23 June 2008

Mountain Biking Observations Revisited

So a weird thing happens, in my opinion anyway, when you ride road and trail in the same day. First off it's, like, two entirely different worlds. On a mountain bike you could all but build something while riding. Pull out bottles, drink, make a nice steak, eat it with a fork and knife, you're just pretty well good to go. It seems as though nothing could possibly throw off your balance. In direct contrast is the road machine. I have been spending a substantially greater amount of time on said mountain bike than the roadie. I felt every bump, every piece of raised asphalt on the path, every twig that was blown off in last nights storm no matter how small and insignificant.
Also, I've come to the conclusion that I am completely idiotic in my expectations of what I can and can't do on a mountain bike. You see, I'm riding at about an average of 16+ MPH on the road. Thats to say 16.2, 16.8, 16.4 etc. depending on where it is I'm riding.
Therefore I'd say it is safe to come to the following conclusion: My max effort right now on the road will produce a ride averaging at 16-17 MPH.
My thought process is as such: If I can do 16 MPH or slightly better on the road, SURELY I could do 16 or so on the trails, right?
Yeah, not so much. I have a friend of mine that I spoke with and said how I'm unhappy how I don't feel as though I'm riding to my full potential, I don't think I'm hitting anything near 15 MPH in the dirt. He laughed and asked if I'm riding trails or strictly downhill. I didn't appreciate it, and we moved on from there. So, is it then safe to say that I am insane if I think I could duplicate my efforts on the road on a trail? Is it just naturally (that much) slower?
Another thing I think I'm noticing is this: I cannot get my road tires hard enough, let alone too hard. On the flip side, when I max out the air on my mountain bike I feel like I have absolutely no traction whatsoever. I think it has something to do with what Ron over at Cozy Beehive was talking about with rolling resistance, stating that a wide tire at low pressure will roll faster than a narrow tire at high. Hmmpf. I need some engineering courses to figure this out.
Bottom line, and all that I know, is that I rode more today than I have in the last two weeks, and man did it feel good.

1 comment:

andy said...

holy cow. there's no way to go as fast on the trail as you can on the road. esp if there's trees involved. lol.

i hope your mtb ride was better than mine today. literally 30 seconds after thinking, "i'm going to try and complete this lap without putting a foot down," my foot/pedal hit a root and threw me off the bike into the weeds. i got up, fairly shaken and wondering wtf just happened.

other than my handlebar trying to take a core sample out of my leg and putting a very nice wobble in my front wheel (thank God for disc brakes...rim brakes would have ended the ride) i was ok.

that's today's ride. yesterday's gave me this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vMFU-LZOAvw