A little more than a year ago I made a major shift in my road bike configuration. I switched from standard tires with tubes to tubeless.
I did this based on recommendations from my friends Steve, Larry, and a few others.
I also upgraded my gravel bike to tubeless at the beginning of the year.
This weekend, however, I switched the road bike back to regular tires with tubes.
Winters here in the Chicago area can be pretty brutal … so riding outside from mid-December through mid-March is often not an option.
The only real option, other than going to a gym, is to use an indoor trainer.
There are many trainers available … from dumb, resistance based, trainers to sophisticated smart trainers, to rollers.
I used to use a Kinetic Road Machine resistance trainer … it was OK, but not great. It had a ‘power meter’, that was supposed to report power to trainer apps … but I had no confidence in it (it has no idea how hard you were pedaling, just how fast your wheel was turning).
A few years ago I decided to upgrade to rollers … but could not get the hang of them. There was no resistance … it was like riding on ice.
I decided to get a Wahoo Kickr smart trainer. Wahoo pretty much defined the consumer bike trainer market.
Team Novo Nordisk posed an interesting question on their website …
WOULD YOU GIVE BACK YOUR DIABETES DIAGNOSIS?
There are two sides to the question for me …
I’m probably one of the few people who can honestly claim that they fell off a bike trainer.
Keep in mind that, when riding on a bike trainer, the bike is locked in place on the trainer and it can’t move.
Nonetheless, I managed to fall off my trainer. Well, more like catapulted off.
This happened quite a while ago … I was using the Zwift training software with my Kinetic Road Machine dumb trainer.
A number of years ago I purchased a Road iD bracelet so, if I crashed during a ride, anyone who tried to help me would know who to contact if I wasn’t able to tell them.
I’ve worn that bracelet for most, if not all, my rides. It’s gotten kind of beat up over the years.
At this point the metal plate with the emergency contact information is pretty scuffed up and almost illegible.
While browsing the Road iD web site, I noticed they have a lifetime guarantee.
Yesterday I sent their customer service department a note indicating that the plate is scuffed and illegible … and they responded, within about an hour, indicating that they would provide a replacement.
They confirmed the information for the bracelet and shipping address … and said it would be sent out that day.
Today I got the shipping confirmation of the replacement.
That’s good customer service.
If you’re like me, when cycling, you prefer to have a bike computer and some sensors with you on a ride.
On a recent vacation, where I rented a bike, I brought my bike computer (Garmin Edge 1030) and my Wahoo RPM Speed & Cadence sensors along.
The RPM Speed sensor mounted fine on the bike’s hub using its built in rubber bands.
The issue was with the cadence sensor.
There are so many options available for cycling sensors this post will only be able to scratch the surface.
There are numerous sensors available and various configurations. I’m going to try and highlight a few that I like and the few that I don’t like.
As you might have guessed, I like keeping track of my fitness. On my bike, I use the Garmin Edge 1030, on the trainer I use Zwift.
I also like to keep track of my steps. Being a programmer, my job is mostly sedentary, so being aware of how much I’m walking and moving in general.
To this end, I wear a Garmin Vivoactive 3 smart watch.
One of the things I’ve struggled with since I started seriously cycling was eyewear.
I normally wear glasses … but, occasionally, wear contact lenses.
The problem is, with contact lenses, I’m far sighted … but can’t read anything up close (specifically maps, cue sheets, and my bike computer to a certain extent). I also find it hard to drive with contacts in (The dash board & GPS display are just out of the clearly visible range). If I wore reader glasses (+1.5), I was able to see stuff close up.
The Wahoo Headwind is a ‘smart’ fan specifically designed for cycling.
When I first heard about this product, I was quite dubious. First, and foremost, it’s expensive. $250 for a fan is pretty high. Also, for some reason, my initial though twas that they were trying to reproduce the experience of a headwind while cycling.
Well, cost aside, most of the reviews of the fan I saw were pretty positive. With the holidays upon us, this is what I decided I wanted