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Sunday, December 21, 2008

Short, cold ride!

Wow, I forgot how cold - 30 wind chill is. I did a little 2 mile errand ride today and I'll tell ya what! It exposed the chinks in my cold weather gear, that's for sure. My gloves need replacing....the seams leak cold air.

My balaclava from Dick's Sporting Goods was a godsend, though. Neofleece and it kept the face and head nicely warm without too much bulk or sweating. It fit under the helmet nicely. The only thing is, it's the brightest orange I've ever seen. Good for visibility, though.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Merry Christmas To All!

I've been absolutely swamped this semester, so I haven't posted with any regularity. I really got nothing right now that is cycling related, but I did have a few minutes free today, so I recorded my favorite Christmas song, and put together a little video.

Merry Christmas or Seasons Greetings, or Happy Hanukkah, or happy Solstice, depending on your particular flavor of faith or even lack thereof.


Saturday, October 11, 2008

I Started A Lafayette Cycling Forum


As the headline says, I started Lafayettefixedgear today. It's a local forum, for Tippecanoe County and surrounding Communities. Think about signing up! I'll add a road bike forum if there seems to be interest as well, but I'm concentrating on Fixed Gear for now.

If you ride Fixed in the surrounding counties, or are just interested, we'll be adding content as we get new members. What we feature is the ability to embed video, images, and it's even FREE!

Drop on by and check it out!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Time for Bicycle Commuting!

Classes have started for the fall now, and I must say, the weather has been spectacular for a bike commuter. I'm attending Purdue University now, and things are shiney! Purdue is interesting to commute both to, and around, though.

First off, traffic can get pretty intense on the edge of campus, what with the parking spot vultures, oblivious student drivers, and everyone being in a hurry. The pedestrians aren't much better either. I understand far better the derisive use of the term "Meat Pylon" in referring to a pedestrian. It's often like an obstacle course where the obstacles can suddenly and unpredictable move into your path!

One example, today, well, Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, I have to get across campus during a 10 minute break. This requires some pretty fast pacing to pull it off, and it seems like every walker on campus is determined to get in front of me and slow me up.

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Cross Campus Route

The are a lot of bike facilities, such as racks, on campus,and a lot of cyclists as well. Fortunately, soon enough, the new Freshman class will get a little better trained in how to deal with cyclists, etc, and learn their way about campus as well, so they won't be so blind to their surroundings. Meantime, I get to ride with extreme care.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Cranky-T's....Cycling Wear for the Average Guy!

Cranky T's in Pennsylvania is a start up, selling T-Shirts centered around Cycling. It's a nice company with a great guy running it. Operated by Digix Consulting, they offer a line of very comfortable T's with various colors available. If you aren't one of the folk that likes to wear Lycra Jerseys that are skin tight, these are for you!

http://www.digixconsulting.com/t-shirts

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Triathlon Video!

I started an account with Veoh TV. I have the tri video uo there, as well as started a Clydesdale and Athena gropu where you can upload videos you create as well. Just watch the copyrights.....Veoh is positively anal about it! I used a bit of Techno that is under Creative Commons, and it actually improved the video.


Online Videos by Veoh.com

Enjoy!

Monday, June 30, 2008

Race Report: My First Triathlon Event!

Allrighty! As y'all know, I did my first Triathlon as part of a 2 person team this weekend.......only because I couldn't do the swim this time. First feedback: A Tri is TOUGH! I did the cycling and running part, and that was near enough to kill me.

Part I: Cycling.............

My Niece did the swim, so she made the 1K swim in 11 minutes and change, first transition was done in 1:45. Here is where I came in. I took off on the cycling course. 13.82 miles, and I was riding against a 10-15 MPH headwind on rolling terrain. The course ran from Warsaw, Indiana to Pierceton, Indiana and back. The course was very well marked. I hammered as hard as I could against the wind, and generally uphill against a headwind. When I got to the turnaround point, my wonderful luck strikes. The blasted wind switched, and it was starting to look like storms were moving in. The wind switch no meant I was riding back, you guessed it, against a headwind......again! So much for the good thoughts of a tailwind!

