Thursday, May 26, 2011

New Bike Day...again...maybe

So i had finally got the money together about 2 months ago to buy myself a new Road bike. I have been riding and racing on my entry level Aluminum Marin Porto Fino for just over 3 years now. Now do not get me wrong. For $675 it has been an awesome bike. The only upgrade i ever really did on it was replace the rear wheel with a hand built rear wheel that cost me about $150 because my 230LBS kept breaking the little spokes. It had Shimano Sora on it which work surprisingly well for being so budget minded. I put 3200 miles on it so far with no major problems. I am still going to use it for going back and forth to work and dirty/rainy rides.

I had a budget of about $2200 and started looking. My biggest hitter is wanting a Carbon Fiber frame. Well for this kind of money i found a Kestrel on Bikes Direct with full Ultergra components on it with in my budget! Normally a Carbon frame with Ultegra and good wheels would be about 3000-3500.

I was super worried about not buying a bike from my local bike shop. I felt ashamed not to support them but there is no way i would get that spec for the money i had. So i nervously ordered it knowing i had a full 30days to return it.

Here is how it came:

Looked good so far. I took it out the box and gave it a quick once over. All looked good. Here it is out the box:

I took it to my local bike shop to put it together. That cost me $40 and they did not make me feel bad for not buying one of theirs.
Here is what it looked like made:

It was VERY light and rode extremely fast.
I put about 40 miles on it and i had some trouble changing gears on the rear derailleurs. I just thought it was the cables setting in. It got worse though. On a ride the chain snapped! What the heck. It was an Ultegra Chain and i took it in. They said they had never seen the Ultegra chain snap before! I got new links and go it going. I used a really good mechanic and he could NOT get the rear derailleur in adjustment no matter what he did. He said he would have to pull the handlebar tape off and re run the cable costing me more money. This gave me a very bad feeling about this bike. So i packed it back up and shipped it back for a full refund. They were very good about giving me 100% refund.

So i selected a Specialized bike at my local bike shop that i am meant to pick up today. It is much much less of a bike than this one but i feel more confident about having the local bike shop help me if there is a problem. It is still a Carbon Frame and i am OK with the gear set but the wheels on it are heavy.

We will see how it goes and i will let you know.

--Update...went for the fiiting on my new bike and the 54cm frame was just too small for me. The LBS is going to have to order a 56CM for me. Means i will have to wait another week. Very frustrating but i would rather have it correct. Group ride tonight is going to be on my Marin again.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Green Bay Cellcom Marathon 2011

Yep that me in that photo on the far right of the group.
Back in Novemeber of 2010 right after i did the Turkey Trot, a lady at work i run with sometimes got killed in a car crash. She got completely side swiped by another driver out of the blue at an intersection.
She was meant to do the Half Marathon here in Green Bay yesterday.
Because of this my company decided to put together a team to run it in her honor. I have never done a full Marathon before but have done a few Halfs.
I decided to man up and run this one. Her brother works here at our company also.

I had done my training for this Marathon but only ran about 3 days a week for it. I do not like to run more than that as i get really sick of running fast when i do it this much. I had no idea how i would handle a full Marathon.

I am so lucky that my family said they would support me and meet me on the course wherever i asked them to. Thank YOU! I could not have done it with out them. We live about 50 mins drive from Green Bay so we did not need to spend the night.

So i packed up a large bag with everything i thought i may need and asked them to bring it to the spots i was to meet them at. I meet them about every 4-6 miles which really helped as i knew i only had to focus on seeing them at the next point.

I managed to forget my ipod so i thought i would be running the first 9 miles with no music until i remebered i could use Pandora on my Black Berry...phew!

The weather was dry but extremely windy. 40mph winds were blowing.

 I was trying to enjoy it. I was surpirised to see i started to speed up towards the end. It was all about management. I even sent status on my facebook on my phone during parts of it to keep me going. The crowds were great! they really got me throught the hard parts. I didnt walk any of it which i was also surprised about. With 1/2 mile left i nearly tripped badly but managed somehow to stay upright.

About Mile 23-24 is when i started to hurt and good bit. No cramps or blisters or sores just the top of my feet hurt and good bit. I ran through the pain as i kept telling myself people with cancer have to go through more pain than this.

For my first Marathon i did surprisingly well.

Marathons are not really my thing. It does not seem healthy to be in this much soreness. I cant workout for two-three days either and thats going to bug me. I will stick to half marathons unless it is a special circumstance. This one was for you Amy.

Here is some pace Data my total time was 4hours 48mins

Start 7.08am
Mile 5 56:26 Pace 11.17 8.04am
Mile 10 1:50:23 Pace 11.02 8.58am
Mile 13.1 2:23:06 Pace 10:55 9.31am
Mile 15 2:43:50 Pace 10:55 9.52am
Mile 20 3:37:54 Pace 10:53 10.46am
Finished at 11.56am

Friday, May 13, 2011

Coming up

Ok so somehow my last blog got deleted?

Very weird.

Anyway really quick this Sunday will be my first Marathon in Green Bay!

If you want to get live results my number is 1686

Full report coming