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General Discussion => Throw Down the Gauntlet => Topic started by: jordanread on April 02, 2015, 05:09:52 PM

Title: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jordanread on April 02, 2015, 05:09:52 PM
The cycling challenge for April 2015 is up and ready for you!!

If you logged miles last month, and selected "Remember Me" on the form, you have been added to this month's sheet already.

If you didn't log miles, or are a new participant
Click here to fill out the form. (https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1G16ko4ZH7DvzpXC-xTwRMe6LEpskDcwoVausbbc9oF8/viewform)

You can access the sheet at this link (https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1E358SOIfLpTHMKscByUjyaazZKe7dLI8IZRY_0HLkPM/edit?usp=sharing).

The historical data on your individual sheets will update from the March challenge a couple times per day, so if you have added miles to last month, and they don't show up, just give it a bit. If they aren't there within a day, or you have any other issues with the sheet, hit me up via email, Google+ Hangouts (http://gplus.to/jordanread), PM, or just comment on this thread.

Happy Cycling!!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Thegoblinchief on April 02, 2015, 05:26:39 PM
Radness!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Longwaytogo on April 02, 2015, 06:18:30 PM
Just joined for the first time! Now that I have a cargo bike I can finally bike more than just recreational mountain biking.

Got started today by biking the kids back and forth to my in-laws for dinner.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: mskyle on April 02, 2015, 07:27:59 PM
I think the number of cyclists on the road tripled in April 1st, even though it was midweek and not particularly nice out. My theory is that people were waiting for their March transit passes to expire before they got back on the bike.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: johnny847 on April 02, 2015, 09:16:27 PM
I'll have low numbers this month, as I am on vacation for two weeks. Also, I am moving out of my furnished apartment to an unfurnished one on 5/1, so I'll need to do some more driving to buy some furniture and move all my stuff.

But I'm cutting my housing costs in half, and I'll get to commute 8.8 miles by bike everyday so it's worth it!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Thegoblinchief on April 03, 2015, 06:07:58 AM
I'm out for now, as my new work project requires me to take the train to the other end of the country for the week. No cycling there, I'll be walking instead. :)

Honestly, I prefer walking to biking. Have fun!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: b4u2 on April 03, 2015, 06:26:41 AM
Finally got my bicycle lock. I just ordered a cable lock with a resettable number code. Cost about $11. It's supposed to get cold again next week. I brought my Harley home from storage so every day will be a tough decision for me lol. 
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jorjor on April 03, 2015, 08:24:50 AM
This will be my first full month in the challenge. I had been commuting everyday before last May when a mountain biking accident left me with a broken kneecap. By the time I was healthy again it was winter so I kept driving for the convenience and out of fear that a fall on ice would re-break it since the bone was still strengthening.

I'm back into bike commuting again full-time now though. The goal is to ride to work everyday this month (8 miles round-trip) and supplement that with enough other riding to hit at least 600 miles total for the month.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: PindyStache on April 03, 2015, 05:40:23 PM
This will be my first full month in the challenge. I had been commuting everyday before last May when a mountain biking accident left me with a broken kneecap. By the time I was healthy again it was winter so I kept driving for the convenience and out of fear that a fall on ice would re-break it since the bone was still strengthening.

I'm back into bike commuting again full-time now though. The goal is to ride to work everyday this month (8 miles round-trip) and supplement that with enough other riding to hit at least 600 miles total for the month.

Glad you are well and welcome. 600 miles is an impressive goal!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: ohyonghao on April 03, 2015, 07:10:51 PM
Signed up for a Century ride on May 2nd, look forward to completing that.  Debating on if I should ride to the event or not, 25mi each way.  Hope to get a good couple rides in this weekend.

This week I've been taking the long route home, but I got a flat one day, and now whatever I do my disc brake is rubbing, I think I banged up something when putting the rear wheel back on, but my adjustments aren't helping.  While in the stand I can spin it, no sound, but as soon as I sit on it and ride, there it goes again.  Will have to look at it more this weekend and get it fixed by Monday.  Perhaps bleeding the brakes?
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: johnny847 on April 03, 2015, 07:21:52 PM
Signed up for a Century ride on May 2nd, look forward to completing that.  Debating on if I should ride to the event or not, 25mi each way.  Hope to get a good couple rides in this weekend.

This week I've been taking the long route home, but I got a flat one day, and now whatever I do my disc brake is rubbing, I think I banged up something when putting the rear wheel back on, but my adjustments aren't helping.  While in the stand I can spin it, no sound, but as soon as I sit on it and ride, there it goes again.  Will have to look at it more this weekend and get it fixed by Monday.  Perhaps bleeding the brakes?

The tire compresses a little bit when you sit on it - which is probably why you're observing different behavior on and off the bike.

Sounds like you need to readjust your brakes.

Did you buy any chance forget the tighten the brakes after you loosened them to remove the wheel while repairing the flat?
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Thegoblinchief on April 04, 2015, 06:10:11 AM
Axle starting to have excess play? Wheel spokes loose somewhere? Both of those would cause the wheel to warp under weight.

Not sure  why tire compression would affect disc brakes.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: johnny847 on April 04, 2015, 08:56:28 AM
Not sure  why tire compression would affect disc brakes.

Oops. I was thinking of rim brakes.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Nancy on April 06, 2015, 06:34:19 AM
Took a spin on a crossrip elite yesterday. Now I know what I'm missing. Doh!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: ohyonghao on April 06, 2015, 12:11:41 PM
Signed up for a Century ride on May 2nd, look forward to completing that.  Debating on if I should ride to the event or not, 25mi each way.  Hope to get a good couple rides in this weekend.

This week I've been taking the long route home, but I got a flat one day, and now whatever I do my disc brake is rubbing, I think I banged up something when putting the rear wheel back on, but my adjustments aren't helping.  While in the stand I can spin it, no sound, but as soon as I sit on it and ride, there it goes again.  Will have to look at it more this weekend and get it fixed by Monday.  Perhaps bleeding the brakes?

The tire compresses a little bit when you sit on it - which is probably why you're observing different behavior on and off the bike.

Sounds like you need to readjust your brakes.

Did you buy any chance forget the tighten the brakes after you loosened them to remove the wheel while repairing the flat?
Axle starting to have excess play? Wheel spokes loose somewhere? Both of those would cause the wheel to warp under weight.

Not sure  why tire compression would affect disc brakes.
These are disc brakes, which then again wheel being out of true shouldn't affect it either since disc is connected to hub, but I did think perhaps it was the axle, but tried tightening that on my way home during one of 5 stops to fix it.  I fixed it last night by taking the wheel back off, using a tire lever to push the slave cylinder back in and reassembling.  This gave it more room to play with the adjustment bolts and I had a quiet ride into work today.

Thanks for the suggestions!  With quiet brakes I should now be able to continue accumulating 10+ miles a day.

This weekend I had planned on a longer ride, but the first day was fouled up by Kentucky flooding.  I know some of you are thinking, "What would a Kentucky flood have to do with your ride in Oregon?"  My friends GPS unit was next day shipped to my house, only that the airport in Kentucky had flooding issues and the plane never left.  We then learn that everything you see about UPS shipping is a lie.  Those arrival scans and departure scans, fabricated by a system to let customers feel like they know where their package is, but really is little more than a computer program telling you where it should be according to the itinerary.  Some customer service reps know this issue, others obviously don't and we talked to a mix of them, and the final one said, yes your package is at the hub where it should be and you can pick it up.

