Experimental music, photography, and adventures

A bit lacking

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

It’s been too long since I posted here. I haven’t been riding much, aside from commuting to work and class. This still has me on the bike about 12 miles per day, four days per week (Fridays this summer I have devoted to some other projects, so I am essentially working from home those days).

Even though I’m only taking one class this summer (and working, of course), I’ve still felt a lack of time, energy, and even motivation to ride. That “motivation” part is weird to me — the past few years I’ve wanted to ride as much as possible whenever the opportunity arose. I’m not feeling that way right now, though the rides I do manage are always enjoyable. For now I’m taking things as they come. But I’m definitely looking forward to my class ending. Hopefully the rest of the summer will be a little more relaxed, and maybe I’ll have more time, energy, and motivation to ride.

I did get out and ride last weekend. It was a little on the hot side — maybe mid-80s. Probably the hottest ride of the year so far. I used to hate heat, but I have learned to deal with it better, and on this day, I actually enjoyed it. I headed out with a sort of vague plan to ride east of town, an area where I rode a lot when I lived on that side of town, but haven’t ridden as much lately.


It was a beautiful day to ride. I felt pretty good, though I did notice that my fitness has declined a bit. I struggled on the hills a bit more than I would have liked. A strong headwind on the return trip certainly didn’t help, though it did cool me down somewhat.




I replaced my rear tire. The old one was worn through the outer casing and a weird purple layer was showing in many places. I’d say I wore it out — it only lasted about 1700 miles. The new tire is also an upgrade to a Continental Grand Prix 4000 700×25. I’ve read that these are more durable than the Conti Ultra Race I had before.

Oddly enough, the GP4000 700×25 is significantly wider than the Ultra Race 700×25 I had on the wheel previously. Before, I could put the wheel on and off easily, but now I have to deflate the tire to do it. As far as I’m concerned, this is a good thing. The extra volume leads to a slightly cushier ride.


I got rained on, on my way home, but the cool rain felt good. Naturally I had just washed the bike, which is now a grimy mess again. I took a road through town that I normally avoid, but on a Sunday afternoon it was quiet and pleasant.

I rode 33 miles, and I felt quite refreshed. I’m hoping to be able to do a longer ride over Memorial Day weekend. I’d love to stretch my legs for 50-60 miles or more. We’ll see!




9 Responses to “A bit lacking”

  1. David Crowell Says:

    Very green & blue. Green foliage, blue sky, blue bike.

    It’s nice that you got out for a while.

  2. Bill Lambert Says:

    I thought about trying a Continental GP 4000, until I saw the price! Bike tires have been on the rise, along with the price of oil.

    Even though you don’t get out for recreational rides as often as you’d like, they are always out there ready to be ridden.

  3. Apertome Says:

    I hear you on price, but anecdotally, I’ve heard of people getting 4,000+ miles on them, so in the long run, my hope is that they’ll be worth it. Plus, my LBS had as low a price as I’ve seen.

  4. Jon Grinder Says:

    I know that the older Grand Prix tires were very durable. i haven’t used any of the newer versions.

    Do you have to deflate the tire, even with the quick-release on the brake opened up?

  5. Apertome Says:

    Jon: yeah, I opened the brake quick-release and I still had to deflate the tire.

    Actually, now that I think about it, the bike was in the stand at the time. Maybe the cable got pinched.

  6. wil Says:

    Its good that you are talking out your needs/desires to ride. I think if you don’t feel like riding much but do, it turns out badly. You’ll find the groove. Maybe head to the woods for some MTB. That my be just what the doctor ordered.


  7. Apertome Says:

    Wil: good thoughts. I’ve thought about the MTB and it does sound very appealing. But, with the incessant rain, the trails are mud bogs. Plus, my MTB is in need of a chain at the moment. Hopefully soon I can get out there.

  8. Jon Grinder Says:

    I think you are probably right that the cable was pinched. I am running 700x35c SpeedMax tires with an old single-pivot road brake at the rear of my fixed gear, and that tire slips right between the pads while fully inflated.

  9. Pondero Says:

    Boy, I can relate. I can home frazzled last night, and could have gone out for 30 minutes or so. I ate ice cream instead. Oh well. Looking forward to the weekend…

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