There was an article on a local news website today that drivers are driving in the new “protected” bike lanes. I haven’t yet used these lanes, they don’t go where I’m going, but I’ve seen them. They’re “protected” with paint. That must be some magic paint – or not if people are driving in them.
Anyway, I clicked though and made the mistake of glancing at the comments at the end of the article. These are people who post comments from Facebook, so their real names show up. I’m not on Facebook, and even if I were, I would not want to engage these same tired arguments.
Ignoring the rare occasion, I normally have no issues with drivers. So why do I get so angry when I see the raging ignorance online? Maybe it’s because they are willfully ignorant. Some are worse. In one article about a cyclist badly injured in a hit-and-run crash, one idiot commented “Good!”
I want to take away their cars and licenses until they have a better understanding of the law and more empathy for their fellow man. Maybe I’m just having a bad day, but this is getting to me today. It’s making me want to go have a beer – but I’m trying to lose weight.
I’ve lost track of my resets. Some of them have been quite helpful. Others didn’t last long enough to matter.
I haven’t had a beer since Tuesday. I won’t have another one until 6/27 – so one month without beer.
I mentioned that my weight according to the doctor’s scale was 268. That’s wearing clothes and with things in my pockets. I started weighing daily again yesterday. I’ve been just under 262 both days. I’m only going to start posting my weekly and monthly averages. That’ll will make updating simpler.
I’m also back to tracking everything I eat. I only had 1390 calories yesterday, but I went to bed hungry. I should have had something more, but I didn’t have anything healthy in the house.
I’m sitting at a mere 490 calories so far today, but I’ll have a snack and dinner yet today. I just came in from mowing the lawn, so I have a large glass of water next to me.
Diane and I took the dogs for another walk last night. It was shorter than Wednesday’s excursion, but I was feeling weak (should have eaten more).
I don’t care for driving, but I still do it for longer trips. I first got a drivers license two days after my 16th birthday. I rarely drive these days. After having a valid license for a solid 27 years, I managed to let it expire yesterday. I didn’t realize it until this afternoon. It’s now been renewed.
I’m taking a one-month break from beer. I’m not cutting back, I’m cutting it out. I’ve gained too much weight. I’ve been lazy. I’ll re-evaluate in a month.
Diane and I often ride the tandem to her work in the morning, then I ride solo a few blocks to my work. We did that today. In the afternoon, I picked her up, and headed to get my drivers license renewed. She had changed into casual clothes and flip-flops. She learned that flip-flops can come off while pedaling. She had to retrieve her footwear in downtown traffic.
My weak ankle has been causing me to limp. The weird walking caused a large buildup of callous on my heel. The heel split open and was quite painful. This caused quite a few issues. I started putting “heel balm” on it a few days ago, and it’s much better.
Sunday’s ride with Tim showed me that the ankle is still quite weak. I think the uptick in activity that I’ve had recently has been good, if a bit painful. I noticed today that I can barely lift myself onto my toes while standing only on my right leg. I haven’t been able to do that since before the accident. I’m also not limping at all today. I still have some weakness, but I’m making good progress.
More About Beer (and Food)
Beer and food is the keystone of my current social life. I often go out for beer after a bike ride. Diane and I go out for beer too often. Since I’m not drinking beer for a month, we need to come up with healthier habits. We started today by taking the dogs for a walk.
We walked the dogs to the bank, post office, and coffee shop. It was about a 2.5 mile trip. I much prefer riding a bike that distance, but it was nice to do something different and the dogs liked it.
I’ll eventually start weighing myself again. My last doctor visit had my weight at 268, which is pathetic. It basically means I lost 100lbs only to gain back nearly 70% of that. I weigh more now than I did since before I started riding a bike.
I’m going to have to help more with the cooking around the house. I have some ideas for healthier eating. I’m going to start tracking calories again. Once I do allow myself beer again, the beer calories will have to be tracked.
