03.04.00 - Saturday
This was a tough out-and-back to Waterton Canyon, then up the canyon
(a fairly rough crushed stone trail - but not technical) and back.
This ride was made especially tough by the mostly downhill outbound section
and the therefore mostly uphill return. My average was respectable
until I had to climb for 8 miles or so to get home.
03.06.00 - Monday
03.07.00 - Tuesday
My standard commute home from work. I was lucky on this ride, since Denver
had some really scary/weird weather at about 3:00, which had cleared away
by the time I got on my bike at about 4:15. At first I thought I'd overdressed
because the sun had come out. By the time I got home, the sun was setting,
it had become overcast again, and I was pretty chilly. Great ride, though.
I actually made 16.2mph average for the Platte section of the ride. However,
my average always drops when I leave this section for neighborhood/city streets.
03.08.00 - Wednesday
03.09.00 - Thursday
Wow! 36 degrees with a breeze, making the wind-chill 20 degrees or so. Again
I barely missed a snowstorm that dumped and then moved on. The streets were dry by
the time I headed out. I feel lucky. It's amazing (again) the difference my
gym workouts have made. If you cycle you owe it to yourself to try weight
training. You'll be amazed. I promise!
I stayed fairly comfortable in the following clothing (linked to appropriate online stores).
Note: I'm not trying to sell you anything here, just thought it would be convenient
if you are interested in any of the gear mentioned. I would have linked to EMS, but
their site uses frames
Measured my ketone level tonight, and it was sky high! Highest ever. It's got
to be the additional aerobic exercise of this week. Had pizza tonite, though,
so it will be interesting to measure in the morning. Also, tomorrow will be
a "cheat" day, since we'll have lunch brought in, and then MB and I are going
out for Mexican with friends.
03.11.00 - Saturday
Hopped on the scales this morning a bit apprehensively, and nearly fell over
when I saw the weight. Up 3.5 pounds? It's gotta be water?!? I mean, this
has been one of my busiest weeks, workout-wise. So, Thurdsay night I allowed
myself pizza. Then yesterday (Friday), I knew the day was shot because of a happy
hour for a departing coworker and a Mexican dinner planned with friends. So,
I relaxed and lots of beer and carbs (pizza again for lunch, then Guiness at the happy
hour, and then tamales, rice and beans for supper).
Needless to say, I need to get serious about staying "pure" on the Atkins diet.
Last time I did so, I lost about 4 pounds in 5 or 6 days. That was just last week, so
I wonder if it was indeed water weight lost? Check the chart - that's
a pretty ugly 'W' shape on there if you ask me.
03.12.00 - Sunday
15.9 mph overall, with a 10-mile Time Trial of 16.2
Found it hard to get motivated today. I had planned an epic trip up to Red Rocks
and back, but the weather predictions turned out to be wrong. It was supposed to
be in the 60's and sunny, but turned out to be in the 40's and mostly cloudy. For
some reason, it felt particularly cold out (maybe higher humidity?).
Anyway, finally headed out at around 3:00 with the intention of doing a fairly long
ride up the canal trail, maybe to Cherry Creek reservoir. However, I underdressed
a bit, so a leisurely, long ride was out of the question. I decided instead to
do a 15-mile time trial, which would be intense enough to keep me warm, and to also
be a good workout. I did great while reaching my 7.5-mile turnaround, but about 2.5
miles later, I was dead. So, I called it a 10-mile TT instead. My time was 36:59,
giving me a decent average of 16.2mph, which ain't bad considering the surface, frequent
slowdowns for street crossings and pedestrians, and wind (I always have an excuse).
I found that after the TT, I rested for a minute or so, then sped back up with ease.
My overall speed was 15.9mph.
I'm wondering if I'm overtrained.
03.13.00 - Monday
Today I wore an older pair of pants to work, that are a size smaller than what I
was wearing before starting the diet/fitness program. Even this smaller pair was baggy. Nice.