Instead of riding our bikes around getting 50-80 miles we ended up in a clown car going to UPS just to be told about the above scheme and that we were the 10th person there that morning.  After getting back to my place, disappointed that he won't have the GPS unit, we got changed and were ready to ride... except my friend realizes he left his shoes at home and had worn sandals to my place.  Options were fairly thin on the ground, and me already being a much stronger athlete and faster than him we realized that even if we switched out flat pedals it was going to be a sucky ride.

By the time this got done it was already almost 1 o'clock and due to the Easter holiday and Costco's observance of it we needed to be going to Costco that night before 6pm.  So what was originally planned to be a fun 50-80 mile day ended up being a fast 40 mi (18.4mph average) with little elevation.

I then planned on Sunday to try and get up early and do a century ride which I had mapped out.  A few problems cropped up in this plan.  First, I got to sleep too late to get up early.  Second, getting out the door 2.5 hours late I no longer had time for the century ride.  Third, going up the hill I realize my calf that has been bothering me while running is starting to feel a little bothersome while riding.  I then decide to call off the ride at the top of a 5 mile long hill and 1650' of elevation.  I descend back into town with a total of 26 mi.

A weekend which was to have around 120 miles turned into 66 miles.  A little disappointing, but I kicked ass on that hill.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: SantaFeSteve on April 06, 2015, 01:54:12 PM
After 3 months of progressively more miles I am anticipating significantly fewer bike miles in April.  No face punches please.

After seeing the ridiculous (you "guys" are awesome) miles some of you post every month, and realizing that my 4.6 mile roundtrip commute is almost too short to bike, I have now decided to up my game and walk to/from work. Now that the weather is getting warmer I hope to log some nice fun rides, but I am going to focus on walking for my commute to get a little more exercise.

Keep on Pedaling!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jorjor on April 06, 2015, 02:45:48 PM
After 3 months of progressively more miles I am anticipating significantly fewer bike miles in April.  No face punches please.

After seeing the ridiculous (you "guys" are awesome) miles some of you post every month, and realizing that my 4.6 mile roundtrip commute is almost too short to bike, I have now decided to up my game and walk to/from work. Now that the weather is getting warmer I hope to log some nice fun rides, but I am going to focus on walking for my commute to get a little more exercise.

Keep on Pedaling!

Just take the long way! There is a park near my place. If I ever want to add-on to my 4 mile one-way trip, I just hop on that and ride a few laps.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jorjor on April 06, 2015, 02:53:49 PM
This weekend was 46 miles on Saturday on mostly gravel and dirt with a little bit of pavement. I had a staredown with a herd of bighorn sheep that were in the way at mile 5 and another one with some loose cattle in the road at around mile 25. The little bit of pavement I had included some guy who yelled at me out his window while I was in the bike lane (I really wish the driver would stop and chat a bit so I can point out the irony that the guy sitting behind the wheel of a car is yelling "Pussy!" at the guy next to him traveling under his own power on a bike.)

Sunday we had guests over all day for the holiday, and I contemplated riding in the morning before people showed up but opted to not deal with tired legs and cold weather since it hadn't warmed up yet. There's where I needed that guy yelling at me.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: ohyonghao on April 06, 2015, 03:54:07 PM
After 3 months of progressively more miles I am anticipating significantly fewer bike miles in April.  No face punches please.

After seeing the ridiculous (you "guys" are awesome) miles some of you post every month, and realizing that my 4.6 mile roundtrip commute is almost too short to bike, I have now decided to up my game and walk to/from work. Now that the weather is getting warmer I hope to log some nice fun rides, but I am going to focus on walking for my commute to get a little more exercise.

Keep on Pedaling!

It should be noted that my ridiculous miles almost all come from leisure time.  If you look at my chart you'll notice a 6.2 mile 5 days a week as car replacement miles, this would be my 3.1 mile each way commute to work, which is just a hair longer than your presumably 2.3 mile trip.  Either way you are still way better than the people trugging along in their clown cars.

Happy trails!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: GreenPen on April 07, 2015, 10:10:09 AM
Finally got my bicycle lock. I just ordered a cable lock with a resettable number code. Cost about $11.

I would be careful going cheap on a bicycle lock. Most likely, the lock you bought can be easily cut with cable or bolt cutters (unlike a U-lock).

Of course, the $11 option might be fine, depending on your location and cost of bike. But it's something to keep in mind.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jorjor on April 08, 2015, 08:38:05 AM
I have a Strava account to track my riding. Besides being a great tool for tracking your mileage (especially if you have a competitive streak), they announced yesterday that they teamed up with CompetitiveCyclist.com to award you $1 in store credit at Competitive Cyclist for each hour you ride and upload to Strava, up to $40 per month.

What you need:
1. A bike, and the desire to ride it.
2. A Strava account. Totally free unless you sign up for their premium version for heart rate and power tracking and all that jazz.
3. A CompetitveCyclist account. Totally free unless you give into the desire to buy a bunch of stuff.
4. Something GPS-enabled.  If you have a GPS enabled Android or iPhone you can just download the Strava app. You can also use a Garmin if you have one of those. The app is totally free. The phone or Garmin is totally not free.

From my reading through the details, I see some things of note:
1. Moving time only. Makes sense. It stops someone from setting their GPS all day to record time when they aren't really riding.
2. It looks like you earn credit in half hour increments for one ride/activity. I take that to mean that a 1:45 ride and a 1:15 ride would be. $1.50 + $1.00 = $2.50, not a full $3.00 for 3 hours ridden. I also take that to mean that two commutes of 15 minutes each would not get you $0.50 since neither were at least a half hour, but I haven't confirmed that. One option might be to start an activity for your morning commute, pause it all day, and hit record again for your evening commute so it all registers as one activity and you add up to 30 minutes. Or, if you're like me you like to ride your bike anyway and you'll just add-on to your commute to hit the 30 minutes and being on the bike more wouldn't exactly be the worst thing in the world.
3. Credits expire on the last day of the following month, so you can have up to $80 in your account at once. You can't just accumulate points enough to buy a new bike from there.

Unless there's a catch that I'm missing, I'm planning on using this to get a bunch of the maintenance/upkeep stuff that I'd have to eventually buy to keep my bike running smoothly anyway. Tires, tubes, chain lube, degreaser, small accessories. I'm trying to accumulate 30-40 hours per month on the bike anyway, and I don't spend $30-40/mo on those upkeep items. Free shipping on orders over $50, so if I save up my points and use them every other month, then my maintenance items just became extremely cheap or extremely free.

I hope this helps some of you out on bike maintenance costs.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: mskyle on April 08, 2015, 10:57:05 AM
Wow, I am definitely signing up for this! I might have to take the long way to work to make a full half-hour, though.

