2011 Wrap-up

Posted on 10:18 AM by Schottler

I feel like I just wrote about this for 2010, weird. This year has absolutely flown by, I am not sure why that is, maybe because I have been anticipating big life changes, waiting week by week. Unfortunately for me, I've waited the whole year with not much to show. If things start going my way, 2012 will be a great year. I mean it better, it is the last year of all our lives.

Racing in 2011 went pretty well with the effort I put in to it. I have to admit my motivation to train and race has been pretty low the entire year. I hit a plateau with my fitness and training plan (or lack thereof,) and wasn't able to clear my head of finding a career or finishing grad school. It's apparent that 2012 will obviously need some huge changes if I actually want to get faster on the bike and make it through the whole season with a smile on my face.

Anyway, I still had some race results I was really happy about, despite breaking my wrist and being stuck on the trainer for 6 straight weeks early in the year. Finishing Leadville in 7:37 was a huge accomplishment for myself. Tying for 3rd overall in the USAC Pro UET MTB series was pretty cool. A 2nd place finish at the Spa City 6 hour, racing with Manuel Prado for over 2 hours and only finishing 6 minutes behind him after 6 hours. 7th place at my 2nd ever 100 miler, Shenandoah 100. I didn't get that many mountain races in, but I still had some strong fitness coming in to cross season, which lead to a bunch of wins and a 13th place finish at UCI Gateway Cross in STL. That fitness really disappeared as the cross season went on, so I continued racing for fun.

Like I said earlier, a huge change in training is in store for 2012. I think it's called a training plan or something. Coaches can make them to get you doing the correct thing to build fitness and prepare your body to survive the entire racing season. So instead of mindlessly pedaling around in the endurance zone every day, workouts are prepared. It's time to quit winging it and jump over the plateau and set some real goals and get fast.

Before the heavy training gets started, all the bikes are getting ready, and finally cleaning my poor car after destroying it from 20k bike race miles.


Posted on 8:20 AM by Schottler

I'm sure most of the 2 or 3 people who read this probably know that my step-dad passed away unexpectedly on the 8th from a heart attack. I really don't know how to express how we are all feeling, so I won't say much. My Dad passed away when I was 11 from a heart attack as well. Joe was my step-dad for 11 years too, and losing a Dad for a 2nd time doesn't get much easier. I learned a lot the first time and know more about how to deal with it and what to expect, which includes a lot of bike riding.

He was a VERY respected man, who accomplished about 100 times more than most people do in their lives. He made a huge impact in my life and will be missed greatly, but everything I was taught from him will always remain, which is how he will live on. Without his encouragement and support the last 11 years, who knows where I would be.

My sister Kelly called me on the morning of the 8th while I was sitting in my office and I flew home, literally, 1 hour 35 minutes from Columbia to my parents house by the airport in KC. I come around the corner of the house and see about 15 police cars with officers lining our entryway.

We had a police escort to the visitation, which never happens, as well as a 16 KCPD motorcycle and 5 police car escort to the funeral. The visitation had an estimated 400 people come by and the funeral completely packed with at least 30 people standing at the back. It's obvious how much of an impact he made to so many people's lives.

Here is his obituary:

"Joseph P. McHale, Ph.D., lovingly known as "Big Joe," of Kansas City, Missouri, passed away on December 8th, 2011 of natural causes. Joseph was born May 13, 1950 to Joseph and Orpha McHale in Riverside, California. During his youth, he relocated numerous times to the different military bases his father was assigned to in the United States Air Force. While living in Macon, Georgia, in the mid 1960's, Joe married his first wife, Starlette Rose White McHale, and fathered two children, Stephanie Marie and Joseph Frederick McHale. Joe married his second wife, Suzanne Schottler, in 2001 and had the honor of becoming part of the Schottler family. This included daughters Kelly Schottler and Melissa Bodine, and sons Travis Graf and Jonathan Schottler. Joe was a dedicated and proud grandfather to Amelia and Michael McHale and Eleanor Bodine. The mother of his heart was Amelia White, of Milledgeville, Georgia.

