Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Now I've done it

I am now officially registered for the VIVA Bike VEGAS event on September 22. I choose the 17 mile option that focuses on a trip up the Strip.

Of course after I paid my money I read the details including the 5:00 AM start time. I had been wondering how we would "see the lights on the world famous Las Vegas Strip" and now I know since sunrise isn't until 6:30 or so.

So who is going to support some great causes and join me on this ride?

BTW Thank you to Lisa at BikingLasVegas.com for the promo code bikininglv12 which saved me $21 off the $105 registration fee.

Monday, August 27, 2012

So Much Technology

It hit me this morning, after my ride, that I'm using way to much technology to tell me I'm slow.  I know I'm slow, but I still feel this need to measure and quantify that slowness.  Here's  why I decided I'm way too "connected."

I got up this morning and put on my cycling clothes, went downstairs and grabbed my Garmin Forerunner 305.  I then proceeded out to the garage and got ready to ride.  I turned my Garmin on and had to wait about 60 seconds while it acquired the satellites so it knew where I was and could track my movements.

I then rode my bike (only 6.22 miles but that's another (short)story).

When I got home, I pulled out the laptop and my Garmin connector and commenced to uploading my ride to various sites.

When I first connected the Garmin, Training Center opened and automatically imported my ride data.  It has a map of the ride as well as my speed and timing and elevation profile.

Next I opened my internet browser, went to my favorites and opened My Daily Mile.  This was one of the first sites I found when I started training 2 1/2 years ago and I have been uploading everything there since.  This site definitely has my most complete workout history.

Next I went back to my favorites and opened My Fitness Pal.  This site is great for counting calories consumed as well as calories burned.  I selected my activity (bike riding 12-14 mph) and entered my time of 29 minutes and its magic calculator said I had burned 740 calories.  Not bad for a quick, early morning work out.

After that I fired up and logged into the Plus 3 Network site,  This was a site that Fatty turned me on to last year while we were raising funds for World Bicycle Relief.  I love the site because through its sponsors I can help others by doing nothing more than logging my activities.  So far I've earned them $15.75.  Sure its not much in and of itself, but it was donated for my doing nothing more than uploading my workouts.  Everyone really should be doing this!

The next site I went to to log in what I had done was Map My Ride.  I had been using this off and on to track my rides, but that was more so before I got the Garmin.  I did find out a couple of people I follow on the web use this site, so I have been uploading my activities here as well.

Lastly I log into Garmin Connect and upload my activity there.  I'm not really sharing the data here with anyone, it serves more as a back up.

I have also gotten a new phone and downloaded the Map My Ride and Strava apps to it to use in case I happen to ride without my Garmin.

That makes 6 different places that the details of my slow rides are preserved.  Each one has its one or two unique features or reasons I use it, but what it really boils down to for me is a bit of accountability.  By putting my rides out there, I am showing the world how often, long and hard I am riding.  It gives me just a little more motivation to actually get out there and ride somewhere that day and that helps.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Easy or Hard????

How should I push myself - Easy or Hard?

I am looking ahead to a couple of organized rides this fall.  The first is put together by our Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) and is called Viva Bike Vegas.  In the past it has been held in October, but this year they moved it up to the Middle of September to coincide with the Gran Fondo Pinarello and Interbike, and it is being held on September 22.  What attracts me to this ride is the opportunity to actually ride the Las Vegas Strip.

The second organized ride is BIKE:MS Vegas Challenge  which will be held November 10 & 11.  Thee are ride options on both Saturday and Sunday and the proceeds of the fundraising go to the National MS society.

Both rides look to be well organized and well run.  They both offer options as to length of ride as well.  Viva Bike Vegas has 4 options 17, 75, 102and 122 miles.  BIKE:MS has 3 options on day 1: Century, Metric Century or 30 miler, and 2 options on day 2: 50 and 30 miles.

This is where the question comes in:  Do I go the easy route and look at the shorter options, or do I really push myself and try for a longer option?  My first instinct has been to ride the 17 mile route for Viva Bike Vegas and the 30 mile on Day 2 of the BIKE:MS. Of course that was before I read some of the recent blog posts by Fatty, Sarah, Fizzhog and Steve.  Now I am starting to question if I should push myself harder.
One huge consideration is my current fitness level, likely quantity of riding to prepare for the events.  Another is whether or not anyone is going to be accompanying me on the ride(s).  I would love to have some company!

OK, I’ve made up my mind and will shortly be putting my money where my mouth is as I actually register for these 2 events.  I am going to do the 17 mile route for Viva Bike Vegas.  If they had a 50 mile route, I would be tempted to do it as it is just after my 50th birthday, but I think the 17 miler will do nicely.  I’ve also decided to do the 30 mile ride on both days of the BIKE:MS event. (watch for more information so you can donate to help support this great cause)

So, I now have a plan and will ride fairly easy, but tending towards hard as I get more miles under my belt.  Anyone want to join me at either event????