Chapeau, Ben Franklin

When Mrs. Stallion and I moved to a new residence this summer, I took little note of the wood stove listed as “supplemental heating”.

As I type this, it is a seasonable 30°F outside.  Inside, it is a decidedly unseasonable 81°F.  Supplemental, huh?  I think our “primary” gas furnace has run for a grand total of about 48 hours.

I think we’re going to be spoiled by this thing.

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Return of BikeAlike

Yes, the reports of Bike Alike‘s demise have been greatly exaggerated.  The triumphant return features a character actor and a Swiss time machine.

I give you actor Eric Balfour who played Milo Pressman on the show “24” and 4-time world time trial champ and classics badass Fabian Cancellara.

Milo Pressman

Milo Pressman

Fabian Cancellara

Fabian Cancellara

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Exclusive Interview!

It’s November, the days are shorter and colder.  Times like these lend themselves to reflection.  Fortunately I was able to land an interview with the man himself.  The following is my interview with Mild Stallion.

Me: Outdoor season done?

Mild Stallion: Yeah, Mother Nature makes that decision for me.  Too cold and windy, short days.  Typical stuff.

Me: You sound kind of resigned to it.  Do you have trouble leaving the road?

Mild Stallion:  It’s part acceptance, part looking forward to the change.  My riding becomes so sporadic this time of year that my fitness takes a hit.  Love it or hate it, the trainer is more “aerobically correct” – I can get a more focused workout.

Me:  How was the season?

Mild Stallion:  I had some high hopes going into it.  I had great fitness coming out of the winter and it translated very well to the road.  Unfortunately for my riding, we moved to a new house in June.  The whole process started in mid April, and the craziness didn’t subside until sometime in July.  It took a really big toll on my rides.

Outside of riding, the new house has been a huge positive.  It’s a much better situation than what we were living with for the previous seven years.

Me:  I take it there was no Circuit Century?

Mild Stallion:  Sadly, no.  I just didn’t have the consistency of rides to build up to it.  I had to concentrate on just getting rides in where I could.  My average ride was under two hours.  Compared to the previous 3 seasons where I averaged around 2.5 hours per ride, it was a significant drop.

Me:  It sounds like a tough season.  Were there any positives?

Mild Stallion:  Oh sure.  Physically I went through it unscathed and I got to get in some serious test time with a few “new to me” items.

Me:  New to you?

Mild Stallion:  Yeah, I wore bib shorts almost exclusively this year.  That along with using chamois cream and the tires I rode on – it gave me a chance to see if they were for me.

Me:  So how did you like the bib shorts?

Mild Stallion:  It’s one of those items where I wonder how I ever rode without them!  Very comfortable, no fear of showing my backside to the public (chuckles).  It kept the chamois centered naturally.

When I used them in conjunction with the chamois cream, it made for a level of long-ride comfort that I didn’t know was available.

The tires I rode were Continental Gatorskins.  As for them, let me put it this way; I can’t wait to go back to my GP 4000s next year.

Me:  So what’s next for you?

Mild Stallion:  Well, I’m already on the trainer.  Getting used to the room in the new house where I ride it.  It’s a smaller room than the old house.  No problems after the first ride.

Looking forward to giving myself a good thrashing from time to time! (laughs)  I’ve got a new Sufferfest to try and I think there’s going to be more coming out; I need some variety in the workouts that I do.  I think I have about 20 separate video and audio workouts to do, so hopefully they won’t get too routine.

Me:  Thanks for your time.  Hope you have a good indoor season.

Mild Stallion:  Thanks, I hope the fitness comes around.

 

There you have it, the man in his own words.  One outdoor season over, one indoor season underway.

Thanks for reading!

If you wish to contact Mild Stallion for interview requests, please refer them to mildstallion@gmail.com

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Good Show

Victor Wooten JD BlairJust gotta mention that  Mrs. Stallion and I saw Victor Wooten and JD Blair at The Egg last night.  Great, fun, engaging, interactive show.  Damn funky.  Highly recommended.

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Does this theme make my blog look fat?

I’m debating on whether or not to keep this theme.  Too fem?

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So Much For That Experiment

Note: Sorry about the dearth of posts.  I’ve got a lengthier one in the works.

So yesterday was an island of great cycling weather in between two crappy days.  I left work early in order to get in a good 2 hour-plus ride in lovely Vischer Ferry.  I get home and notice I have a flat on my rear tire.  Ugh.  I’m no wrench but I can repair a flat.

Now, I’ve seen competitions (on You Tube anyway) of people changing out a tube in under a minute.  You will notice I don’t appear in these videos.  I take my time to remove the old tube and try to locate the failure.  After wrestling with it for what felt like 20 minutes I find that the failure was a puncture through the sidewall.  Of my Continental Gatorskins.

Aren’t these supposed to be the tires with awesome sidewall protection?  I haven’t had a puncture flat in 5 years.  Add this to the lame road feel of these tires and I will never buy them again.  In fact, the tire that replaced it on my bike is an old GP4000 front tire that was destined for the trainer as a rear wheel beater.  Well, it’s getting pressed into service about a month early.

If you’re interested, the GP4000s have a much livelier road feel and I run them at about 10psi lower than the Gatorskins.  I guess there’s a reason that the GP4000s are a go-to model for so many riders.  They WILL be on my bike come next spring.

P.S. – the latex gloves I keep in the garage for this type of bike work – especially anything that involves fiddling with the chain – are a great idea.  That black grime that can get on your skin does not wash away easily.

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A Case of Guilt Gut

I remember the term “guilt gut” as the feeling you get in your stomach when you knew that you did something wrong.

Tonight was going to be a ride day.  Turns out, I get stuck in traffic on the way home from work.  It took about 3 times as long as usual.  So I get home and I’m a little stressed and tired.  Mrs. Stallion suggests riding tomorrow and going out for dinner.

The combination of being a good husband and lack of discipline made the decision for me.  So of course, I could do the right thing health-wise and get a satisfying light meal.  I do the exact opposite; an Italian Mix sub.  At least I was able to resist the temptation for dessert.

The feeling afterward was that of Guilt Gut.  In a literal sense, I felt very full.  This was a big, big sandwich eaten with a 20 ounce soda.  In a figurative sense, I felt terrible for the 180 degree turn my evening took.  Instead of exercise and oatmeal, I ate an unhealthy dinner and watched TV.

There have been times like this in the past.  Most of the time I don’t learn from it.  Sometimes, however, the light goes on and discipline returns.  I want that to happen this time.  I hate the guilty feeling because I know what I did was wrong.

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