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2019! The “How was your commute?” thread!

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2019! The “How was your commute?” thread!

Old 05-08-19, 07:15 AM
  #876  
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Definitely can't complain about the weather lately. A nice ride home yesterday and nice ride in this morning. No honking for either ride.
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Old 05-08-19, 07:35 AM
  #877  
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Hooked up with a group ride on the way home last night, so this morning was a recovery ride. Hit a couple of the long lights while they were green, weather was clear, drivers were chilling, nothing to get my heart rate up today. Nice.
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Old 05-08-19, 07:39 AM
  #878  
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I figured I'd send out an update letting those who were curious know where I'm at on the two week anniversary of my surgery date. If you're not curious, well you're getting the update too.

Overall, things are progressing very well. The cold that I caught on the 3rd day in the hospital has thankfully subsided after about 10 days. I don't miss it, either.

One thing I didn't mention in the last update was an interesting discovery made during the surgery. When I was first diagnosed seven years ago from the echocardiograms and the TEE tests, they could see my aortic valve was misshapen. They assumed that it was a congenital condition that I was born with. Once the surgeon actually saw the valve with his own eyes, he could see that it was originally normal, but two of the three flaps had been scarred and had fused together causing my condition. He speculates that at some point in my life I had an undiagnosed bout with rheumatic fever which left my heart damaged. That really didn't change anything for me, but it does give a little hope for my son that it's probably not a condition that he will inherit.

Pain is greatly improved. By choice, I came home from the hospital with nothing more than regular Tylenol (of which I am allowed six pills per day, or 3,000 mg.) They were encouraging me to accept a prescription for pain medicine, but I didn't want to mess around with having opioids at home and all the baggage and risks that comes with them. There were a few times during the first couple days home where maybe I could have used the stronger pain pills if they were available, but during the last week I've managed just fine. The closest thing to which I can compare the pain would be a really bad sunburn on my chest. Every day gets a little better. Currently there is very little pain if I'm sitting still, and I'm down to only taking about 3-4 Tylenol per day. Moving hurts a little more, but is tolerable. However, during those times when I forget, certain arm movements still remind me that I had major surgery. Also, sneezing is an adventure. I've only sneezed 4 times since the surgery, but they've been memorable enough events that I can remember how many times it has happened.

Sleep has been a bit of a challenge. It hurts if I try to lie flat, so sleeping in a bed isn't an option yet. I bought a cheap power recliner/lift chair off of Craigslist and put it in my bedroom and am using that to sleep in at night. It's comfortable for about half the night, but then the lack of position options makes me stiff and I'll usually wake up for an hour or so until I can settle back down and get a few more hours of sleep. I've taken a few naps here and there during the days, but I'm not taking as many as I thought I would. In the hospital I slept quite a bit, and I thought maybe that would carry over for a while at home. I'm guessing most of that hospital sleep was due to all the narcotics they had me on (not that I was complaining at the time.)

I've been walking. A lot. Each day I've been trying to push myself a little harder and a little farther. I'll usually walk two or three times per day, not counting walking around the house or doctors appointments and such. In the nine days since I've left the hospital I've walked about 28 miles total during my self directed rehab sessions. Yesterday I broke 5 miles in a single day for the first time. Today it's supposed to rain all day and I feel like I could use a recovery day so I'm going to take it easy, rest up and then hit it hard again tomorrow.

Structured cardiac rehab classes start next week. They wanted me in them immediately after I was discharged, but the classes were full until the 14th (I guess heart surgery must be all the rage these days.) When I was in the hospital they said the classes would start me on an exercise bike with other heart patients and work with us each class until we can pedal non-stop for 40 minutes with no resistance. Not to sound prideful, but I'm pretty sure I could have already done that before I left the hospital. So I'm not sure what I'm going to do in the classes other than annoy other patients with my humor. I don't think they're used to dealing with full-time bicycle commuters in cardiac rehab. Hopefully I can "CLEP" out early.

They're still trying to get my blood thinned to the proper amount. In the hospital they couldn't get it thin enough, and now it's too thin so they're trying to dial it back. I'm having to go in twice weekly right now as they tweak my medication and test my blood. It sounds like this isn't unusual, and it takes most people a couple months of testing before they hit the magic number with the blood thinners.

I'm not allowed to drive for two more weeks until I meet with the surgeon on the 21st. This makes things a little tricky with all the doctor appointments, as my wife has to chauffeur me around and rearrange her schedule accordingly. I'm sure she can't wait until I can drive myself as I've noticed it's made me a bit of a backseat driver. Getting back on the bicycle won't happen until at least week 6 when my restrictions come off, and then it will depend on how much pain it causes me and how much I'm willing to endure it to ride.

