Sunday, September 28, 2008

There and back and there again.

That’s a fair description of today’s ride, a 25 mile northbound there and back and ditto for 6 miles southbound. I knew I was going to be pushed for time and ultimately that was reflected in the shortage of miles 62 vs. the required 70. Had I not forgotten my headphones and spent 10 minutes waiting for Pavilions’ to open at 7am so I could buy another pair I could have squeezed in another 3 miles. However that being said and despite the shortage I am pleased with my
overall time and speed; I averaged 16.8 mph, it was 17.2 right until the last hill which pushed it down and covered the distance in a moving time of 3:41 and a total time of 3:57 (10 minutes or so for Pavilions’, a couple of sets of traffic lights and crossing the road to turnaround), that’s the quickest I have ridden this route and while I have not gone this far I am ahead, pace-wise, than my previous best ride, so there is a measurable improvement. Despite that though I still managed to get overtaken, and in spite of my efforts to at least keep the other riders in sight they seemingly effortlessly passed me and pulled away. I am amazed at the speed that these riders maintain and I wonder what I need to do to keep up a average speed in excess of 20mph, stop being a runner and become a cyclist would probably be the first step so let’s put that on the back burner for now.

For this ride I fitted a Profile Design Aqua Rack twin bottle holder behind my saddle and with some jigging about I managed to get it to fit my rear light (I have a light for those early morning starts) and saddle bag with spares (inner tubes CO2, tire levers etc) and while it’s not the prettiest set up it works, report to follow in the future. These are my Polar bottles that I fill and freeze the night before so they are cold when I come to drink them later, I use the same principle with a half filled bottle for long runs and that works well keeping the fluid cold/cool for up to two hours.

And so this afternoon we faced 15 over sugared children, a faux swimming pool that kept collapsing and spilling its contents, the worlds largest outdoor GeoTrax trainset; at least it felt like that while I was crawling around on my knees on the concrete yesterday assembling it and the rantings of a Mad Scientist children’s entertainer, all in all a priceless afternoon; the sugar crash has happened and I think I can just manage one more slice of homemade ice cream cake before packing my running bag and heading to bed.

No real photo action it was mostly foggy and cool which was just fine by me, but here's the Motion Based info:


  1. 17.2 until you hit a hill doesn't sound so shabby to me. the only time i can maintain any higher average than that is when i am sucking someone's wheel!

    ...just wait till those 15 over-sugared kids spend the night for the birthday party sleepover - collapsing pools has got nothing on that sort of fun.

  2. Nice ride! You should have waited though and had those over-sugared children push you!

  3. aren't you glad you went for your ride before the bday party! your energy may not have been same lol. great ride btw.

  4. This must be a sign. All the runner blogs I check these days are talking about biking. So I'm buying a bike soon. I won't be nearly as fast as you though.

  5. Tell me those thoughts of not being a runner did not pop into your head? Ha Ha, I knew it was all a joke.
    I'm still searching for a bike myself so I don't end up "running" myself into the ground.

  6. Next year I will turn some focus to your every same question. I am told that it you want to get fast than you must ride a ton.

    Great ride... and pace!!!

  7. Nice ride SLB. Keeping 17+ mph on tough course is good. If you want to catch-up with the guys that passed you it takes some effort.

    First I assume they were keeping fairly high cadence 90+ when they passed you and pushed relatively easy gear. Work on your cadence - I recall you mentioned that you average 60-70 which is low and you probably push harder gear that makes you tired sooner.

    Second is to be as aerodynamic as possible (aero bike with fast wheels helps, but is not what wins the races - the engine is more important). Also keeping your bike in top condition helps quite a bit (does any of your break pads by any chance rub against the wheel - it happens often. I realized it only after I finished 40k time trial that I had one break rubbing my rear wheel). The aero position in your case is to stay in the drops as much as you can and not worry on the downhills - just let it rip if you know the route. If not exercise some caution so you don't end-up like me ;-). Another thing that influences aero is the stuff that you wear - do you have regular T-shirt or biking jersey? Baggy shorts? They slow you quite a bit especially in windy conditions.

    All of the above will help you get faster - at least it helped me. I can average over 21mph over 57 miles even on fairly hilly course - as long as I do not wipe-out and lose 10 minutes getting back up and fixing the bike :-).

  8. kxux, thanks for the tips. Yes you're right about the cadence it's slowly improving (I am working on it on the bike and the run) this ride averaged out at 84 (I need to double check on GTC on another pc) so it's getting up there but yes north of 90rpm is where it needs to be for sure.

    My bike is a bit old and a bit heavy but it's well looked after; serviced, cleaned etc and I have no shame about being clad lycra.

    You right about getting on the drops and staying there though, that's what I need to work on as I spend to much time on the hoods, I also need to invest in a new saddle as after 40-50 miles I start to feel it and get fidgety which takes away from pedaling!

    And touch wood I am not planning to crash anytime soon although I suppose it's an if not a when the more riding I do, maybe I should just ride into a tree and get it out the way!

  9. I just invested in polar bottles! They are pretty sweet! Looks like a great set up you have!

  10. Sweet ride! And shhhh.....keep my ultra ambitions a secret! :)


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