Monday, December 31, 2007

It's not cold here!

I got so sick of the cold weather and riding inside, I picked up and headed down to Phoenix. It was so nice today I road in Shorts! Do you see the sun in the upper left corner? Yea that's right you Coloradoans no snow on the side of the roads!

Do you notice anything different about this cyclist? (hint look at the head, our bike line bikers don't look like this) For some reason this really amused me.

My awesome coach, Corey Hart, hooked me up with a place to stay at his clients house down in Phoenix. Melissa and Art, they are wonderful! Oh, and I can't forget there very cute dog Ouray. The first night I got to Phoenix they cooked me a steak dinner! Tonight we are having smoked salmon!
Happy New Years! Can't wait to ride tomorrow.
Sunny weather = Happy Carmen

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Track Camp Finished

I have no pictures, sorry. It is kind of a bitter sweet for me leaving track camp. I missed out on a couple of days so I wasn't ready to leave the track. But I am excited to go home and start feeling better.

I am still pretty congested and it has now moved into my chest. I have developed this nice deep cough. I get some pretty awful glares at the airport with this nice cough. On my first flight before we took off, I had a coughing fit and the lady that was sitting in my row got up and left. She moved to another open seat. (I guess I would have done the same thing)

All in all I did have a good time at camp. I wish I could have been healthy, but at least we have one more in January!

Good luck to the girls who are doing the World Cup. Go fast, turn left, and don't stop pedaling. I am sure you all will kick some a##!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Still sick no fun!

The last couple of days of camp have not been very fun. I am still pretty congested and really just want to breath through my nose. I did get to ride today and that was much better than sitting in my room and sleeping all day. Tomorrow I get to go to the track! We will see how it goes. So until tomorrow...

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Track Camp

This is day 2 at Track Camp and I am SICK! SUCKS!

I know I have been a bad blogger, but I have been very busy working, trying to training, and trying to stay warm.

So I am was off to sunny LA and couldn't wait for the warm weather! I arrived Thursday and we put our bikes together and road to the beach.

Alison Powers, Kristin Armstong, Katharine Carroll, and Lauren Franges.

Day 1 of Training Camp:
1. Road for the first time in pursuit position

2. First time doing a standing start - man that was hard

3. First time doing a pursuit - was really fun, not as scary as I was anticipating

4. First time to go that fast on a track

5. First time to change a gear - Thanks Andrew for your help!

Here I am during the warm up for the day.

This is Kat, Alison Powers, and I doing a flying 1500. This was really fun, much better than doing it by your self.

It was Alison's Birthday, so we went to the cheesecake factory.

And yes we did sing her happy birthday. Here is her bday cake, it was delicious.

Last night after we got back from dinner, my throat started to hurt. :( Kristin game me oil of oregano and wow does that stuff burn and taste bad. We will see if it works.

Day 2 of Training Camp:

Woke up this morning and my throat still hurts. Road over to the track with the girls. Did warm up with them. Look how steep the turns are. I was later sent back to the hotel to rest and get better. I have been downing the zinc and airborn. Hopefully I can get better before if gets worse. I slept a lot today and feel a little better right now. Send good thoughts to me so I can get back out there!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Thanksgiving and Snow

Well, it has been absolutely beautiful weather the past couple of months and it was bound to happen that we would get some snow. I guess I just wasn't prepared to get 5 inches in one day.

Thanksgiving was awesome, we (Anne Slam, Brandon, Molly Hummel, and I) road to Vallecito Lake today. It was gorgeous weather and I was actually hot at times. (b/c I was overdressed not because it was 80 degrees)
My dad took some photos of all of use, but didn't realize it was on video setting so I have no pictures of the gang, but two short videos. Here is Anne showing off that she really was a Vallecito.

We had great food, wine, and fun at my dad's house. Brandon and I took the kids over to the park to play. I think Brandon had more fun that the girls. Just look at his face!

The next day I wasn't prepared for all the snow. Anne and I took
the girls to Miller Middle School and played in the field. Little Carmen wanted to get berried, so we all joined in the fun of covering her with snow. I guess when you are 6 years old you don't care about how cold and wet you are going to get.

I guess it is time to suck it up and start training in the freezing cold weather. I just can't wait!!! Right!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Bad Blogger!!

I have been a very bad blogger.

Excuse #1. Really busy
Excuse #2. I really don't know what I have been busy with
Excuse #3. Really busy
Excuse #4. Got a job (see there is something)
Excuse #5. Really jealous of the bikers who don't have to work
Excuse #6. I guess that was a little bitter
Excuse #7. Training
Excuse #8. Sleeping
Excuse #9. I really don't have an excuse, just not too many exciting things going on. Off season is kind of boring.