I want to feel like a cyclist again. I’m not selling the Fargo. I’m holding off on buying another bike. The bikes I have can get me through. It’s more about riding the bikes than buying them.
Tim and I met up at Breadworks, as usual, on Saturday morning for an urban spin. The ride was pleasant, but it’s really the only kind of riding we’ve been doing recently. We schemed to do something about that.
He did play a game of Spot the Turkey at my expense, but that’s how we roll sometimes. If you follow that link, you’ll see that I’ve gained some weight. More on that later.
I was up quite early Saturday morning. Diane and I bike-pooled to her work on the tandem. Then I rode home to grab my rSogn to meet Tim for the morning ride.
After the ride, I went back, grabbed the tandem, and took it to the shop for some minor repair. I then picked Diane up and headed home.
Later, Diane and I rode the tandem again, this time across the newly-opened Big Four Bridge. We checked out a burger & beer place in Jeffersonville before riding back home. The Big Four Bridge has no car traffic, but the crowds of pedestrians made this a walking-speed ride.
Diane was on her own on getting to work. I had other plans. I had the rSogn packed and ready to go when Tim pulled up in his car with his Atlantis on the rack. We loaded my bike and headed for New Washington Indiana.
Tim and I have ridden the New Washington area before. It’s got enough hills to be interesting, but it’s not brutal. It has enough gravel to add texture to the ride. It’s low-traffic and our Sunday morning began with beautiful weather.
Much of the route was wide-open farmland.
Some of it was a bit more forested.
We had navigation issues. Tim used his Edge GPS, which isn’t meant for routing. I didn’t have the route, and my GPS was at home with a broken mount. We meandered in the general direction, but managed to make a wrong turn on to a long dead-end road. It wasn’t wasted. It was one of the better roads on the ride.
We had planned a reasonable 35 miles, as both of us are out of shape. At 20 miles I was done. My right ankle is still weak. The ankle kept trying to turn while pedaling. It was painful, but I managed the last eight miles back to the car.
After I was home, I still had a few errands to run. I was extremely slow on the bike, but I managed without injury.
Monday, being Memorial Day here in the States, brings various celebrations. Louisville has the Mayor’s Hike, Bike, and Paddle. I had already planned to ride this on the tandem with Diane, but Asher contacted me about riding with him and Denis on their tandem. Tom and Jen joined us on their Rans Screamer (tandem recumbent) – and it was a party.
There was a huge variety of bicycles to see. John brought his velomobile – probably the only one in Louisville.
There were a few ‘bents, and a few tandems, but I only saw one tandem ‘bent: Tom and Jen’s.
The first part of the ride was very crowded. I spent most of that time at a walking pace in close quarters. That’s a bit of a challenge with a tandem among wobbly children.
At one point Denis, started a water fight with me. I retaliated with my water bottle. Diane ended it by dumping water on me. It was already unfair – Denis, Asher’s stoker attacked me, the captain. He had his hands free to aim. I had to steer. Then my own stoker turned against me. All is fair in love, tandems, and water fights. I did get the last squirt in later in the ride. I zoomed past Asher and Denis’s tandem, drenching the surprised Denis along the way.
I have recently put a new saddle on the tandem. I hate it. I think I’ll be changing back to the old one. I was rather sore by the end of the ride. The six of us had a meal and beer at Against the Grain before going our own way.
Over those three days, I rode 104 miles. I’ve certainly done more, but not recently. I’m out of shape and too fat. I went to work today by car. I was really sore. I left early due to a massive headache. I’m slightly sunburned. I guess I need to work on my physical well-being.
I had a minor incident while riding my bike home from work today. A woman stopped at a stop sign, but started again without yielding to traffic (me). I was moving at a decent clip on the Big Dummy.
The Big Dummy has excellent brakes. I think I (barely) missed her car, maybe I grazed it. The panic braking would have been fine on a four-wheeled vehicle, but the swerve and braking led to me hitting the pavement.
