January 23, 2004

Five-timer in my back yard

ajc.com | Lance Armstrong to ride in Tour de Georgia

Lance Armstrong will be racing in the Tour de Georgia this year, from April 20-25th.

The final route isn't set, but should be next week.

I don't usually double-post from the Tour weblog, but I thought this nugget qualified.

Armstrong hasn't raced in Georgia for almost 8 years.

January 23, 2004 in Atlanta, Cycling, Tour de France | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

December 12, 2003

Amsterdam vs. New Amsterdam on two wheels

Metropolis Magazine | Urban Cycling: A Tale of Two Cities

... ridership over the East River bridges (i.e., the Brooklyn, Williamsburg, Manhattan, and Queensboro bridges) has gone up 62 percent--from 2,410 to 3,875 per day--during commuter hours (7 a.m.-7 p.m.).

Yet to decrease the number of cars on its roads (a stated goal of the Bicycle Master Plan) and make for a healthier urban environment, the City will have to deliberately displace vehicles by taking away car lanes and parking spaces. Whether that will happen is to be seen, but at least, by adopting the Bicycle Master Plan and creating auto-free routes, New York is inching down the path to change.

December 12, 2003 in Cycling | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 15, 2003

Pray that there's intelligent life somewhere out in space...

...'cause there's bugger-all down here on Earth.

Yahoo! Groups : bicyclingadvocacy Subject: Ken's death

I had never visited Ken Kifer's terrific bicycle transportation pages (which were built on solar-powered laptops), but I see on Metafilter that he was hit by a drunk driver over the weekend and killed.

Didn't take long for the knuckle-draggers to appear, as the first comment was "Oh, the irony, if the drunk had a Darwin Fish bumper sticker."

And hey ... let's be careful out there.

September 15, 2003 in Cycling | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

August 14, 2003

Hard training ride

I skipped the commute ride on Wednesday, in favor of a Silver Comet Trail ride with my dad. He had to bail for work reasons, but I discovered something interesting: You can actually get to the trail from Atlanta on a bike!

I didn't, but Mapquest gave me a shortest route that was pretty much Paces Ferry Road past Home Depot world headquarters, left on Atlanta Road, right on Cooper Lake, which is the road I usually get to the trailhead on. I've ridden Paces Ferry a lot, and it's a good wide street with plenty of room for bikes, and a few major hills, especially in Vinings. It also features my favorite Atlanta street sign, the "Welcome to Buckhead" sign as you cross the Chattahoochee, miles from what most people would consider Buckhead.

Since Dad bailed, I took the ride up a notch (Bam!), and had the company of my iPod (strangest transition: Fastball's cover of "The Real Me" off Substitute: Songs from the Who to "Ironic" off Alanis Morrissette's jillion-selling angst-fest Jagged Little Pill) to help me really beat myself up.

After the ride (30-45 minutes later), I had another hypoglycemic/bonk experience, like back in December. I fell off the Atkins wagon on vacation in July, and have been back on for about 10 days now, and working out for the last 4, which is very similar to the setup when it happened in December. Since it worked last time, I downed a quick Coke, and had no further ill effects.

I ate pretty much whatever I wanted during the two weeks my family was on vacation (1 week with me, 1 week without): I had Chinese food, Mexican, pizza, Ben & Jerry's, Cokes out the wazoo, and beer, glorious beer. In two weeks, I gained 13 pounds. That is not a typo. On the other hand, in 10 days back on Atkins, I've already dropped 8 or 9 pounds of that, so I suppose it was largely the legendary "water weight".

Overall, I'm sitting at 223 or 224, 5 pounds higher than the lowest I've seen since starting Atkins, down 44-45 since November.

This morning, back to the commute ride. I'm going to try to ride on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays, although I probably won't brave anything heavier than a sprinkle.

August 14, 2003 in Atkins Diet, Cycling | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

August 11, 2003

Work to ride, ride to work: Day 1

I had almost forgotten the smug self-satisfaction that energizes your whole day when you bicycle to work.

Since there's no real insulation from your environment, riding also exposes you, to rude drivers, flat tires, the smell of honeysuckle in the spring. Today's little adventure resulted from the new tires on the trailer, causing it to shimmy something fierce. When I got to work, I reseated the tires (looked like I didn't get the bead evenly seated around the rim), and I'll know in a couple of hours if that was the problem.

I pulled the computer from the commute bike, but our preflight ride yesterday put the mileage at a little under 9 miles, and it took less than 45 minutes in either direction. Hills? Sure, this is Atlanta, so there's some up-and-down.

