Author Topic: March Cycling Challenge 2015  (Read 20272 times)

jordanread

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March Cycling Challenge 2015
« on: March 01, 2015, 12:50:43 PM »
The cycling challenge for March 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.

You can access the sheet at this link.

The historical data on your individual sheets will update from the February 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, PM, or just comment on this thread.

Happy Cycling!!

jordanread

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2015, 12:53:55 PM »
I am going to be making a few changes to the spreadsheet again this month, for use next month (historical data is moving into it's own sheet. The pure amount of data is really slowing it down). If there are any additional suggestions, comments, or concerns, just post them in here. The changes that I am making are behind the scenes, so you shouldn't notice anything until April. Happy Cycling everyone.

Wolf_Stache

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #2 on: March 01, 2015, 01:11:14 PM »
Thanks for doing this Jordan!

Also I've gotta step up my game. Feb miles were awful between moving and then being horribly sick.

johnny847

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #3 on: March 01, 2015, 01:16:22 PM »
Whoo! First person to log miles for the month! Haha. Though it's a meager 2.1 miles.

Also I've gotta step up my game.
Me too. I didn't even hit 100 miles last month =/

jordanread

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #4 on: March 01, 2015, 01:32:51 PM »
Yeah, I also need to up my mileage, although now I don't have a place to go. No more commute for me, so I have to figure something out. I've thought about at least getting a couple of miles per day during the week if I use my lunch break to go play some Ingress. Also, even though time is going to be a touch tighter than usual, I might try to do the grocery runs too. Still haven't gotten a trailer, but such is life. Also, in January, I completely failed at something:

I am still here!

did not meet my January challenge but am ready for February.  Once again my goal is time not miles since I am on a stationary bike.  Perhaps I could use a fitbit or phone app to gauge miles?

Wintersun, I apologize for not getting this question answered earlier. I usually un-notify the cycling thread once the new one is up, and I didn't see this until today. If you can clock your average speed, and the amount of time it takes, I can modify your sheet to log 'distance' based on that calculation. A fitbit wouldn't do it, since everyone's metabolism is different, but do you have a speedometer on the stationary bike?

Thegoblinchief

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #5 on: March 01, 2015, 06:37:50 PM »
Most stationary bikes have mileage, unless it's a super old school resistance model.

I rode today too. It was still quite cold, but bright sun in March is a helluva lot warmer than bright sun in January. Starting to hear a lot more birdsong, so here's hoping warmer weather is coming soonish.

ohyonghao

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #6 on: March 02, 2015, 12:02:30 AM »
Ended up being sick today, so no miles on the bike. Also I have a 5k to run on the 15th, so I'll probably have poor numbers that weekend.  But perhaps I might try doing some 70+mi rides.

jordanread

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #7 on: March 02, 2015, 08:10:30 AM »
I'll probably end up cycling significantly less due to a new work project. :(
I'll have to do all my cycling during the weekend now. :D

I seem to have messed up somewhere, I no longer have a tab in the spreadsheet.
Just fill out the form again, it won't hurt anything. If you didn't log miles, it doesn't bring you forward.

jordanread

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #8 on: March 02, 2015, 10:04:12 AM »
I'll probably end up cycling significantly less due to a new work project. :(
I'll have to do all my cycling during the weekend now. :D

I seem to have messed up somewhere, I no longer have a tab in the spreadsheet.
Just fill out the form again, it won't hurt anything. If you didn't log miles, it doesn't bring you forward.
Tried that twice and I did log miles in February.

Yeah, I see you had to enter it twice, plus you should have been imported. I see your sheet on there now, with the imported history. That shouldn't happen again. Sorry about that.

