Wednesday, April 1


I realize the timing of this post couldn't be more wrong, being that it's April 1st, but I signed up for STRAVA last Thursday.

Yes, I selected the unfortunate screen name "Colt Seavers" when I signed up.  I was under pressure to get it done and had just seen Stevil's profile pic on Facebook minutes before.

And I didn't get around to changing it until Barnabas Froystad pointed out the lack of originality on STRAVA.

So anyways, now I'm Teh Dikn├╝s.

Part tribute to the spelling challenged commenters on Pink Bike, part tribute to the Sveness (which I've never watched because why would I?), and part my desire to have an umlaut.

Anyways, why would I sign up for STRAVA?

Because I have a terrible memory when it comes to remembering routes.

I used to ride this twelve mile loop in the neighborhoods directly to the south of my house.  For reasons that are way too involved and cumbersome to mention, I stopped doing the route years ago.  Recently, I found new motivation to rediscover it.  My hopes are to do a ride before work that doesn't have the potential to waste 5-10 minutes waiting at traffic lights and to ride without a 15lb+ messenger bag on my back at least part of the day...

but I need a predictable route that allows me to get back in my door before 8:25AM so I can grab my bag, drop unwanted clothes, and make the thirty minute commute to work in order to punch an actual time clock type device before 9:00AM.

So I downloaded STRAVA, as opposed to scribbling an annotated map, so I could more readily identify the route and get it committed to memory.  I also wanted to get a decent grasp on the time it takes, options to add miles, and approximate distance.  I'm pretty sure there's a better app out there for what I'm trying to do, but STRAVA will do.

My first attempt was yesterday.  I'm pretty sure I failed at STRAVA'ing like a champ, as I turned around at one point to retrieve some lost sunglasses.

They were not Oakleys, so probably not worth picking up, aside the the removal of litter from the road.

I also missed three turns.

A. I ended up in a cul-de-sac.

B. I went right when I shoulda went left.

C. I totally missed that there was a turn coming up, couldn't get my tarck bike slowed down, and ended up entering the country club.

Yes, there is a purposeful out-and-back on the route (the balloon string on the right).  It's a nice climb with a bike lane, so I do it.

There's also a STRAVA segment on my route:

I was surprised someone made this molehill into a "segment."  Yes, I'm very new to STRAVA (as I figured out later, people will STRAVA anything).

I was also surprised to see some familiar names in there.  My neighbor across the street, Adam, and my Faster Mustache teammate, Paw Cunningham.

Anyways, I'm not surprised by the fastest time.  The climb starts in a small valley, and you can really crank into it.  I am surprised that no one has STRAVA'ed it the other way, as you can crank (a road bike) into it and get over 40mph by the time you hit the bottom.

Knowing that it's a "segment' and that I'll probably never have to do my route with STRAVA again (I hope), maybe I shouldn't have pulled out my phone to look at an email on the climb being that my miserable performance is now documented...

but I didn't know, and I guess that's how STRAVA works.  A game of Double Dog Dare everywhere you go on a bike.  Like World of Warcraft, just sweatier... but just as silly.

I can see where one with too much time on their hands and a competitive side could get addicted.  When I saw the notification pop up, it told me I had the third fastest time this year.  First place?  Local roadie and commander in chief at Black Bear Adventures, Paul Wood.

But then, when I looked it up to verify my info this morning, it appears he's been knocked off the leader board just yesterday by a 23 year old woman (thanks, Facebook, for helping me with accessing Emily's personal info).

So the gauntlet gets thrown down in an "uh-oh" email and the game commences.

I can see how one could get some external motivation from all this virtual competition.  I can also see how I'm not one of them.

I'll be glad when I get this route totally memorized again.  With all the twists, turns, ups and downs...

it almost makes riding a bike on the road fun.

BTW: Does anybody actually start their STRAVA routes from their house, because if they do, that just seems like a TRBL idea.

Extra BTW: Someone just PM'ed me with the whole "privacy setting" thing that basically hides your house.  SCIENCE!


Chris said...

On the rare occasion that a sudden severe thunderstorm pops up with enough force to influence me to bushwack my way out of a local trail system, I make the direct route into a segment and name it "New Jump Line" or "Bermalicious" or similar. Joy reflecting on those that used Segment Explorer and are out trying to find them.

Anonymous said...

Dude, it is soooooo obvious that you have been secretly dieing to test yourself against others via Strava. Quit trying to down play it by talking shit about how stupid Strava is. Its all in the name of fun so go out there and have some of it. I personally have a need to do intervals but am not an interval for the sake of intervals type of guy but going for segments on Strava helps me get it done. Plus when I surpass one of my buddies I can take a screenshot of it and post it on their Facebook pages telling their bitch asses to get some. :)

BigRedClydesdale said...

Strava is a lot like World of Warcraft. But minus being a fatass. :D

You can set a "privacy zone" around your neighbourhood so people won't know specifically where you live.