...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the burn

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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby bob_summers » Sat Oct 05, 2013 2:42 pm

If I remember correctly, trees are coppiced from ground level, if they're done higher up, they're pollarded (stops animals from eating the shoots i suppose). Weird fact of the day :) Lots of early industry around there, so the area would have once been a huge charcoal burning operation, a hive of activity, and now is totally silent and impossible to tell what used to go on there. Most of the timber which built the Spanish Armada came from this area as well.

I missed the world champs entirely - with limited time to ride these days, riding has to take priority over watching! I did have a bit of a chuckle at team GB's pathetic showing, thinking they could control an entire 270km one day race from the first lap. Given the conditions I didn't really expect a Portuguese, Catalan and Murciano to fill the podium!

2/10
MTB Ulia
2h

Another stab at the elusive KOM from last week. Moved into 2nd spot but still a few seconds off. Not knowing the guy who's first, I don't knowif he's done it on a downhill bike - I'm ahead of him until the rocky chute, which I lose time on. Maybe he just hucks straight down them, while I'm trying to ride it. I'm obsessing FAR too much about this! It's also worth mentioning there are only four people on the leaderboard :oops: I did get PBs on the way up though.
Was getting dark on the way down, so not long til it's unwise to be riding up there in the evening (small matter of exposed 100m sheer cliffs).

4/10
Turbo
50m

No time...

5/10
Zumaia OnB
73km 2h30

Discovered a puncture on the road bike on the way out the door, so rather than lose time I hopped on the fixie. Haven't ridden more than an hour in one go on it for about 6 years, so was expecting a few of those moments when you forget you can't coast, but no problems. The frame rides so nicely it's almost a shame it's not geared, I'd like to put some more miles on it. There are only a couple of flattish routes from here, you can MTFU to a point, but it's just silly to give oneself bachache from pushing a 78" gear up a Basque mountain.
"No se deja de pedalear cuando se envejece.
Se envejece cuando se deja de pedalear"
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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby Alistar » Sun Oct 06, 2013 4:38 am

[quote="bob_summers"]If I remember correctly, trees are coppiced from ground level, if they're done higher up, they're pollarded

Oh right, am not familiar with the term pollarded. I've heard it before but had no real idea what it referred to, so probably nodded my head to appear knowledgeable, and moved on. :D

[quote="bob_summers"]I missed the world champs entirely - with limited time to ride these days, riding has to take priority over watching! I did have a bit of a chuckle at team GB's pathetic showing, thinking they could control an entire 270km one day race from the first lap. Given the conditions I didn't really expect a Portuguese, Catalan and Murciano to fill the podium!


Don't worry you can check out uci's youtube channel if you have the time. Have 8hrs worth! But at least you can fast forward. :wink: I must admit I only watched about the 2nd to 4th hr before having to go to bed and caught up the next day. Yeah totally miserable weather with the roads like ice rinks apparently. Yeah 270km is such a long way! Whoever wins deserves it! The 2 NZ boys whose job it was to look after Bennet crashed out early so weren't much help. Bennet dangling near the back of the peloton with the big names and good to see him sticking in there for as long as he could before unable to hack the pace. Reckons he got too cold. Scary to think someone as good on the climbs as he is (from personal observation) unable to even make it to the finish! Pity Valverde was so fixated with Nibali he didn't seem to notice Costa go until too late. Even with 5km to go I wasn't expecting Costa to win! Not really sure that Valverde is a particularly good team player :wink:
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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby bob_summers » Sun Oct 13, 2013 8:16 pm

Just noticed I've been on the bike every day since last Friday! But maybe quantity over quality...

Sun 6/10
Club Run
60km

Crappy weather, took the fixed again. Just two of us out, turned back in a downpour so only got 60k in.

Mon 7/10
Cruce de Arano
50km

??? Can't remember this, went on fixed again.


8-9-10/10
Commute 20km

Started this week, not really worth mentioning as it's just 10k out down the main road, then 10k back by which time it's dark so I take a quieter back road. About 20m out, 25m back.

Fri 11/10
Trainer, 1h15
Out of time again. Concentrated on cadence & form.


12/10
MTB Andatza
40km 2h45

Quite a lot of riding on the road. Beat my PB up the first climb, couldn't get right to the summit as it was all churned up by logging machinery. Great descent but a little too slippery after the rain.

