Monday, June 8, 2009

Triathlon Training Day 50: 1.2 Mile Bike + 1.2 Mile Walk of Bike Back to Car

I'd like to congratulate fellow P90Xer and now Triathlete Boomer on completing his first Triathlon yesterday! He had a great time and even completed his Tri in a very respectable time. Boomer's work ethic and choice to dedicate himself to a healthy lifestyle has been a major inspiration to me and many others. If you'd like to read more about what it was like CLICK HERE for Boomer's review.

Sorry I didn't post yesterday about my 26 mile bike ride! It was mostly out of frustration that kept me from the blog. Here is what went down:

So, I get up yesterday and have a nice protein and complex carb balanced breakfast. It is a beautiful day - not a cloud in the sky and despite the fact that it was in the 90's the humidity was bearable. I put on my cycling clothes and went out in the garage and tuned up the bike. Checked the tires, brakes, chain ..etc and then placed the bike in the back of the SUV and was on my way for a nice morning of riding.

The night before I download this map(click here)to my Garmin 305 and planned on using the GPS map feature and the virtual training since I didn't know the route and I was riding alone. After about a 20 minute drive I got to the parking area and the fun was just beginning. I pulled the bike out and the back tire was flat. Not just low. Flat. I took the tire off and could not find a hole anywhere in the tube. But I was smart enough to have an extra tube in my bag so I used it. I pumped up the tube and placed the tire back on my bike and was ready to go.

I started the Garmin and it was working perfectly! It has a map which showed me where to go and turn and I could toggle to the virtual partner. The virtual partner is a feature that allows you to "Race" against a pre-set time. For example, I set the virtual partner to ride at a pace of 17mph. If I got behind of this pace it showed the partner ahead of me. If I got ahead of the pace then it showed me as that! Very cool feature if training alone. So this was going great and then it happened. I was going down a small slope and some railroad tracks were in front of me. They were elevate tracks, maybe 5 feet higher than the road with a slope going up and another going down. I was going about 20 mph when I approached the tracks and began to slow gradually. The mistake was I slowed too gradually because I hit the tracks and at the top of the downward slope was a huge pothole which was hidden from view until it was too late. I hit this thing hard and my back tire immediately went flat. I felt the impact in my entire body and was lucky my front time missed it because I would have went over the handle bars.

So, here I sit on the side of the road. By this time the sun was high and the once beautiful day was now feeling brutal. The first thought that crossed my mine was, "I already used my spare tire ..crap!". But the second thought was, "no worries you have a patch kit!". I went through the routine of removing the tube from the tire - which I am becoming quite efficient at. It took me a minute but found the puncture hole. It was on the seam but wasn't too big - not a problem! I patched it up, while sweating profusely, and placed the tube back in the tire and grabbed my hand pump and the tire was fixed. I jumped back on the bike and started to pedal and noticed something felt weird. Well, that something was a flat back tire again! This time I was feeling a little aggravated. I went through the entire process described above again. This hole was just next to the seam but was a little larger - I must have missed it initially or so I thought. Jumped on the bike again and again the tire went flat within 3 pedals. This time I was more than agitated, I was pissed.

This time I took the entire tire and tube off the rim and inspected everything. It turns out a shard of metal from the rim was sticking up on the inside of the rim. Probably where the rim made contact with the pothole. I tried to file it down with a couple different tools with no luck. That left me with one option and that was walk it back to the car! The good news is that this back road has very little traffic because not one car passed me on my 15 minute walk to my car. Not a single darn car or truck that could have let me jump in the bed -- good to know for future rides!

I drove straight to the Kingwood Bike shop and left the bike with them. They said they could fix the wheel because it didn't appear to be bent so I told them to fix it and give the entire bike a once over. It will be there until Thursday or Friday.
My Bike is a low quality bike at best (bike pic). I didn't pay alot for it and with the amount of riding I have been doing I am beginning to realize I need something more reliable. Obviously, the pothole would have screwed up a lot of bikes but I have had other problems as well. Mostly flats and slow leaks of the tube. I could purchase better wheels and solve most of my problems but this would be like polishing a turd. I'd rather invest the money into a better overall bike. Here is what I am thinking about: Jeff's Next Bike

The problem is these bikes are expensive. After reading Boomer's review of his first triathlon today I am pretty convinced that I may want to do a few more. If I want to do a few more than a new bike is going to be needed. I get back from Spain on July 11th and if I am not too tapped out financially from that trip I may have to pull the trigger on the Quintana Roo. And, Yes, that just happened. I just reasoned my purchase of a new bike right. That was supposed to be in my head! American consumerism at it's finest!

