Thursday, July 31, 2008


Nice ride again tonight. Didn't feel quite as tired. I guess that's good. Saw several friends out there as well. Took the cx and got some grocery shopping done earlier today. It's all good! 36/17.5 and an additional 8 doing the grocery shopping.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

It's All About The $$$

Made money on the bike again today. Put about 22 miles on for some work at the courthouse and some pictures I took of a property.
Just got in from an additional 40 miles this evening. Did my Theo Wirth route. I don't think I've put that on Map My Ride yet, but I have added a couple more of my routes in the last day or two. I'm still riding slow. I can tell I don't have it in my legs, but I love being out on my bike whether it's fast or slow. 62/16.9 for the 40

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Just For Miles

Man I'm tired. Nice ride tonight despite the hot, humid and windy conditions. I'm getting use to considering my rides as "just for miles", but it seems mighty early in the season for that. Just rode the greenway, river, fort, creek and lakes. Even though I was riding slow, it felt good to be out. 39/16.8

Monday, July 28, 2008


Got in a few miles on my regular recovery Monday route. I pissed a bee off when he ran into my helmet. I don't know why he took it out on my poor bald head, and not my helmet though. It's not like my head doesn't have enough "character" already. I sure didn't need another bump on it. And Damn! A bee sting hurts!
Helped Lynne put the finishing touches on her single speed. We even took it out for a short test ride. Smiles all over the place. Just a couple of things left for her to do. 37/17.1

Sunday, July 27, 2008


Rode over to the Capitol and watched the crit this morning. Birchwood women took 3rd in the 123's, and put on a great exhibit of team work. I left shortly after their race to head over to my mom's. My daughter called and wanted to get together. She was over at my mom's with my grandson. I rode over there from the race and spent a couple of hours talking with her and playing with my grandson. He's five. Time with them, or any of my kids is priceless. It was a long day, and I am very tired, even though I only put on 45 miles. Nevertheless, I saw friends, tuned into the Tour, watched a live race, rode my bike, spent time with all of my kids, and one of my grand kids. I even saw both of my brothers. Pretty nice day, I'd say. 45/16.1

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Another Solo Century

I was lamenting on the ride today that this is the last Saturday ride of July, and Summer is winding down. This has been a weird season for me. I usually peak in June, but this year I peaked in May. I've been feeling tired since the first of June. I slowed down a little to try and recover, thinking I'd be able to get a few more Hammer rides in, but I'm still tired. Nevertheless, I've had a very good year. I accomplished the goals I'd set out, and actually did a little better than I thought I would.
Another weird aspect of this season has been my weight. I've been consistently 5-10 pounds heavier than I was last year at the same time. That leaves me a little surprised that my miles are up along with my average speeds.
Rode to Hanover today, then into Rockford, Delano, Watertown, Mayer, Waconia, Victoria and home. Between Watertown and Mayer is a very rural stretch. It's one of the prettier stretches on all of my routes, with farms, lakes and very little traffic. I'm heading south and I see, in a front yard of a farm house, a cow kind of leaning back on it's hind legs. In front of the cow is a 16 year old boy that is maybe a foot taller that the cow. The boy has the cow by the face, he must of had a bit or harness or something that I couldn't see, pulling the cow. The boy and the cow were facing each other, but obviously weren't working together. The boy saw me on my bike, and without taking his hands off the cow, or losing any ground to the cow, watched me ride by. He had a preplexed look on his face, like what is he doing out here, apparently unaware how out of the ordinary the boy and the cow's manuvers looked to me.
There is very little between Watertown and Mayer. Like I said a few farms, lakes and no traffic. About a mile after I saw the boy and his cow, I see a cyclist coming from the opposite direction heading towards me. The closer he gets the more familiar he looks. Yep! It's Ron. We stop and talk for about 15 minutes. I got a kick out of the two of us standing in our cycling clothes, in the middle of nowhere, leaning on our bikes, shooting the breeze, like it was an everyday occurence. Ron was kind enough to retrace his route and ride with me back into Excelsior. The scenery was spectacular, but cassettes didn't come up. 100/19.6

Friday, July 25, 2008

Fondling Frames

Just some quick errands...maybe about 7 miles at the most.
I replaced my cantilever brakes with V brakes on my cross bike and have to use a Travel Agent to keep my road brake levers working. The Travel Agent hits the rack. I took the rack off, but missed having it the other day when I was doing my grocery shopping. So I started looking at ways I could make the rack work with the Travel Agent. I raised the rack about 1/2 and inch, and inverted the support bar that hit the Travel Agent, but I still needed about another 1/2 inch and raising the rack wouldn't help. The support bar wouldn't hit the Travel Agent if the support bar connected to the frame about a 1/2 inch off the frame. Hmmmmm.
Bingo! Spacers! I went to the hardware store got a longer screw, and used two presta valve rings as spacers. I tightened the new screw to the support bar and the frame. The spacers worked perfectly and provided the room need for the Travel Agent to work freely. A 55 cent fix.

Later on I went over to a friends who just got her frame back from getting powder coated. It's a good lookin' job, and the frame looks crisp. I helped with putting the components back on the bike. I played more of a supervisory role, but did get my hands dirty. She's good with the tools and is enjoying getting to know more about working on bikes.

