Where The Bike Takes Me

Continuing this journey of cycling in efforts to get into shape, lose weight, enjoy the outdoors, and save my knees from their arthritic state at 28 years of age.

Things to Help Pass the Time on a Stationery Bike January 29, 2008

Filed under: cycling — f8th637 @ 10:00 pm
Tags: , , ,

I realized that I never posted about what helps me pass the time while riding on the trainer. First and foremost, I have to have good music. For this I turn to DJ Steve Boyett and his popular Podrunner podcast. As of February 1st, he is going to start releasing a Podrunner Intervals workout which I’m really excited about. The music really reminds me a lot like the kind you hear at a lot of Spinning classes and really gets me moving.

I also recently bought a book holder bought at my local Performance Bike to fasten on the bike so that I can catch up on my latest Bicycling magazine (or Marie Claire). It is actually hard to read with the book/magazine on the holder itself but it is good for putting it down when you really want to crank.

My favorite of all these though is probably the full-length episodes of 30 Rock that you can stream from nbc.com. They have minimal commercials and 2 episodes is a nice 40+ minute workout. Plus they have me cracking up which makes my workout seem a lot more enjoyable.

So these are just a few of the secrets I have for getting some time and miles in on the bike. I hope you have your routine down or that maybe I’ve given you some good ideas for you to check out. Happy riding!

ETA: Oh also, I had to postpone my appointment with Jill at Proteus Bicycles till the following Tuesday because of work.  It turns out this probably worked out in our favor because the guy that was suppose to open for her today didn’t show up nor did she hear from him so she was a bit worried.  I hope wherever he was he was ok.  I hate when work gets in your way, don’t you?


Bike Fit Appointment Made! January 27, 2008

Filed under: cycling — f8th637 @ 11:44 am

I have decided to bite the bullet and pay for a professional bike fitting.  I seem to have problems with overall knee stiffness once I hop off the bike regardless of how easily I’ve been pedaling.  40 minutes on the trainer renders me fairly useless until my knees stop swelling (which is what I’m assuming they are doing when they get stiff.)  I suspect that my knees are stiff because my cleats are not in the right position since I am knock-kneed.  I have also always been kinda wary of clipless pedals and my ability to get out of them when I need to because I am knock-kneed.  I’ve thought about getting some Speedplay Frogs but again that’s another added expense.

So I inquired on some of the message boards I frequent and got some recommendations on people who do a good job of bike fitting.  People also mentioned looking into Speedplay Frogs and showed me these pedal extenders called KneeSavers.   After a great e-mail from Andrea here in the area I decided to give Jill at Proteus Bicycles a call.  She came highly recommended from many people who responded to my request.  So I’m meeting with her on Tuesday. They are closed Mondays and she does fittings from 11 PM to 4 PM during the week only by appointment.  After that you can come in for minor adjustments anytime.  She said to set aside 1.5 hours and to bring all my cycling gear and that I will also be spending some time riding the bike in the lot towards the end.  I definitely consider this time to be an investment.  I’ll update after Tuesday on how it goes but I’m really looking forward to it.


Mile 22.0 “on” the TransAmerica Trail January 15, 2008

Filed under: virtual cycling — f8th637 @ 7:55 pm
Trail Photo at Current Distance
22.0 mi – “7.00 mi to Chickahominy River, VA”, James City County
“Section: 12 Map Name: Yorktown, 150”



Cyclists, drivers clash on use of scenic Pungo roads January 12, 2008

Filed under: Cycling Elsewhere,Education — f8th637 @ 11:36 am

I grew up in the Hampton Roads area and my parents still live there.  My husband and I have been considering riding in Pungo the past few months.  My friend, Joel, sent me this article from the area.  I would really appreciate if educated and articulate cyclists would respond to the comments people have posted which seem to be mostly from irate drivers.

Here is the link: http://hamptonroads.com/2008/01/cyclists-drivers-clash-use-scenic-pungo-roads

Virginia Beach

Cyclists have fallen in love with Pungo and its scenic rural roads.

But the feeling isn’t necessarily mutual.

Pedalers and the residents who live in southern Virginia Beach have been at odds in recent years. Bicyclists complain that drivers have purposely brushed by them or tried to edge them off the road. Residents grouse that the bikers sometimes ride in packs, block traffic and litter.

Now, a mildly worded resolution that supports cyclists is drawing controversy. The resolution, backed by Councilwoman Rosemary Wilson, encourages city staff to consider cyclists when they design road repavement or maintenance projects.

