Wednesday, March 23, 2016

MTC3 Chicago Weekday Road Cycling Group Ride

Spirited ride on 3/23 @ 6:30am  starting and ending at 87th and Lake Shore Drive in Chicago with a mid way stop at Starbucks in Schererville, Indiana with a couple fellow Major Taylor Cycling Club Chicago members.

Love riding with the Major Taylor Cycling Club fast crew. The weather is finally getting above 40 so it's time to start these cycling rides in the southside of Chicago back up on Tuesdays and Thursday mornings.  Small bits of bike trail otherwise the vast majority of the ride is on the road.  Training ride focusing on drafting and paceline work within the peloton.

Bicycle ride recorded using front and rear facing Garmin Virb cameras, Garmin 810 head unit and produced using Virb Edit software.

Strava Ride:
Youtube Video:

Sunday, March 20, 2016

2015 In Review - Making Cycling a Priority

It has been quite some time since my last post.  Although much has changed my passion for cycling has become more pronounced.  2015 Was a terrific year.  I look forward to repeating many of the same rides and events and inject a few new events.

In 2015 I ...
  • Swam 7 times for a total distance of 4.36 miles in 2.5 hours
  • Cycled 194 times for a total distance of 3,900 miles in 290 hours
  • Ran 19 times for a total distance of 69 miles in 15 hours
At this point I consider the running and swimming activities as active recovery as I need it.  My 2015 swim and run numbers are down substantially from 2014 but my cycling is up by 1,000 miles.

What happened?

Time is the issue.  Between work and other life activities I had to make a choice.  I chose cycling as it gave me the most caloric burn for the time invested and I simply love being outside on a bike.

Jason Ward finishing the 2015 Lowell 50 Gravel Race.  50 miles of dirt, gravel, sand and a touch of pavement at about 280 lbs.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Ride tot he Res - Group Bike Ride 03-19-2016

Had a great bicycle ride with Fernando, Justin Schlitt, Zatch and Dan.
Ended with 34 miles at a 16 mph average speed. Little bit higher than advertised but that is who showed up. 

Bicycle ride recorded using front and rear facing Garmin Virb cameras, Garmin 810 head unit and produced using Virb Edit software.
smile emotico

Details of the ride posting...

  • Date:  Saturday, 3/19/2016
  • Arrival Time: 8:45 AM
  • Departure Time:  9:00am SHARP
  • End Time:  11:30 am
  • Ride Leader: Jason Ward 
  • Start Location: Goodspeed Cycles  2125 183rd St, Homewood, IL 60430
  • Distance/Time Duration:  34 miles @ 2.5 hours
  • Average Speed and Rolling Speed: Computer 15 mph, rolling 16-18 mph
  • Drop Ride  (We will stop for flats/mechanicals).
  • Route and Description of the ride:  No egos … just a solid early season training ride.  While this is a drop ride, we aren’t racing just holding the training pace that is listed.

    Weatherman is calling for a high of 41 with a 11 mph NE wind.  This will make for a great tailwind heading south to the Reservoir but a headwind on the way back to GoodSpeed Cycles.  A portion of the route back should protect use from the wind.

    We will ride south to Monee Reservoir (17 miles - ½ way) and take a quick break to refuel,  bathroom and let others catch up. There is a concession stand that sells bottled water, gatorade, candy bars, etc.
  • Goodspeed Cycles will not be open when we leave.  However they will be open when we return and have all the accommodations of a bike shop including a bathroom :)
  • Exact Route:

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Washing the Bikes in Early Spring

It's that kind of day. Bikes were dirty and I need some time for reflection.

I cleaned the drivetrains, wheels, frame and all else with Zep Commercial Heavy-Duty Degreaser in a spray bottle and a couple good brushes.

Quick tip: Never use the same brush on your drivetrain (chain, gears and cogs) anywhere else on your bike.  Just don't.  You will inevitably get grease and dirt from your chain and such all over the rest of your bike.

Just when I finished cleaning all 3 bikes the sun made an appearance and I was moved to get a quick ride in.

And before you ask ... No, l will not wash your bike :)

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

It's Tubesday!

Picked up 3 different tube size/stem lengths for my steeds. #beprepared

  • 700c x 23-25mm w/60mm valve stem - Used for my 2013 Trek Madone road bike with 50 mm carbon wheels and 25mm tires.
  • 700c x 23-25mm w/48mm valve stem - used for my alloy road wheels when I use 25mm tires. 
  • 700c x 28-32mm w/48mmm valve stem - used for my allow wheels when I use any of my 32-35mm cyclocross or gravel tires.

Yes, Blackstone Bicycle Works in Chicago, Illinois has these tubes and if I remember correctly they are $5 each. Otherwise Outside Outfitters carries them at a great price.

At the end of the day tubes are tubes.  Use what you like.  These happen work great for my needs and at a resonable price point..

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Changing a Flat - Where do you put your bike?

What do you do with your bike when changing a flat?  Personally I love my bikes too much to turn them upside-down such that it is making contact with the ground with its saddle and brake/shifter hoods.

If you are riding in a group one of the other rides should hold your bike and heckle you as you fumble your flat repair.  At the very least someone should be timing you :)

Here are a couple ways to deal with you bike if you are alone...

This is the classic.  Hang your bicycle by the nose of the saddle from a tree branch.  My preferred method.

Lay your bike drivetrain side up in the grass.

Hang your bike from any nearby thing by the nose of the seat.

Carefully hang it by the handlebars over a fence drive side out.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

2013 was the year of activity and meeting new friends.

I have a few different groups I #swim#bike and/or #run with now and have met many new great people. These type of groups exist everywhere you just have to look a bit harder.

** 133 runs for 423 miles in 87 hours. A lot of those runs were outside mostly in Dec. for #Marcothon
** 176 rides for 3,600 miles in 224 hours. Only 32 of these were indoors mostly training for indoor triathlon training and trainer rides. MANY group rides with the great folks at GoodSpeed Cycles. I even picked up a new road bike in April from GoodSpeed which is what most of the miles were put on.
** 60 swims for 37 miles (65,120 yards) in 20 hours. Only 4 were in open water - Lake Michigan. Solo lap swimming at H-F Racquet & Fitness Club. I still do not know how to swim but I am joining a swim masters group this week so wish me luck.

I have lost 40ish lbs and about 10 inches off my waist. I used to shop exclusively at big and tall stores because I was too big for normal stores. Now, I can no longer shop at big and tall stores because I am too small, lol. The only clothes I can fit from a year ago are my shoes and socks. My diet still needs LOTS of work as i am an emotional eater ... so I exercise more. 

My lifestyle has been forever altered!