Winter Riding Solution


With the temperatures -1c and below and the winds 25-50 km/h lately, indoor trainer has been a great solution. 


By combining the Kurt Kinetic with TrainerRoad on my computer I have a Virtual Power Meter and can simulate any desired training ride.  

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Paris-Brest-Paris Training Trailer

I am training to ride in the 2015 Pairs-Brest-Paris 1200km ride that must be completed in 90 hours or less. This is my first video with the GoPro HD Hero2 video camera. Hope you enjoy. You can follow my progress here over the coming months. This is my fun trailer.

I plan on riding the PBP on a recumbent tadpole trike, that will look something like this one below.



Rocky Butte - Portland Oregon

Barbara from the OHPV forum rented me one of her trikes to use while in Portland. The Greenspeed clone was originally built with e-power and is heavier than the trikes I test rode earlier last week at Coventry Cycle. I am happy to have any trike to ride while here and am grateful for Barbara’s generosity.

Portland is crisscrossed with bike paths. See sample map below. I rode each morning around the north east part of the city and lengthened my rides each day.



 Today I decided to climb Rocky Butte (177m) as you can see from the elevation graph above. The following photo was taken from the top looking out over the city, before the long fast decent back to the B&B. 



Note the thick steel plate behind the seat where the original motor was mounted for electric assist up the hills.

We move further south tomorrow to another B&B on Hawthorne Ave for a few days before the Writers Conference. I look forward to triking around the south east part of the city each morning.

New Personal Best - 88km at 30km/h avg speed

I am gradually increasing my distances in preparation for the Paris-Brest-Paris 1200 km ride in 2015. Today was going to be a 75+km day, but that was conservative. We ended up riding 88km.

My neighbor Ian and I  left Blue Rocks and rode along the water through Maders Cove to The Biscuit Eater in Mahone Bay. Stopped for a cappuccino and split a biscuit. The caffeine helped us up the 97m Blockhouse hill. We crossed over the 103 a few kilometers further and continued over the rolling hills to the RCMP office in Bridgewater. Rode in along the river and crossed on the new bridge to King Street and headed to the LaHave Bakery. We thought we would have a tail wind along the river, since we had ridden against the wind all morning, but the wind shifted again to hit us in the face. Up to Bridgewater I was able to pull my share but after Bridgewater my legs were beginning to feel the extra distance. Luckily Ian pulled most of the way to Lahave and we stopped for a break (lemonade and half slice of pizza each). The scallop boat was in and we stopped to watch them unload. We caught the ferry and my legs began to cramp on the way to Rose Bay. Stopped at the Rose Bay store for a banana and Gatorade to replace potassium and electrolytes. Felt strong for the next several kilometers and pulled again against the wind. We finally had a short section with the wind to our backs and then the wind shifted again and I followed Ian into the headwind. We took a leisurely pace through Lunenburg in expectation of Rye Hill and rode all the way to Blue Rocks in another head wind. 

My iPhone battery died at 71 km. Ian and I were averaging 30 kph to that point, a new personal best for distance ride. I would like to get my average speed above 30 kph consistently before I start riding with the Randonneurs Nova Scotia for the upcoming 120km, 160km, and 200km rides starting in September. 

Note: Map and elevation chart are interactive.

New Shoes and Clips = 2kph avg Increase



Bought new Shimano M162 shoes and Shimano PD-M540 SPD pedals yesterday in Halifax at CycleSmith and today increased my average speed by almost 2 km/h over the Blue Rocks - Stonehurst Loop. It feels good to be clipped in again and being able to push and pull with my legs. Time for spinning practice. 

50 km ride with and against the wind...

Woke this morning to 18-20km winds from the ESE, but it is Sunday and I wanted to do a long ride. The counter-clockwise route to Riverport was just over 50km. That sounded like a good round number. I had a good rest last night and felt well. This would be my longest ride in over a decade. I enjoyed long-distance cycling when living in the South and look forward to riding with the Randonneurs Nova Scotia group in preparation for the 2015 Paris-Brest-Paris ride. 

