Monthly Archives: June 2010

If aint broken..dont fix it.

In my case it was broken and it did need fixing. Upon inspection of the new parts Rob explained to me just how an 11-28 cassette works and that I had a 12-25 currently on my bike. He explained that the 11-28 will make for easier higher gears and harder hard gears but that my inbetween wouldnt be as close to each other in feel..meaning basicaly that for flat rides the gears would feel a bit harder. Sooo he convinced me to let him put on a 12-27 he had laying around from an unused bike. In the process he changed out my chain which he isnt 100% sure now if my bikes a 10speed as he thought or if it in fact has  9 speed parts on it because the gears arent shifting so nicely. He think this may be due to the 3 ring I have..i guess he’s not used to tuning a 3 ring.

So I took my bike for a spin on base today to get used to the feel of having an actually clean set of gears! I soon got very frustrated with them. During shifting on the 3 ring..the chain fell off a few times. When shifting between the gears they did what i’ll call ‘the chain dance’. The chain would clink around between gears before settling on one that I wasnt aiming to also wouldnt go on the largest ring nor on the smallest ring in the back cassette. There was also quite a large delay between me shifting and the gear actually catching…my legs pedals in limbo for a while making for very inconsistant pedal..only for the gear to decide to settle on a hard one hurting my legs.  So after my 2nd lap I called it quits.

Wensday im taking my bike to the shop and having them fix it. I dont want hubs thinking he’s incapable but even he admits that he isnt good with the triple ring. And since I know absolutely nothing about fixing leaving it to the professional. I just want it fixed enough that i’ll be used to the gears and able to ride it with ease for the race on the 11th.

I will admit though…its fantabulous having shiney parts again 😀


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Small upgrades

Now that I will be jobless this means a new bike for me is post-poned. No biggy. It would have been nice but I accept the consequences of the income slash. But while I’m still recieving a few more paychecks in the following weeks we are able to make some minor upgrades to my existing bike.

A new chain, finaly! And new rear casset (shimano 6700)11-28. Easy riding you say with a 3 ring infront? Exactly! I just need to get used to the many more gear shifting options. I now have a 15-25 on it I believe. Rob feels im now due to move up to a 2 ringer infront as well. Hmmm I think I prefer my option of laziness, honestly.

Now I just have to wait for him to get the time to change them out. Im curious to see how different my riding will feel with a cassette that isnt coated with sand and crud from florida still. Im pretty sure its gonna feel like heaven on 2 wheels.

Homework has consumed the last 2 days so I havent been getting my riding on. This is what I get for holding off till the end of the week to do the assignments. Theres just so much reading to do before the assignments. ..yes im being a whiner. So in oh say about 20-30 mins I will be mounting up for some laps on base. Im feeling lazy this weekend and dont feel like venturing out to do hills or distances far from home. I think im just gonna do as many laps on base as I mentaly can handle then come home and finish my homework. The first race of the season is in 3 weeks afterall. I cant let myself get rusty. I feel I may have competition this year!

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More time to ride

The latest in my world today consists of a pretty big decision i’ve recently made. Im quitting my job. I’ve decided to focus heavily on school at the current time while we’re able to do it (financial stable, no kids). This has been on my mind for quite a while and i’ve finaly discussed it with my husband and he saw nothing wrong with doing this. My main worry is that my classes are being payed through Tuition Assistance. If I fail a class because I dont have all the time to study (i need to read something at least 3x over for it to stick) then I would have to pay back for it. So by mid July I will be jobless and have all the time in the world for my studies. Im excited about this…even if some subjects bore me.

A bonus to this? More riding time!! The brain needs a break from all that learning and what better way to do it than to clear the mind on 2 wheels!

I’ve been commuting alot lately. Robs needed the car so i’ve been commuting. I think I may go out with a bang on this by commuting everyday until my last day at work. Theres nothing else i can really commute for anyways unless I decided to make trips to the library for studying or something.

I also think I may get to my goal weight now. I will no longer be tempted to eat fast food for lunch everyday, nor have a starbucks on my morning shifts or be tempted by all the sweets co-workers always bring in. And my worst habit will no longer be so easily supported or available, Soda.  I will miss my job alot and all the friends i’ve made but its not like im going to hold myself up in the house 24/7.

This will definately be an interesting experience.

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Forgetfull hills

I was in a very fiesty mood yesterday and insisted on wanting to ride with the group yesterday. Unfortunately nobody showed so it was just Rob and I to go about our ride. In the end I dont know which would have been worse..the rode I chose or trying to keep up with the guys.

I had a route in mind that I had done with Sarah in the previous post. It was a pleasant ride aside from a few hills but theres no avoiding hills on any ride here. So I took us out to where this route started. After reaching the hilly portion I realized maybe I made a mistake in the route choice. The hills seemed steeper than I remembered. In the end I  walked up 3 hills. The last one I tried my hardest to finish without walking but going 3mph with legs aching I gave up and walked. Feeling overly defeated by hills I started crying and hyperventilating from being out of breath. Rob had gone ahead without (probably his way of boosting me to keep going by trying to keep up with him) but I was frustrated with my lack of energy to keep a pace going on the hills. Rob didnt know what to think with my minor brakedown. I just expressed my frustration of hills and on we went.

But to add the ride from hell I got us lost. At some point or other I took a wrong road and brought us way out of the way from where we were supposed to go. After trying to get our sense of direction and where we were Rob managed to get us back on track, taking a different route home. Overall we ended up only being 5 miles out of our way. Rob was hoping for an easy pleasant ride and in the end I murdered his legs with the hills I chose. He’s done parts of this route before with the super competitve guy in his group. The guy does these hills regularly apparently.

I have decided, on my good days, I will do just the hilly portion of this route to help me improve on my climbing. After my episode and frustration, I realized the only way I can beat these bastard of hills is to do them repeatedly until I dont have to walk them anymore. In the end I know my sense of hill climbing pride will sky rocket but for now I have to learn to not let them get the best of me to the point of tears anymore. 

The first photo is just to show how the roads work in Kyllburg. As you can see by the building the incline is very sudden, steep and curvy. We pass this building but dont actually climb this specific hill:

Here I came across a site that explains the elevations in and around Kyllburg. This is for a Mt. Bike trail but hills are hills in this area. I believe Rob said we did over 2,000ft elevation on our route.

Anywho, Today I think im going to take it easy and just ride some laps on base. My legs are killing from yesterday still.

I think Rob has decided to build me a new road bike. We can get parts pretty cheap through a place on base so its makes sense to just do it this way. Now its just a matter of what kind of frame to get. In compact sizes I use a 43-44cm frame (with Giant xs). But according to my measurment this morning Rob says I’d ride a 46cm normal frame. Im tiny what can I say. 5’2″.

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I wanna ride with the boys!

I’ve begun feeling a little competative lately. I think because I was pumping myself up for the possible race this sunday. However, upon some more investigation we find that it is in fact being held in July. Only now I’m sitting on the edge of my seat because I may not get the day off work for it in July. Oh and the horror that I may not be able ride the local race in August because another co-workers taking vacation! Good bye race year 2010, I dont even get to see you from the sidelines. But we’ll see if things can be worked out and if i’ll be able to get the days. Its just 2 days of the year but these are 2 days that unfortunately other people put in for before me. What total crap! Maybe I should just not work at all…all the time in the world to ride bikes then! But one cant support the addiction without an income.

Anywho, I have off Saturday and Rob’s riding with the boys again. I showed interest in attending one of these boy rides but I was told I would be left in the dust. Apparently one guy is a very compatetive rider which then makes everyone else competative which then means ‘shortstuff’-me will be left behind. Sooo I guess its another solo ride again. Its kind of dissapointing, the lack of estrogen on the bikes here. I want a little competition to motivate me to push harder and get stronger. I’ve got one friend that rides but we dont always get the same days available and then theres Rob but we dont always get to ride together either.

Well anyways. Im having a taste for a new bike. Not just the commuter im still patiently awaiting but oh say perhaps another road bike :p. So heres some idea’s Rob’s throwing at me, though I may have to wait till christmas:

Basicaly i’ve never ridden anything other than my Giant OCR Elite. For all I know I could be even more comfortable on a different kind of bike. And after a few years on Lulu I want to experience something new.

Here’s another team I came across,

Toodles, ShortStuff.

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First Race of the year.

There is still not a 100% confirmation on this but Sunday is supposed to be a Road Race at Ramstein AB. I managed to get off for the race and my friend hopefully rounded up an alternative to take her to the airport. Which leaves my morning open to attend the race. Weather is supposed to be decent. My only fear is that i’ve never ridden on Ramstein before so I have no idea what the route is like. To a point I hope for competition but at the same time im liking getting all these first places for my category lol.

I had planned on a long bike ride this weekend but that is now post poned until after the race. This week will be light to moderate riding as to not injure myself before the race. With my knee giving me problems I need to take it easy so I can pound hard during the race. Which wont be to hard since its set to rain most of the week.

So Rob and I, as well as a few other bikers, will head out sunday in hopes the race is actually taking place. If not then we just drove an hour for nothing lol.

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Girls ‘ride’ out

Above is my riding buddy Sarah and me.

 As the boys went out for an all day ride to lord-knows-where we had decided during the week that we were due for a ride ourselves. It was a beautiful day! Not to hot not to cold. Just right. Our ride took us through Oberkail to Kylburg then out via the Kyllburg bike trail to Speicher. A nice 30 mile loop for me. Although getting out of that Kyllburg valley can be quite treaturous (sp). This route offers lots of beautiful distracting views.  After these photos it slipped my mind to take more pics.  I will do this route again maybe next weekend with Rob so hopefully i’ll remember next time.

On the way out of the route in Speicher we come face to face with an ice cream shop. How perfect. I will definately be visiting that place at some point.

The day earlier I got a 35 mile ride in. The heat made me cut it short. Definately doesnt beat the Florida heat index’s but living here for a year now with all the cold temps 80 degree’s feels like 100.

Today is another non-optional day of biking to work. Rob needed the car and im stuck with my bike. This isnt bad but its just so typical…the forcast is rain. Honestly I dont think i’ve had one day when I have to ride to work that weather is nice. Have to bike to work=icky weather. Thanks mother nature.

I have a new life goal. On top of getting a Masters in Nutritional Science i’m adding to my list with joining a women’s cycling team. Now, this will only happen if the next location we move to has a team in the vacinity. Granted im on a team now (Spangdahlem Saber cycling) this team is the majority Mt.Bikers and as soon as Rob and I got here the team seems to slowly be dwindling down. Its all Military members (aside from spouses) which adds to the reason..12’s, deployments, exercises, etc. And there just arent that many USAFE road races. They used to have an Armed Forces Cycling team which died away about 2-3yrs ago. So lets see if I can meet this goal in the states. I may be 26 but I still have lots of potential!

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