She loves that bike. Everything about it is going to be her. That's the way all bikes should be, just an extension of who we are...another limb.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

On The Bike

Got some grocery shopping done this morning (7 miles). The mail carrier thought my B.O.B. was "cool" 'cause she had to cram all of her groceries in a pannier and everything got squished. Did my city lakes ride tonight. Saw a couple of friends. It always feels good to get a shout out. Total 41/16.8

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Perfect Weather

Just nice to be out. Again just kept it simple, and about the miles. The greenway, UofM, river, falls, creek and lakes all in the city...I never get tired of this route. 37/17.5

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


I guess it's that time of year when I start slowing down. Hard to believe, because the weather is just so perfect, warm but not stifling. Rode out to Mendota Heights, with a just miles attitude. 37/17.3

Monday, July 21, 2008

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Summer Sunday

Rode out to Lake Minnetonka for about 40 miles with Amy. She went home and I slowed it down a little and rode another 40 in the city. Came around Lake Calhoun at the end of my ride. The Aquatennial was underway, and who pulls up to me but old Ron. We rode for about 5 miles together. Good mid summer day, and it was nice to ride with my friends. 81/17.5

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Scenery 100

Took off east for Afton and the St. Croix River valley, with 3 of us. Shortly after leaving the cafe, along East River Rd, we came up on a tri-guy. He wound up tagging along for the entire route. Nice guy and strong on the flats.
Lots of hills, great scenery and a relatively moderate pace made for a varied ride that seemed to move along quickly.
The air was thick and seemed uncomfortable under the clouds that were sitting on top of it, squishing it into a space much too small. Even the trees hung low under the same burden. We, on the other hand, were energized by the clouds cool camouflage from the heat of the sun. Excitedly, we anticipated departing the city, finding and reuniting with our long lost lust for the seemingly simple serene life in the wilds of suburbia. The paved roads wound their way through pine groves over creeks and around lakes, that admittedly would have been citified, if only 20 miles further west.
The ascents promised views of limitless vistas, and the allure of what lay where the sky met the trees.
The descents played more to our carnal nature...speed. Seeing only the next ten feet in each second that we stayed upright, it was easy to attribute the power we demonstrated to ourselves. Our willful disregard for the unseen force pulling us down to a more level plane was paid for with rising heart rates and slow circular efforts. Regaining that rush of wind, and the blur of life around us, had to wait for the next descent, and our acknowledgement that we were mere mortals relegated to a slow mundane existence, if left to our own powers.
There is beauty in the slowness of life. It became obvious and was abundant as we engaged in conversation, joking, sharing and observations. Life was not only in us, but around us. We were apart of it and it was apart of us. Passing through a stand of pines, I said out loud, "it doesn't get any better than this". No more than 1000 feet later a deer stood on the roadway looking at us. We slowed, as that seems the best way to see, hear, feel and learn. It can get better. 100/19.2

Friday, July 18, 2008

Friday Picture Ride

I rode downtown and got a little work done at the courthouse. It's great making money when I ride my bike. I guess it's the closest I'll ever get to feeling like a pro rider.

This evening I rode over to Lake Harriet and watched masts dance on the water. 22/??

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Bloomington Hills

Took the hills with Lynne nice and easy tonight. We were in agreement, dusk is the best time of the day. 36/17.1

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


Nice and easy tonight. Took my usual recovery route and added about 5 miles to it. I was just feeling a little out of it. 40/17.2

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The Cassette Story

A couple of years ago Ron and I went over to St. Paul to watch the NVGP woman's crit. Ron's married with 4 kids, and a real good guy. The women are flying by and we are just blown away by how fast they are. Ron says to me, "did you see the cassettes they're using?" I said, "man, I wasn't looking at their cassettes". From that, cassette has turned into kind of a code word, and needless to say, I've never let Ron forget about it.

Good Friend

Got to ride with a co-founder of the Hammer Hundreds tonight, which I haven't been able to do for way too long. Kept it simple, but had to mix it up a couple of times. We just stayed in the city, into Theo Wirth, along the Mississippi, up by the UofM, and along the creek to the lakes.
Along River Rd, we passed a GP guy, then he went around us, which was no big deal, but then he just stayed about 100 yards ahead of us. I was thinking why would he go around us and not keep on going. I figured he was one of those squirrelly guys that had a problem with getting passed, so we bridged up to him in about 10 seconds. He saw us coming, but couldn't get away. We just sat on his wheel making him pull, which seemed to piss him off a little. Cool! My plan worked! Then he veers off out into the road, I mean all the way over to the yellow line. This guy's a nut case, so we light 'em up a little, and leave him to his yellow line fetish.
Ron and I got to catch up on a lot of stuff, but it seemed our conversation always came back to cassettes. Summer time scenery will do that to you. 46/18.5

Recovery Monday

Just took it easy today. Stopped at a bike shop and picked up some cables, a cable hanger, and cable casings. I'm working on my Schwinn, and my cross bike. Saw a ton of people out today including Lynne. We talked for awhile and identified all the world's problems. I'm sure we'll have them solved in the next week or two.
Another beautiful day to ride, but like I said I kept easy riding along the greenway, Mississippi, creek and lakes. 37/17.1

Sunday, July 13, 2008


Just a great weekend of cycling, although I'm a little low on the miles. Just rode the lakes this morning then went over and watched the Hopkins Crit. Saw tons of friends, and some that I haven't seen for a good 5 or 6 years. Talked to another cycling friend who is going in for surgery on Tuesday. He's guardedly optimistic about his prognosis, a little scared, and a lot brave.