MidwestBiker

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #9 on: March 02, 2015, 10:30:52 AM »
Quote from: MplsIceBiker in Feb Challenge
Challenging myself to ride 800 miles in February. Started off right by riding 30 miles on Feb 1.
Was I high when I typed that? Oh well, March is a new month. Thanks for keeping this going Jordan! Pretty awesome to see people planning for 70+ mile days. I think I'll focus on maximizing my days biking to work this month. Commuted 13 out of 17 last month. Some very cold days in there too. Looking forward to more biking and warmer days.

b4u2

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #10 on: March 02, 2015, 11:26:39 AM »
Still not riding but I like to follow the threads so here I am.

njfleck

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #11 on: March 02, 2015, 02:48:58 PM »
I'm jumping in for March! I will fill out the form when I get home from work. Sold my car a few months ago, so have been solely bike commuting so far this year. Still have access to my gf's car when I want, but hopefully this challenge will keep me motivated to avoid the temptation.

Nancy

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #12 on: March 03, 2015, 07:30:50 AM »
Today was such a beautiful ride. Most of the snow piles were gone from the streets, leaving wide open bike lanes. The sun was shining, birds were chirping, lights were green, and traffic was light. I was bursting with my desire to talk to the other humans (pedestrians and two other cyclists I saw) about how beautiful the day was, but I was a good New Englander and kept it to myself...until now :)

b4u2

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #13 on: March 03, 2015, 08:59:27 AM »
Nice. We had snow and ice so far today. Wouldn't even think about riding in this weather anyway. Iowa weather is all over the place, mostly super cold.

johnny847

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #14 on: March 03, 2015, 09:00:44 PM »
My odometer only worked intermittently today. There was a light drizzle today -  there's a slight chance that had something to do with it, but I have my doubts. So today's mileage is pulled from Google maps.

It was my first time biking in the rain. Though it hardly counted as rain. I was surprised though by how much dirt and other nonsense spewed up and stuck to my panniers.

njfleck

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #15 on: March 04, 2015, 09:02:21 AM »
Maybe I am missing something obvious, but I filled out the form a few days back and my name hasn't shown up on the sheet yet.

jordanread

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #16 on: March 04, 2015, 09:27:09 AM »
Maybe I am missing something obvious, but I filled out the form a few days back and my name hasn't shown up on the sheet yet.
I'll check it as soon as I get home. You can also try again. If it's not there within a minute, it won't show up.

njfleck

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #17 on: March 04, 2015, 12:32:20 PM »
Maybe I am missing something obvious, but I filled out the form a few days back and my name hasn't shown up on the sheet yet.
I'll check it as soon as I get home. You can also try again. If it's not there within a minute, it won't show up.

Thanks! I'll give it another try.

jopiquant

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #18 on: March 04, 2015, 12:48:24 PM »
Okay I'm in for the first time. Starting slow and steady - commute in once or more per week. (Right now I bus to the train, my cycle time is 15-20 minutes longer)

jordanread

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #19 on: March 04, 2015, 03:04:02 PM »
I'm a damn idiot. I apologize. Apparently this month I screwed up and didn't install the form trigger. I apologize. If you don't have a sheet, and you have tried, try one last time. I'll get you taken care of. I am so sorry, this was just dumb ass ness on my part.

njfleck

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #20 on: March 04, 2015, 05:04:25 PM »
I'm a damn idiot. I apologize. Apparently this month I screwed up and didn't install the form trigger. I apologize. If you don't have a sheet, and you have tried, try one last time. I'll get you taken care of. I am so sorry, this was just dumb ass ness on my part.

Thanks for getting me added!

johnny847

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #21 on: March 04, 2015, 08:47:24 PM »
I'm a damn idiot. I apologize. Apparently this month I screwed up and didn't install the form trigger. I apologize. If you don't have a sheet, and you have tried, try one last time. I'll get you taken care of. I am so sorry, this was just dumb ass ness on my part.

