Thursday, May 29, 2008

Amanda’s New Ride

It was sunny and warm yesterday afternoon and the kids wanted to play out in the pool which was nice because it afforded me the opportunity to do some work on Amanda’s new bike.

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

Me working. Kids playing.

I had been thinking of selling the Cannondale Cross bike, when Amanda alluded to an interest in racing cross and having a cross bike of her own. Obviously the Cannondale would be WAAAAAY to huge for her… BUT if I could find a smallish frame at a reasonable price I could simply swap all the parts off the Cannondale and presto: new cyclocross bike for Amanda!

Now it took some looking about but finally John at Bike Universe provided a solution in the form of a tiny 46cm Soma Double Cross!

After the kiddies were in bed I was able to finish up as much as I could (still waiting on some bar tape) and Amanda took it for a test spin around the yard just to try it out and work out a starting point for adjusting seat height, etc.

Look out Wendy Simms!

Gosh there’s enough obstacles in our yard we could almost set up a circuit…. No run-ups, though…

I considered trying to convince her to dismount and run through the kiddies pool – but she didn’t have her helmet on…

The smile kind of says it all, huh? Nothing like a new bike… especially a slick little ‘cross bike that actually fits. Bless those little frame companies that make stuff in smaller sizes…

We need to cut some single-track through those lilacs..

Later she showed me her appreciation for all the hard work I put into the project….


Am I going to get a kick in the junk for posting that one…?!

Monday, May 26, 2008

“Training” Diary

Well since all the cool kids are doing it I thought maybe I’d include an online “training” diary on my blog.

What the heck am I “training” for…?! I don’t know. I had this silly idea that I might try and race cyclocross again in the fall… maybe try out the 8 hour enduro… I’d totally like to try out 24-hour racing sometime, but probably not this year.

The main reason for all this is just to not be such a fat bastard. I’ve been spending a bit too much time on the other passion over the last couple years and my health and fitness have suffered. My folks brought over a scale for Amanda to weigh her bags when she was flying to Windsor a month ago and I went and stood on it – just to see. I knew I was getting a bit big but the little number 2-1-6 staring back at me was a bit of an eye-opener (I was wearing clothes… and had change in my pocket… lots and lots of change…).

That’s probably the heaviest I’ve ever been and while I’m not exactly a whale, and I can still haul two kids in a trailer up the Broadway Bridge on a 35x18 single speed…. It was too much and enough for me to realize enough was enough and something had to be done.

So all the “training’ I’m doing isn’t really to get seriously, competitively “race-fit” – it’s really just to get fit and healthy (both physically and mentally). I might show up at some races and ride around for fun and stuff…. Hopefully I’ll be fit enough by fall to not embarrass myself TOO much!


Date: Monday, 19 May 08
Time: Afternoon
Distance: 35km
Average Speed:
Wind: North 20kph
Notes: Rode out to the Berry Barn with Amanda and Susan. First distance ride out on the road in maybe two years and the start of some “serious” “training”. See Victoria Day Ride post.

Date: Tuesday, 20 May 08
No “Training” Ride – took Keira to gymnastics and then took the “long route” home via the Circle Drive bridge and then to Broadway for groceries…. ~20km

Date: Wednesday, 21 May 08 ~5:15-6:45
Time: 1:32:52
Distance: 35.81km
Average Speed: 23.12Kph
Temp: 11°C
Wind: SE 35kph gusting to 48kph
Conditions: Cool and overcast, threatening rain
Notes: Tired and in a foul mood – ride sorted me out.

Took kids to J.S. Wood Library for story time ~8Km

Date: Thursday, 22 May 08 5AM
Time: ~1:15 on trainer
Notes: My right knee was aching a bit and it was cold and very windy out – same as yesterday – only colder. So I did an indoor ride on the trainer in the easiest resistance setting just to spin for a bit but not put too much stress on the knee.

Started watching “The Flying Scotsman” while riding – very inspirational I’m sure it made me spin faster – especially during any scene while he was riding. More on that later.

Date: Friday, 23 May 08
No “Training” Ride – knee still feeling sore…?!

Took the kids to the zoo. ~20km – blew a spoke on the way home.

Date: Saturday, 24 May 08 ~6-7:30
Time: 1:28:46
Distance: 35.05km
Average Speed: 23.69km
Temp: 12°C - 16°C
Wind: ESE 1kph
Conditions: Mainly Sunny
Notes: Slept in a bit – had planned on being up at 5 and doing the 50Km loop – but stayed up the night before and watched all of “The Flying Scottsman’ with Amanda. Tired. Knee still a bit sore, but not while riding.

