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First aid

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CA coaches now all need a first aid certificate

Those of you reading this who aren't involved in coaching may still be interested.

As of late last year, CA came out with a policy that all coaches need to have a first aid qualification (and it has to be up to date!).  This is being phased in, any new coach or new qualification sought by a coach as of Jan 2010 has to have a ticket, and as of Jan 2011, we all have to have it.

I think this is a good thing.  I've also had first aid qualifications since I was 13 years old (surf lifesaving as a nipper and then as a senior).  However, my surf bronze hasn't been requalified since some time in the mid 1990s so it's lapsed and my PADI diving first aid qualifiation, while it never expires, is not worth the paper it's printed on.  Seriously, the PADI 'medic first aid' ticket was self assessed(!) and never expires.  They've changed that now but back when I worked as a dive master (late 1990's and early 2000's) that was their course.  How they (PADI) got away with it I don't know .. But there you go .. I've had many opportunities to practice first aid, most memorable was during(!) my first Warny, where myself and the other bloke I was riding (we weren't racing, we just wanted to get to the finish!) with, about 30km from Warnambool, had a car crash happen right in front of us.  Muggins here took over and got the injured people stable and comfortable until the ambulance arrived, handed over to the pros and then we jumped back on our bikes and finished the race!  heh ...

So, I had to get a new first aid ticket.  Ok ... Time consuming (and time is, for those of you that know me, the one thing I don't have a lot of to spare!).  I went a googling and found this : The Red Cross do an online course.  Alarm bells ringing?  First aid online?  How? There's a fair chunk of theory work which works pretty well online with a few multiple choice tests along the way.  Then there's a practical assessment of CPR and I expect a few other bits and pieces that I'll write about when I've done it.  The online theory bit is pretty good - it's quite thorough. A few things have changed since I last did any real first aid training, mainly CPR practice has gone from 60bpm compressions to 100bpm compressions and some snake and spider bite things have changed.  The Red Cross course doesn't teach two-person CPR like we learned in surf lifesaving, but that may be because it's too hard to co-ordinate when you don't necessarily know the skill level of your co-first-aider where we certainly did know it in surf lifesaving.  We did hours and hours of practice as kids.  Some things, like times tables, you just never forget.  15:2, 5:1, 60bpm ... repeat .. Well, now it's 30:2, 5:1 is gone and the cadence is up to 100bpm.  No worries.

Anyway, to cut a long story short, I've done the online part of the course and will get the practical part of it done in a week or so. It's pretty good.  Cost $150, you can do the theory component in your 'spare' time from anywhere where you can get access to a web browser and the information is good.



Waiting for the videos ...

A brief post CTC/SSS round 4 writeup

I'm waiting on an update to my video editing software (PowerDirector 8.0, in case anyone's interested) to resolve an uploading to YouTube issue, so have a few moments to kill between editing videos for the sprint round last weekend.

I'd like to write a big report for the club teams championships last Saturday and the sprint round on Sunday, but this will be a very brief one.

CTC, a team of three of us, myself, Dino and Russell Poole are the Blackburn 'Open Masters' No.1 team.  I'm the first rider, Dino is No.2 and Pooley is our third after the Wizard couldn't commit.  We did ok, the event was a bit of a mess, no starting gates(!) and no split timing etc, but it was the same for everyone (except we'd spent a lot of time practicing gate starts!).  We ended up qualifying fourth so we just scraped into the final, to race off for 3rd place against Hawthorn's team of The V-Train, Aaron and some other guy who's name I don't know.  They'd qualified about four seconds faster than us, so we were never going to be in it,  but we went a little faster and they went a little slower but it was still three seconds too much, so we had to settle for fourth place.  Better than last year, so that's good ...

Round 4, I did my best flying 200 for the season, but still too slow, on a perfect day, I should, in hindsight, have used a bigger gear than 91.8", I'd felt strong during the week and probably would have done better on 94" or so, but it is what it is and 13.6s would have to do.  B grade was big, 10 of us, and I was one of the slower ones in qualifying. 