Today I am going to go running.

Thanks for Reading,



  1. Jeff...dude. I'm SO there with your story! Imagine doing that walk back to your car wearing bike cleats!

    ...and that Quantano Roo is a beautiful bike! It probably weighs next to nothing.

  2. Steve, This cycling crap is very annoying at times. Seems like i spend more time fixing the bike than riding it! I can't imaging doing that walk in clipless shoes -- that would really suck!

    Oh and the QR Tequlio, I am fixated on it. Which if you haven't noticed from my blog, when I become this way about something (P90X, Triathlon) I can't focus on anything else.

  3. ...that's because you're slowly developing into a gear-head. Don't worry, its a compliment!

    I've seen these symptoms before.

    First, you have to have the bike. After that, it's the matching jersey, shorts, shoes, socks, helmet and gloves. Then you have to have the roof-rack with fairing. Next, you have to get the Volvo Wagon or VW Passat that goes with the roof rack. But don't commit the cardinal sin of putting a Yakima rack (made in USA) on a European car...a huge rookie mistake. Go with a Thule (pronounced Too-lie...not thool) which is made in Sweden.

    After all that, then you buy the mechanics bike stand, all the tools and torque wrenches, parts-wash basins, Shimano flag to hang in the garage....then you get the separate garage to house all of your bike stuff. Or you move the wife's car out into the driveway to make room, a common compromise I've seen.


  4. Jeff... First of all, thanks for the shout out.

    Wow, what a bummer! The flat tire thing is really annoying. I now carry 2 spare tubes in my kit. However, that wouldn't have helped since the wheel was re-puncturing the tire. I would have been pretty angry at the situation too. Its a good thing you weren't like 8 or 10 miles out!

    I like that Quintana! I am like you and I get fixated on things like that too. Must be a "man-thing"! The cost is pretty reasonable. My Trek cost only $500 less than that. Had I known I was going to do triathlons at the time, I would have gotten one of those instead. Now I want one. That is all that is going to be on my mind now... thanks pal!

  5. boxcar... now that is funny!!! Btw, I got Thules for my ocean Kayaks. However, they are on my Nissan Frontier. How does that workout? Am I a dork?

    Btw, I have been thinking about getting rack-stand for the back of my pick-up to transport my bike. I have BAS... Bike Acquisition Syndrome.

    After Jeff showed me that Quintana my BAS is going through the roof!

  6. Boomer...I saw Jeff's picture and even I started thinking about getting into cycling again! That's one slick ride! That pic alone activated my long-dormant BAS!

    Now, having Thule's on a Japanese vehicle doesn't appear in my protocol manual...but as long as you have at least one paddling bumper sticker per kayak carried, I think you're safe!

  7. Steve, that is some funny stuff! We are calling it BAS now! I drove past the LBS shop yesterday that has the Quintana Roo and I stopped again just to look at it. The shop owner said he would "let it go" for $1400 and would include the proper fitting and a few other accessories. When I get back from Spain I might not be able to contain myself anymore!

    Sounds like you are getting the bug again too!

  8. Boomer ..sorry for the!

    Some friendly advice: Don't take one for a test ride! I did last week in the parking lot and the fixation is beyond bad right now.

    Also, I just bought a Triathlon Bag with a seat on it ... I am out of control .. it was at ....65% off orig price!

  9. Boomer ..sorry for the!

    Some friendly advice: Don't take one for a test ride! I did last week in the parking lot and the fixation is beyond bad right now.

    Also, I just bought a Triathlon Bag with a seat on it ... I am out of control .. it was at ....65% off orig price!