13/10
MTB Lesaka etc
60km 4h45

Another nice day, hit the trails again. One of those up and down all day affairs getting slower and slower until you just want to be at home :? Hardly saw another person all the way round. Will have to go back for a proper look around, there were some great looking trails disappearing into the forest but couldn't risk getting lost & running out of daylight.
"No se deja de pedalear cuando se envejece.
Se envejece cuando se deja de pedalear"
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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby Alistar » Fri Oct 25, 2013 9:43 am

[quote="bob_summers"]Great descent but a little too slippery after the rain.


A 29er could have come in handy you reckon? :twisted:

But seriously, looks like you've been getting in some good Autumn mtb miles. :)
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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby bob_summers » Fri Oct 25, 2013 9:46 pm

I haven't tried 29" - must admit they look a bit wrong to me, but for a lot of the riding I do (around 4-5hrs with a lot of fireroad) they might be the bee's knees. There are some tighter techy trails I can imagine 29" to be a handful on, where I appreciate the short wheelbase (or just plain easiness to shoulder over walls or gates) of 26" - but I'm saying that without having ridden one. And I would imagine I'd be able to tell the difference between 26" and 650b...

A while without updates here. Life of the new parent - squeeze rides in when you can, then throw the unwashed bike in the spare room and straight out the door again. Next ride, find out that all your kit is still wet/dirty/mouldy from last time. Slow puncture still not fixed, nor the clicking pedal. Barely time to open the laptop!

Last week: Tue&Thu the work commute. A scant 40km all in.
Weds on the turbo 1h, too late to go out.
Fri, 1h30 to the cruce (fixed gear). Now there was a surprise. Was caught by a local elite rider, was getting dark so guess he'd been on a bigger ride. Held his wheel up a short ramp, 400m big ring type hill. I was still there at the top (just - haven't seen 180bpm for a while!) and since he obviously doesn't Strava, I got the KOM. On fixed 8) Lucky that the gear was just right for the hill (and to get a pull). He seemingly expected to have dropped me, as I gave him a bit of a shock as I took a turn further up the road.
Sat, up to Zumaia along the coast. 80km, flat. Fixed again, really getting back into it. Went down a tooth on the back to 48x17 but still rather limited as to rides I can do on it. Too steep for too long gives me lower back pain. There is reportedly a local fella who rides everywhere fixed (road and MTB), even does the Quebranta on one (200km x 4000m), but I'm sceptical. A ghost from the 1920s maybe!
Sun, last club ride of the season. Getaria, 55km. I took the fixed again, mate took his 50's three speed race bike. He's the only other English guy in the club, I think we're getting a reputation for not taking things seriously enough :wink: We stopped off for a couple of beers on the way back, watched a match of Jai Alai, apparently the world's fastest ball game http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yD6uS0xtWpM

This week
Mon Tues Thurs, commuting
Weds, Turbo 1h
Fri, Cruce 50km. No KOMs this time :wink: , felt tired.
"No se deja de pedalear cuando se envejece.
Se envejece cuando se deja de pedalear"
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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby Alistar » Sat Nov 02, 2013 11:07 am

Yeah as my friend says the best thing to do if you're not wanting to part with the coin anytime soon is "just make sure you don't have a ride on one". As your old 26er will just feel like poohs in comparison :D
[quote="bob_summers"]Life of the new parent - squeeze rides in when you can...Barely time to open the laptop!

Haha! Yeah I'd given up on the fitness/sport there for awhile in the early days. Sounds like you're doing pretty good considering! I'm impressed! :) My friend is hardly allowed to go on rides which I find really weird especially as he more than pulls his weight.:(
[quote="bob_summers"]There is reportedly a local fella who rides everywhere fixed (road and MTB), even does the Quebranta on one (200km x 4000m), but I'm sceptical. A ghost from the 1920s maybe!

