Thursday, July 07, 2005

Conshohocken, 6:30 p.m., The Cyclasm

Took the day off from the radio show tonight so I could just kick back and chill... and get a nice long ride in. This was my first serious ride with the new shoes and i was anxious to see how it all shook out. (An aside: this morning I wore the aforementioned shoes riding in to work and, when I stopped at 3rd and Chestnut, didn't manage to get my feet out of the pedals and whoomp, flopped over onto the pavement. ugh).

The weather had cooled off and dried out a bit, so it was a great night for a ride. The big revelation: the shoe/pedal combo, with their superior power transfer, made going up those big hills on the ride out to the Conch much, much faster. I'm usually struggling at around 10 mph at the top of the biggest of these monsters. Today i was clicking along at 14 as i crested it.

Top speed was just 39.5, but i also got up to 30 or so on a more-or-less flat sprint riding back through Schuylkill River Park. It'd been a while since I'd been able to air it out like that; been a while since I'd had a ride that felt this damn good

Stats: 31.41 miles, 1:49:46, avg speed 17.1 mph, top speed 39.5 mph, non-commute miles year-to-date 956.43

Song of the day: Jay-Z/DJ Danger Mouse, "99 Problems"/"Helter Skelter" mashup
Slurpee of the day: Fanta Pina Colada

Monday, July 04, 2005

Falls Bridge, 2 p.m., New pair of shoes

Feeling decidedly unsuper physically (must have been the Live 8 galavanting), but particularly super about the new pair of Diadora Geko shoes i'd bought the evening prior, I set out for a quick ride before heading to Jesse's BBQ.

It was a particularly uneventful ride, save for the shoes. My bike came equipped with clipless pedals -- the kind you click into and out of when you stop and start (or, if you don't have the whole process down, the kind you don't click out of and keel right over in). Since it's tantamount that you find a pair of shoes that fit you just right, i'd swapped out the clipless pedals for my old pedals until such a pair of shoes could be found. Well, at Bike Line in Manayunk, i found the aforementioned Gekos on clearance and they fit like gloves... for feet... or something.

The ride was short and, as it was brutally hot out, not particularly invigorating, but there's something about being locked into the pedals that's magic... like you're actually part of the machine. While struggling to get back into my pedal after a stop sign, a guy decked out in race gear rides up next to me and says "Just like Lance the other day," referring to Armstrong's pedal problems in the tour's opening time trial.

The deets: 14.58 miles, 52:02, avg 16.812 mph, top speed 23.50 mph, non-commute miles year-to-date 925.02.

Song of the day: DNTEL, "Don't Get Your Hopes Up"

Friday, July 01, 2005

Green Lane and then some, 7 p.m., Here comes Live8

Hopped on the Trek in hopes of squeezing a quick ride in before this town burns to the ground. Looking to break the recent pattern of long rides on the weekends and no rides during the week, I headed out toward Green Lane. In hopes of getting the ride up over the 20 mile mark (the Green Lane loop is about 19), but with no interest in hitting the big hills that come with taking a right at the end of Main Street, I hung a left and took a quick little detour into an industrial park that houses, much to my surprise, a Jefferson-Smurfitt facility (I'm fairly sure my dad worked for J-S at one point in his box-making career).

The detour was short and uneventful, so I turned around and rode back, this time taking Martin Luther King Drive. The footpath was littered with people carrying folding chairs and ground mats. I guess there was some sort of pre-Live8, pre-July 4 fireworks thing going on that night. Most of these people don't understand what "On your left" or "On your right" means. I came up on a family walking four-across on the path and kept saying "On your right," "On your right," but to little avail. The son was wearing earbuds and didn't hear me at all; once he finally saw me he moved out of the way only to have his mom step into the spot he'd just occupied. "I'm on my right" she explained to her other son, who explained to her that it meant "He's on your right." "Oh," she said. Sigh. I expect Philly to be full of people doing this sort of stuff all weekend. Looks like it'll be a bad weekend to ride.

Made it back, with a short detour to pick up a camera in Fairmount, completely sweaty and ready for a cold shower and some much needed sleep. I'm concerned that my average speeds seem to be dropping this month; either it's the heat, fatigue, or just getting stuck behind people who don't know how to walk on a recreation path: 20.77 miles, 1:16:41, avg 16.309 mph, top speed 25.5 mph, non-commute miles year to date 910.44

Song of the day: Solvent, "My Radio."

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