Did a two-hour session at the gym. LifeCycle for 20 minutes, followed by workout
shown above, with an extra set of squats and leg presses. Darn tired afterwards.
I came darn close to hurting my back tonight. The extra leg exercises probably
did the trick on that front. I've been pushing pretty hard lately. Treated it with
TLC (but no stress-out), aspirin, and a very hot shower.
I also tweaked my knees a bit (especially the right), by jumping up to 205 on
the leg extension for my middle set, and ignoring some knee discomfort. I reduced
to 175 for the last set.
03.14.00 - Tuesday
??.? mph overall, with a 10-mile Time Trial of 16.6
My back was the tiniest bit stiff today, but nothing to be concerned about.
I feel darn lucky about that. My knees were basically fine, too.
A bit of a side-tail wind today, but not the whole way. The wind shifted quite
a bit during the ride, so I had wind in my face sometimes. However the majority
of it was side-tail, so I got a pretty good average. Somehow, my computer got
reset at some point, so I don't have a reliable overall average. I suspect around
15.0mph, since the last portion of the ride was a bit windy (to my disadvantage).
I was very tired today all day. I yawned a lot, and didn't think very clearly.
I'm pretty certain I'm overtrained. I'm going to take tomorrow off. MB suggested
that maybe I should start taking in some carbs, but I sure don't want to stop my
weight loss progress, which seems to be back on track lately
(see the chart).
03.15, 03.16 - Wednesday, Thursday
Took these days off. I needed it! Had Pizza on Wednesday during the big snowstorm.
03.17.00 - Friday
??.? mph overall
I started this ride with a friendly guy on a mountain bike. I have passed this
guy pretty much every commute home this year. Today, I decided to
take it easy for the first part of the ride, and just hang back with him
and chat a while. He turned off a little more than halfway thru the ride
and I picked up the pace significantly after that. I had a lot of energy
after the "warm-up" part of the ride.
Again, we had a bit of a tail-side wind today. Got cheated on the weather though.
It was supposed to be 55° and sunny, but turned out to be more like 45° with no
sun at all. Pretty darn chilly when it comes down to it. I was comfortable in
mid-weight tights, one of my polartech zip-T's, my Performance wind/rain jacket and
shoe covers (my toes did get cold, though).
03.18.00 - Saturday
03.19.00 - Sunday
15.1 mph overall
Route:C470->Platte River->Bear Creek->C470->Platte River->P.R. Bar & Grill
My intentions were good at the beginning of this ride - not to do a long one,
because my energy was low, but to do a 20-miler that is one of my faves.
However, I met up with a guy early on the rides who was pretty friendly and
interested in riding together. This guy had only been riding road for about three
weeks, but must have been very fit - he was fairly fast and was out for miles.
I felt pretty good as we reached my usual turnoff for my intended ride, so I continued
on with him to the Bear Creek turnoff. I'd never done this trail (when I refer to bike
trails, many of them are paved - all on this ride were paved) before, and it was
kind of fun. However, I started getting a bit tired around the 20-mile point, and
there was easily 15-20 to go after this.
After a bit of confusion about how to get back onto the C470 trail from Bear Creek,
we went a couple more miles on C470 (the highway, not the trail) to reach the C470 trail. The
C470 trail is notorious for hills and exposure to wind. It lived up to its reputation. Let's
just say that my riding partner started pulling away from me little by little,
and once we joined up with an even faster guy, I no longer bothered to keep up.
By the time we reached the Platte trail again, I was beat. From this
intersection, it's nothing but hardcore uphill, and I didn't have it in me. So I turned
north on the Platte again. I rode a few miles, feeling really broken down. Everything hurt.
I was out of water, and almost out of energy. I rode past the Platte River Bar &
Grille, then rode back to it. I parked my bike outside, called MB to invite her to a
carbo-laden dinner, and went in an ordered a beer. It was about the best beer I've ever tasted.
