Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Copy Paste Weekend

If I were given a chance to Copy-Paste, I would copy-paste the last weekend to a lot of upcoming weekends. There were runs, rides and long drives; hills and trails, rains and sun. There was sweat, slush, shivers and spasms. There was mom’s food, chats and Beer. There were friends, family, near ones and very near ones. We were extravagant and we were thrifty.

It was complete on most measures; on the measure of time - 'was 23rd April to 25th April.
Friday evening started with the actor screaming ‘sweet leaping Jesus’. This was followed by a quick trial and buying a new Schwinn Searcher Sport – a hybrid bike for Shreya from Track and Trail. Shreya immediately felt comfortable enough to ride it back home in peak traffic!
We answered Sabine’s call to run at Nandi and woke up at 4am to drive to Nandi hills. It was a pretty bunch – Sunil, Sabine, Sindhu, Shreya and Jaggi. We ran up, in short sprint bursts to the top and jogged our way down.
The evening rains in Bangalore are making the early mornings very pleasant indeed. Shreya and I cycled about 16k inside and around the GKVK campus. We snaked around the gravel roads, the fields, the new roads around the campus – was beautiful.
The perfect finish – a hash run at Hoskote, joined by Raghu, Shreya and the rain gods came down visiting. The Beers and the drive, set a perfect stage for the IPL finals.
Ctrl+C… Ctrl+V??

Monday, April 19, 2010

Bangalore Bicycing Championship 2010

This is my second race with BBCh – the Bangalore Bicycling Championship and first this year. The call from Ventak informing me of the road race came bang in the middle of shit loads of work and grabbed it with both hands. I needed this dose of adrenaline.

Come the race day, Venkat picked me up at 6, we strapped the 2 Giants together on the race (Guess what happens when 2 Giants strap in, you get a Baby-Giant. Ha ha ha). Anyways, we got there at 7 and boy-o-boy what a spectacle it was.

The starting point was vibrant with multitudes of hues of bright jerseys, spandex (all black!), bikes, helmets, bike racks (all black again), trees, tender coconuts, blue skies and green grass (yes, it was vibrant with multitudes of hues!!!)

(*photo credit - someone in BBC, forget the link from when I pulled this off)

What a Quantum leap the biking scene has taken since the last time I raced at BBCh. The field has completely changed now – there are teams of riders training for speed and endurance, there’s an wide assortment of bikes –Giants, Cannodales, Ordeas, Bianchis, Btwins and the Treks. Whatever happened to the Firefox that used to rule to roost a couple of years back!

Everyone’s talking about ‘components’, the slicks, shifters, oz (added so that I can quickly put an etcetera), etc, etc – and a whole lot of tech jargon. And you can draw up an NxN grid with hybrid, road, MTB on one of the axes; Price of the bikes starting from 10K to 2lakhs on one; Sex on the other; age, height, weight, nationality, hair color, eye color on the other and while you confuse the hell out of everyone, you will still have one guy/gurl on each cell of the NxN matrix. (you get the drift, right)

Okie fine, now let’s start riding, its 7:30AM. And we started by turning around. It was a rolling start (I hadn’t trained just for this bit and it cost me the race, can you believe that!!!) we went back to the highway and rode together as a pack till the starting line and then the pack took off.
We rode from the Nandi turn-off point on the NH7 to the Base of the hill and then continued around the hill. Nandi turn-off point to the Idly point is 8k and the loop around the hill was 17km. So we did 2 loops around the hill and back to the starting point making a 51k in all.

The route was excellent and ideal for the road race. It included a climb that lasted nearly 3km (from 960m to 1055m altitude) and getting to about 12% gradient (50m climb in 420m) before it fell rapidly. I managed to go from 9kmph to 57kmph in a matter of 90sec on the downhill… The granny gears were tested and tested again during the second loop as well.

I finished in a modest 1:59hours, about 6mins behind Venkat. And since then I have simply been raving about the transformation of the Bangalore Biking Scene… what a lovely scene, I say...

Been there, Run that

In case you were wondering where I have been for so long, let me assure you I have been running around.
Two runs to cover the small East European town of Timisoara, a run around Car street to Kunjara Giri in Udupi and a couple of runs in the humid Chennai summed up the past one month for me.
Date & Place: Timisoara, Romania. 25-Mar-2010.
Notes: Covered one half of the city center on a 5k run, armed with a 3D map and my favorite running shoes, stray dog chases & ghosty children's parks notwithstanding.

Date & Place: Timisoara, Romania. 26-Mar-2010. The other half

Place & Date: Udupi, 11-Apr-2010. My birth town was the perfect place to run, even as I passed a major milestone in life, which took 30yrs to get cross!! I ran from the Krishna temple, Car street along the highway to Kunjaragiri, to Shreya's tulabara pooja at the Kujnaragiri temple. Lost buckets-full of sweat.

Place & Date: Kodambakkam, Chennai. 13-Apr-2010 - The first time Shreya ran around her own neighbourhood (have you??). We made some nice circles and squares!

Place & Date: Marina Beach. 12-Apr-2010. The unusually high sea levels were traced to sweat glands of one insane running trying a interval training along the beach!!