Wow great going on the fixed(KOM's etc)! Maybe that guy rides an easier ratio for the Quebranta(you'd have to wouldn't you?), doesn't worry too much about the flats, and coasts downhill?
[Disclaimer: I know I've told this story before but like telling it as left a big impression on me. When I realised I'm not as good on hills as I thought I was :wink: ] I've been destroyed by a guy on a fixed Masi in a race before. Luckily for him no big hills but up Gebbies as I was feeling rather pleased with myself flying past everyone(got caught too far back before climb) attaining a respectible time , and the bastard powers past me up the 9% sprint to the top(after the 14% pitch which kills the legs) and left me for dead. I did notice his rather muscular legs (muscle+skin, no fat and veins sticking out). Felt good catching him up before the Wheatsheaf with him spinning out at 130rpms tho. Until he dropped our whole group when the hills came again(see my Lytt rides for profile) and that was that. :shock:

Wow that ball game looks like so much fun! Damn difficult to catch those balls I imagine!
You Brits breaking the code again eh Bob? :lol:
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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby bob_summers » Sun Nov 03, 2013 10:36 pm

Well like I say, this fixed wheel guy is shrouded in legend so not sure if he even exists until I see him with my own eyes (and I'm sure after 5 years here I'd have crossed paths with him once). Maybe he runs fixed/fixed flip flop with a bigger cog for the flat, I dunno. I was on a club ride last week on mine and hit close to my HRmax when trying to stay on during a descent! But on the right gradient (ie not often) I can climb maybe better than with gears, as once you've got on top of the gear you'll really push to stay there if the gradient climbs slightly, whereas with gears the temptation is to shift down one and stay seated.

So nothing to report this week, generally feeling slower and have put on an extra kilo or four, not so worried (yet!)

last Sun,
Last club ride of season (I know I said that last week but I got the date wrong).
Jaizkibel 55km
Ride was to the lighthouse at Hondarribia for a group photo, which is flattish so went fixed again. But there was goading, would I be daft enough to go over Jaizkibel? So I gave it a bash. Not my favourite side to climb from but first 3km are at 5% so not too hard on fixed. Actually dropped everyone by the time I got to Guadalupe, but needed water so stopped off and one guy went past. There's a brief descent, then the steeper 4km starts, 7.5%avg with some ugly ramps. I kept my clubmate in view for a while but then the fun started to wear off and my cadence was getting close to stopping and going into minus figures! Scraped over the top having lost my mate but still not caught by the others. Hah! Took a photo for proof and then suffered the descent.

Image

Tues/Thurs: Commuting
Weds: 1h10 on turbo.
Fri: Zumaia 80km
Fun ride, along the coast which was getting battered by the waves that made the news in Portugal last week http://www.theguardian.com/world/video/ ... e-portugal
Had one crash over the road just as I was passing so i got a soaking, but not as much as the walkers who got caught in it. Arrived home white with dried salt!

Sun: 4 hills (Igeldo x2 Urdaneta Garate)
70km 2h55
Hit me today how much form has gone, I felt I was climbing OK on Urdaneta but it was actually the slowest I've ever climbed it. Final climb of Igeldo was a disaster, I'd forgotten that it's now dark by 6pm and had no lights, so was climbing in the pitch dark (lucky it's hardly used by cars once the campsite is closed for the season), and then had to descend although there's some light pollution from the city on that side, not totally dark. Still not enough to avoid potholes though.
"No se deja de pedalear cuando se envejece.
Se envejece cuando se deja de pedalear"
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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby Alistar » Sat Nov 09, 2013 5:00 am

Those waves are just crazy! :shock:

Nice work on the fixie tackling the Jaizkibel!
Yeah easy to be caught out at this time of year (rel to you). I hate not being able to see the road surface when it gets dark. Guaranteed to find every pothole!
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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby bob_summers » Sun Nov 10, 2013 7:59 pm

Caught out again (in the dark) today! Some people never learn! :roll:

So some more autumnal weather this week. About time - as I can't ride during the day midweek, there's not much worse than 20º+ and sunny when I'm trapped indoors!

Tues/Thurs work commute

Weds/Fri 1hr on trainer, 2x20m 'sweetspot' ints. I like these, but I'm guessing at my sweetspot, ie 90% of FTP. Since I've got no way of knowing what this is, I just aim for the point which feels harder than tempo but not quite threshold. When I get round to buying an ANT+ speed/cadence sender, I can use GoldenCheetah to get a better estimate (GC calculates virtual watts using your wheel speed and the resistance profile of your turbo, so in absolute terms it's still only a guess, but should give me a reference point to track any improvements in my FTP). I want to train with power, but would also like to do it for essentially free! Would prefer not to be riding indoors but anyway...
No point pushing it this time of year but I'll try mixing it up a bit with 3x20m , 2x40m, 1x60m etc. Quads sore today :)

Sat
Club had to amass in the park for a group photo, I planned to get a short ride in after. But after waiting around for latecomers, and the photog to fanny around getting the composition right or who knows what, I was frozen and out of time for a ride. Bugger.

