Issue No. 771 - Since 2001! - July 27, 2017    PDF


Produced every Thursday by RBR Publishing Co. Inc. for roadies around the world. ISSN 1536-4143

Your Weekly Dose of the Best in How-To Road Cycling Info


Oregon Tax on Bicycles May Signal New Trend

Editor's Note: RBR contributor Stan Purdum (don't miss Stan's article "Days of Adventure" in today's issue) forwarded a link to an article on the League of American Bicyclists website that should be of interest to all of us. It details Oregon's recently passed tax on new bicycles. Beyond that, and noting another example or two of jurisdictions that tax or otherwise require a paid registration for bikes, the article delves into a long explanation of why we should beware "user fees" – especially as means to pay for cycling infrastructure. 

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Breakfast – What to Eat and When, Part 2

By Coach John Hughes  RBR Premium Member Steve Fenn wrote us recently, asking a series of great questions that apply to all roadies. The gist of his line of questions is, What should you eat before you go for a big ride or event? The answers to Steve's series of questions lie in the context of your nutrition both before and during a ride. Rather than thinking of a bolus of calories at 0-dark-30, think of a flow of calories starting a week before and continuing through to the end of the event. Coach John Hughes provides detailed nutritional advice both last week and this week to answer Steve's salient questions.

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Meld Body-Customized Road Bike Saddle

By John Marsh  Meld Saddles got my nod as Best of Show at last fall's Interbike, the annual bicycle industry showcase for everything related to cycling. The company makes custom saddles in its California factory using U.S.-sourced materials, a novel process and plenty of computing power. Meld is the brainchild of computer science Ph.D. Ethan Ee, a former Google employee who has worked at various startups as well. Meld offers direct-marketed custom saddles built to your specific physical "impression" and inputs you add on the company website to help determine the shape and final attributes of the saddle.

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Bike Maintenance 101, Part 1

By Jim Langley  I got my first good 10-speed in the summer of 1971. I remember the feeling I had when I got it home. No, not the excitement and anticipation of riding, but the feeling of dread, as I slowly realized I didn’t know a blasted thing about how to take care of it. Sure, the nice shop guy showed me how to operate the brakes and shifting. I think he even showed me how to remove the front quick-release wheel so that I could stuff it in my grandmother’s Chevy and get it home (I didn’t have my license yet). But I didn’t learn any of the basics of caring for a road bike until I purchased Anybody’s Bike Book and read up on it.

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Days of Adventure on the Bike

By Stan Purdum  “Adventure,” said the prolific writer, Louis L’Amour, “is nothing but a romantic name for trouble.” Having spent his young manhood years knocking about the oceans on tramp steamers, hobo-ing the West on freight trains, working as a circus roustabout and once making a desperate flight out of the Mohave Desert on foot, L’Amour was flush with experiences to back up his remark. Of the forced march out of the Mohave, he wrote, “It is better to sit in comfort with a cold drink at hand and read the tale than to actually walk out of the Mohave Desert as I did.” At times, bicycle tourists might argue the point.

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How Should I Train to Ride Haute Route Ventoux?

I am interested in learning more about training for climbing. I live near Newark, Delaware, and am preparing for Haute Route Ventoux. Coach Fred Matheny Replies: Congrats on your upcoming ride in France. Always wanted to do that route myself. As for the training for such a ride, there are a number of good studies showing that short, hard efforts like the ones you can do on the short hills of Delaware also improve all physiological abilities below that intensity. So doing 30-second efforts all-out will also improve your 30-minute power at or slightly higher than your lactate threshold.

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How Exercise Helps Prevent Heart Attacks

By Gabe Mirkin, M.D.  Two recent breakthrough studies give the best explanation yet of how exercise helps to prevent heart attacks. Competitive older endurance athletes may have more plaques in their arteries than non-exercisers, but they have the type of plaques that are far less likely to break off and cause heart attacks (Circulation, April 27, 2017;136:138-148; May 2, 2017;136:126-137). The studies showed that competitive master athletes have:

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