Thursday, January 21, 2010

How much Training

How much training? If touring is about getting in lots of miles per day then I am not a tourist.. I remember part of a tour on the Oregon coast where
after breaking camp we moved out to the main road then turned into the next
state park a whole mile away.. It was a park that was not to be missed,
that to me is the fun of bicycle touring.

I have also done three days in a row where each days mileage was just over 100.
The daylight hours were long and my body did not protest the hours in the saddle. Properly fueled and hydrated with a callused butt I can ride long or short miles.
I find that the miles I put in before lunch are usually the same amount I hit after a nice lunch break.
Ride 35 miles before lunch then after my little afternoon
siesta I will easily crank out another 35. It is usually how I pace my day.

Hills ! God I hate long climbs. This is where I really spend most of my time training. Standing up and grinding out that long 10 block hill over and over again then moving on to another hard climb. I know I can do the miles over the flats it those steep to the moon climbs that darken my day. I have never found a low enough gear that allows me to spin my way to the top. So I learned to stand up and climb, using those clip in pedals to help pull on the up stroke.

But I always remember the bike guru who told me that there was never a hill that he couldn't walk up.. In the words of Carl the Groundskeeper "so I have that going for me.."

Sunday, January 10, 2010

How Cold Was It?

Riding in the winter is always a fun time. What was once a sweet downhill run in the warm breeze of a summer day now is slim fingers of arctic air looking to numb its way to my heart. But there is nothing like a below freezing day to get your heart rate up and the blood pumping. Lots of layers and plenty of zippers seem to be the proper method to regulated body heat.
Downhill I am the Michelin man fat and happy in my cocoon of warmth.
Uphill I look like a four year old who got dressed all by himself.

This winter I added a biking skull cap to my collection of arctic wear. It has proven itself as a great way to keep my head warm. I am just missing the long robe. For with this cap and the robe I could pass for a novice Tibetan monk.

My new bike just got a mini tune-up from Discover Bicycles( in Hood River.
The red pumice stone that the city uses to sand the icy streets eats brake pads. Changing pads after only four months of riding was a first for me. Entirely glad that I did it as a little lube here and there, a few bolts needing a slight tightening, replace the pads, check the chain stretch and best of all having a competent bike mechanic give the whole bike a once over. I left the shop with that warm glow that a nicely tuned bike gives. Cold what cold…..

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Most men pursue pleasure with such breathless haste that they hurry past it.‏

Friday, January 1, 2010

So today was a four wheel drive road in my two wheel drive world.
A little snow starting a few days ago pushed me off my bike and onto my indoor trainer. But the last day of the year gave a ray of hope for the coming New Year. Snow in the morning turned to drizzle then to a full fledged winter rain by late afternoon. Just like seeing or not seeing the shadow on groundhog day being able to ride on the first day of the year has always been the indicator of a great year of riding.

Fully dressed to resemble the Michelin man I rode off to work. All I can say is I hope the the snowplows get to my road before the end of the day or it is going to be a long push, uphill, in the snow, home