Friday, November 03, 2006


I remember beinga little kid and complaining to my mom in the middle of summer how bored I was. The sun was shining, the streets full of neighborhood kids, and several siblings available for entertainment. That never changed the fact that I was bored. Mom would inevitably tell me to go find something to do and quit bugging her or she'd find something for me to do. Which meant cleaning or some other equally tedious chore. Off I'd go to entertain myself...or bug someone else at least.

Lately, I've been bored. When I get home Bob asks how my day was. My reply, "boring". Someone asks me how I'm doing. My reply, "I'm bored". Well, I don't actually say that becuase how do you respond to that? But that's what I want to say.

My analysis:
I think its started with the colder weather. Its no secret that I hate winter.

Secondly its my school class. I'm in geography (its a required elective for my associates) and it is so boring. The teacher is boring, the subject is boring. Its only redeeming quality is that I only have to suffer through it one night a week.

Then there's work. I have a great job. Good co-workers, good boss. Great perks and benefits, great company. But I'm bored. I sit in a desk all day and do the same thing everyday.

I need some spice, a challenge, a change. Something, anything! I feel for the first time in my life that I'm stuck in a bored rut. Its not a pleasant place to be for someone who is usually lively, talkative and debateably eccentric, at least a little kooky.

I will now take your (and by "your" I mean mom since I guess she's the only one who reads this) suggestions for how to get my oomph back.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

I'm a Fisher(wo)man

This last Friday my team at work had a team building outing. SNORE, I know. Actually, it was a lot of fun. My boss got a new boat and decided to take us up to Jordanelle to go fishing for the morning.
It was so cold! At first anyway. I started out with snow pants, my pink puffy coat, gloves, scarf, earmuffs. The only thing that was cold were my noes and my toes! I also, was the only person who wasn't cold. Could have also been the giant thermos of hot chocolate I kept nursing. Once the sun came out it was a beautiful fall day. We had divided ourselves into two teams of three, each team to a boat. My boss's neighbor, Jerry, provided the second boat. Jerry also happens to be somewhat of a pro fisherman.
Jerry caught the most fish of the day, but second to him was Heather and me! We creamed the other team, it was so much fun. Everyone did catch something so even though the other team got creamed by a couple of girls, we all still enjoyed the day. Some of us just more than others.
Here are some pictures of the trip for your viewing pleasure.

That's Heather on the left, no doubt reeling in another "big one". Jerry is on the right overseeing his little apprentices. Oh, and what's that? Taunya, holding two lovely small mouth bass. I'm bragging to the opposing team on the other boat.

This is Lane, our other teammate with one of his healthier catches of the day.
Ha ha! Here is me again. By this time I was such a pro I was reeling in fish left and right. This little guy got a kiss, a photo op, and I sent him on his way.

I didn't really kiss him.

Here's all our fish which Bob later helped me gut. If I can get those pictures onto my computer I'll blog that experience at a later date.

And here is the whole group. Steve (the boss), Me, Heather, Lane (seated), Rob, Rondo (on dock). As you can see by the smiles we all had a lot of fun.
Then we went to lunch at the Red Rock in Park City. Dang tastiest veggie pizza I've had, maybe even better than Geppettos? I'll have to have an official taste competition to see.

Monday, October 16, 2006

I'm Starting a Boycott

I love Halloween. I love to get dressed up- this year I'm a mad scientist! I love seeing other people get dressed up. I like the spooky decorations and the fall leaves and trick-or-treaters and anything else you can think of. Oh! Pumpkin carving, I love carving pumpkins (hint, hint honey) So what could I possibly be boycotting about this time of year. Some of you know. For those that don't please read on.

Trunk-or-treat! What a load of hooey. There are so many things wrong with this.

#1- You can't change a decades old tradition, that's very party-pooper of you.

#2- I have a house of my own for the first time ever, and I want trick-or-treaters. I love seeing the cute little kids in all their costumes. If I had kids of my own I'd want to parade them around and show off how cute they are. And I'd like them to experience one of my favorite childhood holiday traditions.

#3- This is from Bob, and I wholeheartedly agree. You are just making your kids fatter. Yes, the take is usually bigger for trunk-or-treats which kids love. But they are going to eat all that candy and they aren't walking/running around the neighborhood to collect it. As far as I'm concerned trunk-or-treat is the leading cause of childhood obesity in America (at least for the month of October)

#4- It seems that trunk-or-treats occur more frequently in lower income neighborhoods. Perhaps these people think its unsafe to send their kids out. Go with them! You have to be with them at trunk-or-treat anyway, or is it just that you don't want to walk/run around with your kids. So maybe trunk-or-treat is the leading cause of all obesity in America regardless of age.

Please, please, please send your kids out for Halloween. They will have fun, you will have fun. And I will be a happier person.

That is all I have to say. Keep an eye out for my official boycott petition in the mail.

Let me know what you think. Trunk-or-treat, or Trick-or-treat?

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

No Motivation

What is it about the first frosty mornings of fall that just kicks your butt?

Well, they kick mine. And Bob's too. Most that know us would probably agree that we are hard working, industrious people. We don't like to waste time or be lazy. But too frequently in the last couple of weeks we have found ourselves sleeping in (gasp!), and missing workouts (double gasp!)- if you are a cyclist you know the gravity of these consequences for Bob. Seems like there was something else, but I can't think of it right now. Oh yes, huge loss of motivation for work.

So here is my answer (excuses*) as to why the first frosty mornings of fall just kicks my butt:

- Its cold outside. Who wouldn't rather be snuggled 12 inches deep in blankets? And I know once I get out and that cold hits me its going to wake me right up, and who wants to do that? No, I can't just turn the heat up, that's expensive.

- Its dark outside. Running in the dark is scary. And sometimes you trip.

- I've now realized that summer flew by and I didn't get to play enough thus making me sour at work.

- A new house. Lots of work to get the house ready for winter and the yard prepared for spring. Makes me too tired for exercise and I don't want to be at work when there is more important stuff at home. Granted, Bob has been doing all the work at home. What have I been doing? Not much.

- I have an innate need to hibernate for winter. This also includes binging in preparation for the long nap. This creates disastrous results when combined with the lag in exercise.

I do love the fall though, especially the smell of the fallen leaves in the late afternoon. So if I could just start my day around sunrise (that's about 8:00am nowadays isn't it?) and call it a day around 6pm- just before those chilly breezes come in- that would be great.

*Bob says "Excuses are like bum-holes. Some just stink more than others."

P.S. This is very important. Part of the delightful binging, adds guilt to the lack of exercise, but gets me through the days of work, is argueably the best part of fall. Cold Stone Creamery Fall Flavors! Here are some of my recommended combinations, I also recommend trying something new every time:

1/2 Pumpkin Ice Cream
1/2 Cheesecake Ice Cream
Graham Cracker Crust

7/8 Pumpkin Ice Cream
1/8 Coffee Ice Cream (adjust for your love of coffee)
Reeses Pieces
White Chocolate Chips

Cinnamon Ice Cream (comes closer to Thanksgiving)
Apple filling
Pie Crust
Waffle Pieces
Reeses Pieces (these go good in just about everything)

You can thank me later.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Happy Anniversary!

Today is a special day. Three years ago today Bob and I were married. It has gone by fast, and it has been great. Let's recap.

Bob and I get married!
Bob starts training while going to school and working a full and part time job. Impressive. Not to mention he showers his new wife with love, attention, and "I love you's". What a man!

