Suns Out, Guns Out

Summer time fitness check in:

It’s been a couple months since the spring semester has let out and since I’ve been back state side (more on my Taiwan trip to come, my bad for the delay!).

Here’s what I’ve been up to in my fitness game.

First up – Measurements:

  • Neck: 13″
  • Shoulders: 41″
  • Chest: 36″
  • Biceps: 11.5″
  • Waist: 32″
  • Hips: 39″
  • Thigh: 22″
  • Calf: 14.5″

Weight: 142.8# BF: 21%

Next up – 1RMs:

Barbells:

  • Bench Press: 100#
  • Bent Over Rows: 90#
  • Dead lift: 205# (new PR!)
  • Squat: 125#

Dumbbells:

  • Arm Curls: 25#
  • Arm Extension: 40#
  • Shoulder Press: 30#
  • Shoulder Shrug: 60#
  • Lateral/Frontal Shoulder Raise: 15#

Stacked Machines:

  • Leg Press: 315# (222.705# at a 40° angle)
  • Calf Press: 585# (413.595# at a 40° angle – another new PR!)
  • Leg Extension: 175#
  • Seated Leg Curls: 145#
  • Hip Abduction: maxed out
  • Hip Adduction: maxed out
  • Chest Press: 100#
  • Lateral Pull Down: 100#
  • Seated Rows: 100#

Haven’t done much running at all this year; missed the PGH Marathon (ran every year since 2010) due to being out of the country (which is a pretty cool reason) but I’ve been biking everywhere and doing my best to keep up with the National Bike Challenge (May – Sept). I’ve also been hitting the gym for some lifting time about 2-3x a week, keeping it casual with alternating upper/lower body focus days plus some abdominal work.

https://i0.wp.com/i.istockimg.com/file_thumbview_approve/64753543/5/stock-photo-64753543-man-practising-weightlifting.jpg

Upper body focus days:

  • Bench press
  • Lat pull downs
  • Bent rows
  • Biceps curls
  • Triceps extensions
  • Overhead press

Abdominals:

  • Incline crunches
  • Incline Russian twists with medicine ball
  • Oblique bends with plate

Lower body focus days:

  • Squats – barbell, on bosu ball, free weights
  • Deadlifts – barbell
  • Leg / Calf press – hip sled
  • Lunges – weighted with plates or dumbbells, walking

Abdominals: variations of above list

Biking:

Stats:
Challenge:
  • 969.2 miles in 46 days
Year to date:
  • 1,359.7 miles in 82 days

January – 13 out of 31 days, 106.1 miles total

February – 7 out of 29 days, 62.5 miles total

March – 3 out of 31 days, 29.2 miles total

April – 13 out of 30 days, 192.8 miles total

May – 20 out of 31 days, 440.6 miles total

June – 25 out of 30 days, 509.6 miles total

July – just started

Aside from commuting I’ve been hitting up some trails and going on group rides at least once a week. Including: Steel City Roll (first Mon of each month – next ride 07.04.16), 412 Flock (third Fri of each month – next ride 07.15.16), PGH undies ride (last Thur of each month – just went on one last night 06.30.16, next ride 07.28.16) and random rides with friends around Pittsburgh, the #LunchLoop (new) with HealthyRidePGH and BikePGH (06.17.16, 07.14.16, and 08.23.16) as well as OpenStreetsPGH (last Sun of May, June, July – new route this month) again with with HealthyRidePGH and BikePGH. For those in the Pittsburgh area feel free to come out and join me for these monthly group rides!
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Frigid Bitch 2016

Way over due but here it is, deets on the Third Annual Frigid Bitch! Pittsburgh’s own alley cat bike race put together via our very own Pittsburgh Babes on Bikes leader, Anna Lena! This was my second time completing this race and it was colder and more frigid than last years with wind speeds of up to 25mph and roads covered in snow and ice.

 photo 6snowy bikes start_zpss6h7bk7p.jpg

This year was the real deal! We had 41 riders showed up this year. As per usual we rolled up at the House of Ragging Women; grabbed our cards, maps and manifestos and began plotting routes for completing the most checkpoints in the shortest amount of time.