Wanted to get a few more miles on today so I took off and made a quick loop around Lake Minnetonka. Got back to Hopkins and caught part of the Cat 1/2/3 men. Those boys are tough and fast! 62/17.3

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Unexpected Hammer

Didn't expect a hard ride today. I emailed friends and my team to see if anyone wanted to do a moderate paced hundred miles. Amy emailed me last night and said she'd show. It wound up being just the two of us. We took off heading into the wind, which got stronger and stronger as the day progressed. We got lucky though, because the wind was blowing much harder when we turned and had it at our backs. After yesterday's soupy stormy weather, today's sky was arrogantly showing off it's blue. The cloud's white, the sky's blue and earth's green were so crisp and defined it almost hurt to look at them.
Our first turn out of the wind, at about 35 miles, pointed us north. The crosswind was welcomed relief. We endured for about 10 miles turned east at Watertown and the remainder of our route was all about wind power. We were flying low to the ground.
It felt like we'd been riding at a pretty good clip, and even Amy said it seemed like we'd managed the head wind well. I took a look at our average speed and we were at 19.8mph, and we still had some 20 miles to go and it was all tailwind. Amy didn't say anything, but I could tell she was interested in bumping that average up a couple of tenths. We really didn't change the way we were riding, but I did pay a little more attention to our current speed making sure we were up well over 20mph. 27, 28 and even 30mph was pretty common now, as we hummed along County Road 6. When Amy peeled off by her place we'd brought the average up to 20.1. Amy had a few more miles on than I did, but I was at about 90.
What a great ride! 102/20.1

Friday, July 11, 2008

Some Like It Hot

Took the day off the bike today.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Getting It Back

What a beautiful evening. Rain came through earlier in the day, but the evening was clear over head. The storm clouds were to the east as was the wind, so I went east to Mendota Heights. I even saw CJ at 13 and 55. The clouds had the anvil shape to them, and you could tell, despite their white towering beauty, someone was getting clobbered. 37/18.1 and an additional 4 miles for errands

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

What's Up with 17.8?

Different route. I went up into Theodore Wirth and then through downtown Minneapolis to the falls, along the creek and home. More miles... 37, but the same speed.Third day in a row. Hmmm 37/17.8

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


Same route, same miles, same speed. I am the rut man! 33/17.8

Monday, July 7, 2008

Still Hot and Humid

It felt good on the bike today. I took it easy, just putting on miles. 33/17.8

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Tough Women

Rode to Afton. Plenty of hills not much of a wind, but it was hot and humid. 90 degrees with a 68 degree dew point, and these gals just hung in there. OK so they did stop and run through a sprinkler once, but still. Pretty impressive! 76/16.5

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Two Listen

Out of the many voices in my head, when it comes to cycling I only hear two. One of the voices says go fast and hard, and the other says to go slow and easy. The go slow voice is soft and always ridiculed by the go fast voice. Over the years I have learned the hard way that my go slow voice is often right, but it's so hard to listen to. I haven't been feeling good all week. Monday I didn't ride at all. I listened to my go slow voice today, because it was hot, humid and windy, and I've been so tired all week.
It was a beautiful summer day and I was riding solo. I took a southerly course not sure of where I'd go, but wanted to be out in some rural landscapes again. The wind was waltzing with wheat fields, turning and dipping the wheat to showoff it's delicate body while witnessing it's core strength. The wheat danced with the wind in serpentine like patterns, flashing ever so many shades of green in an attempt to attract it's next partner.
Some birds were fighting against the wind, but the wiser used it effortlessly to stay motionless in mid air. Others played games of tag dodging into broken out barn windows to avoid being caught by their pursuer.
My attempt to use the wind to my advantage was foiled by fatigue. When I finally turned and had a tail wind my speed increased, but all I could muster today was 96/18.8.


Worked on my Schwinn today, and after riding it tonight, I'm not done.
Had lunch with my daughter, and rode to meet her there.
Rode with Lynne to the fireworks in Downtown Minneapolis. It was dark on the way home, but we had a blast, even though my chain came off a couple of times. I think I had the tension too tight. 25/??

Thursday, July 3, 2008

No Title

A perfect Summer evening. I rode slow and without purpose. Delightful! 33/15.8

I think I need some new cleats.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Keep Riding

I'm still tired. I just don't have the zip or pep, in my legs, that I'd like. I'm going to have to take it easy for another couple of weeks, I guess. 38/16.9 and an additional 4 miles doing some errands.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008


Ahhhh! It's amazing what 12 hours of sleep can do. 39/18.2