Things I have done in the past couple of weeks:
Go to Boulder to visit and train with some of my favorite girls.

Sharon made fun of me when I wanted to take a picture of her taking a picture of me. But she really liked it, and she got to get a picture of me on her new camera! What more would someone want! Plus I get bored and a little silly on four hour rides. (and she likes to be silly with me)

Saturday Catherine Powers, Anne Samplonius, Sharon, and I all had a wonderful ride out to Carter Lake. It wasn't windy, it was warm out, no snow or rain, and did I mention its NOVEMBER!!! What is going on?!

Sunday it was even warmer! No leg warmers!!! Sharon missed out on this ride, but Whitney Henderson joined us!!!!

Since then I headed back to Durango. Training a lot, working in the afternoon, it's great weather, can't complain!!!

I had a great group of women to train with on Saturday and we had great weather again!!! Can't really complain about much. I didn't bring my camera so maybe next weekend I can take more pictures.

Can't wait till tomorrow. Last day of school for the week. I am more excited than the students. I am counting the hours.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007


Brandon and I took my nieces trick or treating tonight. It was a little rocky at first. The girls didn't really know trick or treating etiquette. We recognized this and quickly gave the girls a crash course before we hit the next house. They came home with so much candy, my pore dad and Margaret who have to deal with the sugar high and the sugar crash.
I always enjoy all of the kids dressing up. Subbing today at Miller Middle School was great. We ate candy, watched movies, carved pumpkins, and best of all figured out the circumference, volume, density, and mass of the pumpkins!!!
Savannah in her very cute lady bug outfit.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Church of the High Pines

Today I went on a wonderful ride with the church or the high pines.
Thanks guys for letting me tag along.

I have been in Durango for a week and the views never get old!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


I am in Durango now and rode yesterday and couldn't believe how beautiful it is here. How lucky am I to be able to train in such a gorgeous place. Catherine Powers and I on my last training ride in Boulder. I am really going to miss having so many people to train with. I guess I better make some cycling friends here in Durango.

Jody and Lee's wedding was a blast! Congrats to them! Jody, you looked absolutely beautiful. (and Lee you didn't look to bad either)

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

"It Could be worse"

So we headed up to West Palm Beach to visit Kristen and her husband Todd. We went out to dinner at a sports bar and apparently there motto is bigger is better. Kristen even got to watch sports on the TV while going to the bathroom. Here is a picture of Todd and his meal.

Either Todd is a very small guy or the sandwich is very large. You decide.
Then off to the cruise...More rain and this was no fun because it made the waves very large and made me very sick. Brandon and I were one of the few couples who made it to dinner that night. The next morning was overcast and raining, YEA MORE RAIN. We tried to stay positive and headed of the ship to the beach (one of the 6 couples leaving the cruise). Well, I am glad we did because it turned out to be a beautiful day. We hung out at the beach and pool all day. It was definitely one on the best days yet.

So our new motto is "it could be worse." We got to the new Ramada tonight and it was much nicer, no trailer park, "it could be worse!"

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Ft. Lauderdale + Ramada = Lame!

Brandon and I are on our vacation and it has been very interesting. The first two nights we stayed in Miami Beach and it was awesome. We stayed right by the beach in the art deco district. The hotel was really nice, with clean rooms and a roof top bar. We hung out with Miles (who just moved here from Denver) both nights. He showed us a great time. We ate great food, laid on the beach, road the cruiser bikes down the beach path, and went shopping. Brandon and I on the deck waiting for Miles before we headed out to a magazine premiere for Miles work. A lot of "fancy" people at this event.

We were very satisfied with our vacation so far...and then we headed to Ft. Lauderdale and a black cloud has been following us around ever sense.

I hate this place!!!!! We checked in to our hotel (this all inclusive 4 start resort - NOT) and the people were RUDE, the hotel is DISGUSTING, swimming pool BROKEN, fitness facility SUCKS, our 4 star resort view is a TRAILER PARK, and it's been RAINING so we can't go to the beach!

So my awesome teammate is going to rescue us! We are going to go to Kristin's house this afternoon and stay the night with her. We leave the tomorrow to go on our cruise and I can't wait.
I probably wont have Internet on the cruise, so I will blog when we get to Orlando in a couple of days.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Off season!

Off season came early this year because of my broken clavicle. Even though I had to miss a couple of races and I have to admit I have been a little jealous reading others blogs about racing. I am getting through it and having a good time.

Off Season List of stuff...

