Prepping the bike (and me) …

 

Today, I spent time with final preparations for Tuesday’s Canada Day Populaire (147 km). I am busy tomorrow and may not have the time.  Besides, I like to check things carefully and early, just in case I need to visit the bike shop.

This is the checklist –

  1. Cleaned and Pledged frame and components.
  2. Cleaned the tires, rims and brake pads.  I actually use car tire cleaner and polish on the tires.
  3. Check bag for flat tire repair making certain I have a spare tube, tire irons, an H2O cartridge (2) and, a multi-tool.  I am using the largest bad I have.  It has extra room for my wallet, Cliff Bars and Gel tubes so I don’t need to stuff everything in the jersey pockets at the start.
  4. Apply leather guard to the saddle.  It protects from the rain, keeps the leather soft and puts a shine on it.
  5. Cleaned and lubricated the chain.  This is a weekly ritual, regardless of the mileage or weather conditions.
  6. Tightened all bolts and screws – stem, bars, derailleurs, brakes, seat post , saddle mount and cable fasteners.  I hate rattles.
  7. Inflated the tires (100 psi for this set).  I usually inflate the front 5 psi less for better traction on descents.
  8. Adjusted brake cables making certain there is the same tension in each.
  9. Reset the wheel diameter on the computer.  Gotta get that speed and distance correct.

This didn’t take long.  And, it is nothing unusual.  I do this every week or two with each of the bikes.  The Roberts was already in excellent condition.  45 minutes at most.  And then, I did a 35 km ride to test the bike and, my legs.  The ride included two 2 km climbs and a mixture of flat and rolling sections.  Despite the long hike yesterday, my legs felt fresh as I sprinted up the hills maintaining a consistence, easy cadence throughout.

The bike is ready.  I am ready.  I just have to make 3 endurance gels, pack a few Cliff Bars and fill my water bottle.  And, oh ya, select a kit to wear.  I’ll leave that until tomorrow once I have a better understanding of the weather.  Red and white would be appropriate for Canada Day.

It’s ride time.

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