spokecard and map

manifesto

Just before the 2pm start mark we gathered up to listen to the rules:

  • 6 regular checkpoints,
  • 2 unmanned bonus checkpoints,
  • and 1 secret checkpoint only known by the Ricketts Boys @ the double intersections of Stanton and McCandles

Regular checkpoints were opened til 4; racers had til 5pm to get back to the HoRW. Winners were determined by who hit up the most checkpoints and got back the fastest. Even if riding with teams, on the last stretch back it was every woman for themselves! After that we toss on our gear and rolled out to the start line at Bruce St.

On the mark, the whistle was blown and we were off! At the end of the street we start to see groups splitting off, some turning right and continuing down to Butler St. while others split left after that right turn.

Rundown of the Checkpoints:

FB 2016 map

Screenshot 2016-06-19 18.52.42

FB elevation chart w grades

First checkpoint up for my group: we rode up to Penn Ave., crossed it then rode down to Liberty Ave. connecting to S Aiken then to the bottom of Negley at Fifth Ave. After which we had to climb Negley to finish this first checkpoint, no one was happy about this climb! I ended up having to delayer some at this point – I was really prepared this year!

Next stop for us was one of the bonus spots: The Rubble of the Greenfield Bridge at the end of Pocusset. On the way there I totally hit some ice and slid a couple feet, luckily I was padded with clothing and my pannier caught most of the fall but I did have to reset my seat and my light holder busted. Missing the pic with me in it but here’s part of my group. Quick whiskey and vodka break 😛 then we headed out to the next point.

Next up: Joncaire @ Boundary St. where we had to start from the bottom then ride uphill on cobblestone to Iron City Bikes in Oakland in order to complete the checkpoint. I rode up about half the way before I had to pop off and walk the rest the way up.

 photo group_zps9m83ry3d.jpg

Next stop: The Dead End of Romeo in South Oakland. It took our group a min to find this as we rode past the turning street and had to circle back.

Quick pause for some water, booze, and faux dogs on da grill after that we had to carry our bikes down the long staircase to Bates St. Here our group merged with some others and crossed paths with another going the opposite direction.

 photo bikepgh_zpsws2kvodt.jpg

 photo intersection wide_zpsbyn2e0dd.jpg

 photo alyssa_zpsuj1aoqmf.jpg

We then rode down Bates and popped over to the trail to downtown onto Grant St. It’s on the trail to town that I start to fall a bit behind, my smaller tires were not quite able to push through the fresh snow as fast as the others and by the time I got to the corner of Grant where the GLCC is located I lost sight of my group and noticed time was dwindling down. With only maybe 20-30 minutes left to either get over to the N Shore and N Side and get 1 or 2 more checkpoints but risk being late or head back with less checkpoints but on time, I made the decision to head back. I turned down Penn and rode back to the HoRW.

Check points I didn’t get to:

The Abandoned Barge on the North Shore Trail (marked with pink XXXs)

The Intersections of Stanton and McCandless – where the location of the secret checkpoint was revealed at which turned out to be Espresso A Mano on Butler St.

Commonplace Coffee at Buena Vista and Jacksonia over in the N Side

The other unmanned bonus checkpoint The Submarine at the Carnegie Science Center off the 3RHT

I was very glad that I decided to head back, I ended up being one of the first few back even though I didn’t hit up as many checkpoints as I would have liked (last year was against a smaller group and with less checkpoints so I was able to hit them all up and make it back in time). I still had a blast and met a lot of cool new friends. This year was also great because I lived closer to the start line and so when I got back I was able to head home, shower and put on clean, dry, warm clothes then head back over for the winner announcements, prizes and after party (so I def won there).

