Monday, November 7, 2011

Random updates

Coming up is a bit of randomness that has occurred since the last time I posted. First off, I saw a surgeon almost 2 weeks ago regarding my knee. I'be been pretty much pain free for awhile now, and was thinking that I wouldn't need surgery. Well, the meeting with the surgeon confirmed this, and I have the green light to keep on biking as much as I can and avoid going under the knife for now.

I've been getting out for as much riding as I can lately. Since I missed a good chunk of the summer, I'm not burnt out on riding and pretty excited to get out whenever I can. I got out for a loop of the park 2 weeks ago with my buddy Karl, who was rocking a vintage bike and some cool retro Look shoes. We thought that we could do a full loop, including the north loop, which has been closed all summer. We saw other cyclists coming from the other direction, and figured it was rideable. However, we ended up doing too much hike a biking for my liking (especially in road shoes) and decided that the north loop would not be worth it in the future. It ended up being close to 3 hours of riding for me, and I felt great. No knee pain, and endurance was fine.

A shot of the Jock river along one of my usual loops.

Karl's vintage Bianchi.

The view from Champlain lookout.

Nice retro kicks.

On a beer tip, I'm constantly trying new beers, but I've been lazy when it comes to taking pics of them and taking notes. Here are a couple I've tried recently:

An Ontario beer out of Bramptom. This is a tasty, easy drinking lager. Mellow hop flavour...not as hoppy as the can would suggest, though.

Beau's "Dunkel Buck", a strong (6.8%) dark wheat beer. This was a limited run from Beau's. This had a nice fruity, chocolatey aroma, with a sweet chocolate flavour that wasn't too intense. Hopefully they produce this one again, but with any of their wild oats beers (limited run), once they're gone, they're gone.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

New Ottawa Brewery...Broadhead

This is essentially a link to the Great Canadian Beer Blog, but a new brewery has opened up in Ottawa, Broadhead Brewing. It's on the way to my sister's place in Barrhaven, so I think I'll be dropping by when they get their growlers in. Can't wait!

Monday, October 24, 2011

New cross bike

Yeah, yeah, it's been "awhile" since I've posted anything. I'm not gonna make any excuses or bore you with non biking details of my life. But, on the biking tip, I got out this past Saturday for a ride on my new cross bike. It's an Opus Stelle that I picked up waaaaaaaaay back in June, just before my injury. So for 3 months, I've had a brand new bike hanging up in the basement, just begging to be ridden. Saturday, I mounted some 28c slicks and then mounted the bike for a quick ride. I was hoping that this bike would reduce road chatter compared to my previous cross bike due to the addition of carbon seatstays. Overall, the ride quality isn't as smooth as say, my road bike, and marginally better than my previous full aluminum cross bike. The other key selling point(s) for me was the parts spec. If I find myself not completely happy with the frame, I can see myself sometime in the future upgrading to a different frame and fork, and keeping all of the components. Upgrades compared to my previous cross bike are:

NEW BIKE                                      OLD BIKE
Aluminum with carbon seatstays     Full aluminum frame
Ultegra Drivetrain                          105 drivetrain
FSA Team Issue Carbon Crank         FSA Gossamer alloy crank
Mavic Ksyrium Equipe wheels          Mavic Aksium wheels
TRP Euro-x brakes                         Tektro brakes
Vittoria Cross XG folding tires         Vittoria Cross XG wire bead tires
Selle Italia SL saddle                       Selle Italia ????? saddle

Opus Spark, good while I had it.

Opus Stelle. Pretty sweet upgrades. Got rid of the pizza platter behind the cassette. Not sure how much this bike weighs, but using the good ol' lift it up and bounce it in my hands technique, it's a hell of a lot lighter than the Spark

My first ever carbon crank....pimp!

White wheelset, also pimp!

Monday, September 5, 2011

2012 Trekworld

I've been meaning to get these pictures up for awhile now...they're pics that Sonia took when she went to Madison, Wisconsin, for "Trekworld", a dealer show for, you guessed it, Trek bikes. There was a pretty cool surprise when she arrived at the show...just a few pros from the Leopard-Trek team!! Enjoy.

 Jens Voigt and Fabian Cancellera, signing posters.

 Cancellera's bike.

