Wankmeister cycling clinic #19: Ride stronger now!

August 11, 2013 § 25 Comments

Dear Wankmeister:

I have noticed that on big group rides like the Donut, I’m not nearly as fast as most of the others, even though my coach tells me I’m awesome, especially just after the monthly check clears. Even Prez beats me on the climbs. How can I go faster?

Bimsy Bohunk

Dear Bimsy:

Please push down harder on the pedals.


Dear Wankmeister:

I was on the Donut Ride this morning and some dude came up to me who wasn’t, frankly, very nice. He said, “Yo, dude with the Arizona State Champion jersey. Did you win that or buy it at a fucking garage sale?” I was pretty insulted. I told him I’d won it this year. Then, even ruder, he said, “What did you championize, bro?” Championize? He was making fun of me. So I told him I was the Cat 5 state crit champ. That shut him up. So, two questions for you. 1) Who was that asshole? and 2) What’s a guy gotta do around here to get a little respect? They aren’t exactly handing these jerseys out on street corners, y’know?

Petey Puddinhead

Dear Petey:

1) That asshole was me. 2) At a minimum you’ll need to not get dropped by the women on the false flats.

Bearer of bad newsily,

Dear Wankmeister:

I sure do hate the new Donut Ride route. It sux big greasy donkey hooters. It’s too much climbing and it was already too much climbing. You might as well call it the “Rudy and Stathis Ride.” Total bullshit. At a minimum we should have a no drop “B” ride that takes others’ abilities into account, where we can regroup every twenty minutes or so, etc.

Patsy Poopsie

Dear Patsy:

There is a place were “B” rides are very fashionable, and where the weak, the sick, the elderly, the infirm, and the lame can ride at a friendly pace while discussing frame angles and wattage. It’s called “San Diego.”


Dear Wankmeister:

I read all your stuff and do everything you say. I went on your kimchi diet and lost 75 pounds, getting me down to about 132 (I’m 6’4″). After a while I got really sick, all my skin fell off, I lost my job from the absences and the giant scabs, then my girlfriend of ten years left me because of those kimchi farts. Now I see that your “new thing” is donuts and beer. I’m really eager to take this plunge, but once bitten, shame on you, twice bitten, you shouldn’t be petting pit bulls, y’know? So what’s the straight skinny? Donuts and beer, is it legit?

PS: I also tried that nose breathing thing you were raving about and now I get bad nosebleeds all the time and that Prez dude still drops me on all the climbs.

Freddy Fapper

Dear Freddy:

Donuts and beer are the bomb, but they only work when you’ve done a 6-month kimchi purge, which you have. So you’re good to go. You should augment the donuts and beer with butter or with foods that are deep fried, like bubblegum or, best of all, deep fried butter. They’re working on a new recipe for deep fried frying oil, so when they get the right mix of mercury and cadmium to stabilize the frying oil to allow it to be fried, you can add that to your power mix. Trust me on this.


Dear Wankmeister:

We read your blog from time to time out here in southern Illinois, and everyone pretty much agrees you’re a douchebag farty-fuck. Just wanted you to know that.

Mailliw Enots

Dear Mailliw:

I understand that of the two actual bike racers you have in that part of your fine state, one of them spends all his free time in California, and the other has recently retired due to chronic tenderness of the loins.


Dear Wankmeister:

I was so friggin’ stoked to finally get to do the Donut Ride this morning and ride with that Prez dude! He is the bomb! And he is stylish and cuts a pretty swashbuckling figure! Then better yet (as if it could get any better!!) he talked to me!!!!!!!!!! I was asking him training questions and he totally gave me the scoop!!! I was like, “What’s with the 54 x 11 all the time?” Know what he said? “Power training!” Friggin’ rad!! Everyone sure was powering by him!!! And I was like, “What about nutrition?” and he was like “Muscle Milk plus Muscle OJ plus Muscle Water plus Sweaty Excrescence of Skunk Testicle, it’s the bomb!” Then I was like, “Fashion tips?” and he was like “White and black are your base colors; use purple and pink and gangrene yellow for the accents. Match your kits with custom socks and gloves that also go with your eyeliner.” Eyeliner! How rad is that???

