Sunday, January 25, 2009

dead of winter

Well, I just put some thought into the fact that I haven't posted anything lately. It has been quite cold here in the North East and I don't have all the gear that I would really like to have to push through the frigid temperatures. I will be prepared for next winter a lot better. I still have my goals that I will be working on. I will not give up on getting the most out of this that I can.

In other news, I got a spin bike from the local gym. It was an incredible deal so I thought that I would add it to my collection. I rode it today. I tell you what, there is nothing quite like a work out on a spin bike. Next to it is my Fuji set up on my trainer. (sorry about the bad picture, it is a little dark in the basement.) I am going to be training quite diligently for next season.

I have a bike that I am stripping down and redoing for my friends wife. She is graduating from college to become a doctor. We had been thinking of building a bike for her. We found a candidate and I will be posting the progress here over the coming months.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

first winter (snowy) commute

Wednesday I did my bike commute. Let me start by saying my commute by bike is partially done by bus. I live about 35 miles away from where I work. Sometimes I take the bus because it is slightly cheaper than driving. It is not faster, though. It takes about twice as long than driving myself. Anyways, I ride my bike a couple of miles to the bus stop. I then throw my bike on the rack and relax until I get to Burlington. Then I get on my bike and ride the rest of the way to my shop. It is about six miles each way of riding on a direct route. Therefore, if I commute two days a week, I will get 24 miles a week. In 12.5 weeks I will hit 300 miles. That is my goal for this winter. Quick math suggests that I will be into Spring before then so I have to supplement my riding on weekends around town. I really want to achieve this goal.

Back to the ride. I got into Burlington and we had a steady moderate snowfall going on. I was a little anxious yet excited. I love riding and this was going to be a unique experience. I was very impressed and pleased with the performance of the studded tires. They have an aggressive enough tread on them to do a good job when there is a bunch of crud on the road. I had quite a range of conditions to deal with. I traveled main roads as well as some secondary roads and the tires seemed to adapt to each very well. I found myself in only a couple of predicaments with the coffins on wheels. Mostly, they seemed to be courteous and cautious of my presence. I got blasted with some crud at one point when a car passed me. I realized that there was no malicious intent nor was there anything that I could of done about it. I looked down and saw my legs covered in muck with the consistency of pancake batter. Winter battle wounds!

Another observation I made was that I need to go to a 19 or 20 tooth rear cog, (I am riding fixie if you didn't know) because the 17t is a little tall for foul weather. I have to get out of the saddle on some of the climbs and then I easily loose traction in the snow. I still haven't done anything about switching to flat bars and I still want to give it a try. Hopefully I can give it a shot here soon. I would like to get some better winter gear, but winter riding gloves are going to be a must. Better luck next year! Get out there, you will be glad you did.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Happy New Year! It is 2009

Finally the craziness of work schedules have past. I will now be able to start commuting by bike a couple days a week. I hope that I can get myself use to the idea of riding a bike in weather that is in the teens. I am still wanting to switch my bars over to flat from drop, but I will have to do that in a couple of weeks. I will try to write on the days that I ride to share my experiences. I have to remember that I made a personal goal to ride 300 miles this winter. I am sure that I can do it. I also want to take some spin classes this winter to keep my endurance up as well as ride my trainer down stairs. I don't want to be a fat cyclist this year. Maybe I can earn an "s" this winter and put it in the "fat" and make it "fast". :) Don't be evil. Be nice and ride often!