2015 REV Cycling Climbing Challenges

I offer you parallel climbing challenges for 2015.
1.  CLIMB 1,000,000 feet.  
The goal should be to do it in the fewest amount of miles.  We all know if we go out for a 50 mile ride with 5,000 feet of gain that it is considered a good hard ride but a century with 5,000 feet of gain is fairly easy.  
Your challenge is  10K/1M  in other words 10,000 miles with 1,000,000 feet of gain.  
I expect only a handful of riders on our team will be able to accomplish this challenge.  It is a serious undertaking.  
Simple math 365 days — ¬†2,740 feet of gain per day. ¬†Miss one day and you need 5,480 feet to catch up!
2014 Honor Roll 
Lori Hoechlin
Sol Manion
Congratulations to you both!
2.  CLIMB 500,000 feet
Because REV Cycling is a development team I will also offer a challenge for the development riders on the team.  Your challenge is to climb 500,000 feet in 5,000 miles or fewer.  
NEW FOR 2015
Peak Bagging Рis a term used to describe hikers and mountaineers that go out to collect as many summits as they can for sport.  We are going to borrow the term for our climbing challenge.  
The REV Cycling Climbing Challenge for 2015 is to bag as many summits in California and United States as possible.  Only one ascent of each of climb will count towards your point total.  Your point total will be determined by adding up all your climbs using the  difficulty rating assigned to each climb for a total value e.g. 
The Bear (the toughest climb in California) has difficulty rating of 5.56 (4,851 gain in 8.8 miles)
Palomar Mountain ranked 11th in California has a difficulty rating of 3.45  (4,731 gain 13.2 miles)
Bag those two climbs and you have accumulated 9.01 points!  
The difficulty rating for each climb along with elevation gain and miles are listed on the images of the spreadsheet  I have attached to this post.
My recommendation is get the list print it out and tick them off as you go along.  You are on the honor system.  
I have included the rest of the United States so that our team members spread out across the country can compete in the challenge.  
In my Utopian fantasy rosy-colored glasses world I see REV Cycling team members opening up their homes and hosting team members wishing to visit different parts of the country and going climbing together.  What could be better than suffering on a mountain climb discovering new roads and making new deep and lasting friendships?
I would like to have your point totals at least monthly so riders can see how they are doing throughout the year.
Thank you to Paul Sims for his assistance in creating the spreadsheets!
Happy climbing!

My Tommasini Tecno


I have been riding this bike quite extensively and it occurred to me that I haven’t made a post on my Tommasini Tecno in some time. ¬†This is a fantastic riding bike. ¬†I strongly believe the steel fork makes all the difference when riding a steel bike. ¬†You MUST experience the difference of riding a steel fork again. ¬†Disclaimer: I am an authorized Tommasini dealer if you care to purchase one please contact me at revcycling@gmail.com

Ritchey Road Logic 2.0 Product Review – Initial Impressions


A much more detailed report will follow. ¬†But in the meantime, I honestly can’t figure out what all the hype about carbon bikes is all about. ¬†Having ridden this bike almost 500 miles in varied road conditions i.e. smooth pavement, rough pavement, dirt and gravel, it escapes me why someone needs to spend $5,000 on a carbon bicycle frame! This is a FANTASTIC riding steel bicycle frame at a great and affordable price! ¬†MSRP is $1,049.95

I have often told my customers that I can tell if I’m going to like or be impressed by a bike in the first 10 pedals strokes out of my driveway. ¬†It’s the same with saddles, wheels, tires you name it. ¬†But I know some of you out there want to see a longer evaluation period so I will continue to ride and enjoy this bike. ¬†I will report back after I have reached a certain mileage milestone. ¬†Tomorrow is a very big riding day and I am excited to spend my day on the Ritchey Road Logic 2.0!

The crew is assembled for the 308


In the eleventh hour Alin has stepped up and volunteered to crew for team Hutton’s Vireo. ¬†Thank you in advance for your selfless dedication and devotion to getting us to the finish line!

