Sunday, November 30, 2014

Bonding with "the Bat" (aka The Sweet Ride)

So, the Sweet Ride (the Cervelo) has an official name - the Bat.  When I first had my eye on the Quintana Roo and a few other bikes, a part of the appeal, other than the price, was the color - black.  As much as I've liked my Trek, I haven't loved a white bike.  I realize that this is the most insignificant detail when it comes to purchasing and owning a bike, but I really liked the idea of a black bike, in part because I already had a name that I thought would stick - the Bat.  But then, I ditched the idea of the QR and opted for yet another white bike because of minor things like fit.  So, I considered other names for it, but somehow, once I started riding the Cervelo, the Bat seemed even more accurate because of how compact I feel when I ride.  So, the name has stuck.  It's even better in Spanish and is actually one of my favorite words - Murci√©lago. Also, there ARE albino bats and such a thing as an Honduran white bat, so maybe "the White Bat" isn't too silly.

This is not a real bat.  Source.

Anyway, the Bat and I have been spending some quality time together, and things have improved since our first outing (meaning - I haven't fallen).  However...  I realize that I sound like a broken record, but it is taking me a while to get used to everything about this bike.  I've adjusted, more or less, to the shifters being at the end of the bars, and the new saddle has greatly improved my riding experience, but it's still hard for me to get out and ride more than 2 hours at this point.  I think that I've been accustomed to a much more comfortable ride, one that let me ride in several different positions and to ride more upright, obviously.  With the Bat, it's hard to sustain any position other than aero (at this point), and I'm not super strong in aero.  My final point is that I don't think that I'm a faster cyclist on the bike even though everyone else whose blog I've ever read has raved about how they suddenly became speed demons with their tri bike (the Internet lies!).  So, I envisioned suddenly riding 1-2 mph faster without much effort, and I haven't found that to be the case.  Mind you, I'm comparing my current times to those from May and June, when I was actually in decent cycling shape.  Okay, maybe that's an unfair comparison?
So, the adjustment period continues.  As does finding all of the right 'gear' - hydration system/s, bento box, places to put/carry my tubes and other necessities.  I haven't been able to simply swap everything that I had for my Trek, and I continue to shop around to find the stuff that works for me and for the bike.

I definitely don't mean to complain.  After all, I've actually been putting in time in the saddle since this purchase, so it's motivated me to get back some of my bike fitness!

And you can see how different my fit is.  Michael now says that when I'm riding the Trek it looks as if I'm on a carriage.

We'll see whether or not I'm a faster cyclist with more time on the Bat, but I have noticed a difference on the run.  While I'm not running tons of miles off the bike at this point, I am faster, and not because of my fabulous run fitness these days.  It still feels just as hard to run off the bike, especially the first mile, but when I look down at my pace, it's faster than I would expect.  So, this might be a very exciting development - but I'd better learn to ride long on the Bat.


erin said...

Ha! Not all lies on the internet :) I'm definitely faster on my tri bike vs. my Madone. Give it some more time to adjust, and you'll notice a difference. When I get on my road bike now, it feels like I'm crawling and like I have to work even harder to maintain 20mph or faster. Holding that on my tri bike uses much less energy. It also took me months to adjust to aero positioning… anything over ~2.5 hours gave me a splitting headache. Anyway, glad to read you're getting acquainted with the Bat (fun name BTW!)! Have a great weekend!

mindful mule said...

Consider looking up from your full aero tuck once in a while rather the relying solely on sonar…

Kristina said...

Erin- Thank you for the feedback about speed and also about getting used to it. I realize that I'm not in awesome cycling shape right now anyway, so both of those are probably impacted by my lack of fitness.

Rob - Can you imagine if you relied on sonar for biking?! And I'm definitely out of the aero tuck quite often!