Sun
MTB Jaizkibel
45km 3h ish

Late start after getting home at 3am after the club's 25th anniversary dinner. Always interesting trying to get a vegan meal in a traditional Basque restaurant. Think I ended up with the same as last year: tomato salad, asparagus a la plancha, spaghetti in tomato sauce, an orange for dessert... I'm a cheap date :wink:
Threatened rain held off but the wind was coming off the sea in 100kmh gusts which made descending the ridgeline pretty scary (gusts coming from the right; sheer drop of about 100m to my left) and the daylight was going as well. I was prepared this time, with a decent light, so the last section through the wooods was fun. Yeti is really overdue some love. I've mentioned the clunking rear end and leaking fork on here before. Now I've only got a handful of working gears. Grinding through wet sand today hasn't helped any. Time for a strip down and rebuild.
"No se deja de pedalear cuando se envejece.
Se envejece cuando se deja de pedalear"
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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby bob_summers » Sun Nov 17, 2013 5:47 pm

Tues/Thu commute (hideous weather both days)
Weds/Fri turbo 2x20s. I was a bit of a plonker Fri, got on the turbo and realised the rear tyre was flat (worn right thru the carcase), so rather than fix the flat I put the fixie on the turbo. It doesn't quite fit (rear axle too narrow), and to prevent the tyre rubbing on the plastic case I had to lean the bike slightly. I knew at the time I was doing something stupid, but couldn't figure out what. The next day my arse was agony! All my weight on one sit-bone had bruised the tissue or tweaked the muscle, I don't know what exactly but it still hurts!

Sat
Cruce de Arano
55km fixie

I think I've decided to just keep things ticking over, felt good to be out on a cold dry day but couldn't be bothered to work hard. Cruised.

Sun
Zumaia
75km fixie

More cruis'n. Cold again, around 8º, but wet roads (and hence wet feet and arse) made it feel colder. Must buy mudguards. I hoped to get through life without ever owning mudguards or an umbrella... but middle age is calling and I can see me buying both in the near future :oops:
"No se deja de pedalear cuando se envejece.
Se envejece cuando se deja de pedalear"
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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby Alistar » Fri Nov 22, 2013 4:54 am

Ha! The old "fix one problem and cause another trick". Hope your arse has recovered by now!

Yeah hate the way the front wheel sprays water basically straight at your feet and they get drenched within seconds.
Not sure about the umbrella though :wink:
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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby bob_summers » Sun Nov 24, 2013 8:21 pm

I've managed without 'guards for so many years, but I blame it on age :D Putting shoes on that haven't dried out from yesterday even though it wasn't raining - just spray from the wheel... Ordered some crud roadracers - they're going on the fixie so I hope it won't be a pain to get the wheel out for a puncture.

Same as same as: Mon/Tue/Thurs commute, Weds/Fri 1h turbo. Crappy weather but somehow avoided the downpours when I was going to/from work. Wet feet/arse though :P

Sat 23/11
50km-ish fixie

Miserable ride. Saw two birds hit by cars directly in front of me (and had to ride through the cloud of feathers), then punctured after about 45m. Changed it, but guess the spare was a dud, as it slowly went flat. Didn't have another, so had to stop every few mins to top it up. Then the valve threads stripped (screw-on pump) and couldn't even do that so limped home on the rim.

Sun 24/11
110km fixie

Did my usual loop through France, it's not really hilly so OK on fixed (took about 15m longer than usual). The few hills there are did drag on and on though. 7deg and dry, so nice conditions. Only fly in the ointment was a trapped nerve in my shoulder which made looking back for traffic difficult. Wouldn't like to do it fixed in company, but a nice route for the future.
"No se deja de pedalear cuando se envejece.
Se envejece cuando se deja de pedalear"
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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby bob_summers » Sun Dec 01, 2013 4:18 pm

The 'guards must be one of the best things I've ever bought for a bike! They're a bit flimsy, but the best you're gonna get on a frame not designed for them. Rode yesterday after rain, wet roads but a dry arse for once. Makes all the difference.