I suspect the low-carb thing makes me hit the wall at about 30 miles. You may remember reading
about my out and back trip to Waterton Canyon. That was just over 30 miles,
and by the time I got back, I was fried. Even though I brought carbs (granola bars) on these trips
I suspect that a lack of glycogen in my muscles catches up with me at around 30 miles. I'm
probably going to start back on normal carbs in mid-April in order to let me get in more miles
more comfortably. I must admit that at this point I'm pretty nervous about TOSRV given that
I can't seem to last more than 30 miles comfortably. I really hope it's my Atkins diet that's
causing the trouble.
I had what I guess you'd call a saddle-sore for the first time ever after this ride. It wasn't
too painful, but a noticable sore patch in my crotch through the next day. Nice.
03.21.00 - Tuesday
03.23.00 - Thursday
Today I did free-weight squats (in a smith machine) for the first time since high-school.
I started with an empty bar to practice, then put a 25 on each side. Did ten
reps. I then put another 25 on each side. Ten more reps. Then 25 more. Did one rep.
Ow, Damn! Took the extra 25s off, and tried for ten more. Did one rep and I felt like I'd
charlie-horsed every muscle in both thighs. Stopped there. Finished my workout OK, but
was a little worried about what I'd done to my legs. I took a bunch of aspirin before bed.
03.24.00 - Friday
14.1 mph overall (15.1 mph 10-mile time trial)
My standard commute home from work, again. I was pretty fried from my squat
experience yesterday, but I didn't want to waste what was supposed to be a nice
day, especially given that I'd missed my earlier ride this week due to snow.
But my sore legs weren't the worst of it. I was rewarded for my
efforts with a stiff headwind all the way home.
03.25.00, 03.26.00 - Saturday, Sunday>
Crappy Weather - Didn't do crap. Well, I did go for a long walk with MB and Jake
on Sunday, but it wasn't a "workout".
03.27.00 - Monday
15.6 mph overall (18.2 mph 10-mile time trial)
Standard commute home from work, this time with a great tailwind. Made great
time, and overall, a nice ride.
03.28.00 - Tuesday
I've added Smith-machine squats to my workout. Really burns me up. I feel it the
next day, and the next. People are starting to ask "have you lost some weight?".
That's kinda nice.
03.31.00 - Friday
04.02.00 - Sunday
16.4 mph overall
This was meant to be my standard 20-mile "Platte River Loop" ride. However, only in
Colorado can you start a ride when it's sunny, feeling as though you've overdressed,
and within 45 minutes ride through freezing rain, rain, driving rain, hail, a thunderstorm,
and snow. This ride was cut short during the thunderstorm, about 5 minutes before it started
snowing like crazy. Part of the ride (about 6 miles) was spent riding into a 20-40mph wind,
so I'm kinda proud of the average :-).
I'm darn glad I'd put baggies on my feet, because I got soaking wet. But here's another
testament to technical clothing - I never got cold or felt overwarm. The biggest problem
I had was with my sunglasses fogging up. They were pretty much useless after a while.
04.03.00 - Monday
I was running a bit late, and so I thought I'd try HIT (High-intensity Training) this
time. HIT is basically all about exercise to failure. You pick a weight for which you know
you'll only be able to complete 8-12 reps, with the last reps taking all you have to complete.
Complete intensity is the key. The idea is that you need to exhaust your muscles, and
heavy weight at one set is one way to do it. The reps are done very slowly. Needless to say
I did everything on machines, since I don't have a spotter.
04.04.00 - Tuesday
17.6 mph on "time-trial" section. Computer didn't capture remainder of ride.
An absolutely beautiful ride home in 70-degree weather. A nice tailwind added
to the experience. The only bummer (and this is pretty much a constant) is the gnats
or fruit flies that hover in bunches every few hundred yards or so. Riding thru them
feels like riding through rice thrown at a wedding. Pretty gross. They usually
just bounce off, but occasionally they'll get in my sunglasses and hair.
