Friday, August 5, 2011

MASH Transit

A couple of introductions to Fixed gear riding will follow in my next posts. As a result of a Facebook post of a friend of mine, I found that though commercial bike companies are selling fixed gear bikes of all kinds, there is hardly anyone talking about how to ride them.

For the impatient:

If you want to see the result of intense knowledge, skill, and experience, look no further than MASH Transit's film and body of work.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Surfing the Heat Wave

So, sports fans, this is my first summer in the fair city of Myrtle Beach. I have to say that it's (the heat) not been as bad as I thought, but IT's Hot! When I get down from my bike, or stop at a stop light, the sweat pours off of my body. This hasn't stopped me so far. It's a great idea to get up earlier. The heat is also motivation to get up earlier.

One of the riders this morning said his heart rate shot up to 189. Then he couldn't get it down. He seemed all right, and I hope he's okay. Personally, I have a slight headache, but I can't tell if it's from coffee.

p.s. I've been logging my food and supplements in my diy blog, "Food Up." The link is here.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Great ride with friends. 2 1/2 hours in the saddle. Did the "Moose Lodge" ride. Saw some buffalo. We are all working hard on our endurance. Hopefully our speedwork will keep getting better. It's great having new people on the ride too. They make if fun to welcome them into the fold. Out-of-towners are fun too... as long as they pull. j.k. Here's to Myrtle Beach rides!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Great group ride today. To moose lodge.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Nice to meet you.

Hi Brent. Nice to meet you.

Week 2: The present.

After week 1, the past, now it's time to move into the present. The last will be the future. I'll include the last quote from week 1's issue by Debbie Ford. She writes,
Liberated from the confusion, fear, guilt, and self-doubt of the past, you will naturally open up to new realms of awareness, emotional freedom and spiritual liberation.
Pretty cool huh?

So, on with the present.

The theory is that you have shed your old, "emotional baggage." All the stuff that has in the past depleted you is now resolved. So make sure you've accomplished week 1.

Debbie recommends a present-awareness practice of becoming present for 5 minutes. In our cycling analogy, this would be...

  • Checking your heart rate every 5 miles. Make a note of your respiration and your muscles.
  • Every so often, notice something that you haven't before on your regular ride. Be observant and enjoy being either outdoors in nature, or on the town, learning about your community. Maybe there's a shop that you can spend some time at another time.
  • How hungry are you?
Now for challenging yourself. Try a new sprint in a group ride that you left up to the other riders before. If you have been meaning to try a group ride, why not try it out. It could be a good way to energize your riding and gauge your fitness level. Eat more or less. Can you ride longer if you eat more or build muscle? If you eat less can you stay at the same performance level and lose weight?
In this enhanced sense of the present you can listen more deeply to the calling of your soul [the speed you want to reach.]

In a couple days I'll post the rest of the plan, the final week.
Here's the link for her book.

Murrels Inlet Biathlon.

There are three types of streets in Myrtle Beach. There's Bypass 17 which is not quite a highway, and has all the big chain stores from around the nation. There is Business 17 or Kings Highway that has local restaurants and beach shops. They go on forever and there are so many. Every possible square inch is covered and all visual space is covered by signs. Then there is Ocean Boulevard which is on the Ocean, duh. This has beach high rises forever and ever on it. Those are the three main streets. They all go Northeast to southwest.

I rode to Murrels Inlet today to a psyche appointment. 25 each way. I rode 3 miles down the point at Murrels Inlet to see if there, keep your fingers crossed, another bridge back to the, "mainland." There was not. It is all condos. Then I came up with an idea. Stay with me. Why not park my bike across the inlet from Little Tony's Ave. which is where the psych office is. Then I could find a navigable route and swim across. It is about 200 meters across. Then I'd keep clothes and a towel at her office,

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Bicycle Consciousness Cleanse

Today I found the latest issue of "Natural Awakenings." This is a health food magazine for Myrtle Beach and the area. It has a bunch of, "cleansing," articles. I thought I'd apply them to bicycling. The first one is, "consciousness Cleanse."

"Three weeks to a better future" (by Debbie Ford)

"This month is a powerful time to assess where we've been, acknowledge where we are right now and dream our most beautiful life into being. Starting now, we can move from the outdated modes of our limited thinking mind to tune into our eternal divine mind. Acting on these three recommended cleansing phases- one a week for the next three weeks- will work to lift us out of resignation and mediocrity into hope and excitement, and connect us with a future filled with surprises, possibility and deep purpose."

This will be a three week program for cycling. I am using cycling mostly as a metaphor for consciousness. We are trying to evolve our training into a cleansed version. Right now, we have limited bodies, and we want to take our, "cycling body," past its current limits. After we raise our fitness level, what can we do that we couldn't before? For me, stay with the group ride the entire time without dropping off.