The Swag:

  • multiple Chrome bags
  • multiple tool rolls
  • a certificate for a pair of DZR shoes
  • a Surly women’s wool jersey
  • Analog Forest’s Sparkle Pony jersey
  • jerseys and shorts/bibs from Bicycle Times, Dirt Rag, Aerotech
  • a 10 pack of spin classes from Steel Revolution
  • wind jackets
  • road shoes
  • a giant pile of comic books from Phantom of the Attic
  • lots of other goodies: locks, lights, computers, saddles, pumps, tires etc. from The Appalacian Bicycle Racing Association
  • lots of saddle bag and bells
  • a slew of handmade bikey candles from North Ave Candle company
  • Garbella garments and handmade pins
  • passes to the Wheel Mill
  • a pile of socks
  • a BikePGH membership in a bottle
  • $300 in gift certificates to Free Ride
  • winter gear
  • bike magazine subscriptions
  • many flasks
  • tons of toe clips and a helmet from Iron City Bikes
  • La Prima Espresso coffee
  • random fun stuff from the Mattress Factory
  • approx. a billion T Shirts and water bottles

Needless to say, regardless of where you placed, everyone went home with some swag!

My Swag:

Winners of this year’s Frigid Bitch:

Veteran Bitches:

This year was an absolute blast and I was so thrilled to see so many ladies that came out to race. Mad thanks to the volunteers who came out to support us with love, hand warmers, food and booze!

Additional footage:

Spring Break Check-In

Fall semester has come and gone; winter break has come and gone, and now I’m heading into the 10th week of my spring semester a.k.a. spring break! Spring semester is once again my most busy and full schedule and this semester is particularly so. On top of taking 20 credits I’ve started my thesis project, interning and am working 2-4 jobs. Plus it has not been too inviting outside with bone cutting wind chills and inconsistent weather changes.

I ended the fall semester/ 2015 with multiple PR race times and a good amount of lifting PRs, along with these measurements:

  • Neck: 13″
  • Shoulders: 40″
  • Chest: 35″
  • Biceps: 10.5″
  • Waist: 35″
  • Hips: 37″
  • Thigh: 21″
  • Calf: 14.5″

Weight: 141# BF: 27%

January measurements:

  • Neck: 13.5″
  • Shoulders: 42.5″
  • Chest: 37.5″
  • Biceps: 11″
  • Waist: 33″
  • Hips: 39″
  • Thigh: 22.5″
  • Calf: 14.5″

Weight: 149# BF: 24%

We got a new toy in the exercise science dept. it’s called Skulpt and it is a more accurate measurement tool for body fat and muscle quality. I had the chance to try it out and measured my RT biceps, triceps, abdominals and quadriceps muscles.

I got some interesting results: my upper arms, which are really sculpted/toned showed that my biceps were 101 MQ (average) & 26.4 Fat % (needs work) and my triceps were 111 MG (average) & 28.2 Fat % (average) while my abs, which are somewhat toned though not much compared to other muscles were 124 MQ (fit) and 21.4 Fat % (athletic) and my quads were 121 MQ (fit) and 20.5 Fat % (athletic), which was not really all that surprising to me. It measures more muscles than just the above, which would also produce a better total body composition but this is a fairly accurate/ genuine reading thus far.

I’d like to remeasure and get a full body scan once I’m back up to my fitness level from that of end of fall semester.

This semester I switched my workout focus to more muscular endurance based rather than strength alone; including more super sets and working with about 60% of my 1-RMs (instead of 80-90% as before). I started out strong this year with only 4 workouts missed in January; hitting the gym 21 times, which is 12 more workouts than last Jan.

Workout Plan for Jan:

Weeks 1-4

Day 1 – warm up 10 min
1 Front barbell squat 6:25,20,20,15,15,10 and Mt. climbers 5:30sec ea
2 Leg press 6:20,12,12,8,8,4 and Single-arm kb swing 5:10 ea
3 Stiffed leg DB dead-lift 6:25,25,15,15,8,8
4 Arnold press 4:15,10,6,6 and pop squat 4:15
5 Neutral grip single-arm DB press 3:12,8,6 and DB squat jump 3:15
6 Single-arm upright row 3:15,12,8 and MB slam    3:15
7 Seated calf raise 3:08 and Standing calf raise 3:12
8  Cardio 47 min total =40 min steady state, 5 min HIIT