Taunya loses one job and gets another
Bob continues school, work, and cycling.
Gets upgraded from a Cat 5 to Cat 2. Yup, that' s my man!
Swallow pride and move in with my mom so that Bob can just do cycling and school, no work.
Find out Bob can't not work. Oh well, we tried. No one ever complained of being married to someone who has a job.
Celebrate one year of wedded bliss by traveling to Bob's mission in Brazil. Very cool.
One of the things I appreciate most is how often Bob tells me I'm beautiful. Sometimes I think he's crazy, but most of the time I think he's dead sexy!

Lots of fun, make new friends and see lots of places while attending bike races together. I love going to the races with Bob, cheering him on and helping him out. I'm really proud of how hard he works at it, and the integrity he has while racing.
Move to Arizona. But first, celebrate two years of successful "I do's" in Las Vegas. Its not what you think, we were there for a bike show and spent the day in the convention center.
We get Zeke and Blanche.
Bob isn't the easiest guy to figure out, even after a couple years of marraige. I love learning new things about him. He encourages me to be better without pointing out any faults. He is supportive in all the right ways.

We get to work together every day, and we make a pretty good team.
Bob goes to Belgium. Being apart really sucks. I know I can do it, but that doesn't mean I have to like it...and I don't. But seeing him at the train station in Tielt after 2 months was awesome!
We move back to SLC and crash at our coach's house until we can find our own place.
We find our own place. It is so cute. Bob has proven to be quite the handyman. Fixing, building, painting, cleaning, cooking. You name it, he can do it.
Bob gets his coaches license, only misses 3-4 questions. Well done.
Bob gets his EMT license. Very well done.
Celebrate three years of holy matrimony in Moab. Actually, I kidnapped Bob and took him down there. He had no idea, it was great.
Bob starts off year number four by getting back to training. The goal is a Cat 1 upgrade for spring of '07.
We make efforts every day to love and serve each other. Bob puts up with all my moods and quirks, and believe me, there are a lot. How one person can be so patient I don't know, but I'm extremely grateful.

So there, you have it. Three years of being with my best friend (saving you all the mushy details) No one out there could make me happier or keep me sane better than Bob, and I am without a doubt the luckiest girl in the world to have a husband who loves me so much. I don't think I appreciate him enough, but I'll keep trying.

Taunya + Bob = LOVE!

Friday, September 22, 2006


I have some bad news to share. I've been diagnosed (read: in a chain email I saw this and decided it fit my personality quite well) with SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder). Yes, this is a real disease (or mental state, or excuse, take your pick) see link here

I hate winter, there isn't a think about it I like. Snow is nice the week of Christmas but I have to say that last Christmas in AZ I didn't particularly miss it, I still enjoyed the lights and presents and music just fine. I don't ski, I don't snowboard. Sure, I could learn, but that costs bucks, and unless someone is willing to donate the money, the equipment, an instructor, and TIME then I will not be learning to ski/board in the foreseeable future, and I'm fine with this because as I mentioned, I hate winter.

Its mostly the cold that gets me though, it can snow all it wants, as long as its above 55 degrees (I am willing to withstand that slight bit of cold just to truly be able to appreciate summer when it finally drags its lazy butt out again) that of course is 55 as a low, not a high. I even quite enjoy the rain. Again, as long as its above 55.

By some unfortunate series of events I was born in Utah. Not southern Utah with the red rock, hiking, Lake Powell, and heat. But the Salt Lake Valley (yes, I really do love it, I'm just in a bit of a funk) Where we get cold (humph) snow (gasp!) and inversion (gag, cough-cough). Somewhere in me there is a beach bum sunbathing on the sandy beaches of wherever.

Here is the depressing, sheltered side of me. I've never been to a beach. Not a real beach anyway. When I was 12ish my family traveled to Fortuna, CA (link too long to post, check out mapquest. BTW if anyone knows how to post a link but have it appear as the text you desire, please let me know) in the winter months, and we played in the water there. It was freezing cold, but we did it anyway because it was the ocean and we were kids.

So one day, hopefully while I still have a youthful physique (sort of) I'd like to visit a nice warm beach with hot sun, blue water, and no day planner to attend to. Until that happens I guess I'll be sitting here in fabulous SLC- where the snow falls, the temperature drops, the inversions settles in, and we're all warned to stay inside for the health of our lungs- waiting for the slow 6 months of winter (October-March it seems some years, yes this might be a bit drastic, but you forget I'm in a funk and apt to rant. And, as far as I'm concerned if its not summer, it's winter) to painfully slug by so that I can again bust out the flip-flops.

Ah, you know me so well. Yes, the flip-flops will certainly be seen before that. I wear them any day the temperature is above 60, or if its just a quick trip somewhere and the weather is dry, or if I'm being defiant and trying to show winter who's boss.

For fabulous flip-flops see the link at the left sidebar.

P.S. Sorry for the blantant mis-use of the parenthesis, that's just how my brain thinks, and I wouldn't want to rob you of the experience of the authentic me.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

How To Scavange

We did it! Bob and I have purchased our first home. We've also purchased our first piece of furniture/appliance, a fridge. We've been married for three years and until last week had never purchased so much as a mug for ourselves. Thanks to some wedding gifts, thriftiness, and hard work we've managed to put together quite a charming little home at no cost to us. Except for the home that is.

I know, I'm sorry I still don't have pictures, there is currently an issue getting them off my camera, onto my home computer that doesn't have the internet, and to my work computer that does have the internet, but no place for disks or USB drives or cameras due to the secure nature of my work.

So if there is anyone willing to take, transfer, and email pics to me, I'd appreciate it. That is assuming anyone is actually reading my blog.

So, I'm going to share with you some savy scavenging tips. I say savy, becuase anyone can pull something out of a dumpster (no, I have not actually done this) or pick up a busted piece of whatever at the local D.I. I, however, will show you how to score stuff that is truly usable and attractive...or at least can be.

#1- Get married.
This was a big one for Bob and I, and we thank our many generous friends and family. What we didn't get as actual gifts we were able to purchase with giftcards or cash from wedding guests. If you're already married, you know what I'm talking about and you should take care of those gifts unless you plan on doing the whole over again, although I hear the take isn't quite as good the second time around. If you're not married please see this amusing link$fn=default.htm . Type in "Dating vs. Hanging Out 2006" and search in the Ensign, the first results from Elder Dalin H. Oaks is for you.

#2- Be creative.
If someone wants to give you a table for example, but it doesn't currently match your decor, what do you do? God gave us Home Depot (more especially the paint deparment) for a reason. Sand it down, slap some paint or stain on it, and if you're really daring maybe a decorative flourish or two, and you've got yourself a lovely, custom dining table your friends and family will ooh and ahh over. Which is the ultimate goal, right?

#3- Have a variety of (financially sound) friends.
This is important for two reasons: a) you need people who have various tastes in home decor so that when the time comes for your new acquisition you have a plethera (that one's for you Kendra) of options. b) if you have nothing but poor friends you're not likely to get very good hook-ups. But acquaintances in different tax brackets will be willing to give up more/less quality items at different intervals of time.

#4- Beggars can't be choosers.
If you need a couch and all someone has to offer is a mauve, sea-shell-esque, 80's wonder...take it! Unless you really want to fork out the $500 plus dollars to Furniture Warehouse (even though I've never bought furniture I prefer this store to any other I've ventured into- that's affordable anyway).

That is the story of how Bob and I have decorated our little space so quaintly and so cheaply. How many other (non-rich) people can say they've decorated their home without one credit card/store credit line/loan from Daddy?

