TLDR – Words and stuff about riding my bike to work for a week and some change. Started writing on the first day in, and added to it here and there for a bit
Rode into work today with the new bike for the first time. Took me 39 minutes from the time I pulled the bike out of the Shed to the time I checked my watch before opening the bike locker at work. Saved me about 10-20 minutes compared to riding my other bike. The big savings was not the assist but the ability to go faster. The last bike topped out at about 35Kph on the downhill vs the new bike topping out around 50Kph
The 1800€ bike vs the 50€ bike is an extreme difference. One I’ve never been able to understand until now. It would baffle me to see friends purchase bikes costing 4 digits when you could get one for 2-3 digits that was, in my mind, the same thing. Little did I know the difference is like driving a luxury car compared to driving a 90’s Suzuki samurai still on the road today. The new bike is better in many ways:
- Stops better, with hydraulic disc brakes vs cable disc brakes.
- Starts better with the electric assist. – I was beating cars off the line from some stop lights. Not that they knew we were racing, but we were.
- Shifting gears is much simpler, not only via the flip paddle controls vs the handle spin things but the shift itself is cleaner than the cheap bike. The Motor actually backs off a bit during the shift to make the shift smoother
- The ride position is much more comfortable for me. Even though both bikes have similar geometry.
The Electric assist speed limit of 25Kph is a bit annoying right now. Top speed of the bike appears to be around 50Kph. At least that is where pedaling in top gear seemed to stop adding torque at all. My comfortable riding speed was about 26-29Kph. Meaning most of the ride to and from work is unassisted. Which is not a bad thing, I logiced buying this bike on the effort it takes me to go uphill on the way home, not because ridding on flat is too hard. Going to make the choice next week to “fix” the speed limit or not.
John made the best argument to “fix” the speed limit. His argument is that right now when it is warm and dry speed and effort do not matter. Come winter when it is 0 out and raining I’m going to want all the help I can get ridding to work. – Going to stick it out until the end of summer and see where I am at leg-wise and hope it does not matter anymore.
Scratch that, I made it one cold raining miserable day home and ordered the speed limit removal tool. Ridding home in sideways rain, with the wind blowing you backward, when it’s two degrees C out is not fun. I’ve done it a few times now and would love the extra power.
Being frugal and always working towards maximum financial extraction from my employer. I’ve decided charging the bike at work is a good idea. The bike was at about 80% charge the first morning after arriving at work. It took about 2 hours before the green charging light stopped blinking indicating the battery is fully charged. Plenty of time to charge at work. Bonus, walking around with a battery brick that can double as a weapon is never a bad idea, right?
I rode into work, home, then back to work, about 45k running the battery down to 2 out of five bars on the charge indicator. Plugged the battery in at 0800, and used the charge controller as a hand warming most of the morning. By about noon the battery was fully charged and had stopped charging – about 4 hours to go from 30-40% charge to 100% charge. Which seems in line with the claimed efficiency from the website
Modern Bosch lithium-ion batteries do not suffer from memory effect or self-discharge issues. Your battery will charge to 50% in about 2 hours, depending on the charger and PowerPack.
Ridding – and Eating
I’ve been riding to work for about two weeks now. I’ll be riding in four days a week, Monday through Thursday. Planning on taking Friday off ridding as a work from home. Using the CycleMeter app installed on my phone to track the rides it takes about 40 minutes both directions and burns between 500-700 calories each way. I’m calling it 80 minutes and 800 calories a day for tracking purposes.
Coming into work I’m riding under fast. I get up around 0500 and leave the house before 0530. There is no time to eat in there to add any energy to my body, and riding without eating makes for more better fat loss, according to the interwebs, and my thinking. Then I’m carrying that fast on until lunchtime doing an 18/6 intermittent fasting setup. Limiting food intake to only take place between noon and six pm.
The dull pain in my legs has not gone away since I started riding to work a few weeks ago. Climbing the stairs after I get home is still a challenge where I think my legs could give out at any minute. But, the dull pain is starting to be less dull. The work out is nice, I arrive home and want to remove my shirt, ring it out, and let the sweat on my body air dry.
Sweat whatever, the fun part is the nice high from a good work out; feels amazing after the ride is over and I arrive work or arrive home. Loving the runners high and slight feelings of improvement. Will be fun to track my rides and see the difference between now and two or three months in the future. How much time can I shave off of the rides over the months to come, and how much larger my legs end up.
The view on the way in has so far been dark. The view on the way home for the part of the ride along the water has been gorgeous. We had a freak wind hail storm this week that almost blew me over while crossing a bridge. I got off the bike and walked it across the bridge.
Parking at work is in a secure shed filled with bikes watched by cameras. Being a bit paranoid I still lock the bike up in the shed. The sheds come in pairs, and every other shed has a repair station with a bike stand, tools attached via retractable cables, and an air pump. You have to barge into and out of the shed, which is nice from a secure view, but it sure is annoying getting in and out with a bike.
Already had a flat tire on the way home. About 2k from home on the steepest of the uphill my rear end started to smoosh around a bit. Looking down I could see the tire was flat. I hopped off the bike and looked for a hole but was not able to find one. Ended up walking the bike home not wanting to ride on a flat and ruin the tire. The tires looked like they had a bead on them and might be tubeless. Not having all of the tools I removed the tire from the bike, put it on my bike and took it to the bike shop
Maddex and I rode down to Fitz cycles with our scooters stopping at our usual park. The guy behind the counter said we could leave it and pick it up in the morning. The repair tech behind the counter herd me needing a repair and offered to do it on the spot. Sure would love that. 10 minutes later he gave me the repaired tire and showed me the tiny hole in the tube. Bought a spare tube while we were and the kit I need to replace a tire. Next time I’ll try on the side of the road.