January 2012

A Message from Coach Paul

By | January 27th, 2012|

Hello Team-
Myself and the team board met late Wednesday evening to discuss the practices we’ve had so far and the coming 2012 season. The consensus was overwhelming. We want each of you to know that we couldn’t be more proud of the team and excited for the coming season! We are off to an incredible start!
I want to personally congratulate everyone on your Time Trial. The effort each of you put in was something pretty special to be a part of. They’re not easy. Start line jitters, gearing, hydration, your approach to the distance, the terrain…not to mention this was the first time some of you have done one of these. Time Trials are widely considered the toughest discipline in the sport of cycling.
So comb through the results, chat about them, compare them to your teammates….thats natural. The real value in this data, however, is using your result as just that….your result. This effort was not you against anyone else, it was you versus yourself and the clock. Your result serves as a baseline for your current fitness level at the start of your 2012 mtn biking season. We will have an end-of-season time trial just before the state championship and possibly one mid-season. Provided you attend practice and do a little riding on your own your fitness will improve. One of the ways you’ll see your improvement is through lowering your TT time. (last year the change in results was dramatic)
Keep in mind that our races are not time trials…they are racing against a field of riders over varied terrain and not nearly the climbing you did in the TT. (yes…the TT course you did…its a brutal one) TT results give an indication of fitness but provide little in the way of predicting how your races will go.
And a short note to everyone: I’ve been riding and racing for a lot of years so I say this with a veteran eye….don’t focus on results, its all about getting there. We’re riding bikes so have fun.
Coach Paul














































































*mechanical-dropped chain

Today’s Ride

By | January 25th, 2012|

I’ll see everyone at the Depot at 3:30. We’ll take a slow, steady pedal up railroad grade to the first aid station as our warm up and then begin the TT. If parents want to test their legs they’re welcome to participate as well.

Coach Paul
Coach Christy

“The TT”

By | January 23rd, 2012|

Hello Team-

Two days from today we will run our first Time Trial of 2012. For most everyone the ride will be less than 15 minutes but is undoubtedly an all-out-effort. From the first aid station you will be sent straight uphill, timed….you against the clock.
Quick preparation for the effort should be as follows:
  1. either no ride or a very easy spin on Tuesday. emphasis should be on high cadence and lower muscular tension. stay on the flats and spin quickly (90 rpms) and just for a few minutes. no riding is fine as well. you want to be fresh and recovered for wednesday.
  2. i suggest no food after lunch on wednesday but keep hydrated. at least a few bottles of water or electrolyte between lunch and the time trial.
  3. bring plenty of water/electrolyte with you. i also suggest a gu/gel or blocks/energy bar. your metabolism will be on overdrive after the effort and its a good window to fuel.
  4. we will release a rider every minute. all riders will wait at the end of the tt for everyone to finish so bring clothing to keep warm. you will get chilled if you don’t.
After the tt you’ll have two options for the balance of the practice. Either head straight down the hill and back to town or take Hoo Koo E Koo, which will be an easy recovery spin to shake the legs out.
If anyone has any questions about the tt let me know.
Coach Paul

Ride is ON!!!!

By | January 22nd, 2012|

Sunday’s Ride and the return of the infamous “TT”

By | January 21st, 2012|

Hello Team-

Inclement Weather-The Scoop
Sunday’s ride is scheduled to depart from the depot at 9:00am. In the case of potential inclement weather…….check the blog! Inclement weather has cancelled rides before. The rule of thumb is if the weather poses danger or makes conditions unsafe we cancel the ride. Safety takes precedent when it comes to all of our team activities. If it is raining we generally cancel but again…..check the blog! Last season we made the go/no go decision on a few rides as late as 45 minutes before our departure. I advise riders to be prepared to ride but ready to cancel.
Individual TT-“The Race of Truth”
For those who were with the team last year you remember the uphill TT, probably better than you care to. We will again have a season opening TT. Scheduled for January 25th the TT starts from the first aid/water station on Railroad Grade and goes uphill for between 7 and 14 minutes. This is a hard effort and is referred to as “the race of truth” in cycling circles. Its you against the clock. I would not focus on any specific training for the effort….the first season’s practice TT is to give you and your coaches a sense of your current fitness level. Over the next few weeks we will begin to introduce hill repeats/intervals to simulate race attacks and hard efforts to acclimate your body to threshold efforts.
I suggest no large amounts of food within 90-120 minutes of the TT and be well hydrated right up to the start of the TT. We will have at least two ride leaders/coaches at the TT which will give you the option of either heading straight down afterwards or doing a light, recovery spin on Hoo Koo E Koo. All riders wait at the TT finish until the last person is up so bring appropriate clothing to avoid getting chilled.
If weather cancels the TT on the 25th we will run it on the following Wednesday. I understand some practices may be missed for very good reasons. I urge you to make every effort to be at Wednesday’s TT practice. The run will provide you and your coaches with very good data to work with and will also give you a realistic idea of a race effort. Your results will also serve as a “before” look at your season opening fitness as we’ll run another TT on the same course towards the latter part of the season. Last year everyone improved!…the before/after results were very interesting….lots of riders surprised themselves.
Check the blog!
Coach Paul
Coach Christy


By | January 17th, 2012|

Practice Change!!!

