Tuesday, July 29, 2008


I've actually had people ask why I have "biking running and swimming" and the blog has had a complete lack of running/swimming posts.

Well, that changes today.

So, my boss (and his boss) are both triathaletes. I've got cycling buddies who are triathaletes. Most of the guys at the LBS are triathaletes. And of course, triathaletes get to buy more cool toys. So, I signed up.

I signed up for a Triathalon July 20, 2008. You may have noticed that date came and passed with no tri completed. See, there are a lot of reasons for that. The diabetes flare up over the winter, putting on weight, losing motivation, playing too much video games... they all contributed. When the cycling season rolled around I used the extra money I had to get Kari into cycling and a trip across the country for a race (and it's not like I would have even been competitive) didn't make sense. So I skipped it.

Two weeks ago I decided to start swimming again. The first day saw 6 or 8 laps in the pool... maybe 9. It wasn't many. Awhile ago I found (and put on my wall) a swimming routine called Zero to 1650 in Six Weeks. The training plan is built on the theory (like all good plans) that you have to stretch yourself-- put yourself in a bit of pain-- to force your body to adapt and grow stronger.

Today marked the first day of week 2 and I did 250 yards without stopping (and felt great... I could have done more) and then completed the whole workout (900 yards, or about half a mile). Thanks to a pretty good aerobic fitness level (all the cycling) my heart rate recovers greatly every rest break.

I want to make sure to have swimming (and some other exercise habits) fully ingrained so that the end of the cycling season doesn't signal the end of fitness-- I've got some very important reasons to get in shape and take the weight off and I don't want to wait until spring to start again. More to come....

Monday, July 28, 2008

Lack of updates remedied

So a bit of recapping the past few weeks

I moved in with Kari. That has gone great.
Got in a bike wreck, not so great.
Finished my single speed bike-needs stickers and a pic on the blog.
Bought some new shorts-chainlove.com is wicked if you get lucky.
Went on a road trip
Got a flat car tire on my way to wandering wednesday. When I was ride leader no less. Didn't make it there.
Bought new tires for my car on account of the flat.
Watched Carlos Sas-"TRAY" (as bob roll says it) win the tour de france. Also saw Christian Vande Velde ride to 5th overall - a great race for him.
Started swimming again. I definitely want to do tris. Week 2 of the swim program starts today.

That's all for today. Hopefully the pool doesn't hurt too bad on the road rash.


Monday, July 14, 2008

New Bike shop

This just looks cool! Bike repair, energy bar purchase and more. I'd love to see a few of these around (Harrisburg, Brandon, etc). I wonder how much they cost and if they turn a profit...

Friday, July 11, 2008

Early morning riding

So, I'm not sure if I'm cut out for early morning riding. I'll give it a bit longer before I decide for reals.

Thursday I woke up to meet Jon and get some riding in. Of course, I rode to the meeting point while he decided (based on cloud cover and darkness) to wait a little while before starting. We missed each other by 10 minutes, so I rolled around the west end of town, thru Ellis, then back to SF and home the long way through town.

Friday morning was different. I was meeting up with Larry from Spoke&Sport for a ride. I needed to get new tags for my car and didn't want to spend 8 dollars in gas driving to get them. So instead we met at 6:15 outside my apartment, hit the cash machine down the street, then turned South.

The wind was bad in town, and got FAR worse as we got out of town. 20mph out of the South, and we had 14 miles dead into the wind (6 miles were crosswind). Fortunately Larry and I worked well together, trading off pulls (200-300yards) so neither of us got too wiped. We rolled into Canton just before 8, then walked around the courthouse (under construction) to find the new entrance. I was the 7th person in line, and just a few minutes(15) later I was able to spend 46 hard earned dollars on a new stickers for my car. Yay!

We stopped at the gas station for a little refreshment (energy drink!!!) and then rolled home. The trip home was arguably worse-- high humidity and no wind (because it was at our back) made for a sweaty sweaty trip. I was thrilled to get home and showered before heading to work.

I'll miss WW next week, the boss and I are traveling.

Monday, July 7, 2008

FABRAD! (sorry for the late recap)

My apologies for recapping FABRAD days late (well, just 2 days). I have no good excuse other than being lazy and spending time with a lovely young lady and, of course, watching the Tour. On to the story (pictures below)

FABRAD got started a day early for a few of us. The Kernel and Briman took of early in the morning of the 4th in Mark's truck to paint the route. Green and pink arrows (along with nifty laminated signs) showed the turns for the riders. Gregg, Dirk-Billy and myself left 69th street at 7am (or shortly thereafter) to ride the route since we'd be helping and unable to ride the next day. The three of us had a nice ride into Iowa, up the hills leading to Inwood, down the Loooooooooooooooooooooooooong descent into Canton, and then back home.