Joe began a distinguished career in law enforcement with the Macon, Georgia Police Department in 1971, where he remained until he was hired by the Kansas City Missouri Police Department in 1975. He remained with the Kansas City Missouri Police Department until 2001 when he retired at the rank of Major. Joe gained vast experience during his tenure but was most proud of the Traffic Unit assignments he held at every rank. Joe became Chief of Police of Platte City, Missouri in 2002.

He obtained a Doctorate Degree from Northcentral University in Business Administration with a specialization in Criminal Justice-Homeland Security & Terrorism, as well as dual Master's Degrees in Public Administration and Information Management Technology. He was also working on a third Master's Degree in Homeland Security Terrorism. With his educational achievements, he began teaching at several universities. Joe was a graduate of the FBI National Academy and a very strong supporter of the United States Military.

The countless people whose lives he touched had the opportunity to know an extremely caring, supportive, intelligent, honest, and giving man. He was the rock that everyone could rely on when help or advice were needed. Joe was so widely known in the Kansas City area and in the KCMO Police Department that many of his stories are legendary and not in short supply. Every time he went out, he always ran into someone he knew. It was an equal rarity that he encountered a subject that he did not know something about; he was a walking volume of encyclopedias. His vast knowledge on a wide range of subjects, most notably history and military history, was awe-inspiring for even the most seasoned trivia buff. Though he had devoted much of his life to public service, his family always came first. Even as that family grew after his marriage to Suzanne, in Joe's eyes he had six children and he treated them all equally. He was a wonderful, loving husband and father, devoted grandfather, a teacher and a truly great friend."

I'll be moving back to KC tomorrow to live with my Mom until I find a job somewhere, which will be at least a month. My Master's thesis was accepted by the graduate school this morning, which means there's nothing left to do, my graduate degree in mechanical engineering is finally finished. I never want to do that again. It's a sad feeling leaving Columbia, my home the last 7.5 years. I've met countless lifetime friends and have had the time of my life, there are so many good memories, I can't believe this part of my life is over. I say I am leaving, but will probably be back quite a bit.

Good Training Week + State CX

Posted on 7:38 AM by Schottler

My plan was to put in some endurance/tempo paced rides for the next couple weeks to burn some holiday cookies and enjoy myself. Last year I gained about 10 lbs in a month from not riding and eating a million cookies... which lead to trying to lose it through most of my base mile period, not fun. Breaking even is the plan this year. I even got in a fun near 6 hour ride with Pam Hinton and Mike Bruzina on Friday, with no plan of racing state cx. Saturday night Butthead asked why I wasn't racing, I had no excuse, so I thought what the hell, I can just have fun in the mud.

That was my goal on Sunday, have fun playing in the mud and see what would happen. Mike Weiss was kind of enough to loan me his set of 303's with Challenge Limus tires. I also had some friends working the pit for me, unfortunately there was no water, they were kind enough to pick the mud off while I was out on the other bike.

I started on the last row and managed to get in the first corner in last place, neato. "Have fun, have fun, have fun." A few motorcycle sounds and a lap later, I was in the front group with Dan Miller and Travis Donn. I felt alright, my legs were sore and hurting from the long week of training, but I usually ride the mud pretty well. I stayed with them for a few laps and then got tape caught in my cassette, which required to me to take out my wheel and I lost at least 30 seconds, as Butthead flew by. No one in sight behind me, chase mode. Low back was hurting and my legs didn't really have much. I then passed Dan running with his bike, with another failed derailleur. Here is the front group for the first few laps, Dan, Travis, and me. (Photo credit to Jason Watkins)

With about 3 laps to go my low back pain went away and I got in a groove and started flying. Casey Saunders seemed to be having some bike problems as we were lapping him, I was coming up on him fast, and I didn't say which side I was passing him on, since I didn't really know until I was on him. He swerved over to where I was going and I slammed in to his bars pretty hard. I went flying over the bars in to a mud puddle and he went down too. Whoops, sorry Casey. Lost another 15ish seconds and was soaking wet and cold the rest of the race. I was still making up time, but not enough to overcome my issues. Butthead won again, Travis Donn had a freaking awesome race in 2nd, and I finished 3rd, only 20ish seconds behind Butthead.

I am happy, I didn't have any expectations, didn't prepare at all for the race, and didn't break any bike parts. I guess it is possible for me to race for fun.