Friday, June 27, 2008

More Bikes

Over the past couple of weeks I've noticed a lot more bikes around Liberty. A lot of them look like antiques that have been put back in use after years of languishing in a shed or garage. Gas prices are having an effect on how people get around. Too many of these riders are either riding on the sidewalk or the wrong side of the road. Part of me wants to say something to them, but I don't. I don't think it would do any good, and maybe they'll figure it out if they become more comfortable.

Yesterday after work it was 97 degrees and the air quality was orange, so I went for a 30 mile ride. Didn't seem too bad to me.

I saw Pearl Izumi's new argyle shorts last week so I ordered a pair along with the socks and a black argyle jersey (already had the white one). UPS said they delivered the package today at 9:15. Not to my house, they didn't. CJ and both kids were home at that time, too, so we would have known. UPS is putting a trace on the package, hope they find it, but I wanted to wear the stuff this weekend.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Still Flat

Since Monday wasn't a ride day I took the flat tire off, found the hole in the tube and patched it. I looked at the hole in the tire and it didn't look too bad, so I remounted everything and inflated the tire and looked at it again. This time a little piece of glass was protruding from the little cut in the tire. I pried it out and put the wheel back on the bike, thinking all was well. I shouldn't think.

Tuesday I went for my ride. I noticed about halfway through that the back felt like the tire was soft. That couldn't be, so I didn't bother to check it, just kept going. Towards the end of the ride I seemed to be using more energy than normal, but I ended up with 35 miles with an average of 17.5. Not too bad. When I got off I felt the rear tire. It was soft. About 40 psi. Still leaking. I took the tire off, and sure enough, that little piece of glass had put a tiny puncture in the tube. I also noticed a spot on the tire sidewall where all the cords had been cut through, probably from hitting something with the tire soft, so the tire was scrap too. But... my door prize from the first Tour De Lions in '05 had been a Vittoria folding race tire - size 25-622. Didn't fit the old bike, but it sure fits the new one. I'm glad I kept it.

I had to work in High Point today, so on the way back to Liberty I stopped off at Performance bike and picked up a little patch kit and an Innovations Second Wind CO2/hand pump to put in my seat bag. Now I won't have to call CJ to come get me if I get a flat.

Monday, June 23, 2008

NC State Games

We went to the bike races, and I took my bike along, just in case - although my mind was pretty well made up to do it.
These are the CAT 1,2, & 3's

Into the first turn.
Novices (me too)
The start of the novice group. There were only four of us. Right before the start the rider second from the right rode over a piece of glass and flatted his rear tire. He managed to get it fixed in time. I had been warming up in the same area and figured I was lucky not to have the same thing happen. When we got to the first turn and the back of the bike tried to slide out from under me I knew I had not been so lucky. My tire wasn't flat, but it was well on it's way. I finished the first lap, pulled into the pits, grabbed a tire pump and re inflated the tire. I spun it, and found the hole by feeling the air escaping. The referee said it was a long way to go to do just one lap, but I was thinking that the tire had to have been leaking for several minutes before the start, it had gotten me around once, so why not try another lap? I mean, maybe I'd have to stop at the end of each lap and pump it up, but I could at least try. So, off I went. That lap the tire felt pretty good, so I kept going. I didn't want to get lapped, if at all possible. The next lap the bike started feeling a little unstable through the corners, but not too bad, so I kept going for the last lap. The tire was really low, and I had to be slow through the corners, but I made it to the end, and almost caught the next rider. Anyway, I finished. I don't think there was 15 psi left in the tire at the end. I want to do it again, with air in my tires.

OK, I was the only one in my age group, so I "won" a medal. I'm not sure how I feel about that - I only beat the people that didn't show up. Next time, though....

Friday, June 20, 2008


The only bike races I've ever seen have been on TV, and I've never even seen a criterium, but Sunday there is one in Greensboro - the NC State Games. I've been thinking about it. Do I race or not? I almost think maybe I should just go and watch, but then, I think, if I'm going to be there, why not enter? I have raced cars, so I do have some idea what is involved, and it's a 20 minute race with other novices, so....

I've got another day to make up my mind, but a race might be fun.
Any advice?

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Temperature Thing

I don't understand this temperature thing. The ride Sunday morning was awful. Last night I got out at about 5:50. The thermometer in town said 100, and the one in the car on the way home said 101. You would think it was pretty hot, but the ride was nice. I mean, there was a lot of sweat, and about 70 ounces of liquid got consumed, but it did not feel too hot at all. I definitely have to rethink the early morning, beat the heat weekend rides. It was almost 8:00 by the time I got home after another 33.16 miles. It is nice to have it light so late.

Sunday, June 08, 2008


122 - The number of dollars I spent on gas Friday (filled the motorcycle and Taurus) and Saturday (filled the Camry). I can't afford this. Friday I had to make the 35 mile trek to the High Point office just to get my paycheck since they "forgot" to send it over to Liberty. I took the motorcycle, so it only cost me about six bucks.

Big number - use your imagination - amount spent on groceries Saturday morning at Sam's club. I don't want to put it in writing, that will make it too real. Wow, have prices gone up.

101 - I didn't bother with the picture of the thermometer. It said 101 when I rode Saturday evening. It dropped to 96 by the end of my ride. Hot.

33.26 - miles ridden Saturday.

86 - Temperature Sunday morning at the start of my ride. At 7:50. I thought I'd get out early and beat the heat. Even though the temperature was lower, it felt much hotter. I don't know if it was the humidity or the intensity of the sun as it came up, but it took everything out of me. I need to get used to this heat!

29.83 - Sunday's miles, 17.4 mph. I cut the ride short.

One thing both CJ and I noticed Saturday morning on our trip to Sam's club was the lack of traffic on the interstate in Greensboro. It's usually very heavy on Saturday morning, and Sam's Club is always packed. Sam's club was almost deserted. It looks like no one can afford anything except gas.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Warming Up

I think summer is here. This was during Thursday's ride at 5:50 in the evening on my first trip through Liberty. My second time through, 24 miles later, it had dropped to 96. I finished up with 27.5 @17.1. It really doesn't feel that hot as long as I keep moving.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008


I can be a little indecisive, but so can the weather. Yesterday there was a 50% chance of thunderstorms, some severe, and sure enough, around 4:30 they started popping up all around, along with the warnings. I looked at the weather map and figured riding was out. It was spitting a little rain on the ride home, so that seemed to seal it. But... a few minutes after getting home the sky started to lighten, so, on with the TV to check out the local weather. The storms had all dissipated and the weather guy was saying it looked like we might see a few showers, but that was it. So I changed my mind and went for a ride. I didn't get started until 6, but I got in 20 miles at 17.5. I also got rained on while the sun was shining on me - that's pretty indecisive too, I guess. I hope I can get back on my schedule of Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday now.

I found this on my ride. Now I can take a break and watch the traffic roll by.


Monday, June 02, 2008


Sunday's ride - same temp and same humidity as Saturday's, but less wind, plus it was a bit longer at 49.45 miles (why didn't I go that other .55 and get 50?). Looks like summer has arrived.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

5 MM

Since the 5mm adjustment of my cleats worked out so well, I thought I'd try some other adjustments. I started with my seat height. I raised the seat that 5 little millimeters. It didn't feel too high, and my knees were still slightly bent at the bottom of the pedal stroke. I rode 33 miles, and the results of that adjustment was a lot of lower back pain and the saddle exerting pressure in places I don't want more pressure. This was all last Thursday, by the way. Before yesterdays ride I lowered the seat that 5mm and then rode 36 miles. No back pain, no pressure. I think I'm through adjusting.