Friday, December 27, 2013

2013 El Tour de Tucson

Oh, hey!  A month ago I rode in the 2013 Tour de Tucson.  I did this ride in 2011 and did the 85 mile route.  This time, I decided to do the whole enchilada which was 107 miles.  While I'm glad I finished, it was the most miserable I've ever been on a bike.  That's saying something since I rode the 2012 MS Bike in Arizona where it snowed and sleeted the entire first day.

This was the first year in 31 years that it rained for El Tour.  And not only did it rain, but it rained constantly for about the first 7.5 hours of my 8 hour ride.  It was cold and wet, and any thought of pace lines and high speeds were immediately put out of just about everyone's mind very quickly.

I finished the ride in a bit over 8 hours.  I must say I was not happy with that time, but I was excited that I didn't give up.  I will admit that there were times that I thought about it.  I was also excited that I avoided saddle sores for the entire ride.  Hooray!

Anyway, it was a miserable day until the last 30 minutes when the sun popped and it actually became a nice day.  Too bad it waited so long.  Oh well...

What a day for a ride!

It was so beautiful today that I just had to figure out a way to get out on my bike.  Unfortunately, the Synapse has a flat and I just can't get myself psyched to fix it, especially since it seems like something in the tire keeps puncturing the tube but I just can't find it.  The fact that it's the rear tire makes it even worse.

Therefore, it was a day for the LHT.  The excuse I used was that I had to run up and pick up a prescription at CVS.  The results were awesome; it was just as nice a ride as I expected it would be.

I guess there are some benefits to living in Scottsdale, eh?

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

New upgrades ordered

Well, I've finally scraped together enough StayFit money to upgrade my shoes and pedals.  I've placed a special order at my LBS for a pair of Shimano SH-R320 road shoes and a pair of Shimano Ultegra pedals.  Hopefully, they will be in any time and I can get them installed soon.

I was looking at a number of different brands of shoes, but I eventually settled on the Shimano shoes on the advice of the bike fitter.  He suggested that since I have had great luck with my current Shimano mountain shoes (five year-old SH-M122s), I might consider sticking with the same brand.  He felt that this would increase the likelihood of getting a good fit.  Once I decided to go Shimano, I figured I might as well go all out on the top of the line R320s.  After all, if your feet are not comfortable on a ride it can be really miserable, and every review I read about these shoes mentioned how extremely comfortable they were.  I tried on a pair of Shimano R170s just to make sure we were in the right ballpark sizewise (we were) and then placed the order.

My LBS (Bicycle Ranch in Scottsdale, AZ) is set up to do the heat molding, so I will likely get this done after I've had them for a bit.  Hopefully, between the custom fit, the stiff soles and the bigger pedaling platform will help address the pain the I get in the bottom of my left foot after riding long rides as well as result in less plantar fasciitis than I've been having.