America's #1 Balance Bike Destination

America's #1 Balance Bike Destination
America's #1 Balance Bike Destination

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Hello from our new home: San Diego

I often forget for long stretches of time that I have this blog. So I just remembered. FaceBook seems to have really killed blog readership. Maybe I'm incorrect. So lots of change for me in the past 12 months. We sold our real estate in Rhode Island, I quit my job in interior construction, we grew our business large enough support our family, and we moved to Sunny-D. Things are exactly as we planned, so we're feeling very blessed. I'm training and trying to race more than ever, although the bar is set quite high here in SoCal so I need to improve my game on the bike a bit. I'm also in my 45th year so there's this heightened sense of urgency to really over-perform and happify my ego. Truth be told, I am in the nasty habit of looking at bike riding as work, because every ride is a pre-calculated means to either inflict the correct amount of controlled inflammation, or a way to recover from it. Without purpose- I hate to admit it- bike riding is about a little bit boring to me. Lately I've even been opting out of riding on the road- even on a spectacular sunny day- in favor of a 90 minute session of specific training on the turbo or the rollers. Workouts are so much more successful, condensed, and efficient when you're indoors. Out on the dangerous roads, there are too many distractions, stop lights and hills, in addition to the possibility of being killed by an errant driver. So I prefer to limit my "fun" rides to going to the nearby canyon on my fatbike or mountain bike and enjoying the peace and quiet away from the rat race of SoCal roads. It's nice to hear the crunchy sound of dirt and gravel being crushed under my tires, like riding through Grape Nuts cereal. Sometimes it's hard packed and silent, and I welcome the occasional washout of sand or gravel to test my connection to the surface.. force me to shift my weight and threaten my control of the machine. These fun rides are not without a purpose though. They help clear the mind and usually make for a nice recovery day to shake off the previous day's racing or intervals. So here I am, in America's Mecca of cycling and racing year-round, and all I care about is making sure the correct amount of suffering, TSS, intervals and recovery are in the mixing bowl, so that maybe I'll have the perfect amount of form, speed and luck to be the answer to the most asked question in racing: "Who won?". That's my motivation to train, but if it were possible to substitute racing for training every day, I'd do it. Racing is the best kind of training. Thanks for reading!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Just checking in..

Hi readers. Some quick updates to assure you that I still draw breath and still pedal a bike! Here are the highlights of my 2013 to date:
1. Training camp in Florida- went solo this year and banged out 455 miles in six days of riding.
2. Delray Beach Granfondo- included in the above mileage was a 100km granfondo in which I narrowly escaped with all of my skin (3 big crashes), finished about 30th out of 600 starters, and beat Nelson Vails to the line.
3. Delray Beach Criterium PRO RACES- watched the men and ladies light it up in the dark the evening after the above granfondo. My mom was with me and also enjoyed the thrilling speed of the closed course.
4. Delray Beach Amateur Crit- Held in an industrial park near the Delray Pro Crit, this was a good test of my tired legs, and gave me confidence after I finished the 40+ race without blowing up, where it was fast enough that there were 10 DNFs.. 12th out of 16 finishers, I'll take it, in March.. in Florida.. The Pro-1-2 race afterwards was just too much though.. I sat up after 5 screaming fast laps..
5. Chris Hinds Criterium- my 2nd test of the season, on the weekend after returning from Florida. Tons of fatigue in the legs.. I felt confident and bridged into the winning break after burning an entire book of matches in one lap. The occupants of said break did not show any desire to let me slack off for a couple of laps, and I was spit out after one lap going 28-29 mph. Just didn't have it, though I'm sure they slowed down after I was gone. At the end, I won the field sprint for 8th.. after a lot of hard work at the front and it was nice to show the family that I had good legs (the sprinting kind, not the time trialling kind).
6. Teaching SPINNING class at the Kent County YMCA 2x/week, all full classes, and really enjoying it as my riders get engaged in the power data aspect of the spin bikes. I have them paying very close attention to the average power they achieve for various durations, and hopefully have given them a golden ticket to avoiding the 'junk miles' so prevalent in the SPINNING world, where people go and thrash themselves for an hour without any goal or purpose, make themselves tired and fail to force any adaptation. The power aspect of my classes adds a whole new measurable dimension that keeps people interested and working hard to improve.
6. Now it's April and my last few difficult rides are extremely encouraging. The data is what it is, it is abundantly clear that I am now coming into very good form. I need to reign myself in a bit because it's too early for any kind of peak. I won't crack 100TSS/day until early June, but maybe I should slow that down as well.. I want to be FLYING in August, not JUNE!
I'm picking and choosing the races I care about though, and avoiding the waste of time, money and energy on races I do not care about, just for the sake of racing. My targeted "A"events for the year are going to be: Concord, Exeter, Chris Thater and Portsmouth, among a few others.. All late season stuff. Not a whole lot going on in May/June, other than a lot of crits in New Britain, maybe I'll race Prospect Park once or twice in July..
Really looking forward to temps in the 70s, if it ever happens. Today I went out for a late ride and by the time I got home it was in the low 40s. Thanks for reading.