Day 2 – warm up 10 min
1 Wide-grip lat pull down 5:16,12,10,8,4
2 Rope straight-arm pull down 4:16,12,8,6 and DB squat jump 3:15
3 Seated cable row 4:16,12,8,6
4 Alternating incline DB curl 4:12,8,6,4 and Mt. climbers 4:15
5  Ez-bar reverse curl 4:12,8,6,6
6  Standing palms-up barbell behind back wrist curl 3:15 and lunge jump    3:15
7 Cardio 47 min

Day 3 – warm up 10 min
1 Single-leg cable kickback 6:25,25,15,15,10,10 ea + 10 partials
2 One-legged cable kick-back 4:10
3  Smith sumo squat 5:25,20,15,15,10 and Quick step-up 5:40
4  Thigh abductor 5:25,15,15,10,10 with 10 partials to finish ea set
5  Plank 3:1 min ea
6 Cardio 47 min

Day 4    Rest Day

Day 5 – warm up 10 min
1 Hack squat 7:25,16,16,10,10,6,6 and Mt. climbers     7: 30 sec ea
2 Dead-lift 5:12,12,8,8,4 and MB slam 5:15
3 Single-leg extension 6:15,15,10,10,8,8 ea and Leg extension 6:15,15,10,10,6,6
4 Lying leg curl 4:15,10,6,6 and Squat 4:15
5 Side lateral raise 4:15,10,6,6 and DB squat jump 3:15
6 Front DB raise 3:15,12,8 and Bench step-up 1 min
7 Rear delt cable raise 3:12,8,6
8 Seated calf raise 3:08
9 Standing calf raise 3:12
10 Cardio 47 min

Day 6 – warm up 10 min
1 Incline DB press 4:15,12,8,8
2 Decline bench press 4:15,12,8,8 and Mt. climbers 4:30 sec ea
3 DB fly 4:15,12,8,8 and lunge jump 3:15 ea
4 Cable single-arm triceps extension 4:12,8,6,4 and Cable single-arm triceps push-up 4:12,8,6,4 and Squat 4:15
5 Skull-crusher 4:12,8,6,6 and Close-grip barbell bench press 4:12,8,6,6 and Side bench step-up 3:15 ea
6 Cardio 47 min

Day 7 – warm up 10 min
1 Barbell step-up 6:20,15,15,15,15,10,10 ea
2 Smith hip thrust 8:25,20,15,15,10,10,5,5 and Quick step-up    8:40
3  Cable hip abduction 6:25,25,15,15,10,10 ea and Lying leg curl kick-back 4:15 ea
4  Cable crunch 3:15
5  Pull-up leg raise 3:05
6 Cardio 47 min

15 SEC B/W SETS Stretching 11.5 min

February 1-RMs:

Barbells:

  • Bench Press: 100#
  • Bent Over Rows: 95#
  • Dead lift: 185#
  • Squat: 125# (new PR)

Dumbbells:

  • Arm Curls: 30#
  • Arm Extension: 40#
  • Shoulder Press: 30#
  • Shoulder Shrug: 60#
  • Lateral/Frontal Shoulder Raise: 15#

Stacked Machines:

  • Leg Press: 315# (222.705# at a 40° angle)
  • Calf Press: 495# (349.964# at a 40° angle)
  • Leg Extension: 140#
  • Seated Leg Curls: 135#
  • Hip Abduction: 245#
  • Hip Adduction: 245#
  • Chest Press: 100#
  • Lateral Pull Down: 96.6#
  • Seated Rows: 110#

Not too bad for not feeling as active this semester as I was last semester. This month tends to be the toughest for me, it’s the coldest and most miserable outside plus my depression flares up more often because of the season. I missed 10 workouts this month, which turned out to not be as many as I thought I had missed and I managed to maintain a decent amount of muscular strength and PR in my Squats. Also I hit the gym 11 times this month, which is 5 more workouts than last Feb.

