I wasn’t sure I’d make it, but I did. Got my Spot singlespeed belt-drive mountain bike together, and today was the first commute with it that took me up Lungbuster Hill. No problem at all. Ok, a slight problem, but I made it.
I’m sure I’m a little stronger, but I’m also sure my technique is better. As my buddy Dave said, I’d get better at it, and it’s been part of my routine commute for more than a month now. With the Spot, I’m up over the handlebars more, and keeping a fairly steady pace. I visualize being towed up the hill, and it seems to help. It wasn’t what I’d call easy, but it was doable, and not as bad as some of my earlier attempts, even with the ‘cross bike.
The only hill I couldn’t do was a very short, very steep climb out of Mill Creek to cross the road by where the OldTimers cabin is. It’s very hard even in my lowest gear on the ‘cross bike, and it’s currently not possible on the Spot. Hopefully one day it will be, but I’m not sure.
Speaking of the ‘cross bike – the plan is to get it on the trainer this winter. I’ve got a line on a virtual reality trainer at a steep discount. It has to be a big discount, or I’d never even consider one of these. The Tacx Fortius allows me to race against people online, or ride real courses. It has a braking mechanism that simulates the effort to go up a hill (like I need more of that), and it actually spins the wheel so I can glide downhill. There are real life videos of Tour de France stages, and other famous rides. Or there are “video game” type races. Or I can load in actual routes from my Garmin GPS and race against myself, or ride on other peoples routes.
It already works with Google Maps, but the scoop I got from the distributor was that soon I’d be able to ride my bike through any city with the Google street view. Imagine being able to ride through New York, or race through Los Angeles. Takes the boredom out of training, which is the main barrier for people like me.
If I score it, I’ll be setting up a real training schedule, and should be in shape to try some races by next year.
Filed under: Bike Commutes |