The short ride to The Point in Blue Rocks prepared me for the wind ahead that would increase over the next several hours. The the back wind helped the ride into Lunenburg, but I realized I would have to ride back that way against the stronger wind. I told Pamela I would make a decision in town whether to complete the loop or not. If the wind was too strong I would be back in an hour, if not then a little over 2 hours if I could maintain 24kph over the entire route. 

Grimm Road was easier than expected because trees blocks the wind until I reached Middle LaHave at the 18 km mark. The ride for the next 9 kms was into the wind. I lowered myself into the dropped bars to become a little more aerodynamic and continued to peddling to Rose Bay. I realized that the charge on my iPhone/GPS battery was declining quickly. Stopped in at the Rose Bay market for a food break and to lower the phone’s brightness and turn off all non-essential apps. I did not feel the wind until the 40km mark by Frank’s Corner Automotive. My average speed dropped and the phone died at the 44.4 km mark. I was averaging 23.55 up to that point. 

I rode into the wind along Blue Rocks Road and tried to keep up my average but have to assume I was at least a minute behind my past times. Surprisingly, I felt better at the end than I expected. The spinning class on the cruise was a big help. 

Next week: intervals.

Back Home on the Bike

Returned home Sunday from our trip to Europe. Still have several more photos and posts to upload. Yesterday was a rest day and this morning  was the first time back on the bicycle. I did a short 12km loop and cut 2:44 off previous best time. The spinning classes on the cruise were a big help. I avoided adding pounds on the cruise and still ate too many desserts. 

NOTE: map above is interactive. 

Spinning at Sea


I took my first of four spinning classes with almost a dozen other cyclists. It was my first time spinning seriously with an instructor. Each class is an hour long and includes intervals, sprints, hill climbing, and a few 60% pedaling rests.

I found it very realistic in imitating the climbs and descents of a real ride. Increasing the resistance and standing on the pedals really worked the quads. I really want to learn how to spin efficiently again. I still feel I am spinning a square rather than a circle.

Biscuit Eater Closes Today

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Source: Watercolor by Leslie Snidal

The Biscuit Eater in Mahone Bay closes today. I rode the bike over and Pamela meet me there. The place was hopping as friends from all over the province came to say goodbye to a community icon. We all had a tea or coffee and one of the famous biscuits and mourned the loss of our favorite gathering place. 

Rumor is there may be hope of a buyer, we cross our fingers and hope. Though we know whatever comes will not be the same, but hopefully different in a good way. Dawn, Alden, Patterson, Deb, Jo, and Robin thank you for so many wonderful memories and good times.

New Personal Best



Today I topped both hills on my Hill Training Loop. The new Trek road bike gearing is more efficient and smoother than the Raleigh Hybrid. I do miss the 28/30 granny gear of the hybrid for spinning up a hill. But surpassingly I was able to power up both hills today and only time and more miles will make it even easier. My average speed has increased 4 km/hr. Looking forward to a few long rides this weekend.

New concept bike from Parlee Cycles that shifts with your thoughts. Another use of your iPhone.

New Road Bike



Tomorrow I pick up a Trek 1.5 road bike at the Bike Barn in Lunenburg. Al recommended it as a good road bike to train on, while I get back in shape from the winter. I would like to participate in the Paris-Brest-Paris randonneur in 2015 on a tadpole trike, like the one below.



Paris-Brest-Paris is a 1200 km self-supported ride that must be completed in 90 hours or less. I know I would never finish on a traditional bicycle, but believe it would be possible on a trike. Having read the experiences of others, I am excited to begin training for this long distance event. So if you see me struggling up a hill in the county somewhere, please give me at least a meter of separation, and understand I hope to speed up on the downhill side.

Broken Derailleur



Climbing the hill into town, on my way to the Bike Barn, I broke bracket connecting the derailleur to the frame. Luckily Pamela was in town and picked the bike and I up. I dropped it off with Al at the Bike Barn. He has ordered a new bracket and will add bar ends to the handlebars and a thinner seat (used).

In the mean time, I will ride Pamela’s bike. It is also a Raleigh Detour 4.5 and only slightly smaller. Back on the road tomorrow.