Mabel Lene

Dear Mabel:

So glad you hooked up with The Man! He’s been in therapy for the last year since his forced upgrade, but has finally come out of his shell and is gearing up for 2014. You might want to avoid following his wheel too closely, though, or mentioning the words “Charon” or “Smith.” He gets pretty agitated.


Dear Wankmeister:

Down and dirty: Is Froome really on the juice?

Mumsy Muckracker

Dear Mumsy:

Does the Pope like an all-boys choir?


Dear Wankmeister:

I’m perfectly happy with my nickname. I love it, in fact, and really appreciate all the time and effort you took to bestow it on me. My fiancee loves it, my co-workers love it (they Googled me last week), and all my teammates think it’s super. I love it so much I’d never think of asking for a new one, ’cause I’ve heard that only results in getting a really BAD nickname, unlike the cool one I really love and want to keep. Anyway (good riding on the Donut and other rides, btw, you’re killing it, you’re a beast and a monster [PS: props on the TV announcing gig, you ROCKED it], I know you’re going to kill it at nationals), so, I just wanted you know how much I love the blog and my nickname. Awesome stuff, good times! (Fist bump, bro!!). My fiancee’s mom is coming into town for the wedding here in a few weeks, and she was Googling me too, and she saw my nickname and was like WTF? I told her how cool it is and that it really means you respect the hell out of me but she’s from an Asian culture and she just didn’t “get” it, you know? There’s no way I’d ever give up my nickname, not even for her. Still, she got to complaining to my fiancee (who LOVES the nicky, as I said), and it’s become something of an “issue” here right before we get married. So, this is a long way of saying that — and this is NOT for me — could you get me a nickname that uses the word “cobra” or “stingray” or “lethal” and we’ll just use it until the MIL goes home, and we’re through with the wedding and things have settled in? You rock, buddy!


Dear Sausage:

Done, my friend. Henceforth you are “Cobra Penis.” See you on the road, and give my best to your mother in-law.


Wankmeister cycling clinic #16: Race strategy

December 6, 2012 § 10 Comments

Dear Wankmeister:

I was force-upgraded to Cat 2 just as I was on the cusp of the greatest victory and accomplishment and achievement of my life, yes, of course I’m talking about the Cat 3 SoCal Cup victory. No one was even in my zip code and they took it away from me just like that, depriving me of so much, taking away so much from my family, my wife, my children, and of course my legacy.

But I’m not bitter. Not at all. Not even a little.

Instead, I’m taking a negative and making it a positive. I’m taking lemons and making lemonade (you need oranges for that, right?). When one door closes I will kick another one in with my head and just hope it’s not the door to the ICU.

So I’ve set my sights on winning big in 2013. Taking home the glory with the big boys in the Masters 35+ field just like I schooled the punks in the Cat 3 and Cat 4 and Cat 5 except for those few times I splatted on my face and busted out all my teeth. The “BIG DUDE” I’ll be throwing down with is a dude named Norach Htims (that’s not his REAL name, “wink, wink,” it’s in CODE–hint, tnih). Problem is I need some strategic help because of the following analysis:

1–I’m a sprunter, Norahc’s a sprunter, except he wins a lot, which makes him more of a sprinter.

2–I’m a beast in the weight room, Norahc’s a beast in the weight room, except he’s kind of, like, more of a beast.

3–I’m dedicated to the program 24/6, but Norahc’s dedicated 24/7. As a family man I just can’t dedicate those 2.5 hours of family time while I’m snoring in church to go out and do something stupid like ride my bike. It’s just a hobby. I really feel sorry for people who are as old as me and think they’re going to get a pro contract some day. Sad, really.

4–I can’t climb, Norahc can’t climb. But we can both clumb.

5–My team is filled with deadbeats and wankers so I’m always on my own, but Norahc has a cadre of dudes who can cover breaks, chase attacks, and lead him out in the sprunt. This year they added more horses to the stable, but all my team got was this dude named Pepe who’s, like 127 lbs. and barfs every time we go over 23 mph.

6–My team kit this year is done by Joe Yule at StageOne, and Norahc will still be wearing some variation of that lame outfit designed with architectural drawing software.

7–I’m SPY, he’s Oakley.

So that’s the down and dirty. Help me, Wanky. If this works out I’ll make sure you get a cut from the pro contract I’m angling for.