1. Brandon and I have got to spend a little more well needed quality time together.

2. Not riding the bike everyday I have got to enjoy other forms of exercise (a little less intense)

3. I went on a lot of hikes, which I didn't know how sore my hips and hip flexers could get.

4. Brandon said to my soreness, "well maybe you should walk more."

5. I am a cyclist, why walk?

6. Moved to Durango. Forgot how wonderful this place is!

7. Working a lot more, wow I didn't know how much time training took up.

8. Collar bone healing up. Can't wait to get back on the bike outside!

9. Need to find a job in Durango!

10. Sleeping on peoples couches is not that fun! Can't wait to move to Durango for good.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

New Home!

I haven't blogged lately because I have been soooo busy!!!! Brandon and I moved to Durango! The past week and a half has been crazy packing, driving a truck to Durango, unpacking, and driving back to Denver to finish up teaching.

My collar bone is healing up fast, hopefully I will be back riding outside in a couple of weeks. I can't wait to start training in Durango it will be great!

We are renting our condo in Denver. If you know anyone that might be interested here is a picture. We are renting it for $1250. We also have a posting on craigslist.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Pictures and Stuff

Here is our team at Al Toona. We had a great time and it was nice not to have to cook after such a long day on the bike!
Clay on one of our rides at the OTC Camp. Hope you are healing up!

Powers, TJ Rules, and I at the hospital after my accident. TR Rules was awesome she really helped me out.

My awesome Doctor! Told you we would put you on the blog!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Broken Again

I have been trying to blog for the past week or so and something is always going wrong. My computer was not working or I have accesses to Internet and then when I want to blog the wireless isn't working, my battery dies when I am finished with the blog and trying to publish, etc... So hopefully this time it's a go!

A lot has been happening:
1. Brandon got a job in Durango and we are moving!
2. I had a wonderful last few days at the OTC check out the blog on our team website
3. Started working at CCD (community College of Denver) again. I forget how much I really so like to teach. But I forgot how hot it is in a building with no AC.
4. Crashed along with half of the field at Crit Nationals and broke my clavicle
5. Put tissue under my arm pit to try to help the sweating. Having an arm in a sling and a room at about 80 degrees is not fun. The students looked at me like I was crazy!
6. Went to the doctors, more xrays
7. Got a CT scan. I have an acute fracture in the dense callus of the subclavicle
8. Still waiting to see what the doctor has to say about different options
9. Surgery or not?

I don't have any picture right now. I do have some great ones that I will try to post later.

Friday, August 10, 2007

I was very fortunate to be invited to the Women's Endurance Talent ID Camp at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs. Other "new" talents that were invited: (left to Right) Ashley Anderson, Me(Carmen McNellis), Carol Hutton, Susannah Pratt, Megan Guarnier, Marissa Asplund, and Shelly Olds.

Day one: This was, for most of us, our first or second time on the track. Bikes with no brake, no gears, and worst of all fix gear (no coasting, you can't stop pedaling). Well, I guess you could stop pedalling but the outcome would not be so pretty. Luckily we all survived a really long morning on the track. We had lunch and then went on a great ride through the Garden of The Gods. Later that afternoon (evening) we had a presentation by USADA, nutrition discussion, and meet with a sport Psych. They sure kept us busy for the first day.

Day two: We started of the morning by completing a timed flying 2k on the Track. For you who have no idea what that first sentence was saying...We had to go as hard as we could around the track for 6 laps. The flying part means we didn't start for a standing position, we had speed going into it. We had a little more down time today, which was nice because my legs didn't feel that great from being on the track for 2.5 hours the previous day. Dirk Friel spoke to us about Training Peaks and then we were off to the track again for evening races. Every Tuesday and Thursday they have evening races at the Velodrome in Colorado Springs. Jim gave us the opportunity to race and I was glad we did because it was a blast. I came out with one win and 2 seconds. Not to bad for my first night of track racing.

Day 3: This morning we did some testing in the lab. Not much fun. I was pretty tired from the night before doing so many efforts. I was able to get in a quick needed nap. This afternoon we had beautiful weather and road a nice 3hr ride through the Air Force Academy. Now it is time for bed, more testing tomorrow!

We have two more days left so tune in for another update!

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Tour de Toona is over!

Wow, I was to tired to blog when I was racing and finally feel a little recovered. I have never raced so hard and long in my life! I am glad it is over, but can't wait to go back next year.