We are meeting in front of Gus Gym at 3:30 tomorrow. We’ll do an alternative ride from Railroad Grade. Plan on being back to Gus Gym before dark…roughly two hours. Let your teammates know.
Also…with temps dropping be prepared! Quoc and Bryce at Tam Bikes is one of our sponsor’s and provides the team a generous discount. If you don’t have a jacket or vest pick one up. Arm and knee warmers as well as full fingered gloves are a smart choice, particularly with our afternoon rides. As soon as the sun drops, so goes the temperature.
Coach Paul
Coach Christy

Get Registered

By | January 17th, 2012|

Hello Team-

If you’re club dues have been paid you now have an email in your inbox inviting you to register with the league. Please do so asap. An email will be sent to you and your parent/guardian as a reminder. Don’t wait for that email reminder! Please take a few minutes with your parent/guardian and get registered today.
If you do not have an email inviting you to register your dues have not yet been submitted to the club and are now past due. Please submit them as soon as possible. Please have a check made payable to: Tam High Mtn Bike Club. It can be submitted to myself or Christy.
If you or your parent/guardian has any questions please let me know. As always…this blog is our primary form of communication. Check it every day and please pass along the address to your parent/guardian so they can check it as well.
Coach Paul
Coach Christy

Look out…..WE’RE BACK!

By | January 17th, 2012|

I see the same diamond in the rough I saw last year at this time…..only to be polished into a shiny diamond by the time racing season started. Get ready…..its starting all over again!

Sunday Equals Ride Number Two

By | January 13th, 2012|

Our first ride showed who has been checking the blog. Please remember that this blog is our primary form of communication for anything and everything team related. Check the blog everyday. If you check it in the morning…check it again in the evening! We also have a facebook page that we will try to keep updated..you can check that as well. We have an email message going out to each of you and your parents/guardians about Sunday’s ride.

Our next ride will meet at the Depot in downtown at 9am this Sunday. Two easy hours. Make sure your bike is in good working order, be on time, have materials to repair a flat and have water/electrolyte drink and your helmet. Also…please invite your parents/guardians. They are always welcome at all team activities….we’d love to have them along!
Coach Paul

NICA Volunteers Needed

By | January 11th, 2012|

Hello Team-
Below is an email from NICA. They need volunteers! Please take a look and contact Chris Spencer if you’re interested/available to help out.
Coach Paul

We are quickly putting together groups of volunteers for the Saturday, January 14th NICA Awards Banquet with special guest Adam Craig. The NICA Annual Awards were established in 2010 to honor those individuals, student-athletes, coaches, volunteers and partners that have made outstanding contributions toward the development of high school cycling and the national high school mountain biking movement. The banquet is from
5:00 – 8:30 PM.

We are asking each NorCal team local to the

Clif Bar Headquarters to contribute 3 to 7 volunteers depending on team size. All Volunteers are invited to watch the Adam Craig’s in-depth interview and multi-media presentation chronicling his epic quest for Olympic glory in the 2012 London Olympics. A pizza and salad dinner will be provided for the volunteers. All volunteers also receive a special NICA Schwag bag.

We have five volunteer positions each fun and engaging in their own way. We encourage riders, parents and coaches to choose positions based on what interests them and works with the rest of their team for transport, etc.
If you would like to volunteer, please e-mail me at [email protected]. Also be sure to be in touch with your team as you’ll be helping them hit their goal volunteer number and may be able to carpool.

Kitchen Server/ Buser/ Auction Runner (Student Athlete)
Saturday January 14th 4:00 – 9:30 PM
Ever wonder what it would be like to work at a restaurant or work a 150 person event? The evening starts with serving appetizers to special guests in the Clif Bar Foyer before guiding them to the main room. In the main room, you’ll serve dinner and keep water glasses full. After dinner you will help with the auction by spotting and bringing winnings to bidders. The evening ends with Adam Craig’s presentation then a quick clean-up. Dress code is black pants and your team’s jersey.

Kitchen Captain (Coach or Parent)
Saturday January 14th 4:00 – 9:30 PM
Support our student athletes as they formally serve for their first time. You will be the link between the kitchen and dinning room making sure all the tables get the various dishes Clif’s Kali’s Kitchen cooks up. If interested, please call Chris to discuss special instructions before the event (510-200-0504).

Bike Spinners and Event Set-up (Student Athlete)
Saturday January 14th 12:00 – 6:15 PM
Come before the event to set-up and make sure everything is set. Put gift bags together, make sure the tables, settings and chairs are in place as well as do some decorating. After set-up, you will change into your team kit and greet guests with the roar of bike trainers. After you ride, you may stay to watch Adam Craig’s talk starting around 7:30 PM. Please bring your team kit to change into, a water bottle and 26″ wheel mountain bike or road bike.

Set-up/ Take down (Coach, Parent or Rider)
Friday January 13th 4:00 – 6:30 PM
Saturday January 14th 8:30 – 11:00 PM (or earlier if things go quickly)
It’s challenging to host an awards banquet on a three-level transportable stage. On Friday we will take apart the stage and on Saturday after the event, we’ll set it back up. We’ll also be moving tables on both days. On Saturday, come an hour early at 7:30 PM if you’d like to watch Adam Craig’s talk.

Kali’s Cleaning Crew (Adult)
Saturday January 14th 7:00 – 10:00 PM
Want to attend the cocktail hour, see Adam Craig talk and volunteer all at the same time? Great! Attend the cocktail hour as a comped guest before helping Clif volunteers and Kali’s crew clean up the kitchen. You’ll break for Adam’s Talk if you like before finishing up around 10:00 PM or when the job is finished.

For more information about the NICA Awards, visit the website:

We will e-mail you driving directions and any more details when you RSVP.

I hope you’ll be able to make this unforgettably fun evening of volunteering.

Sincerely yours,


Chris Spencer


Programs Manager

Coast to Coast by 2020


(510) 200-0504


(510) 524-5464


(510) 743-4207