I am considering a moderately un-mustachian purchase - unmustachian because of the expense, but at least it's still a bike! I found a used Pashley Princess bike on Craigslist for less than half what it usually retails for in the U.S. (still expensive at $700) and am going to check it out this weekend. It's a gorgeous, heavy, luxurious kind of bike. Would really smooth out the bumps on the construction-heavy route I take to work.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Thegoblinchief on April 08, 2015, 10:57:35 AM
Cool, I already use Strava but I'll check that out.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: TrMama on April 08, 2015, 11:09:12 AM
I was finally able to find a reasonably priced old bike trailer on Craigslist yesterday. Seems I live in a city full of people who want kid trailers to convert into cargo trailers and anything that's posted for <$100 goes in minutes. I've been looking for one of these for over a year. I can't wait to start doing grocery trips with it and may also use it to do a walk/boat in camping trip with the kids this summer.

In not so good news, my commuter is in the shop getting it's bottom bracket replaced. I'm driving in the meantime and it sucks.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: ohyonghao on April 08, 2015, 01:11:48 PM
Thanks for the tip jorjor!  I use Strava all the time and was just thinking about maintenance yesterday after seeing I've already accumulated 1600+ miles this year.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: b4u2 on April 08, 2015, 07:41:45 PM
I got my mt bike for $100 and spent $11 on the lock. Even the more expensive locks and cables could be cut easily. I read many reviews and decided to go with this one. I doubt thft is high at my work place and there will be better and more expensive bikes to grab than mine. If mine does get stolen it's only $100 for now.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: PindyStache on April 12, 2015, 06:51:08 PM
I know others on this forum have done this before, but for the first time I went to Costco by bike! ~11 miles each way, so not too far but I brought DS (3 yo) along in a bike seat. Best part was avoiding the craziness of the parking lot--they actually have a nice bike-friendly setup with racks and a ramp coming up from the back of the store. Also cuts down on extraneous large-portion purchases. 10/10, would Costco bike again.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: ohyonghao on April 12, 2015, 08:05:00 PM
Completed my first Century ride today, and boy are my legs tired.  Didn't start to feel it until I layed down on my bed.  I'm signed up for another one on May 2nd, should be a bit better than just the solo ride I did today.

Bonus points today, my father needed me to pick up a prescription this week and deliver it this weekend, so half of those miles are car replacement miles :-D.

Next weekend my wife's friends want to take her to the Outlet stores and say I should ride there, so I may get another 75 miles in that weekend.  Really great time today.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: b4u2 on April 13, 2015, 05:24:51 AM
Just rode to work at 6am. It was only 2 miles and 50 degrees. I wore my normal clothes (jeans, t-shirt,light jacket,gloves) I was going to wear a knit hat but thankfully I couldn't find it because I got hot. I forgot to time myself but it seemed decent. I'll check my time on the way home since there will be more traffic.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: ohyonghao on April 13, 2015, 08:52:51 AM
Just rode to work at 6am. It was only 2 miles and 50 degrees. I wore my normal clothes (jeans, t-shirt,light jacket,gloves) I was going to wear a knit hat but thankfully I couldn't find it because I got hot. I forgot to time myself but it seemed decent. I'll check my time on the way home since there will be more traffic.
Awesome!  I always find the spring and fall harder to know what to wear, especially when the mornings can be cold and the evenings warm.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: mskyle on April 13, 2015, 09:16:00 AM
Today was my first morning commute over 50F, and it felt so great to ride with no jacket! I threw on a (semi-decorative) scarf because I couldn't believe that I could really just cycle in street clothes, but I was a little too warm.

The local Bike Cops were out today. As soon as it gets nice out, there's always a guy at one intersection on my route, pulling over cyclists who go through the pedestrian light. I think it's generally pretty easy to get off with a warning if you're a first-time offender and not belligerent, but they can slap you with a $300 ticket! However, if you get off your bike and walk it across the street, then stop at the light before you take a right turn on red, you're OK.

I will admit, I often run other pedestrian lights if there are no pedestrians. And I even run this particular light when I know the weather is bad enough that the cop won't be there. So I don't know if anyone's learning any bike safety lessons but I guess the city is accumulating some ticket revenue.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: TrMama on April 13, 2015, 09:50:09 AM
I know others on this forum have done this before, but for the first time I went to Costco by bike! ~11 miles each way, so not too far but I brought DS (3 yo) along in a bike seat. Best part was avoiding the craziness of the parking lot--they actually have a nice bike-friendly setup with racks and a ramp coming up from the back of the store. Also cuts down on extraneous large-portion purchases. 10/10, would Costco bike again.

I also did my first Costco run this weekend. Also the first trip with my new-to-me bike trailer. We live close though so the only badass part was that it was pouring rain on the way home. Being able to skip the congestion and parking lot mahem was nice. Plus, someone cheered for me on the way home.

Note To Self: Check the weather before carefully wrapping the eggs in your rain jacket and bungy cording everything together. Also, remember to bring a garbage bag for the toilet paper so it doesn't get damp.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: b4u2 on April 14, 2015, 05:14:42 AM
It was 35 degrees this morning. I almost caved and didn't ride but this afternoon is going to be 70 so I figured why miss half a day. I also knew from yesterdays ride I would be pretty warm wearing similar clothes. My ears got a little cold, still couldn't find that hat, my hands did ok with the gloves I had but I do need something warmer when winter comes around. So far 2 days in a row biking to work.

I did find that raising the seat a little more on my bicycle helped my knees and quads. I still wear my boots as well, biker boots lol. When it gets to be warmer and shorts weather I'll switch to shoes.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: mskyle on April 14, 2015, 08:45:56 AM
Note To Self: Check the weather before carefully wrapping the eggs in your rain jacket and bungy cording everything together. Also, remember to bring a garbage bag for the toilet paper so it doesn't get damp.

I remember losing a bag of sugar on my first bike grocery run. It didn't rain ALL DAY except for the 15 minutes I was on the bike. Uncool, weather. Uncool.

I am seeing SO MANY PEOPLE on bikes! All different shapes and sizes and styles of bikes and people. It's great! Makes me really happy I live and work in such bike-friendly communities.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jorjor on April 14, 2015, 10:56:54 AM
I am a big baseball fan and especially a big Cubs fan (they were in town to play the Rockies), so after going to join some friends for Opening Day last week and being out and about for a couple days in a row, my body hit a wall so no riding over the weekend and I still feel sluggish this week. The 600 mile goal seems in doubt.

That's fine though. Since I've started commuting more, I've had time to think about enjoying my rides instead of feeling obligated to go get a hard training ride in. More emphasis on using my bike for transportation and entertainment, less on trying to set a new personal record up the local climb. A mileage goal doesn't seem as important. Looking for places to replace driving and enjoying my time on the bike seems more important. (I still do enjoy going hard up climbs though, so there's a time and place for that...just not every weekend.)
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: ohyonghao on April 14, 2015, 12:32:08 PM
I am a big baseball fan and especially a big Cubs fan (they were in town to play the Rockies), so after going to join some friends for Opening Day last week and being out and about for a couple days in a row, my body hit a wall so no riding over the weekend and I still feel sluggish this week. The 600 mile goal seems in doubt.