The 308 is almost exactly 2 months since I was cleared to ride from my broken hip back in January 2014. ¬†I am blessed to have Alin returning as my crew chief. ¬†I am doubly blessed with having Lori Hoechlin as my relay teammate. ¬†She has been riding really strong this year. ¬†I only hope I don’t slow her down too much ūüôā

I will put SPOT transmitter so if you are interested in following us on the 308 race course please look for the link in the next couple of days!  If you are local to Southern California please make an effort to be at the Start/Finish hotel and support AdventureCORPS, crews and racers!


Saturday 5/31 630am start time

Hyatt Regency Valencia 24500 Town Center Drive (at McBean Pkwy), Valencia, CA 91355, 661-799-1234.

All for now…


Alin Lupas Crew Chief

Lori Hoechlin Racer

George “Red-Eyed Vireo” Vargas racer


Product Review – Diadora Vector Pro Cycling Shoes

I am very excited to do a product review on the new Diadora Vector Pro Cycling shoes.

MSRP $399

A few quick notes I wear a Specialized S-Works, Suplest a Switzerland company, and Shimano.  I am also wearing a Diadora Vector Pro 45.

Right out of the box the fit and finish was extraordinary!  The stitching work was immaculate.

The upper is made from large panels to minimize seams.

The insole supplied is a throw-away insole.  I use a Specialized insole.  I replaced it immediately.

There are a few good days of riding in this next week I will report back after a few hundred miles.

You can browse the Diadora Vector Pro here





Hospital Experience III

I would like to thank you for reading my blog. ¬†Your comments, publicly and privately, have kept me motivated during this down time. ¬†Let’s press on.

In case you missed the accident post

part I 

part II 

When I last left you ¬†I was having trouble urinating. ¬†Nurse Shannon impressed upon me the importance of urinating. ¬†If she didn’t have¬†350 ml of urine during her shift then I wouldn’t be allowed to go home. ¬†The clock was now ticking… against me.

Over the years as my dedication to cycling and my mileage increased many of the things I used to do on my free time were put on the back burner. ¬†My free time waned as I moved through the stages of recreational bike rider (read occasional rider), avid cyclist, enthusiast cyclist and eventually to an Ultra Cyclist. ¬†Cycling is a very time intensive sport. You can easily loose 4-6 hours of productivity in your day but gain the intangibles of mental clarity, stress relief and physical fitness. ¬†Many of the hobbies I had before cycling have become a thing of the past. ¬†I have joked with my friends and said, “I used to _________ but that was BC” BC- before cycling.

You might recall from my last post that I was unable to eat my breakfast. ¬†It had been more than 24 hours since my last meal — a protein shake. ¬†I drank my juice and had a scant amount of oatmeal which I promptly threw up during my two PT visits. ¬†As the hours passed my stomach came back online. I ordered lunch and consumed it zestfully. ¬†The cart arrived. ¬†The main course – macaroni and cheese, the cheese was delightfully browned from the center giving way to the caramel colored brunt edges – just the way I like it, bread rolls in individual baggies with frozen butter, oh why oh why can’t I have soft butter… and mixed vegetables that, surprisingly, were not overcooked. ¬†Am I really in a hospital? ¬†Compliments to the chef, serveur! I had been drinking juices and water moderately up until that point.

I starting to feel my bladder expanding. A nice accompaniment to my pleasantly full stomach…finally. ¬†I thought I must be ready to urinate. I reached for the bed pan set myself up and I waited…and waited…and nothing. ¬†I was having performance anxiety of a different type. The nurse checked in on me and again I handed her an empty bottle with the shame of someone turning in a final exam to a proctor being ill prepared and subsequently the document is devoid of correct answers.

She informed me that the surgeon was concerned. ¬†His concern would lead to my torture at the hands of the pleasant nurse Shannon. ¬†The next thing she said made me shudder, “….Catheter”. ¬†Few words can put the fear of God in you like that one word. ¬†Can you say shrinkage?

I use to take lots of pictures of landscapes and I enjoyed it. ¬†Notice I didn’t dare call myself a photographer. ¬†This was during the age of the SLR and print film. Do you remember those days? ¬†Buying film in 24 or 36 exposure. ¬†Counting each shot you took. ¬†Ensuring that each picture was perfectly in focus and composed just right. ¬†Now in the digital age we shoot pictures¬†indiscriminately without regard to quantity or quality. ¬†Today a picture can be taken with your “Smartphone”, ¬†a word that didn’t even exist in the dictionary back in 1987! ¬†I enjoyed the process of scouting locations or interesting people and I would frame the results. ¬†I still have a few photos from those days – framed and on my walls. ¬†This is one of my favorites. “I used to take¬†pictures … but that was BC.”
Taken when I was in Egypt on a plateau that overlooked the Great Pyramids.

