The mood is back

•June 4, 2013 • Leave a Comment

For a bit I lost my mojo, what little mojo I may have.

But the mood to ride is back.  The heat is beginning to return also.  That means I will soon need to get up early on weekdays to ride.

Last evening’s ride I went through the area where the snapping turtle was to see if (s)he had ventured back onto the road with bad consequences.  Happily there was no squashed turtle.

Today is lawn mowing day.  Boo.  At least it’s a riding mower so my legs get a rest.


Another exciting rescue

•June 2, 2013 • Leave a Comment

I once again ventured out in my guise as cycling tortoise rescuer and , uh, did good stuff.

I headed out about 7:30 a.m. via the by-pass.  Ahead I saw what I thought was a pile of trash, maybe yard waste, at the edge of the center turn lane.  But as I approached, the yard waste raised it’s head and looked at me.

This was not a box turtle.  This was not even a large land tortoise.  This was a big-ass, mud covered snapping turtle.

Of course it is my sworn duty to rescue this road bound turtle, but he, or she, was less than cooperative.  First I tried poking, or encouraging her to move along using my frame pump.  She didn’t appreciate my encouragement, demonstrating her snapping ability as well as her ability to hop.

Who knew they could hop?

Early Sunday morning there is not a lot of traffic, so no help was immediately forthcoming.   I would circle around her, trying to get behind her so I could poke her to the side of the road.  She circled right along with me, snapping every chance she got.

Finally a guy stopped.  He had a plastic milk crate in the back of his SUV.  Using that and my pump we finally got her off of the road.

I don’t think she appreciated the assistance.

I’m going to have to start carrying my little point and shoot camera in my pocket again.

If you go to the snapping turtle wikipedia page, scroll down to the second turtle picture.  It looks like her.  I keep saying ‘her’ because I suspect she was heading out to lay eggs.

I then went on and had a nice ride!

Uncooperative weather

•April 30, 2013 • Leave a Comment

That has kept me away from the bike.  Plus work.  Plus sinus.

But we are having a bit of that spring weather that sometimes seems to skip Tennessee.  (We tend to go straight from winter to summer).

I narrowly missed getting that perfect mixte I’ve always wanted.  It was a gorgeous green Raleigh that came with fenders and a rack.  Sadly, I was #2 in line.  He was only asking $100.

So now I’m using the non-rainy days to ride.  On the next rainy one, I think I’ll put on my new bar tape that sits on the kitchen table awaiting.  Hopefully it won’t look like it was put on by a drunk.


Spring at last

•April 7, 2013 • 3 Comments

Warmth finally showed itself in Tennessee.  To celebrate, I rode my newly tuned up bike.  I have a new SRAM chain with a quick link so when it gets really dirty, I can take it off to clean it.  Therefore I must get it dirty so I can try it out.

I’ve heard various methods of cleaning it off of the bike.  Soaking it in all kinds of things that seem a bit too much.  I’ll need to google that.

On other fronts, first lawn mowing of the season and I put up 5 pints of soup.


When they said it was spring

•March 29, 2013 • 1 Comment

they lied.

It’s cold.  It’s rainy.

It’s just generally crappy out.

So I broke down and took the bike in for a tune up.

My old bike shop has gone down the tubes.  Certainly their own fault as service had gone down down the tubes.  But my old mechanic, off and on for the last eight years, is the manager at Sun & Ski at Opry Mills.  Yeah, I know.  It’s a chain.  But even though he is the store manager, he will still work on my bike.  🙂  Yes, that calls for a smiley.

In fact, I could probably have it back sooner than the middle of next week, but Phillip is taking off the next couple of days and he says only he works on my bike.  I’m okay with that.  I don’t want the man to give up his days off.  They aren’t always common in retail.  & I’m flattered he wants to do it himself.

🙂  Let’s have another smiley.

So I’ll have a nice tuned up bike with a new chain by mid-week and hopefully some real spring weather.



Wicked, wicked wind

•March 16, 2013 • Leave a Comment

As I drank my coffee this morning, the weather person was promising gusty winds that may change direction as if on a whim.  She did not lie.

I meant to get an earlier start as the wind always seems a little less in the morning.  But Attack of the 50 Foot Woman came on and I just had to watch.  Plus I had to strain the chicken broth I had simmered all night long for canning this afternoon.

