Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Introducing ... Kermit!

Meet my new bike! "Kermit" is an Advocate Lorax that found his way to my house in late February.
Why the new bike? Well, my Vaya, Zippy, has been a good bike for me yet I was still tweaking some fit issues and with it's extra small frame I was running out of options for adding height to my handlebars etc. Also, due to the 26" tires,  I discovered my options were limited for getting better tires for riding gravel.

So, even though I loved little Zippy and he served me well, I started considering a new bike.
I talked to my favorite bike guru from Angry Catfish Bicycles, James, about what to get and quickly decided a new Vaya one size bigger than Zippy would do the trick. Sadly, my size was sold out at Angry Catfish and at Salsa Cycles. So James and I talked options. And I rode a couple of bikes and they were okay. Then I rode a demo model of the Advocate Lorax and knew within, oh, the first 20 feet of my ride that the Lorax was the bike for me. It's hard to say just why I knew...the bike just felt right.

Still, I'd never heard of Advocate really (other than my friend Griff of Mountain Bike Geezer has an Advocate Watchman fatbike and loves it) so was a little hesitant to buy a bike without knowing more about it. So I sent my friend Marty a few text messages to get his opinion of the brand. He texted back immediately saying he loves Advocate, owns one himself (or maybe it's two. I don't remember for sure), likes the Lorax and also knows the man who owns Advocate Cycles and thinks very highly of him. On top of all that, Advocate, donates 100% of their profits to bicycling advocacy efforts (read more about Advocate Cycles here)!

Marty's hearty endorsement was enough to convince me that I for sure wanted the Lorax so walked over to James and said, "Order up a green Lorax for me." So he did. And a week later I had a brand new bike!

It's a gorgeous bike - it is a stunning "Minnesota in Midsummer Green" color with orange detailing and a cool top tune graphic by artist Adam Turman. The frame is chromoly steel with a carbon fork. It has disc brakes and 700x38c wheels. Click HERE for build specs. Click HERE for frame specs.

I got out for a few short hops on Kermit in the past few weeks and now am riding it every day because I'm doing 30 Days of Biking once again (this is my eighth year!). So far, Kermit the Lorax is fitting well and is a dream to ride!

Monday, February 20, 2017

Gravel in February and Goals Ahead

We've had amazingly warm temperatures here in Minnesota as of late. It was 60 some degrees last weekend so I simply had to get out and ride some gravel on my Vaya on Sunday. Owen joined me on his Mukluk. We didn't go far (about 5.5 miles) and we didn't go fast (about 8.5 mph) but we went and that's what matters.

Riding on a sunny Sunday

I've been thinking about my bike goals for 2017. I have decided that I'd like to bike 50 miles on my 50th Birthday but I guess I haven't 100% committed to that goal as of yet. I need to decide soon as March 25th is just over a month away!

Other than that, I have plans to join two friends from high school and Owen and ride from north of Minneapolis to Canada in three days with an average of 85 miles a day. We've got that on the schedule for late July.

The road ahead
Not sure what other bicycling goals I will set for 2017. Whatever they are, I will be logging my milage on a cool little chart I made in my journal - 2017 Bike Milage Goals. I can fill in a box for every 10 miles I've ridden all the way up to 2,000 miles. 
Bike Milage Goals Chart
I've ridden 15 miles this year so far. It's not much but it's a start!