Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Swim and a Bike... Almost an Aquabike

Today my plan was to get in the water for a swim.  I hadn't swum in about a month, and oh yeah, I'm racing an Olympic on Saturday.  So I went to the Y, which is near work.

And they have no day rate to just get in to use the pool for the day.  It's a monthly membership or bust.

So I went to Willamalane which was highly recommended by everyone important I know, even though it's farther away.  

Except that I went to the rec center with the climbing wall and not to the pool.  So I went to the pool.

And they said they were having team practices until after 6PM, and they weren't the open lap pool.  That was in yet another location.

So I went there, and in the fourth location (fourth!) I was finally able to pay a day rate, get a locker key, and go jump in the water for a swim.

Interestingly, my swim time is actually faster when I don't kick at all and just use my arms.  I timed myself several times, and it's true... when I use just my arms and no kick, my swim time is 16-20 SECONDS FASTER for 50 meters than it is when I kick.

I might have to get the tri shop coach to help me straighten this out.

After a 45 minute swim where I completely lost track of how far I was going, I headed out for more.  I had my bike on my car, since I had taken it to the mechanic to have the cadence meter adjusted and to talk about gears.

My new favorite mechanic adjusted the cadence, and talked gears, indeed.  Essentially, this bike is so much more bike than I am that I have a ton of room to grow, and I need to get used to it.  I felt I had run out of gears yesterday, because I would click and it felt like nothing was happening.

So I decided to take her on a little ten-mile spin to see how she is settling in... I clicked for my gears.  Again, it felt like nothing happened.  I was alone on the road, so I took the chance to look down at my gears as I clicked... and they moved!

But I felt nothing.

I clicked again.  They moved.


Basically, I had not spun out my gears.  I had only used about half my gears on the Hutch's ride yesterday, because I stopped clicking when I couldn't feel it moving anymore.

But in reality, the shifting is so smooth that you can't feel a damn thing when you shift.  It's like shifting through soft butter.  I can feel a solid shift when I shift my front derailleurs, and a little when I come off the biggest ring in the back.

And that's it.

Considering that wonky and annoying shifting was one of my prime complaints on my old bike, I am just a little bit in heaven right now.  And I just might add the mechanics to my Christmas card list, because sending flowers would be really weird.

My computer says my mph was northwards of 20mph.  I sure hope I have it calibrated right because I'm feeling a little vain today.  And I'm definitely not posting hard numbers for a few weeks, because my mother reads this and will faint if she discovers my real speeds.

But let's just say it is so fast going downhill and so smooth that I haven't yet been comfortable enough to open up and let her fly.  But I bet I can get that lady up to 50mph on a ride sometime.

And no, I don't know what her name is yet.  I'm sure she's a girl bike, but names come slowly.  The Bambino was a boy bike and I had him for 2 years before he earned his name.  So be patient, unless it is bad luck to ride a bike without a name.

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