I just rode 15.9 kilometers! Check it out on Strava: http://app.strava.com/activities/4504389 It sucked.
So, I planned this fun little 2 hour cross ride at about 11 the night before, so sort of spur of the moment. And I realized, as I was planning it, that my cross tires were not on the cross wheels. But whatever, that takes 10 minutes, I’ll do it before I go to bed. What I should’ve thought to myself was “Why aren’t the cross tires on the cross wheels? Is it because you rode your track wheels for cross, and then put them back on your track bike a few weeks ago? Along with the stem and crankset from your cross bike? Why yes, yes it is. Had I asked myself that question, I’d have realized that I, in fact, needed to swap the crankset back to the cross bike, adjust the headset and stem and bars and brake cables to work with the new stem, AND put the tires on the backup cross wheels before I could go on a cross ride. Instead, I stayed up too late chatting online, watching hulu, and refilling my daughters juice cup in 4 hour increments, slept in til 10, and realized I had an hour to accomplish all of the above, get dressed, eat breakfast, get Nia on and off the toilet a few times, and make sure she was ready to go with Mommy before I could leave at 10:45. Obviously you can see where this is going. Have you seen that commercial about the guy who is paying too much for cable, throws the remote, gets dumped, grows a straggly beard, and adopts dozens af stray cats? I was that guy at 10:45 this morning, as I was trying to adjust cantilever brakes and get my headset to seat properly so my bars would turn my wheel without pitting my bearing cups. I didn’t get it all set up properly until after I resigned myself to missing the ride and texted Phomma to tell him I wasn’t going to make it.
So I finally get the whole thing sorted out, and get the kit on and head out the door, at 11:45, only to find that my bars are still crooked and my tires have about 30psi. Awesome for deep mud, not so awesome for the 2.5 mile pavement ride to the mud. Stopped twice to adjust the stem and bars and pump up the tires, and then finally go to the mud hill, just after my group had left. So I thought, hey, I’m here, there’s mud, hills, I’m on a cross bike, why let all that happened to get me here ruin my fun? I rode a couple laps, did some climbing and spinning and braking, and just when the ache in my back started to subside and I felt warmed up, my front tire went flat. So I stopped to patch the pinch, in the snow and rain and wind, and got it to hold air and got back on. By now I was cold, my warmup blown, feeling kind of pathetic, and not altogether confident in my patch job. I rode down the hill, and actually had a few minutes where I was letting off the brakes and hopping over roots and rocks at high speed and feeling like a cross/mtb racer, and then I was at the bottom of the hill. I asked myself, should I go up again? Warm up all over? See if the back pain comes back? Risk the patch blowing off or pinching the other tube? Or should I go home, do yoga, take the tires off and fix the patch or put new tubes in, and prepare to do this again tomorrow? I opted for the latter choice.
And then, on the way home, feeling defeated and pathetic for having ridden for an hour and only done about 15 miles, I passed two team rides full of people I know and felt even more pathetic for not just riding my road bike today. So I get over that, kind of jazzed that my cross bike is rideable again and I can take it out every day until the weather clears, and I get a block from home and pinch flat the rear tire riding over some broken chunks of concrete. Pretty much the icing on the cake. The best part, is that as I was walking my bike that block to the house, the sun is shining, the sky is clearing, the day is turning beautiful, and my only regret was that my ride was so short. I kind of wished I’d stayed up there, perhaps gotten a couple more flats, exhausted my patch kit and then had to call for an emergency evacuation to avoid walking 2.5 miles home in my mtb cleats. That would’ve been the best!