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Daily Archives: May 17, 2012

Keeping Busy, Staying Out Of Trouble

I always have a tough time the first nice days of the summer – I have since I was a kid.  When the nice weather hits, I want outside and I want outside now.  For a few years I was able to play hooky at least a few times, but that’s not the case this year.  I’m stuck in the office until further notice and while it may not be sitting well, I can’t change anything about it.  That said, we’re coming up on one of the best weeks, as far as weather goes, in at least eight or nine months.  The forecast is nothing but sun and 70-80 degree temps for the next ten days (there’s one day of possible showers in there).  It’s going to be a blast.  I’ve got plenty of riding on tap, a run on Saturday and I’m certain we’ll be getting into family rides this weekend.

I went out for my normal 16 mile ride yesterday and I actually managed to keep the pace more towards a slow recovery ride.  As nice as it was, this was not an easy thing, though I received a helping hand – the first half of my ride was almost all dead into the wind.  I took my time, enjoyed the sunshine and surroundings and ended up with a 17.8 mph average – and only broke 20 on a couple of miles riding with the wind at my back…  I hardly broke a sweat.  That brings me to an interesting conundrum that I’m mentally bumping into:  Why is it that it’s actually work for me at 20 mph, but 18 feels like I’m crawling.  It’s a mystery.  In any event, I downloaded the bicycle calculator that Gary mentioned in the comments section on one of my posts the other day and it had me pegged, for the ride into the wind at 334 Watts average.  I don’t exactly know what that means, yet, but it’s a cool enough app on the iPhone.

I’m thinking about shifting around some goals again to see if I can’t concentrate more on building up for the Tuesday night group rides – this getting dropped thing is really pissing me off (in an inspirational, motivational way of course).  I’m thinking of switching to my mountain bike for my recovery rides with the hope that I can keep that nagging drive to go hard or go home in its place – on the road bike, where it belongs…and the switch will get me onto the back roads where I can enjoy a little serenity and shelter from the daily traffic grind of my normal route…besides, I really am missing my mountain bike a bit…except that saddle, now that I’ve got a rigid saddle on my road bike I sure don’t miss the gel saddle.  Those things hurt.

In maintainance news, I’ve been mildly busy over the last several days.  I lowered my road bike saddle by a millimeter this morning – when I moved it back last week it needed to come down a touch to compensate.  Over the last few days I’ve developed a couple of minor hot spots and I’m hoping the drop takes care of it.  If not, I’ll have to bring the saddle in a little bit.  I also took apart my rear derailleur pulleys on my mountain bike to clean and grease them – it never dawned on me before, but those pulleys collect a lot of dirt.  Cleaning them up improved and quieted the ride considerably and the task was incredibly simple – well worth the fifteen minutes it took to get it set up, done and cleaned up.

My Endomondo Challenges are a mixed bag – I’m absolutely killing it in the cycling challenges while this month’s calorie challenge is better than above average, but numbers-wise my I’m pretty high up there:

April/May Cycling Challenge:  763.42 miles puts me at 643 of 24,657:  Top 3%

Calorie Challenge:  16,824 kcal puts me at 1405 of 24,886:  Top 6%

Our local Cycling Challenge:  8 of 376!:  Top 2% and I’ve opened up a very healthy lead over #9 – I’ve got a very good shot at a top 10 finish for the end of the month (now if I could just get my ass to keep up with the Tuesday night group).