Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Long distance Cycling Is Just Puzzle

I read this article posted in my Google+ Long distance Cycling Community.  

Touching the Void: Glimpsing the Mind of a Serial Cyclist
I totally agree with the concept that long distance cycling is a puzzle solving event.  I did the same puzzle solving when I was training for my first 100k trail run.

This article helps me as I think about my longest ride that I have ever done which was 145 miles.  I did it last year on 3/14/2014.  I rode from my house to the Gulf of New Mexico.  My Garmin's battery died, my phone battery died and my light battery died.  I could have gone another 50 miles as I was not tired, but my equipment ran out of juice.

My longest ride on this bike was 145 miles
I did not plan on getting hit by a car three days later. I am planning another ride to the coast.  I have revised some of my equipment.  I have lights that will always burn as long as I can peddle.  I have two spare batteries for  my phone.  I can charge my Garmin and phone during the day using my dynamo.  I also have a bike that can do more miles than I can at the moment.

I love just riding point to point. On my last trip it was hard for my wife to find where I was when I got to the coast.  Now I have a standing rule that I will ride to a hotel where we have a reservation and she will always know where to meet me.

I also like riding and supporting myself so there is  more puzzle solving.  I will complete my first double century in 2015.  looking to ride from my house in Albany, GA to Panama City, FL soon.

Here are links to all parts of the article
Going Long – Part 1
Going Long – Part 2

Going Long – Part 3.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Winter Training Series #8 1/24/15

Today's ride was a learning experience as usual. Velominati Rule Rule #5// Harden The Fuck Up. With 15 to 25 mile an hour winds from the NW it was a tough ride for me keeping up with the race team.
The route stated out going north and then turned directly into the wind.  Today I lasted about 30 miles before I was really wiped out.  Well not really wiped out, just wiped out enough to know that if I was going to ride anymore miles I was going to have to slow down.

Michele Moulton and her husband Kent Wheeler of course would have none of this nonsense from me.  The team waited for me just before Bronwood and a course change was made to abort the 100 mile ride and just head towards Dawson.  I made it to Dawson well behind the group and met them at the store where they were refueling.  I did the same.

With the tailwind the group headed out from Dawson on HYW 32 and I decided that I was going to just go full out again until I ran out of steam.  Now that I look at my Garmin results I am not surprised that the group was pushing into the mid 20's MPH.  I faded just before the Lee County line.  I needed to just roll back into Albany at my own pace.

The way I look at it I am enrolled in the School of Cycling.  I am learning how to breath even though my muscles where telling me to slow down thanks to Kent's coaching.  Today was a difficult ride, but I never like doing things that are easy.  It is good to ride with a group that demonstrates how to ride.  There is nothing like having examples to follow when you are learning how to do something.

So after I slowed down I decided to take a few pictures.
No corn yet.  HWY 32 between Dawson and Palmrya Road.
The pictures below were taken at Palmyra road and Oak Ridge Road intersection.  This oak tree is wider at the trunk than my bike.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Seven Cycles 622 SLX at 838 miles

This is my bike.  I took my first ride on it 12/2/2014. To date I have 838.83 miles on the bike.  I did not ride a road bike from March 2014 until December 2014 due to a kiss with a car.

The more miles I put on this bike the more I like it.  This is the first bike I have owned with a compact crank and compact bars.  As with all seven Cycles, this is a custom bike.  I have toe torso of a man 5' 3" and the legs of a man 6' 1".  My last bike was a custom Serotta.

The improvements on this bike are the titanium lugs and chain stays and carbon tubing.  The bike is light and fast while absorbing road noise.  The bike has Shimano Ultegra components with disc brakes.  Front hub has a dynamo and wheels are Belgium.  I will get around to more component details later.

What I want to write about is how the bike is feeling on the road and how I am evolving as a cyclist.  when I was working with Matt Cole at Podium Multisport in Atlanta, GA on selecting a bike I told him that I wanted a bike that I could ride all day and night, but also a bike that I could ride with my local bike club.  This bike hits the mark, it is fast and comfortable on long rides.

The saddle is what has taken me almost 800 miles to get use to.  I have been riding on a Sell SMP Pro and at first I thought I was going to take it back before my 30 day trial.  I decided to keep it because I have been out of the saddle for almost nine months due to a kiss from a car.  Getting my butt in gear has caused me to change my riding style.  Having a bike that fits perfectly helps this process.  

While I was recovering from the accident I watch a lot of videos on YouTube on the Global Cycling Network.  I watch an episode on riding out of the saddle.  I learned that riding out of the saddle was not just for making it up a steep hill, but it was a great way to get your blood circulating.  Down here in SW Georgia is is really flat.  It is not like Oregon where I lived for 20 years.  you could not ride anywhere in Portland without riding over a steep hill.  So down here I have started to drop into a low gear and stand up and cycle up any incline.  This method of training on my bike commute is helping me rest my butt and also helping me develop the skills for sprinting when i ride with the PCP race team.  

Yeah, I know what you are thinking, am I that fast?  no I am not that fast, yet, so this is why I am training to ride fast up hills. I am tired of getting dropped when there is a hill on the winter training rides that I do with the PCP Race team.  So I have a bike now that allows me to change the way that I ride.  The seat is feeling better every mile that I ride.  I am getting out of the saddle and riding on my hoods with more control when I am sprinting.  i can ride in the drops with ease for long distances.

Having a bike that really fits is the key to being comfortable as you ride.

Photos of my bike.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Thursday Night Ride Home

Pretoria, Georgia
I usually stop here at the intersection of 8 Mile Road and Leary Road to do equipment changes.  Tonight I was riding hard and started to sweat even though it was not really warm.  When I sweat and it starts to get cold I always want to put on a jacket so that I do not get really cold as the air temperature drops and I am wet.

This intersection is Pretoria, Georgia which at one point in time had a purpose besides being a place for me to get off the highway to take a break from cycling.

Good morning farm

Watching the sun rise.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Battery Free At Last - Version 1.0Part 2

Version 1.0

Version 2.0
I was not pleased with the height of the head light.  I still have several brackets on my shopping list, but I still want to try positions with the parts I have.  I changed the angle of the bracket to lower the head light.   I like this position because it will allow me to put a small bag on my bars.  In this new position the light will be in front of the bag.