Wednesday, December 19, 2007

I think the Weather Widget is funny...

I'm about to head out but it doesn't look -13C! What's up with the silly widgets anyway...

The Bike I Want...

When I was riding through Sausalito on Saturday with Kieran we stopped off at Mikes Bikes to pick up some new tubes (and eventually a tire - the cause of all the punctures) I had a look around the shop. I got to see the bike I really want - the Specialized S-Works Tarmac SL 2. It's amazingly light, lightest stock bike I've ever lifted. The frame was a little different then the one in the photo, naked carbon (to save 100-200grams) with a little white and had the full SRAM Red gear on it. The new cassette locked trick.

They also had the new S-Works Epic there - since I have had a 2007 for a while, it seemed a little less exotic to me.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Back Home Again

The final two spins in California went pretty well. On Saturday my brother and I headed from San Francisco up Mount Tam. To get there though, 4 punctures were had (not me :)) at the start but after that all was good apart from me. I felt pretty bad – thought I was going hard and I would like down and my heart rate was 118... Kieran's (who is usually 7-10 beats less then me) was way higher then mine so I knew something was up. I felt a lot better from about 1:40 into the ride, basically when we started climbing up Mount Tam. Originally, I thought it was just tiredness from the week of long rides but I'm thinking now it was due to the lousy food I ate the day before...

Proof that I did have nice weather (at times)

The obligatory Golden Gate picture (I think the lens made it look so foggy)

The Mount Tam route

Profile for the ride - my HR just does not look right... Light blue is Zone 1...

The next day was my first (full) A-Ride. The route took us up Kings Mountain and West Old la Honda, both climbs I know well and enjoy. From the start of the days ride I felt much better then yesterday and could ride reasonably strong claiming both KOMs for the day. (My brother and I crested the last together) To be fair though, no one (including me) was actually trying – it is December after all.

Now I'm back in Ireland again – I went on a tootle recovery mountain bike ride today on almost dry trails, it was sweet. Felt pretty squirrelly though – I guess that's what riding a road bike for two weeks does to you...

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Time in California...

So what have I been up to recently – let me see... At the moment I'm in California drumming up contracts for my new software consultancy company (similar to Edgespace) and enjoying some of the sunshine (but not the cold). As usual, I took my road bike with me and, as usual, the fine staff in Heathrow Airport decided that it is best not to put the bike on the same flight as me. That's 4 trips in a row that my bike has sat in London for at least an extra day! Ahh well, maybe BA will bump me again...


Seeing as I wasn't going to have a bike/helmet for the first day (or two...) I picked up a new Giro Atmos from Performance bike shop at the fine low price of $106 and headed out on my brothers LeMond – it's a lot more comfortable then my Aluminium S-Works E5 road bike but not quiet as stiff – I think I would rather something a little more comfortable for the 100km+ rides on Irish roads. My bike arrived 28 hours after me and since then, when not working, I've been going on long, reasonably steady spins. Probably the highlight of which was Wednesday's group ride that consisted of male/female pro's and the independently wealthy unemployed. A very steady 135km with a coffee/pan au chocolate stop half way around :) If was cold, but the sun and dry roads made it my kind of winter riding.

The long group ride

My brother, Kieran, also roped me into taking part in my first Cyclocross race. There was me thinking I had finished racing for the year, let alone racing in shorts and a t-shirt and then this opportunity arose. I had been trying to give myself a rest from racing but it was just too tempting to give it a miss – I also dearly miss the buzz of racing. The race itself was pretty good fun. About 45 minutes of pain with 50 other people - a terrible start from the back row meant that I had a lot of passing for the remainder of the race and as I did a 4 hour mountainous spin the day before my legs had no snap, but I still enjoyed it in some twisted way... I guess I'm going to have to take part in the Irish National CX champs on January 6th. There is also a race on December 30th pretty close to my home town which I might try to get to.


It was faster to run - honest ;)

Tomorrow I'm heading with my brother up Mount Tam and the surrounding area and on Sunday I'll be doing the Alto Velo A-Ride... After that, it's back onto a plane for the long flight home.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Photo Albums...

I'm finally getting around to putting up some photos from our Tanzanian trip... There are some from Dar es Salaam, Kilimanjaro and Zanzibar

Mel and I with our guides at the top of Kilimanjaro

I plan on putting up some more pictures and a bit of text about the rest of our trip soon.