I could be getting more out of this internet-blogging-contraption, so I will. I’ll not just write about my bike, but expand into just talking about where I’m at and what I’m working on.
I’d like more good habits. Since I quit drinking a few months ago, I can focus on making good habits. Eating better, sleeping enough, taking care of myself, and so on. I eat like a rabbit and I love that! Sleep is a challenge with the toddler and the newborn – but I’ve done some things to aid that, namely cutting back my caffeine intake. From coffee to tea. I love good coffee in the morning but there are some really good teas out there that I’ve been getting into, and it makes me feel good instead of jittery and zonked.
The gear I’d really like to shift into is the simplest one. What I mean is - I have too many things. I’m disorganized at times because of clutter and so forth. I am at times overstimulated. Other times I have felt that I have too much to do and too little time. Sometimes my goals are lofty, perfectionist, and maybe even unattainable.
I’d really like to be in the calm, peaceful, focused gear. I’m shifting my focus from happiness to contentment. I think I’ll start by purging some of my possessions that I no longer need or want. My front and back porch have become crowded, messy, cluttered storage areas. The closets in my house are wrecked, and I won’t even discuss the shelves, cabinets, etc. that so often cause me stress.
I will also find a simple ten or fifteen minutes for yoga.
Resolve is one of my favorite words. I resolve to educate myself some more about zen, and maybe some feng-shui. Then I’ll get moving with an attainable time-oriented goal. By the end of the day, I will have resolved one of my cluttered spaces.
Mike Mega out.
I went out for a spin last night at about 11:30. Even though it’s been raining and cold for four days straight, I found myself just really needing to cruise. It wasn’t too windy. I love having downtown practically to myself, and the trail is all mine.
I threw my fenders on before I left – they’re cracked and bent. So I’m torn between searching out some slick new awesome ones, and making due with what I’ve got. They’re hard plastic and now held together with zip ties and other implements. The rear one features a metal chopstick on the underside to prevent it dragging on the wheel…
And here’s the other thing – I miss my odometer. I really like to know how fast I’m going and how long my trip has been. So I think I’ll spend some time troubleshooting that thing but in the meantime – no stress.
I just rode for about an hour with my headphones on. The music stopped playing suddenly, so I just listened to the sound of my tires buzzing on the wet pavement and rain hitting the ground. The world was making music with or without me and once I stopped and noticed, I was glad to receive such a gift.
Life is simple. I think I’ll keep it that way. I strive to be more accepting of life as it comes at me. There’s no need to get my hands on every little thing and change everything and so on – just take it as it comes. Accept life on life’s terms and move on. And keep a smile inside, and slow down.
Mike Mega out.
At least I think so. I flipped the headset back over. So happy again! Didn’t realize that I had forgotten how nice it is to be a big comfortable. Just enjoying myself on my bike is so easy. All I have to do is less. It’s just as fast and smooth and yada yada – but now I feel good too.
But now my odometer doesn’t give my speed or count miles for some reason. I’m not really that pissed. I might take it off, I might figure it out…
I got this amazing kid’s bike seat that lets my two-year-old ride right between my knees with my arms hugged around him. Good idea! We took a cruise the other day. So fun! The seat unhitches from a permanent bar under what I call the goose. He sits right between my knees and so we get to point stuff out together like, “duck,” “car,” “bike,” and “house.” He loves it. I love it.
Here are some pictures I took of my bike today on a short and very very enjoyable ride. Taken especially for this blog:
Do less = enjoy it more.
I bought a bike for the right reasons - fun, practicality, exercise, driving sucks, the outdoors, etc. So how did I get so confused?
Do I really want a road bike? I like flying fast as hell but why fork over a grand just to join some cool-guy club? If I get another bike, (besides a winter bike,) I just want about 8 or 10 gears and a good fit. I think I’m just gonna stop worrying about everything except having a whole bunch of fun. I’ll keep my odometer showing the clock.
From now on, I’m gonna ride it on my terms. I’m a complete and total bike noob and I like it this way.
And I won’t go back to the place I bought my bike, The Bike Guy. The new place is waaaay better first of all, and secondly I don’t appreciate how they’ve treated me time and time again.
Still happy with the smaller cassette. The headset’s still inverted and I like it a lot more. It helps the bike “fit” better since it’s a bit too small thanks to the bike shop experts. I bought an attachable seat for my 2-year-old that will sit him between my knees. It should be here tomorrow so I hope the weather stays nice, he’s going to LOVE it as much as I do.
