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  1. #1
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    Rode my first double century!

    I achieved a milestone this past weekend. 3 years ago, a friend got me started on road cycling; at that time, a 15 mile ride was tough. I worked at it and rode my first metric century. 2 years ago, I rode a few metric centuries and finished a century. Last year, I rode a few centuries. This year, I trained and I completed my first double century (Solvang Double Century) and my goal is to qualify for the CA Triple Crown. I owe a lot to cycling...I lost 35 lbs, lost my pot gut, down to about 12% fat, and I'm fitter than guys 20 years younger than me at work.

    I have a dumb(?) question though. During the double century ride, my bike started leaning to the left. It wasn't due to the wind. I tried adjusting my weight distribution, putting more weight on the right pedal then the left pedal, tried pushing the handlebars with my right arm but nothing worked. The lean was so bad that my left knee was hitting the top tube while I was pedaling. I checked the wheels to make sure they were aligned.

    I had my bike professionally fitted at a LBS (BG fit). Any ideas or suggestions? Thanks in advance.

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    Fit people, like facts, have a well-known left wing bias. J/K.

    I wish I had an answer. Every so often, we get a little rightward on our tandem and I have to listen to my stoker complain. I just tell him to read my collar (NorCal jersey from Corbin. Collar says "HTFU")

    Oh, by the way, congratulations. What's the next double on your calender? I may come down and do a couple in NorCal this year, so maybe I'll see you as you cruise on by. We should be good if you stay on my left.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Homeyba's Avatar
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    Solvang is a great first double. Glad to hear you enjoyed yourself. I second, what's next on the agenda?

    As far as the leaning goes, are you sure you weren't just tired? I've been doing long distance riding and doubles for 20years and never really heard of that complaint before except from someone with MS. Does it do it now after you've had some rest?
    It doesn't get harder, you just go slower.

  4. #4
    Senior Member bruce19's Avatar
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    First I have to say I am totally impressed with your accomplishment. And, really happy for you and all you've done to change your life for the better. Good stuff. If it were me I'd get on the bike again and ride. If it still leans it's the bike. If not it was you.

  5. #5
    Semper Fi, A way of life. qcpmsame's Avatar
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    Great accomplishment on finishing the Solvang Double, that is something to be proud about. No idea about a left bias to a bicycle while riding it. My only thought was a bearing in one wheel going out but I believe, from experience, that you would have warning about that and it would be quickly identified. Best of luck in solving that mystery. One question, have you tried riding since the Solvang? Does the bike still lean to the left if so?

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  6. #6
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    Donger--great ride and results! I've read a lot about Solvang here and it sounds like a great test. Is it a 200 miler or 120 miles?
    Ride your Ride!!

  7. #7
    ES&D t4mv's Avatar
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    Congrats on the double!

    I'm assuming the bike didn't start off leaning left, so here're a few more thoughts for you.. Was your chamois starting to bug you as the ride progressed? Maybe you were just tired and that's what happens, form-wise anyway, when you get tired? Might want to report back to that LBS about this issue and see if they might have missed something the first time around.

  8. #8
    Senior Member jdon's Avatar
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    Possibly fatigue and/or dehydration.
    Quote Originally Posted by maddmaxx View Post
    How are you ever going to live in the real world if you can't get along with people who don't believe what you do?

  9. #9
    www.ocrebels.com Rick@OCRR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jppe View Post
    Donger Is it a 200 miler or 120 miles?
    The Solvang Double is 200 miles or thereabouts. Last time I rode it I think it came out to 197.5 mi. but very close to 200 miles.

    Regarding the leaning thing . . . yes I have experienced that and it turned out to be a pinched nerve in my lower back. My body was trying to compensate for the pinched nerve, hence the lean. Like you, after I noticed it I tried to combat it with a slightly different riding position but nothing worked.

    I actually DNF'd at Spring Solvang one year because this problem became so bad I could no longer ride straight down the road; the bike wanted to go into the ditch on the right side of the road, plus the pain was quite bad! So I pulled out at Los Alamos checkpoint.

    The next week I went to a chiropractor who is also a very experienced long distance cyclist (Saralie Liner) and she fixed the problem, plus assigned me exercises (one of which uses a foam roller), all of which cured the problem. Now I have no lean when I ride!

    Not saying this is for sure your problem, but it certainly sounds possible.

