Friday, January 29, 2010

Death of a winter beater & gastrointestinal disorder

My purple winter beater died. Died it did. Done up and died. It's gone to the glue factory.
To be honest, I'm not commuting to work this winter due to the nature of the job and sketchy long hours - getting off at 3:30 in the morning, or having to do five extra hours of overtime and riding home is not my cup of tea.
Whimp you say. Whimp I am.
I'm waiting for warmer temperatures for sure.

Back to the topic at hand . . . the death of a winter beater. Inevitable isn't it? Salt, road grime, freezing temperatures, thawing, warming and repeating. Harsh. Winter deaths come early to machines made of steel.

In my grief, and my day off (the snow sucked to go skiing, so inward bound I was today), I started a new commuter project of left-over parts and my old road bike. The result:

Taa -daa

I dropped the drop bars for some comfy mtn bike bars. And they aren't all narrow hipster style either. I make my own fashion statements thank you. Notice the purple bell resurrection.

notice the custom decal job?
"no gas" . . . petrol or gastrointestinal you ask ?
"go" on the top tube
all together now: "go no gas"
I was limited to what I could spell with the decals that I had.

ghetto single speed conversion - an old worn out derailleur makes a great chain tensioner

incomplete without a little death and destruction

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Still Fat & Special Needs Cycling Shoes

Noth'in on but my socks - lucky you.
Left & Right
I figure that I actually probably weigh 195 lbs as I my socks, I reckon, weigh about 3 lbs each.
Makes sense to me.

Two things:

First - I'm not as fat as I was a month or so ago. I'm down to an unrespectable 201 lbs. Down from 207lbs. And if my finger math serves me correct . . . that's . . . 1-2-3-4-5-6 . . . . 6lbs lost.
I don't think that I can hit my ideal riding weight from couple years ago of 186lbs. Too difficult and probably not safe to get down another 15 lbs over the next two and a half months or so.

Let's say another 10 weeks of do-able weight loss time left before the season kicks off when it will be a little unrealistic to try and lose weight. It's healthy and safe and reasonable and realistic to lose a pound a week. So I am looking at, if my finger math again serves me correctly . . . 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10 . . . . another 10lbs. Which would put be at about 191lbs.
Meh. Close enough.

Second - all of my socks are labeled with a "L" (for 'left' - dummy) and "R" (for 'right' - dummy).
Dat be true.

I've been told that I am a 'special kind of guy' who has some 'special needs', and I wouldn't argue that for one minute. So with the connections that I have in the cycling community I've been able to pull some strings and work in conjunction with a major cycling shoe company to develop a custom pair of cycling dwags for me for this upcoming season.

I am awesome.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


Had some the day off last week (before the weather turned to crap) so we took advantage of the glorious weather and took The Peanut downtown for a stroll on the canal.

Rideau Canal Skateway - no longer the 'world's longest' skating rink, but now the 'world's largest'.
Pffffft, Winnipeg.

The Peanuts first time on the canal.

(Look closely)

Getting outside on the canal does have it's benefits: fitness, socializing, family time, fun in the sun . . . . and . . .

. . . . bacon.
The two go hand in hand - Rideau Canal & bacon.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Crippity Crap

The temperature was ALL right for a ride outside (in January) yesterday,
but the weather was ALL wrong.
Something about getting hypothermia, in January, miles from home, on a bike, with no one to come and get you just doesn't sound like fun or the smartest thing to do.

January in Ottawa and it's raining? WTF?
My day off to boot.
'Twas hoping to get out for a long ski today.
What was I to do?

. . . drink some more coffee?

. . . play with Mrs. Pibbs?

. . . vacuum the house?

. . . clean the bathroom?

. . . take the compost out to the bin?

. . . do some laundry?

. . . clean Pibb's litter box?

. . . fix my watch strap?

. . . tidy up some tubes in the workshop?

. . . trim up some sideburns? . . . admire my double chin?

. . . file some important documents?

. . . download some tunes?

I guess all I was looking for was anything to avoid getting on the hamster wheel, which was my inevitable last stop. Just didn't feel like getting on it. But, I did . . . eventually.

Monday, January 25, 2010

sitting & spinning

Last week I sat at The Imperial and watched this . . . .

Most excellent. I've seen clips and photos of cycling from this time era, but this is my first experience taking it all in. One word would describe it, 'chaos'. Organized chaos - from the start of the race, team cars following, crowds, race organization, logistics, finishing the race. Pretty freaky. Well worth the watch.

Later in the week I spun on this and watched this barking orders at us.
My first spin class of the year. Not necessarily a dreaded necessity. I've been riding lots at home by myself, but went for a change of pace. However, riding in a group seems to be mentally easier.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Trans-Sylvannia thinking

Don't know if you noticed or not or even care for that matter, but I cleared away a lot of crap from my side bar (I actually did it awhile ago - thanks for noticing you sorry bunch of sods). Past races and results. Who wants to read about the races I did and did not do and the sub-par-middle-of-the-pack-hack placings? Time to update it.

