James Revillini

Say 'no' to styrofoam.

Month: May 2010 (page 1 of 2)

Day 17

Stats

Distance: 16.80 miles
Time: 01:00:00
Terrain: Road: Rolling
Bike: Specialized Allez Road
Club: 2010 TerraTrike Car-Free Challenge
Weather Conditions: 9 – 10am – 73F sunny. Chipmunk index of 1.

Ride

I had to go return something to Lowe’s in Torrington.  The ride was nice.  That Stillriver Greenway is smooth as silk.  I wish all the roads were like that.  I made good time on the new bike … approaching 17mph.

Day 16

Stats

Distance: 12.70 miles
Time: 00:55:00
Terrain: Road: Hills
Bike: Specialized Allez Road
Club: 2010 TerraTrike Car-Free Challenge
Weather Conditions: 74F, sunny. Chipmunk index of 1.

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Did the Burr Mountain thing again -12.7 miles.  BEAUTIFUL!  Added a swim to the mix.  I’ll add details later.  Saw some geese.  “Ah look at the ducks!”

Headed out to Kent Falls for hiking now.

UPDATE: added stats above.

Day 15

WOW!  15 days in [to the the 2010 Terratrike Car-Free Challenge] already?

Today I put in 20.6 miles.  12.8 on the Sandblaster, 7.8 on my new Specialized Allez road bike that I picked up on my way home.  I haven’t ridden a road bike in 18 years – not since the Sandblaster, actually – so it was a little weird, but holy smokes you can get up to speed fast on these things.  And hills?  What hills?  I feel no hills in Winsted!  I have to really be careful to shout my presence out to walkers on the trails way earlier.  By applying the same amount of power to the pedals that I would on the Sandblaster, it propels me maybe 10 – 20% faster.  Getting to work will be a snap!  I’ll miss the mud and off road parts until I can score a cyclocross bike.

da bike.I have to thank my grandparents for this new bike.  They’ve given me the financial foundation to be able to replace my broken junker with something so fine.  So: thank you, Bumpa and Mimi!  You’re always here for me!!!

Only thing that sucks is that now I have to start locking the bike up again.  Worrying about having things ganked is so lame.

In my bikejournal.com club, Yort (Troy) slipped past me this morning, and I crept a little past him once again during my ride home, maintaining 7th.  However, people tend to stockpile miles over the weekends and drop them like they’re hot on Sunday night, so it’s a real skinny 7th place.  I’ve no doubt about that.

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UPDATE: put on another 2 miles by going to the health food store to get somethign for my legs.  They’re not recovering from the ride on Thursday.

UPDATE: put another 2 miles on to get ice cream for my sister since she was insistent (and I secretly liked any excuse to freaking use the new bike).

Day 14

Morning Stats

Distance: 11.60 miles
Time: 01:00:00
Terrain: Road: Rolling
Bike: Fuji Sandblaster SX XC Mtn
Club: 2010 TerraTrike Car-Free Challenge
Weather Conditions: 8:30a – 65F, sunny, cool air, no humidity, great vibe! Chipmunk index of 6.

Morning Ride

I sure wanted to bike today, but my legs sure didn’t.  Even walking around the house, they were feeling stressed and tired.  So I just did the 11 miles ride (Canton commuter lot to Tunxis) at a nice easy pace and just enjoyed the scenery.  During this morning’s ride, I just barely snagged 8th position in my club, and if Yort doesn’t beat me while I’m at work today, I might just grab 7 during the ride to my car!  It will be a precarious 7, though.  Yort will probably get me this weekend, and chalisc is also gunning for my position.

The competition is great because it’s fueling us to push harder and farther, and in doing so, we’re doing better for the environment.  I feel like I’ve made new friends through this, as we chat in the club news area about our endeavors.

Evening Stats

Distance: 17.00 miles
Time: 01:30:00
Terrain: Road: Rolling
Bike: Fuji Sandblaster SX XC Mtn
Club: 2010 TerraTrike Car-Free Challenge
Weather Conditions: 3-6:30pm – 78F-73F; sunny. Chipmunk index of 1.

Evening Ride

This evening’s ride was supposed to be a quick ride to the bank, then to the car.  The trip to the bank was almost fine, but right toward the end, I came off a high curb and was maybe shifting gears or some thing and the force of coming down on the pedal broke the derailleur (it’s 18 years old, though, so it’s understandable).  This caused the chain to hang too slack to ride … almost.  I found that if I set it to the largest from cog and the largest rear cog, then it was still really slack, but ridable, if I put very little force on it.  This gave me the ability to gingerly ride back to work where my friend and competitor in the Terratrike challenge, Mike (morebented), would graciously help me cut the chain down so the thing could be ridden on a single gear the rest of the way.