That's fine though. Since I've started commuting more, I've had time to think about enjoying my rides instead of feeling obligated to go get a hard training ride in. More emphasis on using my bike for transportation and entertainment, less on trying to set a new personal record up the local climb. A mileage goal doesn't seem as important. Looking for places to replace driving and enjoying my time on the bike seems more important. (I still do enjoy going hard up climbs though, so there's a time and place for that...just not every weekend.)

I've found myself realizing this recently too, partially due to my wife's complaint of her never going anywhere on the weekend :-D.  I've started alternating hard weekends and short ride weekends.  On short ride weekends I do about 1-2 hour ride early in the morning, go as hard and fast as I can, then enjoy the rest of the day.  On hard weekends I'll plan at least one day of 40+ miles, and depending on other plans, either a short ride the next day, or another long ride.

As a rule I remind myself that if I see something that looks like it would be an awesome picture, I stop and take the damn picture, who cares if it slows down my segment by 1 minute.

Pleasantly though this weekend I get to ride more again because my wife's friends are taking her out.  I have to admit though, my video game time has been suffering quite a bit, along with my blog.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Mrs. PoP on April 14, 2015, 06:58:21 PM
Delayed in filling in my mileage this month, but I'm finally caught up!  Have still been riding, though.  =)
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jorjor on April 14, 2015, 07:28:59 PM
I am a big baseball fan and especially a big Cubs fan (they were in town to play the Rockies), so after going to join some friends for Opening Day last week and being out and about for a couple days in a row, my body hit a wall so no riding over the weekend and I still feel sluggish this week. The 600 mile goal seems in doubt.

That's fine though. Since I've started commuting more, I've had time to think about enjoying my rides instead of feeling obligated to go get a hard training ride in. More emphasis on using my bike for transportation and entertainment, less on trying to set a new personal record up the local climb. A mileage goal doesn't seem as important. Looking for places to replace driving and enjoying my time on the bike seems more important. (I still do enjoy going hard up climbs though, so there's a time and place for that...just not every weekend.)

I've found myself realizing this recently too, partially due to my wife's complaint of her never going anywhere on the weekend :-D.  I've started alternating hard weekends and short ride weekends.  On short ride weekends I do about 1-2 hour ride early in the morning, go as hard and fast as I can, then enjoy the rest of the day.  On hard weekends I'll plan at least one day of 40+ miles, and depending on other plans, either a short ride the next day, or another long ride.

As a rule I remind myself that if I see something that looks like it would be an awesome picture, I stop and take the damn picture, who cares if it slows down my segment by 1 minute.

Pleasantly though this weekend I get to ride more again because my wife's friends are taking her out.  I have to admit though, my video game time has been suffering quite a bit, along with my blog.

Spending too much of my weekend on a bike has been a concern of mine as well. I've been contemplating for a while going to 4 days per week so I can ride one weekday and feel okay with a bike-free weekend day. Though, going part-time would lead to a cut in income which would slow savings. I'm not sure which way would make me happier. I have plenty of places where I can trim expenses though. Maybe I can have both!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: b4u2 on April 15, 2015, 05:35:03 AM
I hope I am filling out the April sheet correctly and not messing up any formulas. The sheet seems different from last month.

Day 3 riding bike to work. It was 45 degrees this morning and will be 70 by the time I get off work. Opted for shorts today and didn't mind the cold. I have been "running" as well and my old knee injuries are popping back up. I have been applying ice and wearing me compression sleeves and knee bands. This body of mine is falling apart.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: mskyle on April 15, 2015, 11:17:34 AM
For anyone using the Strava/Competitive Cyclist trick, it seems like rides need to be longer than one hour in order to be counted, even though rides over one hour will be counted in 1/2 hour intervals. But, it's OK if you leave the app running and pause/pick back up on a "ride" after a full workday. I might try treating the whole work week as a "ride" and see how that works (won't do this with my phone - it uses too much battery - but I have an old Garmin watch that is pretty efficient).

I bought my big heavy Dutch-style bike yesterday. It was not in quite as good condition as I hoped but I paid a little less than I was prepared to. With a little tuning up and dusting it's going to be a gorgeous bike and, surprisingly, my morning commute took about the same amount of time as it does on my Trek7.3fx. I thought it would be slower. That said, the way home is much more uphill :(.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jorjor on April 15, 2015, 01:21:18 PM
For anyone using the Strava/Competitive Cyclist trick, it seems like rides need to be longer than one hour in order to be counted, even though rides over one hour will be counted in 1/2 hour intervals. But, it's OK if you leave the app running and pause/pick back up on a "ride" after a full workday. I might try treating the whole work week as a "ride" and see how that works (won't do this with my phone - it uses too much battery - but I have an old Garmin watch that is pretty efficient).

I bought my big heavy Dutch-style bike yesterday. It was not in quite as good condition as I hoped but I paid a little less than I was prepared to. With a little tuning up and dusting it's going to be a gorgeous bike and, surprisingly, my morning commute took about the same amount of time as it does on my Trek7.3fx. I thought it would be slower. That said, the way home is much more uphill :(.

You can also pull down the GPX file from multiple uploads and play with the code to lump it all together as one file, then re-upload it. You can search something like "Combining rides in Strava" to figure it out.

I think it starts giving credit at 30 minutes, but I am not 100% sure. The rides I've done since I started, in moving time:

1:18 ($1.00)
0:33 ($0.50?)
1:40 ($1.50)
0:18
0:18
1:00 ($1.00)
0:16
0:16
0:38

I currently have $4.00 in my account, but if you add the rides up that are >1 hour then it comes to $3.50. That makes me think they gave $0.50 credit for the 0:33 ride. The 0:38 ride was yesterday and it usually takes a day or so for the credit to hit, so we'll see if I get any credit.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: mskyle on April 16, 2015, 12:57:23 PM
Interesting - I have a 59:57 ride (DAMMIT!) from Monday that hasn't shown up. I have a 38 minute ride from yesterday, so if that one comes through maybe the Monday ride was a fluke.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jorjor on April 16, 2015, 06:46:16 PM
I never got anything for the ride the other day, and it would have shown up by now so it probably does start at an hour. I don't know where the other $0.50 came from. Maybe it starts at an hour per day, and the 0:33 + 1:40 on the same day equaled 2 hours? Maybe it was just a fluke. I don't know.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: b4u2 on April 17, 2015, 05:15:43 AM
5 days in a row riding! It's been a nice 5 days of riding. Clear weather and temps just right for me. There is rain in the forecast which I am not set up for just yet so I'll have to keep an eye on that.

Where exactly am I supposed to track my miles on that spreadsheet? I'm not sure I am using it right.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: MLKnits on April 17, 2015, 07:02:46 AM
Fabulous! It's been several years since I last commuted by bike--during law school, I used to bike absolutely everywhere. It's nice to be back in the saddle!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: mskyle on April 17, 2015, 07:17:49 AM
5 days in a row riding! It's been a nice 5 days of riding. Clear weather and temps just right for me. There is rain in the forecast which I am not set up for just yet so I'll have to keep an eye on that.

Where exactly am I supposed to track my miles on that spreadsheet? I'm not sure I am using it right.

Awesome! Way to get in a full week!

