Miles of Life ~ My life as a donut Kylie Donia

Archive for November, 2007

PowerTap night 1 & day 1 — the setup & the first ride

Thursday, November 29th, 2007

Santa came early and dropped off PowerTap SL 2.4 wheels (the wireless version) for Mike and me! A number of people have expressed interest in our learning process with them, so I’m going to blog our progress of getting up to speed and learning to make the most out of them in our training.

We got them set up last night. Not too big of a deal — Rich (of wheelbuilder.com) built up awesome sexxy wheels so we just had to move over our cassettes, tubes, and tires. Then we added the computer mount to the bikes.

Here are the wheels before we got started:

I will post the full bikes once we have our new black front wheels on them as well.

We then spent the evening reading the manuals and playing with the computers: setting the time, learning a bit about what was displayed where and how to see different things. Definitely not straight forward, but actually pretty simple once you read the manual. I guess it is actually fairly similar to a regular bike computer like a cateye, but as I haven’t used one of those in a long time (and was just using my Garmin Forerunner 301) I’m not used to that interface right now.

This morning we got up bright and early and took them for a ride. It was fun to see the numbers and wonder what it all meant. I’m such a geek — I’m excited to have my first file to upload and (with the help of Coach MarkyV) learn from.

However that brings me to my first sticking point, and I have done some limited googling to no avail so far. It seems the PT manual is missing the info of what to do once the data is collected:

  • Once I have a trip in the PT computer, do I have to upload it to my computer before doing the next trip, or will it save multiple trips? How many will it save?
  • Once I do upload it to my computer, how do I reset the trip to start a new one?
  • While Saris does provide software for use with the PT, I know there are a number of websites that are popular for coaches to be able to give feedback, etc. Which one should I use (and yes, I’m waiting to hear from Marky on that one)?
  • If I upload the file to my computer, is it then gone from the PT? Or could I upload it a number of times if I needed to?

Right now I’ve put an email in to Marky, and I’m sitting here with a computer full of data just waiting to be looked at! And at home I have the highly recommended book Training and Racing with a Power Meter just waiting for me to keep reading it 🙂

Oh, and here is a bit of background on how we came to be the proud parents of new PowerTap wheels:

So why did we get power? Because we’ve heard such good things about how it can help you improve on the bike, and in particular make the best use of your time. As I’m going back to grad school part time in January (with full time work) I’m going to need to make the best use of my training time for sure!

And why PowerTap, not Ergomo or SRM? All of them seem to be reliable and useful, but we have multiple bikes: Mike has a road and a tri bike, and I have a tri bike and hope to add a road one as well soon. So we wanted something easy to switch between bikes, and we didn’t want to spend a fortune getting both bikes set up with it. It’s expensive enough to have to buy two of them! No need to up that to 4! Plus Rich at Wheelbuilder is a good friend, and he uses one as well as being a dealer of them, so we’d have him to learn from.

What we did for Thanksgiving

Thursday, November 29th, 2007

Ok so I haven’t been posting here a lot. Just so much of life going on — and work! So things are good, and here is a fun story of my Thanksgiving weekend with Mike. To see a pic fullsize just click on it. Enjoy!

It all started Thursday morning as we headed off to the airport to fly to the Bay Area to visit my (Kylie’s) family. We arrived with just enough time for a run down the street while Mom finished cooking (she never lets me help!).

We were done running just in time, but our family dinner was still cold. And for the best of reasons. Before sitting down my mom, her boyfriend Dennis, my sister Becky, Mike, and I took dinner to my grandparents who weren’t up for a big group meal. It was great to see them happy as it has been a tough year for them.

Back home, our dinner involved my mom, sister, and I reliving stories of childhood (of course lots of giggling resulted).

The next day Mike and I headed out on another run. Although we said we’d be back in around 2 hours, it ended up being about 4! First there was the hike up to the trails – about half a mile and 700ft of climbing.

Once up the hill we visited the old Nike site where missiles were set up during the Cold War, where there is a great view of Mount Tam.

Then it was off down the trails for a loop we found as we went.

It took us through forested areas

and right along the water

We don’t always get to run together (he’s much faster) so this was a special treat.

(Looks like the embedded youtube videos aren’t working… so go watch it there)

We saw some deer, and Mike found…

… a snake! Which he proceeded to throw down the trail at me

Mike kept stopping and posing, and like magic a girl would appear beside him!

And sometimes he’d stop for other reasons

In the end it was 12.5 miles, about 3700 ft of climbing, and a whole lot of pictures and fun. Oh, and then we also got to do that fun hike back down to the house.

Then it was off to the stores where my mom was getting us Christmas presents since we’ll be in Canada for it this year. We came away with fun holiday bike socks, and I got a pair of pants I’m proud to say are smaller than I remember wearing since I moved from the girls to the women’s department! Yay tris 🙂

Saturday we went for another run right along the ocean.

(Looks like the embedded youtube videos aren’t working… so go watch the second one there)

After that we were handed off to my Dad and stepmom, Wendy. And between eating and watching football we went out for a great walk on some trails around their house.

I don’t think it could have been a better weekend. Some awesome runs, great food, lots of relaxing, and getting to see all of my family.

And then we just had to catch an early flight home on Sunday, and head straight to the good ol’ hockey game. It was an exciting match, with the Ducks finally getting a lead (3-2) with not much time left, and holding off the Kings during a 6 on 3 power play for the last minute and a half of the game!

It’s hard to get back to the daily grind after that!