Sunday, August 23, 2009

Bicycling is all I can think of!

I'm on ebay half the weekend looking at used touring bikes, and also craigslist and the new sites looking for bargains. I'm riding extra to make up miles, took the Klein out for 35 today to Oveido back thru UCF and Blanchard trail. Almost bought a 58cm Fuji touring bike, coming with full Arkel grand touring panniers front and back, alone worth $500... but the 58 is too big I'm sure and checking the guy's web site out he's touring south america and busting spokes, who knows what else, by the end of the tour the thing may be shot anyway I don't want to start off with repairs and the panniers are heavy from all the reports. Back on the Bilenky tomorrow, looking forward to my daily to downtown and back, with a little extra. Julie is having a heck of a time, look at a past post to find her blog... it's a difficult adjustment I'm just happy she's only in Delhi at the college for 9 months not over in Africa in the peace corps for 2 years... she's really homesick and it's a strange setup. She's going to come home for Christmas break the girls are all looking forward to that(so am I, though nobody does much with me anymore). Looks like I am going to have a tour bike by Thanksgiving so planning that again... I'm seriously leaning toward 26" wheels for the durability and off road capability, the time I cut through the Ocala forest for 12 miles or so it was incredible and I'd like to go up there to Salt Springs again it's only 90 miles. Getting to bed early to start off Monday morning fresh and strong... last week of August already!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

dog days rounding back into shape

So last weekend I did the birthday 54 ride... today I was able to do a 2 hour loop 31 out to Oviedo and back by the Cady Way/Cross Seminole trail going out, and cutting through winter springs / tuskawilla to eagle to dodd to howell branch back to the trail. Wasn't real strong but pretty solid. Burly racer type zipped past me right before the 436 bridge (biggest hill around)... I let him go but decided on my own to see what I had left getting up the hill.. and caught the dude he was showing off and got gassed climbing up the little thing... so I returned the zip past and watched him try, then fade in the rear view. I am not a racer but at 54 it's nice once in a while to go fast for a while.

Our weather is great, it's hot and humid normal, but we've had lots of cloud cover lately so the sun hasn't been so strong. I'm starting to plan a tour (shsshhh maybe 2) before the year is out, but have pretty well decided I need a sturdier bike for self-contained touring. Each of the past 2 years on the way home I've told myself this is the last loaded tour for the Bilenky, let's keep it light for commuting and overnight or credit card tours and get something more durable, so, even in this economy (how many times have we heard that this year) I'm looking at the mass production standards Surly/Kona/Trek/Cannondale, and the Thorn/Bilenky/BruceGordon/Koga types and having a heck of a time comparing geometries and trying to make a selection. I've been looking onine for used, but that game has gotten pricy and sight unseen it's a lot of dough to put out on trust. Today I'm leaning toward the Surly Long Haul Trucker at $1000 it looks like it will work fine. I really want drop bars and all XT, not convinced steel frame vs heat treated steel vs aluminum that's probably the last choice. I love the steel feel and ride, but people swear by the aluminum ride when loaded...honestly with padded bars, gloves, and a sprung brooks saddle I think the trade off may be worth it. Appreciate any help if you have some experience.

Otherwise, back to tour planning... if I HAVE TO... I'll do a quickie overnight to Hontoon Island for Thanksgiving weekend, and stay in the cabin to minimize pack gear.

Ok well alls well with Julie if you want her update go to all is going great for her this week shes started classes, loves the school and her hostel warden and the girls she's met so far and Tuesday is moving into the Hostel at Miranda House.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Back to normal in Orlando

It's been a week, and things are getting back to normal with the sleep cycle, rounding back into shape at work, thrilling to death having the bike ride in and out from work. Took a ride on the bus downtown yesterday (Sat) to pick up the Klein rode it home it was hot so not too much detour... then took the Bilenky over to Whole Foods to stock up on muesli and get in a few more miles. Other than cleaning the pool and a little yardwork got a nice nap and did some reading, relaxed.

Sunday I got the pool clean and did some yardwork, then went out for a 2 hour ride on the Klein, thought I'd make up for some of the miles I missed in July. But, I am so not in shape for that... it was hot, maybe 95 and sunny, and I went out about 30 mins before I was out of gas and had to decide to push on through it til the second wind came, or hydrate w some cold gatorade and ease it back home with a good hour ride in... and I pulled back, which I've been doing since I really hurt myself last summer on the Crystal River tour ride going to far in the heat hurting my knee for a couple months recovery and suffering like... well... I was eating motrin by the handful, like popcorn, and it still hurt like hell... most of the 85 miles home I pedaled with one leg... but I made it and didn't call for a pickup. Hopefully I learned my lesson and don't get in that shape again. So I cruised back home in easy fashion still 18 miles in 77 mins not too bad for a Sunday ride next weekend I'll go for 90 mins and see how it works out.

I messed up giving all those people in India my cards, the email link on my web page was hosed... so I corrected that and during the next week will email everyone over there I got an email address from and also try to look into charitable organizations to help some of those folks out, they are so good of people.

So the pool is clean and after my ride I had a nice cooling dip in there... attached a pic Marian has planted flowers all around the pool it is looking nice and colorful and a great place to hang out on a lazy Sunday afternoon.