No apologies needed jordanread! I'm not saying that because I was auto added since I've done these challenges before, but because you are awesome for running them! It definitely encourages me to get out there more.

ohyonghao

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #22 on: March 05, 2015, 02:11:25 PM »
Really looking forward to this weekend.  My wife forgot to purchase an item for her sister while we were shopping at a place 35mi from our house.  Because I think it would be ludicrous to drive a car there and back to buy a $50 item, costing $39.20 in wear and tear on the car, I have volunteered to ride there :-D  I was planning on a 70mi trip this weekend anyway, now I get to put this 70mi under "Car Replacement Miles" instead of "Recreational Miles" :-D.

PindyStache

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #23 on: March 05, 2015, 07:03:45 PM »
Really looking forward to this weekend.  My wife forgot to purchase an item for her sister while we were shopping at a place 35mi from our house.  Because I think it would be ludicrous to drive a car there and back to buy a $50 item, costing $39.20 in wear and tear on the car, I have volunteered to ride there :-D  I was planning on a 70mi trip this weekend anyway, now I get to put this 70mi under "Car Replacement Miles" instead of "Recreational Miles" :-D.

Awesome and badass adventure!

johnny847

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #24 on: March 05, 2015, 09:30:25 PM »
Really looking forward to this weekend.  My wife forgot to purchase an item for her sister while we were shopping at a place 35mi from our house.  Because I think it would be ludicrous to drive a car there and back to buy a $50 item, costing $39.20 in wear and tear on the car, I have volunteered to ride there :-D  I was planning on a 70mi trip this weekend anyway, now I get to put this 70mi under "Car Replacement Miles" instead of "Recreational Miles" :-D.

Awesome and badass adventure!
+1 that is sweet.

TrMama

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #25 on: March 06, 2015, 11:34:39 AM »
I am totally loving that I don't need to use my 5 blinky lights or reflective vest anymore. Hello sunshine!

MidwestBiker

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #26 on: March 06, 2015, 12:19:42 PM »
After starting off March with below-zero and near-zero temps with wind, today it's up to 32. Great biking weather!

ohyonghao

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #27 on: March 06, 2015, 01:56:33 PM »
I am totally loving that I don't need to use my 5 blinky lights or reflective vest anymore. Hello sunshine!

I'm loving the forecast of 68F temps for my long ride tomorrow.  The hardest part is starting out at 40F and partly cloudy, but I have some good layering material, shouldn't be an issue.

ohyonghao

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #28 on: March 07, 2015, 05:23:24 PM »
Mission accomplished.  Also met a really nice guy who helped refill my water bottle, because today that required 4 750ml bottles and I only refilled one at my turn around point and was running on fumes.  Pace picked up a lot after drinking half of it.

jordanread

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #29 on: March 07, 2015, 07:17:31 PM »
Mission accomplished.  Also met a really nice guy who helped refill my water bottle, because today that required 4 750ml bottles and I only refilled one at my turn around point and was running on fumes.  Pace picked up a lot after drinking half of it.

That is freaking sweet!! Glad you had a good ride. Water makes such a huge difference. Melalvai called people like that Trail Angels. Fitting term I think.

 

Thegoblinchief

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #30 on: March 07, 2015, 07:32:14 PM »
Nice! I was thinking of you today when we took a walk in the balmy 45F weather we're having here. Not quite to biking weather as a family yet, but soon!

Wolf_Stache

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #31 on: March 07, 2015, 11:01:56 PM »
Glad you took advantage of the weather today! I'm still feeling kinda crappy (see my journal for my ER experience yesterday/last night), so I only did 5 miles today.