Ok, so there are probably quite a few, but I'm still proud of us.

For more tips on scavenging furniture, tools, clothing, food, etc. leave a comment!

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Wear Your Helmet...You Putz!

I am just as appreciative as the next of the wonderful feeling of the wind through your hair, the sun on your face, and the distresses of helmet hair. However, I like my brains just as they are. I doubt they'd be any more useful spewed out across the pavement.

A little graffic? Perhaps.

In this wonderful state of Utah we have seatbelt laws, carseat laws, and DOT certified helmets. So why is it not law to wear them? WHY?

I can't emphasize enough how disturbing it is to me that so many motorcyclists, scooterists, and cyclists continue to go out on our congested streets. Which, FYI have had more traffic accidents this year than 2005
(see,1249,645193259,00.html end of the article for stats).
What would their mothers think?

While I'm on the subject of thinking, no doubt these bare-headed commuters are thinking that they are safe, they follow the rules of the road and drive defensively. In response I'd like to refer you to a recent Deseret News article,,1249,645193961,00.html
please note the statement about half way down by Tim Buche. You may be smart (though if you aren't wearing a helmet then you probably aren't) but other drivers aren't.

Maybe they are just too cool?
Not likely. Unless they are part of the Emergency-Room-Rules gang. To my knowledge, no such gang exists.

My point, wear a helmet, someone out there loves you and doesn't want to plan your funeral. As far as I'm concerend those who go without helmets are about as bright as those who continue to smoke. Both do stupid, life-threatening, insurance raising, preventable bad habits. At least smokers can pass some (actually, very little) blame off to addiction.

Note to my brother who smokes...with love, please read above.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Promised Pictures

Here are some pictures that I have previously promised to post. At some point in the future I'll create a photo album where you can browse through all my posted photos. Unfortunately, this function is not available at this time.

This is Bob getting his waterbottle for third place up the Snowbird Hill Climb (see related story )

This is Bob on the Snowbird podium with L- Norm Bryner,2nd and M- Nate Page, 1st. Note the weenie water bottle in hand. Yes, I'm still a little bitter.

Bob, with Bill & Celia Underwood, two of his most supportive fans.

But here is Bob's #1 fan! The traditional good luck kiss, I can't let Bob race without it. This is one of my favorite pictures ever and it is actually from the front page Deseret News article Bob was featured in which ran October 2005. Sorry, no link available.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

A House Is a Home When It Shelters the Body and Comforts the Soul

- Phillip Moffat

Bob and I are soon to be homeowners. With very patient assistance by Travis Pugh our brother/realtor we have found a home that is just about perfect for us. I say "just about" becuase there doesn't exist a house in our price range that would be absolutely perfect for us. We should close in a couple weeks and I'll make an official announcement then complete with pictures.

Today is Bob's last day of his EMT class. He had some in class tests today but will take the official State exam in a couple weeks. After that its back to school and starting to test with the different fire departments. He'll also be trying to get work as an EMT and then coaching will start for him in fall as well. I think that should keep him sufficiently busy enough, don't you?

As for me, school starts Tuesday night with Geography. It is my last class that I need to get my Associates degree. I do have to test out of a computer class, but I'm reasonably confident that I can do that. I'm so excited to have finally accomplished something with school that I think I'll throw myself a party. Hey, its been six years in the making, I deserve it. Work is also going well. For those of you who don't know I work for Merrick Bank, an industrial bank that issues credit cards primarily to the sub-prime lending group. Its a great company with great benefits and perks, like the massage chair.

Bob is more or less done with racing this season. He'll be taking some time off the bike before he starts training for next season where he'll be riding for a regional team yet to be named. It should be a really good opportunity and should cover nearly all the costs of his racing. Yeah!

Thanks for checking in. Come back before too long and see pictures of our new home! If you leave comments, I might even invite you over for a BBQ.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Tour de Gap- Parowan, UT

Ah, good 'ol Parowan. Where else can you stay in comfort at a localized national hotel chain with small town America spread out around you?
Alright, so you can do that just about anywhere between Salt Lake and St. George. But Parowan has something distinctive, and unique; the annual Tour de Gap bike race. Allow me to regale you with the adventures or our weekend:

After waffling back and forth about whether or not he was going to race (possible school conflicts didn't help the waffling any) Friday evening we were packed and on our way to Parowan. Due to lovely Happy Valley traffic and a potty stop for the dogs, then a pit stop for us we didn't arrive until 9:50 PM, 10 minutes before packet pick-up closed. We checked into the lovely Days Inn and immediately crashed trying not to think of the looming 6am wake up call.

Saturday started bright and early for room 120. Blanche and Zeke (our dogs. Remind me to post a picture) knew something was up as Bob and I criss-crossed the room gathering the days essentials: water bottles, race bible, butt cream, etc. I don't know why, but they seem to like to go to the bike races. Which is beyond me because they spend a good majority of the day sitting quietly (yes quietly, I have wonderful dogs) in the back of the scion.
The race was 48 miles and mostly flat. Bob said the pro/1/2 field had a max speed of 45mph! I sped to the feed zone; only to find out I didn't know where it was, found myself on the race course as the lead rider started coming though. He was only a single rider and not a threat for the GC or the stage win. I only had a short while till the group was to come through and I still didn't know where the feed zone was. So I sped ahead and followed the cardboard arrows the racers follow until I came across a section of road with a large shoulder which contained several SUV's and women with water bottles. This was the place.
After last weeks feeding fiasco ( I had to make sure I got this right. By the time the racers came through the single rider had been caught by the pack and there was a new group of five off the front. I didn't know any of the riders, and had full confidence that they would be reeled in by the time the race finished in 20 miles, which they were. Here comes the pack, with Bob on the front (yes, he was pulling in the break with little to no help by any of the teams there. No, none of the teams had a man in the break so they should have helped pull. This important scenario will be a factor in the coming stages) The feed zone was flat and fast. I had to jog a little to lessen the impact of Bob ripping the bottle out of my hand. I thought he was going to knock me right over. Impressive speed, no? By the time we wait for the next field of racers that my friends husband was racing in (c'mon a Sunday ride in the park could rival their speed through the feed zone); sped off to try to pass both fields, and have a potty break we managed to miss the sprint finish by a matter of seconds. All that really matters is everyone got the same time. Which is a good way to go heading into the afternoons criterium.
Between the road race and crit there was very little action. A shower, leg rub, pb&j, and excessive amounts of vegging.
Not much happened in the crit. Not unless you count a breakaway of Swindlehurst (Burke, a pro rider who lives in UT) Flynn, and _____ (I never did find out who the third guy was) lapping the field and taking the time bonuses, and another break of two only seconds from lapping the field and a crash of two teammates in the final lap. Bob worked hard to bridge up to the gaps twice. Each time he got painfully close then they noticed him and rode harder so that he couldn't jump on, dang it. These efforts combined with pulling in a couple early breaks and the work in the road race would eventually lead to his demise.
Oh! and some kind of bug stung me or bit me or something and left something in my neck GROSS!
We did get some great Mexican that night though.

Sunday's road race went from Cedar Breaks lodge by Brian head and back. Very rolling, and high elevations. Flats are but a dream on this day. After the first climb Swindlehurst was away (big surprise) and the pack containing Bob was only a minute or so behind. As per Bob between there and the feed zone an attack got away and no one was bringing it in. Bob wants to race for first, not fifth. He worked with Harward to bring them in and after a couple surges by the pack Bob was done. At the feed zone he was by himself a few minutes off the pack. He tried chasing for a while and when he realized he wouldn't be able to catch back on he called it a day and just rode in at a steady tempo.
The same steady tempo was applied at the time trial which was good enough to get Bob a finishing time. No one likes a DNF next to their name.
Taunya sniffed and sneezed all the way home, excited to be away from whatever hellacious allergen that was plaguing her all weekend.