The main spreadsheet has a bunch of sub-sheets (look for tabs at the bottom) with everyone's names on them. Look for the tab with your name - the rest should be pretty clear.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jorjor on April 17, 2015, 09:38:48 AM
37 and rainy for the commute this morning. I was dry and toasty in my rainproof gear. The only friend I met along the way was a mallard duck splashing in the puddles. I loved it. I really should just move to Belgium already.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: b4u2 on April 17, 2015, 09:43:19 AM
37 and rainy for the commute this morning. I was dry and toasty in my rainproof gear. The only friend I met along the way was a mallard duck splashing in the puddles. I loved it. I really should just move to Belgium already.

What's the rain gear? How do you keep your shoes dry?

I went back to the form and put my numbers in and now they work right.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jorjor on April 17, 2015, 10:13:17 AM
37 and rainy for the commute this morning. I was dry and toasty in my rainproof gear. The only friend I met along the way was a mallard duck splashing in the puddles. I loved it. I really should just move to Belgium already.

What's the rain gear? How do you keep your shoes dry?

I went back to the form and put my numbers in and now they work right.

Most of the stuff I acquired before I found this site. I normally wear some sort of spring-like jacket for warmth.

For a rain shell, I have this which is a decent deal at $20: http://www.performancebike.com/bikes/Product_10052_10551_1120930_-1_400070__400070
For pants, I have a thick pair of thermal pants that were bought for cold and keep me warm down below 20 degrees. I have these but there are far cheaper options: http://www.performancebike.com/bikes/Product_10052_10551_1121544_-1_400066__400066
For foot covers, I'd look for the cheapest option that says "waterproof" here: http://www.performancebike.com/bikes/SubCategory_10052_10551_400094_-1_400000_400041

I then have some sort of tight hat under my helmet to cover my head and ears, and gloves for my hands.

My items aren't the cheapest options. Maybe they're a decent investment if they keep you from driving all winter and they are good quality and will last for years, but you can find cheaper options I'm sure.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: ohyonghao on April 17, 2015, 12:20:04 PM
37 and rainy for the commute this morning. I was dry and toasty in my rainproof gear. The only friend I met along the way was a mallard duck splashing in the puddles. I loved it. I really should just move to Belgium already.

What's the rain gear? How do you keep your shoes dry?

I went back to the form and put my numbers in and now they work right.

Most of the stuff I acquired before I found this site. I normally wear some sort of spring-like jacket for warmth.

For a rain shell, I have this which is a decent deal at $20: http://www.performancebike.com/bikes/Product_10052_10551_1120930_-1_400070__400070
For pants, I have a thick pair of thermal pants that were bought for cold and keep me warm down below 20 degrees. I have these but there are far cheaper options: http://www.performancebike.com/bikes/Product_10052_10551_1121544_-1_400066__400066
For foot covers, I'd look for the cheapest option that says "waterproof" here: http://www.performancebike.com/bikes/SubCategory_10052_10551_400094_-1_400000_400041

I then have some sort of tight hat under my helmet to cover my head and ears, and gloves for my hands.

My items aren't the cheapest options. Maybe they're a decent investment if they keep you from driving all winter and they are good quality and will last for years, but you can find cheaper options I'm sure.

One thing is you can look for non bike gear which may be cheaper. 
White Sierra Pants (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002QGHM9I/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1) I have these pants which have worked fine.  They don't provide any thermal protection, other than being wind proof.
Sugoi Rain Covers (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HT495VA/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1) I have cycling shoe covers for my road bike which I use on my commuter too, with the hole on the bottom to allow the cleat through it means I can't just stand in puddles, but while riding my feet stay dry.
Gore Tex (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004QM8G5E/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1) I also have this jacket,  it's a little spendy, but the advantage to a cycling jacket is the arms are longer to compensate for when you are riding.
Sugoi Helmet Cover (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002OWOXZ0/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1) And a helmet cover, which also helps with the cold by keeping the wind out of the helmet.

The pants now are letting in water after 16 months of service.  I have tried some liquid seam sealers before, and may try them again before I give up on this pair.  The shoe covers have been great, dry feet are happy feet.  Jacket is hard to tell if it's just me sweating more, or if it's leaking too much like the pants which were had at the same time.  No problem so far with the helmet cover.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jorjor on April 17, 2015, 12:53:02 PM
Yes, I agree with ohyonghao. The only reason I have any thermal gear is to ride in below-freezing temps (and again, there are other options than what I have). I still do long rides in the winter, and I've been able to do fine with 60 mile rides in below freezing temps in those. It gets me out of the house during the winter and I enjoy it. It just depends on what you're looking to do.

I will share a lesson I learned. I bought the items I listed a few years ago and then a month or so later I went to a bike swap meet and was really sad at the money I had spent buying those items. Find out if there is a bike swap meet in your area and plan that as your trip for getting your bike maintenance and gear that you don't want to pay for. The one here had plenty of vendors with dirt cheap clothing, if you were willing to dig through piles and bins to get to them. You can find used parts if you need them and you can sell your own stuff. Here, it costs like $7 entry but is totally worth it if you really need bike parts or clothing.

I've also checked out bike consignment stores for deals. I'll find good deals from time to time on a part I need if I cant find it on craigslist. I use http://theproscloset.com/ because I can have a co-worker who lives in there pick it up for me and not have to pay for shipping. Everything there is sold through eBay auctions.

I know it sounds like I buy a lot of bike stuff (and I probably do), but I've found there are good ways to pick some of these things up along the way without making cycling a huge money pit.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: WerKater on April 20, 2015, 10:25:52 AM
I just did my fastest ride yet this year: 50.5km in 2:17h (commute forth and back). 22.1 km/h on average. The absolutely awesome weather helped a lot, I think. WOOHOO!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: b4u2 on April 20, 2015, 11:22:59 AM
Not set up for rain yet and it's super windy today. Felt good though, I rode 6 days in a row.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Kmp2 on April 20, 2015, 12:32:43 PM
I am back in my old office - 20km ish round trip bike commute.  Yay for biking more miles this month, and now that the studs are officially off (oh oh, here comes the april snowstorm... again) - I am trying to do 30daysofbiking. I started late - so I'm only one week in, but so far so good. The longer commute is wearing me out, but a few shorter rides over the weekend have helped me recover.

I hope everyone is enjoying spring - our earliest trees are just starting to show signs of budding, but I have put away my bike lights for the most part :)
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: GreenPen on April 20, 2015, 12:40:19 PM
So... I caught the century bug (I blame ohyonghao). Last Saturday, I took off before sunrise and rode 107 miles (3400 ft elevation). I kept a relatively slow pace and felt great for the first ~90 miles, but really started to drag after that.

I'm curious about what everyone here does for food on longer rides. Last weekend, I loaded up a saddle bag with about 3000 calories (sandwiches, granola, drink mix... leftover pizza), and essentially had a few picnics. But now that I have this first ride under my belt, I'm interested in getting my time down by training, ditching the saddle bag, and eating on my bike rather than stopping.

Should I just suck it up and buy a bunch of GU packets ($1 per 100 calories)? Is there a less expensive way to get enough calories in a tiny pouch?
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: mskyle on April 20, 2015, 01:04:53 PM
If you're inclined towards GU, you might want to consider just picking up one of those squeeze bottles of honey. I have marathoner/triathlete friends who do that. Or if you feel silly drinking from a bear's head, just bring candy.

