Feb 22, 2009

by george, i think i’ve got it now

i’ve become a litle bit obsessed with those rollers that the roller fairy dropped off the other day.

because if i had to get on that trainer one more time, cause it was raining, or too windy, or snowing or i didn’t have a big consecutive chunk of time to ride because i was always dropping someone off, or picking someone up and running to the market in between to get that one thing i forgot on the previous trip; someone was gonna have to shoot me.

i’m just sayin.

i tried them out on wednesday. the first attempt is here. the little crash into the doorjamb shook me up a bit and so i took a breather to eat dinner. then i got back on, only this time i couldn’t even let go of the wall. which made me mad. so i took another breather. and then i got back on again and did it. and i stayed on for 20 minutes. that whole, 3rd times a charm video is here.

i tried again yesterday. i was feeling ridiculously optimistic and set them up in the middle of the living room so i could watch the tour of california. i clipped in. put my hand on a chair to steady myself and then promptly chickened out to go back to my safe little cocoon of a vestibule where if i fell, it was into a door on either side of me, about 4 inches away.

once in my happy little vestibule on the rollers, i settled into the work of breathing and relaxing. here’s the thing about me and the bike: i have a tendency to be tense. my elbows lock. my neck seizes up in a little spasm that i always attributed to long rides and poor bike fit. in a lightbulb roller moment that first day, i learned that the neck stuff has nothing to do with long ride, cause it was killing me 5 minutes into a roller session. and i just had a snazzy bike fit. i need to relax!

and those locked elbows are what will make the bike go all wiggy and do crazy ivans. if you do that on the rollers, you’ll fall into the door.

i’ve always wanted to learn how to meditate, but was never very good at it. couldn’t keep my mind focused, or open, or breathe through my third eye or whatever it is they tell you to do. and once my mind wandered cause i was thinking about what i needed to get at the market, or all the laundry i needed to fold, it was all over.

on the rollers, if i lose focus, the possibility of falling into the door has been exponentially increased. i’m hoping that in time, i won’t have to work so hard to relax. cause its’ exhausting.

so i get on. clip in. look up. relax. and breathe. and then i just ride and ride and ride. sometimes i’ll focus on the spot in the front hallway that desperately needs to be mopped, or i’ll look at the bunch of flowers on the welcome home mat in front of the front door. sometimes i’ll glance to the side to catch a glimpse of the tour. every now and then, i’ll glance at the cyclo computer to see how much time i’ve been rolling or what my speed is. i got really brave yesterday and shifted, and then pedaled faster and harder. relax, breathe, bend your elbows a bit.

and look at that spot that needs to be mopped.


sarah said...

Looking really steady now! You'll be out in the middle of a room soon!

Unknown said...

faster! faster! faster!

hey, did you get your hair cut? it looks super cute.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I'm impressed. I am a cycling novice and have never seen rollers before... Caroline from Burrow House suggested I check out your blog - I have so many questions but I will narrow it down to just one. I am participating in my first triathlon this weekend on my dodgy old racer but would like to buy a new road bike...any recommendations?

zanne said...

Hey Beth, thanks for stopping by! I'm fairly new to all of this too, having only been riding/racing for a year. I came from a running background & one of the 'rules of thumb' in running was to never change your equipment (buy a new pair of running shoes, shorts, etc) right before a race. Don't know if that officially holds true for cycling, but honestly - my thought is that if your dodgy old racer got you this far in training for your first triathlon, I'd stick with it!! Ah - just saw your post on the upcoming tri. I'll pop by your blog & comment there! Again, thanks for stopping over here!

Sarah - Thanks, middle of room may still take some time, but I do feel more steady.

Lauren - right! must pedal faster ... once steven stopped filming, i was able to finally shift & take it up a weensy notch! weesny being operative word. Yes - chopped all my hair off. Thanks! I love it

Anonymous said...

where did you get your snazzy bike fit?

Anonymous said...

ah, that third eye makes me think of one of my all time favorite movies, Bull Durham. Man I love that movie.

Anonymous said...

also, your short hair is cute. :)

Anonymous said...