Workout Plan for Feb:

I went to bodybuilders.com for this one … 4 weeks 2 shred challenge (28 days, which is perfect for this month even if it is a leap year)

Week 1 -4 (the exercises change but the focus groups are the same for each day)

  • Day 1: AM Back and Biceps PM Calves, Abs & Cardio
  • Day 2: AM Shoulders & Triceps PM Cardio
  • Day 3: Active Rest (Cardio and Abs)
  • Day 4: AM Legs PM Cardio
  • Day 5: AM Chest & Calves PM Cardio & Abs
  • Day 6: Active Rest(Cardio and Abs)
  • Day 7: Active Rest (Cardio and Abs)

I also raced in the 3rd Annual Frigid Bitch Alley cat Bike Race.

Game plan for March

Tuesdays and Thursdays will focus more on Cardio based exercises – biking and perhaps swimming. Increase the weight by 5-10# each week.

Monday
Barbell Full Squat 5 sets of 5 reps
Barbell Bench Press – Medium Grip 5 sets of 5 reps
Bent Over Barbell Row 5 sets of 5 reps
Accessory Exercises
Sit-Up 5 sets of 5 reps
Cable Lying Triceps Extension 5 sets of 5 reps

Wednesday
Front Barbell Squat 5 sets of 5 reps
Standing Military Press 5 sets of 5 reps
Barbell Dead-lift 2-3 sets of 5-8 reps
Pull-ups 2-3 sets of 5-8 reps
Accessory Exercises
Barbell Curl 2-3 sets of 5-8 reps
Crunches 2-3 sets of 5-8 reps

Friday
Barbell Full Squat 5 sets of 5 reps
Barbell Bench Press – Medium Grip 5 sets of 5 reps
Bent Over Barbell Row 5 sets of 5 reps
Accessory Exercises
Bench Dips 2-3 sets of 5-8 reps
Ab Crunch Machine 2-3 sets of 5-8 reps

Spring break fitness plans are to get outside more, as the weather is forecasted to be in the 60s and 70s, I plan to do more biking & running plus a day trip for hiking while getting all the work done. As the weather fairs up overall I will begin commuting on my bike again increasing my activity levels once more.

Keeping the momentum going

Exercise recap from 2015 flowing right into 2016 and keeping it going.

January:

  • Training Runs and Races: 11.5 miles
  • Commuting, Training, Touring & Recreational Bike Rides: 15.7 miles
  • Gym: 9x
  • Kayaking

February:

  • Commuting, Training, Touring & Recreational Bike Rides: 34.2 miles
  • Gym: 6x
  • Kayaking

March:

  • Training Runs and Races: 27.38 miles
  • Commuting, Training, Touring & Recreational Bike Rides: 74.3 miles
  • Gym: 8x

April:

  • Training Runs and Races: 5.1 miles
  • Commuting, Training, Touring & Recreational Bike Rides: 46.4 miles

May:

  • Training Runs and Races: 20.54 miles
  • Commuting, Training, Touring & Recreational Bike Rides: 76.5 miles
  • Gym: 3x

June:

  • Training Runs and Races: 77.11 miles
  • Commuting, Training, Touring & Recreational Bike Rides: 438.2 miles
  • Hiking: 8 miles
  • Gym: 3x

July:

  • Training Runs and Races: 97.08 miles
  • Commuting, Training, Touring & Recreational Bike Rides: 1,149.2 miles
  • Gym: 3x

August:

  • Training Runs and Races: 117.02 miles
  • Commuting, Training, Touring & Recreational Bike Rides: 907.2 miles
  • Gym: 3x

September:

  • Training Runs and Races: 22.6 miles
  • Commuting, Training, Touring & Recreational Bike Rides: 359.5 miles
  • Gym: 25x

October:

  • Training Runs and Races: 25.54 miles
  • Commuting, Training, Touring & Recreational Bike Rides: 428.9 miles
  • Gym: 24x

November:

  • Training Runs and Races: 23.14 miles
  • Commuting, Training, Touring & Recreational Bike Rides: 254 miles
  • Gym: 20x

December:

  • Training Runs and Races: 67.38 miles
  • Commuting, Training, Touring & Recreational Bike Rides: 133.6 miles
  • Gym: 10x

 Goals for 2016:

  • continue to PR at each milestone distances
  • PR in weight lifting (bench, squat and dead lift)
  • summer bike tour
  • officially complete pgh triathlon
  • officially complete the dirty dozen

2015 National Bike Challenge

I wrote about this year’s national bike challenge in one of my fitness updates but here is a recap of this year (12 months) in biking mileage.