Mon/Tue/Thurs commute, Weds 1h turbo. Trying some Sufferfest vids to liven things up on the turbo. 5x4' ints, trying to hold Cancellara's wheel as he attacks off the front at P-R :P Some of the footage they use for the rests between intervals was shot round here - quite disconcerting to be riding local roads on the turbo.

Sat 30/11
50km Cruce de Arano fixie

Fed up of this run, time for a new one.

Sun 24/11
80km Meagas Zumaia fixie, return via river (Zubieta).

Some funny numbers came out of Strava - the climb up to Meagas (5km, little more than false flat) must suit my gear as I got an 8th place on Strava. Wasn't pushing either, just enough to stay on top of the gear.
Then on the descent I reached 73kmh, which on 48*16 is about 190rpm. If it's the real speed and not a GPS error, I'm staggered my legs will go round that fast, even for just a few secs. I can hold 165rpm for a while on the turbo but 190 is ridiculous.
"No se deja de pedalear cuando se envejece.
Se envejece cuando se deja de pedalear"
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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby Alistar » Tue Dec 03, 2013 10:10 am

Ha! can just imagine you bouncing all over the saddle, and smoke coming out of your BB at that speed! :lol:
8th on a hillclimb on a fixie? Good stuff!

Mudguards sound worth it! Not sure how they'd attach to mine, but I could always get those commuter ones that attach to the seatpost on the rear anyway. But then I'm more of a fair weather rider so probably don't really need any. Would be handy though.
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Re: ...or, how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bu

Postby bob_summers » Sun Dec 08, 2013 11:35 pm

The beauty of guards is when you go out just after rain - pretty annoying to have shoes full of water before the end of the street, even though it isn't raining!
I bought these http://www.wiggle.es/juego-de-guardabar ... racer-mk2/, not sure anything else would fit the clearances on my frame.

Mon/Tues/Thu
Commute, about 50km all-in.
Nothing to remark other than finding a coffee shop that is actually pretty good! With baristas and everything!

Weds
Turbo 1h
Used the sufferfest again.I got a linux box working with GoldenCheetah, so had virtual power to play with. Not sure if I like it - nowhere to hide now :oops: Haven't set it up with my critical power, but it felt pretty close as I coped with the first three intervals but the last two I couldn't match the watts and felt pretty nauseous afterwards. Looking forward to fiddling with it more (although looking forward more to the longer days and not having to train inside!)

Fri
Entire household down with a nasty cold so sacked training

Sat
Larraitz 95km fixie 28kmh
Perfect day, cold 10º and clear, was out a bit late so luckily headed home away from the setting sun. Larraitz is a pretty slack climb, normally big ring on a compact, so no worries on the fixed. Stopped to get a couple of pics on the way up. Last 10km I was caught by a crew of fixie hipsters, four of them on track bikes. Really weird as I see a few around town but never very far from the bars :wink: I said hello and tried to strike up a conversation but obviously looked too square with my mudguards and frame pump (and lack of beard), they weren't very friendly! So I took a pull for them, wound things up and to their credit a couple did hang on for a while despite running short gearing, then turned off as I didn't fancy getting rear-ended (couple with no brakes...)

Sun
France 110km fixie 28kmh
More of the same weather. Felt a bit fried with the ride yesterday and still not right after the cold (plus hardly sleeping as the wee'an is waking up all hours with his nose full of snot) so a bit slower than last time round. A bit fed up with the French drivers, they get noticeably more aggressive toward cyclists from the moment you cross the border. Got a 'punishment pass' by a wanker who was gesticulating that I should be on the pavement, so I flipped the bird - this was greeted with a punishment pass from the driver behind me! Lost my rag a bit and tried to get the second driver to stop for a 'chat' but calmed down when I saw his female passenger going mental at him :lol: Apart from that, there's a reluctance (maybe ignorance of what the law says) to cross the centre line when passing a cyclist, so they come super-close (on the Spanish side they have to give 1.5m to cyclists), try to squeeze past at pinch-points, can't use roundabouts (which they invented!) moan moan moan. So I might take a course in French insults and arguing as I feel pretty stupid having to resort to English or Spanish to do it :wink:
That aside, nice easy ride until the last couple of hills.

Image
Txindoki (1346m) from the climb to Larraitz
"No se deja de pedalear cuando se envejece.
Se envejece cuando se deja de pedalear"
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