Today’s search term has something for the contrarians. Thankfully, unlike many of my excellent posts, this one won’t take up much real estate on the front page:
How much easier is a road bike than a mountain bike?
A road bike isn’t easier than a mountain bike – at all. It’s faster… 20-30%
If it’s easier, you’re doing it wrong. 😀
Something funny happened on the club ride last night. I didn’t have enough time to get the cleats installed and aligned on my shoes last night before the ride so I just packed up and headed over.
It was another windy evening, and I hung out with Mike, our once Nationally ranked triathlete for the warmup…our warmup of six miles* was into the wind for the first half and keeping a pace of 18-19 mph was tough into the 15 mph wind. This led me to believe that we’d have a nice steady ride, around 21-22 mph.
On the bright side, I did get to see exactly how far I could hang on at speeds averaging 26-28 mph… And a couple of those were into the wind, lucky me, it was my pull for one and that’s what did me in. The distance I can maintain that speed in a group would be six miles (the first mile was a breeze at 20 mph).
Now originally, because I don’t keep track while I’m riding, just after I dropped I was already kicking around titles for a post about how tired I was and that I needed to take a day or two off because I dropped so early – until I heard my Endomondo chick spit out a ridiculously silly number… “8 miles in 21 minutes and [inaudible] seconds”… Holy crap folks, I was certain I heard that wrong.
As I dropped off the back, I passed the B group but kept my speed down hoping that would allow some of the others who fell off before me to catch up. It didn’t happen, so I kept on by my lonesome and picked up the pace. I was battling the setting sun to get back before dusk so I didn’t have any time to watch the paint dry but I didn’t kill myself either. I managed to 2:45 – 3:15 minute miles for most of the rest of the ride but that stretch at the beginning killed me.
When I’d finished, I knew that the first several miles were fast but I had no idea that they were that fast and I was certain that I wasn’t able to hang on because I was just flat out tired from too many days on the bike in a row (15 straight)… Until I looked at the details on Endomondo (my tracker of choice). The reality was that I performed very well considering the speeds that we were hitting and my current level of fitness. Most of the guys that I ride with use a cycle computer, I’m one of the few that tracks with my phone, but being a noob, I need the data so I don’t jump to unecessary conclusions like I did after dropping off the back.
Now there’s no doubt, it’s time for a day off and I’ll be heading to the bike shop later to get my shoes done and a minor tune up done so today will be as good as any and I’ll have another on Friday because we’re expecting rain – and that’ll be perfect before my 200k on Saturday, but the point I’m trying to get at is this; If I have the data from my ride to look at after I’m done, it helps me filter out the garbage that I’d otherwise entertain as plausible. That keeps me from making rash decisions based on improperly interpreted performance input.
Just a thought.
*It makes me chuckle that my warmup for the main ride is longer (and a lot faster) than I was capable of as the main ride last year…