A very long story cut short, I beat Craig Towers, Ed Osbourne drilled me a new one, and Stewart Lucy took advantage of a huge tactical blunder on my part to win easily too, so not the best day's racing for me!  Still a lot of fun and the series continues to get good feedback.  There's a crew over in South Africa that want to copy the format and some in NSW as well, so that's very pleasing.  Our dream of a national series is gaining some momentum!  Jodie Dundas did a great job on the video camera, Lucie took ace photos and Sue ran the day like clockwork.  We got help from Will Thomas on the scoring duties as Anne Apolito was unavailable.

In other news, Emily teamed up with Caitlin Ward to roll the JW17 club team sprint by 2 seconds, quick kid, that Emily ... more medals for Dino to find homes for!  Thanks to the Thomas's and Bev for looking after Em on the day.

And if you haven't heard (get out from under the rock!) Mike Goldie from Carnegie-Caulfield was hurt in a low speed tumble at a training session at DISC last week,  from all of us we wish him a speedy and uncomplicated recovery.


Watt? Woot!

A new PB last night on the Powertap, and a crash of sorts

Yesterday morning Dino and I trained standing starts at Blackburn.  We did a warmup, then 6 x ~80m starts.  A good session, Dino improved his starts quite a lot.

I've still got this damn cold, which is filling my head with fluff and my ears with cotton, not to mention reduced breathing ability, so it's strictly short, high intensity stuff at the very anerobic end of the scale.  I simply can't breathe enough for anything longer than around 20 seconds or so.

In the evening, we trooped along to Brad's Blackburn session.  I did a very truncated and weak warmup (breathing ... not good!) but did 3 accelerations as part of it, and hit a new PB on the power meter in the process.  1567 watts.  That's a new PB by about 60 watts.  Surprising, but I'm not complaining!

We then did some motorpaced jumps, my first one went ok, the second and I just couldn't breathe enough to hold the wheel of the motorbike, so it was pretty feeble.

After that, we did a couple more standing starts, 1/2 laps (around 150m at Blackburn).  My first one was good, on the second, I pulled back hard with 1 to go and Viv wasn't holding the brake hard enough, which allowed my bike to come out of the gate, and over I go!  I got a bit cranky about it (not to anyone there, just inside) and did one more, and hit 203 nm of torque.  Motivation ...

If I can throw this cold off, I'll be in good stead for round 3.


Log off!

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Or, log over .. or log! It's log .. watch out for the log!

After yesterday's fun ride at Blackburn's track racing, where I had a bit of a fun time pushing a very large gear and Krissy Dundas smoked the field in her 3 lap sprint (go Krissy!), Rich and I headed off to the You Yangs with our MTB's for some fun this morning.  The plan was to ride a few trails for a couple of hours.  We did, and it was pretty good fun.  Some steep climbs, some descents that were way too much for my wuss MTB skills, and some scoops, jumps etc ... Mostly the green trails were really good for our gumby-level skills, we both had to walk a couple of times on some of the steeper stuff, but we're wusses anyway ...

We started off at a carpark outside the park, rode up 'lumberjack trail' from Kurrajong to the Stockyard area, rode the green stockyards loop, then went back down the hill to Kurrajong.  Almost all the way home, I'm pretty tired (lazy sprinter, not good at this enduro stuff any more!), there's a little log over the trail on a slight downhill (fast!) section, it's only 20cm or so, a baby... Rich has already gone over it, I decide to bunnyhop it, but don't time the jump right and hit it  somehow, and whoop!  Over we go ... I think I landed headfirst, but I rolled with the crash and didn't do much in the way of visable damage to the helmet. It'll get replaced, it did hit the dirt, it's scratched up pretty well.  I'm not sure how fast I was going?  Maybe 35km/h?  Not enough to be a big issue, no bones broken or anything, but a decent graze on my left arm and leg.  Mefix time!

It was a good fun day, the crash notwithstanding, and we'll be back.  The lower trails we rode would be ace fun at night, and in Rich's Golf it's only about 90 mins from aboc HQ when the traffic is quiet, and his car runs on the scent of an oily rag, so it's not an expensive trip.


How lucky we are?

After a stunning piece of driving in Sydney, it's time to reflect on riding in Melbourne, human nature and why bikes are good for everyone

I'm sure many of you will have heard about the crazy in Sydney who harrassed and then caused a multi-bike pileup in Sydney this morning.  If not, you can read about it here.

