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Sunday, December 28, 2008

Stater Brothers Road Trip

My son and I rode our bikes to get groceries at Stater Brothers. I hope that my son sees the bike as more than just a plaything but also as a means of conveyance. We often ride our bikes on errands of short distance from our home. My hope is that it will just seem natural for him to jump on the bike and get groceries and more. I made Chicken Teriyaki crockpot style.


Thank you Nathan Sports for helping me keep my son safe with the Flash Vest.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas Day Century

Brandy had the idea (crazy idea yeah I said it) of going on a Christmas Day Century on our tandem. It had been raining all night and it was drizzling in the morning. I fought the idea as much as I could. I wanted to stay home snuggle and stay dry. But she can be pretty convincing and cute.

I dragged my feet long enough and we headed out just before 12pm. There was a light drizzle as we left the warmth and security of our home. We turned south on the Pacific Coast Hwy and then up San Joaquin Hills towards Newport Coast Dr. On our descent on Newport Coast Dr the rain was coming down. So less than 15 miles into the ride we were thoroughly soaked. I was cautious descending and kept it under 30 mph. We continued south on the coast towards Dana Point and then headed inland on Golden Lantern/Moulton Pkwy. There are a ton of rollers and they get your attention on the tandem. A few more turns here and there and then we were in Santiago Canyon.

From a distance, before making the turn that committed us to Santiago Canyon, I asked Brandy "Are you sure you want to go into those dark ominous clouds" and she said yes. Santiago Canyon wasn't too bad. But as we neared Silverado Canyon I asked again if she wanted to go into the dark clouds. She left it up to me. Later she confided in me that she left the Silverado Canyon decision up to me so she could blame me later. Cute huh?

I of course was thinking if we are already out here we might as well climb Silverado Canyon. On the climb up Silverado Canyon she makes the proclamation that she is LOVING THIS RIDE! Well a few minutes later the sky opened up with very heavy rain. The downpour was brief but long and heavy enough to thoroughly soak us again. As we descended Silverado Canyon she was no longer "loving this ride" and it was time to get home.

We had a couple of things to consider though. First I was having trouble shifting the front derailuer and getting the big chain ring was very difficult. We actually stopped and I manually put the chain on the big ring. We would ride home in the big ring the last ~30 miles. Second we had to make it home before our NiteRider Minewt Dual's battery would run out. We were wet, cold, hungry and psychologically done. It was time to hammer the last 25 miles home in the dark.

We made it home without incident. It sucked but I'm glad we did it. Our first century on the tandem is done. By the way, Brandy was not aware that after being soooo cold she should not take a hot shower to warm up. The itchy feeling she got was so painful she had a little freak out. So she learned another lesson. Cool water then lukewarm then hot when thawing out. The first lesson of course was when given the option of a nice warm cozy bed on a holiday take it. It's not so glamorous to spend 7 plus hours in the rain and cold when not racing.



Sunday, December 21, 2008

Glendora Ridge Road

I rode up to Cow Canyon Saddle today. The weather was beautiful! Plenty of snow and ice on the road. Would have been a lot smarter on at least a cross bike. Oh well it was a blast.

As far as training I can't remember what my PR is for Glendora Mountain Road. So I guess I will call it sub 49 mins and try to beat that from now on.

GMR to post:
Duration: 48:13
Work: 674 kJ
TSS: 97.4 (intensity factor 1.101)
Norm Power: 242 Approx 3.4 w/kg
VI: 1.04
Pw:HR: 9.49%
Pa:HR: -7.81%
Distance: 8.356 mi

Avg 233 watts
Heart Rate 184 bpm
Cadence: 76 rpm
Speed: 10.4 mph
Pace 5:47 min/mi

Monday, December 15, 2008

If at first you don't succeed...

do it again. I did the same century I did last week. I suffered pretty bad last week and I had to go back and redeem myself. I was 22 minutes (total time) faster this week. Some of it is due to leaving the house at 4:14 am instead of 8am as I did last week. But mainly because I had better legs. It was amazing how much fitness I had lost in 8 weeks. What I am most happy with is the non-rolling time to total time is just shy of 8 mins. This route is quite urban so considering all the potential for traffic signals, I'm please with only 8 mins.

I also took the time to route it in or you can find the route sheet here. Brandy created the route and it is a pretty darn good one. Lot's of bike lanes and there are opportunities to take on extra climbs to add more gain.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Floyd at the shop

Floyd Landis stopped by today. I told him he got a raw deal! I also told him that I still believed he was clean!! He said he appreciated my sentiments. I am so excited to see him race again!!!!

My Furnace Creek 508 Videos...

I have been working on and off on videos from my 2008 Furnace Creek 508 Solo event since late October. I have run into complications with RAM on my computer. To spare you the details basically I don't have enough RAM to run Windows Movie Maker. The project runs slow and saving it to a movie isn't possible. I have split the movie into four parts. They are below and also on youtube. I'm looking forward to your comments.

Coming soon I will have the movie on my website as one whole movie and not in 4 parts.





