Posted by: Travis | September 24, 2009

General update time!

(“General Update” *military solute* – for those of you that watch ‘How I Met Your Mother’, you know what I’m talking about. For those of you that don’t, you should. It’s a great, funny, light hearted sitcom with great characters, that for my money is a much better use of my time than a bunch of the other crap that’s on tv. Monday nights, set the DVR, now you know.)

Okay, lots of little things today that all seem unrelated, so let’s just dive in, shall we?

Last night I had a bike fit session with Mark Rodamaker, a guy in my cycling club that has a few masters world championship titles (from the track) to his name. Really nice, humble guy. After picking his brain a little bit, he was telling me about how his last race of the season is going to be a track race in Sydney, Australia. Okay, cool. But after a few minutes I realized that he was talking about another world’s title. Pretty awesome. Anyway, we set the bike up on the trainer, he watched me pedal for a minute, then we started working our way around the contact points on the bike, taking measurements and dialing things in, starting with the cleat position on my shoes. Next we did seat height, then seat fore-aft, and finally ended up at the handlebars. Every single thing was a long way from where it should have been. There were several times where he had to double check measurements because he couldn’t believe the numbers he was getting. Several times he mentioned that he couldn’t believe I was even able to pedal my bike at race speed for very long with such a poor bike fit.

Well, considering that when I bought my bike, the salesman had me sit on it while he held up the bike, and only adjusted saddle height, I have to admit that I’m not really that surprised. At one point I remember asking ‘don’t you guys need to fit me to the bike’ to which the salesman responded, ‘yeah man, I just did’. I had a feeling that something wasn’t right, but figured that as I adjusted things that didn’t feel right over time, I had to be getting close, right? No. I should have had this done a long time ago, but c’est la vie. It’s done now. I’m excited to get out and try the new fit. I’m sure it will be weird at first, but hopefully over the course of an hour or so, it will start to feel better. Having this done a few days before riding a century probably wasn’t the best idea, but I’m glad I finally got it done.

The power meter I ordered last week should be coming in today or tomorrow. I’m really looking forward to getting it in, putting it on the bike, getting out and collecting data, and then using some analysis software to really geek out. I hope it will give me a much better idea of how my training is going and tracking my progress. Right now I feel like I’m just taking shots in the dark. I’m having it delivered to my office because I don’t want something like that sitting on our door step (and our delivery guy has proven himself to be pretty inept at doing his job), so every time I hear an engine that sounds like a big delivery truck, or the doorbell rings, I get all excited like a kid on Christmas eve. It’s pretty pathetic.

I’ll be picking up our 3rd (or is it the  4th?) CSA box today on my way home from work. I can’t believe we didn’t jump in on this sooner. We pay around $20 a week and pick up a huge box of fresh produce every week just a few blocks from our apartment. Not only are we helping to support local agriculture, and ensuring that we eat local/organic/seasonal produce, but we are cooking with ingredients and cooking dishes that we otherwise wouldn’t be cooking with. It takes us about 4 or 5 meals to really incorporate all the produce we get in one week’s box, so what we get really drives our weekly menu. I highly recommend getting involved in a CSA program if you like to cook and have one in your area.

Thankfully, we’ve got a pretty mellow upcoming weekend planned. There’s a French pastry called a macaron (different from a macaroon) that I tried at Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bakery in the spring and really liked. There’s a place nearby called Pamplemousse that makes 35 flavors that they rotate in and out. So I think we may stop by, see how they are, and then Rachel is going to try her hand at making them using a recipe she found online. I’ve got a good feeling about this. Meanwhile, I think I’m going to try making some rice cakes that are made famous by the Garmin-Slipstream cycling team as on the bike food in place of power bars and clif bars. The base version has sushi rice, scrambled eggs, and chopped bacon, then you can go sweet (with peanut butter,  honey and even add some nutella if you really want to go for it) or savory (soy sauce or balsamic vinegar) with the ingredients. Anyway, they are supposed to be delicious, so I figure I may bake some up and then take them with me on the century on Sunday. After you’ve been on the bike for a few hours and you’re exhausted, sometimes energy bars are just disgusting, but these are supposed to be great. Maybe I’ll pack a few extra so that when everyone else is chowing down on their gross clif bars at a rest stop, I can bust out some delicious rice cakes. Our apartment is also in dire need of some cleaning, so that will likely be happening too.

It’s looking like Rachel and I will be going back to Texas around Christmas time. One of my roommates from college, Ben, is getting married in San Antonio a few days before Christmas, so we’ll be going for that, and then hanging out in Houston for a few days around Christmas time.

That’s about it for now. If it isn’t too cold Sunday morning, (and as long as the rice cakes aren’t so good that I decide to bring all of them) I should be able to sneak a camera in my jersey pocket for the century, so hopefully I’ll get some decent pictures to post. Have a good weekend, everyone.


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