Friday, June 4, 2010

Spring Hill Ride - June 3, 2010

I rode out to Spring Hill in the afternoon thinking that I would get a ride in to include attendance at the meeting on the Lone Elm Road and K10 Interchange so that I could make my voice heard on providing good bike and pedestrian access.  I received notice from the Johnson County Bicycle Club and wanted to support this advocacy effort.

I headed south then was going to go north to Lenexa for the meeting but unfortunately had my 4th flat tire of the season.  Like the others it was in the back tire but this time it was in a brand new tire and tube which I was not too happy about.  It was a staple that I must have hit just right as it punctured right through the tire into the tube.  Since I have had so many flats I am getting good at changing them (not a skill I like to have really) and was up and running again in just under 20 minutes which included having to move for a farmer who was pulling in a big tractor onto a field in the clearing I was in off of 207th Street.  He and a couple of other cars were stopped to see if I was okay or if I needed anything which is always nice especially when you are riding alone.

So after I knew I would probably not make the meeting in time I headed west through Spring Hill and then north on Clare Road.  It was a great day to be out as it was sunny with temperatures in the mid 80's with very little wind so I kept a good pace no matter what direction.

My big news is that I finally invested in a Garmin Edge 500 (see picture above) as I had been using my Garmin Forerunner 405 which I am going to keep since I like it for Nordic Skiing, Nordic Walking, and Hiking.  The Garmin Edge 500 is quite nice and easily mounts with straps to your handlebars.  I like a lot of data and with this unit you can setup three screens with up to eight items per page and then rotate them while riding if you want.  Definitely a geek paradise but probably a bit more than you need just to ride and we don't need distracted cyclists on the road along with distracted drivers!

The funny thing that when setting it up I had changed around the fields a few times and then when riding I did not have distance as one of the fields, which of course is one of the main items you need.  I fixed that with the stop for the flat.  There are 45 fields to choose from but the ones I like are in blue on the list below.  I repeat Time of Day and Time as the top two fields on each screen.  For Cadence, Heart Rate, and Power you need optional equipment.  I already had the Cadence and Heart Rate monitors from the Garmin Forerunner 405 but the Power monitor I will have to look into.

I purchased the unit on eBay as I was able to obtain it well under list price with no shipping or taxes added.  Since the Garmin International Headquarters is right here in Olathe, Kansas I thought it quite amusing that the unit was shipped from Brisbane, Australia and I received it in 4 days!

Data Fields for the Garmin Edge 500:

Cadence – Avg.
Cadence – Lap
Dist – Lap
GPS Accuracy
Heart Rate
HR – %Max.
HR – Avg.
HR – Avg. %HRR
HR – Avg. %Max.
HR – Lap
HR – Lap %HRR
HR – Lap %Max.
HR Graph
HR Zone
Power - %FTP
Power - 30s Avg.Power - 3s Avg.
Power – Avg.
Power – kJ
Power – Lap
Power – Max.
Power Zone
Speed – Avg.
Speed – Lap
Speed – Max.
Time – Avg. Lap
Time - Elapsed
Time – Lap
Time of Day
Total Ascent
Total Descent
Vertical Speed
VS – 30s Avg.

Another purchase I made recently was for the new Camelbak Podium Ice water bottle which I had been looking for for sometime.  This is a new bottle that uses Zeroloft insulation which keeps the fluid cool four times longer than standard bike bottles all by keeping it very light too.  I could not find anyone local that carried the bottle except for the Camelbak Podium Chill bottle which looks just like this bottle but does not use the same insulation.  These bottles are expensive but I got mine through REI during their recent sale so they were quite a bargain and about what retailers are selling the Chill for.  If you are in the market this bottle is definitely a major improvement in water bottle technology.

Through playing around with the new Garmin Edge 500 I also decided to learn the Metric Measurement System and thought the best way was to immerse myself.  There has been several efforts in the United States to go metric and I remember back in the 1970's that there was a conversion push as some of the road signs had both statute and metric distances.  The United States actually is one of only three countries that do not officially use the metric system, along with Burma (Myanmar) and Liberia.

It is all in the conversion that everyone is afraid, however, and like anything if you just start using it you soon do not have a need for converting.  Through working in the healthcare and air medical fields for my career 24 Hour Time or Military Time is used so as to prevent medication and other errors.  I have all my clocks set that way now and it is so much more efficient than AM and PM.  Now don't get me started on Time Zones as to further prevent confusion I think we should all just go on Greenwich Mean Time.  Did you know that all airplanes in the air must use this time that they call Zulu so as to prevent confusion on what planes are flying at any given time!  I know probably a bit far fetched as 12:00 Noon would not have the same meaning except in England!

So from now on my posts and maps will all be in metric!  A map of the ride can be viewed from my Garmin Connect Account and have fun converting!

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