Sunday, November 29, 2009

Clean up in aisle 5

Spent a couple of days this weekend hanging Christmas lights and cleaning downstairs.  I have to admit that I haven't kept the basement in order for a long time, I have bikes and bike parts all over the place. Finally I put a top over the old dresser to make it a bigger area to work on but it didn't take long before there was no area to work on. I did make room for the bikes (see picture) and moved a few things around. I'm hoping to finish cleaning and make it look good by the end of this week after I buy a peg board to hang all my tools. But before I do that I think I should finish patching up the hole in our bathroom by the baseboard. I started working on it just a couple of years ago and haven't finished it. When we moved to this house we did a lot of work and finished everything as fast as we could but now it's like, I don't want to do anything else but ride. I cut the grass and do the trimming to keep the yard looking ok and that's about it. All that stuff takes time away from riding.

Anyway, on another subject, if you haven't made it to Findley State park you may have lost your window of opportunity. The snow and rain we got Friday morning didn't even make it there. I went again today in the afternoon after Church and it was completely dry and fast. As you can see my bike hardly has any mud on it, but the tires. I changed the riser handlebar to a flat carbon fiber bar the Jeff had given me and I felt more in control of the bike. This bar is also a full 3.5 inches shorter, the bike handled better. All I need now is a bit longer stem to see if that makes me feel more at home on the bike, there's times I feel I'm riding a cruiser bike. I was going to ride early in the morning with Ken and the gang but I didn't feel very good when I got up this morning and went back to bed to get some rest. I've been getting up early and going to bed late and it finally caught up to me. I felt a lot  better in the afternoon, specially after been able to put in two laps on the dirt with just one more day left in November. Can you believe that Tuesday is already December. Here's is hoping we don't get to much rain this week.
Thanks for reading, later.

Friday, November 27, 2009

First Snow

Had our first snow this morning. First time for Zen. It'll not be te last time, the Farmers Almanac is predicting a very cold and snowy winter. Yesterday 4 of us went to Reagan Park to ride off road and it was good. The entire 9 mile loop was rideable. Some spots were muddy and others it looked like  the little rain we had didn't even touch it. We were planning to go to Findley Sunday morning but I don't know now with the snow we just got it might be too muddy. Can't get enough of my 29er single speed.

Zen's Thanksgiving

Had a nice time at my sister in law for Thanksgiving dinner. Zen had his share of food and wine.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009



Monday, November 23, 2009

When did I...

Since the end of September I've gained 4+ pounds. I'm not riding as long as I did before but I'm still eating like if I was. I can feel it, may not sound like much but when you are used to 138lbs and all of the sudden you are a few onces shy of 143 that weight scale doesn't look good. And with the holidays coming up, it's a dangerous season. But I'm betting myself that even with the holidays coming up, I'll loose the weight. I'll be down to 138 by January first. Just don't put a full slab of ribs in front of me, or pumpkin pie, or turkey or apple pie, or... well you get the picture. I'm picking the worst time of the year to loose a few pounds but I'm out to prove that I have will power. The will to eat whatever I want, the will to stuff my face with food, the will to...why I'm I doing this to myself? I'm not going to be crashing a lot, I need something to hurt me and that's not eating a lot of what I like, or maybe not. Maybe I'll hurt myself more if I eat more. Hmmm sounds like a good plan. But no, I have the will power to do it even this time of the year when I'm going to PR to visit my parents and eat my Mom's cooking. Darn, why I'm I doing this to myself, because I want to be ready for next year that's why. I thought I had a descent year but I want a better one and I have something to prove at a race or two. The countdown is on, 138 by January first. Go to go, food is calling me.

Maiden SS Voyage

The SS 29er hit the dirt at Findley SP for the first time Sunday afternoon. I stopped a few times to make adjustmennts to the saddle and seat post. For all the talk about 29ers being slow on tight single track and slow to acelarate, I didn't find that much difference. Yes, on some really tight corners I felt I slowed down more that with my 26er but I atribute that to riding a 29er for the first time. I rode over roots that I would normally look for a better line with ease and without fear off slidding off. I felt like " I want a fully geared 29er now" but that will have to wait until my daughters last two years of college, some things are more important than self indulging. Any way getting back to the bike, the big wheel soaked up the roots, rocks and bumps better than my 26er. After a few adjustments I was able to ride most of the trail without stopping to adjust anything and the ride was great, cleaned every bump and little hills with no problem. Got back to the car, picked up another bottle and hit the trail again only to find my rear tire had a leak and it wasn't going to last  another mile. Turned around and was able to ride out. Had no spare 29er tubes since I had just picked up the bike Friday and I really didn't want to sit there and put a patch on the tube because I had NO patches either. I went home after only one lap but happy I was able to test it before the trails are to wet to ride.
Here she is, nice and dirty. Actually the trail was  in great shape and the only mud I got was on the tires.
One thing, I'm choppping one inch off each side on the handlebars, I can't ride with such wide handlebars.
If I had gears I could probably take off down a runway and get some air. Too wide for me. Let me know if anybody wants to trade a riser specialized handlebar before I trim them. I'm trying out a fllat carbon fiber handlebar frst and see how it goes. Risers are not for  me, I feel I'm on a cruiser bike.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Trying out the 29erSS at Findley today

Going to Findley to try out the 29er SS this afternoon. Can't wait, rode it around the neighbohood and it feels the handling is going to be good. Want to "feel" it on the trails. Ride report later tonight.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Single Speed build up

The SS arrived at Solon Bicycle, picked it up after work and quickly started putting it together.Love the ride, can't wait to take it off road. Thanks for the deal Dan. The old SS was looking on in the background.