Jan bike milesFeb bike milesMarch bike mlesApril bike miles

Official challenge begins:

May bike milesJune bike milesJuly bike milesAug bike miles

Official challenge ends: Sept bike milesOct bike milesNov bike milesDec bike miles

I biked nearly 4,000 miles this year totaling at 3,917.7 miles

These miles are totaled from commuting to and from work, school, errands… from training in the gym and touring around Pittsburgh and the surrounding areas

End of Summer Fitness Check In

Summer is coming to a close with classes are starting this week. With that in mind, I did a fitness assessment to see where I’m at after these past few months. This summer has been quite the journey for me – emotionally, mentally and psychologically – dealing with some unfortunate personal stuff. Depression and anxiety are no joking matter and are conditions that deserve attention and mention. I was able to get outside some days for a little running and biking; I made it to the gym: swimming and lifting maybe once or twice each month. It’s been a real up hill battle these past few months and I am glad to have the semester start up again, I look forward to working on my fitness goals with a more regiment/ scheduled approach.

End of summer 1-RMs:

Barbells:

  • Bench Press: 65#
  • Bent Over Rows: 75#
  • Deadlift: 100#
  • Squat: 95#

Dumbbells:

  • Arm Curls: 20#
  • Arm Extension: 30#
  • Shoulder Shrug: 45#

Stacked Machines:

  • Leg Press: 250# (176.75)
  • Calf Press: 250#
  • Leg Extension: 140#
  • Seated Leg Curls: 140#
  • Hip Abduction: 215#
  • Hip Adduction: 215#
  • Chest Press: 110#
  • Overhead Press: 85#
  • Lateral Pull Down: 96.6#
  • Seated Rows: 95#

Plank: 1 min (down 1 min) Push ups to max: 25 (down 8 but better form) Modified push ups: 70 in 1min Sit ups: 90 in 1 min (down 15) Sit ups to max: 130 Pull ups: 0 Wall Sit: 3:01 min (didn’t do this for the last check in)

New Measurements: (overall lose of 5″ total)

  • Neck: 13″
  • Shoulders: 41″
  • Chest: 38″
  • Biceps: 10″
  • Waist: 34″
  • Hips: 38″
  • Thigh: 22″
  • Calf: 14″

Height: 5′ 4″ = 64″ (don’t expect this to change but used for purposes of BMI calculations) Weight: 137.6# BMI: 23.5 Body Fat %: didn’t have an accurate way to measure this time but based on the math it’s roughly the same as last check in

Fitness Motivation! KEEP GOING!! Doing this for me... Check out the website to see how I lost 20 pounds last month

My results are not what I could have liked but they’re not terrible. I’ve managed to maintain some strength, predominately in my lower body muscles while only loosing slight muscular strength in my upper body/ core muscles. The overall weight loss is a little concerning since I know it’s not all fat loss, meaning despite being down 11.9#, some of that is from muscle mass loss. I have no doubt that once I settle into my routine of classes and workouts that I’ll be up to my normal standards and gaining within a month or two.

running motivational quotes | Gone For a RUN Blog 15 Extremely Motivating Quotes To Help Get You ...

I did mention getting out some for a bit of running and biking plus I was able to get some pool time in. However instead of working on pace time or even distance really, I focused on just getting out there and doing something. This summer I’ve been mixing it up with my runs and having fun with them. More about that (with pics) can be found on my Tumblr. I did run in the Stride for Pride 5K in June.

Fall Line: Sept 6 – the Gatorade/Steelers annual 5K, Sept 19 – the Color Run Shine (5K), Sept 27 – Great Race (10K), Oct 25 – the EQT Pgh 10 Miler, Nov 7 – Zoo 5K now I just need something for Dec and I will have actually done something (race/event) every month this year.