They're all awful for your teeth, though! Only take the straight sugar stuff when you're on long rides and will crash otherwise.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jorjor on April 20, 2015, 01:07:20 PM
In the one century ride I did (on my own, so no food stations or support), I had a bunch of granola bars and fruit. I wait for GU shot blocks to go on sale and grab some of those because the GU gel packets taste awful to me and popping a couple of the shot blocks are more efficient. I've seen some cycling food recipe books that I've been meaning to check out from the library.

I had the same problem as you though. I hit a wall at about 90 miles and the last 10 miles or so just dragged on. Luckily, I ran into a friend who nursed me through the end. I actually had to work that day since it was our busy season, so I went with my wife and grabbed a Chipotle burrito for lunch. She had to sit me down because I almost collapsed because of malnourishment. I then went and worked for 7 hours.

I guess what I'm trying to say is don't take any advice on century nutrition from me.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: ohyonghao on April 20, 2015, 04:07:02 PM
For my century ride I had Clif bars, which I get at Costco, or now Winco who has a better price in a smaller box and more variety.  Those run about $0.70/bar, which is 250 calories.  At the 80mi point I had finished the last of my bars (I brought 3 and stupidly didn't grab an extra at my house which was the midpoint stop).  I went through about 9 shot bloks, so another 300 calories there, but didn't start using them till the end, and at that point I had no other nutrition source.

I can't remember what I did for breakfast that morning, usually I'll do 2-3 eggs, 2oz of cheddar (1 in the eggs, the other on the bread), a couple tablespoons of olive oil for scrambling the eggs (scrambling lets the eggs soak up the oil, whereas frying a lot of oil would be left in the pan), and a pretzel role, or toast, aiming for about 1000 calories.  Drink some coffee, and do a check over the bike to give myself about 30 minutes to begin digestion before heading out.  I open one of the Clif Bars before leaving so I can easily access it while riding, and at the next stop after finishing I'll open the next one.  Still working on the opening while riding.

I also drink Gatorade which I make from powder (last month I mentioned my experiment in making my own).  I've been experimenting with strength of solution and find that 50% of recommended and it keeps me thirsty.  Yesterday I rode with 25% of recommended and did well, except the heat sucked all the water from me twice as fast as normal.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: oblivo on April 20, 2015, 06:01:28 PM
I'm in
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: lhamo on April 21, 2015, 04:59:07 AM
Back in the saddle again.  I didn't bike at all in February/March due to weather/work and travel schedules/general stress and grumpiness.  Weather this week has been lovely and air quality decent.  Feels good to be able to get to/from work reasonably quickly and get some exercise.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: MLKnits on April 21, 2015, 06:41:03 AM
Every time I update my page on the spreadsheet I feel like I'm bringing the average down ;) I suppose at least I get mustachian cred for having a very short commute. Y'all will just have to up your goals to keep me from ruining the curve!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: mskyle on April 21, 2015, 07:22:43 AM
Competitive Cyclist shut down their Strava points program! What a bummer. It did seem too good to be true/not well thought-out. They say it will come back in May and I imagine when it does there will be some caveat that you can only spend your credits on whole bikes or purchases over $500 or something.

I'm going to have a relatively bike-heavy week (for me) because I'm dogsitting and need to go home at lunch to feed and walk the dog. My boyfriend was able to take yesterday because he had the day off, but I'm on the hook for the rest of the week. So I'll be doing two 8-mile roundtrips a day instead of one. We'll see how I hold up! I might end up caving and working from home one afternoon or taking an Uber home for the lunch walk, but the weather's supposed to stay pretty nice and hopefully my legs will cooperate.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Russ on April 21, 2015, 08:43:39 AM
I'm curious about what everyone here does for food on longer rides. Last weekend, I loaded up a saddle bag with about 3000 calories (sandwiches, granola, drink mix... leftover pizza), and essentially had a few picnics. But now that I have this first ride under my belt, I'm interested in getting my time down by training, ditching the saddle bag, and eating on my bike rather than stopping.

Should I just suck it up and buy a bunch of GU packets ($1 per 100 calories)? Is there a less expensive way to get enough calories in a tiny pouch?

You're asking two different questions: what to eat, and how to make it accessible.

Nutrition-wise, science food will not make you faster, especially for long rides where you need to replace more than just sugar. Listen to your body and your cravings will tell you what you need to eat. If I'm packing, it's usually some sort of burritos as they're self-contained and can have whatever flavor profile and nutrient content you want. Two for 100 miles is more than sufficient for me, but riding 10000 miles a year will make you pretty efficient.

Pringle cans fit awesome in bottle cages, as do Anheuser-Busch's 25oz cans of Bud Heavy, Lime-a-Rita, etc.

I would highly recommend riding 'til you bonk (run out of stored glycogen / carbohydrate) at least once just to see what it's like and what your limit is.

If your food won't fit in your pockets, get a handlebar bag (http://www.jandd.com/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=FBB) or small frame bag (http://www.jandd.com/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=FFP)

If you're inclined towards GU, you might want to consider just picking up one of those squeeze bottles of honey. I have marathoner/triathlete friends who do that. Or if you feel silly drinking from a bear's head, just bring candy.

If you're doing honey, add a small part of molasses as well

(http://new2.fjcdn.com/comments/I+also+need+to+watch+this+movie+again+_c2856ca022f1ae5bc1fba3eb073d1354.jpg)
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: ohyonghao on April 21, 2015, 12:12:16 PM
I participated in my very first cycling race yesterday.  It was intense.  At the start line after a brief warmup to 158 bpm, my heart rate got down to 108, but as the time got closer I saw my heart rate creeping up to 112, then 118, and finally I was at 120 while just standing there when the whistle blew and we were off.  The race started with the sound of cleats clicking in and gears being shifted.  I made it through all 5 laps of the 1.9mi course, but that final lap I was looking at my HR and seeing 183 and thinking, "My max is usually 185-189, I don't have any more beats to sprint the end."  The final sprint comes up and I somehow get up to 195!  It was an amazing feeling.

A funny thing while riding the closed course, it's fairly close to the wetlands, and it has grassy fields in the middle.  On our 3rd lap we came by a line of ducks just waddling across as 50 cyclists come speeding by.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: GreenPen on April 21, 2015, 12:25:32 PM
Thanks, everybody for the advice on food and how to carry it. Sounds like I need to get a second place to put food (e.g., a handlebar bag), so I can give myself more options than the small seat pouch will afford.

I participated in my very first cycling race yesterday.  It was intense.  At the start line after a brief warmup to 158 bpm, my heart rate got down to 108, but as the time got closer I saw my heart rate creeping up to 112, then 118, and finally I was at 120 while just standing there when the whistle blew and we were off.  The race started with the sound of cleats clicking in and gears being shifted.  I made it through all 5 laps of the 1.9mi course, but that final lap I was looking at my HR and seeing 183 and thinking, "My max is usually 185-189, I don't have any more beats to sprint the end."  The final sprint comes up and I somehow get up to 195!  It was an amazing feeling.

