Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Dressing for 7°

  • Gore Sleeveless base layer
  • Giordana Silverline lightweight long sleeve jersey
  • Castelli Insolito Radiation Jacket (with the space blanket liner)
  • Descente Coldout bib tights
  • Novara Stratos rain/wind pants
  • Descente winter socks
  • Toe warmers (that never activated)
  • Pearl Izumi Barrier GTX winter shoes
  • Endura MT500 shoe covers
  • Manzella liners
  • Outdoor Research Gripper gloves
  • Trail's Edge Moose Mitts
  • North Face balaclava
  • Oakley O Frame MX goggles
  • Bell Metropolis helmet with winter liner and rain cover

All in all, I was very comfortable on my way to work. As you can see, the only exposed skin I had was my nose and just a tiny bit of my face.

I will say it over and over again. Those moose mitts are worth their weight in gold. Hardest part is waiting for my fingers to warm up on their own so that the mitts can retain the heat for them.

Hoping that I can get the toe warmers to activate for the ride home. My feet were fine, but they were starting to get chilly by the end of my twelve mile commute. Without the MT500 shoe covers, they'd have been blocks of ice.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Well, at least THAT'S out of the way.

It's only January 7th, but I'm hoping that I've fulfilled my quota of cycling-related injuries for 2013.

On New Year's Day, while adjusting the calipers on my mountain bike to accommodate a different wheelset, I almost cut off my index finger with a disc brake rotor. That's the second time I've done that. When it happened in March of 2012 it was a lot worse. I was afraid I was going to lose half of the nail on my right index finger. This time it was the right index finger again, but only a minor cut and a bad pinch. Got the brakes adjusted and went out and rode Frick to celebrate another year of cycling.

So that should cover injuries related to bike maintenance and mechanics.

On my way to work today, I hit some ice on the Downtown trail between Point Park and the Convention Center. I was traveling somewhere between 15-20 mph when it happened and didn't hit the ground so much with a thud as a slide and some scraping.

The bike was remarkably unaffected. Some shredded bar tape, but that was basically. Pretty impressive, considering I went down on the drive side. I had to re-seat the chain and nudge the right shifter back in place, but that was about it.

As for me, I could tell right away that my right knee and elbow had absorbed most of the impact, but nothing terrible. No holes in my tights and at the time, I didn't see any in my jacket (my almost brand-new jacket that I was wearing for only the second time). After walking around a bit, I noticed that the big toe on my right foot was sore. Again, no hole in my shoe or anything like that. I didn't investigate further because a) I still had a mile and a half to get to work, and b) it was only 30° out.

Once I got to work, I changed out of my bike clothes and got a good chance to survey the damage. Brush burn on the elbow. Same thing on the knee. A hole in the jacket near the shoulder. A hole in the thumb of my brand new gloves. And my big toe. Just a big old mess of purple under the nail. I have no idea what happened to that poor toe, or how, but it was bruised as all get out. When I checked on it later in the day, I could see that it was also bruising pretty good on the bottom of the toe. Crazy stuff. But still walkable, and riding home this evening was no problem.

I really hope this means I can be done with injuries related to actually riding my bike for the year.

I'll be interested to see how my toe progresses overnight and if I'll be able to stuff it back into my cycling shoes for tomorrow's commute. I don't want to have to take any days off when the weather is supposed to get warmer.