Cold

I was never one to complain about being too hot, but this is becoming ridiculous. When I got back from my long ride today I had to put on a toque, because the ambient temperature in my apartment, along with my fleece sweater, wasn’t cutting it. I’m finding that when I cool down from a ride, I cool way down and have a lot of trouble maintaining an adequate body temperature.
It wouldn’t be so bad, if it was only happening during my cool down, but it happens when I take a break during my ride as well. I took about a 2 minute break today to grab some water and a photo, and when I got back on my bike it took me several minutes to warm back up. My muscles were fine, it was my core temperature that was the problem.
Unfortunately I am not a quiet cold person. I expressed my discomfort with the temperature quite audibly, much to the displeasure of the people sharing the waterfront path with me.
Here’s hoping that this summer is nice and warm, because I don’t want to have to whine and whinge my way across the country.

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Gear

Oh man do I love bike shorts. I did not realize how amazing they are until I got them. I went to my new favourite store, Mountain Equipment Coop (MEC), and got a ton of awesome gear, like a rack and panniers and a bike computer. I even managed to install everything myself (with the help of google).
Unfortunately, the bike computer, which records my speed and how far I went, stopped working after about 45 kilometres. I suspect I’ve done something wrong, but I can’t figure out what the problem is – it was working just fine before! That’s just another problem I’m hoping Bike Pirates will be able to help me with. They had better be magical and patient.
My next trip to MEC will be for my tent, sleeping bag, stove, and a big knife. I’m mostly excited about the big knife, which will be used primarily for food preparation, and secondly for the sake if carrying around a big knife like Crocodile Dundee.

Wind

I did a 90 kilometre ride today, from my place in Toronto to my mom’s house in Oakville. I was hoping it wouldn’t be too bad, since I did about 80km on Thursday. The difference is that on Thursday there wasn’t so much wind. I had read about people complaining about cycling across the prairies and battling the wind… But I never really understood how much it could affect a ride until today.
The route I took was mostly along the waterfront of Lake Ontario. It was fine in the morning, but on my way back in the afternoon it was ridiculously windy. I could feel my bike being pushed to the side by the wind, which was probably not helped by my new pannier bags.
At the end of my ride I started having some technical difficulties, so I think I will be paying a visit to Bike Pirates tomorrow afternoon. I was hoping to go to their women’s day on Sunday, but I don’t think my bike will make it through a long ride unless I pay them a visit. Hopefully they will teach me some cool new things!

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Biking across Canada

I am going to cycle across Canada. By myself. On a bicycle.
When I tell people this, I get a couple of different reactions. Some people are genuinely very happy an excited about this. Some people are shocked and displeased and them hide it pretty well with a compliment like “that’s very brave of you”. My favourite reaction so far is from a friend of a friend who immediately looked at me and said, “damn, you must have great legs”.
Once they’re over the initial shock, my friends asked me about the details of my trip. Guaranteed, the answers are as follows: I have a route, I will be camping and staying in hostels, I fly to Vancouver on May 22 and cycle all the way to the east coast. And yes, I am very excited about this trip.
I first decided to do this trip a couple of years ago when I was travelling around Europe and Australia. I met a girl from china who had been to more places in Canada than I had. It was then that I decided to see my own country, and that the best way to see Canada would be via bicycle.
So I left bought a bike (a trek hybrid), quit my office job, and am now training for my trek. I’ve told a bunch of people that I will be writing a blog, so I will be doing my best to write updates and keep in touch with everyone.