A funny thing while riding the closed course, it's fairly close to the wetlands, and it has grassy fields in the middle.  On our 3rd lap we came by a line of ducks just waddling across as 50 cyclists come speeding by.

Smokes! That's a fast heart rate. Must have been a crazy sprint!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: ohyonghao on April 21, 2015, 02:16:36 PM
Thanks, everybody for the advice on food and how to carry it. Sounds like I need to get a second place to put food (e.g., a handlebar bag), so I can give myself more options than the small seat pouch will afford.

I participated in my very first cycling race yesterday.  It was intense.  At the start line after a brief warmup to 158 bpm, my heart rate got down to 108, but as the time got closer I saw my heart rate creeping up to 112, then 118, and finally I was at 120 while just standing there when the whistle blew and we were off.  The race started with the sound of cleats clicking in and gears being shifted.  I made it through all 5 laps of the 1.9mi course, but that final lap I was looking at my HR and seeing 183 and thinking, "My max is usually 185-189, I don't have any more beats to sprint the end."  The final sprint comes up and I somehow get up to 195!  It was an amazing feeling.

A funny thing while riding the closed course, it's fairly close to the wetlands, and it has grassy fields in the middle.  On our 3rd lap we came by a line of ducks just waddling across as 50 cyclists come speeding by.

Smokes! That's a fast heart rate. Must have been a crazy sprint!


I didn't even get out of my saddle for it, but I peaked at 32.7mph!

As for the food, I guess I should mention that I have a jersey with three pockets on the back.  Left pocket is for phone/spare battery, right pocket carries current food/energy, and middle carries cleat covers, wallet, and spare food.  Only supplies are in my saddle bag.  Then again, I also had two pit stops planned on the way, so YMMV.  Last Sunday we went out at 2pm when it was 80F and I found myself going through water twice as fast, about 750cc/12.5mi instead of every 25mi.  With two people it makes it easier to stop at a 7-11 or some other convenience store as one can stay out and watch the bikes (it was only a 35mi ride).
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Nancy on April 23, 2015, 11:42:52 AM
Every time I update my page on the spreadsheet I feel like I'm bringing the average down ;) I suppose at least I get mustachian cred for having a very short commute. Y'all will just have to up your goals to keep me from ruining the curve!

You are awesome. You're adding to our number of cyclists and total miles ridden. All good.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Longwaytogo on April 23, 2015, 08:14:17 PM
Been trying to convince my friends to join me Mountain biking since I quit golfing with them in 2013. Have not had much luck; but ones going out with me tomm after work and then grilling out at my place with some beers.

Hopefully it goes well; be nice to have an occasional riding buddy!!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Thegoblinchief on April 26, 2015, 09:09:44 PM
Anyone have advice on salt/electrolyte replacement? What works, what doesn't, most cost effective.

Century is one of my goals for 2015. Currently up to a bit over 40 miles. Food seems okay - do need to carry more than I have been - but definitely having issues with muscle soreness. Not outright cramping, but I wonder if adding some salt will help - especially as it's commonly recommended.

Saltstick caps on Amazon are widely liked, but $20/100 caps seems steep. Or maybe not?
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Russ on April 26, 2015, 11:10:23 PM
Potato chips
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: b4u2 on April 27, 2015, 05:36:28 AM
6 a.m. 36 degrees and I didn't die! #winning

After a decent camping weekend and gaining 6 pounds I figured I better add in some extra cardio this week and ride to work again. It should be much warmer by 4pm.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: mskyle on April 27, 2015, 07:27:24 AM
Went to four different bike shops this weekend but only spent $15 (pretty new brass bell), and I had my heaviest riding week in a long time - around 80 miles, all of it transportation cycling, 2/3 on my Trek7.3fx and 1/3 on my 50-lb Pashley Princess. Good times!
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Cheryl on April 27, 2015, 08:57:38 AM
First time doing this, I guess I'm confused by how it works.  How do I actually log miles?
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: mskyle on April 27, 2015, 09:13:38 AM
First time doing this, I guess I'm confused by how it works.  How do I actually log miles?

The main spreadsheet has a bunch of sub-sheets (look for tabs at the bottom) with everyone's names on them. Look for the tab with your name - the rest should be pretty clear.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: ohyonghao on April 27, 2015, 11:07:31 AM
Didn't get as many miles yesterday as I had hoped.  I had to go to work for a few hours Sunday morning, which did get me 6.2mi commuting.  Saturday afternoon before going to a wedding reception I squeezed my road bike rear tire out of habit and noticed it was squishy.  Also the new chain I had put on was still skipping in the small ring.

After getting back from work I immediately went to work on fixing the road bike.  After removing two more links and checking if it shifts into gears I noticed that I can't shift into the largest cog while in the big ring, too much tension.  So I painstakingly remove the chain again, put another link in and try it again.  This time I notice something funny about my rear derailleur, there are grooves in the tab by the jockey wheel.  I suddenly realize with horror what the sound I heard yesterday on my 23mi ride.  Having been the first time I've replaced a chain on this style of derailleur I didn't realize that I had strung the chain on the wrong side of the tab.  It had rubbed approximately 337,000 links.  After adding one link back from the two I removed the tension was still too high, but better.  Realizing now that the reason it was skipping may have been due to the chain being strung wrong I put the last link back in and now everything shifts well.

I took the bike out for a short ride, thought about my options and decided on a road that was pretty close and had a good 6-8% grade on it.  Got over to the uphill spot, braked to a really low speed, then shifted into the small ring and put as much power into it as I could, no skipping.  Got up a ways and found a spot to turn around, and since this was a bowl shaped hill I got to try it again, with this section being steeper I was in the small ring, largest cog, and everything was fine, to my relief.

I'm pretty sure that the damage to the tab won't affect anything, since generally speaking the tab shouldn't be touched anyway and the damage is on the wrong side of it.  As for the chain, well, time will tell I guess.  Each link hit about 3,300 times, and I did remove and add back on two links which have the special factory set pins, and I removed the pin on the same link at least 4 times.  This is a lesson that only needs to be learned once though, and I learned it.  Sharing with everyone else so you don't make the same mistake.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: b4u2 on April 27, 2015, 11:52:37 AM
Didn't get as many miles yesterday as I had hoped.  I had to go to work for a few hours Sunday morning, which did get me 6.2mi commuting.  Saturday afternoon before going to a wedding reception I squeezed my road bike rear tire out of habit and noticed it was squishy.  Also the new chain I had put on was still skipping in the small ring.

After getting back from work I immediately went to work on fixing the road bike.  After removing two more links and checking if it shifts into gears I noticed that I can't shift into the largest cog while in the big ring, too much tension.  So I painstakingly remove the chain again, put another link in and try it again.  This time I notice something funny about my rear derailleur, there are grooves in the tab by the jockey wheel.  I suddenly realize with horror what the sound I heard yesterday on my 23mi ride.  Having been the first time I've replaced a chain on this style of derailleur I didn't realize that I had strung the chain on the wrong side of the tab.  It had rubbed approximately 337,000 links.  After adding one link back from the two I removed the tension was still too high, but better.  Realizing now that the reason it was skipping may have been due to the chain being strung wrong I put the last link back in and now everything shifts well.

