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Saturday’s ride; Odd mechanical on yesterday’s recovery ride.

Monday, June 23, 2014 by  
Filed under Daily Blog


Saturday’s ride was hot, fast and fun! The scheduled group ride was about 74 kilometers (46 miles), and I tacked on some extra solo miles before and after the group ride to bring my total up to 115 kilometers (72.5 miles). The heat, wind and humidity were significant factors, particularly the last couple hours of the ride.

We had a fantastic group, and we pushed the pace particularly hard in several places. The 14 kilometer/~9 mile stretch through the swamp, in particular, was a total hammerfest. Most of us (myself included) set PRs in the swamp–and we had a headwind for first 4 kilometers (2.5 miles), and a strong crosswind for the remaining 10 kilometers. Here’s my complete ride with all stats on Strava.

Yesterday morning I wanted to do a light recovery ride. Yes, a real recovery ride (give my article from Saturday a gander if you missed it: “Zen and the art of the Recovery Ride“)!

I set off on my recovery ride about 6:45 AM, and enjoyed a relatively cool, calm and beautiful morning.

I adhered to my new recovery ride credo, and kept my watts, speed and heart rate extremely low the entire ride. Whenever I came to a hill I’d make challenge out of it by seeing how low I could keep my power, speed and heart rate as I ascended.

Yeah, leave it to me to figure out some way to turn a recovery ride into a competition.

Anyway, about an hour into my ride I stopped at this scenic spot and snapped a quick picture (click to enlarge):

Saturday's ride was long, hot and fast, so yesterday I did a light and scenic recovery ride. This was just before my mechanical.

Saturday’s ride was long, hot and fast, so yesterday I did a light and scenic recovery ride. This was just before my mechanical.


I posted the photo to Facebook with the caption, “Easy spin on a beautiful morning! — feeling happy 🙂 ”

After taking the photograph I began to pedal off; somehow my rear derailleur spun around, smacked the seatstay and snapped the derailleur hanger in two. I didn’t have a spare hanger with me, so I had to call Lisa and ask her to come get me. Lisa, who had been awake for all of 30 seconds when my call came through, cheerfully hopped in her car and came to my rescue. More than 20 years of marriage and Lisa still supports everything I do, even when it interrupts her first sip of morning coffee. I love that woman. I’m one lucky dude.

So when I got my bike back to my shop I replaced the derailleur hanger, but the chain was skipping. After a quick diagnostic inspection I saw that a few of the cogs on the upper derailleur pulley were also damaged during the incident. I pulled a pulley (heh) off another derailleur I had lying around, made the repair and went back out to finish my recovery ride.

My rear derailleur (Shimano Ultegra Di2) has been through hell, and it looks it: two hard wrecks, and whatever the hell happened yesterday. I experienced some minor shifting issues after the repair yesterday, and so when I got back I double-checked the hanger alignment and the derailleur adjustments. All looks good, but I think the derailleur is damaged. Might be time for a replacement. I’ll know more after this morning’s ride and a little more wrench time.

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