Attacked by Hornets


^Attacked by Hornets from James on Vimeo.

This video is of one of the rides Jack and I lead out in Bulverde. It was 50 miles with 2,300 ft. of climbing. There are no mountains here so any climbing that you do has to be out in the Texas hill country. And if you want to do a lot of climbing you have to plan very carefully in order to do as many of the small hills as possible. The link below will show you the map of the ride. The segment in the video is Last Mile to Bullis.

Strava map.

I like this segment. You do a nice steady tempo for a flat half mile then maintain what you can for the second half that goes up hill. Then you’re at the park for refueling for the next stage. It’s a fun ride with good climbing at the end.

This day was beautiful. It was 82 degrees and sunny. We all played hard on the first 20 but I still wanted to open it up a little on this segment. I started at the back so I could get this group in the video as I passed them. The second group had not made the turn onto this segment yet.

As I passed everyone I thought about how much fun I have on these segments. Everyone has their own favorite and they’re spread throughout the route. As I passed people most were lost in their own thoughts. Most were saving their energy for the climbs that were coming up. But some people are like hornets. When you pass them they wake up. Some of them come after you ready to sting!

And that’s what makes it fun. I don’t always know what’s going on behind me when I ride, so it’s cool when I get to see it on the video. What I see is people having fun. People putting the hammer down to make a hella catch! And I wonder, do the people in front of me know how much fun I had trying to catch them?


The 14 mph Ride


The 14 mph Ride from James .

This is a video of an old ride I called The 14 mph Ride. It was a great ride with some good friends and we had a blast. We even had someone who just latched on for the fun. My Garmin said we had a 14 mph average pace. Now, if you judge a ride’s fun factor by the speed this may seem like a boring ride. But is the fun factor directly proportional to your speed? The faster you go the more fun it is?

Click on Strava to see the map.

Part two, On Your Left,  here.

Part three, The Blanco Chase, here.

Remember the first time you rode a bike? You may not have gone over 10 mph but you felt like you were flying! It was effortless compared to walking. It was freedom! Admit it, you were hooked after that. Now, you’re training, eating right, getting the right gear – and maybe even shooting for Strava Segments. Either way you’re probably either looking for a top speed or a high average. Or maybe not either one. Maybe the speed you find fun is the speed at which you can talk to friends while you do something good for your heart. To each, his own, right?

Everyone has a different idea of what speed is fun. Whether it’s a pace of  15 mph or 20, or even 30, it doesn’t matter. Your top speed can be 25 or 50, again it doesn’t matter. It’s all about feeling like you did when you first got a bike. That feeling that you were flying!

So what fires you up? Speed? Distance? Climbing? I don’t know if speed is the most important for you or not but we all know speed is fun.  If you have the right speed, the right distance and the right amount of climbing you’re going to have fun. In the right ratio they can even make for the perfect ride. Add in great weather and good friends and you get another day in paradise.


Saturday Night Home Movies


Lord of the (Chain) Rings Part II from James on Vimeo.

Ok, I’ve played enough with this thing already. I need to post some bike videos that have bikes! I have tons of video of rides here in San Antonio with some great friends that I’m finally going to post.

Strava map.

In fact that was the whole purpose of this blog. I needed some place to collect them all. They’re nothing special, that’s why I call them Home Movies. You know, the kind your family forces you to watch when you would really rather be somewhere else. There’s no exotic scenic views, no death defying jumps, no bloody crashes. It’s really just plain old home movies. It’s just a camera taking pictures on the move without me having to do much. Sounds easy, right?

Well there’s a lot more work involved than I thought. Maybe not as much as with still pictures. Those require an eye for a good shot. I have many friends that take great pictures but I just can’t seem to get the hang of it. There’s an art to it that I just don’t have so this will have to do.

I hope you see yourself in there somewhere. If not, and you were on that ride, just be patient. I’ll post one eventually. Like I’ve said before, it may take me a while and you may not get to see it but your great grand kids are going to love it.


Skateboard Madness



Skateboard Madness from James on Vimeo.

I was out doing a solo ride one day and happened to have my camera with me. It’s mounted on the seat post and aimed back. It was a climbing workout so when you go up you have to come down. I was half way down one of the longer climbs when I noticed something in my rear view mirror. (Yes, I have a rear view mirror damn it. You can make fun of me later.) Anyway, I saw something in front of the car behind me and when i looked further I noticed it was someone on a skateboard!

Strava map.

If you think going 35 mph is fast on a bike, imagine what it feels like on the skateboard. And we have brakes. Watch how he stops at the end. I asked him how fast he’s gone on that thing. Mid 30s in San Antonio and in the 40s in Austin. Pure madness as far as I’m concerned. I does seem fun though, doesn’t it?