the charts on that machine.

In the mean time...

I am back on my old Tarmac.  Great bike, just not as great as the Crux.  It was great to have power numbers again though.  Made for an interesting day riding with this one...

It was an amazing day in January to do a 4 hour roadie ride to the beach!

So the last seven days has had tremendous highs and lows.  Hopefully things even out some.  I could use some nice steady even stress so that I can prepare for the racing season.  I am looking forward to racing on the MTB in 2012!  :)

Keep it Rolling!

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