Thursday, July 21, 2005

Tri-geek toys

Things have changed since I started doing this sport in 1983. It was simpler that's for sure. Bathing suit, shorts, goggles, running shoes, helmet, sunglasses, towel and a cap. All of it fit in a plain old gym bag. I had one of those black Bell helmets that became popular in the early 80s. Ugly, hot, and heavy. As the attached photo indicates I was very low tech back then.

I reflect back on those simpler times as my latest and greatest new tri toy arrived Wednesday. I finally broke down and got a Rudy Project time trial helmet. I didn't get the totally tricked out one with the visor and earflaps, but I got the Sython open. I don't know if it will make me ride faster, but I'll look faster. It even looks fast standing still.

I'm a firm believer in don't try anything new on race day, so I decided I would take it out for a test ride on Thursday. Normally on Tuesdays and Thursdays I do a 50+ mile ride with a group of guys from my bike club, and other assorted roadies. Since I have a race on Saturday, I wanted make sure I didn't do too much. I figured I'd meet the group on Pinebrook Blvd, and do the cool down loop. I headed south, not quite sure when they'd be heading the other direction. I got to the end of Pinebrook, and decided I would go back the other direction, and catch them on my next trip down. Pinebrook is a about a 7 mile loop that is good for time trialing. I often see one of the juniors who used to race for our bike club practicing his time trialing. Yes he has a totally cool TT helmet. However he's 16 years old, and he is fast!

I had mixed feelings about whether I really wanted meet up with the group or not. Somehow I figured I get a lot of crap about the helmet. Also this was a good opportunity to just sit on the aerobars and not have to worry about the wheel in front or in back of me. I finished off my second loop and still no sign of the group. I could have continued back for a third loop, but then I was going to end out with more miles then I wanted. I know if I had met them I would have gone on with them, and what I had done on my own was really what this ride was about. So I turned off and went up the hill back towards home.

I am trying to act more like a triathlete, and less like a cyclist that does triathlons. By dialing back the mileage on this day, I'm saving my legs, and not worrying about my roadie friends getting more miles.

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