 Sonia, looking like she's gonna take off with Cancellera's bike.

One day I'll be pro enough to get my own personalized tires....yeah right!

 Sonia, pretty excited to be getting an Andy Schleck autographed poster.

 Sonia's co-worker Dave...containing his excitement.

 Andy's bike.

 Frank's bike. Not sure who the foot belongs to, though.

 These are the actual bikes used in the Tour de France, complete with scuff marks on the crank.

Sonia and Gary Fisher.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

2012 Cannondale

Blogging has been sporadic as of late...I just haven't been biking much, and since this is a blog about biking (and yes, beer), there's not much to write about. Now that my knee is better (pain free and full range of motion, but not full strength yet), I can now start catching up on projects around the house (painting, re-doing some floors, exterior work, etc, etc..). Sooooo, I have to live vicariously through others, but it seems that a lot of my fellow bloggers have also reduced their blogging activity. That leaves me to get excited about biking through my wife.

Working in a bike shop, she has the perk of viewing next year's bikes before the general public. 4 weeks ago, she was flown down to Utah to view next year's Cannondale bikes, leaving Lil' D and myself to fend for ourselves. It all went down at Deer Valley resort, outside of Park City (about an hour from Salt Lake City).

Mountains surrounding Salt Lake City Airport.

 Deer Valley Resort.
These retailer shows consist of presentations, seminars and of course, bike demos. Sonia signed up for two demos, both of them on mountain bikes. The only road demos were for Cannondale Super Six's, and she didn't feel like trying to keep up full on Type A roadies.

Day 1 demo she tried a Jekyll, their"over-mountain" bike, featuring 150mm travel front and rear. One of the cool things with this bike is the ability to switch between fully open rear travel and a semi open mode of 90mm travel. As soon as she started riding there was only one way to go...up. With the bike in 90mm, it climbed amazingly well. Coming back down the hill, she kept the bike in 90mm mode and found it to be surprisingly nimble.

2012 Jekylls.

Scalpel 100 29er. 

Day 2, she got to try the eye candy bike of next year's lineup (and a new bike), the scalpel 100 29er. Full carbon frame, 100mm of travel and a spec that would leave anyone drooling. For this ride, she decided to take the chairlift up the hill (cheater!) and boot on down on some nice, twisty, turny singletrack. Being a 26 mtb rider, her impression of the scalpel was much like anyone else trying a 29er for the first time...rolls over obstacles no problem, is fast rolling, but is slow to accelerate. When she did encounter any rough terrain, she noted that the suspension handled like her 120mm 26" bike. For herself, Sonia thinks she would stick to a 26er due to the stop and go nature of trails like Outback or some of the technical trails at Camp Fortune.

View from the top of the resort.

View of Salt Lake and salt flats.

The ultimate bike light????? The first red flag is that you're ordering this out of a catalog on an airplane!

Sonia did pick up for me some all important hardware.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

In the mail

Getting stuff in the mail rocks.  A little over a week ago, I got some goodies in my mailbox.

Wouter Weylendt tribute t-shirt from Stomach of Anger.

Issue #5 of Peloton mag. This issue has a French theme to coincide with the tour...I got it 2 days before the Tour ended, but it's still a stellar issue.

Friday, July 22, 2011

The verdict is in

Saw the sports med doc yesterday for my MRI results, and it turns out that I have a torn medial meniscus. The solution there is of course, surgery. A scope to go in and "clean it up", so to speak.

My tear is on the medial meniscus, the side identified by the "bucket tear" above.

The doc also told me that some of the cartilage on my femur where it articulates with the patella, is compromised. They won't know to what degree it's compromised until the surgery. Worst case scenario, there's a "pothole" where there should be cartilage, and a procedure called a micro-fracture would be performed.

After a look at this pic, I hope I don't have to undergo a microfracture...pretty archaic looking.

So there ya have it. I have to get back in shape, though...I've lost a lot of muscle mass in my left leg over the last month. The good news is is that I've been on the trainer, and hope to get out for a ride this weekend. I have the green light to bike, but running is questionable until I've regained 90% of strength in my left leg compared to the right. So that probably means no cross this year. Besides, I don't want to re-aggravate my knee. The other bad news is I won't get to use my new cross bike. HUH??? New bike, you ask???? Stay tuned.....