Monday, January 14, 2013

No base mileage records will be broken in 2013

I say that now, but the temptation to pour on the mileage is strong. From experience I've learned that it's best for me if I increase volume gradually week over week.. and beginning with this week, I've got about 100 miles logged, which includes a one hour Spinning class that I teach every Saturday morning. In a few weeks I'll also begin teaching a Tuesday night class. My plan for the next three months:
-Mondays 60-90 minutes recovery/endurance riding plus some weightlifting.
-Tuesdays 60-90 minutes with 20-30 minutes of specific high-end drills, Spinning class in the evening followed by some [upper body] weightlifting.
-Wednesdays a longer 150-200 minutes endurance ride with 30-40 minutes of tempo
-Thursdays 60-90 minutes with 20-30 minutes of specific high end drills
-Fridays either 60-90 minutes recovery/endurance, some fun riding with my son, or even a day off is fine and dandy.
-Saturdays Spinning class in the morning followed by some weightlifting
-Sundays another long 3-4 hour ride with a variety of intensities as the mood strikes or the terrain dictates.
It's a rough outline, not too different from what I've been doing for a few years. I'll be keeping a close eye on CTL and gradually work my way up towards 100/day by early April.
Now that I've put this out there, I own it and will make it happen. Success is easier when you at least know what you want to do.

Friday, December 21, 2012

new beginnings

I'm a little bit sick of Facebook. It used to be that a lot of cool people I respected would come here and read my stuff and leave comments.. I miss that. Facebook has sort of hijacked the blogging world, but I'd like to keep trying to contribute here. Thanks for not giving up on me, even though I've obviously been quite the slacker. Some extremely exciting things are happening in my life, and I'd rather share them here than on Facebook. Please stay tuned..

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Balance Bike Buyer's Guide

You could buy an unsafe low end knock-off, or you can show the same care and concern about safety and quality as you do for your own bikes. If a Fizik Arione saddle is worth $150, then so is a top quality balance bike for a 2-5 year old kid. 
Read more about what constitutes a safe balance bike. 

Tuesday, April 03, 2012


Well I just reopened the blog to readers. Sometimes I like to shut it down- like during periods when I'm interviewing for a job opportunity. Sorry about that! I now have a new gig in Avon CT, so if you all have any good pointers for where/when to train in that area, I'm all ears. Aside from a Wed and a Sunday road ride, I am teaching two SPINNING classes a week at the Kent County YMCA.

Friday, February 03, 2012

Training Camp

Been down here in south Florida all week, and having a great time riding my ass off. Five days of riding so far and 231 miles. I'm very pleased because I've banked enough base miles in the basement back in New England that I can go out and do lots of FT work without any overuse issues. It's been great. The bike I rented fits like a glove, luckily- the seat is at it's highest point- it's a LOOK 595 and I've really connected with this bike. Brought my Powertap wheel down with me and the workouts have been successful and free of structural pain. I even did a 60 miler the other day in less than 3 hours. Of course the roads are pancake flat, but my rides are all out and back and it's very windy down here. I am expecting to top off 300 + miles in the next couple of days, but it's okay if I fall short by a little bit. I'll be going into February ready to do some more specific LT work and start on some zone 5 stuff too. looking forward to a really awesome 2012 racing season!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

