Saturday, June 28, 2008

CT Sign

CT Sign
CT Sign, originally uploaded by Martinator.


062808_1053.jpg, originally uploaded by Martinator.

Quick Refill

Quick Refill
Quick Refill, originally uploaded by Martinator.

Faux Hawk

Faux Hawk
Faux Hawk, originally uploaded by Martinator.

The only time you'll ever catch me with a Faux Hawk.

First Stop

First Stop
First Stop, originally uploaded by Martinator.


062808_0855.jpg, originally uploaded by Martinator.

Last Minute Prep

Last Minute Prep
Last Minute Prep, originally uploaded by Martinator.

Some last minute adjustments before we go.

Friday, June 27, 2008

My Thumb and Tomorrow's Metric

My Thumb

It feels better. Not 100%. I haven't ridden since last Thursday. I didn't want to aggravate it any since I have a big ride tomorrow I have been looking forward to.

Marty's Birthday Metric

As part of my 40th birthday celebration, my wife asked me what I wanted. I said "a long ass bike ride with some close friends". So tomorrow I am going to do a metric I have mapped out with my best friend Mike, whom I've know since high school. We were also best men at each other's wedding and he is Godfather to my oldest daughter. My other best friend Dave was supposed to come, but he had some excuse about hurting his knee snowboarding this winter. He is going to show up after the ride and drink beers with us.

I thought about opening this ride up to more people and posting it on (A bicycling social networking site, so far local and in its infancy.), but that would have meant more organizing and I feared having to support 20 or so riders on a non-arrowed, non-cue sheeted metric ride all the way out to Connecticut and back. Maybe Next Year...

However, if you are on of my regular readers, (I know I have at least a couple), and you are reading this before Saturday morning, June 28th 2008, and you are interested in a moderate metric, drop me an or comment on this post. We haven't set a definite rollout time yet, but we are thinking maybe around 9:00. Maybe earlier, maybe later. If it is Saturday morning, send a text message to my cell phone


Keep an eye on this blog tomorrow as I may be taking pics with my cell phone and updating this blog as we ride :-)

My Plotted Out Birthday Metric

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Thumb Update

Thumb Update
Thumb Update, originally uploaded by Martinator.

Well, I didn't break my thumb according to the X-Rays. However, it still hurts. I think the technical term is either a Hand Contusion, Hand Sprain, or a combination of both.

Milford Hospital gave me a splint until it feels better. Also, a prescription for Ibuprofen and some pain reliever meds.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Monster to Home, Unhappy Thumb

Less Energy

Doing 2 25 miles rides in one day seems to be more tiring that doing one 50 miles ride. At least it seems to feel that way. I'll know more after I actually do a 50+ mile ride this year.


My thumb was "complaining" on the ride home. There is no swelling and I have fill range of motion. It is a bit painful to lift things and I hand to take my hand off of the handle bars when I hit a bump. It didn't like being jarred.

The location of the pain is near the wrist. [surfing... surfing... surfing...] Well, after surfing and Googling a bit the closest thing I can find is that I may have a minor Bennet's Fracture?

Bennett's Fracture

. Hmmm, maybe I better listen to the wife and call the doctor. I'll see how it feels later today or tomorrow...

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Bike to Work, Almost Uneventful

Perfect Morning

The morning could not have been more perfect for riding in. It was in the upper 50's when I headed out and eventually warmed up. Or maybe it was just me. Anyway, I debated wearing a shell but I definitely wore my long bike pants. I packed the shell in my backpack and headed out.

The Wreck

I wrecked within a mile of my office. Nobody's fault but my own. I did something stupid and paid for it. Instead of making a left off of Rt 27 onto Walnut St. I tried to cut the corner through the "Corner Store" convenience store parking lot. I keep on forgetting that road tires are not good at going over lips at shallow angles. Out from under me went the bike. I had the presence of mind to tuck and roll and finished off that "Gymnastic" move standing up. Banged my right hand' wrist at the base of my thumb and bumped my right knee.

