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Archive for the 'Cycling Recap' Category

A record month

Sunday, August 1st, 2010

July was a record month for me: I rode 732.8 miles! Helping to bring my mileage total up were some club rides, a century, and of course, the 160-mile Ride Across INdiana. But the thing that has done the most to increase my riding was getting a road bike.  Speaking of which, I have almost 1000 miles on the Bianchi since I bought it in late May. I’m amazed at how much faster it is than the Trucker. Riding long distances, and climbing big hills, got a lot more doable.

I’ve acclimated to the heat better this year than ever before. It’s a combination of riding more in the heat, and being more aware of hydration/nutrition on the bike. The most useful thing I’ve discovered to that end is Endurolytes. They’re little capsules for electrolyte replenishment. I take a couple capsules per hour, and they help keep my electrolytes in balance. This helps immensely with hydration, and also makes recovery go smoother. I have also been using gels and blocks occasionally, but only as a supplement to real food. I used to eschew most of this stuff, but I find it really helps, especially on longer rides in the heat.

I’m still commuting by bicycle, of course. I’ve found that my commutes have not been much fun lately. It’s just been too hot. I don’t mind getting hot and sweaty when I ride, but I don’t like showing up at work that way. I find ways to deal with it, but it’s just not a lot of fun. I’m not going to stop commuting by bicycle, but I’m not enjoying it as much right now. I’m sure once it cools off a bit I’ll be feeling better about it once again.

Mileage, vision, and a brief break from the heat

Thursday, July 1st, 2010

I fell just barely shy of 500 miles for June. I hit 496 on Tuesday, and thought I’d get the few extra yesterday, but I wasn’t feeling well. Alas. I can’t really feel bad about 496 miles in  a month, though. Also, I passed the 2,000 mile mark for the year last week.

Tuesday night, I did a hard training ride. It wasn’t a particularly difficult route, but I rode harder than usual. It felt good, I really pushed it more than usual, but I wouldn’t want to ride that way all the time.

I got contact lenses. They are so much better for riding. I have peripheral vision again! And, now I can wear any sunglasses I want. I picked up a pair with interchangeable lenses. I’m amazed at how much better they are than my old glasses + clip-on sunglasses. It used to be any time I hit 30 mph, my eyes would well up with tears and it’d be hard to see. I’ve passed 47 mph on downhills a couple of times in my sunglasses, with no tears in my eyes whatsoever.

I’ve also found that I really like the red lenses. They’re dark enough to help in bright light, but I can still see in the shadows. And, they just make things look nice.

The weather has been gorgeous the past couple of days. Naturally, it’s supposed to heat up again for the holiday weekend. I’m planning on doing a club ride for sure, and some other riding, but I’m not sure yet what else I will do. We’ll also have houseguests, which will be a lot of fun.

May cycling stats

Tuesday, June 1st, 2010

Well, May was a great month for cycling for me. I rode a grand total of 579.37 miles, possibly a new record for me.

Here’s how the miles broke down:

  • Commute: 188.46
  • Mixed terrain: 59.25
  • Mountain: 15.80
  • Road: 375.11

I also rode my first century ride and got a new road bike. Plus, I got to ride with a few other like-minded riders. Wow, what a month!

I’m hoping that June will be as good, or better. There’s another organized century ride on the radar … this one is a lot hillier, and it will probably be hot, so it will be significantly harder. There are shorter routes available if it gets too brutal, but I’m hoping to go the whole 100 miles.

My bicycles have been shifting roles. When my commute was shorter, I used to commute on The Beast, but since we moved and my commute is longer, the Trucker, which was my road/mixed-terrain bike, is becoming more of a workhorse, seeing commuting duties as well. Now that I have a road bike, the Trucker won’t see as much pure road duty, but will still be used for mixed terrain, and of course camping trips, whenever I finally get around to doing another one.

My mountain bike hasn’t seen a lot of action recently, but I intend to use it to heavily explore more trails and gravel roads in Hoosier National Forest.

The new road bike continues to impress me. It’s just a dream to ride. I realized after my ride on Sunday that I hadn’t struggled as much with the hills on Popcorn Road. I think that this lighter, more efficient bicycle is making climbing easier, which I hope will help extend my range as well.

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