Between the biking and the skateboarding, my legs are ripped! Being on the bike has made me be at least a little more conscious of my health as well. I eat more raw fruits and vegetables. I eat a lot less meat, especially red meat. I drink more water and watch the salt and sugar. Heck, I even have a cup of tea in the afternoons now instead of a couple coffees.
Anyways… can’t wait to ride some more tomorrow.
A lot of the snow is still hanging around out there! Let’s hope today really is the last cold day. It’s 20 F in April… I’m hungry for riding time. I’ve taken advantage of the nice days we have had – I got a 20 mile ride on Saturday.
I reeeeally want a road bike. I love this hybrid but it’s a 30-pound bicycle with a lot more emphasis on comfort than speed… I’ve been doing some preliminary shopping around, research, and reading up on bike-nerd stuff like pedalling form. Seriously, what’s happened to me?
I ordered a new cassette with fewer teeth. Yeah, I have a lot of bike-noob’s misconceptions, but still, I never used the largest cog in back, so why wouldn’t I. I downloaded a metronome on my “phone” so I can see what 90 rpm is really like. I’ve been powering through my highest gears and what I should be doing is pedalling faster in a lower gear.
P.S. Crossed the 500-mark. (I know, big deal, right?) Well, considering I started in October (in northern Minnesota…), I’m doing okay. I just love to ride the damn thing.
Next spring, I’d like either an Allez or a Secteur. Can’t quite justify splurging on a sick bike until this one’s at least hit the 2,000 mark. But I’d take almost anything that fits if I could get a good deal on it. I can’t wait to do laps around the lake and maybe take a nice long 100+ mile ride. I’m thinking of the hybrid as sort of a training bike? When the bike is 14 pounds lighter with tires half as wide and my body’s not-so-much forcing a sail into the wind, I think taking Lakers will be a breeze. When I see those guys flyin’ on those bikes it makes me so excited. Ah, someday…
I think my next post will be about making my own straps for my pedals.
I rode them ~250 miles and suffered about four punctured tubes, maybe five. They all happened post-120miles… Next year, here’s what I’ll do differently:
1.) Get my hands on a cheap mountain bike. I’ll just make a Snow Bike next year with less gears (to clean), and wider rims for wider tires.
2.) Choose a flat-headed Allen screw. The ‘X’ was sharp enough to puncture the protective tape at one point.
3.) Go a bit shorter. The screws were so long that the started to back up, or unscrew themselves up into the tire.
4.) Every center tread?? Fun experiment, but… lesson learned. I won’t skimp on the # of studs, but I’ll add put more on the sides, and less in the center.
I cut an old pair of jeans into long strips and used trusty ol’ Shoe Goo to glue the strips over the Gorilla Tape (which is over the screws). Now the inner tube should be comfortable and well protected (not to mention stylish and casual). I didn’t skimp on the Goo neither, I figured that stuff is pretty tough as it is so cake it on there. I noticed some extra weight to the tire when I was done. I used some old skate wheels to prop it open to dry. A golfball would also work well but I don’t golf, I skate.
I hope those cheap little inner tube patches work because that’s how I fixed the tube from last night. In the future I might also try some kind of weird chemical in my tires to prevent flats but I don’t know anything about that yet. I did buzz a quick lap around the back yard with success to briefly check that it was okay. I think I need to true these wheels soon.
Then I noticed on my right chainstay, (the bar that connects your back wheel to your pedal,) that there were several nicks and light scratches probably from the chain smacking it when I hit bumps, so I used an inner tube I exploded the other day (installed it very wrong, BOOM!, forgot to mention that little detail ) and made a badass bandage out of it! It wraps over itself on the left then just zip-tied it on the right, careful not to get in the way of any moving parts, then I trimmed the ziptie of course.
Looks awesome and hella durable. I just cut the old inner tube into a nice long narrow strip. Maybe later I’ll figure out a way to tie it without the ziptie. My main concern right now is obviously my new beasty frankentire death machines and how they’ll treat my inner tubes.
My questions right now are: Will the tubes stay protected? Do they need to be lower than the lowest recommended air pressure (50 psi)? Or do I need to trim the studs a bit shorter - they stick out 1/8 inch (3mm)?
If the front tube pops, I’ll goo the denim in there too. I hope this works and I can maybe even use them again next year. I better get this figured out ASAP though - tomorrow’s the first day of spring semester. I can’t wait to have this squared away. Gosh, I’m obsessed with my bike and I can’t wait to get back out on the ice. Or maybe this bike, these tires (700 x 35c) just aren’t supposed to do what I want and I should just stick primarily to commuting. If so, I haven’t learned my lesson yet.
Wish me luck. Peace. Mike Mega out.