Sunday, January 10, 2010

First Bike Commute of 2010

January 6 I made my first bike commute of the New Year. I learned a couple things on this ride. Foremost is that I am not as fast as I thought on the new bike. Apparently this new cycling computer my brother & sister-in-law gave me for Christmas is smarter than me. Or I'm just a dumbass. The cycling computer will stop running the elapsed time when the bike is stopped for more than a few seconds. Makes sense. I didn't realize this when I used the computer's elapsed time to compare to my previous bike commutes timed with my wristwatch. Obviously the watch's stopwatch feature won't stop counting until I tell it to, so it is counting all the time I'm stopped waiting at stoplights.

I hadn't worn my watch on the first bike commute with the Masi. Since I remembered to wear my watch this time around, I figured I would run both clocks as a check. My elapsed time on the cycling computer was 23:15. My watch had me at 27:30. (I'm slightly rounding off the cycle computer time since it does still run as I'm walking the bike into the office since the front wheel continues to roll.) I still think this is a minute or so faster than I usually was on the mountain bike, so I'm still happy, just not as stoked as I was before. Aw, wait, a quick check back into my archives reveals I clocked in at 24 minutes for Bike Commute #4. I think I made all the lights that day, so little stopping. Hrrmm. At least the good news is that from now on I will know how much actual cycling time I am taking, and not counting the extended stops.

Another reminder of how slow I (still) am occurred on the ride home from work. As I'm struggling on the upside of a small valley section, an older guy on a skinny-tired bike blows right past me (I'm running the stock 700x35c 'cross tires - wide by most road bike standards). I do have one excuse: I was wearing a messenger bag, somewhat full of clothes, and it kept shifting on me during the ride home (on the way to work, it was fine). Still, I'm sure it was a pathetic sight, me sucking wind in nearly my lowest gear, and it's not even that steep a grade. Maybe I should have gotten a bike with a triple crank! I tried to blurt out "hey!" to the guy as he passed me, but he didn't give me so much as a sideways glance or nod. Why can't some people just say "hi" instead of being rude assholes?

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