Sunday, February 28, 2010

Three Greenways in Raleigh

Took Turtle to the parking lot of the University at the corner of Gorman St. and Western Blvd. I got on the Greenway there which I think is the Reedy Creek Greenway but I am not sure because the sign just say Capital Area Greenway. I next got on Walnut Creek Greenway which now connects to the one I was one and it did not use to do so. Then a ways down Walnut Creek I found a Greenway named Rock Creek Greenways I believe and I had not seen it before also it looked brand new.
I had a tail wind most of the way out which meant I had a head wind on the return trip. None of the climbs on these Greenways are very long but a few can be very steep. One I was doing was 6% and went to 13% for a real short stretch at the top of the climb most of them were about 3%. I only orde 20 miles but it really wore me out.
I only took three pictures and they included here. One is just a portrait of Turtle ready to go. Another is Turtle showing off her Donate Life thingy. I keep telling her it is a key chain but she insists it is a zipper pull - maybe she is right. The third is my chain failure. I can not believe I broke the chain again. I have broke this chain three time so counting the original master link I use to put it on it now has four master links. I wonder how much force it is suppose to take to break one of these chains and am I really able to produce that much force or is there something wrong with this chain.
GPS not back yet so no GPS data today.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Ken & Jen's Excellent Adventure

Met my new friends Ken and Jen, two Terratrike owners/riders, at their home in Sanford and we had a real nice 35 mile ride in the country side around Sanford.

Ken and Jen are about two weeks away form a 7000 mile trike adventure. They are planning to ride coast to coast plus a bit extra with the intent to raise awareness of benefits to our fellow man that the simple act of being an organ donor can have. You may read about them and follow their journey HERE.

Ken and Jen were on a training ride and I joined them for fun. Since Ken was going to be pulling his BOB trailer with about 70 pounds of their gear in it and Jen pulling her BOB with Simon in it I decided to bring my Burley trailer just so we could be quite a site and I believe we were. My trailer was empty and I just wanted to see how it would do behind Turtle. Turtle thought she was cute with her Burley. I got the Burley about the same time I got Turtle planning to do some touring myself someday and someday I will but I dough I will ever do 7000 miles.

For me this was also a ride to see how I would do. It is the first time I have ridden over 20 miles without the Bionx and in some reasonable hills. I did pretty well, got a little tired toward the end but I did expect to. I was able to climb the hills slowly but without any real problems - I even lead some of the climbs but I did not not have any weight in my trailer. We made two stops so I did over 4 hours on the trike with just two short stops. I still have a good ways to go but it seems doable and I am making progress.

My pictures from the ride are HERE

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

New weight lose - finally

I have finally got a new low weight today after months of being stuck.

I weighted 347.0 pounds this morning, giving me a lose of 63 pounds my prevous low was 349.4 pounds.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

There are very few things better than being with your friends and riding.

