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Tahoe Prep: Weeks 16 & 17

Tahoe Prep: Weeks 16 & 17

Last week got super-busy, and also rainy and it was less "structured training" and more "doing what I can with whatever's rideable around here." Lots of loops through neighborhood horse trails. Not great for the mental state, but good enough to keep my fitness improving.

This week, it's clear that my chain & chainrings are toast. Shark teeh on the rings and the chain is stretched all to hell. Replacements are en route. (I got lucky - the cassette seems to be in fine shape.)

So, how's the training going?

Meh. I rode enough, but didn't climb enough, and gained weight. (Work stress, lingering cold, etc., my resolve was weak.)

So, what now? Get back after it.

This week's checklist:

  • Hard climb 3 days
  • Ride 3+ hours
  • Drop a pound (Current weight: 184.8#)

Tahoe Prep: Week 15

Tahoe Prep: Week 15

This week got off to a rocky start: my rear tire picked up a nasty wood screw, which left me quickly going flat. I pulled over, pulled the screw out of my tire, and shoved in a plug. It was still hissing, so I put in a second plug which seemed to stop it.

A quick shot of CO2 got me rolling again, and I was off.

Unfortunately, just a few minutes later, I could feel that the rear tire was slowly going flat again.

I held out until the top of the switchbacks (the traction of super-low pressure is awesome), then used the rest of my first CO2 cartridge and hoped it would hold long enough to get me back to the office.

It did not. Two more top-ups killed my second CO2 cartridge, and then it was clear that I was out of options. I pulled out my phone and got a Lyft back to the office.

The rest of the week went pretty well, though. I didn't get in all the rides I wanted, but the final tally was solid nontheless.

This week's checklist:

  • Hard climb three days: check!
  • Ride 3+ hrs: check! (3:56)
  • Drop a pound: Nope.

My weight held steady at 182.6#. Stress at work saw me stuffing down a few extra cookies this week, and my usual routine of skipping breakfast & eating after my ride hasn't been consistent. So I'm honestly not surprised that I haven't dropped any more weight.

This week, I'll get everything dialed back in, and hopefully get my weight under 180# in the next couple of weeks.

Tahoe Prep: Week 14

Tahoe Prep: Week 14

Just as I started feeling like myself again, the rain rolled in.

Honestly, taking another week to rest & recoup is probably a good thing. But it left me hungry for some time on the bike.

I've found that the neighborhood horse trails stand up just fine in the rain, so I did a little exploring this week, with the aim of adding more dirt to my loop through Wallnut.

I discovered that the bike path along the creek is open all the way east from the office past Fairway, and that there's a tunnel under Valley Blvd that connects to the Lemon Creek Trail, and finally out to S Lemon Ave.

That opens up a whole new route for days I don't want to do a lot of climbing, which is awesome. And I just love "ally cat" rides that link a series of little-used, non-obvious routes. To me, they're just as interesting as any trail ride.

So, the rain seems to be passing, and I'm feeling great. Where am I at now?

  • Weight: I've maintained my weight at 182.2#, so my weight loss efforts will pick up next week right where I left off.
  • Training: I've logged about 3:00 of saddle time in the last two weeks, which puts me at roughly 40% of my normal volume. For being sick and getting shut indoors by rain, that's not as terrible as it could be. And I feel reasonably strong. (I always feel terrible after a rest-- I do better after a sharp ride loosens up the legs again.)

So all that puts me in position to get right back on the train again. Here's next week's checklist:

  • Hard climb 3 days
  • Ride 3+ hrs
  • Drop a pound

The forecast calls for cool, dry weather all next week, so I'm looking forward to hero dirt and sore legs.

Tahoe Prep: Week 13

We're gonna call this The Lost Week. I was fine on Monday. But on Tuesday I could feel that I shouldn't be in the office, and worked from home. On Wednesday, I finally admitted that things were going the wrong direction and saw my doctor, who diagnosed me with strep throat. Gross.

I spent Thursday pretty much comatose, and on Friday I worked from home, because a few things simply couldn't be pushed to next week.

So... yeah. Strep throat kicked my ass.

I'm very happy to say that I'm the only one in the house to get infected. My daughter & wife seem to have dodged it, through blind luck.

This weekend I'm going to rest and regroup as much as I can, and see how Monday's ride feels. That'll be day 6 of my 10-day antibiotic cycle, so I'm not expecting much.

Weekend Wrenching

Weekend Wrenching

Checked out a couple of videos, then decided to get my hands dirty. I found that engaging the clutch on my rear derailleur made it slightly stiffer than I liked, so I ended up riding on Friday with the on/off lever kind of wedged half way on. That was perfect, so I opened up the mechanism and adjusted the tension.

Nothing remotely difficult. Just feels good to learn something new about maintaining my bike.

The next thing, I think, is going to be overhauling my fork. Aside from my bottom bracket, it's about the only thing on my bike I haven't worked on yet. (And at this point, the only thing stopping me from doing the BB work myself is lack of tools. That's exacting stuff, and bearing presses are pricy.)

It's wonderful how quiet my bike is these days. No chain slap, no derailleur dangling, no grinding gears, no squeaky bottom bracket. Just my breathing and the sound of tire treads on the trail.

older stuff