Monthly Archives: July 2011


Today I finally had an extended HP visit. First one in a long time. Its was sunny, cool and quiet and I was all alone.  Just the way I like it. Thought out many issues. In the past I always made too many snap decisions about important stuff. While not all were right, I think the majority was. But my Happy Place is just a tool I use to decide things. Its an easy place to work things out.
 This is the place where I decided to go for the bike store two and a half years ago.
This is the place where I decided to take the Trucker in its maiden voyage today!
Racks on. Its done!

Got the racks and fenders on last nite. Now I need to work on bags. Which I will borrow from friends until I decide what kind to get.
And as I mentioned the gear will be a priority also. When I toured the state in 2008 everything was borrowed except for the bike ( I used Pinky) and I am looking to purchase this time. And I got to get the good stuff cuz I dont want to be replacing it by next year.

I will wait till 10am, when the store opens and the guys get here and I am off on this beast. Weight with racks? I was surprised with 36 pounds. I was sure it was going to be over 40. I expect to hang about 70 pounds of stuff in the bike. Between my body weight and bike, I should be king of the downhills. If in fact I do carry 70 pounds, thats going to be a total of 366 pounds of rolling madness. Disc brakes would not have been a bad idea. But I’ll make due.
Its looking like a good couple of days weather wise so its game on. Group ride tomorrow. Maybe trails will be dried out by Sunday? Have a good weekend. Ride your bike.


Long Haul Trucker.

The Long Haul Trucker is almost ready to go. Just mount these to rad Surly racks and fenders and its pretty much good to go. I am looking forward to using it. Not only for touring\commuting but I think it will make a good winter bike too. Its got wheels, brakes and rear driveline off one of my old MTB’s. Crank is a 10 year old Ultegra last used on Pinky. Shifters off of Pinky too.
And I am planning a tour this summer. Most likely a weekender, but a tour none the less.
Maintenance at the HP. They keep it looking good for me 815am

Along with my normal summer bike riding I always like to do “other” types of riding. MTB racing is one of those. Track racing is another. And then the natural progression will lead me to century’s. And then touring.
I start every spring with all the best intentions. Lose weight. Get fit (fit enough to race anyway) and do the bike stuff all summer. Then, one by one, I ditch the rides. First to go is the track. Im just too heavy and it is an hour and a half away on a Tuesday nite.
Then, next in line would be the century’s. Would not be able to keep up to the group let alone for 100 miles. Then, I cut back on the MTB races. At minimum I always do a couple a year. So far this year I have only done one…. the opener in early May. Have not been to one since. But I plan on one or two more this summer. So ditching most of this summers ambitions have left a pretty good sized hole in my schedule that I have just filled with work. Enter the Long Haul Trucker (and the Pugsly).

Touring is a ton of fun. But kinda expensive to do it right. Sure, I got into the bike pretty cheap, but its the light weight tents, bags and camping stuff thats costly. You cant just but a tent from Walmart. Way to big and heavy. The tent Im looking at weighs 38 oz and packs into a 20 by 4 inch space.
So you need to be a little backpacker fancy to tour. Then the good panniers are pricey too. Water proof is the only way to go. Just buy the best bags you can get. They last forever.

Next year I am thinking of a touring clinic and maybe setting up a small tour to a local park. Self supported of course. That would be fun. And thoughts on that are for another day.
As for fitness (Im saying the F word a lot lately) my long rides have pushed me toward very good touring fitness. Long sustained efforts have been the norm for me this summer.
So Im setting it up. Doin’ it for real.



Greenbush. 915am
Today I got out on the MTB. Yesterday I got out on the Madone. Today as I rode I had thoughts about my fitness. Does fitness mean skinny? Not really. I was thinking on how different fitness means between the MTB and a road bike. I was thinking fitness in general.
If you looked at me you would not think I am fit cuz I am overweight. But I think I am.
Today, on the MTB, I felt pretty good. Of course I was working hard on the climbs, and for sure was slow getting up them, but, I push a ton more watts than any of my skinny riding buddies at that speed. So here I was climbing in granny gear, at 2 mph. If a skinny guy was pushing these kind of watts here they would be doing 10. So, in theory, if I can push the wattage (or more) than the skinny guys, but going way slower, the question is am I as fit as they?
Also when your MTBing fitness is not always measured in power output but in how fast you recover.
 Not sure where I fall in that category. But I do need to do it a lot. At the start of todays ride I was as expected all over the place. Shifting at the wrong times, picking bad lines. And again, got better as the day went. I was forced to ride as fast as I could as the flies could chase me down on the climbs. And they were biting hard today.
So all in all a good ride. Solo so the iPod was on full blast but there was no chance of getting hit by a car today. And thats always a good thing.
Ive made a decision to cut back my work hours. I was running about 65 per week. Im gonna cut 10 out of that. Its needed. Also, I am not going to do any vending at the MTB races except for Sheboygan.
I need my weekends and I want to go to the WORS races to have fun.
Not that it was not fun to vend, its fun to be there. But along with that gos a lot of prep and post work by getting the stuff back in the store. From now on I’ll just go and race like you guys.
Next post is most likely Thursday as Im riding again in morn….. \
Road for many hours….
Bring it on.