Mrs. PoP

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #32 on: March 08, 2015, 01:18:22 AM »
Hey Jordan - just wanted to say thanks for the pannier recommendation a month ago!  Finally got around to getting them and having Mr PoP mount them and I really like them!  I went with the slightly smaller version (http://www.amazon.com/Avenir-Excursion-Small-Panniers-Inches/dp/B00165Q4RG) of the ones you have and they fit everything just perfectly.  My 13" laptop (I bring it in once every couple weeks) fits in easily in its padded sleeve with clothes on one side, and plenty of room for lunch, etc on the other side. 
I think the fenders still count as the #1 most useful upgrade to the bike since starting commuting, but these might be a close second. 

jordanread

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #33 on: March 08, 2015, 08:16:25 PM »
Hey Jordan - just wanted to say thanks for the pannier recommendation a month ago!  Finally got around to getting them and having Mr PoP mount them and I really like them!  I went with the slightly smaller version (http://www.amazon.com/Avenir-Excursion-Small-Panniers-Inches/dp/B00165Q4RG) of the ones you have and they fit everything just perfectly.  My 13" laptop (I bring it in once every couple weeks) fits in easily in its padded sleeve with clothes on one side, and plenty of room for lunch, etc on the other side. 
I think the fenders still count as the #1 most useful upgrade to the bike since starting commuting, but these might be a close second.
Outstanding! I'm glad they are working for you. They completely changed my riding habit.

mskyle

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #34 on: March 09, 2015, 07:47:44 AM »
I was sick all last week and had a bunch of difficult-to-access-by-bike events to attend (I'm wary of riding to/from unfamiliar places at night with the amount of potholes and snowbanks we're still dealing with around here), so it was a pretty crap week for cycling for me - a whopping 1.4 miles!

But I rode in to work today, and it was right around freezing, and spring feels like it's coming, and pretty soon I'm going to have to start watching out for that bike cop who tickets cyclists who ride through the pedestrian light! Woohoo!

Vaguely related: there has been a Surly fat bike in the bike room at work for around a month - ever since the second big snowstorm. It has not been moved once! And it blocks access to half the bike room for everyone else (ok, for me and my one coworker who winter bikes)! And WTF man! It's a snow bike! Why are you leaving it at work when there's 4+ feet of snow on the ground!

(I know, I know, I'm lucky to have a bike room to complain about.)

ohyonghao

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #35 on: March 09, 2015, 05:31:54 PM »
So, I did attempt to make my own sports drink.  It was an interesting experiment, and I believe I have learned a lot from it, here is an entry from my journal:

Quote from: The Scientific Annals of Oh Yong Hao
2015/03/08 - Taste testing
Taste testing of the first formula at room temperature (67F) resulted in a concoction that would not be very desirable.  After refrigerating to 40F the mix was more palatable, but still lacked any desire for consumption.  Diluting this formula with 50% more water, doubling the volume of the sample poured, resulted in a much more palatable drink, though still a little salty.  My first thought was I should double the sugar, then realized that by diluting it 50% and doubling the sugar we come full circle to Gatorade.

So now I see that there is a reason for why Gatorade, and other sports drinks, have half the recommended salts and twice the sugar, it is to make it more palatable.  With that I do not see any problem with those drinks while exercising, but that should make it more apparent why we shouldn't be drinking these during the sedentary parts of our day.

Now, one variables which may change this could be flavoring.  I used apple juice, not from concentrate, as my sugar, measuring the grams of sugar and salt already available, and added a lite salt mix, roughly 50/50 table salt and potassium salt, then added water to get the 1L which the recipe called for.  I've thought of maybe adding some lemon to it to help the flavoring, and myself personally loves sour drinks, so this may not require any additional sugar to counteract the citrus.

A friend suggested getting the powdered Gatorade to carry in small packets that could be useful during refills on long rides.  Another item to think about is length of ride and weather.  Previously I had found that 20-50 miles I drank only 0.5L, but that was during the winter, now with spring giving us 70F days going through 3L and still running out on 75 miles is possible.

PindyStache

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #36 on: March 09, 2015, 09:28:43 PM »
Vaguely related: there has been a Surly fat bike in the bike room at work for around a month - ever since the second big snowstorm. It has not been moved once! And it blocks access to half the bike room for everyone else (ok, for me and my one coworker who winter bikes)! And WTF man! It's a snow bike! Why are you leaving it at work when there's 4+ feet of snow on the ground!