No destination bike trip this summer 😦 which was a bummer but I did log a lot of urban bike trail miles. Beginning July 20th – Aug 7th some friends of mine bike toured around Seattle and according to the captain they were planning on riding ~50 miles a day, totaling somewhere ~1,000 miles by end of trip. Trails I used: GAP Trail, Three Rivers Heritage Trail, and North Shore Trail – Chateau Trail plus a good amount of road time (biked around the East End – Lawrenceville, Bloomfield, Shadyside, East Liberty, Highland Park, Garfield; Squirrel Hill; the Strip District; Downtown; the North Shore and North Side; Milvale; Oakland; South Side).

  • July 20: 58.5 miles (Time: 4:57)
  • July 21: 40 miles (Time: 3:30)
  • July 22: 48 miles (Time: 28:12 and 2:55)
  • July 23: 56 miles (Time: 5:30)
  • July 24: 50.2 miles (Time: 2:04:32 and 3:15)
  • July 25: 45.5 miles (Time: 4:23)
  • July 26: 50 miles (Time: 4:30)
  • July 27: off – was at a wedding
  • July 28: 51.6 miles (Time: 4:36)
  • July 29: 60.3 miles (Time: 5:05)
  • July 30: 50.4 miles (Time: 4:30)
  • July 31: 47.4 miles (Time: 3:33)
  • Aug 1: 50.7 miles (Time: 4:58)
  • Aug 2: 60.2 miles (Time: 5:14)
  • Aug 3: 47.8 miles (Time: 4:55)
  • Aug 4: 57.2 miles (Time: 5:05)
  • Aug 5: 65 miles (Time: 6:02)
  • Aug 6: 50.3 miles (Time: 5:00)
  • Aug 7: 83.42 miles – this was my longest ride thus far this summer – broke it up into bike sized chunks though (Time: 3:09 and 2:55 and 3:06)

The weekend of Aug 7-9 was Pittsburgh’s triathlon – while I didn’t officially compete in the race I did complete the events/ distances using my school’s pool and facilities. My results: swim 600 meters (~0.25 mile) 30min, bike 20K (~12.5 miles) 45min, run 5K (3.1 miles) 30min. Total elapsed time: just over 2 hours. Total moving time: 1 hr 45min

By the end of the scheduled time for their bike trip I had clocked in 972.52 miles, actually 985.02 miles including the bike miles from the triathlon (Time: 90 hrs 25 min).

  • Aug 11: 37.5 miles (Time 3:30)
  • Aug 12: 35 miles (Time: 3:24)
  • Aug 14: 27 miles (Time 2:15) this brings my new total to 1,084.52 miles (Time: 99 hrs 34 min)

I’ll keep up the biking (I’m participating in the National Bike Challenge which has been going on since May 1 & ends Sept 30 – more on that when it’s over) but my ave daily mileage will decrease as school begins and I’ll be logging more transportation/commuter miles.

Update: Aug 16: 25 miles (Time: 2:25), Aug 17: 27.5 miles (Time: 2:45); new total = 1,137.02 miles (Time: 104 hrs 44 min) clocked before my first class of the semester (starting from July 20th). I think my math is correct for the total time, a lot of adding and converting was involved. BikeFest is also coming up here in a couple days so I’ll get some more recreational rides logged.

Here’s to a fresh start!

Maybe we should call ourselves the febreze brothers because things are feeling so fresh right now.

Quarter, Half and Metric Centuries complete – √ homework for 50K – √

Woke up before dawn, ugh so gross but I did it. Turns out I didn’t need as much as I thought I did, for instance I ended up not changing at all because it stayed nice and cool out the whole time (60-70s °F). I also didn’t really need as much food or extra water but was glad to have it just in case. Better to have and not need then to need and not have.

breakfast of champions 😀 Wheaties and a protein shake

The ride from my house was a little bit longer then originally thought, adding over a mile to my total distance completed.

good morning Pittsburgh!

what’s this?! morning traffic… a gaggle of geese lol

When I got to my ‘start line’ I had already biked 4.5 miles.

let’s do this!