    Oh, and congratulations on your first California Double! The California Triple Crown is a wonderful organization too! Chuck Bramwell, Frank Neal and Charlie Irwin do a great job of keeping everything current, accurate and fun.

    Here's a link for anyone not familiar with the California Triple Crown: http://www.caltriplecrown.com/

    Rick / OCRR

  10. #10
    Senior Member Blanchje's Avatar
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    Awesome job. Just one more reason this forum is an inspiration. It's a great feeling to realize getting a bit older doesn't preclude us from accomplishing goals.

  11. #11
    Seat Sniffer Biker395's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick@OCRR View Post
    The Solvang Double is 200 miles or thereabouts. Last time I rode it I think it came out to 197.5 mi. but very close to 200 miles.

    Regarding the leaning thing . . . yes I have experienced that and it turned out to be a pinched nerve in my lower back. My body was trying to compensate for the pinched nerve, hence the lean. Like you, after I noticed it I tried to combat it with a slightly different riding position but nothing worked.

    I actually DNF'd at Spring Solvang one year because this problem became so bad I could no longer ride straight down the road; the bike wanted to go into the ditch on the right side of the road, plus the pain was quite bad! So I pulled out at Los Alamos checkpoint.

    The next week I went to a chiropractor who is also a very experienced long distance cyclist (Saralie Liner) and she fixed the problem, plus assigned me exercises (one of which uses a foam roller), all of which cured the problem. Now I have no lean when I ride!

    Not saying this is for sure your problem, but it certainly sounds possible.

    Oh, and congratulations on your first California Double! The California Triple Crown is a wonderful organization too! Chuck Bramwell, Frank Neal and Charlie Irwin do a great job of keeping everything current, accurate and fun.

    Here's a link for anyone not familiar with the California Triple Crown: http://www.caltriplecrown.com/

    Rick / OCRR
    Glad you chimed in, Rick. I remember when you had the same symptoms!

    Congrats on the doubleC, donger. I only have one question:

    The first double I completed years ago was the now-defunct Butterfield Double. When I was all done, I looked down and saw that my odometer only showed 197 miles.

    Screw that! I told one of the guys I was riding with (in retrospect, I think it was Big Ring Dave) that I was going to turn back and do the last three. No way I was going to end up with less than 200 on that odometer. He smiled knowingly and told me that he knew I'd do that after the first one, and I'd never do it again.

    And he was right! So the question is ... was it initially less than 200 and you did the rest to round it out?
    Proud parent of a happy inner child ...
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  12. #12
    Senior Member az_cyclist's Avatar
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    Congrats donger, on finishing. I ran out of energy between sags at Guadelupe and Los Alamos, and could not force myself to eat anything. Solvang is a challenging double. I am pretty sure I will ride Hemet in April, and the Grand Tour in June.

  13. #13
    Senior member Dan Burkhart's Avatar
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    Listening to too much NPR, not enough Rush.
    Edit: Better throw this in here so I don't get your thread banished to P&R.
    Gearhubs demystified and other cool stuff.


    Rule #12: The correct number of bikes to own is n+1

  14. #14
    Senior Member JerrySTL's Avatar
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    FYI: Cafe Press has some of those oval 200 car window stickers. Puts the 13.1 and 26.2 stickers to shame.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Homeyba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick@OCRR View Post
    The Solvang Double is 200 miles or thereabouts. Last time I rode it I think it came out to 197.5 mi. but very close to 200 miles:.
    Did you know that they changed the route this year. They got rid of Drum Canyon and ran it back through Foxen Canyon.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick@OCRR View Post
    …Regarding the leaning thing . . . yes I have experienced that and it turned out to be a pinched nerve in my lower back. My body was trying to compensate for the pinched nerve, hence the lean.
    This reminded me that I did see someone have that problem on RAAM. His problem was also a pinched nerve. I would guess that you might be aware of that though. They generally hurt.
    It doesn't get harder, you just go slower.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Mobile 155's Avatar
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    Good job donger. Just in time to come down for the Hemet double next month. Well in about three weeks.
    Life is like riding a bicycle - in order to keep your balance, you must keep moving. ~Albert Einstein.

  17. #17
    Senior Member az_cyclist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mobile 155 View Post
    Good job donger. Just in time to come down for the Hemet double next month. Well in about three weeks.
    I will register for Hemet this week. I booked the hotel room last night

  18. #18
    Erect member since 1953 cccorlew's Avatar
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    Is your bike riding straight now?
    And congrats on your double. It's a big deal and you must be proud. And, if you can do one you can do 3!