Here are some pictures...
Team Time Trial. We were going so fast the picture is fuzzy. This was the very fun, but very hard. I wish we did more of these!
Eating dinner after one of the many hard stages! It was nice not have to cook for ourselves this night. We were all pretty tired after each stage.
Kat Carroll got 3rd!
Felicia was awarded the QOM Jersey!
Top ten - we finished up with a 4th and 9th place!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Day 2

Didn't think a 50 plus mile race could be so hard!

My legs didn't feel to great to begin with, not a good thing when you get to the first climb and discover it is a lot steeper than you thought it would be. I attacked right before the base of the climb, not knowing it was coming so soon. My attack didn't work as I was chased down and we headed up the steep pitches I got dropped fast. I hung on and got back into the caravan and back into the main Field. Legs burning, I stayed with this group until about 10k to go and finally didn't have enough to hang on.

Today was a rough day - definitely didn't feel my best today. Oh well, every day can't be a good day and it was bound to come. Hopefully tomorrow I can get my legs back and finish off a better day.

Sorry no picts

Monday, July 23, 2007

Altoona, PA - DAY ONE

WOW - who new a team time trial would be so hard. We finished up 4th today out of about 20 teams.

It's late and time to go to bed, more tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

No Broken Bones!

It's good to be home and it's especially good because I made it through with no broken bones! For more in depth racing updates at Nature Valley take a look at our team blog.

Carmen's Quick Recap:

Day 1: Travel day - got settle in with our awesome host family (the Johnsons) they have two beautiful little girls.
Day 2: St Paul Crit - Fast and a lot of crashes
Day 3: Cannon Falls RR - We got the Sprinter Jersey
Day 4: Time Trial and Minneapolis Crit - both flat and fast, kept the Sprinters Jersey
Day 5: Mankato RR - long day with defending the sprinters Jersey - hard circuit, but stayed tough for a 9th place finish. (Felicia took 3rd and Kristin took 5th)
Day 6: Stillwater Crit - dropped chain on 2nd lap - bike change on 3rd lap, race was over before it started. Chased hard, but pulled about 7 laps into it. But the good news NO BROKEN COLLAR BONE!!!!!

I will add photos later. Didn't take that many this go around.

Here is a picture from Paul Forsythe.

Monday, June 11, 2007


I am in Durango having a wonderful time training and visiting. I have had some really good rides this past week, but didn't bring my camera (sorry no picts). This last Sunday I road with a group of wonderful people. Thanks to Larry Goldstein I have a great picture.

This is at Bread (a wonderful bakery) before we took off on a beautiful ride up the valley.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Mt Hood

We are in Hood River racing Mt. Hood Stage Race. It is beautiful here but really, really HOT! I think yesterday it was mid 90's and today high 80's a big change from last years rain and snow.

Stage one: Pro log
This was a 3 mile time trial. Kat Carroll was 3rd, Kristen was 5th, Felicia was 9th, I was 14th, and Michelle was 28th. It was short and sweet - over before you new it.

Stage two: Road Race 86miles
This day was long and slow. No one wanted to work. Value Act did most of the work - they were in the leaders jersey. We had three hard efforts for the QOM (Queen of the Mountain). And then the down hill finish. This stage was bitter sweet. We won the QOM - we had awesome team work and set Felicia up perfect each time. Felicia did an awesome job of securing her win. The finish was a bit crazy. It was down hill sprint and we just ran out of people to do work to have a good finish. Didn't end up with any stellar results. But we do have the climbers jersey.

Stage Three: Circuit Race 66miles
This was an awesome day. We had great team work and had a bunch of fun. I attacked on the second lap and my teammate Kristen attacked and got away for 2.5 laps solo. She was amazing! She got caught 2k to go and then Kat Carroll and Felicia put in a great attack which they ended up one and two for the stage. We road smart and had a great plan from the start. Wonderful. We are now in the leaders jersey and climbing jersey. WOW what a day.

More to come....
We all took turns at different elementary school and did bike presentations. The kiddos were so cute!

Previewing the time trial course for Friday. It is a really gorges course!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007


So Brandon and I left Denver to have a little get a way and do some good training at altitude in Breckenridge. And wouldn't you know it, its SNOWING!!!!! F#$K, SOB!

Look it is snowing so hard you can't even see the mountains!

Well Brandon and I are going to brave the snow and ride. Then get massages for being so hard core. If it is snowing tomorrow I guess we will head back to Denver and ride from there.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Another Big WIN!

We had a great day today. It was a crit and our team road like super stars! Kat Carroll ended the stage race with a win with Sarah Caravella 2nd. This secured Kat's overall GC win.

I had a good day helping out the team and finishing with the main sprint group. My legs hurt and felt very tired but I did my job and felt like it was a successful weekend of racing.

Here are some pictures enjoy!