more shimano... less everything else, knee update

I don't like to be a comformist, but the more I ride the more I realize Shimano has it right. SRAM might shift better- but the chains break and the cassettes wear too fast. Crank Brothers pedals may be easier to clip into and better for mud but they eat the soles of your shoes, accidentally eject you when you least want them to, and only last 1500 miles or so before the "wings" themselves wear out and they are garbage. Etc. Etc. Plus they know when NOT to offer a product- seems they just stay away from foisting any crap they don't have DOWN to the point of BULLETPROOF onto us. I never knew how good I had it on my 14 year old Marin's stock build until I rode most of this year with SRAM and crank brothers in place of Shimano. Along the same lines, how can crank brothers expect anyone to want to run their $$$ wheelsets, headsets etc. when they can't even make reliable pedals that retail for $140... hell, even the crankbrothers pump that I have broke.

Huge thanks to Dr. Thorson for giving me a second? opinion on my knee. He was able to find a few muscular imbalances and 'core' issues that should be able to be addressed in order to greatly help me out. I also now have a proper referral for as many physical therapy sessions as will be needed. I feel good about having more 'work' to do in order to attack this problem, rather than the crap plan that Mayo foisted on me.

I get that we are in a financial crisis. I get that healthcare costs are soaring out of control. I get that a lot of people who shouldn't be are completely incompetent (I realize this more and more each day I go to work). All that said- the Mayo Clinic's sports medecine "clinic" can't just can't be as bad as it has seemed to me. I'd almost feel better overall if I thought the crap care I've received was just because I am an employee- but I don't think they had any way of knowing. How can anyone just send someone to ONE PT appointment for a condition that could lead to (well, let's just say it could lead to pretty bad things).

I also get that I'm not a professional athlete and they don't really care if I can do what I want to do. Seems most doctors just think it isn't natural to ride a bike or run- doesn't make a lot of sense to me unless it's just because they are so used to seeing the endless parade of overweight, alcoholic, smokers that make up the general population (even of clinic employees). In a way this just motivates me more to get strong enough that the next time I have to deal with them they'll "believe" that I'm serious about this stuff... I (misguidedly I'm sure) feel like if I looked like Lance at the end of the tour that they'd have taken me more seriously.

I'll stop ranting and return to normal thought processes and grammar, NOW

wrapped the bar ends and over the grips on the monocog with bar tape- hoping the larger size diameter and added insulation keeps me warmer through the cold weather and also insulates me from some of the chatter. This has been working great since my ride Sunday. The new, comfortable, location with my hands on the bar ends is reminiscent of my favorite position on the hoods with drop bars.

mon- 120 at 8- extended commute in both directions (35 miles) monocog. Cold riding from 1:30-2:30, saw some weird stuff (blond on the lap of some guy driving a 15 year old lexus down highway 14 at about 15 mph)... got to love having a 50w headlamp that "looks" wherever you do in THAT situation, "umm, hi".

tues- 90m at 5.5 at eastwood- took it easy. Huge thanks to Charly Tri for the new trail sections! Obstacles I/we put in are still in good shape and look solid. Made log ride and rock pile to skinny first tries. Tried to get comfortable on bike salsa- race saturday.

wed- 49m full lap of leb at 8.5ish. Wanted 'race' pace but it was a bit greasy. Fell, hit knee on wood section leading up to the new, easy skinny and took it easy from there out. Racing Ralph's not ideal tires today.

120m at average of 8- rode to douglas trailhead and out to a total of 15 miles very hard, averaged 19 mph on monocog. was trying to attend a group ride that may or may not have happened (never saw anyone). rode last 45-50m of ride at a comfortable/easy pace back through town in the dark.

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