Evad Zerep (That’s not my REAL name, “wink, wink,” it’s in CODE too–EDOC, get it?)

Dear Evad:

I’ve tried really hard to figure out the real names in this soap opera, but it’s beyond my feeble powers, so I’ll just call you “Frankendave,” okay?

After looking at the tip sheet, it’s clear that for looks and visual acuity, you have this Norahc dude beaten before the race even starts. Oakley is for wankers, straight up, and without a custom StageOne kit, he’ll always be second or third-rate when the race finishes and people start critiquing the podium-wear.

Problem is, as long you’re racing against him, you’re never gonna get to the podium unless you change things up. That’s where Wanky can help. So take out the ol’ pen and pencil and copy this shit down, because Wanky’s gonna give you some victory tips for 2013. I don’t care how good this Norahc dude is, he can be beaten (okay, maybe not by you), but more importantly, he doesn’t have the Wankmeister calling the strategy shots, and you do. He’s got the swank, but you’ve got the Wank.

1–After looking at his 2012 race results, Norahc is winning races for one reason and one reason only: He’s the first guy over the line. That’s it, simple as A-B-C. You can p*wn him every day, every race, by finishing in front of him. So it’s pretty easy, actually. Just go a tad faster and then you’ll be first, not him. Okay, a shitload faster. Okay, a few time zones faster. Whatever.

2–The best way to beat a sprinter is to get on his wheel and come around him at the end. For all your races next year, you will need to get on Norahc’s wheel with one lap to go. Then, just as he takes off, give him a couple of pedal strokes to accelerate, stay in his draft, then YOU push the pedals even harder and rocket by him. Then you’ll be the winner and he’ll be the first loser.

3–Since no one’s going to let Norahc ride in a break with them, your next best game plan is to get in the winning break. When you see the winning break go, just ride up to them and hop on. It may seem hard riding by yourself away from 150 people to cross a windswept, rolling 45-second gap, but that’s just in your head. Once you’re in the break just sit there and rest. Don’t do a thing. Then all the other guys like Paolinetti and Tintsman and MJ and DiMarchi, who will have been working like Trojans the whole race and who will have let you sit back there steeping tea and tightening the ratchets on your shoes, will all be TUCKERED OUT. You just hit the gas and dust ‘em in the sprint. Norahc will be so far back he’ll finish with the next age category.

4–If plans 1-3 fail? Downgrade. Or better yet, register as a new racer under the name Evad Zerep. No one will know! (Wink, kniw!)


Hey, Wankmeister Dude:

I’m a Cat 2 sprinter champion all-star ladies’ man very humble person who races with the Masters 35+. I’m not afraid of anyone especially this new guy I’m gonna tell you about who just upgraded. I don’t want to use any names because it’s a small community and people start talking and Facebooking and pretty soon even though you just said, “She’s a nice girl,” people have made it out like you knocked up the chick and are marrying her sister at a shotgun wedding. So I’m just gonna call this dude “Evad Zerep,” kind of like my own code. Name’s not important anyway because I sure ain’t scared of this dude.

Nah, he’s nothin’, you can take my word for it. When he finally lines up against me next year I’m going to dismantle him I got no problems with this dude. He’s a friend but on the bike I’m not scared of him at all. You can take that to the bank. Just not Countrywide.

But, even though I ain’t scared of this dude, somebody like YOU would be because actually for a wanker dude he’s pretty quick. He’s not near as quick as me, got it? But he’s a thousand times quicker than YOU’LL ever be. No offense, but I’ve seen those pictures of you in the weight room and I’ve seen you race and dude, you suck. No offense.

So anyway, let’s say someone like you is really worried about this Zerep dude, right? You’re, like, staying up at night, and checking out his FB, and getting intel on him and watching everything he does because YOU’RE afraid, and you should be.

So now, here’s my question: How would a scared slow dude like YOU (not a super fast un-scared dude like me) race against this Zerep dude to beat his ass? That’s my question.