(I know, I know, I'm lucky to have a bike room to complain about.)

The obvious conclusion is that fat bikes are ridden by people driven by irrational cycling patterns. I saw someone riding a fat bike here yesterday. It's been above freezing for several days and pretty much all the snow is gone except for a few places in the shade (and the bike trails, which is where I saw this person riding, are wonderfully cleared all winter long). I don't have a particular problem but do wonder what that such a person thinks when they pull that bike out.

Nancy

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #37 on: March 10, 2015, 08:10:39 AM »
Flix, beautiful pic! Thanks for sharing!

It's also warming up here. It was in the 30s today, so I didn't have to wear my face mask and long john top. The fair weather cyclists are back out, and I'm happy they are because the more people that ride, the more visible we are to drivers and the stronger our case for better infrastructure. Good times!

crazy jane

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #38 on: March 11, 2015, 07:09:10 AM »
Jumping in a bit late for my first few rides this month. Thank you Jordanread for all you do for this thread!!!!!

Thegoblinchief

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #39 on: March 11, 2015, 07:27:35 AM »
Flix, beautiful pic! Thanks for sharing!

It's also warming up here. It was in the 30s today, so I didn't have to wear my face mask and long john top. The fair weather cyclists are back out, and I'm happy they are because the more people that ride, the more visible we are to drivers and the stronger our case for better infrastructure. Good times!

Yeah, I've seen a few more riders out as well. Still running my daytime lights for extra visibility but probably not necessary in another few weeks if the warmth keeps up.

mskyle

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #40 on: March 11, 2015, 07:29:41 AM »
Realized my rear tire was completely flat about halfway home from work yesterday (likely due to not keeping my tires properly inflated, more fool me) and pulled over to figure out what to do next - there are three more bike shops on the way home (in two miles!) and one a little ways back from where I was, but it was after 6 and some of them close early in the winter...

Then I realized I was standing right next to a bike repair station (I was on/adjacent to a college campus) so I decided to pump up the tire and hope for the best (i.e. that it would get me home, or at least to the next open bike shop). I stopped a couple of times to check on it and it was definitely on the squishy side but I made it! And then I figured if I was taking a tire off I might as well switch out my cross tires for my slicks, because it's SPRING, dammit!

(Definitely a lot more riders on the road this week around here.)

johnny847

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #41 on: March 11, 2015, 07:41:10 AM »
Realized my rear tire was completely flat about halfway home from work yesterday (likely due to not keeping my tires properly inflated, more fool me) and pulled over to figure out what to do next - there are three more bike shops on the way home (in two miles!) and one a little ways back from where I was, but it was after 6 and some of them close early in the winter...

Then I realized I was standing right next to a bike repair station (I was on/adjacent to a college campus) so I decided to pump up the tire and hope for the best (i.e. that it would get me home, or at least to the next open bike shop). I stopped a couple of times to check on it and it was definitely on the squishy side but I made it! And then I figured if I was taking a tire off I might as well switch out my cross tires for my slicks, because it's SPRING, dammit!

(Definitely a lot more riders on the road this week around here.)

While this seems to have been caused by you not keeping your tires properly inflated, you may get a flat at any time. This is why I recommend carrying around spare tubes, a bike pump, and tire levers at all times. A nice small saddle bag can carry all this. 

Thegoblinchief

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #42 on: March 11, 2015, 08:11:26 AM »
While this seems to have been caused by you not keeping your tires properly inflated, you may get a flat at any time. This is why I recommend carrying around spare tubes, a bike pump, and tire levers at all times. A nice small saddle bag can carry all this.

+1. I've gotten plenty of flats, both puncture and snake-bites. I usually care a spare tube instead of a patch kit, then patch the tube at home, testing it enough to make me confident that it can serve as the new spare.

jordanread

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #43 on: March 11, 2015, 08:51:08 AM »
Realized my rear tire was completely flat about halfway home from work yesterday (likely due to not keeping my tires properly inflated, more fool me) and pulled over to figure out what to do next - there are three more bike shops on the way home (in two miles!) and one a little ways back from where I was, but it was after 6 and some of them close early in the winter...