So, I'm slogging back against the headwind, pushing through the wind like a wall. I got passed by a kid on a full suspension mountain bike....a Huffy, no less, with knobbies. This wasn't going to fly, I can tell you. I pushed hard and managed to pass this kid back. he was holding an 18 MPH average speed, and was really a strong rider. I dropped down into the aerobars and just held on to the ride....and can guarantee you I went anaerobic on the return. 58 minutes on the cycling section, and a 4:45 transition to the run. I could have done better, I think, but still managed to hit a peak of 28 MPH coming back into Warsaw at the very end of the cycling leg. I got into the transition area and that last sprint had nearly done me in, and I still had the run segment to do.

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I did the 5 K in 1:08 and a few seconds, and I really am NOT a runner. I had to shuttle back and forth between a run and a walk. I did make the finish at a run, though. That's my Aunt running along beside me, encouraging me to keep pushing. That last quarter mile of the run was literally the worst hurting from exercise I've ever experienced. I made it across the line so bonked I couldn't even undo the ankle tag device and could barely stand. I was literally on the edge of falling, I was so spent. I was pretty cooked at the end, and I really have no idea where I got the push from for that final run, but where ever it came from, I love it! My finish was at the middle of the pack out of 50 teams, we placed at 25.

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This was bar none, the toughest event I've ever done. I definitely have the triathlon bug......bad! Our time of 2:31.6 wasn't the fastest, by any means, but when you consider that 3 years ago, I was more or less in a wheelchair, you can get the scope of this in my mind. I'm in the Tri game for the long haul....it's a blast! If you really want to challenge yourself, this is where you can do it.

I've also added a bit of video from the race. It's time compressed to make it a bit more interesting.
http://www.badongo.com/vid/777019

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Nice Training Ride today....

I have a training partner, one of my former instructors from School. Her name is Jennie. I'll tell you, she has some serious potential as a rider! She's strong pushing into the wind, and steady and rides the dame pace as my average. She likes to push it, too. 2 Thumbs Up

We did a nice little 20 miler today, just playing around in Lafayette, but have set the goal of a loop to Frankfort and back by the end of July, a nice little 59 miler. I may tweak the route a bit to make it a full metric century though.

Things are also looking up for my upcoming triathlon Saturday up in Warsaw, Indiana. It's the Optimist Club Triathlon, and this will be my first one. As I mentioned, my shoulder is still giving me issues, so I'll be doing the cycling and running part only, and my niece will be doing the swim. Swimming

I'm able to hold a decent average speed, so, I don't think I''ll be coming in dead last......I really don't care what place I finish, though. I just plan on finishing it.

Friday, June 20, 2008

After a modestly successful Tour de Cure,, I'm now gettiing ready for my first Triathlon....

June 28th, I'll be in Warsaw, Indiana for the Optimist Club Triathlon. You can click the title of this post to go to the Triathlon website, if you'd like. Since I'm not healed up from the crash a few weeks ago completely, I did have to go team on the tri!

I recruited a swimmer, since I'm not back even to 60% on shoulder strength and 75-80% mobility. I am doing mobility therapy though and can expect a good recovery, just some pain is all. Wish me luck, all! I don't care if I come in DFL, I'll come in.

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Monday, June 16, 2008

Tour de Cure, 2008 is in the bag!

This years Tour was a rousing success! We had a great ride and both my personal efforts as well as Team Stormcrowe exceeded our goals!Let me introduce the rogues gallery of Team Stormcrowe, to start things off.

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Photo by Chad, our team photographer/videographer

Left to right, rear row, Phil (St Louis), Beverly (Ohio), Me, Joe (Bloomington, IN), and Mark (Greenwood, IN)
front row, Denny (SW PA) and Jerry (Chicago area). We had trouble getting everyone in the shot because we'd scattered a bit at this time and as a result, couldn't get everyone together....so, I'll add in some other shots singly momentarily.

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Fred, aka 10wheels. He came up from Houston, TX for the ride




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Here we are, getting registered for the ride. My wife also volunteered for this event. She ran the registration for the Century ride on the track.

Now, a little about Fred. He missed the Century mark by 6 miles....he just ran out of time on the track. He's a mile monster....and I'm really impressed with his performance.
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Another member was Thomas R, aka scummer on http://www.bikeforums.net. He got a little later start, and still cranked out the Century, + a few insurance miles and a tad over 105. No pictures of him, unfortunately.

Bev: 67 miles
Denny: 67 miles
Jerry: 84 miles
Mark: did the 50K ride
Me: 41.2 miles attempting the Century with an injured shoulder. It got too painful to ride.
Phil: 70+ miles

People were riding all kinds of bikes, ranging from Trikes

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to a Penny Farthing

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and all configurations of road bikes

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The track is the smoothest surface you'll ever ride, there at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It made for some fast riding conditions. It was a great day and all of us are going to do it again next year.

