April 2011 Wrap-up

Training Summary


Number of swims: 0

Distance: 0

Improvement over previous month: None



Number of bike trips: 13

Total Distance: 128 miles, 9016 feet of climbing

Improvement over previous month: +9 miles



Number of runs: 2

Total Distance: 7.3 miles 

Improvement over previous month: -12.98 (much lower this month)


So my training fell off what I expected in April. May should be much better with the commute challenge and bike-to-work day. As usual I joined the team from work called "Up Hill Both Ways" which describes the route we take. Yes, we seriously go up a big hill both directions.

Cat-6 riders in NYC, courtesy of Good.is

Cat 6

I posted a couple months back on Cat-6 racing.

According to Gustavo, a fellow triathlete from work, "Cat-6 is ON!" What in the world is Cat-6? Well, it started out on the BikeRadar.com forum page in 2008 with a thread titled "Silly Commute Racing." 1039 pages and 3 years later the thread is still going strong. They even came up with a scoring/ranking system to see how well you are doing each day. A blog entry from the New York Times got a lot more people thinking about it.

Even more links: Commute racing from Good.is who I think is credited with coming up with the term "Cat-6", and a view of Cat-6 from Shanghai.

Cold Weather Commuting

I thought I was tough because I tried to bike commute through the Seattle winter. Nope, I'm a wuss because I don't ride when it snows/freezes outside. While looking for articles on Cat-6 I ran across this video about bike commuting in Chicago, even through the winter. The helmets and clothes make me think that the video is a few years old but it still makes me look bad. The coldest temp ever seen while I was riding was 28F. A guy in the video doesn't have a problem with 22F. Chicago does have a leg-up on the Seattle in one way: Chicago is pancake flat (compared to the hills in Seattle). If I knew my commute was going to be cold for 1/3 of the year I would probably invest in the studded tires to do it. For now I'm not willing to drop the coin.

Fun Articles

Why Bicyclists Hate Stop Signs - I know I hate them (while on a bike anyway). This article does a fine job of explaining in a somewhat-scientific manner why cyclists should be able to treat stop signs as yield signs. Yet another reason for car drivers to hate cyclists.

The Truth About Running Vs. Walking - I've always heard from various sources that walking and running 1 mile required the same amount of energy so, if you are trying to lose weight, it made no difference if you were walking or running. My father, a life-time distance runner, has always disagreed with me. Looks like he was right all along. Or was he?

How To Get Your City To Notice and Fix Potholes  - This is priceless. One of these days I'll actually try it. Click to link to see why it is so funny.