There's an old argument that pops up every now and then concerning cyclists and the use of the roads, and where it's appropriate, where it isn't, and how dangerous it is.  The above incident needs to be taken in perspective.  Immediate knee-jerk reactions abound, from the car-obsessed 'all cyclists off the road, get outta my way!', with the borderline psychotics writing things like 'I am sorry, but i HATE CYCLISTS ON THE ROAD. pain in the butt. i totally see where that guy was coming from, i just dont have the guts to run them down. good on him.' (sic) courtesy of a certain individual who hides behind the pseudonym 'Laurabot'.  There's some classy people out there, that's for sure.  These reactions, and the lighting up of the responses in various newspapers, from the bogan-news to more considered papers, show that to many, cyclists and road use is a hot topic.

Why is this? And why does it seem to be happening more often?

An obvious answer is that traffic density is higher and our road system can't cope.  There's an element of truth to that, for sure.   The irony being that those that complain about cyclists on 'their' roads are missing the point that they (the car users) are the problem.  There's too many people driving.  Take a look at the Eastern Freeway or the South Eastern, both roads are off-limits to cyclists, but they're clogged all the way.  More freeways just means more people encouraged to drive, and that just makes the problem worse.  The funny thing is that bikes and bikes used as transport are part of the solution to this.  Bikes used as recreation and sport are also part of the solution.  Bikes take less space on the roads, in urban environments bikes are often faster than cars to get from one place to another (so who is holding up who here?).  Bikes are greener (not perfect, but orders of magnitude less environmentally destructive than car use), bikes keep people healthier, and if 20% of the people who drove cars rode bikes to where they're going, the rest of the car-behooven would have an easier time of it, even if the bikes swamped the road system.  Bikes take up way less room on the roads.  The space used by one car is a whole lane, in that space two or three bikes can safely ride side by side, flowing along.  The car has, usually, one person in it.  It's nuts. Where the drivers get 'ragey' is in high density areas where they're not going anywhere fast, and cyclists, who are doing the drivers a favour, sometimes receive abuse for their troubles.

Funny animals, people.

Oil today, $123/barrel.  How much longer will these people be driving their cars anyway?

More fun, if the 50 bikes that were knocked over were ridden by mostly elite level riders, they'll probably be averaging around $5,000 per bike.  If 50% of them are badly damaged, that's going to cost our hero something in the vicinity of $125,000.  I doubt that'll be covered by insurance.  Maybe he'll have to sell his house to pay for the damage?

I'm going to write an article on bike paths and their merits, or rather, why I think they're bad in many cases and can make things more risky for those of us that ride for transport - watch this space.  In the mean time, remember we have a right to use our roads, take the lane and be assertive.




Get well Mal

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Mal Sawford from CCCC was in a collision with a car

Mal Sawford, who is the president of Carnegie-Caulfield and an amazingly dedicated racer and race and club and regional/combine organiser, cycling journalist for Cycling News and more was involved in a collision with a car on a training ride this week.  He's got a few broken bones and will be off the bike for quite some time.  On behalf of everyone at aboc I wish Mal a speedy recovery.  Get well soon, Mal.


Back on the bike!

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After watching Liz Randall's hour record and then Graham Obree (DVD ...), I had to get back on my bike

It's been over a week, I don't really count Saturday's abortive attempt, but I got back on the roady last night and managed a (soft!) 30 min 150watt session without much pain, and today I rode to work.  Not 100% by any stretch, but at least I can get on a roady and hold position without too much pain.

I managed to ride to work too, but the ride home was pretty umcomfortable.  Seated pedaling is ok, standing (take off from lights etc), not so much ...



Mefix works!

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It's been a week now, and most of my skin has grown back

Apart from the much deeper abrasions on my left elbow and knee which are still oozing and gooey, I took off the mefix from my other bits of roadrash this morning and have fresh new skin.  Mefix works a charm.  I expect the deeper abrasions will take another few days at least, they were deep grazes, concrete has some considerable grinding power! I think it's safe to say that the roadrash guide works.

Round 3 of the TSSS is this Sunday.  Liz Randall's hour attempt is tonight.  Work's crazy (got to get most of the old Vivitec websites moved to my server by the end of this week!).  The Fuel EX8 should arrive at the shop this week too. Got to also fix Vander's MTB after it fell off his roof on the w'end. Busy times!


