Sunday, December 23, 2007

We Need Backup

I picked up the QR yesterday. After doing some research, I figured out that it is the 2002 model of the Quintana Roo Tequilo. It has Shimano 105 on the front derailleur and Ultegra on the rear. Aluminum frame with carbon fork and carbon aero bars, too. This bike is a 61 so it is a little big, but I'm a big guy.

I'm really leaning towards keeping this and NOT getting a road bike. I can ride the Cervelo on long training rides or rides in good weather and I can use the QR for mid-week sessions or anything in bad weather or high traffic. Any feedback would be appreciated.

It provides me with backup but also helps me conserve the Cervelo.

The old QR, the USA Special Edition, is dead. When the guys at Conte's took the saddle off, the seat post and the frame cracked. The frame was already rusted. I had them take the crank off, too, and put it on the Tequilo. So, I have salvaged what I could and I'll leave the rest in the trash. RIP, USA Special Edition... you served me well. But, it is time to move on.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Back in the Saddle Again

Well, I actually rode a bike outdoors yesterday. I did a quick 15 mile ride on the new Cervelo. I can already tell that if I attain the same bike fitness that I had the last 4 triathlon seasons, that I will drop time off my bike splits. My previous rig had 650s on it and the P2C has 700s. It is definitely lighter and it feels like I'm riding on a feather. My aero bars still don't fit right and I am considering getting carbon aero bars. I go back to Conte's tomorrow for a professional bike fitting. I'll talk it over with Greg at the store. I still don't know how to work my bike computer and I don't even know how to take it off the bike. I guess I ought to read the manual.

I got a Quintana Roo Tequilo out of the deal at Conte's. It is ready for pick up and I am going to head over there today to grab it. I am considering keeping it as my "beater" bike so I don't have to risk the Cervelo on day-to-day training rides. However, I may try to trade it for a road bike or sell it and buy a road bike.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Start Your Engines

I've made my decision. I have purchased a Cervelo P2C. It is a carbon tri bike with Dura Ace components. It is a 2007 edition and was purchased from Conte's in Ballston, VA. Scott McAhren, the store owner, was very helpful and extremely "tri"-friendly. I got a pretty good deal, too, as Scott threw in a Quintana Roo Tequilo in the transaction! So, now I actually have three tri bikes although the mechanic claims that my old QR USA Special Edition is no longer safe to ride. In fact, I cannibalized some parts off the old tri bike and have them being put on the QR Tequilo. When I get that bike back (hopefully this weekend), I'll post some pix.

I am very happy with my purchase. The specs on the bike can be found in a link below. Check out the photos. I feel like a little kid at Christmas as the weather has been too cold to ride and I've been very busy, too. So, I haven't had a chance to cut loose yet. I think I'll have some time this weekend. I haven't ridden a bike outdoors since September 8 so I've got a lot of pent up energy and this bike knows just what to do with it. It rides fast and hopefully will help enable me to cut some time off my bike splits.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

The Plot Thickens

After today's DC Tri Club NTP Program planning meeting, I went over to Conte's Bikes with club president Chad Lewis and his fiance Kirsten. She was going to look at some tri bikes and I wanted to look at Cervelo and Conte's is a local Cervelo dealer. I was kind of spacing around the shop and came across a Cervelo P2C. It's a carbon frame tri bike with Dura Ace components. It is cherry. To top it off, they're selling it for $2700. I test rode the bike and a Cannondale Slice that they had in my size, too. The Cervelo was so much nicer. I plan on going over tomorrow and completing the transaction.

Here is a complete review of the bike and I found many of the things stated in the review to be right on. I believe this is the bike for me.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Out of the Mouth of Babes...

comes great wisdom. Yesterday morning (a Saturday), I took my 10 year old daughter Jessica Rose to Starbucks. We were out of coffee and she was hungry. So, I order her a chocolate donut and a drink and I get a low fat, turkey bacon breakfast sandwich and a cup of coffee - Breakfast Blend... black. While they are making the sandwich, Jessica has her donut. I was hungry too, and wanted to "warm up my mouth" before taking a sip of coffee. I asked JR for a bite of her donut. Without flinching, she flatly stated, "No, you're on that crazy diet." Oh yeah. I had momentarily forgotten. She was right.