The woman stopped, but was nasty and complaining. She tried to blame it on me. I didn’t have a stop sign. She did. I called the police. They weren’t much better. They refused to take a report. One officer said “I’m sorry you fell off your bike“. They never checked her registration, insurance, or license.
The bike has some scuffs, it’s just cosmetic. My hands and left elbow had road grit embedded in them. My left knee got a little scraped through my pants. That’s all pretty minor, and I really don’t even feel it now.
My left shoulder is another story. I have a deep ache in that shoulder and arm. This is not the right should that I’ve struggled with. This is my left shoulder. It’s been fine, until this afternoon.
I wrote a complaint to LMPD for the poor service I got from one of their officers. I hope they follow-up with it, but I’m not hopeful.
So, I had a crappy evening. I’m hoping the shoulder is feeling well enough to ride to work again tomorrow.
I regret selling my Surly LHT. I want another one. One way to fund a new one is to sell an existing bike.
Here’s what I currently have:
Surly Big Dummy
Bacchetta Agio Recumbent
Raleigh Record single-speed
Trek T-900 Tandem
Specialized Crossroads (Diane’s)
Norco VFR4 (Diane’s)
Diane’s bikes and the tandem are staying. The recumbent is staying. I don’t ride it much, but when my neck flares up, I need it. The single-speed is in pieces, but I intend to fix it. I miss it. The Rawland is definitely staying. (Sorry Scott). That leaves the Fargo and the Big Dummy.
I had decided to sell the Fargo to fund a new LHT. Then I’d sell the Big Dummy to simplify. I can’t live without a car now that I’m married to Diane, so we’ll always have her car when needed. The LHT would be commuter/gravel/touring rig. I still have a trailer for cargo if necessary.
I brought the Fargo back upstairs (it had been in the basement) to clean it. I don’t want to sell it, but I don’t ride it often. I did take it out on an awesome ride back in January, but mostly it just sits.
On April 6th, 2014, Diane and I were wed at Duncan Memorial Chapel. This is my third marriage and her second. It’s the first time either of us had a “traditional” wedding.
We had approximately 50 people attend the wedding. It was a good mix of her family and friends, and my friends. I have little family in the area. Asher played the organ for us. His husband, Denis, was there also.
Michael and his wife, Sarah, were able to make the drive. I hadn’t seen Michael in a while. We need to ride bikes together again sometime. He brought his camera and got some great shots.
Tim was my best man. It was great to have him there.
Tom and Jen were able to make it. Patrick couldn’t make the wedding, he was at a funeral (gulp), but he did make it to the reception. Timothy was there, and dressed well with a bow-tie. He likes to pick up women at weddings, but I don’t think there were single women in his age range. In a way, most of the RCCS crew was able to be there.
I hadn’t seen Diane since earlier the day before. I had a beautiful bride.
Once the ceremony was complete, many pictures were taken, as people left to head to the reception. I was really tired of pictures by this point.
The reception was at the BBC (Bluegrass Brewing Company) Taproom. The mood of everything was lighter there. Several people Diane and I both know from the Louisville Ski Club were present.
Once the alcohol was flowing, people loosened up. My daughter and her husband showed up. They had been unable to make it to the wedding. People started acting strangely, especially the bride and groom…
I did find the garter. It eventually ended up on someone’s head.
Our wedding night was a quiet night at home. We needed the rest after such a busy day.
We did have honeymoon plans. We had a rented “cabin” in Brown County Indiana. The “cabin” was actually an upstairs apartment in somebody’s home. It had it’s own deck and hot-tub. It was in the tiny ‘burg of Helmsburg Indiana.
On Monday, we loaded the tandem bike on the car and drove there. We arrived during a cold rain, so we tried to stay warm in the hot tub before going to bed.
