Thursday, March 06, 2008

The Domination of Nature

Perfect weather for a ride you would think. It was an unusual day for me to get out of work early and on my drive home the sun was blaring and the roads were considerably dry and I thought to myself it would be great to get in a ride outside after work for ONCE. My Power Tap arrived UPS overnight form Colorado Springs service center with a new and desperately needed battery replacement. I told myself it would be nice to take the road bike out for a ride instead of the MTB. Once I hit the door to my house I was like a little kid, so excited to get out and play. Chasing around the house to gather all the necessities I need to ride outside in thirty degree weather. Time was a waisting and sunset comes too soon at this time of year as I hurried frantically sliding in my socks on the hardwood floor nearly wiping out before I even get on the bike.

I hit the road after a few checks, tires, tube, water, phone camera, gel... I decide to take the parkway route instead of Burleigh out to Pewaukee, for some reason riding on the city streets around five o'clock rush hour does not excite me, especially when drivers are trying to avoid pot holes, I certainly would not win. I wore my winter riding jacket and just the Craft wool cold weather shirt, since it was a bit warm and I knew I would start sweating soon. I forgot that the wind is wicked cold when riding the road bike since it is much faster then the MTB and it was whipping inside my gloves and my fingers were practically numb right away. Thirty minutes into my ride I was just feeling comfortable and it looked like the sun was starting to set.
I was so excited to ride outside I did not look at my meter for awhile and as I was riding at a pretty good clip, I looked down and saw that my power was at zero to 30 Watts which was ridiculous. I pulled off to the side to try to remedy the situation and find a cause. My first thought was to blame the knuckle head who put in the new battery for he must of changed some settings by accident. I jiggled a few wires and started to ride again to see my lack of knowledge did not seem to fix the problem. Now I was getting pissed. I was so happy to be outside and ride the road bike and it was failing me and made this all the more frustrating when you want to do some interval work. So I turned around and headed back home at a furious pace to call the service center.
At least on the way back home I had a nice moderate climb to burn off some steam. I got in the door peeled off all my riding garments now full of sweat and headed upstairs to my computer. I hooked up the SRM to check the settings and they were intact, no one messed with the slope settings. I sat in front of the computer screen staring at the readings totally upset because I just wanted to ride. Luckily Ty just walked in the door from work to help me trouble shoot the situation. He had me get back on the bike after I mounted it to the trainer and start spinning. The first question he asked me was, "did you zero out the computer?" Uh, no I quietly stated. "Well try that." So I got off, zeroed out the computer and WA LA! I was back to business, THANK YOU TY! Silly Me.
It took up some motivation by now to work up the appetite to finish off the ride on the trainer since I originally had my hopes so high on a great road ride. I dug in and got to work to the music on the shuffle. I flipped towards the back end of my music library where I keep the hammer music stored and started with Front 242, Headhunter Vol 3 as I got ready for the pain. One minute into the final interval the music died and that is when I really dug deep and said WTF?
So the moral of today's story, we rely to much on technology from daylight savings time to conserve on the energy we continue to waste and all the electronics I "think" I need to have a good ride, had me pondering thoughts to a class I took in college, the philosophy of technology and where it is really taking us.


Anonymous said...

my power-meter:

"go far"
"go hard"
"go up a shitload of hills"
"go easy"

Russell said...

You turned around because the computer thingie wasn't working right?!?!?!?!?!?

Please re-read your first paragraph and tell me how you allowed that to happen. You should of just said "F-it" and continued on.

Christine said...

Yes you are correct and I should of had the MTB out so I could dodge the pot holes along with the traffic.

Anonymous said...

I think you should just ride and not worry about having all this electronic crap that you don't know how to use. Your not training for the olympics.

-jj said...

"So the moral of today's story, we rely to much on technology..."

Yup. And think of the $$ spent on an SRM.

Anonymous said...

I belive, the moral of the story should be, not to rush or you may be liable to overlook something. Not about, just get on the bike and ride or how long, fast and hard you can ride. When the fact of the matter is, we are all short on TIME. It's not about how much time you spend on the bike, but rather the quality of the ride. Todays technology allows us to focus on our rides and to exploit our weaknesses so we can get better. Unfortunately, technology can be a costly thing. It's fine if you just want to ride your bike. Everybody has their own passion for the bike. Everyone has their own goals for racing, but if your passion for bike racing is to be the best you can be, no matter if your training for the Olympics (knuckelhead), or WORS, then you better make the best of your time on the bike. If one works hard and is able to put themself in a position in life where the price of technology is not an issue, then buy all of the gadgets you want. There is nothing like having a coach on your handlebars making sure you stay true to your plan.


Anonymous said...

Ty wins the award for internialized marketing-speak. give whatever ad-man/copywriter he's been reading a raise !!

that's right tho ty - no poor sap from the first 100 years of cycling to the advent of the PM ever reached his or her potential . . . . . . . . . . .

hey, you don't happen to do triathlons, do you ?

spicyride said...

its funny that all these anonymous comments come out of the wood work to essentially tell you what you yourself concluded at the end of your blog. i enjoyed reading it irritated that you were a total nerd wasting a perfectly good ride and then happy you realized the error of your day.
i have a garmin but don't use the hr feature. i like reading the grades, speed and map.

Anonymous said...

To the coward who wants to leave anonymous comments without signatures. I suggest you do a little research on training. Wheather it be for tri's, cycling, or whatever discipline you decide to compete in, you may find that structured training is the common dominator in all. Once you get a little knowledge then you will see that my words are not from any book but from the experience I gained thru riding and training. Yes it is true that your 100 year old riders (poor saps)were able to reach their goals without gadgets and or structured plans. But lets face it, with the advent of the powermeter (or heart monitor) one is able to accurately stress the body to its limits and then to repair, thus making the athlete stronger. Yes, that's right I said athlete. If one is coached, trains regularly, and then competes (like it or not) your an athlete. So like I stated before, if one puts themself in a position in life were money is not an issue (for the gadgets) then by all means buy all the gadgets needed to put you at your fullest potential!

Tyrone Gonzalez

Coffee King (CK) said...

Peace to that. Riding is great in itself. I enjoy some rides without the gadgets but when it comes to nailing intervals, there is no substitute. Training with data as feedback (applied properly) can improve the slowest to the fastest rider out there. I can only assume that "anonymous" is lacking in knowledge, desire, and/or cash.

D A N O said...

The WORS BB is back!

How I so miss that.

MTB Girl said...

People are stupid. Do what makes you happy. If that's following your "technology" and turning around when it's not working correctly, then do that.

If there's one thing I've learned, it's that everyone is different, and different things work for different people. What's even more interesting is that sometimes those things change for that person also, what works one year doesn't always work the next. I used to be completely structured and that made me happy. Now being TOO structured makes me stressed and dissapointed I'm not reaching where I think I "should" be. At each of those points in my life, following THOSE "rules" made me happy. So who really cares? :-)

Life is about you Superfly. Do what makes YOU happy and screw everyone else. If YOU are happy, the rest of it all falls into place.

Anonymous said...

ditto that mtb girl....

your words are of true wisdom. If you're not happy, than what's the sense.