Too early!

I tried to race yesterday, but should have stayed home

In hindsight, trying to race the Blackburn races yesterday was ambitious at best.  I did feel ok in the morning, could breathe reasonably well and I got my first good night's sleep in a week.  Aggregate points on offer ... and a desire not to let an injury beat me conspired to motivate me to have a go.  I'd also just (finally!) fitted the new cranks to the T1 and wanted to give them a try.  I've gone from 165mm to 170mm cranks (my road cranks are 172.5mm) and I figured keeping them close would be of some benefit.

I slapped the T1 on the tow bike and rode to the velodrome, felt ok on the 7.2FX, and arrived feeling fine.  Even a little strong, which was odd, after a week of absolutely no riding at all and a lot of work and an injury.  I paid my entry, said hi to the crew (Dino, Rob, Nath, Mick, Will, Emily et al) and did a bit of a warmup. I was in some doubt as to whether I'd be able to hold myself up in the drops, it's quite an aggresive position, but I felt ok.  Rolled around, this isn't too bad.  I might be able to race.  Did one effort laying off the back of the motorbike ... not so strong ... did one out of the saddle kick, and nuh ... instant pain.  Ok, I'll start each race, get my points and go home. 

Scratch race - watched A grade contend with The V-Train, and Bazz "The Wizard" did a great job of organising his leadout to take a close win over The Master, Jamie and the V-Train. Our turn in B, and I warn Dino not to follow my wheel.  I held on for the first 5 laps, did a 2 lap turn to keep a tempo going, then when a kick happened, I simply had nothing and it hurt too much to push.  DNF.

Next we had a 6 lap h'cap, I started, asked not to be pushed, and simply rode up the bank and out.  Ribs getting worse.  Getting over the fence, painful!

Last, a motorpace.  I think I got on for one lap, but again, too much pain.  Pull out, grovel over the fence and get a lift home with Lucie.  I didn't have the will to do the all-in, for which I'm very sorry - normally I'm a stalwart of it (it's a great way to finish the day and encourage a sense of community amongst the club riders) but it was just too hard. I left the tow bike and the T1 at the clubrooms and will pick them up this week.

It was a good day's racing for the club - 11 A grade riders, 5 (or 6, if you count me, which is iffy at best!) in B, 8 or so in C, lots in D and the kids grades were full too, a very healthy field and some really good, close racing.  Nath showed off his new wheels, Emily's coping with her move from F to E grade well (be patient, Em, you'll get there), Dino rode well but got cruelly dealt with in the motorpace, Rob made a few tactical errors but learnt a lot, and young Will Thomas rode very well indeed in C grade.

The plan was to go up to Bonnie Doon after racing, but I was too sore to sit in a car for 2 hours, so we got takeaway and stayed home and got a bottle of champers to watch the election, celebrated the demise of the evil man and the Greedy Party at long last. Hopefully Rudd will deliver some real action on climate change and not take us to war because Uncle Sam says so.

I'm going to try and get in to DISC tomorrow night to cheer on Liz Randall as she tries to set a new world time for the hour for her age.  Might warm up with watching The Flying Scotsman, which I now have a copy of, and set up a roady on a trainer so I can do some medium intensity stuff off the road while my ribs heal.


'tis the season!

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For crashes, it seems ...

My housemate and fellow aboc'er, Vanders, writes today :


I'm 100% ok
Unlike my front wheel

So anyway are car pulled out on me as I was going up the 1-in-20, and we

collided at about 20km/h


He just needs a new wheel. Lucky, lucky bastard!


3 days post crash, and my skin is healing fine and I'm very fetching in my mefix and white fishnet bandages, but mum, it still hurts to breathe!  Thankyou to Bev and Vanders for being my gofers while I'm stuck at home.  Last time I damaged ribs was back in my ice hockey days, when I went to check a bloke into the boards at the Oakleigh rink and missed, and that took around 2 weeks before I was comfortable enough to do normal things.  I expect this will be around the same.

Being right handed (mostly) and being unable to twist to the right does make some basic activities rather more difficult than I'd like - let's just say that the application of toilet paper is now a challenge and it's maybe a good thing that codeine is a bit of a constipator.   Enough detail?  Is the "too much information" light in the corner of your eye blinking at you? I thought so ... heh!



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