Then I realized I was standing right next to a bike repair station (I was on/adjacent to a college campus) so I decided to pump up the tire and hope for the best (i.e. that it would get me home, or at least to the next open bike shop). I stopped a couple of times to check on it and it was definitely on the squishy side but I made it! And then I figured if I was taking a tire off I might as well switch out my cross tires for my slicks, because it's SPRING, dammit!

(Definitely a lot more riders on the road this week around here.)

While this seems to have been caused by you not keeping your tires properly inflated, you may get a flat at any time. This is why I recommend carrying around spare tubes, a bike pump, and tire levers at all times. A nice small saddle bag can carry all this.

Yeah, I have all of that stuff in one of the pockets of my trunk bag. And definitely spare tubes. I am not confident enough in my ability (lack of practice) in patching on the fly. But with the armadillo tires I have, I haven't gotten a flat in the past year.


So good news on my side. My dual platform pedals arrive today, which will make my new routine that much easier. Since I no longer have a commute, I've decided to step up my ingress play. There are quite a few portals around my house, so I'll have lot's of 3 - 4 mile trips throughout the day. The SPDs are great for riding long distances, but the hassle of putting different shoes on just for a 20 minute ride, where I have to stop and walk sometimes made it difficult to justify heading out. So my miles should be increasing.

Kmp2

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #44 on: March 11, 2015, 09:14:49 AM »
Back in the dark in the mornings after the daylight savings time switch this weekend, but the sun is high on the way home :)

I am not ready to take off my studs yet - that just seems to be asking for another cold spell, but we are having amazing weather.
There were 4 bikes in the rack at work this morning, double the winter number so far.

mskyle

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #45 on: March 11, 2015, 10:05:35 AM »
While this seems to have been caused by you not keeping your tires properly inflated, you may get a flat at any time. This is why I recommend carrying around spare tubes, a bike pump, and tire levers at all times. A nice small saddle bag can carry all this.

For my commute at least I've made a calculated decision that in case of flats (or other problems) I prefer to either walk the bike home/to work/to the nearest bike shop, or to lock it up to the nearest bike rack/parking meter until I have time and tools to deal with it (and take public transport or and Uber/taxi to where I need to go). My commute is less than four miles, so I'm never more than two miles from home or work, and I'm usually within a quarter mile of a bike shop. Plus I have the option of taking the bike on the bus or subway if necessary (e.g. if it's later and the bike shops are closed). I hate changing my tires, period, never mind on the side of the road or in a snowbank.

On the rare occasions when I go for non-urban rides I do carry tools, etc.

johnny847

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #46 on: March 11, 2015, 10:08:54 AM »
So good news on my side. My dual platform pedals arrive today, which will make my new routine that much easier. Since I no longer have a commute, I've decided to step up my ingress play. There are quite a few portals around my house, so I'll have lot's of 3 - 4 mile trips throughout the day. The SPDs are great for riding long distances, but the hassle of putting different shoes on just for a 20 minute ride, where I have to stop and walk sometimes made it difficult to justify heading out. So my miles should be increasing.

I love my dual platforms! Though I don't ever wear shoes in the house, so I never really have to switch shoes. Still though, they're handy when I'm going to be walking around a lot after cycling wherever I need to go and I don't want to scuff up the cleats on my shoes.


For my commute at least I've made a calculated decision that in case of flats (or other problems) I prefer to either walk the bike home/to work/to the nearest bike shop, or to lock it up to the nearest bike rack/parking meter until I have time and tools to deal with it (and take public transport or and Uber/taxi to where I need to go). My commute is less than four miles, so I'm never more than two miles from home or work, and I'm usually within a quarter mile of a bike shop. Plus I have the option of taking the bike on the bus or subway if necessary (e.g. if it's later and the bike shops are closed). I hate changing my tires, period, never mind on the side of the road or in a snowbank.