This was a lesson, thought quite small, of how much of a team effort this enterprise I am undertaking will be. And, quite frankly, it is a microcosm of how a team effort is required throughout our lives. We can't do it alone. Sometimes, the only thing between us and whatever it is that is a challenge... will be the words of a 10 year old.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Week in Review

This week has been rather busy in real life so the training has taken a dip. I intended to swim, bike and run at least once this week. I didn't. I did stick to my weighlifting routine and have stuck to my diet of no trigger foods. It was tough as it snowed this week and a mug of cocoa was sounding pretty good. But, I stuck to my guns and managed to get through this full week without slipping. Seriously... no pizza, sweets, fried food, latte, cocoa or desserts.

The weightlifting is starting to pay off and I am packing on some muscle. I have to get some measurements done so I can chart where I'm starting at here and I should also post some photos so we can see the progression.

No progress on the bike search, although my training buddy Chad, president of DC Tri Club, made a list of bikes that I should check out.

- Kuota K Factor
- Kestrel Talon
- Quintana Roo Seduza
- Felt B2

Hopefully, I can make some time on Saturday or Sunday this weekend to look at some more bikes... and perhaps even clip in!

Monday, December 3, 2007

It's Not About the Bike

My search for a new tri bike has begun. Yesterday, I visited Race Pace in Columbia, MD to look at their tri bike selection. They carry Felt and Trek. I looked at the Equinox 9 made by Trek ($2000) and at the Felt B2 ($3400). I'd really like to buy a road bike and a tri bike as on some rides, a tri bike just is not appropriate.

Currently, I ride a Quintana Roo USA Special Edition. I bought it three years ago and I have worn it out. Put in a lot of miles on that thing. Something that stands out in my mind is that I did my first tri on a 20 year old Schwinn that is really just a commuter bike. The QR is a tri-specific bike and I never did more than three minutes faster on the Columbia Tri course than I did on that old Schwinn. That has taught me that Lance Armstrong is right... it isn't about the bike. It's about the motor... my legs and my mind.

However, I do need to get a new bike as the QR is exhausted. Looking at the B2 has been an eye opener on the newer technology and ideas that have been applied to tri-bike construction. At the same time, I'd like to keep the money I spend realistic. I could spend $5000 + on a bike... but my head AND my heart tells me that it would be wiser to put that kind of my money into my daughter's college savings account than into a bike.

My search for a bike should take about 30 days. I want to check out lots of different choices and balance performance with financial sense.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

11 Months to Showtime

I am a member of the DC Tri Club. We have been Mid-Atlantic Region Club champs three years running. The club is very active and is participating in the USAT Club Challenge. This month, the focus is on swimming. This is a good thing as I didn't swim the whole month of November. I've got to get back in the pool.

I have two other things to focus on this month... strength training and nutrition. As I posted earlier, I am in a heavy weight lifting routine. I have been very consistent with my weightlifting workouts and they are starting to payoff. Definitely packing on the muscle... which also means increase in body weight. I weighed in yesterday at 208. I'd like to be 190 lbs 11 months from today.

So, another goal this month is to eliminate "trigger" foods from my diet. Just for 31 days. No pizza, cocoa, cake, french fries, chips or other food that is, let's say, counterproductive. Already this morning (it's 8:23 am), I've been offered chicken wings. My daughter talked me into cooking her some wings that I had left over from the Cowboys vs. Packers game on Thursday night. She said she couldn't eat them all, so she offered some to me. Tempting... but no. It wouldn't look good if I couldn't go one hour (woke up at 7:30 am) without breaking my promise... NO TRIGGER FOOD THIS MONTH.

This is going to be tough.

OK, so there you have it... December 2007... 11 months to showtime... focus this month... swimming, strength training and better diet.