Finished product below.

Today's Zen adventure

Not much to report about Zen today. He had quite a good day. Here he is always dreaming about vacation

Get away from me you little germs or I'll germ-X you.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Zen and his workout

I went downstairs for a little core work and Zen joined me for a workout. He rode the trainer and did some weights and core work. Even though I told him not to get on the treadmill, he did and had an accident.

The little dude it's pretty strong.

Zen and the treadmill are not compatible. Sorry for the bad picture. Until I get a new camera it'll have to do.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Still in pain

Got up at 4:06 am as usual to go to the gym and do my spinning class. Thought about getting a sub but decided against it. Crashing on a bike is like when you have a car accident, you start feeling the effects of the crash a couple of days later. My tail bone is killing me, add to that another spin class tonight and it really hurts. I must have hit the saddle with my tail bone. It was a good day though, two spin classes, weights and streching. Getting up early again tomorrow to run for 25-30 minutes. I've been building up my running a minute at a time, I don't want to get hurt again. I didn't run for a whole year after I tweaked my back last November.
You know when you write a lot you don't see your mistakes until you post. There's times that I go over what I write 2-3 times and still find mistakes later on.
Later, have to edit the last post, I wrote whether wrong.
Come back again.

Monday, November 16, 2009

After a visit to the Doc.

It's official, deep deep chest bruise. hurts like heck. They took chest and left hand x-rays and I have nothing broken, thank God. My hand still hurts since my fall, let's say hard crash (sounds better) the week before the Reagan Time Trial but nothing showed. Have to live with it for now I guess.
I'll see how I feel by Wednesday and make a decision whether I'll go to Raystown lake to ride the Allegripis trails this weekend. I have to get a sub for my spinning classes, should not be a problem I hope.
Thanks for checking in.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Findley one more time

Trying to take advantage of the weather I headed out to Findley State park again this morning and it was better than yesterday. Ken, Ray, Randy and Chuck joined me. We did a fast 51 minute first lap and I decided to go on my own since I put in 3 laps yesterday. Yesterday I did a one lap warm up and then went for it and did a 49:35 lap with one nasty fall that bruised my left calf when the left pedal hit me. Today it was worse, I may have bruised ribs, can't take a deep breath and my chest hurts. In two days I did this section 5 times quite fast and today my front wheel hit one of the roots the wrong way and went down hard landing on my chest. I took a different line than the first 5 times and the 6th time was the winner. My saddle got all screwed up and it's going to saddle heaven. I need to get a new one it can't be fixed the rails are uneven now. That should tell you how hard I went down. For the weekend, a little over 5 hours and almost 50 miles, all off road. Not bad for November. Couple of short videos below.

Saturday, November 14, 2009


Went to Findley State Park again this morning and put in 3 laps. The place is completely dry and fast. It was good to see quite a few people out there, specially entire families riding their bikes through the trails. The family that bikes together stays together.
Some people are going to Westbranch tomorrow, if you are not, go to Reagan or Findley. Tuesday night we did a night ride at Reagan and it was awesome. First time out for me riding the trails at night and it was a totally different experience. Great fun.
Get out and ride, who knows how many more good days we have left. Hoping to get one more week of dry weather so I can try out the Single Speed I have on order and get next week.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Zen has, had, has a friend

Didn't take Zen to work for a couple of days to let him cool off a little bit and to my surprise when I opened my bag to dig a snack out of there he poped out.

He quickly went to work trying to find me a new camera since mine died and I've been using my
He also rang the bell in my cubi-hole. We ring the bell for orders over 10K for everybody to know in the
He also got to talking with Grouch and spent a little time getting to know him until they got into a fight and we had to separate them

But they quickly got back to talking and being friends. That is until Grouch sees this picture and the two little fingers on the back of his head.

I hate this new template i'm using, it screws up everything. I don't even remember how to get the old one back. If anybody knows how, leave me a comment.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Long day

I swear Zen was on drugs or something today. I took him to work with me again today and he would not sit still. I caught him on the climbing wall and he quickly climb into my coat.

Then I walk out of the cubi-hole for a minute and when I came back he was tanning himself. This little dude was driving me nuts today.

After he finished tanning himself he insisted on helping me move some boxes with last fiscal years files (my hole is a storage area too). The joy of being the only man in the sales department. We have to keep the ladies' cubi-holes nice and clean.