So that's pretty much where we're at on day 14. I feel like I'm recovering on schedule, if not ahead of schedule. I'm very thankful that I went into this whole ordeal in excellent cardio condition as I really think it has helped me bounce back much faster than I would have otherwise.
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Old 05-08-19, 07:39 AM
  #879  
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My perfect morning spring ride was marred by winds this morning - I guess perfection can't last. Must be some kind of ride to school day today - passed several groups of kids and parents with police escorts. It's cool to see kids riding but something sad that they need adults and a cop to chaperone them.
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Old 05-08-19, 09:09 AM
  #880  
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51F, gray
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Old 05-08-19, 11:26 AM
  #881  
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@Tundra_Man, it's good to hear about your progress. When I had surgery on my leg, I was going light on the painkillers, too. But when I got shingles, I took all the vicodin they'd throw at me.
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Old 05-08-19, 12:11 PM
  #882  
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The left front tire of the trike has a hop, and I haven't been able to trace it to anything wrong with the mounting or the tube. I stopped in the only bike shop along my route, Practical Cycles. They used to be a cargo and Brompton dealer in old Sac before moving to this location in Folsom, where they are mainly selling Pedego. Lo and behold, they had exactly one 406-size tire in stock, a Big Apple Plus. That's a win - I can move my rear tire to the left and put a cushier tire on the rear. If only I had a pump at work... if I'd thought it through better I'd have bought it on the way home.
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Old 05-09-19, 06:39 AM
  #883  
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Thanks for the update @Tundra_Man - glad to hear you're able to get out and walk a good bit.

I got out a few minutes early and rode 16.6 miles on my way in today, 3 or so more than my normal route. The low to mid-60s has been great for the morning rides. Sumemr humidity has not kicked in yet either, so I arrive mostly dry and comfortable.
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Old 05-09-19, 07:46 AM
  #884  
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Unlike @mgw4jc, I'm into my summer sweating routine already. Sometimes I wonder if it's psychosomatic -- I see a bike and start sweating. But it's comfortable in the 60s, unlike morning rides in the 80s with 80% humidity later in the summer.

Forecast is for storms today, so I took a longer route in -- just in case I don't get to ride this afternoon. Beat the rain, although it looked like a shower had wet everything on the MUP and the office parking lot already. So the rain came from the south, and stopped 15' short of the east-west road just north of the office? Strange.
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Old 05-09-19, 08:49 AM
  #885  
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53F, sunny, supposed to hit the 80s in the pm
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Old 05-09-19, 10:38 AM
  #886  
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@Tundra_Man, I'm very grateful for your update. You show a lot of strength and endurance.

Tuesday night, coming home from singing rehearsal, it rained unexpectedly. My commuter bike now has fenders, thank goodness, but darn it, I didn't ride it. Instead, I rode my street fixie. I've ridden it a lot lately, and it's fun. So I got really dirty, but the temperature was high enough that I didn't get uncomfortable.

Yesterday I rode to college and back. I took the Hudson River path there, and it took me 30 minutes. Going home, I took 5th Ave which was a lot more annoying than I thought it would be. It took only 20 minutes, but I'm not sure I'll take that route much when I'm in classes regularly unless I really need the extra ten minutes. But 5th Ave sucks less than 2nd Ave.
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Old 05-09-19, 12:40 PM
  #887  
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@Tundra_Man thank you for the update and keep plugging along!


Monday was just about a perfect day of commuting ride in i averaged 15.1mph and ride home 15.2mph then i rode around the neighborhood with my son. It was gorgeous and beautiful day.
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Old 05-09-19, 01:14 PM
  #888  
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
Tuesday night, coming home from singing rehearsal, it rained unexpectedly. My commuter bike now has fenders, thank goodness, but darn it, I didn't ride it. Instead, I rode my street fixie.

... But 5th Ave sucks less than 2nd Ave.
I got caught out by that rain as well, on a bike with no fenders. I went pretty slow to keep the mess to a minimum.

Why do you say 5th is worse than 2nd? I know 2nd has all that mess around the midtown tunnel entrance, but generally there is a lot less traffic (bikes, cars, pedestrians) than 5th, no? Is there something else I'm missing?
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Old 05-10-19, 06:54 AM
  #889  
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Sprinkles on the way home last night. Some wet roads and some drizzle on the way in this morning. Still a couple of good rides.

I overheard a couple of co-workers talking in the parking lot, possibly / probably about me. All I caught was, "There's no way I would do that, no matter how much gas money I could save."

Happy Friday!
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Old 05-10-19, 07:20 AM
  #890  
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Cool cloudy ride in this morning...about 50 degrees (Yes, 50 degrees in May in Dallas), with about a 12 to 15 MPH NE wind. The wind is somewhat in my face on the way into work...but it will be mostly at my back on the way home. Looking forward to that.
Also my first ride of any real distance with the new shimano 105 R7000 group on the bike, as well as the new DT Swiss wheels and Continental GP4000 All Season tires. All things felt and rode well. The bike feels lighter and quicker. I weighed it last night and it is actually lighter by about 2 to 3 lbs.
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Old 05-10-19, 07:21 AM
  #891  
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Originally Posted by mgw4jc View Post
I overheard a couple of co-workers talking in the parking lot, possibly / probably about me. All I caught was, "There's no way I would do that, no matter how much gas money I could save."