Ah, nothing like Monday morning after 4 races in 2 days and 1000 miles on the road.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

That's "Coach" Bob To You

Congratulations are in order (again- see race report) to Bob. He has just recieved his coaching license from the UCA (cycling authority) He is currently licensed for club riders but will be recieving his Elite license in November. As many of you know Bob is a virtual gyser of knowledge in regards to fitness and diet. Don't shy away, he's still the same great guy willing to talk to you about your training and racing, now you just have to pay him! Don't worry, we will be giving a family/friends discount.
I'm very proud of him (is it that obvious?) he had to do a lot of studying to get his license.
Next week is the last week of his EMT course, and he'll test a week or so after that, wish him luck and keep your fingers crossed.

If you are interested in having Bob coach you he'll be working for J.R. Smith Coaching ( check out the website and talk with Bob.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Weekend Race Report

My apologies, I was going to post pictures with this but I'll have to add them in later as I haven't downloaded them yet. I also was going to have Bob write this since he knows better what happened during the race then I do. But alas, you're stuck with my simple, picture-less race analysis/recap.

Snowbird Hill Climb- 3rd place
(Disclaimer: Taunya didn't do the race and is merely trying to sum up what she thinks Bob told her happened, actual events may vary. But the result and finish times are accurate)
Saturday we got up bright and early- 6:30am, not easy for a weekend- and headed to 9400S. and 2000E. for the start. It’s always fun to go to the start and see all your friends. Do a little schmoozing and trash talking, whatever the occasion may call for.
This is one of the races that I have to leave before Bob or else I'll get stuck behind the racers and the cars and an aged man on a mountain bike will beat me up the canyon (not kidding, this happened once). So I gave him his good luck kiss, and an encouraging butt slap and he took off.
It was a beautiful drive up the canyon with my windows rolled down and some Capital Inicial (Portuguese punk band) on the radio; it was very Zen or something. Bob started up at 8am with Stormin' Norman driving the pace the first few miles. A small group of four got up the road a ways but the peleton kept them near enough to bring them in when the time was right. Norm decided the time was right and attacked with Bob jumping on his wheel (you think riding the canyon is hard, try attacking up it) they started to gain on the lead group up the road and were able to pass them as Nate Page started powering away from the peleton. Nate just kept ramping it up until he passed the chase group and the now lead group of Bob and Norm. Not to be beaten so easily Norm attacked again after Nate and Bob pursued. And there is your top three. Nate broke the 48 minute mark, Norm came in about 20 second after and Bob finished 3rd with a time of 48:23.
So then we waited around for 2 hours for awards. Not too bad because we got to enjoy a nice brunch with JR (coach) Jill (his wife) and two of Bob's biggest fans, Bill and Celia (sp?). Awards finally rolled around and Bob received.... (Oh, the anticipation)... a water bottle. What! I know you're in shock, we were too. Surely a race that brings in over $15,000 can do better than that for a podium finish? Nope, apparently not. We didn't even get our entry fee back, we were not happy. Maybe they just gave extra to 1st and 2nd you ask? Nope again; 2nd got sunglasses in addition to the water bottle (which all prizes given away are always just donated schwag, they don't cost the organizers a red cent) First place did get a sweet northface tent, but he wanted cash too. So we were bummed, but compensation was on its way.

Before I continue- Note to race organizers: Cat 4/5's love schwag they are usually the rich lawyers/doctors/accountants on the nicest bikes. Cat 1/2's are poor twenty-something’s usually supported by doting parents or an incredibly awesome wife. We're poor, show us the money!

Wolfcreek Road Race- 4th place
(see Disclaimer above)
Up and at 'em 7:00am. On the road to Francis at 8:00am. Neither of us are feeling so hot. Bob is worn out from yesterday (I forgot to mention that after his noble race efforts he still mowed the lawn for me. Yeah! My husband rules!) and Taunya is dizzy or light-headed or something. But, we've already paid for the race so off we go. Or at least off Bob goes, Taunya sort of lolly-gags about and eventually makes her way to the feed zone 20 miles up the road to 9,507 feet elevation.
Bob comes through the feedzone only a minute or so behind the lead rider, no big deal since there is still 60 miles to race and the lead rider is on his own, and we don't know who he is which is usually a sign that he's going to blow up. Of course, he could be that new young talent that blows everyone else away; he wasn't. So back to the feedzone; Bob comes whizzing by and $*!@# (yes, sorry, I really did swear. I'm pretty sure Bob did too) I missed him! He now has to ride 40 more miles up and down canyon roads on the single water bottle left on his bike. I now spend the next 2 hours worrying about whether or not he's going to bonk as I wait for them to hit the turnaround and come back to the feedzone 20 miles before the finish. Norm comes through one minute ahead of a small group which (yeah!) has Bob driving the pace on the front trying to bring Norm back. So I'm ready this time, I've got his water bottle I hold it out, Bob is reaching for it... snatch! The guy in front of him takes it from me. Not only that but he dropped it! Here is where I'd like to give a special "thanks" to the girl up the road who successfully hands Bob a water bottle so that he can go on to claim 4th.

So it was a great weekend. We were wiped out by the end, but we had fun. Thanks for checking in and feel free to leave any congratulatory remarks for Bob.

P.S. Where was the compensation you ask? Bob won $85 for 4th. Not bad, at least we broke even for the weekend.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

The Man of La Mancha

I just got back from a relaxing weekend in Idaho. My mom and I made- what we try to make an annual- trip to the Festival Opera in Logan, UT. While there we stayed across the border with our very good friends Becky and Dennie (special thanks to the Giles). In brief, here is our weekend.

5:00PM Friday, August 4th
Taunya gets off work. Waits for mom to leave for Logan.

Mom finally makes it, late because of traffic. What we are about to find out is that 10 minutes makes an hour of difference in traffic.

We finally make it to Bountiful. We have been crawling ever since downtown and are hungry. We stop at Village Inn. My compliments to the chef on the orange marmalade/cream cheese stuffed french toast topped with strawberries. Yes, they were good, even better than they sound.

On the road again. In the next two hours we will have discussed everything from politics, family, the environment, fashion, etc. Girls know what these conversations are like. You start out talking about what you did that afternoon and through twists and turns in conversation you’re crying your eyes out while discussing the innermost parts of your soul. OK- wasn't quite that dramatic. But great conversation.

Finally arrive at the Giles beautiful country cottage and head to watch the softball game coached by Bro. Dennie and then to the ice cream place, forgot the name. I had a strawberry creamy. I have been craving strawberry things a lot lately. Had a strawberry smoothie yesterday and have been consuming more strawberry yogurt than might be healthy. Don't ask, girls are just weird.

1:00AM, Saturday
Finally make it to bed, stayed up playing dice game, 10,000. These baby boomers are hard to keep up with.

9:00AM, Saturday
Time to get up already? I muster the courage and dress to go run. It’s a beautiful canyon and a sunny morning. Those false flats will kill you I swear. I made it about 3miles total, not bad. I didn't run the whole way, but a majority. I thought it would make me feel better for the rest of the day; that ended up being mostly true.

View Man of La Mancha the story of how the story of Don Quixote came to be. Very fabulous. Score was great, performances great, music stirring. Plus we had great seats. Thanks, Logan Festival Opera, , we always have a great time.