Paving an additional 2 -foo t-wide stretch of city right-of-way for cyclists would cost $80,000 a mile, Wilson said.

“To me, it’s a common-sense safety idea,” Wilson said. “At least if it’s wider, it’s safer.”

Wilson had planned to introduce the resolution at last week’s City Council meeting. But it met objections from Councilwoman Barbara Henley, who lives in the Pungo area and represents the Princess Anne District.

The Beach’s Agricultural Advisory Commission will now review the resolution before the council considers it. The commission is scheduled to discuss the proposal on Monday.

“Are we really intending every roadway in the city to be a bike and trailway?” Henley asked. “I don’t know if that’s the right thing.”

The roads around Pungo are narrow and barely can accommodate the cars and trucks added by residential growth, Henley said.

The city shouldn’t encourage cycling on roads that aren’t safe, she added.

“We’ve got to have a reality check here,” Henley said. “If it’s a substandard road, and there are people who have no choice but to be on the roads, what do you do when people want to use the roads for recreation? It’s not ‘Do you like bikers or do you not like bikers?’ It’s a safety issue.”

For Chris Logan, a Kempsville resident, Pungo is the safest place in Virginia Beach to ride a bike because the roads aren’t clogged with cars and trucks.

“I’m not going to ride my bike down Indian River Road,” he said. “The law says I have as much right to be on the road as they do.”

Logan cycles through Pungo about three times a week and also participates in the organized rides put on by several local bike clubs and stores.

These rides have fueled some of the backlash from the community.

“It used to be cute 10 years ago to see a few bicyclists on a Sunday,” said Gene Hansen, president of the Back Bay-Pungo Civic League. “Now they’re out in the mornings and out midday.”

Many Pungo residents don’t let their children ride their bikes from one farm to another because the roads are too dangerous, and having the cyclists here adds to their concern, Hansen said.

The next civic league meeting, set for March, will be dedicated to the issue of sharing the road with cyclists, said Hansen, who supports the resolution.

Tom Coghill, president of the Tidewater Bicycle Association, said Wilson’s resolution would be the first step in making roads safer for bikers and drivers.

“It gives us a place to ride, and nobody will be nervous,” Coghill said.

Deirdre Fernandes, (757) 222-5121, deirdre.fernandes@pilotonline.com


Mile 14.8 “on” the TransAmerica Trail January 11, 2008

Filed under: virtual cycling — f8th637 @ 10:58 pm
Tags: ,

14.8 mi – “6.15 mi to Jamestown, VA”, James City County
“Section: 12 Map Name: Yorktown, 150”


My Latest Find January 8, 2008

Filed under: Fellow Cyclists — f8th637 @ 2:40 pm

Darn that Google for making suggestions of RSS feeds it thinks I would like based on my current subscriptions. It recommended the Fat Cyclist blog and I tuned in. So far, I’m hooked. This guy makes me laugh. Check it out!


New Year, New Rides January 5, 2008

Filed under: cycling — f8th637 @ 8:37 pm

I took up cycling almost a year ago. It will be a year ago come Spring. This year, I’m looking forward to tackling the rides that beat me like the Harlem Valley Rail Ride and enjoying completed rides like the 8 Lighthouse Ride (which I learned recently is going to be called the Maine Lighthouse Ride now.) Who knows what new places I’ll visit this year on the bike?

Among the new tools I’m using to get fitter and train this year is the virtual tour of the TransAmerica trail from Yorktown, VA to Portland, OR. You can bike, walk, and run your way across this 4247.5 mile trail and it will show you pictures of where you are. For instance, today I did 8 miles on my indoor trainer. This brings me 4.98 miles to Williamsburg, VA and here:

Pretty neat, huh? I think I’d actually like to do parts of it if not ride the whole thing. If you want to follow my progress just check me out here: http://exercise.lbl.gov/user/otherUserView.html?publicId=50486.

I’m currently reading “Smart Cycle” by Arnie Baker. It’s among a couple of cycling books I got for Christmas. I’m not looking to race or anything but I am looking for some sort of regimen to help me get in shape and to ensure that I complete the 55-miler this year in Millerton, NY. I definitely want to get faster also. Today on the trainer I averaged 11.1 mph. I can definitely do better. I also need to work on becoming stronger for hills. So those are two of my cycling goals this year. I really need to sit and think about what I want to accomplish. I’m glad that the last ride I did last year was a 47-miler. I remember my first official bike ride last year was 8 miles and I was so proud then. I definitely do have a lot to be proud of in fact!