iPhriday – good food …

There are no better ingredients than fresh fruits and vegetables (and the odd micro brew) to fuel your rides.

These photographs were taken with my iPhone 5C, and have not been edited in any way. I’m joining Lisa from GrayDaysAndCoffee to share smartphone photos each Friday. Please join us and share your favourite photographs.

What tire size?

I posted previously about the need to correctly inflate your tires to maintain a 15% tire drop both front and back. This requires taking into account the weight of both the rider and bike, the weight distribution on the tires, and the size of the tire.

But what is the best tire size?

I have 3 sets of 700C wheels, each with different tires. The Shimano training wheels have 25 mm and 28 mm tires, and the Dura-Ace racing wheels are equipped with 23 mm tires. I believed that narrower tires roll with less resistance, and are faster. So, I trained on the wider, more comfortable tires, saving the 23 mm tires for race events.

Well, apparently, I was mistaken. 25 mm tires, if inflated the same, have a smaller contact patch on the road, and consequently, roll with less resistance (see attached chart). So, although a few grams heavier, they roll faster, and are more comfortable, particularly on long rides.

So today, I swapped out the 23 mm tires on the Dura-Ace wheels to 25 mm Vittoria Rubino Pro folding tires. I want new tires and tubes for the upcoming Whistler Gran Fondo. There is no need to take more chances with a possible flat than is necessary.

 

iPhriday – wraps with imagination …

I like being alone at the cottage.

The days are similar, each blending into the next. I get up, have breakfast, ride, prepare a recovery drink, make lunch, work around the cottage, make dinner, and then read a “who-done-it” until I fall asleep. I rise and fall with the sun. Much of the day is centred around food – buying and preparing it. This is something I’m not allowed to do at home. I’m told, that’s not my job. But when I’m alone, it is an integral, and enjoyable, part of every day.

This trip, I made a lot of wraps with a variety of ingredients. Rice. Lentils. Beans. Sweet potato. Tomato. Cucumber. Lettuce. Spinach. Tofu. Scrambled eggs. I would cook a pot of rice, keep it in the refrigerator ready for my post-ride meal, and add whatever ingredients I had on hand. It was quick, easy, and nourishing. My favourite, as it turns out, is a combination of rice, lentils, sweet potato, scrambled egg, tomato, and baby spinach.

These photographs were taken with my iPhone 5C, and have not been edited in any way. I’m joining Lisa from GrayDaysAndCoffee to share smartphone photos each Friday. Please join us and share your favourite photographs.

iPhriday – the roads I ride …

When I’m at the cottage, I ride different roads. Quiet rural roads. Roads with little, if any traffic. Roads with scenery I’m not accustomed to. Lakes. Sandy beaches. Farmers’ fields. Cows. Horses. Deer. Turtles. Wild turkeys. I even saw a fox one day. This is the way cycling is meant to be.

These photographs were taken with my iPhone 5C, and have not been edited in any way. I’m joining Lisa from GrayDaysAndCoffee to share smartphone photos each Friday. Please join us and share your favourite photographs.

 

iPhriday – from where I sit …

Most of my “sit time” these days is in one of these chairs facing the waterfront, always the waterfront. There is a continual parade of wildlife on the water – loons, Canada Geese, osprey, herons, otters, fish, and even the occasional beaver. From  sunrise to sunset there is symphony of sounds that seemingly stops time.

These photographs were taken with my iPhone 5C, and have not been edited in any way. I’m joining Lisa from GrayDaysAndCoffee to share smartphone photos each Friday. Please join us and share your favourite photographs.

Training camp …

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I think of visits to the cottage as training camps.

For the past decade, I have been coming here mostly on my own. Sometimes for only a few days, but in recent years, for more extended stays. A month. Maybe two or three. And every time I visit, I bring one of the road bikes.

I think of this time as my time. My time to relax, and do exactly as I please. Ironically, I always do the same things. I go down, and get up, with the sun. I cycle 35-50 kilometres most mornings, and on the weekends do a longer 75-100 km ride. I prepare simple, low-fat, low calorie meals. Cereal with Almond milk, and a black, filtered coffee for breakfast. A recovery smoothie following most rides. A sandwich, wrap, or salad for lunch. And an Italian Frittata, a tofu wrap, a vegetable salad, or a soy burger for dinner. No dessert. Little or no dairy. Little or no bread. And, when it is hot, like it is now, a local lager.

In the afternoons after my ride, there is always a chore that needs attention. Grass to cut. Docks to be repair. A workbench to be built. Floors to be washed. Laundry. Windows to be cleaned. And, fish to be caught. There is always something to do.

This place was built by my father over 60 years ago.

At first, it was a family place. A place we would visit on the weekends mostly in the summer. Then, after my father became ill, it became a “girls” place as my mother liked to refer it it. She would come up with her girl friends throughout the warmer, summer months. And then, after my mother passed, I seriously considered selling the place, but after discovering how much it was in disrepair, I began stealing long weekends to visit during business trips to Toronto. I replaced a leaky roof. Restored a water-damaged bedroom. Built a large deck by the waterfront. Raised the screened porch so that it is at the same level as the rest of the cottage. Raised the back room and entrance so it felt more like a part of the cottage. Closed in a space that can be used as a third bedroom, or in my case, a bike workshop. Painted both of the bedrooms and kitchen. Installed a new kitchen countertop. Installed a new toilet and sink. Built a floating dock for sunning and swimming. Hired an arborist to open the waterfront views and provide an unobstructed entrance from the back of the property. Over the past decade, I have done a lot to this place.

I have visitors, but they are few. Mostly, it is my place, and my time. It’s simple, clean, dry, and comfortable. The furniture is not elaborate. Some old. Some new. I have kept a rattan sectional couch, two small upholstered chairs, and a parsons table that belonged to my mother, and am currently in the process of having the cushions and chairs reupholstered with contemporary, patterned fabrics. This is the last step in the process of tailoring the cottage to my tastes.

The cottage means a lot of things to me, but mostly, it is a training camp. Time to cycle the quiet, scenic, rural roads. Time to get stronger, and lighter. Time to cleanse the body, spirit, and mind. It is a minimalist experience. Spartan. Monastic. Simple. Cycle. Rest. Work. No TV. Only CBC radio and books.