My route on the way home will be straight up Peachtree past the Brookhaven MARTA station, right on Dresden, which is a fairly good road for cyclists: it roughly parallels I-85, so most of the drivers are local traffic. My old commute to Coke and to CNN used Howell Mill Road, which was similarly avoided in favor of Northside Drive by drivers in a hurry.

Take Dresden across Clairmont, Buford Highway, and Shallowford, then take a right on Chamblee-Tucker, and around past Mercer University to Henderson Mill to Henderson Road. I didn't think MapQuest would like my route, but they claim it's the shortest available.

I'll be leaving my shoes at work -- I forgot how much room they take up in the trailer (I used to use a cargo net to carry shoes on top of the trailer). My bike becomes the first bike I've ever seen locked to the rack at the Pinnacle Building -- I've seen one briefly locked to a railing in the parking garage.

Looks (more accurately, sounds) like I might get wet on the trip home.

Update: Thanks to traffic on Mercer U. Drive, I took a long-cut around Mercer, and used my relative slenderness (compared to a car, at least) to lane-share my way from there. Got splashed but not rained on.

August 11, 2003 in Cycling | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

August 10, 2003

One less car

So I've put it off as long as I can, and I plan to ride to work in the morning. I preflighted the route today, and it's not bad, except close to my house, where I don't have a lot of options.

I've got my locks, my trailer, tools, riding and work clothes, etc., all ready to go.

One little item I don't have but could use is a helmet mirror ($12.95), for keeping an eye on overtaking traffic. It occurs to me, though, how much cooler it would be to use:

The iSight would be mounted on or in the trailer facing back. The PowerBook would be running EvoCam to publish the iSight picture to a mobile 802.11 network. The Tungsten C, mounted on the handlebars, would use that 802.11 network to monitor the webcam image in real time, letting me know if I need to veer to avoid the oncoming Bubba without ever cocking my neck.

All the functionality of a Lexus, but for thousands less...

August 10, 2003 in Cycling | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

May 06, 2003

Somewhere down the hairy river

This weekend, I’ll be riding a little over 200 miles on my bike, from Columbus to Portsmouth, Ohio on Saturday and back on Sunday. It’s part of the Tour of the Scioto River Valley, understandably shortened to TOSRV.

This will be my 11th time on this ride out of the last 12 (I missed it 2 years ago because Stuart was born May 7th). I have ridden every mile of every TOSRV I’ve ever started (knocks on wood), including a couple I really had no business starting, where I had trained fewer miles than the ride.

About 3000 people will be doing all or some of the ride this year, and the weather looks like it will continue the trend, making things, um, interesting. About five years ago, the East Coast had an early spring, and unseasonably warm temperatures through all of April. We drove up on Thursday, and went for a shakedown ride on Friday, 30 easy miles in shorts and jerseys, loving the sunny 75-degree weather. That night, the front blew in, and ride start temperatures were in the low 40s. Lulled by the early spring, I hadn’t bothered to pack cold-weather gear. That is a mistake I haven’t repeated. For this weekend, I’m bringing along:

  • 5 pairs of gloves: 1 heavy full-finger, 1 light full-finger, 1 knit, 2 half-finger
  • 3 short-sleeve jerseys, 1 long-sleeve jersey, 1 heavy long-sleeve jersey/jacket
  • 1 pair polypropylene lightweight long johns
  • 1 rain jacket, 2 windbreakers
  • 1 skull cap, 1 balaclava, 1 earband, 1 helmet
  • 4 pairs lightweight socks, 3 pairs Smartwool socks
  • Shoes & sunglasses
By the way, we learned in 4th-grade Ohio history that “Scioto” is the Shawnee word for “hairy”: they called the river that because so many deer bathed in the river that it was literally a hairy river.

May 6, 2003 in Cycling | Permalink | Comments (0)

October 10, 2002

Interbike makes the New York Times

nytimes.com | Big Hopes for Commuting by Bike
velonews | Interbike winding down in Vegas
velonews | Interbike: Bikes, gossip and the art of the deal

I guess I'm glad to see New York Times technology reporter John Markoff covering bicycles, but I can't really agree with his thesis: That the the sensible commuter/comfort bike represents a brand-new trend in bicycling.

The bicycle industry has been trying to make commuter bikes the 3rd standard (after mountain bikes and road-racing bikes) for several years.

Klein, which built my mountain bike, sold the Karma Pavé for 1 year, the Bianchi Milano has been available since Shimano introduced the Nexus hub (3 years?), and the Specialized Globe Markoff mentioned has already been a production bike with a near-clone from Giant.

It almost feels like Markoff talked his way to Interbike, then had to come up with something new, and germane enough to Times readers to actually make the paper. Hmmm, these would be terrific bikes for riding around New York City; I'll write about them....

October 10, 2002 in Cycling | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack