Scott cycles…

Nothing really important. Nothing really exciting…
RSS icon Email icon Bullet (black)
  • Cycling 101: Standing up – your key to comfort!

    Posted on January 8th, 2017 Scott No comments

    A rider asked me about standing up.  They said in spin classes, they could stand up and it was easy.  On a bicycle, it always felt wobbly.  This is TRUE!

    A spin bikes contact point with the floor is at LEAST 18-24″ wide.  Your bikes contact point with the road is about 1″ wide.  Let go of a spin bike, it falls over.  Let go of any bicycle – it falls over.  That being said – standing up on a *REGULAR* basis is a key to keeping your butt happy on a long bike ride.  It relieves pressure on your crotch, it stretches your legs, back, neck and anything else you want to stretch… but how do you do it?

    Let’s break down some basics to get you started.

    The first step is getting used to how the bike feels when standing up.  I suggest you find a flat, open, car free stretch of road.  Ride down the road at a good comfortable speed, hold onto your brake levers (on a road bike), with your pedals in a 3-9 position (level to the ground) gradually ease out of the seat.  Rise up as much as you feel comfortable.  Coast for a bit.  Enjoy the feeling!  As your speed slows, slowly move back into the saddle and start pedaling again.   Each “try” should last from about two to ten seconds.

    Try this basic step as many times as you want, as often as you want – for the rest of your cycling career!  The more you do it, the more comfortable you will be.  You don’t have to do this all day, just until you feel more comfortable or understand how the bike feels.

    Once you are comfortable with this, you can try some “advanced” standing and stretching.  That is, as you rise out of the saddle, put one foot at the bottom and drop your heel. This will stretch your calves.  Pedal around half way and stretch the other.  You can also push your pelvis forward and stretch your abs, obliques and other core muscles that have been “bunched up” for a while.  This relieves your back a little as well.  I find on-bike stretching to be very relieving.

    As you progress in your standing – you can attempt to pedal while standing.  This is MUCH easier “under power”.  That is, when going up a hill or in a big gear.  As you pedal, the bike will move around under you.  This is COMPLETELY normal.  The change of weight distribution and power delivery will move things around.  Do not be alarmed.  Your bike does NOT want to fall over when it is moving.  Unlike our coasting standing up, I suggest you start standing up on a gentle hill, so you are applying some power.  On the “downstroke” gently rise out of the saddle. and keep pedaling.   You will feel a surge of power.  Now, you are using your leg muscles and your body weight to propel the bike.  This will make help you get up the hill or go faster.  Unfortunately, it will wear you out faster.  Your butt is no longer supporting you, your legs are!  This is great for stretching, sprinting, climbing – see where YOU like to do it!

    Eventually – this will become as natural as getting up and walking to the kitchen, it just takes some practice!

    Special Note About Trainers:  On any static trainer, your bike will feel funky when you stand up.  Any time you stand up on the road, your bike moves around a bit.  When the bike is fixed/held stationary, this movement is not possible.  I’ve mastered standing up on a bicycle on a banked velodrome, but the trainer still feels weird.  This is normal and not something to be overly concerned about!  Relax, stretch and get back to riding!    

  • Cycling 101 – Shifting Basics

    Posted on January 7th, 2017 Scott No comments

    As a life long cyclist, I have learned that most cyclists take a lot of things for granted.  If I had to explain how to balance on a bicycle, I would be completely lost.  That being said – there are many smaller components of riding a bicycle that scare and even intimidate novice cyclists.  As a YSC Tour de Pink cyclist, I’ve seen everything from very experienced cyclists to people who have ridden less than 40 miles before they start the 220 mile journey.  Sometimes, a little knowledge goes a LONG way.  In this article, I hope I can share some basics of shifting your average bicycle.  As *MOST* people ride road bikes on a TdP, and *MOST* have Shimano components – I am going to speak to that.  If you have SRAM or Campy, or ride a mountain bike – and have questions – feel free to ask questions!

    Important note: There is a TON of info here, but realistically it all comes together with a little experience – read it slow, try it out, read it again, try it again!  You do _NOT_ have to memorize ANY of this!  Everything here could be taught in a 10 minute – in person – talk – it’s just challenging to convey in words!  

    The Basics:

    If you have a modern multi-geared bicycle you have 1, 2 or 3 chainrings in the front.  These are the large toothy things attached to your crankset.  The photo I included has 2 chainrings.  Some bicycle will have a smaller one.  We will call that the “granny ring”.

    Which chainring you are in will dramatically affect how hard it is to pedal your bicycle.  If you are in the large or big ring (the one with the most teeth), it will be MUCH harder than in the small ring.  If you have three – the granny will be significantly easier.

    All of the shifting in the FRONT of your bicycle is controlled by your LEFT shifter.  (We will discuss this more in a minute).  Your left shifter will move the chain from one ring to another – allowing you to go faster or be able to pedal up that big hill (or make it home when you are really tired.  There is no shame in riding in the small ring, the big ring or any other gear on your bicycle.  It’s all about riding the bike!

    All things being the same (you didn’t change gears in the back) – shifting from your big chainring to your small chainring (shifting “down”) will make your bike much easier to pedal.  Shifting “up” or to the big chainring will make your bicycle much harder to pedal.

    The next part of the bike we are going to talk about is the cassette.  This is the rest of the gears of a bicycle.  The cassette is mounted to the rear hub of the bicycle and much like different size chainring – will affect how easy or hard it is to pedal your bicycle.  Which gear you are in – on your cassette – is controlled by your RIGHT shifter.  Here is the “catch”.  While a bigger chainring makes it harder to pedal, a SMALLER cog on your cassette makes it hard to pedal.  This is VERY important to understanding how to shift a bicycle.

    The cassette will have 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 or 11 cogs.  The smallest cog is the hardest gear on the cassette.  The largest is the easiest.  If you ignore (for a moment) which chainring you are in, shifting to a bigger cog will make it easier to pedal.  Shifting to a smaller cog will make it harder to pedal.

    Note:  Some bikes have what is called “Optical Gear Display” or “OGD” which will give you and indication of what gear you are in.  This can be helpful, but I find that a quick glance down or through your legs to see what gear is just as effective.  

    If you understand the basics I have set up here – you are ready to get shifting!

     

    In most modern road bikes, the shifting is integrated into your brake levers.  As you can see in the photo here, there three basic parts of the lever.  The “hoods” are the large black area at the top of the photo.  This is a GREAT place to hold onto your bike.  It offers you access to your brakes, your shifters and is just plain comfortable!

    The next part is the large silver part.  This is primarily your BRAKE lever, but it is also your shifter.  On both the right and the left, pushing the large lever will shift you to something bigger (remember, bigger in the front and bigger in the back do the OPPOSITE things).

     

    Finally, on the “back” of the brake/shift lever, there is a smaller lever.  This is the “other shifter”.  Pressing this small lever will move the chain to something smaller.  It should be noted that the big lever can move 1 or more clicks allowing you to change MULTIPLE gears at once.  The small lever must be pushed multiple times to shift multiple gears!

    We’ve covered a LOT of material – so let’s summarize with a few rock solid basics before we go into “How do I shift my bike?”

    • You have two shifters.  Right controls the REAR derailleur (notice Right and Rear both start with R!).   LEFT controls the FRONT derailleur.
    • Pushing the BIG lever on either side will shift to something BIGGER.
    • Pushing the LITTLE lever on either side will shift to something SMALLER.
    • BIGGER on the FRONT makes it harder to pedal (but may be faster!)
    • SMALLER on the REAR makes it easier to pedal (better for hills!)

    With those 5 bullets, you know EVERYTHING you need to shift your bike!

    Getting Started

    If you have not ridden a multi-geared bike, I suggest you shift a few times, standing next to your bike.  Push each lever.  Get a feel for how they move.  (Please – only 1-2 clicks on each, if you are not pedaling when shifting, you do stress your bike a bit.) We just want you to get a brief feel.  The large shift lever moves a LOT more than the small – just see how it works.

    The best way to get started is on a trainer, where you do not have to worry about traffic, curbs, kids and dogs!  If you have a trainer, put your bike on there and start pedaling.  If you don’t have one, that’s okay!  You will want your bicycle in a “medium” gear.  That is the small (or middle) chainring in the front and a “middle” gear in the rear.  If you don’t have a trainer, ask a friend to hold your bike off the ground, pedal the bike with your hand and shift away!

    Time to pedal and shift!  Ride around a flat area (or spin on your trainer) and shift!  I would suggest a “drill” where you try a few things, after each, pedal for 10-30 seconds to feel the difference.  Here is a good starter drill:

    • Using your right shifter – go “up” one (push large lever 1 click) (pedaling just got easier)
    • Using your right shifter – go “down” one (push small lever 1 click)
    • Using the right shifter – go “up” a few gears (push the large lever 2-3 clicks)
    • Using the right shifter – go “down” a few gears (push the small lever multiple times)
    • Using the right shifter – go “all the way up” (push the large lever multiple times until it wont move any more) – This is your easiest gear – in this chainring.
    • Using the left shifter – go “all the way down” (push the small lever multiple times until it wont click any more) – This is your hardest gear – in this chainring.

    Unless you live in a very hilly area – you probably have enough to ride for a long time, right now!  Many people rarely shift in the front.  I’ll talk about the front, now!  You will want to be in a “middle” gear in the back to start this drill.  Use what you learned above to sort that out!

    • Using you left shifter – go to the big chainring (push the large lever).  The bike should get a lot harder to pedal.
    • Do some of the drill from above – note, everything is exactly the same – just harder to pedal!
    • Using your left shifter – go to the small/middle chainring (push the small lever).  The bike should get a lot easier to pedal.
    • Do some of the drill from above – note, everything is exactly the same – just easier to pedal!
    • If you have 3 chainrings …. continue on!
    • Using your left shifter – go to the small chainring (push the small lever).  The bike should get a lot easier to pedal.
    • Do some of the drill from above – note, everything is exactly the same – just easier to pedal!

    Things to Remember

    • Big lever always goes BIGGER
    • Small lever always goes SMALLER
    • Right lever is REAR
    • Bigger in the rear = EASIER
    • Left lever is FRONT
    • Bigger in the front = HARDER
    • ABSOLUTELY nobody is PERFECT at shifting.  I have seen a Tour de France stage lost by a missed shift!
    • Practice helps!  The more you ride, the better you get!

     

  • Is it the end of an era?

    Posted on October 7th, 2016 Scott 4 comments

    Maybe. After being treated like a second or third class citizen because I have a google apps account, I've FINALLY decided to just deal with the crap I lose – and move back to a Gmail account. +Zeke Cao explained some of it to me – and I appreciate that, but gmail is just easier.

    Not that G+ is relevant or nearly as used – but I still like it – so you can find me over here (where I was originally) +Scott Patton for easy reference …

    Hit me over there, or @ScottPatton on twitter – or text me – or hell, I'm even on FB now.

    Peace out!

    +Scott Patton

    #blogit
    

    Embedded Link

    Scott Patton – Google+

    Google+: View post on Google+

    Post imported by Google+Blog. Created By Daniel Treadwell.

  • Tales of the Tailpipe

    Posted on August 3rd, 2016 Scott 1 comment

    So I got my motorcycle with an aftermarket exhaust, put on my some sort of odd-engineering specialist. This photo shows much of the reason I wanted to replace it. Little did I know that it was basically not connected to my motorcycle.

    I found a full exhaust system for $130 .. used, but in perfect condition. I wont go into the 4 hour saga of installing it, but – lets just say it was a BITCH!

    Everything worked GREAT… or so I thought. Turns out, my aftermarket center stand has a gizmo (shown below) that blocks the center stand from going up to far. The new one doesn't. I went for a short lunch ride today, to run an errand and I heard a really weird noise. Now… motorcycles make a lot of noise, but this one was funky. Turns out the center stand was going up high enough to hit the chain (just a little) and the chain was slowly cutting off the foot of the center stand. (well, at least part of it).

    Glad I found it … after a little thought and analysis I managed to come up with a work around that will hold me over until at least the weekend.

    Overall review on my Leo Vince pipe – AWESOME! Quieter than the old one, looks really nice, all the parts match and since its all bolted together – it doesn't backfire!

    #winning
    #blogit
    

    Tales of the Tailpipe

    So I got my motorcycle with an aftermarket exhaust, put on my some sort of odd-engineering specialist. This photo shows much of the reason I wanted to replace it. Little did I know that it was basically not connected to my motorcycle.

    I found a full exhaust system for $130 .. used, but in perfect condition. I wont go into the 4 hour saga of installing it, but – lets just say it was a BITCH!

    Everything worked GREAT… or

    Google+: View post on Google+

    Post imported by Google+Blog. Created By Daniel Treadwell.

  • Is Change Bad?

    Posted on June 18th, 2016 Scott 2 comments

    In 2000, I got off a bicycle going about 30 mph. It wasn't fun. I broke my collarbone, scapula and had a major concussion. I was also scared shitless to race a bicycle. It was a bad period in my life. I countered it with 2 things…. buying a motorcycle and announcing at bicycle races.

    When I moved to Georgia, I picked up where I left off in Colorado with my announcing. Since 2007 – I've announced every major event at the Dick Lane Velodrome. It looks like my streak will end on 7/9/2016.

    With my knowledge of track racing and my officials license, I'm actually qualified to officiate. The velodrome has asked me to hand over the mic and put on the blue shirt. I've asked to officiate from my motorcycle – as that is my preference – but that really makes no sense (I'm just kidding, I didn't ask … it was a lame attempt at humor).

    I'm not gonna lie. When I walk up to the #DLV that weekend, it will be weird. Now, my wacko commentary and silly comments will probably only be heard by 1-2 people. Rather than being the guy that can kid with the riders and goof off – I have to make the calls. I'm honestly not sure I like this, but I love track racing (I love bike racing) and at this point in my life – this is my "job".

    I'm sorry #FreightTrain #BingBong #SkinnyChad #DoubleBarrell – you're going to have to find somebody else to prolong your legacy.

    Thanks for the opportunity! Both to announce and now to do something new!

    #blogit
    

    Embedded Link

    Pro Race Series | The Dick Lane Velodrome
    Back for 2016 is Dick Lane Velodrome’s Pro Race Series(PRS). These events will continue the PRS tradition, bringing to the fore-front the best of the best riders that the US has to offer. They’ll be pushing the envelope of speed and danger in both hard charging sprint events and grueling …

    Google+: View post on Google+

    Post imported by Google+Blog. Created By Daniel Treadwell.

  • Things I learned officiating this weekend:

    Posted on May 15th, 2016 Scott 10 comments

    + Electric jackets take up the same amount of space as fleece jackets – and are warmer.
    + It's cold in Tennessee in May.
    + Scoring a time trial and having accurate, on-time results is tedious, but with a good system – its efficient.
    + The average bike racer has NO idea what goes into scoring any event.
    + Masters 35+ criteriums can be officiated on cruise control … speed – FAST
    + Junior parents don't know the rules
    + Garmin bicycle computers apparently make you faster than stop watches (multiple stop watches)
    + Tennessee bike racers are generally very well behaved

    Great weekend, great mentoring – I actually learned a ton about officiating!

    #blogit

    Google+: View post on Google+

    Post imported by Google+Blog. Created By Daniel Treadwell.

  • All good things must come to an end

    Posted on May 3rd, 2016 Scott No comments

    When I bought my first motorcycle – my dad was pretty excited, I think. He sent me a bunch of random stuff a new motorcyclist should probably have. One of the things he sent me…. a pair of gloves. Olympia perforated leather gloves. (Keep in mind, this was in 2001).

    I rode those gloves (unless it was very cold) for the duration of my ownership of that motorcycle. I LOVE those gloves. When I got my new bike last year, I dug out the gloves and wore them most of the summer. (I got some other gloves that are better when its not quite as hot).

    Imagine my sadness when I looked down and saw this…

    Now – the quest for new gloves (I like) begins. Something with a little more protection might be good.

    #blogit

    All good things must come to an end

    When I bought my first motorcycle – my dad was pretty excited, I think. He sent me a bunch of random stuff a new motorcyclist should probably have. One of the things he sent me…. a pair of gloves. Olympia perforated leather gloves. (Keep in mind, this was in 2001).

    I rode those gloves (unless it was very cold) for the duration of my ownership of that motorcycle. I LOVE those gloves. When I got my new bike

    Google+: View post on Google+

    Post imported by Google+Blog. Created By Daniel Treadwell.

  • Where did 200 miles take me?

    Posted on April 30th, 2016 Scott 1 comment

    When you do a YSC Tour de Pink – one of the many slogans you hear/see is "Where will 200 miles take you?"  The list of places is long … internal and external… it will most DEFINITELY touch your heart.  Having said that – it took me to a bizarre (but friendly) place!

    During my fund raising – I decided to go door to door to solicit contributions.  On my way to earning over $3000 I met many of my neighbors that I had never even spoken to.  That was nice.  I gave them a flyer with my name, email and phone number.  The neighborhood contributed over $500!  Very cool.

    Yesterday, I was driving to the track when my phone rang.  I answered it and t was one of my neighbors.  She remembered that I could fix bicycles and stuff – so she was wondering if I could help her…. fix her oven.  (Of course….)   

    As it turns out, she just needed to have the heating element changed – which is truly and easy job.  

    So yes… 200 miles took me to having my head in the oven… but where exactly was that – it was me, a technically and physically able human helping somebody who needed just a little help.  While the effort (about 5 minutes) was TRULY trivial to me – it meant a TON to my neighbor.  

    That is what the Tour de Pink is to me.  Helping people – people I don't know.  Your donations to my fund raising help me help others.  Each and every dollar I raised for the YSC was important to me, but far more important to an organization helping people!  

    What can you (or we) do today to help somebody?  Remember – what may be small to you may be HUGE to somebody else!

    #blogit

    Google+: View post on Google+

    Post imported by Google+Blog. Created By Daniel Treadwell.

  • When Websites Lie – they lose my business

    Posted on April 12th, 2016 Scott No comments

    So – I needed a bag for my motorcycle – one that could keep my crap good and dry in a rainstorm – on a trip.  Dad recommended one – I found it for $105 on amazon – but I also found bike bag shop that sold it for $104.99.  Not much of a savings – but they offer an $11 coupon if I simply post their product on my Facebook and/or twitter.  Sure… sounds great.  

    Here is the horse-pucky …. If I buy that bag for $104.99 – I get free shipping.  

    If I use the secret code – I get the bag for $93.99 + $10 shipping. 

    Now … the complete tomfoolery – if I just want the FedEx folks to drop it on my very safe porch I have to pay $3 to get them to check waive signature?   #bullshit  – yeah, I said it.

    Amazon – $105 – free
    Them: $104.99 + $3 
    Them: $93.99 + $10 + 3

    You insult my by offering a great deal that isn't…. Amazon may be the online Walmart, but I used smile.amazon.com and sent some money to charity, not asshattery. 

    BTW… creative folks can find the business by "reading between the lines" and/or eliminating spaces + .com…

    #peaceout  
    #blogit

    Google+: View post on Google+

    Post imported by Google+Blog. Created By Daniel Treadwell.

  • Sometimes I am SO smart

    Posted on March 18th, 2016 Scott No comments

    About a week or so ago, I wanted a new way to integrate my G+, FB, Twitter and Blog. I researched it an the guy who wrote the Google+ sharing software I use wrote a new version. Wow, great… let me install. Okay, it works ALMOST as good as the old one – and for just $19.95 I can make it work the way I want it to… but I dont want to spend $20 on my blog, I mean only like 2 people look at it and one of them is ME! It would be so nice….

    Well, after a week or dorking and TRYING to make it work I got annoyed and was on the CUSP of paying $20 and then I said … dude…. the old one works exactly like you want it to, why not go back?

    Yeah, it took my brain a week to figure out NOT to fix something that WASN'T broken.

    #sosmart
    #firstworldproblems
    #blogit
    

    Google+: View post on Google+

    Post imported by Google+Blog. Created By Daniel Treadwell.

Facebook Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com