We set it to a medium gear, so going fast was impossible the whole way home.  It was a long ride, but it gave me more time to take in the beauty.  I met a guy who I thought was having bike trouble, but actually he was trying to scare a hawk away from some robins during his ride.  Good man … looking out for the little ones.

Next move will be to find a new bike (or borrow one of Mike’s).  Thanks again, Mike!

Day 13

Morning Ride Stats

I’ll paste them in later.

Morning Ride

They don’t call them the northwest hills for nothing.  I decided to try a different route, as well as to bike the whole way to work today.  I followed the recommended directions that Google came up with, and let me tell you, they must really be trying to get the American population to get physically fit in a hurry.  I was either tilted at a 45 degree angle pointed up or down the whole way crossing from Torrington into Canton.  It mellowed out after that, but it was intense!  I felt like I was in a Tour de CT or something.  Turned out to be 25.9 miles.

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One really cool thing about the ride was that I got to ride down this closed road called Marsh Rd. which passed by what I think was a wildlife preserve / turtle hatchery.  They had a sign about Spotted Bog turtles or something.  Pretty cool.  I hope to be passing my with a camera when they all start breaking ground and heading for the bog.  I have to admit that while I was going along this road, I started wondering if I had made a bad turn.  When I finally got to another road, there were no markings about what it was, but I took it and it was Niles Rd. after all, which is on the route.

I did miss a turn which would have shaved like a mile off the ride and would have taken me by a reservoir in Torrington, and instead I stayed on 202 which is OK but heavily trafficked and not much fun.  I’ll try to do it right on the way home.

On the final leg of my trip, right outside Unionville, I spotted what i think was a wood duck nestled in the high grass.  I circled back to watch her for a few minutes, then we said our goodbyes and I continued on.

Evening Ride Stats

Forthcoming

Evening Ride

I just took the longest effing route to get home ever.  See for yourself:

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What happened was that as I got to Shadybook Road, which was on my google directions to get home, I started feeling like I was going the wrong way.  About that time my friend also called to invite me down to the Brew Pub for a drink.  Well, I thought, I’m pretty close to there (or so I thought).  After I trekked up probably the longest uphill I’ve ever ridden (Rt 202 between New Hartford and Torrington) and coasted down the other side (fun!), I finally reached my destination.  My wife was across the street and I thought I’d made it clear that if she wanted to go home that we should go together, but somehow that got lost in translation.  She headed home to take care of the pets with the intention on coming back.  I was damn tired after a Margarita and a fatty plate of veggies and pasta, so I hopped on the bike and peddled my ass home.  I learned that a massive amount of bugs will hit you in the face when you ride at night.

Well, I’m sticky with sweat, probably dehydrated, and dead tired, so I’m signing off.  See you tomorrow!

p.s. My legs are going to fall off.

Day 12

Ride Stats

I’ll paste them in later when I have time.

Ride Descriptions

HOT HOT HOT.  Riding through the woods was so much better than the road.  However, my accomplishment was that I rode up that damn hill on 44 on the second set of gears, and did the whole 16 miles in just over an hour, which is good for me.  I was panting and vocalizing my exhaustion at the top of the hill, but I quickly composed myself because two girls were jogging toward me when I reached the summit.  😀

Sorry I don’t have many details, but I didn’t have time to journal yesterday, so all I remember is the heat and the hill.  I then drank 2 margaritas to even out the health benefits of the ride.  The end.

Day 11

Morning Stats

Distance: 11.60 miles
Time: 00:55:00
Terrain: Road: Rolling
Bike: Fuji Sandblaster SX XC Mtn
Club: 2010 TerraTrike Car-Free Challenge
Weather Conditions: 8A – 80F, warm, sunny. Chipmunk index of 3.

Morning Ride

I haven’t got too much for you today.  I was a little disappointed that it took me 55 minutes to go 11 miles.  It doesn’t make any sense.  I thought I was cranking pretty hard too.  I think my estimate of when I left the lot in Canton must have been off.  There’s no way it should have taken that long.

I also saved a squirrel’s life.  He was about to be cat chow but I broke up the altercation by riding up on them and the squirrel had enough time to run up a tree.