I ain’t scared of no one for nothing,
Htims Norahc

Dear Htims:

I’m actually not scared of this Zerep dude at all, except on Tuesdays and Thursdays when he shows up on the NPR, because I don’t have to race against him. You, on the other hand, should be terrified. You’ll have your hands full in 2013 with this Zerep character. Don’t ever underestimate a cross-dressing Puerto Rican who can wear green and yellow and not get immediately thrown in jail. Dude’s got skills.

You can beat him, though, because you’ve got the Wankmeister on your side. He’s got the swank, but you’ve got the Wank. Let me walk you through it.

1–Dude’s most dangerous move is the 200m head-throw. This is where you’re going full gas, you think you’ve got him at the line, when just at the last second he hurls himself off his bike and passes you, face-first, by a nose. It’s bloody and nasty and there’s tooth enamel everywhere afterwards, but a vee is a vee is a vee. To counter the head-throw all you need to do is wear one of those big Groucho Marx fake glasses-and-big-nose disguises. Zerep’s nose is too short to beat one of those, even with a solid face toss.

2–Dude’s next most dangerous move is the 350m skitterchop. Just as you’re coming through the last turn, he slides his back wheel and cuts the turn and sends the top-placed four or five riders over the curb and onto the gurney. Dude’s arms are raised for the last 200m, the only person even close is the paramedic. Your best counter when he starts to slide, wobble, and chop, is to scream out “Free Rapha socks right THERE!” He’ll twist his neck, let off on the gas, rear tire won’t skitter, and you’ll come through the turn and leave him in the dust. By the way, what the hell are you doing behind him?

3–Zerep Coffee Zing: Watch out for this one because it happens BEFORE the race starts. You’re standing under your team tent, getting your nuts waxed by some hot exercise physiologist, excuse me, I mean warming up on the trainer, and you’re also sipping on your favorite soy latte double froo-froo mocha caramel quaddro espresso, and that cup is hot. Fiery hot. Zerep comes up behind you and sticks his tongue in your ear. Poof! You spill the coffee on the head of the masseuse, scald her scalp, and she bites down on your, uh, pedal. OWWWW! Blood loss in the big tent! You lose half a pint while it takes four strong men to wrap a giant tarp around the massive bleeding and wounded, uh, pedal. That half a pint is the margin of victory, Htmis. So: Take care of all your “warm-up” the night before, and save race day for racing.

Well, that’s all the golden advice for today. Happy racing, and Doog Kcul!


Wankmeister cycling clinic #15: Secret training

December 5, 2012 § 11 Comments

Dear Wankmeister:

Everybody is getting fitter and faster, but when I ask them what they’re doing, they say, “Nothing,” or “Just chilling with base miles,” or “Taking time off the bike.” How can that be? When I take time off the bike I eat Cheetos by the kilo and gain, like, ten pounds a day. What’s the deal here? Are they telling the truth?

E. A. Poe

Dear Edgar:

Are they cyclists? Are they talking about their training? Then they’re LYING. This is the time of year when everyone has a double secret probation training plan formulated by their Olympic coach. It includes weight loss, weight training, intervals, and long miles at medium intensity. Plus a new bike, a new gym membership, new team kits, and the latest “secret weapon,” which is protein replenishment during the ride.

Don’t worry, though. The same guys will still win all the same races. And you, Edgar, will still suck. So enjoy the Cheetos.


Dear Wankmeister:

Prez says that Rapha is the Prada of cycling. What is Prada?

R. Lauren

Dear R.:

Prada is Italian for “Go to the front and take a fucking pull, you wanker!” Isn’t Italian concise? Rapha-wearers like the Goose-Man NEVER go to the front and NEVER take a pull because they’re already wearing Rapha, which makes it just as if they “took a pull.” Cool, huh?


Dear Wankmeister:

How exactly is weight training going to make me faster? I don’t fancy blowing money on a gym membership. Plus, I got a weak back.

Doubting Danny

Dear Danny:

Weight training has been proven time and time again to make people better cyclists. After a month in the gym you will hate the oily ‘roid dealers, the urine soaked smell of all the benches, the gooey smears of other people’s sweat on the mats, and the narcissistic mirror-preening so much that you’ll do anything to avoid the weights, including ride your bike. So you’ll be getting in huge miles by trying to avoid the gym, which will make you faster.


Dear Wankmeister:

I’ve religiously followed the Wankmeister Hunger Diet during the off-season and have lost forty pounds. But I’m afraid I’m going to cave during the food-and-drink overdose of the holidays. Advice?