Had a real great day Tuesday. I told my friends Peggy and Bryan about my decision to remove the Bionx from my trike, of my plans to learn to ride without assistance and that I would not be riding much with them for a while because I would not be able to keep up and did not want them to have to spend a lot of they riding time waiting for me. Both were very supportive and told me that they did still want to ride with me and would. It was really great to have their kind words and support, it meant a lot to me.
I told them I was planning to ride Greenfield almost every Tuesday and Thursday evenings after work weather permitting. They both told me they would join me there from time to time and that we would plan other rides together on weekends. I really enjoy the company of each of them and when all three of us can get together it is even better.
I kind of suspected one of them might show up tonight but was not sure and neither told me for sure that they would be there. When I got there there was no one there which was fine like I said I was not really sure either was riding tonight. So I pumped up my tires and set about getting ready to ride. As I walked from the side door of the van where I had been putting on my bluetooth headset for music while I rode, I looked up and both Peggy and Bryan were sitting on their bikes right behind Turtle grinning at me. I jumped (if you know anything about my size that is not insignificant). I was completely surprised and taken back to see them there and over joyed having them here to ride with me. I find it hard to put into words how much it meant to me having them show up to ride. It made me feel like a cyclist again because I had not been feeling like one because of how hard the first couple of rides had been. They had ridden 13 miles take a round about route as Bryan described it to get in extra miles and we rode a loop and a half together before they turned off to ride home. I am not sure what their final milage was, I just hope they did not get too cold going home. It was almost dark when they turned off. I finished the loop, doing 12.34 miles for the day with a new high post Bionx average speed of 10.1 mph for the Greenfield ride. I was pretty cold when I got finished.
Peggy and Bryan helped me so much by what the described as a simple act - they just wanted to come ride with a friend. Their kindness to me will not be forgotten.
I tried recording the ride with my iPhone using iMapMyRide but the iPhone lost the GPS signal 4 different time so the map track and therefore the distance is messed up - I guess carrying the iPhone in my jersey pocket does not let the GPS stay in contact. I will have to see if I can make this work better.
I may have figured out a way to solve the seat recline problem without making major changes to the frame of the trike. I believe if I extend the seat back about 3 to 4 inches moving the upper back brace on the seat frame up it will allow the seat to recline more and that should solve the recline problem. I will also give me more back support and may make it possible for me to use the head rest attachment and the seat back bag. The nice thing about this solution is I am not modifing the frame of the trike therefor voiding the warranty. I will buy two seat frames and join them together I will also have to buy two seat covers and have them cut and sewn together to accommodate the new frame. If I ever want to sell the trike all I have to do is remove the modified seat and put the stock one back on. Also I should be able to handle the cutting, reassembling, brazing of the seat frame and sewing myself.
Like I said I had a great day.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Greenfield Prky the slow way.

Well I made it back to Greenfield today and managed 21 miles at avaverage speed of 9.49 mph. Saw one other cyclist out there. Never got close enough to se if I knew them but he/she had on a bright yellow jacket. There were also several walkers/runners out there.
No GPS data again the unit is recording my rides but I can not get it to transfer the data to the computer. Called Garmin and they told me that it was likely caused by a defective cable and that they would repair it if I sent to them so off it goes.
The odometer is at 3043.9 miles for the Terratrike Tour and 22824.5 miles for the Vanguard. I am just recording those numbers here because they will likely get deleted.
I had a good ride did not get real tired but my butt still hurt - got to find some way to get the seat reclined more.
Tuesday looks like a riding day so I plan on leaving work 30 minutes early and get a ride in. It is not much fun riding so slowly but I am riding all the time in the small ring trying to get my cadence up along with everything else I am working on.
A bit of good news I finally lost some more weight. Granted it is only .4 pounds but it is the first time I have recorded a lose in about 3 months.
Got a nice comment from Ken and Jen - nice to hear from you all.
I am really not sure what to do about the Thursday night SlowSpoke ride when it starts up. Right now I could not keep up with anyone not sure I could live with everyone riding away from me when I use to ride in the faster group.
Except for the seat position problem Turtle is preforming very well but I am sure she is not happy about going so slowly.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

First ride Turtle 2

I got to Greenfield about 11:45 and was riding for noon or so I think. The GPS shows a history for the ride but when I ask it to download it say it does not see any new activity. So here's my data.

Distance 20.22 miles, 2:10:13 riding time, average speed 9.23 mph. Not all that great but close to what I expected. I rode as hard as I could having my heart rate in the 140s during the climbs. I only stopped once at 6 miles to remove some clothes because I was too warm. I did the rest to the loops none stop I really hurt toward the end of the ride - my seat is still to up right and I am not use to riding. I have a lot of work to do.

I did see and meet another cyclist out there and we chatted for a while. Mike was a nice guy and was riding a nice looking Trek US Postal bike. I was a bit surprised to see someone else out there riding.

If I can get the GPS to download my data I will add a like and maybe a picture of Turtle 2.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Turtle reborn

After work I came home and removed all of the Bionx hardware and the Bionx rear wheel from my trike. It took about an hour but was not real hard to do. The wheel weighed over 10 pounds - it with the two batteries I carried weighed in at over 27 pounds.

To replace the rear wheel I took the five spoke carbon-fiber Aerospoke wheel from my Vanguard recumbent. It weighed in at just a tad over 5 pounds. I removed it's 8 speed cassette and placed the 9 speed cassette from the original Terratrike 20" wheel. I them cleaned it and tightened the hub on the wheel and remounted it on the trike. I did remove the tire and tube from the Bionx wheel and put them on the Aerospoke wheel. I then made the necessary adjustments to get the gears shifting correctly. I then removed the left hand front Grip-shifter since it is no longer needed because of the High-Speed Drive.