3 days straight

It's a good start. Three consecutive days of riding. The weather has been nice, making it a good opportunity to really enjoy myself. Today I'll try for a 4th day and maybe crack 2 hours (easy)

There's some exciting stuff happening over at Almost everything's on sale, including the new FirstBIKE.
It helps pay the bills, so if you're smitten with something over there, please take a chance. You won't regret it. If you're a New Englander, you are spending your money locally and will probably receive your stuff the next business day. To those of you who have been my loyal repeat customers: XOXO.
Thanks so much.

Monday, November 14, 2011


Taking all this time off from riding, training and racing was the worst mistake ever. I do not feel refreshed. I feel fat, bloated, slow and unathletic. Way to let 3 contiguous seasons of form disintegrate! Phuck.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Update time

So I've been off the blog radar for a bit here.. A lot of stuff happening, but none of it includes any riding, unfortunately. I haven't taken a break this long in two seasons I think. One interesting thing that happens when you stop riding- I HAVE SOME FUCKING ENERGY TO DO OTHER THINGS! also, removing the training load completely has helped me to SLEEP AT NIGHT MORE DEEPLY AND FOR LONGER PERIODS! I still wake up occasionally from the lower back pain, but it's not as often. Plus I am waking up feeling a lot more rested. Soon though, I will go out for an easy ride and then get all wrapped around that axle all over again and proclaim that my 2012 road season begins in October etc etc etc..
Cyclocross-wise, I've been laying low. The MRI taken earlier this year proved that I have two bulging disks causing me such great agony from all the running and jumping, and tree roots and other trauma that cyclocross inflicts. It definitely AGES you more than road racing, of this I am sure. So once I find a cross bike to use, I may like to race Canton and NBX at Goddard. But that's probably it. It will take some pain-killers to get through those I guess, but hey at least I have an excuse for being slow in cross.
WeeBIKE is growing nicely. We picked up a European brand of balance bike and we're contracted to be the exclusive US importer. Lots of potential there for us, we feel very blessed and I pray that we don't blow it. Still selling merino wool, still selling a bunch of different brands of balance bike at We also picked up some new brands to sell as authorized dealers, including FirstBIKE, FootBIKE, FUJI, UVEX and Louis Garneau. So we're excited about the growth. Every day we're getting closer to the time when I can walk away from the construction industry forever. It has aged me more than anything else in my life, it very likely contributed to my father's illness and death, and I've just plain had enough of it.
Our little company sponsored a couple of new teams this year: the Boston Bicycle School and Velocite. We continue to sponsor and manage WeeBIKE-Hasyun Racing and maybe we'll add another team to the WeeBIKE family, who knows? Our team won a few races this year, we podiumed quite a few times too, and I'm proud of that. We have both the NE Regional Masters Criterium Champion, and your hero won the NEMCA rankings for his age group as well. We had a good year.
It's been rumored that we might be opening a retail children's bike boutique, and there's some truth to this  idea. We are looking for some retail space where this could be successful. The idea is to have basically every brand of balance bike in a showroom, offered together with kid's helmets, apparel, gloves, and other kid-friendly cycling accessories. Sounds good on paper, but will it work? My thinking is that since we will inevitably be forced to rent storage space for our FirstBIKE inventory, it may as well be a location with a storefront. Seems like a no-brainer.
Thanks for reading. Maybe I'll see some of you at Canton Cross.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

2011 Chris Thater Criterium 35+ results

Not my dream result (19th) but a small stacked field makes this race extremely hard to even complete. To wit, there were about 45-50 starters. I've had my doors blown off at this race two times before and for once I finished it and got some cash too- it pays $2000 twenty deep. After what happened in the 2/3 race which followed, I am doubting I will ever go back. Kind of a long story and I've already driven 700 miles today so it will have to wait.
Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

Monday, August 08, 2011

2011 Concord Criterium 35+ Photos

Many thanks to the shooter for sharing these pictures (click title to go there). This one is my favorite:
We put a lot of trust in our rubber at this corner.