All the interesting shops in Brown County are in Nashville Indiana, about six miles from our “cabin”. This was an easy ride on the tandem. The tandem was our transportation for the duration of the honeymoon.
The route between the “cabin” and Nashville was hilly, but scenic and low-traffic.
Nashville is a small town, but it’s full of local shops, restaurants, and bars. It also has a bike shop.
Tim and I had planned a 7:00am ride for this morning. At 6:30 a storm with heavy rain and lightning was moving through. We made the decision to wait it out. By 7:00, things had settled down, and I headed out in the rain (by then, just a drizzle) to meet up for the ride.
I took the more direct, but hillier, route along Eastern Parkway. My loss of fitness was obvious. I was terribly slow up the hills.
My right ankle swells up frequently. I call it a cankle. The calf-portion of the cankle has atrophied due to the achilles tendon not being connected to the foot for a while – then not walking on it – and finally walking carefully on it with a limp. So, I have an atrophied cankle, and I took it out in the rain.
It was about 65F degrees. I dressed in shorts and short sleeves. That was probably under-dressing considering the rain.
Tim and I headed around some neighborhoods to warm up before hitting the hills. I had already warmed up on Eastern Parkway, but I was glad to tone it down a bit.
The hilly roads in the park are a lot of fun. I had to ride the brakes a lot to dry them while descending into a curve, but it’s all part of the fun. There were no accidents or almost-accidents. I am a bit out of practice with fast riding in the rain.
During the ride we had two downpours. One of those times included a little lightning and thunder. It passed. We looped through St. Matthews, Mockingbird Valley, and Indian Hills before heading back to Breadworks for coffee.
I stayed warm during the ride. I think the effort I was putting into keeping up with Tim kept me warm.
We arrived at Breakworks much drier. The rain had let up. We each had coffee and a snack before going our own way.
The ride home was cold. I had sat, cooling off, at Breadworks. My top speed for the day was also in the stretch home.
I got home with 31 miles on the odometer. I took a warm shower, poured another cup of coffee and sat on the front porch with the dogs for a while.
Diane and I had a wonderful wedding, and the marriage has been good so far. Yes, we’ve had an argument, but nothing we won’t get over. Mostly, things are quite good. I really have planned on a big post about the wedding, but I think that’s dead now – over a month later. We wedding was great. The weather was perfect. The reception at BBC Taproom was a blast. I’ll write about the honeymoon – including tandem bike, later.
My temporary job has been extended until the end of the year. I don’t enjoy the job, but being employed is nice. Work has kept me busy, too busy at times. I feel like many other things are falling behind.
My doctor has not sent me to physical therapy for my leg/ankle/achilles. I had my final appointment with my orthopedic surgeon, and he believes all is well. It could take a year to feel normal again, but I have no more activity restrictions.
I still get swelling and soreness sometimes. Walking causes more issues than riding the bike. I still intend to start playing volleyball for the next session. In the meantime, I need to stretch and work on strength.
I’ve gained weight. I haven’t been weighing regularly, but I’m about 260lbs right now. I still drink too much beer. I’ve left the weight issue on the back burner for now. I know I shouldn’t, but I feel like I have to finish the transition to married life and fixing financial issues.
Diane and I are trying to fix some financial issues. We want to own a home someday. Our spending on beer is down – most due to buying it from a store rather than a bar.
I’m on the bike pretty much every day now. Diane and I ride the tandem several times a week. We bike-pooled to work three days this week on the tandem – and plan to do so in the morning again. We work within a few blocks of each other, so it works.
I seldom ride at a fast pace. Serious distance would hurt. This is killing has killed my fitness.
My depression issues have resurfaced again, but in a different way. I’m able to monitor how I feel. Maybe I’m just learning a new coping mechanism. It still sucks, but it doesn’t paralyze me. I can analyze it. I can usually avoid hurting others.
I hope to not go another month without posting. This blog was built on accountability on my weight control. It’s been failing at that recently.