This was a dark time in my life. I don't like to talk about it, but as you are good friends and faithful readers...I've been dying to get my hair done for a while, just a trim and color. Strawberry-Blonde (more strawberry than blonde) yup, more strawberries, again I don't know why. We tried at least 8 different salons in Logan and no one could fit me in, some weren't even very nice about it. So where did we go? I'm embarrassed to say...let's just say it was a super retailer with a less than desirable reputation.

My hair is orange. If you know Boden, yup just like that. Cute cut though. But orange is not my color.

I've bought some cool blonde color to take the orange out, it doesn't work, and I’m still orange, just not quite as harsh. A girl might be able to tell the difference of orange #1 and orange #2, but no man on earth would ever notice. No, not even the swishy ones.

12:30AM Sunday
Off to bed late again. Watched Dreamer good movie, made me laugh, made me cry.

9:00AM Sunday
I can't go out in public with orange hair. Thank heavens I had the foresight to get a box of my original (if not slightly darker) hair color in case plan B (for those of you unable to keep up plan B was the blonde) didn't work.

Yeah! Plan C worked. I'm now slightly darker than my original color (with a little bit of those orange highlights poking through, but its kind of pretty) and slightly poorer too.

The moral of this story- don't get your hair done on a whim and only go to someone you know and trust.

BTW- Does anyone have someone they know and trust? Because the person I knew and trusted has closed up shop. The winning referral could be worth a handsome reward (though I wouldn't bet on it if I were you).

Friday, August 04, 2006

HUD for 100...please?!

Buying a house isn't all that much fun. Not when you're destitute anyway. Alright, we're not destitute, but trying to buy a house makes me feel that way.

Recently a saw a picture of someone's new home under construction and it made me a little jealous. Not that it was big because after living with our coach in his spacious home I've decided that is too much square footage for me to take care of. And it’s not because it’s new because I'd rather have an existing home that has some character and big trees in a well established neighborhood. I'm jealous because they can afford it.

Bob and I both work hard and make fairly good money; especially when you take into account the lack of degrees we hold. So why when we're looking for a home can't we find anything in a nice neighborhood and that isn't falling apart? We're really looking primarily in West Valley, though we'd love something in Taylorsville. We have awesome credit and the only debt we have is our car. We're not looking for anything too big or too lavish. But man our choices are limited. We've been looking mostly at foreclosure and HUD homes because that is all our budget will allow.

I am confident that if we're patient we'll find something that works for us. It’s just a little depressing in the mean time that two very hard working people who have tried to be smart financially can't afford a reliable roof over their heads. It makes me really wonder how people out there less fortunate than us make ends meet. It is upsetting to me that while interest rates, housing costs, gasoline, health care, and energy costs are all rising (some quite rapidly) that wages remain stagnant and in many companies (airlines for example) they are taking pay cuts. Though I'm not sure many CEO's would say they are feeling the pinch.

Bob wants to be a fireman (starting pay around $30,000); I want to stay at home with our kids- is that even realistic? Thankfully we pay our tithing, we know how to be frugal, and my mom taught me to reuse sandwich bags. We'll work it out. But not everyone out there is as lucky as we are.

Please, post a comment, I like reading what people have to say about the topic, or what I wrote.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Scooter Courtesies

Being the gas-conscious consumers that we are a couple years ago we purchased a scooter. Actually, my fabulous husband surprised me with one for Christmas! The scooter is number one, a lot of fun. Number two its cheap to buy, insure, and drive- getting 80 something mpg. When Bob purchased our scooter he really shopped around as any smart buyer would do. But of course, he is a guy and can't bare the thought of puttering around at 30 mph on a toy sized scooter so he buys an often mistaked for a bullet bike scooter. A 150cc (don't ask me what that means, all I know is so far I haven't met anyone with something more powerful) Vento R4i. The Green Hornet we affectionately call it. It can easily do 50 with us both on there, and more with only a single rider.

What's the point you ask?

Ok- If I'm driving my merry-self to work on my scooter doing 45 in a 40mph zone why does every other shmuck on the road feel the need to buzz by me in a huff and hurry like I'm crawling along? Do they not realize that to pass me they are going at least 10mph more over the limit then I am already going? This is proof of the egotistical society (note to self- write humble commentary on egotistical society) that we've become. When just the site of a smaller mode of transportation keeping up with your superior machine sends you into a flurry of speed (which, I shouldn't even need mention, causes the little scooter driver a bit of fear that the passing driver is possessed of some fit of rage that could likely endager said scooter driver)

So next time you see a scooter on the road pass (only if needed) with kindness as the typical scooter driver is no more than a happy-go-lucky, laid back citizen with concerns for finances and the environment and wishes you no harm or disrespect.

Remember the Golden Rule, and Karma, and what goes around comes around, etc.

P.S. Yes, I use parenthesis a lot which just goes to show how often I ramble, get off topic, and talk to myself. I wouldn't want you to loose the spirit of Taunya by using proper grammer/punctuation.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

A Commentary on the Controversies of Cycling

So if you've been watching the news at all in the last week or so you are undoubtedly aware of the public humiliation the sport of cycling is currently enduring. I've had numerous people ask my thoughts regarding various allegations and operations that are currently underway. So here is my take (and if I may be so bold as to add Bob's name to this opinion as he and I have visited these topics as of late and seem to be in agreement upon the subject)

Et Tu? I never would have pictured small town Floyd as a doper. (Although I said the exact same thing about our friend Tyler) Yes, I know nothing has been confirmed yet. But to point out the obvious: 8 minutes down one day, gains it all back the next? While watching the live coverage of the now infamous stage 17 of the Tour de France I commented to those associates with whom I was priveledged to be watching such a momentus occasion that "...seems kind of odd. With all the doping scandals lately, can we still believe in sports miracles"
To make yet another reference to the currently suspended Tyler Hamilton- In a recent interview aired during the 2006 TDF Hamilton agreed with a comment his wife made to the effect that "this is all very confusing and we've been working with lots of doctors etc. to help us understand" contrast that with a statement Landis recently made while on Larry King Live, this is a direct quote "Well, I don't know. That's why I have some experts helping me out to try to understand what's going on here...I have a lot of very intelligent, experienced people helping with this" Face it, its not looking good. I think an historical tour win is turning into an historical embarrasment.

Operation Puerto:
I would have thought a disorganized, secretive, and so far essentially ineffective operation like this would have been in French territory, not in Spain.

So here is a basic update in my limited cycling knowledge:
- Operation Puerto announced late spring/early summer
- Unrealeased list of those implicated includes cyclists and other sportsmen
- Day before TDF Jan Ullrich, Ivan Basso, and others name's released. Team managers hold meeting that evening and decide that any implicated rider will not be allowed to start and will not be replaced. As a result three top contenders of the Tour are suspended by their teams and one Alexander Vinokourov was unable to start the tour becuase five of his teammates were implicated. Vino was and has never been named.
- Two days after the TDF the five Astana (Vino's team) riders are cleared of any wrongdoing.
- A few days later the entire Comunidad Valenciana team was cleared by the investigation.

Anything look a little fishy to you?
#1- Officials had the names for weeks and they announce key players the night before the Tour begins? Could this have been a publicity stunt? No, they wouldn't dare do that to the racers, the teams, the fans, it must have simply been an oversight.

#2- Five members of Vino's team are implicated thereby keeping one of the favorites out of the Tour de France only to find out two days after the tour that, oops sorry, you're all clear? In the meantime the tour is won by an american (no complaint there) that potentially has permanently disgraced the greatest race in the world.

