Lots happening at One Gear Headquarters. We have printed up some sample tshirts to show vendors as we get ready for the first line of One Gear apparel. Here are some samples of the shirts that will be going on sale very soon:
GEARS ARE FOR WIMPS | Logo Style
GEARS ARE FOR PUSSIES | Ghetto Style
ONE BIG GEAR
GEARS ARE FOR PUSSIES | For the ladies
We'll post links to the store shortly. Spread the word!
This past Saturday was the 4th race in the Monterey CCCX mountain bike series. It was rainy, wet, muddy and fun. The wet muddy sand took its toll on my rear Surly bearings to the point where I could barely freewheel. That is a story for another day. This blog is solely focused on a hysterical insight from our 13 year old Action Wipes pit crew member on how to judge the speed of mountain biker based on the mud stripe up his back:
This has been a bitch of a week. It seems as though every time I feel like I'm riding well and feeling strong, something happens that throws my training for a loop. One week it is 70+ hours of working my ass off with zero time to workout, stretch, or even take a walk to these past two weeks with the nastiest, 9 days of head-splitting, throat-raping cough combined with a two-day cross-country-20 hours-of-travel-for-a-4-hour-meeting trip to cramp my training for this next race on Saturday. Here is the picture to prove it.
I had high hopes after looking at the Single Speed XC Race Results for the last 3 CCCX races (of which I only competed in the first and third). Based on the cumulative points I am currently standing 8th out of 18. Well, holy crap... If I put even a modicum of effort into training, showed up to every race left and improved my times each race, I could finish the season in at least the top 3rd. Hell, for a guy that finished in last place at Sea Otter last year, that would kick ass.
After that revelation, I booked some time with Julia Pickslay, my trainer, made plans for some weekend rides and got ready for two weeks of solid training before CCCX #4 this coming weekend. Whoa.....not so fast big boy. That cough came swooping in like nobody's business and kicked my ass for 9 straight days with nary a leg squat or spin on the trainer for the last week and a half. I feel like a loaf on a log right now.
Today is Tuesday and CCCX #4 is fast approaching this Saturday. While it would be easy to feel sorry for myself and foresee a miserable 2 hours of getting my ass royally kicked by these dudes that clearly have more time to train for weekend races than I do, I have decided to prevail and at least not lose any ground in the standings this coming Saturday.
I'll be there on my neon blue Niner One pedaling my ass off with my one good gear because single speeds kick ass and gears are for pussies....so there.
Figured I might post more from my rides if I could do it right from the iPhone (thank you Verizon!) Here Are some shots from the East Cuesta Grade fire road. This is a 5 mile up-and-back (10 mile RT) that I like to use as a timing run to gauge my fitness. It is not technical at all and happens to have fantastic views as you can see here.
I have always had this feeling that Single Speed riders tended to be "older" than other mountain bikers. But this was confirmed as I was checking out the competition for this year's Sea Otter Classic Single Speed race. Since there was no Cat 3, I had to enter the Cat 2 class. So check it out....As of today, one month to race date, there are 20 riders entered and outside of one lone 29 year old a couple of guys in their 30's everyone else falls into the 40-50 year old range. The average age of all the riders is 43 years old! Old guys rule.Why is this? I've asked a few guys while riding and there really is no general consensus that can truly be defined as age - specific. So here are my reasons:
Single Speed bikes are simpler to maintain (I don't want to have to dick around with more parts than I have to)
Single Speed bikes remind me of my old BMX days (one gear only)
It is more fun to pass younger dudes riding 27 gears uphill (actually--passing anyone on a single speed is more fun)
1. A SINGLE SPEED RIDER ISN’T BUILT IN A DAY: Go easy on your knees "...and avoid steep or long hills until you get the rhythm of it and learn how to climb without overdoing yourself."
2. THE GUN SHOW: “Strong arms and overall upper body strength is a definite advantage for getting a little extra power ... up a hill."
3. GET OVER THE FRONT: All that tugging at the bars and lunging into the pedals can make it hard to keep the front end planted. So Fuzzy advocates using a lower front end on a single-speed to keep your weight forward when climbing and standing.
4. IN THE LAND OF JAMMED DRIVETAINS THE SINGLE-SPEED IS KING: When the going gets muddy, opt for simplicity.
5. THE HARDWARE STORIES: Use single-speed specific cogs,a bomb-proof rear hub and consider using Rotor’s elliptical Q-Rings.
6. UNDER TENSION: Both Fuzzy and I love the Niner eccentric bottom bracket to adjust chain tension, instead of horizontal drop-outs.
7. GRUNT LIKE AN OX, OR SPIN LIKE A RABBIT? : Really a choice of preference, but since I am an older dude I prefer to go for a lower ratio so I can get over the pedals on the uphills. Fuzzy says he can spin upwards of 200 RPM's.
8. WALKING IS INEVITABLE: Embrace the walk! Sooner or later you'll have to.
9. MOMENTUM IS YOUR FRIEND: Momentum is key for a single-speeder. Be smooth and keep your speed up.
10. KNOW THE COURSE: Pre-riding is a good idea for any kind of race, but for a single speeder, you'll want to make sure you know the course as best you can pick your gearing and tire selection, but also to help determine those key points of momentum.
Why ride a single speed? It probably stems from my youth. I rode BMX bikes in Colorado and we used to ride these little bikes around the local hiking trails...way before "Mountain Bikes" came about. Probably even before Gary Fisher and his crew were messing around the Marin Trails way back when. Probably the best part about riding a single speed (as a guy who is well into his 40's) is passing those weenies up hill who are pushing 27 gears. WTF? Who needs gears when you have two good legs. That's why I think Gears are For Pussies.