Hi there Suzanne,

Thanks for your words of wisdom :)
My coach has already given us the 'don't go out and buy a new bike right before the race' talk so I promise I won't!
I went to my local bike shop this morning and tried out a few different models - wow, I see what you mean about getting the right fit. I realise the old racer I am on is about four sizes too big for me - hence the discomfort. And, hello, new bikes are so light.
The bike I liked the best was the Trek 4.5 - SO light- but it was $4,000!!!
Geez louise, I mean my first car only cost $500! I think my kids might resent me if I spent their University Education fund on a new set of wheels for myself.

Now I know what size I am looking for I'll see if I can pick one up second hand...you never know your luck, right?

I am looking forward to the race on Sunday, I just hope the swell isn't too big or I might end up seasick.

Thanks again


zanne said...

anon - a good friend and teammate did the bike fit for me!

prickly - wait a minute. were you even born when Bull Durham came out? ;-)

beth - i started riding on my husbands old steel bike with shifters on the downtube ... it was defintely fun to upgrade (to another hand me down, hmmmm) to my husbands'carbon fibre bike. sheesh: i am seeing a trend in the hand me down thing! I have been coveting a bike at the shop - one that would be all mine, but like you, wonder if kids wouldn't mind crooked teeth for the rest of their lives so we can skip the braces and mama can get a new bike. I don't think so! Hand me down it is.

Glad you figured out your proper size ... good luck with your shopping & good luck in your race this weekend!

Judi said...

hey girlie! you and groover edit those videos way better than i ever could. is steven taping you? i wish dominic would video tape me in different places. my videos are SO lame compared to yours and groovers.

ANYWAYS! rollers make you exhausted MENTALLY as much as physically, I am finding out. the motion rollers are sooooo much easier. maybe over the summer dominic can turns yours into motion rollers so that next winter you can have them.

i am riding about 20 miles in an hour and i love it. do you have a wireless computer so you can see your distance?

good job on shifting! i have yet to do that....

take care-

Judi said...

p.s. it took some big ass balls to cut your long beautiful hair off. it looks good.

zanne said...

Judi - you are so right ... I feel like it is a workout for my brain as well as body! I need to increase cadence, right now, am only doing about 15 mph. (Yes, I do have a cyclocomputer so I can see speed, distance and time) - but it means I have to look down to get a glance! I can't get that info from any trainer workout, cause my computer thingy is attached to the front wheel. Another reason I love the rollers!! I can shift, but haven't shifted into big ring yet.

Saw your offer to convert to motion rollers - these rollers are on loan (although I am willing to bet anything that the guy who loaned them is looking to upgrade & is going to offer to sell them to us!)

Big ass balls comment made me laugh ... took about 4 haircuts over the course of 2 months to finally get here - had I had bigger cahones i would have chopped it all off in one fell swoop! I've learned that I love it really long, or really short - no in beteween. So now I am stuck here for a while; which is good, cause i am loving it!

and yes, Steven taped me on that last, most recent one. The other two versions I just set the camera on a stool in front hallway. The editing is pretty easy, we just used whatever software came on the computer. I really wanted to use my own tunes, but iTunes made things difficult, so we went with the free stuff that came with the software - funny enough, it was the EXACT same tunes as Groover! Think we're using the same software. I love your videos - you got some good ones when Dominic was filming -

Stuart said...

Great stuff, one question what benefit do rollers have over trainers other than the the computer thing, although mine works on the back wheel/pedals anyway?

Anonymous said...

HA! That's awesome! But it looks painful! Did you huut yow ewbow? Owie!

Gotta Run..... said...

Those rollers are insane! Just watching your video scares me. You are a hardcore girl!!

What is that song? I want it.

zanne said...

Hey Stuart - the purpose of the rollers is to work on your form and spin, they help you learn how to hold a steady line; and they're good for base training, lower HR & lower resistance workouts. Being on the rollers will make your weaknesses more prominent so you know what to focus on to improve (spin, relaxing, etc).

There's not a lot of resistance on the rollers, although I've heard that smaller roller sizes have more resistance that larger sizes - the ones we have happen to be the smaller ones.

I plan to use the rollers to help with my spin, holding a line & learning to just relax in general -- I will still use the trainer for when I need to do high intensity, higher HR workouts.

Robin - If I can do rollers, ANYONE can do them. I promise you that! The song is by Karsh Kale - came as part of editing package - name escapes me right now.