Saturday, March 29, 2008

Spring has Sprung

The wildflowers are blooming in Fulshear this weekend so I guess that means spring has officially arrived at our favorite riding spot. Liz and I loaded the biked early this morning and met Ken, Danny, Jim, Orin, Debbie and Pat for a ride in Fulshear. This was my first trip there since my broken femur and I was excited to be going. We had a little drizzle on and off during the half hour ride to the Park and Ride lot, but I was undeterred. As long as the roads were dry where we planned to ride it was still a "go" for me. I'm still not ready for the traffic in Fulshear so, after stopping at the lot to say howdy to the gang, Liz and I drove back into the country back roads to unload the bikes and get a few miles in. Unfortunately, the roads were still wet. Reluctantly, we decided not to ride, at least in Fulshear, today.

The rest of the crew did ride and Teambent photographer Debbie forwarded these shots. Left to right: Jim, Orin, Ken, Danny and Pat at P Wall.

Ken's beautiful carbon fiber Bacchetta.

Danny, one of the owners of Cycle Genius, designed and built this beauty. It's a prototype right now. I haven't ridden it, but it's so stable I've watched Danny ride it a mile or two with his hands laced behind his head.

After Liz and I got back to town we hooked up with Paul and Cyndy who had been wanting to try my Seavo. Their prior experience on a tandem was a ride on a rented EZ Tandem. We saddled them up on my Seavo while Liz and I rode chase on singles. They seemed to like the bike and I think Paul may be in the market for a tandem recumbent soon. I managed to get 10 miles in, which is a good thing.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Tour De Houston

The 2008 Tour De Houston was last weekend. This 20, 40 and 70 mile ride starts and ends in downtown Houston. This ride has been around for the last few years, but it's one of the few I have never ridden. I gave a passing thought to riding it, but I knew that I'm not nearly ready. I still have very little speed or endurance on the bike and the thought of riding on darkened streets in downtown Houston was not something I wanted to risk. I do miss riding terribly though and I considered driving down to the ride just to see and greet old friends. Then I saw a letter on the newsgroup from Paul, a new rider to the group, who was renting a tandem and needed a way to transport it to the ride. I happily volunteered. It turns out that Paul and Cyndy live just down the street from me.

The EZ Tandem Paul rented is probably the longest tandem I've transported on the Draftmaster. It took some adjustment of the tray and we only had about 6" clearance between the back wheel and the pavement, but somehow it worked.

Although I didn't ride, it was still alot of fun to rise in the dark, drive to Paul's and rack his bike. I guess the ritual of the ride prep is part of the pleasure of riding for me. Plus, I made a couple of new biking friends in the balance! The pictures below were taken by Debbie on the ride.

Paul and Cyndy on the EZ Tandem.

The City closed the Hardy Toll Road for the ride so there was no traffic on this leg.

I've seen this rather unique bike on other rides around town although I've never talked to the owner. It looks pretty uncomfortable to me.

Our ride photographer, Debbie.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

The Ride Back

The weather was so fabulous this afternoon that I decided to take it off and see if I could pedal the Tour Easy around the neighborhood. I've put in some miles on the V2 on the trainer and on the recumbent machine at rehab and my leg feels fine. The problem with the V2, at least right now, is the high bottom bracket. I don't quite have my full strength back and it takes a bit of an effort to get my foot up to the pedals. The Tour Easy doesn't present any of these issues. I can get my feet to the pedals and I can get on and off the bike with ease.
So, with a little anxiety and a watchful sag driver behind me, I pushed off down the street. I needn't have worried. The bike felt stable and comfortable and the wind and sun in my face was wonderful. Bad weather is moving in tomorrow, but I will be out at Fulshear on Saturday to try it again.

Sunday, March 2, 2008


It is two months to the day since my accident and I've come a long way. I've progressed from the wheelchair to the walker and now to one crutch. I can actually walk a few steps without the crutch but it's not pretty. I'm going to out patient therapy twice a week at TIRR now and look forward to the day, hopefully in a few weeks, when I can walk like I used to. It's amazing how quickly all those important walking muscles atrophy when not in use.

Debbie, Pat and Ben had a beautiful ride in Fulshear yesterday in good weather. I wish I could have been there. Apparently no one can open the pictures Debbie mailed to the group so I'm posting them here.

Miles Ridden Last Year: 3200
Miles Ridden This Year: 69
Time Since My Last Ride: 2 months
This Year's Goal: 2500