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Viddies worth your time

Wearsausage, "M F Bike" (caution: bad words and gestures)

Alex Marco, "The Bike"

Louis Malle, "Vive Le Tour," Part I, 1962

Louis Malle, "Vive Le Tour," Part II, 1962

Rome Olympics cycling recap (in Italian)

Fun With Toys

 

Elevengear Fables

Anaerobian victory at Tuesday Night World Championships courtesy of Anaerobian Wire Services

Paris-Roubaix 2001 by Derek Brouchard-Hall

The Everest Challenge: A Hillclimbing Odyssey by Greg Drake

The Road to Perdition is in Bakersfield by Clint Gaver

125 Miles on a Fixed Gear Bicycle by Joe Sommers

Twice Scrambled Eggs by Rob Schott, M.D.

Olympics Individual Time Trial by Karen Kurreck

Tue Night Crit: The Bull She Flew by Richard Pepper

Tour De France Feminine: 10th stage Saint Louis to Gerardmer by Gianna Roberge

Observations from the Olympic Village by Derek Brouchard-Hall

4Km Team Pursuit at the Sydney Olympics by Derek Brouchard-Hall

Assault on Mt. Mitchell by Rob Schott, M.D.

A Cold Fleche Walonne by Karen Kurreck

Sacramento River Ride by John Elgart

Tour of Tuscany: Time Trial in the Dark by Karen Kurreck

2005 National TT Championships: Supreme Anaerobian Struggle by Rob Schott

2005 State TT Championships: Flying the Camel by Rob Schott

John's Tuesday ride by Rob Schott

LINKS:

Kinetic Shift "Better Health through Technology"

Slowtwitch A great journal for time trialists and multi-sport athletes

http://www.velociti.org/blog/ An engaging Aussie cycling blog. Though not obscene, "Bike Porn" is our favorite feature.

http://www.punkrockcycling.com Punks not dead.

http://bikesnobnyc.blogspot.com/ Simply hilarious.

http://www.nordicgroup.us/bikecoff Methods of getting coffee to the cyclist

http://www.bakfiets-en-meer.nl an American expat's view of cycling from the Netherlands

http://www.velocitynation.com home of "As the Toto Turns"

http://bicycledesign.blogspot.com Thoughts and commentary on bicycle design

http://www.jcepfund.org a dear friend and 11Gear connoisseur's direct aid charity to the children of Ciudad Juarez, Mexico

http://pasocycling.com/ a great resource for cycling on California's central coast

Check back here for free tattoos, more stories, photos, contests.

 

Hard-Won Road Knowledge

Below is a list of solid, time-honored nuggets of knowledge as pertains to riding a bike. Please use common sense of course when pressing any of these tips into service. And if you have any you would like to share please by all means send it to us. If we put it on this page we'll send you a water bottle for your effort. (submission form at bottom of this page).

Hot weather riding: Kids sunscreen seems to work best on the face, as it won't mix with sweat and produce a liquid that just kills your eyes. BTW with a helmet on you won't need so much sunscreen on your forehead anyway. Make sure you get arms, back of the neck, ears, face especially.

A full-zip jersey offers the most flexibility. Lighter colors will absorb less heat than darker ones, so go with a light-colored, full-zip jersey. (such as ...).

Periodically squirt your wrists and hands with cold water to help get the core temperature down. The back of the neck is a good place for a squirt, too.

Consider removing your gloves if it gets really hot, so your hands can vent a little. If you are at a ride's rest stop, try dunking your hands and wrists in the soda bucket's ice water. And when not riding, try to find a cool place or shady spot to get the core temperature down. Bananas are a great hot weather food as the postassium within helps your muscles avoid cramping.

Cold weather riding: A small, cheap disposable heat patch (found in the arthritis section in your pharmacy) applied to the lower back can make all the difference on a cold ride, or can allow you to ride with fewer layers on a cool ride. Also, the same sort of heat pad, placed between top of shoes and top of your toes can change everything.

•A Thermal Bike Mug or other method of keeping hot tea, coffee (chai?) warm while you are riding can really brighten the spirits.

If you are climbing a large mountain on a cool day, try riding up with a fresh long sleeve top in your pocket. At the top of the mountain, replace this top with your sweaty undershirt and your chilly descent will be warmer and free of clamminess.

Embrocation can be a nice substitute for heavier leg warmers or tights. In colder weather apply embrocation and then lock it in with a layer of baby oil (mineral oil).

Knee warmers or knickers must extend 6" both above and below knee to be really effective.

Wool may seem passé in these days of advanced fabrics but is still a wonderful alternative for the cyclist, especially in cold weather. Cotton anything is not a good choice on cool days.

•When out in the cold and wet, using the microwave in the convenience store for your gloves or socks is not such a bad idea, if you can get away with it (or gross out any paying customers).

Eating: Figs may be old school, but a fantastic food source. You can tuck one inside your cheek and get to chewing it when you want. It's easier to gag on a modern energy bar. Mission, Persian, Calmyrna, whatever, though the softer ones are better and fresh figs can be messy.

In colder weather, cream cheese and sliced meat on bread wrapped in aluminum foil is the pro's choice. Or try cream cheese and honey on bread. Generally speaking, eat more, earlier in your ride than you think appropriate.