Saturday I will go for her first ride without the Bionx and see how we do.

Bye bye Bionx!

Thursday the tempature got up to 47 degrees so I took off of work a half an hour early so I could go get a hour of riding in. I had everything with me and went to Greenfield Pkwy to ride for an hour or so. Five miles into the ride the Bionx failed again. It just quit working. It went off and just would not come on. I got back to the van and was so cold I dicided to just go home.

I have decided to remove the Bionx system for Turtle and try to ride with out it

I have always had a love-hate relationship with my Bionx system. It helped me a lot when I first was trying to ride but I have been feeling more and more that it is hurting me more than helping me now. I have become very dependent on it not to be able to get myself to ride with out it because I love the speed and there for the distance I can do with it. I love going fast and riding long distances.

The Boinx has 4 levels of assistance. 1 is 35%, 2 is 75%, 3 is 150% and 4 is 300% assistance. What this means is that when it is on 2, which is where I use mine about 95% of the time it will add up to 75% of the power in addition to the power I am putting into the pedals. So if I am producing for example 100 watts based on it's program it will add up to 75 watts to the rear wheel. Of course it does not supply 75 watts all the time just enough to get you to the speed it is programed to get you to with the amount of torque you are appling to the pedals. On flats and down hills it does nothing once you are up to speed. It does help a lot going up hills and to a lessor extent when accelrating up to speed and in head winds. So what this means to my cycling is that instead of climbing hills a between 8 and 12 mph I will be climbing them at about 2 to 4 mph. This means I will take 4 or more times the time to climb hills than I have been and there is just no way I can rede with real cyclist in groups like I have been. I do beleive I can do the distance or at least the shorter one for now and will get to where I can do the longer rides in time. Until I lose a lot more weight I will still be climbing hills very slowly. This is going to be very hard for me. So I will likely not do many if any groug rides for a while maybe a long while. I already have problems being accepted as a serous cyclist because I ride a trike and the Boinx just made this worse based on the questions I was asked and comments I have heard which I am sure I was not suppose to hear(one of the problems of having unusually good hearing). I will be back to solo cycling and most likely mostly from Garner because it is a nice area to ride and it is easy and cheap.
What to do about the Tour for Cure - I beleive I will continue to plan to ride it. I do not have to ride 75 miles each day if that is too much. Last year I rode with the Bionx on level 1 the whole ride and the two batteries still did not last the whole ride and I ended up ride about 8 miles each day with out it. Also it will not be necessay to worry about electricity when camping there or at any other rides or events I go to. That will be nice. I also plan to still do the Spring CNC - once again there are a number of routes to choose from and they are all supported and again not requirement for electricity at the camp site.
Let see if I can come up with other pluses to this besides not needed electricity when at multi-day event. Well once I remove all the hardware, replace the rear wheel and not be carrying the two batteries the trike will lose about 24 pounds. I am sure it will not make up the differents for the power the Bionx added but it is something. Also it will make cycling simpler, no battaries to worry about and deal with. Just pump up the tires, turn on the GPS and music and ride. I have been thinking I want to try going back to the Bar-end shifter and removing the Bionx console will make the possible space wise. When I do ride I will still be on my triek but ti will be just me and when I got to the level where I can ride well enough it will be just me not me and my "cheater", the Bionx, as it has been called.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Lets Ride Trikes - Meetup.Com ride on the ATT

I setup this ride just to try to gather a group of trikers together to ride. At first it looked like we might have a good size group. We had 5 people say they were coming anf one Maybe - to the the ones who were planning to ride were for two riders so we have 7 confirmed and one maybe. Mostly due to the weather only three of us showed up but we had a nice if cool ride.

I was really nice to meet Ken and Jen and to see their Tours. Their trikes are about a year younger than mine but there are very few differences - just a couple of component changes.

The trail was in good shape and there were a lot of others using it in-spite of the cool weather. I even rode through some very small patches of snow.

My GPS data is HERE

My Picture are HERE