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Archive for the 'ride' Category

Countdown to 30: Sculpture Park Loop

Posted by @teeheehee on 10th May 2009

This weekend’s ride started on Saturday morning. I began it a bit later in the morning while I waited for some rain to pass and, as designed, the ride was shorter than last week’s. After the rain moved on it became a very nice day, and perhaps a bit too nice as I opted not to put on any sunscreen and now have somewhat reddened shoulders and arms to remind me to apply it in the future.

I chose a Minuteman Bikeway extension ride that went from the Bedford end and hit Walden Pond and the DeCordova Museum and Sculpture Park. I haven’t been to either location and have been wanting to visit each for the last few years. Added bonus: Hanscom Airforce Base – the first airport I’ve ridden to.
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Countdown to 30: New Acquaintances and a Metric Century

Posted by @teeheehee on 4th May 2009

When I began my training for my upcoming century ride I recognized in the back of my mind the need for a contingency plan.

I had no idea how feasible it would be for me to build up to and actually ride 100 miles before June. I now think I am in a very good position to do that in the next couple of weeks, but I still feel it necessary to have a “fallback” ready.

For example: what if my bike breaks down? What if I hurt myself training and can’t do the ride? Maybe the weather will turn for the worst and blizzards will strike every weekend until June. (Hey, it’s New England, it doesn’t hurt to consider every weather possibility.) If something happens and I can’t do the full 100, how will I cheat/accomplish my goal and not bruise my precious ego too much?

Here is where I rationalize things and conclude that a one-off solution can be, under the right circumstances, considered a successful completion of task. If it comes down to it a metric century, which is to say 100 kilometers or roughly 62 miles, would “count” as achieving my goal if I found 100 miles to be out of reach.

Well, today I feel very good (and a bit weary.) Yesterday (Sunday) I achieved a major milestone in my training which accomplished my contingency plan by completing a metric century. Actually I managed to do a bit more and clocked in 68.35 miles for the day. Woo hoo!
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Countdown to 30: Nagog Pond Loop

Posted by @teeheehee on 25th April 2009

This week I was not at a loss for weekend ride options.

On the one hand I had a list of Pocket Rides that include some loops at either end of the Minuteman Bikeway. These rides have the advantage of both partial familiarity (Bikeway) and complete newness, plus there are comments about what to expect in hills and attractions.

On the other hand I could join one of the Bikes not Bombs group rides that are meant for training for their 62-miler coming up in June’s Bike-a-thon. I participated in last year’s 25-mile ride, which I rode 35 miles of and still didn’t finish. (I got waylaid in the last mile, twice, and ended up needing to be picked up. To my defense, it was 95+ degrees F that day.) I am still trying to find other interested people to join my team, “BikeMe”, so I have yet to sign up for this year’s ride. I’m also thinking of going for the 62-miler, so these training rides would really help me prepare for that.

It was at about 10AM this morning that I made my mind up, I was going to go with a Pocket Ride suggestion: Nagog Pond Loop. This starts at the Bedford end of the Minuteman and goes for about 30 miles though Carlisle, Acton, and Concord. Nagog Pond itself is in Acton.
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Countdown to 30: A Marathon Interjects

Posted by @teeheehee on 20th April 2009

Training for the Century Ride means doing long rides in a progressively increasing manner up until the max event. I need to do a long ride every weekend which can be troublesome during the New England spring. In short, the weather won’t always be pretty, but I intend to be out there doing my thing anyways.

This past week I got more serious about my cycling passion with the purchase of some solid rain gear. Up until now I’ve worn nothing outright protective for rainy conditions, I’ve just trusted that I packed an extra outfit to change into when I get to a sheltered place, which was usually within 30 minutes.

This method breaks down on long rides. For qualification I generally consider any ride that is more than an hour long to be a “long ride”. Long rides may subject you to unpleasant conditions which were never an issue for me last summer; it used to be any ride would have been rescheduled to guarantee fair weather.

