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for all my friends · city loop

city loop

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Went for a spin around the city today.  I guess the CycleOps heart rate strap wasn’t really any better than the Garmin one, because it was reading above 105% max for a pretty long time before it normalized.  Hopefully that won’t happen again, but I’m pretty sure it will…

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Sunday.  I slept in a bit but as soon as I woke up, I knew I’d want to get back on the cruiser again.  So I threw on some clothes and hoped it wouldn’t start drizzling like it did yesterday on Twin Peaks.  Lucky for me, the weather was pretty spectacular, and I stopped multiple times to just enjoy the view.  It made me appreciate the city a bit more.  Side note, yesterday afternoon I picked up a new battery for my heart rate strap thinking that was the issue on why it wasn’t reading correctly in the first 10 minutes of the ride.  But now, even after the battery change, it’s reading wonky.  So I just took out the battery and placed it in the other strap I have, and it seems to be reading okay now…but I’m indoors, not moving.  Not quite the most realistic conditions it’ll be used in, but oh well.  We’ll see how it works.

Hope everyone has a good weekend.  It isn’t over yet!

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I’m the first to admit that I haven’t been riding as much as I’d like.  I’m running at lunch sometimes, but even that’s been spotty at best.  I’m putting most of my effort towards my job and have been constantly trying to improve my work.  We’re shorthanded to say the least, and juggling 2, 3, or sometimes even 4 projects is just draining.  I’d love to have more of a balance.  I’d love to come back home to just relax and watch some pro cycling.  It’s been nearly impossible for me to even want to sit in front of a computer after working all day on one.  All my energy has been sapped because of my job.  Yesterday, I almost cracked, but stayed motivated and finished my project at 10pm.  I love the work I do.  I want to keep doing it, learning from all my great co-workers.  I just don’t want to break under the stress.

I’m hoping Wednesday night track racing at Hellyer will help me find more of a balance between work and play.  I honestly miss logging into this blog and writing about whatever I want.  That’s still the reason why I continue to come on and sporadically write.  I’m still alive, I’m still here, and will continue to write for myself, and no one else.  I’m happy to share my experiences through work, cycling, and everything else.  People that have been reading along with me can hopefully sympathize.  I’ve just been snagged away from my passion for a short while, but will always have eternal respect for cycling, running, and endurance sports in general.  I want to keep writing, running, riding, and reading everything I can.  But sometimes sleeping for 9 or 10 hours is more within line of what my body needs to recover from work.  It’s tough, but I’m going to handle it and will come back stronger.  No regrets.

If this doesn’t get updated for another day or so, you’ll know where I stand.  I don’t know any of you personally, but I hope that the balance between work and fun also finds you well.  Have a good weekend.

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Not ideally how I wanted to start the morning off chilling around town.  I was riding through Golden Gate park and while trying to avoid a bad section of road, the back tire smack a huge pothole.  At first, I was more concerned that I dented the rim since the entire back of the bike jumped up in the air.  After riding about 50ft more, the hissing started.  Le flat.  No problem, though, I figured I could just swap out the tube, head back home instead of hitting Twin Peaks on the way back.  So after fixing it, I road back through the city.  While waiting at a light, I heard a loud pop.  I got off the bike and looked at the rear tire, it spun smooth and everything.  Maybe slightly under-inflated, but nothing that could’ve made a popping sound.  Then I looked at the front wheel.

Oh geez.  One of the spokes had snapped.  I wiggled it free from the hub and inspected the remnants of the rim.  It still spun, it was just a bit wobbly.  I opened up the brake basically all the way.  Then entire time, this security guard in front of the old gas station was saying things like “Yo man, I think God might be giving you a sign!” “I ain’t ever seen that before, that’s some crazy…what is that even made out of?” “Ight, that thing spins now, but I feel like you’re gonna be good for about 8 blocks before that thing comes apart, how far you live – damn that’s far.”  Nice guy though.  I made it back home, safe and sound.  I gotta get this thing fixed though.  It’s the back up rim for my CAAD10.  Surprisingly enough, there’s more miles on the DT Swiss 240s/HED Belgiums on the CAAD10 than there are on the Halo/Velocity A23’s that are on the CAAD5.  Strange it would break, but I guess it just happens sometimes.


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My favorite spot in the whole city.

I forgot how much fun riding a track bike was.  It’s nice to mix it up a bit, as well.  Broadway, Embarcadero, Marina, Crissy, Lincoln, Presidio, Arguello, Golden Gate Park, 7th to Laguna Honda, Twin Peaks, Roosevelt to 14th, Market, Mission and eventually, back home.  I feel like I need a nap now, or something.

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After a relatively lazy day of doing laundry and vegging out doing nothing, I figured I should jump on the bike for a ride around the city.  We’re having another bout of warm weather for the next couple days, which should be nice.  It also makes me wonder if the weather is going to get cold at all.  As a side note, I met up with 20+ people from my grammar school class last night, many of which are still living/working in Bay Area.  I hadn’t seen some people in nearly 10 years, so it was nice catching up and seeing familiar faces.  It also motivated me to see them doing really, really well for themselves.