04.05.00 - Wednesday
16.1 mph on "time-trial" section. Computer didn't capture remainder of ride.
Another nice ride in pretty nice weather. I started with a side/tailwind, which
later converted to a headwind.
04.07.00 - Friday
16.7 mph on "time-trial" section. I've stopped bothering with timing the whole ride.
Chilly today -- felt a bit underdressed. But a nice ride, nonetheless. Wind was variable,
but the day off yesterday left me feeling pretty strong today, so a good average was obtained.
Creaking in my crank was very bad, so I dropped by the bike shop to have one of the guys
look at it. He tightened up the crank bolts a bit, but on the ride home, the creaking continued.
This is to be a carb-loaded weekend. It's my "birthday weekend" (a week early because of
the trip to Boston next week). Anyway, I'm guaranteed to eat carbs all weekend, so I had
pizza at lunch today, and a granola bar before the ride.
04.08.00 - Saturday
Took my CX bike to the shop to have a thorough BB re-do, and rode to the gym on my mountain bike,
which turned out to be a lot of fun. It had been months since I last rode my MTB, and it
was a real kick. After the workout, I rode on some of the singletrack in the park near our house,
and did great. It's amazing what some working out will do for your bike handling. I tried some
things that I was always chicken to do, and cleaned everything. Now I'm looking forward to more.
My workout was typical except I backed off to one set of leg presses, curls, and extensions. I
feel the need to cut back a little there, since I'm stepping up my riding a bit.
04.09.00 - Sunday
32 timed miles, 35 overall
Of timed miles, 22 were on packed dirt/gravel, and 10 on pavement.
16.3 mph on timed section.
This is my first seriously carbo-fueled ride of the season, and I could really tell the difference!
The ride was high-intensity the whole way, and while 16.3 might not sound like much, you have to consider
the surface of the majority of the ride. I'm also obviously still riding my semi-knobbies around.
Anyway, I pushed hard the whole time, and stayed pretty comfortable until the very end. I pushed even
harder at the end, to get my average up, and I'd run out of water, so I was kinda parched by the time
I was done. I stopped at the rec center to get some water, and pedaled home easily.
I'm pretty sure my weekend rides will be carbo-fueled now, especially with TOSRV right around the
corner. I need to get in at least one long ride (50-60 miles or so) before then, and I can't do that
on no carbs.
04.10.00 - Sunday
04.12.00 - Wednesday
Did this ride with John, another cyclist I befriended on morning bus rides. He introduced me
to another route home, which has lots of options for more distance than the Platte trail offers.
This route has the disadvantage of forcing a lot of stops and slowdowns over a good portion of its
route. However, the scenery is nice, and there aren't as many bugs as there are on the Platte trail.
04.13.00 - Thursday
22 miles, plus weight training
Did the Cherry Creek trail again, but with a little variation that gave me a touch more distance.
I also worked out tonite, which is the first time I've combined a riding day with a workout day. I
did so because of the upcoming trip to Boston, where I'm pretty sure I won't get in any real exercise.
04.14.00 - 04.18.00 - In Boston, no workouts
04.19.00 - Wednesday
Was off work, but at home, so I got in a long, intense workout to make up for lost time. I warmed
up with a 20 minute LifeCycle session, rather than the 10 minute ones I'd been doing.
04.20.00 - Thursday
16.4 mph on "time-trial" section, which actually extended a few miles further than usual. Moderate headwinds.
04.22.00 - Saturday
Another intense session. My intention was to ride today, but the weather didn't cooperate. I'm bummed
that my riding seems to be falling off. I hope to get in 500 miles before TOSRV. I'm at about 350 right now.