#3- 13 members of one team are now cleared after they could have raced in the Tour de France (had an assistant director not been implicated and arrested) and in the Vuelta (again denied admission due to the operation) and has now had sponsorship pulled no doubt in reaction to the allegations which have recently been recinded.

And the operation isn't over. I'm sure many more mistakes and should-be apologies are on their way.

Will cycling recover from this rash of injustices? Only time will tell. In the meantime sponsors are in a sweat, potential sponsors have had their check books sewn into their jacket pocket with a secure 10 digit- mixture of letters and numbers, with at least one symbol- password to keep cycling out. Cyclists themselves are donning baseball caps and dark shades to make it to the grocery store and back before someone can recognize them and question/chastise/lament the current state of the sport. The fans, oh the fans! The pains we have endured. We defend our sport enthusiastically to anyone who will listen. Despite our embarrasement we soldier on in the hopes that one day we'll have something to be proud of again.

Thank you middle-aged man in the red SUV

This is Taunya; I'm taking over this Blog. Don't try fighting it, my domination is complete!
Guess what happened to me this morning? I'm riding my scooter to work and it was sprinkling just a bit, enough to get some drops on my helmet's visor. At a red light I tried wiping off a few drops so I could see more clearly. When all of a sudden a middle aged man climbs out of the red SUV next to me with a hanky and wipes off my visor for me!
Chivalry is not dead! (I already knew this because my husband is quite the gentleman) But to do something so kind for a complete stranger, while he was no doubt rushing on his way to work. So if anyone knows how I can get his address from his license plate that I memorized, let me know please.

Bob was unable to race the entire Cascade Classic. Time cuts this year were 10%. Just to give you an idea of the amount of pressure that puts the riders under- one of the mountain stages had a time cut of 18 minutes. Needless to say many people were cut along with Bob who suffered from the heat combined with having his seat 2 cm too high. Lesson learned I guess. At least he got to practice his feeding skills as he helped support some other Utah racers while he was there. There really aren't any more big races on the horizon, just some local Utah road races and crits.

Two weeks ago I got a new job. I am an administrative assistant (please, why can't we just say secretary?) for Merrick Bank. I work in the risk department with a pretty good group of people. The bank offers pretty good benefits and other perks that has really made me feel pretty welcome here.
Yesterday Bob started an EMT certification class in Provo (good thing gas pricing aren't climbing huh?) It’s only a four week course and only four days a week, so not too bad. Hopefully it will open some doors to other possible career opportunities.

We are still living with our coach but have started looking for our own place. With any luck we'll find a house, but there is a good reality that we'll still have to rent for a year. We'll see how it goes.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Alright, I know I'm slow at updating this. I don't have quite as much time back here in Utah as I did in Belgium.
I've taken a couple of weeks off racing to get in some good training miles and a family reunion. It was nice to relax a bit and spend some time with the Fam.
This last Saturday was the Porcupine Hillclimb, a race up Big Cottonwood Canyon. I got 6th place, not too shabby. It was pretty brutal, tough competition. I missed 5th by a hair, got outsprinted right at the line. Lesson learned I guess.
Today I'm off to Bend, OR for the Cascade Classic. I should get a fair butt-whooping there but if my form continues and I ride smart I'm hoping to get good enough results to put in for my Cat 1 upgrade.
Well, that's about all. Thanks for checking in and feel free to leave a comment. I appreciate your support.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Back into the swing of things

Well, thanks for checking in. Sorry its a been a while since I last updated anything, we've been pretty busy.
I'm back at Taylor's Bike Shop at least until school starts. And I'm working on getting my Elite Coaching license. In the meantime I've been racing every weekend since we've been back. We've also been back to AZ to pick up all our stuff. Here's a quick recap of all our goings-on since Bear Lake.

May 25-29 Thanksgiving Point Omnium
A fast Cat 2 crit in downtown Provo. I was feeling awesome, unbeatable. I knew I was going to win. I was having trouble with my gears slipping though and to avoid a possible mishap in the thick of the sprint I went with one lap to go. I downshifted and stood up slightly to launch my attack. Right then my gear slips, and down I went. For a skinny cyclist I can sure clean up those road barriers. My bike was more or less totaled, I was able to salvage some parts is all. Luckily I went almost completely unscathed. A few very small bits of road rash was all. But it was enough to pretty much bury my chances at the overall in the stage race. I continued on to help a friend pull off 5th overall and I took 13th. After three days in rainy and windy weather I was glad to be done with it.

Monday 29- Right after the Suncrest uphill TT and awards Taunya and I immediately packed some lunch and did a marathon move. In 48 hours we drove down to AZ, loaded our stuff, cleaned our old place, drove back, unloaded our stuff into storage. Considering its about a 12 hour drive each way, we made some good time, but it knocked us out for a couple days afterward.

June 3- I came back in time for a day or so of rest before I took on the 100 mile State RR Championship. It was over 90 that day and the heat just killed me. I cramped up and came in with a small group off the back of the pack. The heat has been killing me here.

June 10-11 Sugarhouse Crit, Downtown Sate Crit Championship
I was feeling pretty good for Sugarhouse. It was only about 85 that day and I was riding very well. I was patient, on the right wheels and just riding smart. It came down to the final sprint up the hill and I was on Burke Swindlehurst's wheel, someone else shoved me out and that was that. For the downtown crit I had a teammate in the lead break so I was trying to help out in the pack as much as possible. It was a 90 minute crit and I got off the back of the pack about an hour in and got pulled a couple laps later. Luckily the work paid off, my teammate Cameron Hoffman won. It was great to see him not only lap the field, but win the sprint as well.

That brings us up to date. I have High Uintas this weekend and since I haven't climbed consistenly for a very long time we'll see what happens.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Sorry, no pictures this time. They are on another computer.
So, we're back in Utah now! It has been a tiring journey to get here though, let me tell you. Taunya and I left Belgium Monday morning, arrived in Phoenix Monday night, but still had to drive three hours to home. We woke up Tuesday around 4am, we were too used to Belgium time. So we decided to just pack up and head out. We got to Moab and camped that night then woke up at 4am again to finish driving to Salt Lake.
We'll be staying with our coach, JR smith (see ) until we can get work and a place to live. What a guy- took in me, my wife, and our two dogs!

Here's the race report. Went to Bear Lake Classic Saturday, got a killer sunburn, and some serious cramps. I drank about four huge water bottles during the 100 mile race but it just wasn't enough for the heat. I cramped up bad with about 10 miles to go and had to actually unclip my left leg and go 0ne-legged for a while. It wasn't the strong come back I had in mind. The heat just wiped me out, I got to accustomed to the wind and cold of Belgium I guess.
Next up is the Thanksgiving Point Stage Race. I'll update later with some pics and a report.
Thanks for checking in.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

A Day in Brugge

This is Taunya and me in front of the canal in Brugge. Not too far from here we had the best pannini sandwich you could imagine. We spent most of the day in Brugge exploring, taking pictures, and picking up a couple souvenirs.

This is the Chapel of the Precious Blood. Just to the right of this picture was a priest with a sacred relic, a golde caped crystal vial containing what is said to be the blood of Christ. People were lined up to pray to or kiss the relic that has been kept at this church since 1147. See for the full historical story. You can also see a picture of the relic at You can't tell in the picture but it looked like an old dirty, possibly moldy, wadded up rag.