Here he is lifting with his legs the way you are supposed to.

But then somebody called me and I kind off jerked the box and poor Zen took a nasty hit.

We had to call maintenance to come get him out, boy was he mad at me. It took us about 5 minutes to lift that box off him, we had to be very careful and block off the area while we worked getting him out from under the box.
After we got him all cleaned up and made sure he was ok. we gave him ibuprofen and a chocolate chip cookie and he was happy again.
Didn't I say earlier in a previous post he was going to get his, well there you have it. You better learn your lesson dude or is going to get worse. My camera pooped today and took my daughters camera and is still showing 2004. Change the date girl.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Keeping and eye on Zen

I'm going to have to keep an eye on Zen. Today I walked out of my cubi-hole and when I got back he had taken over my computer. Just sitting there admiring himself.
Then later on he was trying to tell me something pointing at the world map. I think he wants to go to the Land Down Under. Maybe one day little buddy maybe one day, It's on my bucket list.
Hey, I just noticed my two speaker guardians are in the background. The little soccer player and the princess. There's a whole lot of crap in there too. I have to put sometime aside to clean my desk. It's true what they say "a messy desk is the sign of a genius".
Later, come back for more tomorrow.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Findley State Park

The trail was in excellent shape. Zen and I did 2 1/2 laps. 50 degrees when we started and 65 when we finished. I really thought the place would be packed but there was just a few of us.
Zen had a lot of fun and at the beggining was winded but then he was ripping the trail and carving the turns after the first lap. He wanted to go for more but 2 1/2 laps is all I can take riding a fully rigid SS.

First lap he pushed the bike a couple of times but after that...

He was ripping it.

On our way home, nice and buckled.

Finished the day raking more leaves and finishing the front yard. And what did Zen do...

He just sat on the front porch and watched me work.
He'll get his soon.

Saturday, November 7, 2009


The Chronicles of Riddick, The Chronicles of Narnia, now presenting,

They will be told. Check often Zen will be every where and he wants to share his Chronicles with
the world.
Zen was so happy when he got his Solon Bicycle jersey that he came outside to help me raking leaves.
He tried but I couldn't find gloves small enough to fit him. he could hardly lift his arms.
A trip to Toys R Us for cycling shorts is in the plans. He likes the baggies riding shorts, but I told him that if he wants to look like a real cyclist he needs "real" shorts.
Tomorrow we are planning on hitting Findley State park for a little mountain biking. Zen can't wait to hit the trails.

Riding with the Zen Master

The zen and I went out for a ride this morning and we couldn't believe it was so warm. I rode the SS road bike for a couple of hrs. Zen rode his mtb. it is his only bike. It was very windy and riding a SS made it harder but it was a good workout. After the ride Zen was so tired he went
head first in the recoverite.

Friday, November 6, 2009


Monday, November 2, 2009

Red Flannel agony

Yesterday Ken, Kevin and I rode the red Flannel which is the last organized ride of the year.
The Lorain Wheelmen do a great job with this ride. Randy, Brenda, Paul, Sandy and a bunch more opted for the wimpy 30 miles. We rode the 65 miler. Everything went well the first half of the ride, I really didn't want to do the 65 but Ken assured me that it was going to be an "easy" ride. Should have done the 30 miler when he said that. I didn't do much riding in October only a ride here and there plus plyometrics and core work. Anyway, like I said the first half went well my legs felt ok just a little heavy. We made it to the soup and chilly rest stop and even though I said I wanted some, I didn't eat any. I didn't want to get sick, I'm not used to eating that stuff when I ride. Plus something was telling me the rest of the ride wasn't going to be like the first half. Boy, was I right. Kevin started working on his endurance wattage and pulled for miles and miles and miles. I told Ken, he needs the work I'm staying behind him. In one brief instance that I managed to ride next to him he asked how fast we were going since he didn't have a speedometer and I said 22-23 for the last 10 freaking miles and I'm hanging on for dear life. He just casually responded " I didn't think we were going that fast" well boy, you were. After that it was more of the same, my watts were illuminating the way, if it was dark you would have seen the dim glow coming off my body. Clothes were starting to litter the roads, my suitcase of courage (more like a coffin) had just a small opening for a while but it was fully open and the hinges were coming off. On the last freeway overpass I fought like heck to stay with him and Ken and drop the free loaders that were attached to our wheels, mission acomplished but now the watts were down to milliwatts and fading. Last steep short hill and he dropped us like a bad habit. Ken and I fough to stay with a tandem and another guy and finally on the last little lump on the road when we were almost on to his wheel again I had had enough and finally I went from a 200 watt bulb to just a flicker flickering to stay alive. It just so happens that what I was looking forward to came into view, the bike path back to Oberlin. We caught up to him and rode at a recovery pace the rest of the way. Thanks for the ride Kevin, I had fun and didn't realize I had that much fitness left after not doing much in October.
Before I forget, thanks for the easy ride Ken, I'll pay you back soon.