Friday, March 6, 2009

Just One Of Those Days

It was just one of those days were you get on the bike and think...."Oh this is just so not happening today."
You know: legs felt totally flat from the beginning.
Maybe it was the plyos that I stepped up a notch last night.
Maybe it was that one beer I had. (Yes, big bottle...)
Maybe it was not enough water throughout the day yesterday.
Maybe it was the "Fried Noodle" that was mostly veggies and sauce. (I got two orders of it)
Maybe it was the hours and hours of biking I've already done this week starting to build up.

Whatever it was, I willed my way through it in an effort to see how much of a century I could choke down. After the 15k, 20 minute decent (which was preceded by a 15k 60 minute climb [did I mention these already? hum]) a Pepsi and a ten minute break my legs felt okay going back up the other side. (15k, 60 min)

But then my left cleat started making some seriously strong clicking sound. It's done this a couple of time since I washed my shoes the other day. No big, I stopped and whacked my shoe on the pavement a couple of times and off I went.

But then I was getting into the decent (15k, 20 min) and i felt this quick sting on my left calf and heard some kind of sharp noise (I've been ridding listening to the pizzle, so I didn't hear quite what it was). But it didn't feel or sound good. I thought, "What the hell was that." I slowed, pulled over, and after a few seconds realized that my rear tire was getting soft. No big, I'll just swap the tube and pump it up using my handy little Toffeli pump. (My CO2 cartridges were confiscated by the Hong Kong Security Admin. thank you Hong Kong [note that JFK didn't find/take the CO2]) I've only used this pump like once because I'm a big fan of the CO2 and there's a reason I don't use this little guy. It takes like a gajillion pumps, gets wicked hot and has a miserable seal around the valve. Sweet. But I eventually got a sufficient amoutn of air in the tube as well as a second degree burn on my left hand and kept going.

But then when I got back into the decent I heard this horrible squealing from my rear wheel when I braked. Not dis-similar to that of a canti brake that is mis-alligned. So I stopped and fiddled with the cable and how the caliper was centered. Not any better. I stopped again, fiddled some more not much better, but screw it, it's just a bit annoying. So now I'm thinking, "Okay use mostly front brake" yeah that's harder than it seems. So I came ripping into a hairpin, layed it hard on the brakes and got some good rear wheel shimmy going. I slowed down to futz with the brake a little more, looking back at the caliper, then looking up and seeing that the road has a serious left hand turn to it and I was so going into the ditch. I jammed on the brakes but still went down with enough speed to hear that sickening crack of my handlebars rotating forward in the stem. Two cracks actually. The good news is that I went into the ditch on the uphill side of the road and not the gorge on the downhill side. And the more good news is that since I slowed to check on my breaks it really wasn't that bad of a crash. But still that moment when I looked up and thought, "Oh shit" then went right into the ditch was pretty classic.

So broke out the tool, adjusted the bars and limped on back home feeling worse for the wear.

I'm out of LPB tonight and'll be taking a day or two off.

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