Sunday, May 11, 2014

Riding the 700

It's hard not to want to go fast and push myself when riding the 700. I enjoy keeping up or passing other cyclists while on my rides. I know that some of them take a strike to their ego when an old guy on a tricycle passes them. It shows in their body language as they lean forward a little more and start to rise off their seat to get a bit more power. What can I say old guys need to get their kicks and I do it while riding my 700. But I need to slow down...just a little.

My legs are getting stronger as I slowly break in my new hips. However I do pay a price for pushing a little too hard on my rides. The hips get sore and I have to take it easy for a day or two. On the last couple of rides I made up my mind not push hard and I put my head and body into cruise control. The rides turned out to be the most enjoyable rides I've had since my hips went titanium. As it turned out my average miles per hour suffered by less then 10% and the hip  soreness was minimal. The only real difference in my riding style was taking the hills a little easier by gearing down more then usual and I avoided pushing hard to make a signal or to pass another cyclist. Just keep a nice steady rhythm. Also when stopped by a signal I'm now in the habit of gearing really low so my take off is easy with minimal pressure on my hips. From the time the signal turns green and I'm through the intersection I'll have geared up through 4 to 5 gears. The SRAM 500 bar end shift levers make shifting easy and fast.

The facts (nothing special but for me it's pretty good): Since my hip replacements my rides are generally short, less then 15 miles. The average gain is 500 feet. That hasn't changed. The change is in my average miles per hour along the same route (more or less). It went form 15.5mph to an average of 14.5mph.

I ride 3 to 4 times a week.  I'll continue to keep the pace steady when riding the 700 and focus on adding more miles.

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