As I set out in a southwesterly direction, the wind did get a bit wicked as I hit the open spaces.  So I headed for lower elevations and mentally modified my route.  But Mother Nature or the wind gods or whomever thought it was time to be funny.  As I turned due north looking for the tailwinds, I got a big gust right out of the north east that almost blew me over.

I think I heard laughter.

Actually the only spot the wind was a real problem was on one long shallow hill.  The wind rolling down that hill was rather wicked and left me gasping.

Tomorrow’s forecast includes raindrops and lightening bolts so there may not be a ride.  At least not an outdoor one.

And I put up eight pints of chicken stock.

Harbingers of spring

•March 10, 2013 • 2 Comments

Harbinger is such a good word.

Time change!

Riding with exposed skin.

Big winds.

I pulled the bike off the trainer and rode!!!

Okay.  Enough exclamation points.

I ought to mention a couple of things.  The trainer seems to have improved some things, not so much others.  The most notable is cadence.  Of course you can’t really get an accurate average on the road.  But I realized that when I was steadily pedaling and not climbing, I was running at about 10 rpm higher than before.

It didn’t do a lot for endurance.  It did do some for strength.  I’ll probably be back on the trainer this week.  It doesn’t appear the weather will be cooperative.  It’s really still winter.

Shoes, toe cramps, and computers

•February 14, 2013 • 4 Comments

Still riding on the trainer using audio workouts.  It’s less than a month until the time change!

Wearing heels to the office led to toe and foot  cramps at the end of last night’s ride.  It’s very ouchy when your foot curls up and your big toe starts to point in a direction nature did not intend.  I need somebody to give foot massage.  Rubbing your own arches is not the same.  Since today is stay in the office and get some stuff done day at the office, I have dug out my Earth shoes to wear.  You remember those.

Meanwhile, my Garmin is giving some really wonky readings on trainer rides.  The MPH is just all over the place.  I mostly just look at cadence while on the trainer, which is on the second screen,  but when I switch over the readings fluctuate from 0 to the 70s.  Last nights ride featured a max speed of 75.1 mph.  Oddly, all the other metrics look right, even the average speed.  I may try a soft reset before this evening’s ride.

Happy Valentine’s Day!!!


•February 3, 2013 • Leave a Comment

I’m looking to be consistent with trainer workouts, riding five-six days a week with Fridays off.

Yesterday I rode for an hour with a workout that simulates hills.  Evil hills.

Today was a shorter half hour spin as I had bread rising.  Good bread.

My plan looking forward is for the bike to stay on the trainer for all of February.  The tires need changing and I don’t want to swap them out at this point.  Once I put on a new rear tire, it’s off of the trainer for good.

Additionally, my challenges with electronic things continues.  That’s because I’m occasionally not very bright.  I took the cadence sensor off yesterday and cleaned it because it had road crud.  I decided to put it back on further back, away from the pedals.

For this morning’s ride I couldn’t understand why I wasn’t getting a cadence reading.  Duh!

I’m going to go move it in a few minutes.

Further electronic misadventures

•January 29, 2013 • Leave a Comment

Riding the trainer does not make for exciting, or even vaguely interesting, blog posts.

However getting ready for riding on the trainer is at least vaguely interesting.

In order to ride I seem to really, really need two electronic systems, Garmin with heart rate monitor and cadence and my tablet and bluetooth headphones for audio workout.

The Garmin heart rate strap has some age on it.  Six to seven years to be not exact.  It still works great.  But the elastic portion now would fit Andre the Giant comfortably.  After the weekend sessions where it kept slipping out from under my bra, I have finally cinched it up and then did a temporary fix with a safety pin.  I need to get out the sewing machine and perform surgery on it.

Then last evening the cadence sensor started acting wonky.  I stopped and fidgeted and stopped and fidgeted until I realized I need to replace the battery which is weird surgery.  Someone decided that the battery compartment should face inwards.

So everything either has a new battery or is on the charger for this evening’s session.

I’ve also been meaning to mention, I’m tracking myself on until I get back into shape.  My screen name is susanp57 if anybody wants to friend me.

Yeah, I know.  More electronic stuff.

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