Week One: The Past

THe first week of the 21-day cycling cleanse is dedicated to "creating a powerful magnet of desire and cleaning out the turbulent [cycling] emotions, outdated [cycling] beliefs, unresolved [cycling] incidents and restricting thoughts that have taken root in our minds and hearts.

  • Paraphrasing, After congratulating yourself for being a cyclist, "Write a list of your past successes versus your past disappointments in cycling." Let's remember to all keep high goals, Look at what worked for you and what didn't. I'm searching for the equivalent of a "grudge" in cycling, or something that it doesn't help to hold on to. What hidden tendencies kept you from going all-out in that race or group ride? Was it just doubts in your head? Was it something someone said? Did you remember to stretch? Are you pedaling in squares instead of circles? What kept you from, "just pedaling faster?"

    Okay, so there are million little diversions in cycling. We want to get rid of at least 20 of them that keep you from focusing on increasing your ability to ride fast, or ride well off-road if that's what you do. "I just don't have the right gearing." "I didn't hydrate." "I've got to improve my diet." "My water bottle nozzle is too skinny. I can't get enough water out of it." At this time of the season, as Debbie Ford says, is a perfect time to focus on your own biking ability. Hopefully you have put on all the base miles by now. (I know I haven't.) Let's get ready to,"bike forward."

  • Let's get rid of 100 things in your routine that can keep you from focusing on the core of your cycling. Should you put those spare parts up on Ebay? Do you have 20 pairs of sunglasses? Focus on only the few items you need for riding. Do you have 10 mini-pumps? Find 2 that work the best. One for your wife and one for you. Do you have bike maps for Deluth, South Dekota. Awe man, this is hard.

    Okay as a true bike addict, let's start over. Get rid of 100 things that keep you from cycling.

  • Do you have too many cds? Wow, I still have cds. Can you sell them? Too many books? Sell your extra books. Same with dvds.
  • If you must have, "Esquire," "GQ," or, "Maxis," limit it to one in the house at a time.
  • Do you have a subscription to "Under Water Basket Weaving of America Monthly," on your IPAD? Can you do with reading less?

  • Do you have too many supplements? By now you should know what works for you and what doesn't. Or what fits into your lifestyle. I only eat Clif Bars or similar vegan options. They're also easy to get almost anywhere. Otherwise Health Valley is my choice. Maybe you like Gatorade and a powerbar. Goo anyone? Hammer Gel? Whittle it down.

  • Maybe you can also whittle down your cooking? Have you mastered certain recipes? Maybe you have honed your cooking skills to quick, nutritious meals. For a while, can you focus on recipes that you need?

  • Too many blog subscriptions?

  • Okay fine, maybe you have too much cycling reading material. Time to take what you have found useful and keep just that handy. Maybe 2 training books instead of 5.

  • Too many computers or computer programs? Too many can be distracting. Do you really need to use Twitter AND Facebook?

  • Too concerned with appearance to be a better cyclist? Do you have too many mousses or gels? Maybe you can get a more efficient hair cut, or let it grow with no haircut at all,

Sunday, March 6, 2011

So have you ever been to Savannah, Georgia? After way too long, I have now been to Savannah. Why am I mentioning this? Because this could be prime urban riding territory. I can't imagine anything funner than riding a fixed gear around this olde locale. E.g. the Olde Pink House. And I only spent two hours in this city. What color fixed gear would I choose? I'm not sure, but it would have to be a traditional design. Definitely not with aero tubing.

Another possible great event would be stopping here on a bike tour. I'd just have to make sure to be where the annoying, loud, younger, frat boy, bar-hopping crowd is not. I've had enough of that in my urban riding. Come on people! "Obnoxiousness is used by the wasted young!"

I will be back Savannah.

p.s. I can't wait to go to Charleston.

Friday, March 4, 2011

West Palm Beach

While in West Palm Beach, there was a 100/60/30 mile ride for P.A.L. That's, "police athletic league." It seems like an annual event. It was Sunday, ~February 28th.Police ride.It went all the way up to where me an my family stay on Singer Island where Douglas MacArthur park is. There are plenty of bike lanes around West Palm Beach, though I haven't had a bike here yet.

Google rerouted the directions from North Myrtle Beach to Conway. Check it out.Route

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

A ride for disability services

On the 19th of February was the annual, "BiLo Marathon," in Myrtle Beach. Sorry I didn't post this before the event. In the future, I will mention upcoming events in posts. I volunteered for seven hours at the race packet/check-in booth. The next day, I was a course marshal at 50th and Ocean Blvd. I showed up at 8:05 (five minutes late) and there were already several runners passing my check point. My mile marker was 14 at this point. I don't know how they ran that fast, but they did. They couldn't have cheated because you can't cheat at the front.

The winner was a woman for the first time in the history of the race. She was interviewed later that day by news cameras and they showed it on the big screen at the House of Blues party.