Now, to close with Jim McKays words, in sports, there is the thrill of victory

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and the agony of defeat

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This year, my injuries from my training crash 3 weeks ago stopped me, but I'll not let that discourage me.....next year, I will finish the Century.




Team Stats: Fundraising:

Me: $1100.00
Team Stormcrowe overall: $3935.00

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Tour de Cure: 3 Whole Days Away!

Well, here I am, in 72 hours, I'll be in Indianapolis for the night before the ride. 100 miles on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. I've got less than 2 weeks post crash training, so the ride is definitely going to be a challenge for me. Well, pain is life, they say.....so I'll be experiencing some definite life!

I have about 80 % of my shoulder mobility back and about 45% of the strength. My next entry will be after the ride, to either bask in glory or as Jim McKay used to say, experience the agony of defeat.....

I hit my fundraising goal of $1000.00, personally and Team Stormcrowe hit over the goal at $3750.00 of a $3300.00 goal. In expectation of Saturdays ride, here's where MY head is going to be......

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Saturday, May 31, 2008

Heavy Weather in the Lafayette Area

We had the tornado sirens going off in the Lafayette, Indiana area tonight. (Well, it's after midnight, so yesterday evening.). May 30, at about 7:00 PM or so, the National Weather Service issued a Tornado Warning for Lafayette and the surrounding region. The Storm tracked through Battleground, Indiana. I was able to get video footage of the storm as it passed to the north. I believe I may have gotten a tornado on the ground briefly, or at the least a very strong downburst.



It was a wild ride, though, watching this and I'm afraid I got the wwife a bit mad at me that I was out there getting footage rather than hiding in the tub, but it was too good an opportunity to miss.

WLFI-TV did also pick up a small amount of my video footage for the 11:00 Weather Report. The above is my footage post edit to assemble it. I left the audio raw. This same storm front apparently also dropped a strong tornado on Indianapolis and nearly leveled 300 apartments at 38th and Mithoffer. Wild night in Indiana tonight!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Update: Tour de Cure and Video

Well, here's the deal.......

Tour de Cure is about 3 weeks away and I'm $35.00 from my goal. It's looking good though. I will be making the attempt at the Century, in spite of my crash.I have about 65% of my shoulder mobility back and am rehabbing it religiously. If you want to help me meet my goal, here is my Tour Page

As to how I handle it? Who knows? I'll see when I'm in it. Pain is weakness leaving the body after all. I'll be resuming riding after Memorial day weekend, though, and I'll only have 2 weeks to train for a 100 mile ride after a crash.

All you really have to remember is that ultimately, you set your own limits arbitrarily, and are far more capable than you believe. Take control of your life, use whatever tools that you need to and you have a far greater chance of achieving your goals than if you only dream and never act. Take charge and commit.

Now, for the update on my progress after 3 years since my surgery.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

48 Year Olds Don't Bounce! : Ride and Crash Report

Holy Cow! I thought I was hurting when I got home last night. This morning, my wife had to help me out of bed. What happened is last night, I crashed on a training ride.

Damnedest thing, I was banging along, getting a really good sprint, got a little squirrelly feeling in the back, and next thing I know, me and my bicycle were on the pavement. I really don't remember much more than that. I hit the pavement at something over 25 MPH, though.

This brings me to my helmet. It was a Bell Solar, and frankly, the Dr tells me if I hadn't been wearing it, there's a real good chance I'd be either dead or comatose from the impact area and damage to the helmet. The helmet is absolutely trashed, but it did it's job well.....it absorbed the energy of the impact.

As to my injuries, a pranged up my shoulder and right hip and have sore ribs. The shoulder is deep muscle bruising in the trapezoids, and the hip is impact bruising as well. My noggin is fine, though, but I have a really sore neck as well from the impact. I have some significant road rash on my right leg as well, and I'm generally VERY stiff and sore.

I learned a few things though. First, I need a better light, I was on a night ride, and didn't see the pavement problem that caused me to crash. Coincidentally, my light is trashed as well, so hey....opportunity to upgrade. Second, I've occasionally taken a few short rides without a helmet......NEVER AGAIN! If I hadn't been wearing it, I wouldn't be making this post. Third: 48 year old men hurt more after a crash. Who'da thunk! I'm having to use a cane to move around the house right now, and my arm is in a sling.

