Summer Rides

Fitting regular rides in along with working two jobs and significant volunteer commitments tends to leave the website feeling neglected.

How about some pixels, some words, and some GPS tracks to make us happy?

Even though I only had one day off over the July 4th weekend, I managed to squeeze in a couple rides.  On July 4th, the wife and I made our first trip to Rangeline Nature Preserve in Anderson.

We kept to the “novice” and “intermediate” trails for the day.  Even the novice stuff isn’t true beginner trail.  There are some techy spots that would have a true beginner rider walking.  It’s definitely no Camp Glenn.

2013 Year in Review

I have to say, 2013 was the best year of riding I’ve had in a long time. It came at the expense of hiking and canoeing, though. According to my Strava logs, I rode for almost 70 hours and logged around 360 miles of riding (combined between my commuter and mtb). There were a handful of rides I did not log, so in total, I probably reached 400mi or close to it. My goal was to get to 500mi on the mtb by itself, so I did come up a bit short.

Busy Summer of Rides!

It’s been quite a summer. I haven’t updated much because I’ve been working a lot and when I’ve not been working, I’ve been riding a lot.

I’ve ridden a lot at Fort Harrison State Park.


Fort Harrison State Park

I’ve ridden at Town Run Trail a few times.


Town Run Trail

Town Run Trail

I’ve done a couple of bigger rides at Brown County State Park.


Brown County State Park Heistation Point

I rode at Versailles State Park.

Running and Town Run Trail + Ft Ben + Garmin Forerunner 310XT

I wrote a few weeks back that I had lost my Garmin Forerunner 205 after a trip to Texas. I thought it had to be at my house in Texas. I have made do for the past few weeks, borrowing my wife’s Forerunner and even using my Oregon 450 on an 8mi run in Houston. That became a real pain because I have been unable to sustain a long run in the past couple weeks because of some knee pain setting in around mile 5 or 6. I haven’t been able to track myself otherwise. I broke down and ordered a Garmin Forerunner 310XT refurb. It retained the training features of the 205 that I like, added the HRM sensor compatibility and foot pod compatibility I want to upgrade to (maybe next season) and had the bonus of also being compatible with my Tanita bc-1000 scale so I can finally start transferring metrics to Garmin Connect. I’m not sure how I’ll like tracking my metrics there or not. I’m going to give it a try. Tanita’s software is only okay.

Four Years of Remission and Mini Marathon Training

I recently had my 4 year checkup at MD Anderson to see my progress. It was mostly good. My platelets are still low, but consistent with previous tests. My small “trend” of slightly increasing counts has stopped. I talked to my Dr. and got the report about my brain MRI from 6mo ago, and learned that Harold (my brain stem lesion) is now completely gone. Yay!

2013 HMBA Winter Mayhem Ride

Got out today to attend a group ride put on by the Hoosier Mountain Bike Association at Ft. Harrison State Park in Indianapolis, IN. What a great place this is. I first rode here back in the summer and fell in love with the flowy trails here. They’re not super hard, but they’re a blast to ride. It’s also a good place to take beginners. There’s a little elevation change, but it shouldn’t be too much to discourage them if they need to work on their fitness. There’s a great beginner’s loop, too, where they can stay pretty close to the trailhead if they need to bail.

Holiday Activities and 2013 Fitness Goals

As with the rest of you, my holidays have been pretty busy spending time with family and friends and doing the holiday party circuit. I’m trying to avoid gaining more weight, as I already weigh more than I want to (last check at 184lb) and I think I managed to avoid that.

I tried to make time to be active over the holidays, too. The first of those was the 2012 edition of the 5k’s of Christmas, which I ran 2 winters ago also. This time it was held in Carmel’s Central Park.

Don’t be a Stravatard

I wish I could stake a claim on that word, but I can’t. I have no idea who came up with it, but I’ve been seeing it around lately.

The short of it is that Strava’s segments competitions are pretty popular in some places. That popularity coupled with some people’s single-minded drive to compete is causing some problems out there. Other sharing sites are taking note. Garmin Connect introduced running Personal Records earlier in the summer and just added the functionality for cycling at the end of August.

Early Aug Night Ride at SFA and New XT Shadow Rear Derailleur

Shimano M772 XT Shadow Rear Derailleur

After my ride in Indy and the mechanical I suffered (being the second time I had that particular problem recently), I decided I needed to replace some worn parts…particularly my 9 yr old XTR M952 rear derailleur.  It still “works”, but I’ve had to bend the cage twice recently.  It’s on its last legs, I believe.

The Bike Shop in Nac had a NOS XT Shadow M772 rear derailleur in stock.  Not sure how old, exactly, but it’s probably been on the shelf for 5yrs or so.  I negotiated a deal for it with the owner and went home to install it.

Ticks, Ticks, and more Ticks

It’s well into tick season and for many, getting outdoors means dealing with ticks.  Not only are they annoying little creepy-crawlies, they are also vectors for many different diseases.

According to the CDC, the following disease/tick species associations are notweworthy in the United States (they are not necessarily exclusive to these particular tick species and there are likely to be more diseases, too):