Thursday, November 19, 2009

40- NEW PB with the Schwinn- 27 Minutes Flat! And then... HUBRIS!! Two Flats. In the Dark. In the Rain.

Success!! Day 40

Weather: 48 deg F. cool, a little headwind
Time I left my house: Late (surprise) 8:23 am
Time I arrived at work: 8:52 am
Distance: 8.08 miles
Avg. Speed: 18
Max Speed: 25
Time: 27.00 min.

Pre-game: I scrambled out early enough, but the sitter was chatting up a storm, which means I got out later than expected. All is forgiven…look at the new time!

Nice ride today- It wasn’t too cold. After a day with my Roubaix last week (35 miler in the Bayville area, which was awesome) I took a little rest but my legs are better for it. I topped my avg. and my time today as a PB. Which was good because I was running a bit late. I noticed my waterbottle has been leaking, don’t know if that warrants another bottle… Gatorade got all over my Roubaix last week. Not sure why that happens.

Hopefully I can ride again this weekend as it pays back in huge dividends. Of course my night ride home will be shite but who cares.

UPDATE: The ride home. FAIL

Weather: 53 deg. F cool, RAIN, a little headwind
Distance: 8.49 miles
Avg. Speed: 8
Max Speed: 25
Time: 1.01

So, it actually rained today, and everyone was concerned (as usual) of my ride home. I assured them of my dayglo rain jacket (which I took off later… wasn’t raining) and my lights. It was going pretty nice when two miles left, I start feeling a little ‘bouncy’ with each pedal stroke. I pull over and notice my rear wheel flat. Crap. Then I hear a hissing noise. My front wheel as well… flat. I had only one extra tube and a patch kit, although I couldn’t bring myself to patch in the dark and rain, only being two miles from home. So… on my 2 mile walk home, I decided this:

1. Always bring two tubes
2. Get new tires. Ultragatorskins or Armadillos or Marathons Plus
3. Start driving again when it rains. (joke… well not really, I was so p___ssed last night.

I placed my issues on bf… so it will be interesting to see what pops up. I know it’s a necessary evil that comes with bike commuting, but two flats at the same time?? In the dark?? C’mon!!

Friday, November 6, 2009

39-Addidas Adistar Blizzard Jacket

Success!! Day 39

Weather: 39 deg F. cold, a lot of headwind and crosswinds
Time I left my house: Early 8:09 am
Time I arrived at work: 8:48 am
Distance: 8.07 miles
Avg. Speed: 16.4
Max Speed: 22.7
Time: 29.39 min.

Pre-game: Ah Fridays. It was chilly, so I wore my Performance tights and my Addidas Adistar Blizzard jacket. Got out later than my usual Fridays, since I had to bundle up, but it was still waay earlier than my mid-week scramble.

Nice ride today- I have to say the Adistar Blizzard Jacket rocks- it was a little nippy out there with a wind chill of about 34 deg. F., but I was sweating to the oldies in that thing. By the time I got to work, I had to unzip and cool off. It definitely kept the wind at bay and I didn’t feel cold at all. It’s got a ‘racer’ fit, so it’s snug in the right places (not letting any air anywhere) and ventilated on the underarms and back. I got it from Performance during one of their sales, so I got if for under $100. Well worth every penny. I believe it’s also waterproof. The only thing is that I’m not used to looking like a character from Tron or V. It’s got some shoulder pads and a weird reflective design on the back (which is good for the nighttime). I wonder how long I could go this winter. I imagine I’ll try to set my MTB up as a winter commuter, with my snowboard gear (helmet, goggles, jacket, etc.). But if the roads are icy or aren’t plowed with enough space, I’m not sure it’s wise to go out. I do have a trainer and a DVD set for winter spinning to keep my legs and my cardio up to par, but it’s not the same.

The only thing I have to see is where to dry my tights and jacket… I have a cubicle and not an office so my own private closet is out of the question, so I’ll have to hunt the communal closet space around the third floor.

UPDATE: The ride home. AT NIGHT!!

Weather: 47 deg.F cooler, a bit of headwind
Distance: 8.49 miles
Avg. Speed: 14.1
Max Speed: 22
Time: 36.11

Nothing much to report other than I’m coming back to this after some time- now that I look at the numbers, I was as slow as molasses. I guess the nighttime ride was a bit blustery and cold, and I can’t really see the computer at night, so I just concentrate on pedaling, though I can’t tell how fast. Anyway, it was shite. The jacket still rocks.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

38-I Am the Night Rider! 200 Miles on the Schwinn!

Success!! Day 38

Weather: 42 deg F. much cooler, a little headwind and crosswinds
Time I left my house: Really Late! 8:25 am
Time I arrived at work: 9:00 am
Distance: 8.07 miles
Avg. Speed: 17.0
Max Speed: 24.1
Time: 28.39 min.

Pre-game: Scrambling to get out- thought I had a good time going, but when I left I looked at my watch and saw that it was 8:25! I blame the cold weather and bundling up. I also had to get my reflective Amphipod vest in my panniers so people can see me tonight. First night ride!!

Not a bad ride today, although I was hurting from yesterday’s workout in the gym- I made the mistake of doing squats with some heavy working sets (I’m trying to add some muscle to my girlish figure) and some other compound exercises. I did have some success before with my mass gaining workouts in the past, where I went up 20 lbs. (albeit, I put on some fat as well, which is usually the case) to 185. It will be interesting to see how this works with my cycling regimen as the workout notes that cardio should be a minimum as to not burn as many calories. Alright for you non-gymrat types…. Seque to: So my legs weren’t up to par today, although I still made it under 30 minutes with 17 avg.

UPDATE: The ride home. AT NIGHT!!

Weather: 47 deg.F cooler, a bit of headwind
Distance: 8.47 miles
Avg. Speed: 15.2
Max Speed: 24.1
Time: 33.23

It took a little more time to get my Amphipod reflective vest on and turning on the lights, but when I got going, it was pretty cool. I kept the PB Phase 1 Headlight on blink most of the way and the Superflash was on the whole ride. The headlight on blink was almost like a laser-gun- I felt like an X-wing fighter shooting down some Imperial Tie-Fighters (for all you Star Wars fans out there…) and as I got faster, it really was some show. I’m curious to know what cars see with me coming down in the side/rear view mirrors. This is the kind of strobe light that’s prone to give people seizures. That said, I don’t think folks had a problem seeing me. The cool thing about the headlight was the opportunity for the light to shine on the side- two little slits for the light- so people can also see me from the side. The only thing were the shady spots when there was no light and I had the blink on… it was sufficient enough, but I felt I needed more. I had to wait for either another car’s headlights or for some more streetlights to come on. The thing I like about night riding are seeing all the cars lights in the distance on other parkways and roadways … usually from the perspective from the top of an overpass. But when it was silent, no cars around, just me and the blinking light and the road in the dark, sort of surreal feeling. I wonder what it’s like to go riding on a trail at night, which would probably more of the same. Such a cool feeling.

Kudos to Planet Bike for their lights!!