On the rare occasions when I go for non-urban rides I do carry tools, etc.

Wait but you clearly have the capability to carry your tools for non urban rides. Is it just difficult for you to do this or something?

ohyonghao

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #47 on: March 11, 2015, 12:27:39 PM »
While this seems to have been caused by you not keeping your tires properly inflated, you may get a flat at any time. This is why I recommend carrying around spare tubes, a bike pump, and tire levers at all times. A nice small saddle bag can carry all this.

+1. I've gotten plenty of flats, both puncture and snake-bites. I usually care a spare tube instead of a patch kit, then patch the tube at home, testing it enough to make me confident that it can serve as the new spare.

After my recent bought with lots of flats in November/December I learned how to properly patch a tire.  Last time I had a flat it was probably quicker, and much less hassle, to patch on the go rather than change for a new tube, but it would depend on the situation.  At work I keep a pump for in case I get I have a flat when I get off work.  My kit includes CO2 cartridges, which changes how I diagnose the flat.

What I found with the pump is I could pump the tire back up, and listen for where the leak is and pinpoint it.  Next I removed just the portion of the tire to work on, found the offending piece of glass and removed it, then matched up where the hole in the inner tube would be and patched it.  This was all done without removing the wheel from the bike.  This might be harder to do with skinny road tires, but on my wider mountain bike tires there is more than enough room to work with.

A good practice I have gotten into when mounting tires is to place the PSI reading above the valve, this allows for easier diagnosis of the punctured inner tube if you do swap for a new one as you can know where the puncture would be relative to the valve.  If you didn't find the cause of puncture you risk puncturing your new inner tube, but hopefully you've made it home before it becomes a problem.

I think it is like a lot of repair skills, at first it can be scary, daunting, and often times frustrating, but with practice and repetition it becomes a very easy task.

mskyle

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #48 on: March 11, 2015, 12:46:25 PM »
It's not that it's difficult to carry the tools (I carry groceries, I carry books and computers for work, I carry all kinds of stuff!) or even to change the flat, it's just that I will only change a flat by the side of the road as an absolute last resort (my personal preference), and during my commute I generally have about five options I like better.  Part of this is that I'm generally cycling in my regular clothes - like last night when I got the flat I was wearing a dress and tights; I'd much rather walk the bike even a mile or two than sit /kneel on the ground in a dress and tights.

Basically, the presence or absence of bike repair paraphenalia is not the limiting factor; my willingness to fix the bike mid-commute is, and I am very, very lazy.

johnny847

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Re: March Cycling Challenge 2015
« Reply #49 on: March 11, 2015, 01:01:05 PM »
I think it is like a lot of repair skills, at first it can be scary, daunting, and often times frustrating, but with practice and repetition it becomes a very easy task.

Agreed. I was pretty scared of getting flats, but after getting two on the same ride, I've gotten a lot better at fixing them and don't fear them anymore.

It's not that it's difficult to carry the tools (I carry groceries, I carry books and computers for work, I carry all kinds of stuff!) or even to change the flat, it's just that I will only change a flat by the side of the road as an absolute last resort (my personal preference), and during my commute I generally have about five options I like better.  Part of this is that I'm generally cycling in my regular clothes - like last night when I got the flat I was wearing a dress and tights; I'd much rather walk the bike even a mile or two than sit /kneel on the ground in a dress and tights.

Basically, the presence or absence of bike repair paraphenalia is not the limiting factor; my willingness to fix the bike mid-commute is, and I am very, very lazy.
Ah that makes more sense. I kinda forgot about the whole normal clothes thing - I rarely bike in non cycling clothes. I get funny looks sometimes when I get to my destination but I just ignore them. And I don't need to bike to work since I can walk to it in 7 minutes.