Other than that, all I can say is it was warm for the time of the morning.  I hope it cools down for my ride home.

Evening Ride Stats

I’ll paste them in later.

Evening Ride

I don’t remember much about the ride because I’m writing this 2 days after the fact.  I guess I slacked off!  Oops.

Day 10

Ride Stats

Distance: 45.80 miles
Time: 03:10:00
Terrain: Road: Rolling
Bike: Fuji Sandblaster SX XC Mtn
Club: 2010 TerraTrike Car-Free Challenge
Weather Conditions: 7:30 – 10:40a: 65F – 73F, partly sunny, overcast at times. Chipmunk index of 23!

The Ride

Wooooooo!  Forty-lovin’-five miles!  That’s the longest trip I’ve ever done in my life, I think.  I know that’s nothing to some people, but to me it’s a major accomplishment.  The last 5 to 10 miles were a little uncomfortable.  The back, the feet, the hands … they all wanted a rest, but we just kept trucking along. I’m really satisfied with the time it took – a little shocked, really.  It was about 1.5 hours there and 1.7 back.

As usual, the flora and fauna were in full effect.  The plants seemed especially lush, there were fluffy seeds and pieces of what looked like cotton (presumably from some kind of tree) blowing through the air, and they would come to rest and collect like cotton candy along the trail edge.  Chipmunks were busy scurrying, gathering, carrying young, cleaning their faces, scavenging, and so on.

The prize animal sighting was a lone crane.  He stood tall and still and slender on one of the rocks protruding from the Farmington River.  I guess he was probably scanning the water for some food. I also helped a turtle cross the path.  There was no one around, but he was hiding in his shell right in the middle of the path in the full sun.  I figured he would get too hot, so I moved him in the direction he was headed to some shade.

What a great day.  10 days into the challenge, 20 to go!

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Day 8 and 9

Stuck inside all day on the stupid computer. Can’t wait to ride tomorrow.

Day 7

Morning Stats

Distance: 16.00 miles
Time: 01:25:00
Terrain: Road: Rolling
Bike: Fuji Sandblaster SX XC Mtn
Club: 2010 TerraTrike Car-Free Challenge
Weather Conditions: 7:30 – 9a – 68F, sunny, nice air. Chipmunk index of 4. Beaver index of 1.

Morning Ride

That’s right, I said beaver index of 1. I saw a BEAVER!  Isn’t that cool?  At least, I think it was a beaver.  I looked up beaver online, and while the one I saw didn’t look much like some of pics I saw, he did look like this one. When I went by, I first thought I had seen a cat, but it was too low to the ground to be a cat, so I circled back and got off my bike and then he put his head up to see what I was doing, and it was then that I could clearly see his beaverness.

After he was assured that I wasn’t going to mess with him, he went about his business and dug a hole under an old rotten stump, and went in.  And that was that.

I owe my beaver sighting to the fact that I decided to keep the ride nice and easy this morning.  I blasted through the off-road part, but on the paved areas, I took my hands off the bars, sat back, and just cruised.

Evening Stats

Distance: 9.00 miles
Time: 00:40:00
Terrain: Road: Rolling
Bike: Fuji Sandblaster SX XC Mtn
Club: 2010 TerraTrike Car-Free Challenge
Weather Conditions: 5:30P – 80F, sunny. Chipmunk index of 0.

Evening Ride

I got an invite from my wife to go have dinner at Chilis with her, her co-workers, and some of her clients, and then go see Little Shop of Horrors in Torrington. So I mapped the route to the Chilis in Simsbury, which only turned out to be 9 miles away, and part of it was on a trail I’d never been on before: The Farmington Canal Heritage Trail.  It was very nice, but pretty crowded.  I’ll have to return to spend some more time on the big bridge overlooking the Farmington River.

From the trail, I got on Brickyard Rd., which is one of the worst roads for biking I’ve ever been on – comparable to Rt. 177 which I avoid at all costs.  Luckily, people weren’t driving like they couldn’t see me.  They probably have a lot of cyclists on that road, but the shoulder was literally painted on the edge of where the road met the ground at times.  The nice thing about Brickyard Rd. was that it offered a fair amount of hill climbs that didn’t completely slow me down … good for training.

Incidentally, Chilis is not a good place for vegetarians … very little selection.  The production of Little Shop of Horrors was awesome!  It was put on by the art department of one of the schools.  They did a bang up job and got a standing ovation.

In case you were wondering, I got a ride back to my car.  I offered to bike it, but it was kind of on her way to work.

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