Mostly I felt stupid.

Not so stupid as I did pack some Advil in my Backpack :-)

The Ride

I did kick butt on the ride in though. I averaged 16.9 mph this morning. My previous averages were 15.5 and 15.1. Unlike this past Tuesday, I felt stronger on the second half of the ride.

NOTE: GPS signal kept dropping out early in the ride...

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Phat Thunderstorm, NOT!

Thunderstorms Roll Through

All day long there were threats of a Thunderstorm occurring during the time frame of the ride. I kept an eye on the radar all day on There were scattered ones rolling through. A particularly strong one rolled through about 20 miles south of the ride less than an hour from start time. There were warnings of hail and severe winds and lightening.

We even heard thunder nearby as we got ready in the parking lot at about 5:45 PM. I checked the radar on my cell phone and saw that a cell had popped up just east of us and was headed further east. Whew...

We hit dry roads and sunny skies for the entire ride :-)

Clean Bike

This is the first ride for me since my bike went into the shop two weeks ago. I took some pictures of my new components so I know how clean I should try and keep them :-)

New Rear Cassett
New Rear Cassett, originally uploaded by Martinator.

That is one clean rear cassette. That is what they look like brand new. Now the challenge is to keep it looking that shiny...

New Chain Rings
New Chain Rings, originally uploaded by Martinator.

Nice clean chain and chain rings. I actually wiped them down after the ride.

Good First Half, Slow Second Half

It had been over two weeks since I had ridden last. Well, there was the ~25 miles back and forth from the car dealership on my Mountain Bike. Anyway, my overall time and average speed was down for the Phat Tuesday Ride. I thought that was odd since I remember rolling into the halfway point averaging ~19 mph. Hmmmm...

When I got home I uploaded my ride data and compared it to my other rides viw the Dot Race feature on I saw that compared to my fasted ride to date this year, I kicked butt on the first half. Then I tanked on the second half.

Going over the numbers in more detail, I can confirm that I tanked on the second half.

Earlier in the month, I averaged 15.4 mph on the second half (mile 13 to the end) and last night I only averaged 13.3 mph along the same segment. The biggest difference between last night and earlier in the month was that I didn't hook up with a group of riders coming out of the rest stop last night. that and my chain derailed, but that shouldn't really have had much of an impact.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Work to Car Dealership

Not My First Choice

Yesterday's afternoon ride from my office to the car dealership reaffirmed my opinion that commuting by mountain bike over a significant distance is not the ideal way to go. Maybe that had something to do with the bike weighing ~33 lbs. before I put the Topeak MTX BeamRack Bike Mounted Rack with well packed MTX Trunk Bag DX on it. However, I must say again that the rack/bag combo is a much better option than a backpack, and it is very useful for those Bike Path days with the family. I wish there was a similiar option for my road bike, but between the carbon fiber seat post and the lack of braze-ons (it's a "racer", not a touring bike...) I don't really have many options outside of a backpack.

Picking up the Car

It was kind of cool that both of my "vehicles" were ready on the same day. I biked to the Dealership to pick up the car. Mounted the strap-on rack to the back and put the mountain bike on it. Then drove to Bicycles Plus to pick up my other bike. I just thought that was cool, even though the drive through surbian rush hour traffic sucked a lot more the riding the mountain bike 12+ miles on the road.

Support Your Local Bike Shop!

I like my bike store. I was having a lot done to the bike:

  • Fix broken spoke (original reason for taking it in)
  • Replace chain (original chain with ~5,000 miles on it)
  • Replace rear cassette
  • Replace Front Chain Rings
  • Brand New Tape for Handle Bars (it needed it)

On top of that, the bike shop mechanic gave my bike a full tune up before he realized it wasn't on the work order. Nice. He even waxed the frame with Meguiar's Car Wax. (Personally, I use Zymöl. ) Nice.