Drinking: We personally find that near constant sipping is better than periodic gulping, but the important thing is to make sure you stay hydrated, because when you stop sweating it's game over.

•We know it sounds funny, but when you're in a bind, try 3 tablespoons molasses with a pinch of salt and a squeeze of lemon in your bottle if you can't find your favorite sports drink.

•In general, the hotter it is the less sugary your bottles should be.

Riding more comfortably: Yoga can really help the uncomfortable cyclist. Yoga also helps the cyclist generate more power from a more aggressive cycling position. Our favorite poses for the cyclist: Downward dog, Pigeon, Plank, Fish, Yoga Mudra, Plow, Wheel. Consult your yoga studio for further guidance.

One quick way to set an appropriate seat height is to ride around a bit, and get comfortable on your bike. Once comfortable, unclip one foot, and lower that crank arm to its lowest position (6 0'clock), making sure the pedal is flat. Now swing the free leg slowly back and forth over the pedal with the toes up a bit and the leg completely straight. Adequate seat height for most riders will have the heel just lightly brushing the top of the pedal as the leg swings past. (-Mike L.)

Gloves help ameliorate bumps and vibrations from your hands to your shoulders and neck. They also serve as a first line of defense in case of a spill. Also, it helps to change hand positions frequently as you ride.

•Don't commit a Chamois Violation: Cycling shorts are for riding and not lounging, so change out and give your undercarriage a break from the garment you've been sitting on for the past few hours. After your post-ride shower, a brief blow-dry of the area will also give your sitting bits a break from being dark and damp for so long. Lastly, there are many chamois creams etc. on the market but we find that a post ride blow-dry and a little Noxcema™ will get you a long way.

Puncture Avoidance: Thicker tyres in the winter or when it is raining. Consider a tire liner. Even more hardcore is "The System," an old 23c tyre with its bead cut off, inserted between inner tube and 25c tyre. Our New Mexico associates assure us it is the only effective barrier for goathead thorns. Also, we've found that scrupulous avoidance of the f-word seems to help. use puncture instead.

•A $200 fitting session with a professional will be worth more to general cycling enjoyment and efficiency than a new pair of $200 carbon handlebars.

Riding faster: Pumping up your tires to a higher pressure does not guarantee better rolling resistance. When the tyre you are riding says "Max inflate, xxx psi" that does not mean "For best results in all conditions inflate to xxx psi." Tyre inflation pressure should be a consideration of body weight, tyre quality/suppleness, expected road conditions.

The lower you can comfortably get your shoulders and still generate good power – the faster you'll ride, all other things being equal.

•Generally speaking, after about 34 mph, you are better off descending in a tuck than pedaling.

•And when in that tuck, get your knees together and your legs at 3 and 9 o'clock positions. Constantly self-examine to see if there isn't something you can do to become more aero while descending.

Racing: The shorter the race, the longer the warm up. You should warm up significantly more if it's colder. Start with a one-hour warm up for a one-hour race.

Crinkle up your race number and insert each pin through your numbers going through the tyvek twice. Ignore the holes on the corners of the number.

Pin your numbers when you are in the jersey and bent over a bit to mimic your cycling position (it's good luck of course to have someone gorgeous pin your number on). Stretching your jersey over your car's steering wheel and pinning it on yourself is a good, if somewhat less thrilling, alternative.

•If climbing is not your strength and the climb is not terribly long, try "the drift," start toward the front and then drift back through riders – you'll have a better chance of staying with your group that way.

The winning break always seems to go:
1. At the very beginning of the race
2. With just 1 km remaining
3. Right before the hardest climb
4. On the hardest climb
5. On the little climb right after the hardest climb that no one's really thinking about
6. Right when the doomed break is being caught
7. Sneakily, when no one is paying attention, or
8. Brazenly, when everyone is completely throttled

•If you have a teammate in the break please don't block by getting to the front and screwing up the corners for everyone, or by sabotaging the paceline. A better and less negative approach is to sit on the front group and then attack if your guy gets caught. Trust me you'll alienate fewer racers that way, too.

Caffeine is okay to have in a bike race, but not more than a couple cups' worth of coffee, and for your sake no earlier than 1/2 hour before the finish as the possibility of sustaining leg cramps goes up. If the conditions are hot, then 20 minutes before the finish. We feel that starting a long race by downing a couple Red Bulls may be a mistake.

Winning The secrets? Okay I'll tell you. Two simple things: 1. Learn how to spin the big gears really well 2. It's important to be at the front of the race, especially in the closing meters.

Being safe: Rarely has any good come about flipping an aggressive driver the bird.

•Enter in sheriff's number, highway patrol/state trooper's office in your cell phone's speed dial in case you find yourself confronted by reckless or aggressive drivers.

•Enter in your most important person (spouse, parent, etc.) number in your cell phone's speed dial in case you are in some sort of mishap and the authorities need to call someone. Label this entry ICE (In Case of Emergency).

Being a good citizen: If your county has an illegal dumpsite hotline, Enter it into your speed dial also, so you can easily report illegal dumping.

•Every time you ride you are an ambassador for our sport. Therefore please follow the law; it will help starve those who dislike us of fuel for their belligerence.