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With the laundry out of the way, I rode around the city with a clear head.  I hate lingering stuff like that.  After not riding for a couple weeks, it was a painfully uncomfortable treat to be on the city bike again.  Very few things compare to the freedom of being on a bike.

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Another lazy spring afternoon filled with lots of wind and sunny skies.  I went along the Marina and towards Crissy, expecting the 75th anniversary tents to still be up, but to my surprise, the festivities were over, and crews were out disassembling a lot of the venues.  Dropped towards the Legion of Honor and saw a guy getting pulled over for not having his brake lights working on the trailer he was towing.  A minute later, the guy passes me up on Clement, tailed by the police officer.  As he brakes at the crest, the lights work – I’m assuming the guy didn’t get a ticket, considering they caught back up to be so quickly.  I came back around and was blasted by more wind from the coast.  Usually the short descent from the Cliff House to the beach is fast and empty, but while I was there, it was practically the opposite.  Windy and lots of cars double parked.

I cut through the park and saw this other random guy chilling in front of the De Young:

Ben and his new Vamoots road bike.  Good seeing you out, Ben!

After that, I crept up slowly to the top of Twin Peaks.  There were 3 people ahead of me on the bike lane, 2 of which were in matching fluorescent jackets.  The other guy was riding a Walmart special mountain bike, 1 piece bar and quill stem combo.  I was at least 100ft back from the Walmart guy and shifted into the small ring, in preparation for the wind tunnel we were all about to ride into.  The random try hard guy looks back at me with his visored mountain bike helmet, his loose-fitting square sling back swinging on his back, wildly, and grabs the center of his bar/stem quill, attempting to “tuck”.  He was gaining on the fluorescent couple.  It was about to go down.

But it didn’t go down.  In fact, before he even caught up to them, I caught up to him.  And then I passed him, slowly, and passed the fluorescent couple.  He seemed bummed, and hopped on my wheel, but split off somewhere along the way.

Inner city commuters are even better than Marin ones.  So excited I cruised around the city to witness such an event.

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After vegging out and acting rather lazy the entire time after I arrived back from my morning ride, I figured I’d get out of the house and ride through town extra chill to get the legs spinning.  Oddly enough, I was riding down Market and saw a seemingly random guy roll up beside me – of course, I look over, and it’s Dustin from the shop.  I was in disbelief, I don’t think I’ve ever seen him outside of the shop before.  I need to get out more…Either way, he mentioned he had just gotten off work from the Levi’s pop up bike shop.  He swung off at Van Ness, but it was awesome seeing him.  I’m pretty sure he’s built, if not touched, every single one of my bikes.  The guy is a legendary mechanic.

So I rolled through the park and went down to see Ocean beach – yep, still sandy.  I headed back through the park and saw another random guy heading in the opposite direction.  Of course, it was JB:

Calypso duo.  If you don’t know what color that refers to, Google it!  Aluminum era twins, too, I believe – I believe the CAAD5 is from around 2001, and the Quantum is 2000.  Good seeing you out, JB.  And again, congrats on the new job.

I slowly crawled through the city to hit Twin Peaks, cue top photo.  There must be double the amount of tourists here in the city because of the holiday weekend and the 75th anniversary of the Golden Gate bridge – there are a ton of people out, in every section of the city.  It’s good to see people enjoying the nice weather.  I guess things like traffic and congestion don’t bother me as much when I’m riding really slowly.

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I felt extremely lazy this morning and ditched the idea of a ride.  And then the more I thought about all the people up in Sacramento racing the Golden State Series crit and circuit this weekend, the more I like the sound of a city loop on the CAAD5.  After all, I hadn’t ridden it for a while, and with the nice weather, it’d be the perfect opportunity for some cruising.  Or at least that was the idea, initially.  So with a slew of sunscreen on, I rolled out of the house.  We’ve been having somewhat of a heatwave here, and today was one of the warmer days.  I guess that’s what I get for leaving all late.  As soon as I jumped onto the bike, my idea of cruising went right out of the window.  With the wind and hordes of tourists out, it was about to be a jammer.  My lungs could use the burn, anyhow.  First race of the season is next week, and I’ve basically done nothing but base riding.

Admittedly, it felt great to open up the valves all the way.  The sensations of puke and lung collapse now remind me how fun it was climbing through the Presidio, dropping down and then heading up to the Legion of Honor.  I was planning on tacking on Lake Merced but it’d be all wind-blown, and I would’ve run out of water by then.  Might as well just keep it strictly mountains (bro).  The park was packed as I headed up through to get to Laguna Honda.  I hit the longest light ever halfway through, but figured, ‘Ah what the hell, could happen at a race, too.’  More burning lungs and I made it to the top – cue photo above.  The descent pretty much sucked because of traffic, but I guess I wasn’t in it for the hill bombing, anyway.

Quick cut through the city back into the Presidio, which in hind sight was a horrible idea since Doyle Drive was being torn down, and all the roads that lead back towards the Marina were basically detoured.  At that point, I was just riding to get back home though, so it wasn’t too bad.

It felt amazing going a bit faster for a change.  I forgot how un-aero riding flatland with risers was, that slayed me.  At least I could tuck a bit on descents…

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