Support your local bike shop :-)

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Bike in Shop: It's Ready!


Bicycles Plus just left a message on my cell phone. My bike is ready!

So now I can take my mountain bike to the dealership, pick up my car, then drive to the bike shop and pick up my road bike.

Bike in Shop: Day 5 - Bike to Work

Bike in Shop: Day 5 - Bike to Work
Bike in Shop: Day 5 - Bike to Work, originally uploaded by Martinator.

The car had to go to the dealership today and I had planned on biking in to work from there. I didn't want to reschedule, so I took the mountain bike. It was only 12 miles afterall...

Using a Mountain Bike on the Road: the Good and the Bad...

The mountain bike I used is one that my step-father passed on to me after he got his full suspension Cannondale. It is a 1992(?) Specialized StumpJumper.

The Bad
  • The bike is heavy and slow.
  • The gearing maxes out on some decents.
  • Climbing sucks...
The Good
  • I don't worry so much about every little pothole, crack, or patch of sand/gravel while riding.
  • The bag on the rack is a much nicer option than a backpack.

Device Failure

GPS Signal

On Route 27 in Wayland, I lost the GPS signal for a good 2 miles or so. Oh well, at least I'll get an accurate distance measurement from the [~16(?) year] old Cateye ATC bike computer I'm using as a back up.

Cateye ATC

Ugh. for some reason, a few miles after I regained the GPS signal, the bike computer simply reset and stopped recording speed and distance. Oh well...

Hmmmm... What did I forget?

Underwear. As I arrived at the dealership, an thought crossed my mind "I forgot to pack underwear." Luckily, I was able to pick up a pair at the Maynard Outdoor Store once I got to work.

Note: I lost the GPS Signal on on Rt. 27 in Wayland.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Bike in Shop: Day 4

Bike in Shop: Day 4
Originally uploaded by Martinator

Today would have been a beautiful day to have ridden in to work. This post next to my desk is where my bike would be parked.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Bike in Shop: Day 3

1:57 PM - No Call Yet...

The bike shop hasn't called yet. I don't think I'll be making the Phat Tuesday ride tonight.

I do have all my gear in case they do call :-)

Monday, June 9, 2008

Bike in Shop: Day 2


The bike shop I go to, Bicycles Plus in Franklin, MA, is closed on Mondays. Tomorrow is the weekly Tuesday evening group training ride. Maybe if I am lucky, very lucky, My bike will be ready...

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Bike in Shop: Day 1

Mowing the Lawn...

So the bike is at the bike shop. After I dropped my daughter off at Gymnastics, I set about mowing the lawn. As I was mowing, my neighbor, and fellow Phat Tuesday Rider, Ed biked up. He was coming back from a ride and I told him my about my bike. He mentioned that he was in the bike shop yesterday and saw a bike on the stand that looked like mine. Cool. Maybe it will be ready a lot sooner that I think.

Water bottle mounted on the Lawn Mower. Just not quite the same...

More Bikers...

I saw 2 more cyclists ride by as I continued to mow the front lawn. I hope I get my bike back sooner rather than later...

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Hottest Day (So Far), Shortest Ride...

Broken Spoke

I had a nice block of time to get out for a ride while my wife and daughters went out shopping. 1 mile into the ride, my spoke broke. End of Ride :-(

Broken spoke on rear wheel...

Yeah, I didn't get very far...

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Phat Tuesday Ride: Close Calls and Chickens(?)

Phat Hiatus

Prior to last night, May 6th was my most recent Phat Tuesday ride. Here's the breakdown of the Hiatus:

  • May 13th: Recovering from a Stomach virus/bug that I caught from my daughters
  • May 20th: I have a friend vsiting from out of town. I told him to bring his bike. He almost did, but didn't. We went to Chili's instead and talked like men should talk when the wives aren't around :-)
  • May 27th: Worked late fixing defects on an upcoming release.