    Hemet. What a wonderland.
    Here's my snarky review/ride report
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  19. #19
    Seat Sniffer Biker395's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cccorlew View Post
    Is your bike riding straight now?
    And congrats on your double. It's a big deal and you must be proud. And, if you can do one you can do 3!

    Hemet. What a wonderland.
    Here's my snarky review/ride report
    http://ccorlew.blogspot.com/2010/04/...l#comment-form
    "At last we got to a decent hill. Its really only 1000 feet over eight miles or so, but to hear people talk youd have thought it was Mt. Diablo."
    Lol ... yep ... the Sage climb. Not all that steep or long, but it's about the only significant climb on the route. I drove sag one a hot day a few years ago, and plopped myself right at the top of that grade ... I knew people would be needing water. Too bad my car wouldn't start afterwards.

    I agree about the Hemet DC. There was a time when it was probably mostly rural and very nice, but there is a lot more development out there than there used to be, and some stretches that were a bit dicey. The lunch food rocks, though.

    Interesting side note. The one year I did that double, I didn't MO6 it ... I drove over to start in the morning. I got to a gas station in Hemet to buy some gas at about 4AM. One of the guys pumping gas next to me remarked:

    "I'm surprised they're open tonight. The cashier was shot and killed in a robbery last night."

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  20. #20
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    My sole athletic achievement to date is a 12:18 double century (Los Angeles Wheelmen) at age 21. I attempted it because I met a 50-year-old gentleman who was training for it, and who convinced me and two of my UCLA pals to do it with him, despite my abysmal lack of physical coordination or athletic talent of any sort. So there we were, three freshly minted UCLA physics grads and an ex-Marine UCLA physics PhD. While on the ride we met an inspiring 76-year-old retired postal carrier from Watts, who was on his 12th annual DC.

    Congrats -- great achievement at any age.
    Last edited by John E; 03-26-13 at 11:53 AM.
    "Early to bed, early to rise. Work like hell, and advertise." -- George Stahlman
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  21. #21
    Senior Member Mobile 155's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by az_cyclist View Post
    I will register for Hemet this week. I booked the hotel room last night
    Might see you there then.
    Life is like riding a bicycle - in order to keep your balance, you must keep moving. ~Albert Einstein.

  22. #22
    Senior Member az_cyclist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mobile 155 View Post
    Might see you there then.
    Cool. I will be wearing a Arizona Bullshifter jersey. I have ridden the Grand Tour Lowland route twice, in 2011 and 2012. This will be my first time to ride Hemet. I didnt make it all the way last weekend at Solvang.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Mobile 155's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biker395 View Post
    Lol ... yep ... the Sage climb. Not all that steep or long, but it's about the only significant climb on the route. I drove sag one a hot day a few years ago, and plopped myself right at the top of that grade ... I knew people would be needing water. Too bad my car wouldn't start afterwards.

    I agree about the Hemet DC. There was a time when it was probably mostly rural and very nice, but there is a lot more development out there than there used to be, and some stretches that were a bit dicey. The lunch food rocks, though.

    Interesting side note. The one year I did that double, I didn't MO6 it ... I drove over to start in the morning. I got to a gas station in Hemet to buy some gas at about 4AM. One of the guys pumping gas next to me remarked:

    "I'm surprised they're open tonight. The cashier was shot and killed in a robbery last night."

    True, most of the locals use Idyllwild to Banning for climbing. I don't care for Sage because of the condition of the road. Breathless Agony and Ride around the Bear works as well if climbing is in your blood. Amgen will be coming through Benton and down Sage this year and then over Idyllwild to Palm Springs and up to the tram. The tram road at the end should make that a challenge.
    Life is like riding a bicycle - in order to keep your balance, you must keep moving. ~Albert Einstein.

  24. #24
    A might bewildered... Dudelsack's Avatar
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    Donger, just curious. Did you derive your name from the movie 16 Candles?

  25. #25
    www.ocrebels.com Rick@OCRR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mobile 155 View Post
    Might see you there then.
    Might see you there then at Hemet too. I'll be wearing OCRR kit (no big surprise).

    I missed Camino Real because I was in England on business. Missed Joshua Tree due to sickness (but I wasn't too sick to work it!).

    So Hemet will be my first double of the year.

    Rick / OCRR

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