Saturday, September 27, 2008

Riding is going well

I haven't been posting enough eye candy or funny stories of late. Thankfully, Miller High Life came to my rescue with a bike oriented commercial that made me laugh. Enjoy!!


Thursday, September 25, 2008

Ride on

I won a prize in the bike race yesterday. I was the third most impoved person. I got a 5 dollar gift certificate to a really cheap local resturant called CeeCee's. I think its a buffet kind of place where 5 dollars is actually a full meal (minus drink). The main point is that I actually won something. I might just frame the gift certificate as proof of winning. Now that I dropped most of my time it will be much harder to place again because I can't always improve by large amounts, but that's ok. 

My time was 26:43. That's about 40 seconds faster than the first time trial.

On Thursdays I don't get to ride because I run experiments till 8:00pm. It's sad but still a good break. I'm looking foward to getting a ride in tomorrow. I am starting to realize that this great weather can't hold out forever. Winter is going to be long this year. I can feel it in my bones.

That's about all from here. Back to writing a proposal for Dr. Merritt. 


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

It's a hard knock ride....for me

I went on the Wednesday fast ride today with the Purdue team. They weren't kidding around. We did 40 miles in under 2 hours. With about 7 miles to go I just ran out of gas, and tried to drop back out of the group. They wouldn't let me drop. The leader (an undergraduate who is on some pro bike team based in Chicago) came back and told me to stick on the last person's wheel and to to pedal harder. I literally felt like I was holding onto the group by a piece of string that was just waiting to break apart.

I'm glad they made me stay with them since I made it to the end of the ride with the group. I'm sure I looked a little pathetic, but at least I finished. When I got home I looked at my bike computer and saw that our top speed was 33.8 miles per hour. On the flats in the country, the paceline was usually going around 25 mph. It's good to know that my bike can go that fast.

I also learned how to do a rotating paceline. Basically, the bikers go in a circle. Once you are at the front of all the riders, you pull to the side and fall back. It was pretty fun doing some technical things with good riders. I'm guessing that my lack of handling skills made them nervous.

Oh... I bought a new bike toy. It's a bike computer that has lots of little gadets on it (including cadence). One of the guys in the club sold it to me used for 10 dollars. When I went to look at equivalent models at the bike store (I had to go, to have them fix a broken spoke), they were 44 dollars. I feel like my Dutch sense served me well.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Ike is getting me down

I didn't ride today becuase of a weather front know as Ike.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

The hurts

Today's ride was short and simple with a large serving of deadly headwind. I don't mind the wind so much, but when I'm riding into the wind sweat seems to get into my eyes, and that is annoying. I went biking during the Purdue game this week since the entire town stays indoors to watch it, and the streets are nice and empty. (Purdue lost in double overtime, so I'm glad I was home before mobs of agitated drivers took to the streets and decided to vent their frustration on me)

There isn't much else to say except that I have a truck load of work to do tonight and tomorrow. Blah. It tastes bad.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I also found this interesting gem

I also saw this on the Internet and thought it was interesting in regards to Time Trial equipment.

"One study published in the German Tour magazine Jan 2007

They put Uwe Peschel on a normal bike:

Needed Watts for Speed = 45 km/h :

Stevens San Remo bike with normal handlebar 465 Watts needed to go 45 km/h
Same bike Hands down the drops: 406 watts needed
Same bikeEaston Aeroforce bar: 369 Watts
Same bike Triathlon position (5.5 cm lower bar, saddle forwards): 360 Watts
Same bike Triathlon position (5.5 cm lower bar, saddle forwards) and
carbon Tri spoke wheels front and rear: 345 Watt

Cervelo (Alloy P3) + Tri spoke front 328 Watts
Cervelo + Tri spoke front + disk rear wheel : 320
Cervelo + Tri spoke front + disk rear wheel +Giro helmet: 317
Cervelo + Tri spoke front + disk rear wheel +Giro helmet + speed suit: 307
Cervelo + Tri spoke front + disk rear wheel +Giro helmet + speed suit +
saddle 3 cm further back: 293 Watts"

Here is a picture of mrUwe Peschel. I read that he is quite the legend.

By Special Request

This is a purely informational post about some of the differences between road bikes and time trial bikes.

The biggest difference between road bikes and TT (time trial) bikes is all the effort to become aerodynamic. In TT's, you are not allowed to draft so reducing drag is extra important. The biggest difference are the areo bars that stick out in front of the bike. TT specific bikes don't even have dropped handle bars that you see on typical road bikes. Also, the wheels are special to reduce drag. The seat posts (and other tubing) is often shaped in ways to be aerodynamic. 

I think that a TT bike has a little different geometry so that you can go faster for shorter distances compared to a road bike which is designed to carry riders for longer distances.

Other things that you often see TT racers use are....

areo helment

and skinsuit

Here is a website that gives a little more info about how much time you save for each piece of equipment you upgrade.