Sunday, December 7, 2008

First Century since Furnace Creek 508

I went out for a century. I hadn't done a century since Furnace Creek 508 Oct 4. As many of you know my right thumb was fractured on Oct 30. I was off the bike for 3 weeks straight. Then I did 4 rides here and there with a total less than 150 miles in the last 3 weeks. It was not pretty but I got it done. My legs were shot around 70 miles and I had to limp home. It was 104 miles with only 5600 feet and I was pooped. Oh and I have also gained 6 lbs in the last 6 weeks.

Entire workout (137 watts):
Duration: 6:44:40 (7:03:41)
Work: 3202 kJ
TSS: 462 (intensity factor 0.843)
Norm Power: 186
VI: 1.36
Pw:HR: 15.56%
Pa:HR: -4.27%
Distance: 103.917 mi
Min Max Avg
Power: 0 697 137 watts
Heart Rate: 94 194 156 bpm
Cadence: 29 174 79 rpm
Speed: 0 40.9 16.0 mph
Pace 1:28 0:00 3:45 min/mi
Hub Torque: 0 411 68 lb-in
Crank Torque: 0 904 149 lb-in

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Tandem Ride

Brandy and I took the tandem out for a short ride. 34 miles and ~1900 feet of climbing . We did two repeats on a local 1.5 mile climb called Newport Coast Dr (1700 feet in 12 miles). We are new tandem riders and it was quite humbling to climb a 6% at about 8 mph. When I got home I realized that the 34 miles on the tandem felt harder than when I do the same route by myself. I found that interesting. Interesting because we plan on doing our first century on the bike the x-mas holiday and our first Ultra on January 3rd, the San Diego 200km Brevet. You can also find information on the event website here.

Friday, December 5, 2008

I commuted I commuted I commuted...

Yes it is the little things that make me riding my bike. This morning Brandy and I woke up at 0420. Yeah really 420. We left the house at 0500. I had a short 15 mile commute to the Irvine train station. While Brandy was getting a few extra miles before work. I rode my fixie since I still can't use my right hand for much.

Everything was going fine until I stopped to get coffee at Starbucks. When I walked in I saw a longer line than I usually see. I asked who was at the end of the line and was surprised that everyone had already ordered. It was 0608 and and I had 12 minutes to catch the train and I was only 1.5 blocks away. So I ordered my venti Americano with room. I figured I had plenty of time.

While waiting for my coffee a young lady asked me if that was my bike outside. I replied yes. Then she asked if it was "fixed" and I replied again in the affirmative. I found out her name was Heather and that she used to commute when she lived only 5 miles from work but now she has to drive up to Los Angeles. I left her my email and blog and said maybe we can ride sometime.

Meanwhile my coffee was still in the cue. I started to sweat whether I was going to catch my train. Finally my coffee was ready and I scooted down the road. Only to get within 100 yds from the train station and see the train rolling away. I panicked at first and then thought I can take the Amtrak. So I missed the 0620 Metrolink to Oceanside but the Amtrak would be at the station at 0704 and I would ride it to Solana Beach.

I was 30 minutes late for work but in the end I think it was worth it. I took a lot of video and created a little movie. It is rough with no editing and no finishing. My main goal of the "movie" is to show my appreciation for the beautiful weather and beautiful scenery that we have in Southern California. It was 50 degrees at 0500 this morning with clear skis. Just a gorgeous morning to be on my bike. We are truly blessed to live here!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Commuting and Crashing?

Tomorrow, Friday, I will commute to and from work for the first time since October 30th. I have not commuted because of a badly fractured thumb. The pain on some of my short weekend rides has just been bearable. I would like to get back on the bike real soon. My first event of the season is less than 30 days away, January 3rd. I will commute to the Irvine Train Station from Huntington Beach (~15 miles), take the train to Oceanside (~35 miles), and then ride the rest of the way to work (~15 miles).

The next segment of this post is something I fear every day, especially when commuting at night and pre-dawn hours. I pass a lot of construction zones and I am extra cautious of repairs that have been done to the road, in particular those in the bike lane. I fear going down just because a road crew was too lazy to do the job right THE FIRST TIME!

I received an email from Kam. Kam is a good friend and former teammate. While on a well established training ride, 15 years running, two cyclists were badly injured because of shoddy road work. The details are sketchy but one rider has a broken collarbone the other sustained multiple abrasions. In essence, a trench was dug out for a repair, but the patch work was less than ideal. In fact, it was downright dangerous. There is still the potential for other cyclists to be injured if they are unaware. Below is a brief description of the location.

From an email:

The location of the rut is on North Torrey Pines road heading north just
past Salk Institute.

Here is a slide show from Kam's website

Find more photos like this on The Cycling Network

Here is my concern. Motorists drive too close to the bike lane. Many times there are ruts, crevices and debris in the bike lane. As cyclists we respect and try to coexist with motorists and stay in the bike lane as much as possible. But sometimes there are things like 3" wide ruts in the bike lane and the only decision is to exit the bike lane or face certain injury. I wish there was a way to help motorists understand that our sudden and seemingly erratic swerving is simply to avoid crashing
and bodily injury. As cyclists, we take risks and make judgment calls in a fraction of a second. It is never our intention to play "chicken" with a Hunmmer!

Road crews and their employers need to be held accountable for the work they perform. Our safety depends on it!!