On the way home near Lake Alvin we stopped to stretch and saw a curious sight-- a man riding a hybrid bike that looked all sorts of the wrong size for him. The reason was made clear a mile down the road, as we saw a nice lady pushing a road bike. We quickly determined that she had swapped bikes with her husband (who was riding back to Canton to get a vehicle). She had no spare equipment(people please, carry a spare tube -- you'll always find someone to change your tire for you, but not always someone to donate patches/tubes), so I donated a tube and a bit of expertise to fix her flat and let her ride home. A few missteps slowed my flat-changing time, and the arrival of 4 riders on CPC training ride didn't help much. Dustin did show me a trick I didn't know for helping keep the bead on the rim which will be helpful in the future.

The CPC boys took off while I was still cleaning up and re-mounting my bike and I decided to catch them. The long steep downhill into Lake Alvin provided an opportunity for gravity to work in my favor and I shot past, keeping the momentum going uphill. When the 4 caught up at the golf course I hopped on with them for a VERY fast few miles back to Sioux Falls. I don't want to say those speeds are commonplace for me, but I was in control, HR reasonable and was ready/willing to do more. If I can keep up the weight loss going through the offseason (which I didn't do this past year) I'd like to join the team next year and go to a few races.

Post ride I returned a call from Josh, who bought my old road bike. It seems he was riding Friday morning also when his rear derailleur came off (we're not sure if the hangar broke or the derailleur broke or the screws came undone-- more details to follow). I spent the rest of the afternoon in recovery.

Friday night Kari came over and we suited up and rode downtown to meet Gregg, el presidente and the first lady. We had some excellent food at the diner, then rode our bikes around the trail to watch the fireworks.

See... I had this vision that we'd be practically alone and have a great seat to watch the show. Well, 300+ other people (most of whom brought fireworks to blow up right next to us) also came. It was chaos, and I was glad to leave(see more of the story on Kirk's blog)

Saturday we woke up, stopped at Hy-Vee for energy drinks and FABRAD snacks (people love some snickers out on the road) and then drove down to Cherry Rock park. Kari got registered for FABRAD and found Amy to start the ride. I found Kirk, Mark's truck (to run the food stop) and we were ready to roll. After Kirk's short speech (be safe and stuff) the riders were off.

Kirk and I high-tailed it out to the rest stop at Lake Alvin, passing the main bunch of riders on the way. CPC was leading out a large group of riders into strong headwinds (20-25mph). The lead train didn't stop for refreshments, but most of the remaining riders were happy to stop for a chat

Mark and Eric talk to the Prez

Energy Gu from Kyle A. (Spoke-n-Sport's mechanical support)

An interview with KDLT (the sisters from Iowa)

or like Craig, a quick repair from Danny T. (Two Wheeler Dealer)

I should point out that while Kari and Amy were the last riders on the 100k route to come in, they were still in great spirits (rumors of crazy women singing while going uphill were heard more than once).

KDLT sent one of their reporters out to do a story about FABRAD. Their reporter did a great job (the story played at 6 and 10) but their website leaves quite a bit to be desired.

WARNING: Rant ahead The video is already gone (and attempts to link to it failed-- they don't have permanent links available) and the story is about to scroll off the page. I'm really disappointed that in 2008 they are unable or unwilling to do simple things like post content with a permanent link (so I can send a link to friends and family) and leave it online for people to view later. Sure there's a slight cost in disk space and bandwidth, but it would drive traffic to their website for weeks to come. Instead, I can't direct people to view the news clip any longer.

I did record the news on my DVR-- but again, that does me little good. Without taking extraordinary measures, mom (who's vacationing in Boston) won't ever see the story. The old media companies and cable companies are so slow to embrace the internet-- they only see people viewing the story/show online (rather than live on their TV) as a threat to their business model. They need to change with the times-- my generation doesn't want to watch the news from 10 to 10:30. I want to check the website, find a couple key items that interest me, read the story/view the video, and move on with my day. Similar to the plight of many newspapers, the media and news companies need to come up with alternative ways to monetize an audience -- selling commercials for TV shows and the nightly news might not last more than 5-10 more years.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Good Samaritan... or, TWENTY DOLLARS!

Today I didn't think I'd get any riding in (work, pick up boy5 immediately after work, etc). Well the boy and I were talking (I do my best to get him excited/interested in exercise) and he asks if he can ride his bike back to his mom's house-- he wasn't spending the night with me today.

"heck yeah" I said! We hooked the Giant Half bike up to my hybrid, attached helmets, and took off. We road thru neighborhoods, waving at people, saying hi, and enjoying ourselves.

As we rode down the bike path on Bahnson Ave I noticed a cell phone laying on the road. We stopped, boy5 hopped off and grabbed it for me, and we continued to drop him off at his mom's.

I looked at the phone and called the most recent/prolific text message person, "Sami".

"Hi, I have your friend's phone. Who owns this phone?"

"blahblah blah, my friend lives at 1234 blah street"

"awesome, it's practically on my way home."

"ok dude, i'll call my friend's house and tell her parents you're on the way"

So I ride over and the dad is in the driveway. Hand him a cell phone, he offers me 20 bucks (which I take, woot!) and then I ride for home. Meet some friends along the way, grab groceries (and I get to splurge thanks to a free $20!) and call it a night.

Moral of the story-- save money (and earn money) by riding your bike.