Happy Friday!
That's funny and shows that most people just don't get it! If I did this just to save gas money I'd have punted a long time ago! Cooler this morning, didn't even get to 50F and not supposed to go over 60F this afternoon. It's hard to complain about upper 40's when just a few weeks ago upper 30's felt like a heatwave.
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Old 05-10-19, 07:55 AM
  #892  
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Weather has been all over the spectrum this week. I have a 17 plus mile commute with 6.5 miles of gravel to spice it up. Tuesday it was 24 degrees in the morning with clear and calm, while the ride home started in the mid 40's near Lake Superior and warmed up to 60 up the ridge south of town. Wednesday is my hockey at lunch day so no biking. Thursday woke up to 6" of heavy snow and winds off the lake, not biking in that. This morning it warmed up to 33 degrees and partly cloudy with calm winds. Was a zoo of a ride. Slowed down at different points for crossing deer, turkeys and a beaver, checked out a pair of swans nesting in one marsh and another pair further up in another marsh. No coyote today, saw him on Tuesday. Wonder who I'll see this afternoon?
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Old 05-10-19, 08:06 AM
  #893  
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this morning I saw rain 30-40% according to weather underground app during my commute hour. I then found the rain a couple times along the way. It was hard enough at one point I stopped and put my cycling hat on.. (rain all over the glasses)

I also found a wallet with license and bank card in it, on the side of the road. Later, I found a police officer and gave the wallet to him.

i hope it is not raining on the way home
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Old 05-10-19, 09:25 AM
  #894  
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53F, sunny, supposed to be high 80s in the pm.

Man, total bike-mania on the trails and roads this past week! I am going to take a lengthy detour going home this afternoon and don't expect to encounter much of that.
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Old 05-10-19, 09:59 AM
  #895  
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Originally Posted by robertorolfo View Post
Why do you say 5th is worse than 2nd? I know 2nd has all that mess around the midtown tunnel entrance, but generally there is a lot less traffic (bikes, cars, pedestrians) than 5th, no? Is there something else I'm missing?
No, I said 5th sucks LESS than 2nd. 2nd is a mess near the Queensboro Bridge as well as the Queens Midtown Tunnel. We really need an East River Greenway, and we need it to be continuous from Dyckman St to the Battery.
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Old 05-10-19, 11:40 AM
  #896  
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
No, I said 5th sucks LESS than 2nd. 2nd is a mess near the Queensboro Bridge as well as the Queens Midtown Tunnel. We really need an East River Greenway, and we need it to be continuous from Dyckman St to the Battery.
Sorry, that was a mistake on my part, as I understood your sentiment that 2nd was worse than 5th, and you listed the exact reasons why I thought you might feel that way. And I pretty much agree. Although both of those spots are just a few blocks long, they are indeed really bad.

I also totally agree about an East River Greenway, but with the way the FDR comes right over to the water at some points, I'm not sure how they could do it. I'd also love to see a pedestrian/bike only bridge from Hunterspoint or Greenpoint, but I don't think anyone is even talking about that.
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Old 05-10-19, 12:14 PM
  #897  
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Originally Posted by robertorolfo View Post
Sorry, that was a mistake on my part, as I understood your sentiment that 2nd was worse than 5th, and you listed the exact reasons why I thought you might feel that way. And I pretty much agree. Although both of those spots are just a few blocks long, they are indeed really bad.

I also totally agree about an East River Greenway, but with the way the FDR comes right over to the water at some points, I'm not sure how they could do it. I'd also love to see a pedestrian/bike only bridge from Hunterspoint or Greenpoint, but I don't think anyone is even talking about that.
OK we have to talk on the phone. You've sparked some big ideas, and I have some of my own. I'll email you.
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Old 05-10-19, 04:41 PM
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Wow, it's May 10, and today was my first bike commute of the year. Gets later every year it seems. I've definitely become a fair-weather commuter, and it was a long, cold winter...heck, we still had snowfall last week! That, plus needing to schlep my kids around, travelling for work, and vacation, all added up to a very late start. Which is not to say that I haven't ridden at all this year. I did get out for some weekend rides earlier this spring, and a couple of weeks ago, I did the 10,000 foot climb up Haleakala (Maui), so I get to cross that off the bucket list.

Today I had no excuses. Nice ride, nice tailwind, but looks like a wicked headwind for the ride home.
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Old 05-11-19, 09:57 AM
  #899  
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I stepped outside to check the weather before riding home and noticed a strong smell of barbecue! Someone in the neighborhood was grilling and I could smell if for the first block on my way home.
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Old 05-13-19, 04:16 AM
  #900  
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Excellent weather here in England.

Cycled over and had a nice seaside breakfast with daughter and mum.

here: https://www.google.com/maps/place/So...2!4d-1.0729456

Nice day to be beachside!

And brought the little one into the water for her first experience with the sea as the water temp is OK for this time of year!

Then rode the rest of the way into work


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