That's all that I can think of, but I'm sure everyone will get the idea. Basically, I think it comes down to another reason to buy more toys.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Update on Time trial

The organizer sent out the results.

I took 22nd place out of 34 men. I beat all 6 of the girls (Not that I was worried(I was though))

My time was 27.23
The person behind me was 27.32
The person in front of me was27.03
The person who passed me took 10th place with 25.46
The winner was 21.48 (This means he was going fast)
Last place didn't get to finish due to a broken chain

The first five guys looked exactly like this only with different team jersys. I was intimidated. True story.

I think crazy looking helmets make for good gifts.

Have a good night

Individual time trial

Well, school is in full swing. I'm back to my old schedule of staying up late to get stuff done. This means that there has been a serious lack of morning bike rides. I'm ok with that. It's just so cold out in the morning. 

My knee has been getting better slowly. I've been taking it pretty easy over the last week to let it settle back into the rhythm of biking. I also take a lot of ibuprofen (I call it the Liz approach) and that helps everything out a little more.

In bigger news, I did my first official bike race today. It was an individual time trial. I complete the 10 mile course in 27:42. It certainly wasn't the fastest time, but it wasn't the slowest either. Some people came to the race with their special time trial bikes, tear dropped helmets, and shoe covers. I guess some people take this pretty seriously. The winning time was right around 21 minutes, so I have some work to do. I was afraid that I would be passed by a ton of people who started after me (one person started every minute), but in reality I was only passed by one person around mile 6. I kept up till mile 7, and then watched him bike off into the horizon.

There was a big hill at mile 5 that kind of killed me, so next week is get Nathan better at hills week. 

There are 4 more time trials this fall, so I'll post my times when I participate.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Back on the Bike

Due to my recent lack of posting, I'm afraid I may have scared people into thinking that I had given up on blogging my consistently boring biking adventures. This is not the case. I just haven't been riding my bike much over the last week. A combination of rain, a twisted knee muscle, and a kind of nasty cold forced me to take 3 days off the bike. Never fear, the ailments have for the most part subsided and I got out for a nice jaunt today. I did a short and slow 15 miles, but all systems checked out for a little faster ride tomorrow. 

I came to the conclusion today that I should never go out biking towards the end of a Purdue football game. Believe it or not, football fans driving home are not all that courteous to cyclists on the road. They really had no reason to be upset given that they crushed Northern Colorado by a gazillion and one points. Maybe they all happened to honk as they passed me to let me know that Purdue had won, but I doubt it.

Boiler Up!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

That biking... so hot right now

It has been a hot last two days here. I have gotten in some nice long and short rides. Today is a day off to let my body recuperate a bit. I've been going through my water bottles super fast. My rule is that the ride is over when you are down to your 1/3 of your last bottle. Hopefully that is enough to get you home without getting dehydrated.

I'm fighting the start of a cold right now. Right now I'm at the sore throat and stuffy head stage. Hopefully, I don't break out into to a full fledged cold. I'm quietly optimistic that this won't happen.

I don't have time for a picture this morning since I have to go to school and inspire young minds.

Monday, September 1, 2008

50 miles and pickle feet

I finally did a 50 mile bike ride. I was planning on doing only 46 miles but I got lost and ended up doing 4 miles of looking around. I've discovered that I most often get lost when I'm in a valley surrounded by hills. It was a little frustrating to go up the same hill 3 times simply because I couldn't find the right road. But eventually I figured it out and all was good.

There was one stretch of "paved" road that was really rough. My bike started going over the bumps and before I knew it my whole body was going numb from the vibrations. Luckily the road wasn't that long and once I got over it everything came back to life.

I finally got around to using one of those goo energy packets. I've never used one before and what a disaster. I got to much in my mouth at once and almost gagged. I just wasn't expecting that consistency of goo. Somehow I got it all over my face and fingers and that stuff is sticky. It wasn't horrible, but not great either. The goo did seem to give me a short boost of energy. The last 10 miles felt pretty good.

The pickle feet thing is strictly non-bike related. Liz and I went to the store for some stuff last night and a stocker boy dropped a jar of dill pickles in the aisle, but didn't put out one of those "caution pickle juice all over the floor" signs. I happily and unsuspecting went sloshing through it in my flip flops. I didn't not fall, but it is true that pickle juice is slippery. The stocker guy asked if I was ok, but didn't apologize (one wasn't really needed). I was hoping for a coupon, but we just kept shopping without making a big deal about it. All said and done I'm glad I flopped through a lake of vinegar (sterile) rather than liquid sugar (sticky). So my foot smelled of dill and happiness all the way home and for the rest of the night.

In honor of the fallen pickles here is a picture of a giant one.

And all you could ever want to know about pickles.

I would suggest navigating to the kids fun page.