Saturday, April 04, 2020

I go zoom

Yesterday I discovered the joy of sprinting. On the bike, I'm still not a runner and have accepted that I never will be. I'm still not fast by any stretch of the imagination, but I hit a speed higher than I ever got on the screaming neon pink electric bike using pedal assist 3 in 7th gear--and to me that felt like I was flying.

Just to get some fresh air, we pulled the bikes out of the garage yesterday afternoon and headed out for a short ride, and after a bit the thought poked at me: go faster. Or at least try to. Let's embrace the notion of high intensity interval training and just...go.

So I went.

Normally I ride at about 13mph, which is a vast improvement over the 8 mph I started at last year when I bought the gray hybrid. And again on the little blue Townie. Like I said, I'm slow. Thirteen feels respectable to me, and it's a casual kind of riding. Just enough to get my HR to about 140. I figured I have some wiggle room with the HR now and can push to 150-155 without worrying that my heart will explode, so I pushed up to 15. Then 16. And that felt pretty freaking good...until I changed gears and realized the chair was rubbing against the front derailleur.


The Spouse Thingy suggest I move off the little chain ring to the big one and play with the rear cogs to find the same ration...but I don't have the same sweet spots there. Still, I switched gears and headed off again, and did the same sprint/slower/sprint/slower thing. Just as I was running out of gas--a 180 calorie lunch is not enough, boys and girls--I looked at the bike computer to check my HR and saw the speed.

19 mph

Yeah, not FAST for most riders, but fast for me. I literally have not topped that on the pink beast, even using pedal assist. My top on that is 17. I could go higher; I could use the throttle and hit 24, but never wanted to. I got a weird little thrill out of hitting 19 under my own power, even if it was only for a bit over a quarter mile.

Now I need to see if I can adjust that front derailleur so that the chain doesn't rub, and if I can't I'll have to take the bike in and pay someone else to turn a few screws (I should be able to, it's a matter of patience and paying attention to tiny gaps, and I'm not sure I have that kind of patience.) If I don't and try to ride on the little cog, I can totally see the chain coming off when I shift, and with my luck it would startle me badly enough that I'll wipe out.

And apropos to nothing...that new saddle is amazing. Between it and switching to the Pearl Izumi Pro shorts, I'm now super comfortable on the bike.

The downside...I have outgrown the pink beast, and honestly, it makes me a little sad because it was my absolute favorite toy of all time. It's not going anywhere; it's still fun to ride for kicks, and once DKM is ready to start riding, it'll live in her garage for a while, so she can play with it and decide if she even likes riding.

Now if only today's rain would let up and the wind would die down...