04.25.00 - Tuesday
Took Cherry Creek trail to High Line trail and stayed on High Line all the way home, meaning I also rode
the twisty gravel parts. This makes for a great ride, since the last bit on gravel adds a lot of miles because
of all the turns that the trail makes. Six linear miles becomes 12 miles on the High Line trail. My average
was basically meaningless, because of slowdowns (as have all my Cherry Creek rides), but for the record it
was 15.4. I probably averaged around 17 on the gravel part of the HLC trail.
04.26.00 - Wednesday
04.27.00 - Thursday
Took Cherry Creek trail to High Line trail - a similar trip to 04.25, but extended for a little more
distance. This trip was marred by two flats (from the same thorn). You gotta remember to check your
tires when you flat, and remove the reason for the flat, dummy!
04.29.00 - Saturday
Did my usual 20-mile C470 loop with the following changes - climbed the hill at Chatfield dam, and goofed around
up there for a while (riding), returned to the trail, then took the High Line back from Broadway, and extended
the trip by taking a later "exit" (near Susan & Dave's). Did you notice I stopped worrying so much about my
averages? There's a reason: I tend to get down on myself about my averages, when in reality there's not a lot
I can do about low averages in many cases. On my rides lately, I have to stop slow down a lot, which
artificially lowers the average. In uninterrupted stretches, I still move pretty fast.
04.30.00 - Sunday
05.01.00 - Monday
229 lbs. (woohoo!)
Commute home. Cherry Creek to HLC, Colorado to Holly, Holly to Orchard, etc. Uneventful ride. I do
notice that my hill-climbing is better lately. That's exciting. I'll need that during the 15-mile
hilly stretch at TOSRV.
05.03.00 - Wednesday
231 lbs. (crap :-( )
Kind of a bummer of a day. First, I weighed in heavy - up two pounds from a couple of days
ago (I know not to worry too much, but it still sucks). Second, the hot water heater's
pilot had gone out. MB and I couldn't light it, so we had to call someone in. I was
elected to stay home and wait for the repairman, who was due to come between
1:00 and 3:00 (a likely story). This threw a wrench in my plans to have an
"epic" ride home from work (since I didn't go to work).
However, I did get the bright idea to do a morning ride and get back by 1:00. I got out
the door late (around 9:30), so I was already pushing it. My intention was to do a big loop:
C470 to the Platte Trail, the Platte all the way downtown, where I'd cross onto the Cherry Creek
trail, Cherry Creek to High Line, and home with options to extend. The minimum ride would be about
Well, my little dark cloud didn't let me down. About halfway thru the ride I hit a patch of
broken glass, which sliced my rear tire just a little too much. At the time I thought it was
rideable, so I fixed the flat and kept going. My timing was very tight at this point, having
stopped a couple of times along the way to consult maps, clear the sweat from my helmet, etc.
About 5 miles later I flatted again. The tire allowed another puncture in the tube, right
where the tire was damaged before.
I patched it, but now I'd wasted a total of about 15-20 minutes fixing flats when I was already low
on time. It was noon, and I didn't trust my patch to hold again, even though I'd shored up the tire
with the cellophane from a Clif bar. I punted and called MB's parents to come and get me so I
wouldn't miss the water heater guy. Of course, the water heater guy didn't show up until 4:00, so
I could have probably limped home. But I didn't know that at the time. Sigh...
The final insult was when I had MB measure me in the evening. My weight was up a little today,
as I mentioned, but I expected with all my extra riding, I'd lost a little size. But noooo - Up a little in all
important measurements, which really bummed me out. This after all the extra miles I've
been putting in. I mean it's only a half inch here and there, and could be measurement inaccuracy, but it
still bothers me. I really need to get a BFI scale. They aren't accurate, but they're supposedly
precise as long as you use them under the same conditions every day. I don't care what the measurement
is, so much as I care that I can measure progress accurately!
I hope to get a long ride in tomorrow, but then I've got to pack my cross bike for mailing on Friday.
The rest of my rides before TOSRV will have to be on my mountain bike, which doesn't really excite me much.