Writing on the Walledly,
Douggie Doomsday

Dear Douggie:

Oh my Dog, I can’t believe you took any of that diet crap seriously. I was joking. That diet will kill you. Start your holiday binge NOW!

Panicked about the lawsuitedly,

Dear Wankmeister:

I tried ‘cross this winter because you said it would help me when crit season started. So far I’ve broken three ribs, been hospitalized twice, and torched two brand new frames. What do you say now?

Dudley Do-Right

Dear Dudley:

Sounds like you’re ready to give up cycling any day now. See? It’s working!


Waffling reader can’t make up mind about power meter

September 6, 2011 § 4 Comments

Dear Wankmeister:

I’ve been cycling for three years now. I started with a hand-me-down Nishiki that my brother used in college, and have gradually worked my way up to a new Specialized Venge with Zipp 800′s and Shimano Di2. I started doing the Donut Ride about a year ago and although the first part is tough but doable, I have a lot of trouble when we hit the bottom of the Switchbacks. I’ve also done some USCF road races and tend to come unhitched when the road tilts up. After reading Coggan’s “Training and Racing with a Power Meter,” I’ve almost made the decision to up my game and get one, but it’s a tough sell on the home front as my wife doesn’t really “get” why I need a power meter after buying such an expensive bike. I’ve tried to explain power to weight ratios to her and stuff like that, but her eyes just glaze over, she starts talking about the kids’ orthodontics, and then I don’t get any sex for a couple of weeks. Any suggestions on how I can make my case? I’m primed for some serious training this winter and an upgrade to the 4′s in 2012.

Tired of Talking to the Hand,
Billy Budd

Dear Billy:

Pardon me while I puke. There, I’m almost better. Dude, you haven’t “gradually worked up” if you’ve gone from a Nishiki to a Venge in three years. That’s like getting triple D breast implants before you’ve even reached puberty. Back in the day you had to ride a shit bike for three years just so you could upgrade to 32-spoke GP4′s, you spoiled little showoff snotnosed sonofabitch. Your letter indicates that on the Donut, prior to hitting the Switchbacks you’re already in trouble, which should be a Wanker Alert of the first order: the Donut Ride should be a fucking cakewalk until you hit the climb. If you’re so much as cracking a sweat before then, your problems have nothing to do with a power meter, and everything to do with power, of which you apparently don’t have much. Getting a power meter to increase your power is like getting a longer tape measure to increase your height. And by the way, your wife’s not the only one who doesn’t “get” it; I don’t, either. You’re getting shelled at the bottom of the climb on $10,000 worth of bike? You need to study Newton’s First Law of Cyclodynamics, which is that idiots can never be created or destroyed, they can only change bikes. And if you feel stupid flailing off the back on the equivalent of a Ferrari, think how stupid you’re gonna feel when you introduce your friends to your kids and their teeth are growing down into their chins. IT’S A FUCKING HOBBY, MORON, NO MATTER HOW MANY PARTS AND KITS YOU OWN THAT LOOK JUST LIKE FABIAN’S! Plus, the fact that you can even think about sex is proof that you’re not logging the miles, and are logging something else instead.

The Wankmeister

Dear Wankmeister:

I’ve done some reading on tubulars v. clinchers. Which do you recommend?

Glued to My Inbox,
Sammy Snuffles

Dear Sammy:

A long time ago, when hard men with names ending in a string of unpronounceable consonants plied the cobbles between Compiègne and Roubaix, there were good reasons to use a tire that leaves you covered up to your eyelids in glue, that falls off the rim when it’s too hot resulting in catastrophic accidents, that can only be repaired by a master seamstress, that requires you to carry an entire other 2-lb. tire for flats on the road, and that costs ten times more than a replacement clincher inner tube. That time was long before you were born, during a Golden Age of Cycling when it was honorable to be stupid. Now, the only reason to use a tubular is if you’ve purchased every possible component and whacky invention to increase your speed (think elliptical chain rings, Power Cranks, etc.), yet you still suck. They won’t make you any faster, but you’ll take out the field when you rip through the state championship crit on the last lap and roll a tire.

The Wankmeister

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