The lovely canal road near the city of Oostkamp where we've been staying. We walked down this very historic road after getting off at the wrong bus stop. The far side of the canal was patrolled by German soldiers during WWII. The left side that we were walking on was U.S. allies territory. We passed by three large cement bunkers covered in grass and moss, one of which had a large rupture on one side from what we're guessing was a german grenade.

Even with all the sightseeing training has been going well. I woke up Wedensday morning to the most dense fog I've ridden in while being here. I was pretty nervous to ride down the farm roads because I wasn't able to see very well.
Tuesday I rode with the team for just over 5 hours on a new hilly route. It was nice to get a few hills on my legs before I head back home. We were supposed to have done a Kermese, but new rules were put in place just a couple days before stating we had to have a signed paper to participate, which you usually only need for the big UCI races. The paper was left at the CC and so we were left to our own devices. Since I hadn't been living at the CC for the last week I didn't know about the new rule. There was also a German team there who wasn't allowed to race becuase they didn't have their paper either.
So that's it for now. Taunya and I are going out to explore some more.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Race report from kremis

The team had a good race this last Friday. The Belgians were up front and ready for whatever they could hit us with. Since our kit is the stars and stripes we all have a big target on our backs every time we show up to a race.
The race was going pretty smooth for the first couple of laps then a good break formed up the road about two and a half laps in. Since my title sponsor Taunya was at the race I was really trying to ride my smartest race. While the break was establishing up the road I found myself on the wheel of a couple guys taking off to bridge to the break. It was a harder effort than what all three of us were planning on though. I was the only one who actually made it on to the tail of the break. I got on and tryed to recover but the Belgians soon noticed an American flag was with them and they ramped it up some more. I hung with them for about a lap. We had a fairly large break and I don't think the big guys liked that. Quite a few guys started getting spit out the back and after that one lap of being with them I was one of those to get spit out. I was surprised at how long it took the main field to come up. Once back in the field I sat in and recovered as best I could but the peloton was finally in chase mode and I was thinking I was going to get worked over again. Luckily I got in a sweet pocket out of the wind and I was fine. The rest of the race for us was a lot of surging and small groups of guys trying to make it up to the break. I went with a couple of them feeling that the pack was slowing too much. If nothing else I figured I could help up the pace enough that the peloton could stay within close range of the break. All in all I guess it worked out. I didn't get anything special as far as placing goes but I sure worked hard for what I got. I got 38th. Heck I was even still in the money. I won a whopping 10 euro. Still beats the pay out back home though. A kremis only costs 8 euro and you even get 5 of that back when you turn your number in after the race. Much better deal than the $30 on up for a crit back home. Have to really hand it to the Belgians on the organization of their races.
I would like to thank my coach JR Smith for all of his help to make all this happen. JR is one heck of a guy and an even better coach. Thanks!
Robert Lofgran

Giro photo gallery #5

Henk Vogels, a real hard man. From what I hear this guy has been racing all over the place the last few weeks. Last week I heard he was hitting some local races in Colorado.
To bad Vino didn't come to the Giro.
Savoldelli getting ready to rock the TT.
Cunego was one who seemed a little stressed. He almost litterally ran to his team bus avoiding all contact with the fans.
Michael Rasmussen. There were guys like Robbie Mcewen who rode pretty standard road bikes with clip on aero bars but Rasmussen rode a standard road bike with no aero bars.

giro photo gallery #4

Taunya and me hanging out at the riders village.
Allessandro Petachi, Mr. Italian style
Ann, who owns the CC with her husband. Then You've got Wesly who's from South Africa. Then good old Derek Timmeraman from Michigan I believe. That's me on the end I guess.
Ivan Basso getting the engine reved up before he heads to the starting house. Focused on being number one. We also saw Bobby J. and Jens Voight put in their TT's.
Illes Balleares. Now these guys had some sick TT bikes.

Giro photo gallery #3

Heres a guy that you could tell was all bussiness. I was pretty surprised he came over to sign this gentlemens jersey next to me. Before this he was walking around the bus taking care of things looking very focused. Just from seeing his demeanor this once I would title him the Ice man. Smooth, calculated, focused and no nonsense.
This is as close as we could manage to get to the starting house. It took us twenty minutes just to get this close. Earlier in the day they let some pretty serious and pumped looking kids race the TT course.
The Keiser! I can honestly say that Jan doesn't seem nearly as a big a guy in person. Jan was actually one of the cooler big names at the race that took time out to sign autographs.
I think this Euskatel rider is Mayo but who nows? All the Basque country boys at their tent looked alike.
Unusually hot and sunny day for Belgium. Just a couple hours earlier the rain came down pretty good but luckily for the fans and riders it passed quickly. There was quite the variety of fans.

Giro photo gallery #2

Giro photo gallery #1

Some of the riders were more willing than others to sign autographs.

Sean Yates chillin before the Disco guys start going off. Nothing but high tech, high priced gear. Normally you have to have a v.i.p. pass to get into the riders village but not this time. What other sport can you get this close to the athletes and their entourage? You have to love this sport.
Mr. Axel Merckx was very fan freindly. He was one of the few to just hang out and talk with the fans. This guys really has class. Axel was one of the most professional acting guys we saw.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Cinco de Mayo!

The last couple of days have been great aditions to my adventure. First of all my awsome little wife Taunya arrived here in Belgium yesterday. That was a great reunion. I picked her up at the Teilt train station not to far from where the CC is and we headed out to start our adventure. Little did we know how soon it would start. The other guys had used "the fun bus" earlier that morning to go grocery shopping and left it with a bone dry gas tank. There aren't gas stations on every corner here like back in the states I had no idea where the closest one was. On top of that we were sent off of what I knew as the shortest route two times by road construction. I was really starting to think we were going to make it back to the house with no problems. Soon I was coasting into the driveway of an old farm house trying to get out of the road. We were in the middle of absolute nowhere on some old farm road. I left Taunya in the van and thought I'd be gone walking for some while. I got lucky though and only a hundred yards down the road I noticed a good sized farm and they had their own gas pump. They hooked me up with about 10 euros worth of diesel and we were back on the road. We lucked out pretty big time. I would have been walking for at least a couple of hours. After that Taunya recieved a small tour of the CC and Bernard the CC owner drove us to nearby Oostkamp to the new place they are building for masters racers and for pro and continental teams to stay during the race season. This is where Taunya and I will be staying until we head back. The place isn't even finished yet and man is it nice place. We have a small apartment type room with all the goods. Heck this place is bigger than the first apartment that we had when we got married. To say the least when they put the final touches on this place this would be the pro cyclists/teams dream stay place.
I've taken that sweet wife of mine around Oostkamp and we've seen some cool stuff. The architecture is somthing to be admired here and it's cool to dream of someday having a sweet euro pad like the ones around here.
Well, it's pretty late and tomorrow we're headed to watch the opening TT of the Giro pretty danged early in the morning so my race report from today will have to wait. Taunya got some good pictures too so you'll have those to check out. All I will say for now is that the race went very well. I'll fill you in tomorrow. Have a good one folks!
Robert Lofran

Monday, May 01, 2006

Flanders Photos #3

That's the last of my Flanders pictures that turned out. It has been pretty cool to be able to watch these races live on tv. This coming up weekend we're going to go watch the Giro prologue in Seraing. My wife gets here on Thursday so that should make it a bit funner too. I'm going to miss not being able to see this stuff live right on the living room tv. Even ran across pro races out on training rides. That sure as heck doesn't happen back home.