While I was at the check-in desk, I found the booth for the 65 mile bike ride that would happen the day after the marathon. I signed up for 40 dollars. This ride was specifically for Conway area's people with disabilities. There was police escort, motorcycles following, sag service, concessions, route markers. It was fantastic. I don't do many of these rides, so it was really fun to ride that distance in a relaxed mode and have the course to ride with other people. I found a group of about ten people, guys and girls, to ride two/thirds of the way with. I went about ten miles with a fast front pack comprised of riders (both male and female) from the local "Grand Strand Bicycles." They were darn fast. There was, "chicken bog," at the end of the ride for everyone and free beer. Thanks Conway!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

So... this is wierd. It was 65 today with a low of 45. I don't know if this means temps will let up ALREADY. If I'm right, temps usually let up in late February.

It's been mid 50s all week. So that means riding. I've been in a down mood, energy wise and a little emotionally. This has meant little riding. I've been going about every other day with some running, but that's almost my entire day, productivity-wise. Working out is my "only salvation," right now. I know that if I get out and ride, the sun will do me great. It just seems like I'm slowing down and it take me longer in the day to get out and ride. I am counting on this changing as it warms up.

If anyone knows the forecast trends or has some tips on adding more energy to my day, please post.

p.s. 35 miles today, met some friends spontaneously at Piggly Wiggly.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Yogi by Bike

My latest pastime is riding the 12 miles to Market Commons as early as possible to do a yoga class: usually the 9:30 class to beat the traffic on Kings Business. Yoga is the productive part and then I usually splurge on a grande soy vanilla latte at one of the two Starbucks on the same block. The Yoga studio is "Yoga in Common." The instructors are all great (all women,) full of new advisement in each class. I am settling into their vinyasa, himilayan, and more types of yoga. One of my favorite things to do on prompting from one the yogis is to shape my intention for the practice. I have decided on topics such as reconciling my incredibly overstimulating jobs of the past (bike messenger and bill poster.) Both these jobs are exhilerating and fulfilling. Today I decided to have no intention other than focusing on the yoga itself. I'm not sure I'm interpreting "intention" how they mean it. I think it's great the way I do it. It makes it a life therapy which complements my regular therapy sessions. It transforms the thoughts (feelings with the body) from my life into emotions (thoughts and feelings felt within the body.)

I think that the two sports, yoga, and biking go well together. One compliments the other. One is in a controlled setting where everything is peaceful and the other exposes your body and safety to the elements and the mercy of passing drivers. You have to maintain that peace in yourself that you've built up. Ultimately, you have peaceful endurance. Ideally, I'd swim to yoga class. I could swim all along the coastline for 12 miles to Market Commons. I'd rather take the pedicab if Myrtle Beach gets its act together and advocates for the legal part of it.

After my incredibly successful ride with the Myrtle Beach cycling group, I haven't met up with anyone since. It's been bitterly cold (for Myrtle Beach) so I haven't run into any cyclists. I did 15 miles on Sunday in 19 degree weather. It's all about how you dress. Those balaclavas are key!!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Myrtle Beach Bikers never in an "awkward position."

Got to say, here in Myrtle Beach, the riders are very polite. They bend over backwards to help me out on the group rides. About halfway through the ride a couple weeks ago, I started having trouble keeping up. For the rest of the ride back from Murrels Inlet, they helped me stay in the pack and waited when I just couldn't keep up the pace. (By the way, it is almost incomprehensibly easier to stay in pack and draft than to try and stay with the group off the back. With physics against you, it's pretty hard. It's also mentally demoralizing to be hanging off the back just not able to catch up.) Steve also gave me an inner tube when Sean and I found that the flat tire patch wouldn't stick in the rain.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Human Commons - The street

Just because I haven't been posting doesn't mean i'm not riding. I've done about 200 miles since the last post. One was a group ride last sunday.
I just can't train indoors. I'm not ruling it out, but it's really hard. Kudos to those who do. I also don't have the space in this condo.

There's just something about riding in streets or on trails. It's knowing that you're sharing a public thoroughfare. Anyone can ride or be where you are being or have been. To those who don't know, I love public spaces. Community garden's, Farmers' Markets, beaches, swimming pools, heck... post offices. Libraries, public squares, the Red Square, the steps at Odessa, etc.... Check out publicspaceproject at,

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Go Badgers.

Rules of the Barn

The barn rules! Yes it does. The barn rules just because! Do you need anything more than that? If you do, you might lack.

Update for the people

I have done some riding since last post. I have gone further back into Barefoot Landing to the undeveloped area on Watertower Road. The road is great and it's not very traveled. It goes over busy 22. I still haven't gone to the dead end. Also, I need to go the other way on Watertower and see how much I can add to my route. So far it's 13 miles from Grande Dunes.
Today I went to the barn and back. What's the barn? you ask? The barn is where the horses and dogs are. It's a public barn. There are lots of fun people at the barn. We have to tack up our horses. What's, "tack?" Look it up: Horse Tack.
Barns are a high point in many people's lives. Just take horses and dogs, and add hay and you have a barn. I recommend barns highly.