I saw a Red Fox while out on my ride and heard lots of meadowlarks.

Did some stretching afterwards and broke out the exercise ball Amanda bought a couple years ago.

20 Ball Crunches
20 Back Extensions on Ball
10 Leg Raises

I am a sad fat fucker with no core strength….

Made a couple of trips to Bike Universe on Broadway and back – Amanda’s new ‘cross frame is in. Forgot to bring head set to press in at shop – rode home and couldn’t get it out nor the bottom bracket so I hauled the whole frame over there (having left the trailer locked up on Broadway) on my shoulder. I’ll finish building it up over the next week. ~10km.

Date: Sunday, 25 May 08
Time: 1:05 on trainer
Notes: Got up at 5AM, it was raining and I was too damn tired and sore to do anything. Went back to bed.

Knee is still feeling sore and I should probably take a rest for a couple of days – but I’m worried about loosing momentum and not being able to get myself out riding again if I stop… What to do…

Thought about going out for a ride while Amanda and kids were at swimming but it’s cold and rainy and the wind is NE 41kph – which would mean a nasty head wind coming home – In light of sore knee I decided to stick to the trainer as I could stop anytime I want and not find myself 17km from home with a fucked knee and a 41kph headwind to ride home into…

Watched part of “The Flying Scotsman” again while riding.

25 Ball Crunches
25 Back Extensions on Ball
15 Leg Raises
20 Push-ups

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

lookit that fat bastard go! I'm not really as huge as I look there... It's a baggy shirt!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Is It Any Wonder…

...that I turned out the way I did…

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

That’s my Mom, my sister and me (in the front basket) this would have been taken in High River, Alberta – I would have been about four or five…? In the background it the grounds to the old hospital across the street from where we lived. I think the bike was a CCM. My dad also had a matching green men’s version.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Victoria Day Ride

I finally got out on the road for a little ride this holiday Monday. Amanda, Susan and I rode out to the Berry Barn and back. It was a nice ride; Sunny, not too hot…. until the turnaround… The entire trip back we rode into a nasty headwind. I’m okay – hauling two kids around in a chariot everywhere I’m used to a little “resistance” – Amanda’s feeling a little wrecked. It was also the first time out on the Zebra in… oh… two years or so…?

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

Sunny skies and a tail wind.

Amanda on “the Zebra”.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Finnegan Rides!

Well he must have been having a good time the other day because he was ASKING to go for a ride again today – in a very enthusiastic manner!

After out trip to the Library I picked up the aforementioned “run-bike” (in pink…. The only one available…). Amanda has already put the Giant Trike on Kijiji…

Unfortunately when we got home Keira wanted nothing to do with it. When I tried taking the two of them out she wouldn’t even get on it. If I sat her on it she would throw it away and stomp out into the street!! Well that just wasn’t working for me – 17th is a pretty busy street – and so I had to drag two screaming kids back into the house.

Later, after supper when Amanda was home, I got to go out with just Finnegan. We had a nice little ride around the neighborhood to the park and back. Here’s a couple pics

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

Is that boy loving it or what?!

He's not so much down with the braking - but considering he rides about as fast as I can crawl it's not so much an issue.

So many things to learn all at once - I marvel that he picks it up so quickly - steer bike with hands, pedal forwards to go, pedal backwards to stop, smile for dad so he can take another silly picture...

Now if only I could get the girl so excited about HER new bike...

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

The Kids’ Bikes

I took the kiddies out for a little spin on their respective HPVs yesterday afternoon. Both were quite excited – though Keira was ready to leap out of her skin, she was so stoked!

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

a VERY excited Keira. Unfortunately the trike just isn’t working out. I saw a “run-bike” at one of the local shops a couple weeks ago and I think that might be the solution. I wish we had gotten one for Finnegan. If anyone out there is in the market for a barely used VERY well made tricycle….

At least one of my kids is thoroughly enthusiastic about cycling. Look out Alex Wrubleski! (No pressure Keira!)

Finnegan feigning enthusiasm – he’s been less excited about going out riding, though once he got going he was having a lot of fun!

So many new things to learn.. “wait you want me to turn these pedal-thingies AND steer this beastie!”