Aqueles sao as ultimas de minhas fotos de Flanders. Tem sido muito legal assistir estas corridas vivo na televisao. Este final de semana nos vamos a cidade de Seraing para ver o prologue do Giro de Italia. Minha esposa chega na Quinta entao vai ser legal ver a corrida com ela. Vou sentir falta de poder assistir as corridas grandes na minha propria casa ao vivo. Ate deu para passar algumas corridas professionais enquanto treinando aqui. Aquile certamente nao acontece nos E.U.A.

Flanders Photos #2

Flanders Photos #1

Here are some pictures from the starting of Flanders in Brugge.
The city square was packed and we could barely move but within fifteen minutes it was empty and everything was being dismantled. Talk about orginization.

Estas sao algumas das fotos que tirei na largada da corrida Flanders em Brugge. A quadra inteira do centro da cidade estava cheia mas depois da largada so levou quinze minutos vasar e tudo estava sendo dis feito e limpado. Que oraganizacao!

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Anzegam UCI 1.12 April, 30, 06 - 30 de Abril 06

Yesterday was another cold and windy day in Belgium. I've been sick with a pretty tough head cold for the last week but with me only having a couple more weeks here Bernard (our director) and I figured I at least should give it a go. My legs felt lousy all week and I just felt exhausted but with the adrenaline from the race the legs were actually feeling like they were coming around. The race was just like any other here I guess. It was a loop of about 17km with 11 laps. About 14 corners and nothing I would consider a climb back home but quite a few good length rollers that at the speed we were taking them at sure felt like climbs. I did alright staying up towards the front during the early part of the race whitch was good because being sick I just wasn't feeling like I could recover from the hard efforts. Ther were alot of retarded crashes going on all the time it seemed like. I guess thats just how it goes when you'r all going that hard with that kind of wind. People would be echeloned out across the road and strung out and in the gutter and sure enough up ahead of you, you would see someone take it into the gutter just a little to far and take a nose dive into the ditch. We had one pretty good descent on the course and one guy went off into the ditch so hard I thought for sure he was going to be hurt bad. He got right back up though. I guess the fresh manure in the farmers feild padded his fall pretty well but he sure didn't look to pretty afterwords. Luckily I never got close enough to see if he smelled as crappy as he looked. There were a good handfull of other crashes too besides the gutter spills. One good sized pile up in the middle of the pack and then I don't know what happened but the guy right in front of me bumped someone hard and came unclipped and I ran right over his foot. He stayed right side up though and luckily so did I. I hope I didn't hurt his foot. Lap after lap I could feel that my recovery time was taking longer and longer. Then we got word that the break of about fifteen that had gone on the first lap was back to only about a minute up the road. That of got some teams motivated to get organized on the front and the pace picked up even more. On the rollers I was slowly getting shuffled back and I was having a tough time. Like always guys started getting spit out the back. Unfortunatly I was now close enough to see this. I was really starting to go into my red zone by now. Then out of the blue I'm sitting probably in the last 15 or so of the peloton strung out in the gutter. We came to a section where there were some metal posts on the course that would normally split the road from a bike path but of course we were using the road and the bike path. The race organizers had some cones leading up to these posts but with how hard we where going and being strung out the way we were I guess the guys in front of me didn't see them coming in time. The guy right in front of me hit the large cone hard and went swinging out across the road in front of me. I had to swing way wide to get around him. The guy right behind me wasn't quite as quick to respond and he continued straight and hit the posts and went down taking a couple others with him. Having had been so close to the back though I was gapped off from the peloton pretty good after that and the team cars started passing me. I bounced back and forth through the caravan moving up then back then up again for a whole lap. A couple of times I was discustingly close to getting back in the pack. Then of course a turn would come and I'd get gapped in there by team cars. When I finally couldn't handle the surges of the cars anymore and they all passed me I just time trialed it for another lap. I picked up one of my teammates who was sitting up and had him just sit on me while I time trialed it. I was pretty irritated at how close we were staying to the back of the caravan and not being able to get on. Of course I soon ran out of gas and that was it. In the end out of well over a hundred starters there was only a group of about 35 still in the race. The wind and crashes had taken there toll. And now a day later I'm back to fighting this cold. Luckily today is a rest day. Thanks for reading!
Robert Lofgran

Ontem foi mais um dia de vento forte e frio. Tenho sido gripado a semana inteira mas nosso diretor Bernard queria que eu corresse ainda assim sendo que eu so tenho mais duas semanas aqui. Entao decidi ir e ver como iria. Minhas pernas sentiram pesados e nao bem a semana intiera mas quando a corrida comecou aquela energia da corrida ajudou elas sentir um pouco melhor. A corrida era como qualquer outro aqui. Tinha 11 voltas de 17km. Cada volta tinha 14 esquinas. Nao tinha o que eu realments chamaria subidas de verdade na corrida mas tinha bastante morros entao o caminho estava sempre rollando. Ainda assim estando gripado eu fiz bem ficando pela frente. So tinha problemas recuperando dos constante pulas de velocidade. Cada volta deu para sentir que estava ficando mais e mais dificil recuperar dos esforsos. Tinha muitas caidas na corrida tambem. Caidas estupidos tambem. Com a velocidade e o vento todo mundo estava tendo que fazer esfrosos no seus limites. Sendo que todo mundo estava ficand linhado e quase nao mais tinha um groupo tinha muitos que ficaram tao perto do lado da rua que derepente ficariam perto de mais e o pneu da frente tocaria na grama e eles iam caindo ao lado da rua e caindo nas trevas que linham as. Tinha muitas caidas assim. Tambem tinha uma grande caida de muitos corredores no meio do groupo por razao nenhuma. Depois de um tempao ouvimos no radio que o groupo de quinze que fugirem na primeira volta estava ficando perto de novo. Entao alguns euipes se orginizarem na frente e a velocidade da corrida pulou ainda mais. Eu ja nao estava sentindo bem. Devagamente eu comecei a descer no groupo ate que nao estava mais perto da frente. Eu nao fiquei muito preoccupado sabendo que logo teria um chance para subir ao frente de novo. Mas logo entremos numa secao da corrida com vento vindo do lado forte. Estavamos linhado atras do groupo. Tinha neste secao algumas barras que estavam na rua que normalmente bloceavam a rua normal de uma pista de bicicleta ao lado da rua. Os organizadores da corrida tinham coisas nu rua antes destas barras para avertir nos. Entremos la e o cara bem em frente de mim bateu numa dessas coisas. Eu virei para minha esquerda e de algum jeito nao bati nele. Mas o cara atras de mim bateu nestas barras tambem e levou various outros com ele. Infelizmente estendo perto do final do groupo eu ja estave atras do groupo. Eu andei na caravana por uma volta lutando a chegar no groupo de novo. Eu fiquei tao perto algumas vezes que aindo nao acreditou que nao consigui. Depois de uma volta fazendo isso eu finalmente fui passado pelo ultimo carro na caravana. Eu contiunuei andando fazendo meu propria corrida de contra relogio e logo pegei um membro de meu equipe que tinha saido do groupo. Ele nao parecia bem e ficou atras na minha roda e e continuei indo com forca. estavamos aindo tao perto ao final da caravana mas nao estavamos consigindo pegal-la. Finalmente eu nao tinha mais nada e ja era. Entao aquilo e a corrida.
Obrigado por lendo amigos. Espero que gostarem. Espero que vao gostar de meu novo site. Vou fazer meu melhor ter muitos novidades sempre aqui por voces de minhas corridas e vida em geral.
Se cuida Brasil!
Robert Lofgran