The first loop was pretty great. The only noticeable physical ‘soreness’ at this point were my hands/ wrists from the bumpy trail – normal – nothing a little stretching and shaking out couldn’t handle. I was also able to bike out ~15 miles instead of the initial 3 I originally thought I was limited to, which was a great surprise.

a little after mile 3

Getting into some mud!

new trail! about mile 6

Farther out I went on this part of the trail the more muddy, rocky it got.

about mile 10-11

I traveled out another few miles before making a U-Turn back.

feeling good about mile 18

pit stop

I hit the 25 mile goal in under 2 hours (3 = time limit for the quarter century). Based on the time of day I had been pacing at ~13 MPH. Luckily the trail out this way was predominately flat with very subtle hills if at all and not much traffic apart from the occasional runner or fellow biker and the gaggles of geese making it great conditions for speed.

about mile 25-26! #quartercenturyride 1 down 2 left

fountain – if need be can use to cool down but it’s been a pretty cool day thus far

Break time!

Felt really good at this point so I only took a 10-15 min break and decided just to eat, drink and take some pics but not change clothes.

just under 2:30 right now

mile 30! half way there

saw some early rowers out

some duckies wanted to join me on my break 😀

Break time over! Back on the trail, heading in the other direction. At the start of my break I had been biking for a little more then 2.5 hours.

Made great timing on the other end of the trail since it was shorter; I could only bike out a little over 3 miles before having to turn around and head back. This part of the trail was mostly cement and finely crushed gravel or compact dirt so I was able to pick up speed to ~15 MPH (really pressing hard here). This loop took me ~24 min to bike, which brought me to ~3 hrs by mile 36-37. It was at this point that it started drizzling.

more geese!

Around mile 50 and beyond was about where I started to feel soreness in my neck and quads plus more of the same in my hands/wrist. Overall still felt good enough to press on after some stretching and shaking out the upper limbs. I slowed up some the closer to 50 miles I got but maintained some of that momentum from earlier. At this point I had been riding for roughly 4 hours and still had another dozen miles left to complete my goal plus another 4.5 to get home. I’m inside the home stretch. Since I did 50 miles in less then the allotted 6 hour time frame, it totally counts.

about mile 50! #halfcenturyride feeling the sweat, 2 down 1 left

uh oh a family of geese better go left

victory bike pic

I freaking did it!!! The remaining 12 miles were pretty intense but I finished the trail ride of ~62 miles in just under 5 hours and I finished strong. I was so glad to head home for a much needed shower. Again since it stayed pretty cool out and had only rain a little I saw no need to change before heading home. Less laundry yay!

finished! victory pic. 62 miles/ 100 km later #metriccenturyride final goal completed 3 for 3

The ride home was actually not that bad, all flat until I reached the end of my street. I don’t have a cool GPS watch for biking to record my mileage and pace etc. so there was some guess work here based on the time of day with the mileage based on landmarks I had checked out and mapping my route. I recently order such a watch for running so when I do my 50K run I’ll have that to keep an accurate record. I manually log the miles in mapmyrun, below are my stats for the entire ride including the travel to and from the trail.

Screenshot 2015-06-19 14.28.40Roughly 29 more miles to go for the century ride that is apart from the times I did so on week long bike tour. I have actually completed all the ride categories but I want to do so not just as a trip.

done! although not the katy trail – only appropriate pic I could find

For my ultra I’ll prob run the trail heading eastward, out & back then another mile westward for 31 miles. It would be better/ smarter to do this with a crew but it is doable solo. I’d need to set up a ‘base camp’ at the starting line & have some drop off/ fuel stations strategically placed along my route. My camel pack was full with water & food for the ride but for the run I’d only carry essentials for maybe the first 10-15 miles.

Trails involved during ride: The GAP Trail (150 mile rail trail -> 335 mile long trail experience), the Three Rivers Heritage Trail (25 miles long), and the North Shore Trail (6 miles long) – Chateau Trail (most westward trail)