Close Call

At about mile 2.25 on the first significant climb on Vine St, a bunch of us were, well, bunched up. Somebody next to me, (I suck at names), lost control of their bike when their shoe unclipped from their pedal as they stood up to climb. The front wheel went wobbly and people quickly gave him as much room as they could. right about when he regained, oh, say, 90-95% of his control back, he ever so slightly brushed up against me. I saw it coming, but there was nowhere for me to go. So instead of doing a panic move I just held my position and stayed straight. Better for him to hit me when I'm in control of my bike than hit me when I am in the middle of my own awkward avoidance maneuver. (Or hit someone else while trying not to get hit myself...) It worked out.


Then, about 2 miles after the above incident, the group I was in came upon some chickens crossing in front of us on Burnt Swamp Road. They were odd looking chickens though. Some people said they were Turkey Hens. I thought they looked more like a Pheasant, but they were lacking a long tail. I've searched some chicken sights, and the closest thing I found was a Wyandotte Chicken. But I don't think that is what we came across. Anyway, if you want to see the chicken for yourself then I imagine you can see them at Adam's Farm in Cumberland, RI during pumpkin picking season.

Strong First Half

I was pleasantly surprised to find myself hanging in there with a large group of riders. It is definitely much easier to ride with a similar paced group than to try and not get dropped from the lead group. I believe we rolled into the halfway rest stop averaging somewhere just south of 20 mph.

Don't Get Behind a Tall Guy...

After the rest stop I got behind a tall guy with long legs. I quickly decided to "not" try and keep up with him. He simply "just kept going forward" while I could feel myself struggling to hang on.

Mount St. Climb

I eventually reconnected with a group and hung with them until Mount St. Mount St. is a short, steep climb and it is every man and women for themself at that point. Some people take off and try to start strong up that climb, only to peter out at the top. Some others fly up the hill and are never seen again. Bastards!

Then there are people like me and Ed, who just focus on maintaining a slow, steady, and deliberate pace. During this climb I also focus on taking long, deep breaths. (Sometimes when one is pushing oneself, one forgets to breath.) I think the breathing helped. Not sure exactly how, but as I approached the top of the climb, I was passing about 70% of the people who passed me and I was actually had enough energy to accelerate past some as the grade leveled out. It was nice to have energy left over at the top of that climb.

A Good Ride

It was a good ride, despite the close call and the chickens. Looking forward to next Tuesday...

Monday, June 2, 2008

Medfield-Walpole-Norfolk, and Geese

Sunday Afternoon Ride...

My daughter got her riding in yesterday morning, in the afternoon it was my turn. When I headed out, I saw Ed, a neighbor and fellow Phat Tuesday cyclist pulling in. I waved, he waved back.

With no real plan in mind I headed east towards Medfield, then south into Walpole. Once in Norfolk I decided to head south some more into Wrentham. It was sunny and warm for most of the afternoon. However, when I hit Wrentham, the wind picked up andI saw a huge gray cloud come rolling in. I whipped out my cell phone and fired up my Mobile My-Cast application and I checked the radar. No rain in sight. No lightening strikes in the area either. Cool! time to keep riding :-)

Geese Crossing

Halfway through Norfolk, I came upon a family of geese crossing the road near the Stony Brook Wildlife Sanctuary.

Geese, sometimes you just have to stop...

Across, safe and sound.

Catherine's Kids PMC Ride

Catherine had her Kids PMC Ride yesterday. She did the "Tikes and Trikes" version. The older kids, 7-14, get to ride a choice of a 2.5 mile, 5 mile or 7 mile course. However, Catherine rode for 1:15 straight, and then some. So she may have actually ridden for a greater distance than a majority of the "route" riders.

Fund Raising

Through the help of friends and family, Catherine raised $330 that will go for cancer research and treatment at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute through its Jimmy Fund. The total amount raised for the Franklin ride was over $20,000!