It was actually pleasant on the ride home… sunny skies, 47 degrees. Yesterday it was snowing. Convergence zone, whacky zone.
A friend sent a link describing a 15% drop in tire pressure, and how that’s the optimum tradeoff for comfort without giving up speed. I tried it today for the first time. And loved it. In the morning in particular when it’s still dark on the Burke Gilman, all those hidden roots and bumps play havoc on my hands (particularly my left hand lately), so lower pressure helped give a little ‘suspension’ effect without noticeably slowing my speed. Speaking of which, as I got onto the Burke in LFP I crossed just behind a chap who took off at a very steady clip and I tried to keep up. Kind of nice to have someone motivate. But I could only hold on for a few miles and dropped off toward the latter end of the Sandpoint stretch. This morning was fantastic. Crisp air, but not that needles-on-skin pain of sub freezing. Sunlight coming up nicely toward the end. The final hill of the morning was a grind. Someday I’m going to nail that Fred Hutch hill with an out-of-saddle grunt session. The ride home was even more pleasant. Only had to wear some of the layers from morning, and rode mostly with sunlight right up to the part where I get off the Burke.
Speaking of 15%, it’s interesting how very tiny changes can make a huge difference. I change the cleats in my shoes, for the Speedplay Frogs, so that they were more compliant with the Speedplay instructions, i.e. angling the cleat so the shoe can’t go too far inward. But I found that doing this actually forced me into the ‘end’ of the rotation and to be somewhat locked, and not that ‘icy floor’ feeling from before. I think this, together with a very stressful spinning class on Monday (stressful on the right knee that is) where I used toe clips that essentially force the foot into a fixed position, was not good for the old right knee. I think I may need to get a professional fitting. The hope being that maybe something in my setup isn’t right, rather than something inside my knee. The extent of my fitting for the Long Haul Trucker was “That looks about right” followed by “Surly’s are cool.” So maybe getting a real fitting would be fitting.