Last week saw me only able to get two rides in due to some nasty, rainy weather almost all week. Plus, on Saturday, I woke up with some serious sinus issues that kept me from riding. I’m actually quite lucky I haven’t gotten real sick with my wife and two of my daughters under the weather. Luckily, I’ve dodged that bullet.

Like I said, only about 24 miles on the bike last week which, honestly, stinks. Not much I can do about it though except start this week off right and that’s what I did this morning. I was up at 5 AM and rolling by 5:20. Aside from being about 40F outside, the weather was perfect – crystal clear and no wind. I felt like I pushed it hard this morning but know in spots I let the pace slack off some as I’m just not conditioned yet to maintain a high pace for my full hour ride. I’m getting 16-17 mph comfortably for some parts of the ride so I’m hoping that before long I’ll see my pace for these morning rides increase to the upper 14 mph range and start pushing 15 mph plus. That 15 mph pace is kind of a barrier for me and I’m not sure if it’s physical or mental. Probably a little of both but likely more physical than mental.

Anyway, the numbers for today’s ride are: 13.1 miles in 57 min at a 13.8 mph pace. I really thought I was faster than that.

Tested out the Chain Cleaner

If you follow the Biking To Live Facebook Page you know that I gave the steed a good cleaning to get rid of the road grime it had collected. I also wanted to try out the new chain cleaner I got from Nashbar. The chain cleaner didn’t come with any degreaser so I picked up some Park CB-2 Citrus Chain-Brite Cleaner from the local bike shop.

I’ll write a more detailed review of the chain cleaner soon but wanted to show you some pics of the results. I was really impressed at the job it did for a $9 chain cleaner. Here are the before and after pics (they’re big pics so let’em load):

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Another awesome benefit of cleaning the chain showed up during this morning’s ride. Immediately upon setting out I noticed that my bike was a lot quieter. A lot. I was totally blown away and througout my entire ride I couldn’t help but shake my head. Of course it shifted better too.

A Word on My Goals

One of my cycling goals for 2011 was to ride 2000 miles this year. As of today, I’ve got 275 miles on the bike so far this year which puts me at 13.75% of my 2000 mile goal.

Some questions for the readers:

  1. Do you clean your chain/drivetrain yourself or have the local bike shop do it?
  2. How many miles do you have on the bike so far this year? Are you on track to meet your mileage goal this year? Do you have a mileage goal this year?