The past year has been nutty. For most of the last quarter of the year I didn't know if I was coming or going and couldn't plan for anything. Unfortunately, riding had to take a back seat. Things are starting to level off and I'm beginning to find a routine in the chaos of changing careers, being a good husband and father and finding some time to ride. Which leads me to scheduling my ride season, more specifically what events I will be attending. And since my blogging of late has been equal to my past race performances I will be stringing out my proposed race schedule over the next wee bit (like anyone cares) - just to keep you coming back for more.

Ever since returning home from the BC Bike Race in '08 I've been salivating to do another stage race. Due to work and $$ restraints, BC is kind of out of the equation (for this year anyway . . . . but perhaps next year?). However, about this time last year if I recall correctly, rumors and grumblings began about an epic seven day stage race closer to home.

Trans-Sylvania? WTF? That's not closer to home.
Read the fine print dummy.

A trans Atlantic flight to eastern-Europe?

. . . castles and Vampires?

More like Amish, farm country, the Penguins and Steelers.

Pennsylvania is waaaaaay closer to home, which means less costly traveling expenses (no flight, no shipping bike box, miscellaneous travelling expenses, etc.) - I can drive to Penn. in about 8-9 hrs. The registration, accommodation and food costs are much less than BC too - making if even more enticing to go. Apparently there will an abundance of fine Pennsylvanian dairy products every day to bung riders up. Not to mention some wicked riding to be had, which I experienced a taste of at the Wilderness 101 this past August. So, how can I not go?
Clicky clicky for registration info.

Rumors that the Empire will be also be in attendance.

Gwad I hope that I can go . . . I'm dying to see a vampire.

Right now I'm 95.7684% sure that I am going. What stands in the way is funds.
If I can sell this:

Contact me for more details. E-mail linky under my profile ---------->

. . . then I might stand a chance of being able to afford to go while still staying in 'the wife's' good books and not having to stand on the corner selling my body for sex or medical experiments (more likely the latter of the two).

Monday, January 18, 2010

Sumo weekend update

Sumo weekend update.

Saturday - Powertapping
Was going to go skiing, but I figured that the snow sucked. And I was too lazy.
Apparently the snow was quite good. So was being lazy.

One hour workout. First 15 or so warming up. Every 5 minutes thereafter - 1 minute of tempo, followed by 30 seconds of Lactate Threshold, then back into Endurance zone work until the next five minute mark.

More numbers for Peter (he likes numbers and graphs and power twitting or tweeting).
Power to the people. My power to the people?
Will leave them weak and slow.
Go find your own power . . . . people.

Still more.
Notice I wasn't about to do one second (okay, I actually did one second more than an hour) more than an hour. I've been building up my saddle time. Goodie for me you say. Goodie for me I say.
However good for me, I am still way behind where I've been in fitness terms from previous years. Way behind. That's why my bee-hind is so big.

Two hour skate ski with the Vegan Vagabond (see below).

My second skate ski this season.
Starting from P10 meant climbing . . . and climbing . . . and climbing.

All that climbing also meant stopping.
I stop whenever I see a stop sign. Arret! Arret!
Okay sign, you're the boss.
Stop I will.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Two Events

I am missing two events next weekend . . . . but that doesn't mean you have too.

Clicky, clicky to make big for details OR better yet, click on over to the Tall Tree Blog for more info. Or do both. Or don't. Or shut up.

And number two, a Bicycles for Humanity charity indoor spin (clicky clicky for more details).

Thursday, January 14, 2010

If women don't find you handsome . . . .

In the wisdom of Red Green, "If women don't find you handsome, they can at least find you handy." Unfortunately in my case, neither hold true - handsome'ness and handy'ness are two things I am lacking in.

Case in point - our dishwasher died. How hard can it be to replace it with a new one? According to everything I read on-line, all the Youtube videos I watched, the installation manual that came with the new one - not hard at all. An hour at tops to take the old one out and put the new one in.

Pffffffttttt. Apparently I should have been looking for the dishwasher installment video for the "special needs" handyman. Fuugg me. It took me a hell of a lot longer than an hour. I think that I could possibly measure the amount of time it took me to install the fuggging thing in days.

Long story short . . . . one trip to Canadian Tire and two trips to Home Depot and I had everything I would need to spend and evening and an entire morning putting it in. Waaa waaaa.

My only reprieve from the hair pulling experience (hence the hat - no hair left) was spending time in the box the new washer came in . Boxes are fun.

Taaa daaaa.

A half re-tard, inebriated monkey could have done the job quicker.

I did get out for a nice long ski, Tuesday evening with the Vegan Vagabond to work out all my dishwasher, lack-of-handyman'ness frustrations.

I kept seeing VV looking back at me the entire ski . . . . "Would you hurry the f*ck up!" (she never actually said that - but man, doesn't it look like she's saying that!?).

My longest ski of the year (and only third one of the season!) and all three point five hours of it on the parkway. Parkway classic skiing is boring as watching paint dry, but not so when you're with good company. Great to catch up with the VV. Did you know she's skiing the CSM this year?
Also, did you know that she's a pro XC ski pole vaulter!?!?! True.