So I made some purchases during the week and now have cyclist-oriented rain pants and coat, fingered gloves with an optional second layer that adds more protection, and somewhat unrelated some Pocket Rides maps which I was planning on using to plot my long rides.

In some respects I feel a bit under prepared for the Century still. I am still forming logistics for all the rides leading up to, and including, the Century. I already have a couple of the Pocket Rides packs which have won me over for the simplicity, completeness, and presentation they offer. The new ones add rides that start and stop at either end of the Minuteman Bikeway. I thought to myself: “great – I can combine last week’s Minuteman 30-miler with one of these to make a longer ride, slowly building my base distance while keeping some things familiar which can make the time go by a little easier.”

Or, maybe not….
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Countdown to 30 starts with 30

Posted by @teeheehee on 12th April 2009

This June I will be turning 30, one of those benchmark years that suddenly makes me no longer a 20-something by simple definition.

Since turning 29 I have been trying to think of things to do that would somehow cap my 20’s much like graduating high school and moving to Boston did for my teen years. Graduating college counts towards that, but I wanted something more recent to feel that I am continuing to grow and define myself.

I lagged through about half of my 29-hood without coming up with something. I said to myself: “Self, I need to have a personal achievement that I can attain before my age becomes evenly divisible by the first five values of the Fibonacci sequence.”

And so at the start of winter I decided it was high time I rode a Century – my first personally propelled 100-miles in a single day.

This, I knew, would be a challenge for me and I’d need to improve certain personal aspects in order to achieve it.
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Weekend Roundup 20090322: Stories

Posted by @teeheehee on 22nd March 2009

This will wrap up my overloaded three-part weekend roundup: stories.
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Community Solar System Ride: a bust! :-(

Posted by @teeheehee on 3rd September 2008

Two weekends ago Sunday I attempted a ~60 mile ride: go to and take roughings of all of the Museum of Science’s Community Solar System planet kiosks (including Pluto the Plutoid.)

I should have known something was up when the MoS updated  their website and no longer offered for download the “passport,” nor made available the pages detailing the Community Solar System project at all.

But that didn’t deter me! I downloaded that passport file weeks ago, and I had worked diligently on finding somewhat feasible biking routes (more on that in a bit.) I forged ahead – the ride would not be thwarted just because the new website doesn’t have the Community Solar System project listed anymore!

Well, here is what I started with: Pluto, at the platform of the Riverside T Stop, Green D Line.

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Back in the saddle, Community Solar System

Posted by @teeheehee on 17th July 2008

So, I went on an early-summer trip to Italy for a couple of weeks. That happened a while ago now and I haven’t written anything since before leaving.

It’s taken me a while to get back into the various rhythms, and, well, the weather’s been more or less quite good so I’ve been riding a good deal! Riding > writing.

I’m working on a ride for personal enjoyment, it will be my longest single ride to date. In the Boston area is a scaled down model of the solar system (including Pluto as a planet,) called the Community Solar System. It’s centered around the Sun at the Museum of Science and spans out to as far as Newton. The distances for all of the kiosks with the planets is scaled so that walking speed is the equivalent of light speed when factored up. It’s a really neat idea, and I like it.

So far I’ve come up with a general map, starting from Pluto and working my way back into the city. There are a few more inner-system planets I’ll hit before some outer-system ones, just to keep the ride to something more sensible.

If the ride goes well for me I’ll do it again and invite others to join, but as there are some questionable navigation legs and since I’m not very familiar with the area very much, and since I’ve never lead a ride before, I hesitate to include anyone else in my crazy schemes as of yet.

So, hopefully the weather will be excellent this weekend, because since I’ve started working on this ride I’ve lost sleep thinking about it. I can’t say why I like the idea so much, I’m just a geek I guess.

[edit] Looks like fortune was not in my favor. Saturday was in the 90’s and today is sketchy. On top of that I’ve become inflicted with a summer cold (of all things!) so I’ve been more out of commission than usual.

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