The Greeks are famous for saying everything in moderation but I don’t think they had to fear a catheter. ¬†Drinking in moderation wasn’t working. ¬†The fear of a catheter was now my new source of motivation to HYDRATE! ¬†I thought about all the times I did long training rides and didn’t hydrate by the “one bottle and hour” rule. ¬†I often go on 6-8 hours rides and not pee once. ¬†I feel fine and finish my rides quite strong with surges and sprints towards the end. ¬†I feared that living in this chronically dehydrated state had now impacted my ability to pee on command.

With renewed interest and now stress added on top, ¬†I began a more aggressive plan on hydrating. ¬†I had a new goal a new challenge! However, I still had reservations. ¬†What happens if I fill my bladder up and then still can’t urinate? ¬†Wouldn’t that be it’s own torment? ¬†Wouldn’t that be a more serious medical issue?

I used to ride a motorcycle ¬† I’ve had 3 very fast motorcycles (Ninjas and Suzuki’s) from 600-1100 cc. ¬†Yes I was the guy in full black Hein Gericke¬†leathers, Alpine Stars racing boots and blacked-out¬†face shield. ¬†Yes I was also the guy ripping up and down Palomar¬†Mountain that you detest. ¬†I have done some ridiculous things on motorcycles. ¬†Often I would find a stretch of road and open it up! ¬†Full throttle! top Gear! Redline! ¬†or as motorcyclist call it WFO (wide fucking open) referring to the throttle — 150-160 mph on the freeway or if I was lucky enough to find a deserted road I would “PEG IT”. I would take the motorcycle to it’s limits scraping pegs, knees and mufflers on curvy canyon or mountain roads. ¬†The adrenaline coursing through my veins as I laid the bike over just inches from the ground made my body tingle. ¬†I am lucky to have escaped certain death in many situations. Motorcycling taught me to be a great bike handler and a fearless and skilled descender on my human powered bike. ¬†Now when I descend a mountain on a pedal bike things seem to be happening in slow motion. ¬†If I take a line and then need to alter the line I can and often do. ¬†On a motorcycle you get one shot … you bank into a corner and it better be right. ¬†I loved my Sunday mornings on my motorcycle. ¬†Yeah “I used to be a motorcyclist … But that was BC.”

Garden variety catheters


A few more of my attempts to pee in the bottle had come to naught.  I had stalled nurse Shannon long enough.  She left the room and returned with a packet.  She explained that this must be done because for some reason my body was not working properly.  I was awake on the 7th floor but my urinary system was still downstairs in the Operating Room.  Nurse Shannon and I were about to take our relationship to the next level.

.If you have never had a catheter installed while you are awake you can’t relate. ¬†If you have then I apologize for having you relive with me the discomfort and pain of what I am about to describe. ¬†It was the strangest sensation. ¬†I felt like I was urinating but I wasn’t and it felt all wrong it was all in reverse. ¬†I could see the seemingly harmless, flexible and pliable red tube disappearing into my penis and I could feel it entering my body now. ¬†When it hit bottom, my bladder, she moved the tube in and out. I felt like I was finally urinating. ¬†I squawked, ¬†“oh good we have something now!” She simply shook her head in a disapproving fashion the way a pitcher signals to his catcher when he doesn’t like the catcher’s recommendation … he shakes off the pitch selected and throws the heat instead. Shannon then pulled out the catheter and seemed as frustrated as I was.

I used to be a runner. ¬†I loved running. ¬†I ran road. ¬†I ran dirt. ¬†I have done many 5K’s, a few 10K’s and two Half Marathons. ¬†When I was in the Marine Corps I would run the first half of the 5k, required as part of our Physical Fitness Test (PFT), ¬†stop and smoke a cigarette with another Marine named Chris. ¬†We would watch the other Marines suffer as they ran past us at the turnaround point. ¬†Then we would flick the cigarette and finish the second half chasing everyone down striving for a negative split. ¬†We could do 19-20 minute 5K that way or run straight through and max out the points in the test by running sub 18 minutes. I miss Chris he was a good running partner. ¬†I have never run a full marathon …not officially anyway. ¬†But I once ran over the requisite 26.2 miles (about 28 miles) in training just so I could say to myself, and to no one else, that I could do it. ¬†I was out on a training run and felt great at 21 miles, “the wall”, people talk about so I kept running. ¬†I never felt the wall. ¬†I don’t know what people mean by that. ¬†I was living in Santee, CA at the time and it was a cool 80 ish F in the morning and well over 100F for my last 5 miles. ¬†It was a 4 hour run through road and dirt and stopping for stop lights. ¬†It was a good run. It was a good day. Yeah “I used to be a runner … but that was BC”.

Nurse Shannon returns she has consulted with the surgeon. ¬†She has to try again. ¬†The surgeon hypothesizes that the nurse has put too much lube and that some of it must have plugged the very small opening of the catheter tube. ¬†Wait, that was too much lube? ¬†Are you kidding? I tremble imagining what no lube would feel like. ¬†And then I’m horrified to hear that she will be putting that damn tube in me again. ¬†I tried to urinate on my own but I only have a dribble to show for my intense focus – 350 ml seemed to this cyclist brain to be an interminable climb!

Here we go again with the catheter sliding into me. ¬†In and out once she hits bottom and still no flow. ¬†She pulls the tube out and scraps everything. ¬†I’m really concerned now. ¬†She rushes off to call the surgeon. ¬†She returns arms akimbo and says if I don’t start flowing soon we will have to resort to more extreme measures. She smiles but I sense the urgency in her voice. ¬†I’m not sure what qualifies as extreme measures put that damn catheter up my !@#$ was pretty damn extreme lady! My refractory¬†urinary system is putting me through hell!

I hated writing when I was in school. ¬†I enjoyed just one writing class in college, just one. ¬†All my other classes were a chore. ¬†They were work and requirements for my degrees. ¬†Yeah degrees — I have a few of them Associates¬†because when in the Marine Corps you never know when you are going to get transferred so you better get it while you can. ¬†Bachelor of Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical¬†University — later my alma mater would become infamous during the 9/11¬†investigation when it was discovered one of the terrorist had attended my school. ¬†Oh yeah and a Masters of Business Administration MBA finance¬†because I thought I was going to be a VP in some¬†corporate empire. ¬†I digress, when I started blogging back in 2004 or 2005, can’t remember, I discovered that writing was actually enjoyable. ¬†If I could choose the subject matter I wanted to write about then it was fun. ¬†Devoid of the encumbrance of a time schedule or the requisite subject of which I must expound upon my writing became pleasurable — can you tell I don’t like¬†structure or being told what to do? ¬†Hence why I¬†became a business owner… to do it my way. My blog posts allowed me to express my interests. ¬†I felt obliged to divulge the secrets of my successful races. ¬†But more importantly I felt duty-bound to communicate, in significant detail, my failures. ¬†Yeah “I hated writing… but that was BC.”

I am now determined to make this happen. ¬†Time and time again I attempt to urinate. ¬†Beads of sweat actually form on my brow as I concentrate and push with all my might. And then… a dribble. ¬†Then a trickle. ¬†And finally a stream. ¬†It had been 30+ hours since I had last urinated.¬†Each time I had something I would call the nurse into the room. ¬†I was like the properly prepared student standing at the teacher’s desk waiting to have their Ace quality paper graded. ¬†I eventually had more than 350 ml for nurse Shannon- always an overachiever. ¬†But there I was each time a little more flow and each a little more proud of my urine in a bottle. ¬†Isn’t that just ridiculous? ¬†But this meant no more catheter from the evil woman! Nurse Shannon wasn’t evil but that damn catheter… This straw colored liquid in the graduated vessel meant my freedom!

Staples on my right hip

Thank you for reading my blog.  With my urinary system working discharge was imminent.  Stay tuned for a more pleasurable post about the family and friends  that made my stay enjoyable.