Thursday, July 28, 2011

Am I Nuts?

Yesterday, I drove my car, down to Virginia to check out a bike.  It was 213 miles each way.  It was a beautiful cycling day and I hated to waste it in the car, but for me, it was for a good reason.  I have been wanting to add a Tour Easy Gold Rush to my stable.  The problem is they come in 6 sizes and cost a boat load.  I needed to check my size carefully before dropping so much money.  I found what appeared to be a nice used one at a reasonable price on the web.  The bike was a big disappointment.  It was way too big and did not look well cared for.  Fortunately, the shop owner had other GR sizes in stock and I got to check out more bikes.  I was finally able to get on a small and take it for a test ride.  I never road a Tour Easy before but new of their outstanding reputation.  To cut to the chase, I was not feeling the love.  Besides the bike being a bit too small for me, I found the ride too upright and not as comfortable as my old Stratus.  After all was said and done, I thanked the shop owner for his time, and drove the 200+ miles home.
If I tell this story to non cycling enthusiasts, they would say I am nuts.  For me it was time well spent learning what I like and dislike about potential bike purchases.  I wonder how many other cycling enthusiasts have done the same.
Keep Riding!!!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Out of the Heat?

It has been brutal out there. Not just in NJ, but throughout the country. Record breaking temps in the triple digits has made cycling almost impossible. I have gone out for short 3-7 mile utility runs and also tried to do short 20 mile rides. Both of which have made me feel exhausted, foolish, and down right dangerous. Luckily I have air-conditioning and a pool to cool off in. Today, on the other hand, we had a break in the weather. temps down into the 80's with overcast skies making riding somewhat bearable. I managed a 36 mile ride, but in all honesty I did not feel the love I had hoped. My body has not recovered from all this heat and it will take some time before I recharge. Tomorrow, I am working and the weather looks promising, but I think I will leave my bike and commute by car.
Taking a break so I can,

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Take The Lane

I have been riding my Fuji more.  It is a great commuting bike and works for quick jaunts to the store.  Initially, I found it to be quite slow, but as time went on I became faster.  I guess my recumbent leg muscles  had to readjust to conventional biking.  What else I have noticed is riding 2 wheeler's, recumbent or not, do not make cars congenial.  What I mean is cars do not give you any room.  They try to squeeze you to the side.  On my trike they can't judge as well and give me an extremely wide berth when passing or will not pass until they safely can.  They are not always happy about that, but, they give me the room I deserve.  On my Fuji I do not feel as safe and find I have to watch out more for passing cars.  I have had cars come so close they raise the hair on my skin.  In addition I have had cars pass me at blind spots.  I can certainly understand peoples insecurity when riding a bike on traffic roads.  As a cycling advocate and knowing we have the same rights as motor vehicles, I have learned to drive both offensively and defensively.  Initially I thought keeping to the right was the best safety measure you could do.  I have since learned this is not always the case.  You have to leave yourself room from impending danger like potholes, gravel, parked car doors opening etc.  If I feel safety is an issue I will move out into the lane to keep cars from passing at an inopportune moment.  It not only saves my life, but, also the driver of the vehicle that may not see as clearly what dangers lay up a head.  THINK SMART, RIDE SMART and BE SAFE.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Picture Perfect Day

Blue Skies

Of course I helped him across the road

Scenic road
Today was one of those picture perfect days.  Temps in the low to mid 80's, low humidity, minimal wind and plenty of sunshine.  A Marty Day as I like to call it.  After the July 4th holiday weekend it was a refreshing and relaxing day that brings a smile to you face without a care in the world.  I am fortunate to have these scenic roads just 2 miles from my home.

'Third time's the charm'

This is used when the third time one tries something, one achieves a successful outcome.
On Saturday July 2, I commuted to work on my bike.  As you may recall the 1st time it rained heavily about 3 miles from work.  I was soaked but, luckily my place has a laundry facility so I was able to dry out.  My second commute resulted in heavy down poor with hail and lightening just as I left work.  Lucky to be alive.  My latest and 3rd commute resulted in a beautiful relaxing ride to and from work.

Monday, July 4, 2011

"I Thought of that while riding my bicycle" Albert Einstein

He also said once: “Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.”
Now that the pink cloud of GOBA is fading it's time to move on.  I traditional ride my bike by myself.  This leaves me with time to think.  Some of which is what my next blog will be about.  Sometimes I come up with a bike idea, like new light mounts for my Fuji.  They are completed and awaiting further testing.  I try to concentrate on my beautiful surroundings and let my cares go by.  This is not always possible and I can find myself focused on some problem.  I have to remind myself that the simplistic joy of riding is what helps get me through life's challenges.