I uploaded some pics of the helmet core and road rash, etc, and I really wish I'd had my video camera rolling. It would have been awesome video!


Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Press Release: There's a New Site on the Net!

Free listings on TheCyclePeople.com!

During the month of May, bike shops, tour operators, and accommodation owners that link their site to TheCyclePeople.com will get free listings for the remainder of 2008.

Manufacturers have already uploaded thousands of products to the site's database, making it easy to search for the latest cycling gear. And over 7,000 US and UK bike shops are listed as well. Shop owners that take advantage of this opportunity will get an enhanced listing for their shop, complete with details on the product lines they carry. Tour operators and accommodation owners can upload photos and detailed descriptions of their offerings as well.

It's a completely risk-free way to gain exposure to over 1.5 million cyclists this year, on a site dedicated to becoming the one-stop site for cyclists around the world. Businesses wishing to take advantage of this offer should visit www.TheCyclePeople.com/Advertise - offer closes May 30th 2008.

About TheCyclePeople.com: The portal for cycling enthusiasts allows users to search by product (more added weekly), to search for a bike shop anywhere in the US and UK (expanding to other countries) to find cycling holidays and accommodation worldwide, and to access the forums (link) for interacting with other cyclists. Over 20,000 businesses are currently featured. For more details about TheCyclePeople.com or the May Free Listings Offer, please contact info@thecyclepeople.com


Monday, May 05, 2008

Commencing on Commencement!

Well, it's been a busy couple of weeks for me. I graduated Sunday. I finished up my Associates Degree and am moving on the a 4 year in the Fall. I actually have one presentation to do for my Sociology Class, but have that whipped very nicely.

So, on to the pics.

Graduate

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Been a rough week for riding though. For the first time since I was hurt, I got less than 10 miles in on the bike this wee. I did have a good excuse though.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Well, I am Doing triathlon, FOR SURE!

View Interactive Map on MapMyRide.com

Above is a very rough approximation of the course for the cycling section. Looks like a roller, and if the weather cooperates, should be a nice ride! All I have to do is run and swim as well. Imagine, I was in a wheelchair three years ago this time of the year, and here I am, committed to doing a sprint Triathlon.....who'da thunk!

Well, I suppose I ought to put that bike of mine to the purpose it was intended for.....racing! Actually, I don't care where I place, but I will finish it. Wish me luck! Here is the actual map of the race.


Old Molena, Ga City Jail

Friday, April 18, 2008

Midwestern Earthquake!


Image from USGS

Yep, we had an earthquake this morning. 5.4 on the Richter Scale. It woke me up from a dead sleep at 5:38 AM Eastern Time. No damage here, other than some pictures knocked askew and a couple fell off the walls.

This quake was interesting in that we're about 208 miles from the epicenter in New Salem, Illinois, which is about 22 miles SW of Vincennes, Indiana. Apparently, from what I gather, the quake was felt as far away as Northern Florida. You don't normally think of Central Indiana or the Midwest as an earthquake zone, but it is!

The New Madrid fault, which runs up along the Mississippi River valley is relatively near. We're also on the edge of the Wabash Valley Seismic Zone. The epicenter of the earthquake is very
near the large red dot near the Indiana/Illinois Border. More aftershocks are occurring as we speak. It's going to be an interesting day.


Homeland Security has their earthquake preparedness plan in action, and INDOT are currently out checking Bridges and overpasses.

Further information about Indiana Earthquakes is available here.



Now, the good news! We have a gorgeous day today and I'm going to go ride my bike!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

New Cycling Technology: Power assist for a recumbent trike

Well, there's a new breakthrough in Trike Technology.....the Ion Assisted Trike.

Ion Powered Trike


This new technology will increase the efficiency or trike usege and provide reliable high speed transportation at minimal energy costs./ Fuel mileage is estimated at 1200 miles/gram of Deuterium in it's miniaturized TOKAMAK fusion reactor. This powers a high thrust Ion Thrust unit.

This new technology makes for a fun and fast recumbent trike. The Concept is developed by Stormcrowe Engineering, and will be available in the near future....just as soon as we address that tendency to lift to orbit if the rider allows the steer wheel to rise at speed.

This trike will revolutionize touring as well as cycle commuting.

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