Rain

I’m a bit behind on the blog. But, I’ve been riding a bunch.

Somehow, I think I ended up with a little bit of a cold last week – not quite the swine flu, but, man, I felt like dogmeat. I swam one day at lunch, but only made about 1000 yards ’cause it’s hard to rotary breathe and cough at the same time.

Transcendence hit, though – Wednesday night I did a short mountain bike ride – house to Pequot Woods to River Road and back. Thursday was hill repeats on the road bike at lunch. Saturday was blown off.

Sunday, though. Drilled, but was determined to get the ride in. I stopped by Arcadia State park, figuring I need hills before MooseMan in June. And hills I got.

I spent two hours going up hill and down dale in the mizzle (more than a mist but less than a drizzle), cold spray heading up my back. I finally get the idea of overshoes – my feet were frozen until about 90 minutes after I got done with the ride.

But, man, was I sad I had to finish the ride. It was the first time in a long time I’d really, really loved riding again. The bike is a beautiful thing.

One last thing: I’ve been rocking (rubbing/running/palping – please read BikeSnobNYC if you’re not) a ForeRunner 305 for a while with the speed/cadence sensor. And, unlike Lance, I’m a grinder, not a spinner. Turns out my average cadence is about 80, not 100. On hills, it even drops to about 70 or 65.

So, I’m not quite sure what to do about it. I suppose I’ve got to work on it, but I feel like a pansy when I’m in the granny gear. Thoughts?

5 thoughts on “Rain

  1. I reread the second to last paragraph over and over again and I still cannot tell what the hell you are talking about!

    But I hope you fix it. Uh, whatever it is.

  2. now i feel really bad because i never get past the granny gear.
    as long as you have fun.

  3. I certainly can’t hold 90. I generally go around 80, and it drops into the 70s on hills. I’m happy to drop gears, though I hate going to the granny up front as I’ve had some derailing problems in the past. Hills are not a good place to get off and fix your chain….

  4. Granny gear helps you be Lance fast when the elevation changes to your advantage. Or so I would think.

  5. Most cyclists can’t carry on a 100rpm spin on a bike. Cadence is what you make of it, and differs for different people. For someone like me, who has long legs, spinning a 100rpm cadence isn’t as efficient over long distances as spinning at 83-90 rpm. For a person with shorter legs, a faster cadence is more efficient than trying to grind along at 70-85rpm. And then there’s the dominance of fast-twitch to slow-twitch muscles: folks with the former can spin faster for longer, while folks with the latter are better off grinding.

    Look at riders like Miguel Indurain – no slouch in his day – as an example: a tall guy with long legs, he spun around 80-84 rpm most of the time, dropping down into the high-70s on long uphills. Yet he was an efficient climber, if not a mountain goat. On the other hand, Marco Pantani was a hand (at least) shorter than Indurain, and kept up a 90-96 rpm spin most of the time (then again, he’d sprint up long hills, standing while in the drops). They were both great all-around stage racers, yet did things that suited their individual situations.

    And these guys are all elite cyclists – not the hobbyist/enthusiast set like us.

    So don’t stress about dropping down into the 65-75rpm range when grinding up some of the more severe climbs. It happens, and if you can make it and still have fuel left in the tank, you’re doing well.

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