I took the bike out for a short ride, thought about my options and decided on a road that was pretty close and had a good 6-8% grade on it.  Got over to the uphill spot, braked to a really low speed, then shifted into the small ring and put as much power into it as I could, no skipping.  Got up a ways and found a spot to turn around, and since this was a bowl shaped hill I got to try it again, with this section being steeper I was in the small ring, largest cog, and everything was fine, to my relief.

I'm pretty sure that the damage to the tab won't affect anything, since generally speaking the tab shouldn't be touched anyway and the damage is on the wrong side of it.  As for the chain, well, time will tell I guess.  Each link hit about 3,300 times, and I did remove and add back on two links which have the special factory set pins, and I removed the pin on the same link at least 4 times.  This is a lesson that only needs to be learned once though, and I learned it.  Sharing with everyone else so you don't make the same mistake.

So if my chain "skips" it may be too long? Mine and my wife's bike tend to jump gears and random. Mainly when in low gear high pressure. Like going up hill in lowest gear and like standing pedaling. idk the right terminology but the skipping is annoying.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: mskyle on April 27, 2015, 01:38:52 PM
So if my chain "skips" it may be too long? Mine and my wife's bike tend to jump gears and random. Mainly when in low gear high pressure. Like going up hill in lowest gear and like standing pedaling. idk the right terminology but the skipping is annoying.

Could be your chain is stretched out or your cassette is worn (or both - a worn chain will wear on the cassette). If your chain is stretched out removing a link won't help, because it's the actual space between the links that's the problem. Or it could be bad shifting hygiene - shifting while pedaling for example. Chains and cassettes are pretty cheap to replace though, so it's no big deal. Your local bike shop will have a tool for measuring how stretched out the chain is, or you can use a ruler, like this (http://cyclingtips.com.au/2009/03/how-to-check-for-chain-wear/).
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: ohyonghao on April 28, 2015, 12:00:09 PM
So if my chain "skips" it may be too long? Mine and my wife's bike tend to jump gears and random. Mainly when in low gear high pressure. Like going up hill in lowest gear and like standing pedaling. idk the right terminology but the skipping is annoying.

Could be your chain is stretched out or your cassette is worn (or both - a worn chain will wear on the cassette). If your chain is stretched out removing a link won't help, because it's the actual space between the links that's the problem. Or it could be bad shifting hygiene - shifting while pedaling for example. Chains and cassettes are pretty cheap to replace though, so it's no big deal. Your local bike shop will have a tool for measuring how stretched out the chain is, or you can use a ruler, like this (http://cyclingtips.com.au/2009/03/how-to-check-for-chain-wear/).

When changing the chain usually I should measure the previous chain length to see how long it is, generally my chains have been 2-5 links too long.  One problem when changing a worn chain is that due to the stretching of the links (really the wear of the pins, the metal doesn't actually stretch) they settle on the cassette at different points than a new chain will, and this may cause skipping under pressure.  My mountain bike had that problem when I put the chain on without measuring it against the previous chain, so I removed 1 link and road it again, still had some trouble, so I removed 1 more link and now I don't have it skip.  But that was with a new chain, you should never remove links from old chains to try and compensate for wear.

Another method to test is by pulling the chain from the front when it is on the largest ring.  A brand new chain will not even want to leave the chain ring, slightly worn may move up to half way up the teeth, worn and it may be pretty close to the top or even past the teeth.  The ruler method will be more accurate, but for a quick check this can be good.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Maya on April 29, 2015, 12:07:25 PM
Dipping mum lean no here. Just got a new bike and have started carting the kids around. Currently at about 85 km. figured I've saved 8.50$ so far. Really loving the bike and bike trailer. Next challenge for me will be doing the Costco run with the trailer. Trying to make sure I leave the car behind on days I don't work. My goal is to get my speed and biking fitness up to try biking to work. It's 30 k one way. I hope to be able to do it in about 1h15. Currently it takes me 1h05 on the train and costs me $3.50 each way, so a bit of savings and badassity credit if I can make it. 
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jordanread on April 30, 2015, 07:09:31 AM
I'm back with a broken jaw. No riding until my balance comes back (possibly due to the painkillers, but I'm going to try to go ahead and abstain today - I'll have more comments in my Journal), but I'll keep up on the sheet. If there are any questions I missed while skimming through the new replies, post them here.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: PindyStache on April 30, 2015, 08:44:13 PM
I'm back with a broken jaw. No riding until my balance comes back (possibly due to the painkillers, but I'm going to try to go ahead and abstain today - I'll have more comments in my Journal), but I'll keep up on the sheet. If there are any questions I missed while skimming through the new replies, post them here.

Yikes! sorry to hear sir. Best wishes for a speedy recovery.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: b4u2 on May 01, 2015, 05:36:00 AM
No rush Jordan. Take your time and heal up and read a lot.

I almost got hit on my bike last night. People can't share the road, especially in construction zone. One curve is being worked on for a new sidewalk and the road narrows. People in vehicles don't seem to understand that they have to share the road. It's only for about a 100 feet so slow down and let me in.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Thegoblinchief on May 01, 2015, 07:30:25 AM
My philosophy when riding on city streets is to assume everyone is a deranged 16 year old that doesn't see me or is actively looking to ride me off the road.  I'd look to find an alternate route than that road for the time being.  It's safer that way.


No rush Jordan. Take your time and heal up and read a lot.

I almost got hit on my bike last night. People can't share the road, especially in construction zone. One curve is being worked on for a new sidewalk and the road narrows. People in vehicles don't seem to understand that they have to share the road. It's only for about a 100 feet so slow down and let me in.

Or you take the lane WELL ahead of the narrowing.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: mskyle on May 01, 2015, 08:12:24 AM

Or you take the lane WELL ahead of the narrowing.

Yeah, and don't be shy about *really* taking up the whole lane - so that it is actually impossible for people to pass you (if you need to to be safe). Just be careful when you go back to the side of the road - some assholes will pass you very fast.

Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jordanread on May 02, 2015, 03:32:43 PM
Of course I then messed up the day, and didn't realize we were on a new month. The new sheet is available at the link below, and welcome to the 9 new members.

May Cycling Challenge 2015 Forum Post (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/throw-down-the-gauntlet/may-cycling-challenge-2015/)

Thanks for all the well wishes guys, but the injury was caused doing that super stupid and dangerous thing...driving...or so I've heard.

Edited to fix link.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: Thegoblinchief on May 02, 2015, 04:24:28 PM
Jordan, you mis-formed the URL above. Just an FYI.
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: ohyonghao on May 02, 2015, 09:34:13 PM
May Cycling Challenge 2015 Forum Post (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/throw-down-the-gauntlet/may-cycling-challenge-2015/) For those who need a little help fixing the link.  FYI It's because you put quotations around the link (I did the same thing when trying to fix it, but figured if I'm fixing it I should make sure it works :-D).
Title: Re: April Cycling Challenge 2015
Post by: jordanread on May 02, 2015, 11:04:16 PM
Fixed up thread, but here is the corrected link:

May Cycling Challenge 2015 Forum Post (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/throw-down-the-gauntlet/may-cycling-challenge-2015/)

Mad props to TGC and ohyonghao for catching my mistake.