Weight-loss Challenge Progress

Stage 1 - 4 kg down!

Friday, July 25, 2008

How much is too much?

I have just finished reading about how Kim Kirchen commemorated wearing the yellow jersey and it's amazing how quick Giant put together a new bike for him complete with yellow decals everywhere. But you may remember Alberto Contador's style at the Giro which I think really has set the bar for jersey winners.

Did you know that SRAM even provided him with pink brake hoods? I personally thought this was really cool and did my own little search to find out what I could get. Collectors have to set rules for themselves otherwise their garages would be full and their pockets empty. My rules are quite simple, it has to be the right pink and the right price (Hey, I'm a student and I'm not that insane!) So far, I've spray painted my bike hot pink (ok, Dad did) and have the shirts, sunnies, helmet, socks to match. I also have a bag full of pink gear ready to go on my next bike: bar tape, nipples (not what you're thinking!! They're for the spokes apparently), bottle cages, pedals but how much is too much?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Inspired by the Tour

Like everyone, watching the Tour de France fires me up and inspires me to do greater things. I have to make one small admission here though, I am usually asleep before the Tour starts! I am a sleeper and suffer without it so I really have trouble keeping my eyes open late at night. I do wake up for the crashes - not the most inspiring moments! I guess for me, the most memorable moments have been watching Jens Voigt smash all of the climbers on the Tourmalet in the Hautacam stage, and gives hope to the rest of us, "non-climbers." Watching the Tour has brought back memories of my experiences of seeing a Tour live - last year at the Tour Down Under in Adelaide.

Clare with last nights Stage winner, Cyril Dessel, who shared some climbing tips with us...

After gaining hill climbing expertise, Clare wanted some race-winning tactics, so she spoke to Bjarne Riis.

He may not have been that impressed by my photography skills but was keen to let us in on some secrets.

We thought we better double check what we had learnt with the two people who have probably seen more cycling than anyone else I know, Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwin.

The crowd favorite was definitely Robbie McEwen and we saw him suffer a bit on Old Willunga Hill
he then went on to win the final stage
Adelaide was heaps of fun and given that I can never get my timing right for Classics or Tours when overseas, I would love to go back and watch the Tour Down Under again.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Coastal California

I can't say I'm a huge fan of LA but I guess I could be biased. We stayed in Venice Beach and the local boardwalk was referred to as a freak show by our Lonely Planet. They weren't wrong. Sorry no pics.

The main aim of California was to enjoy the scenery, swim and drive up the coast to San Francisco. It was amazing even if the driving was stressful, thanks Clare.

Obviously the beaches were no where near as beautiful as here in Perth. We visited the beach ready to swim after exploring the beautiful Hearst Castle (below);
We were really keen to go swimming until we went in. I think I would have died had I gone in deeper than 10cm. It was freezing, painfully freezing.
The elephant seals were mesmorising. There were so many of them just laying on the beach like driftwood. After watching for a minute we noticed some of the boys fighting and the other lazy ones would flick sand on themselves to keep cool.

A bridge famous for being really tall

We hired bikes in Monterey, on what seemed to be another beautiful sunny day. The photo below is of the Lone tree near Carmel.
On the way back the weather quickly turned to s**t as you can see. The bike hire guys were pretty surprised to see me when I got back. I had been sitting on Clare's wheel the entire time it was raining (my excuse was she was on a road bike and I was on a hybrid). Anyway, I was spotted black the whole way down. No pics thank god.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Chicago highlights

I'll keep it brief again, but in 3 days we managed to:

Get central seats in the second row of the Broadway show, Wicked, for $25; eat a deep dish pizza; meet Darth Vadar and his friends at the Lego shop;
Explore Millenium Park (My fav The Bean);
Ride a tandem by the river;
Drink cocktails on the 95th floor of the Hancock Tower at sunset;

eat a fantastic Mexican meal;
and squeeze some shopping before heading to California.