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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Road ID Review

Throwback Thursday I mean Wednesday!  This is the very first review I have ever written; I think almost 2 years ago.  Kind of funny to go back and read my old stuff that lead me to where I am now.  I also think it means I should write adverts!!!

If there is one product that my girlfriend would make me review it is my Road ID bracelet.  Luckily for me I am all too happy to do this willingly.  A Road ID is an identification bracelet commonly worn on the wrist (Although there are ankle, Shoe, and Necklace Road IDs) to identify you in the unlikely but possible event that something bad befalls you while exercising.  I am a proud customer who is all too happy to recommend these products sold at that gives my girlfriend a little piece of mind when I am out biking or running.

What makes a Road ID special is they laser engraved, surgical quality stainless steel name plate that attaches to all Road IDs.  There are two forms of name plates; the original and the interactive.  The original gives you 6 lines of 24 characters each to engrave anything you choose but is meant to provide identification for yourself and contact numbers in the event of an accident.  Also, they have a free line to engrave an encouraging statement or even more importantly list a medical condition such as an allergy.  On mine I list my allergy to Penicillin which would be extremely important for medical professionals to know but not something all of my friends know.  But with my Road ID they don’t have to because it can tell doctors for them.  I have an original name plate on my own Road ID.

The Interactive name plate is what I would recommend for anyone with series medical conditions.  Unlike the original nameplate it is not customizable with contact information it is the contact information itself.  On the ID is a Emergency Response Profile website and on the back a Serial & Pin # which allows access to an account you create.  One this ERP you can list contact information, doctor’s phone numbers, medical conditions, and medical history making it all available quickly to Emergency Responders in the event you are hurt and cannot provide it.  Also, this makes your ID customizable to new contact information and change of addresses unlike the original name plate.  The ERP is free for one year with purchase of a Road ID and is $9.99 every year after.

What makes the Road ID a great product for all athletes of all levels is the piece of mind it delivers.  If you are ever in an accident it won’t take hours for first responders to notify your loved ones but minutes and your medical records will be easily accessible to medical staff and that could end up saving your life.  Even when I ride with friends I always wear my Road ID because it makes things easy.  They don’t have to go through my phone trying under panicked conditions to remember my girlfriends name in my contacts list because it is right there on my wrist.  It also eases my girlfriends concerns when I ride far from home and am gone longer than expected because if I had been taken to the hospital for an accident she would have been notified.  My Road ID also provides my immediately important allergic information to first responders and medical professionals.

The most common Road IDs are the Wrist ID Sport which is $19.99 and the Wrist ID Elite at $29.99; however there are several other models also.  The Wrist ID Sport (picture left) is made of elastic webbing that hold the surgical quality name plate that I mentioned before.  The sport has a Velcro closure and is available in black, blue, pink, purple, red, and yellow and in three sizes (S, M, & L).  I personally own a red Wrist ID Sport.  The elites are made of a latex free Silicone compound and have a watch style clasp that makes it fully adjustable.  The Wrist ID Elite (Picture previous paragraph) is available in black, blue, green, orange, pink, purple, red, and yellow.  Both forms of Road ID are 100% water safe (both fresh & saltwater) and are extremely comfortable along with giving you piece of mind.

 So never ride alone when you can have a Road ID with you.  Never know it might save your life someday.

Support This Site

I hoped you enjoyed this review and if you want to get yourself a new piece of sports technology joy please support this site by clicking through on the Amazon referral link below.  It allows you to get an awesome product at a great price (amazon is usually the cheapest) and I get a small percentage back from amazon at no cost what so ever to you..  So to recap: you get a great product and I get to keep writing some way overly detailed reviews...Sounds like a win-win to me!

By the way the below link is not for an Actual Road ID those are only sold on their website

Monday, September 15, 2014

My Week in Runs & Rides in Preperation

This week's runs & rides is a little unique as the week culminates with my "first" triathlon of the season on Sunday.  Yeah tell me about it this year hasn't exactly gone as planned when I'm doing my first triathlon in September.  It will be the CATS Sprint Triathlon in Conway which is about 30 minutes from where I live although the damn thing starts at 7am which is STUPID!!!  I haven't really done much in the way of training for this triathlon other than just going about my usual running and riding; I haven't swam in months!  But only being a sprint triathlon with a 500 yard swim, 15 mile bike, and 5k run it really shouldn't be too bad.  Luckily I don't have much in the way of expectations for the event so as long as I finish in the middle-ish of the pack I will be thrilled.

Brick Workout (Monday)

In preparation for my triathlon this coming Sunday I did one last hard workout which of course had to be a Brick Run & Ride.  My goal was to try and replicate race conditions as closely as possible so I went the whole ten yards: speed laces on the shoes, tri shoes already on the bike, and a legit transition.  Luckily Nicole was generous enough to do my transition area for me by waiting for me behind our building with my shoes and taking my bike upstairs for me.

The brick ride was a 19 mile ride that was about 3 more miles than I had intended to do.  I road that distance in 1:03:38 which comes out to an average speed of 17.9 mph.  I am hoping to do close to 19 mph for the race but honestly given my lack of actual training and being a road bike that might be a bit of a tall ask.  I did lap the iBike Newton+ once I was out of town and could get going then lapped it again at the turnaround point and one more time when I got back in to town.  For the first half out there the iBike recorded 18.9 mph at 196 watts and the back I managed 18.5 mph with 185 watts.  So at least I didn't have a huge drop in power!

For the run I didn't really have a plan other than to try and acclimatize my legs to the bike-run transition.  Luckily the transition has never been a big issue for me and sometimes I actually feel like I run better post ride.  I only did 2 miles for the run which is short of the 5k I'll have to do Sunday but I didn't want to stress my body by actually doing the entire triathlon course.  For the first mile I ran a 8:05/mile pace at 182 bpm.  For the second mile I faded pretty badly to 9:08/mile at 186 bpm.  I'll have to focus at the race to not start to fast and then die so I'll try to hold around 8:30/mile for the entire run.  On the "kinda" bright side I did get a small blister on the top of my right foot for running with no socks but at least now I know where I need to use some Speed Glide.

Small Chainring Work (Tuesday)

After the brick workout on Monday it was time to follow it up with some small chainring riding on Tuesday.  I came to find out that it can actually be really hard/annoying to ride an entire ride in the small chainring.  You just feel like you are putzing around the entire time.  I actually spent more time on the bike on Tuesday than Monday yet I rode significantly less mileage.  But hey the active recovery should help for Sunday

Relax (Wednesday through Saturday)

I though about calling it preparation but let's be honest I have just been kicking my feet up for the last 4 days!  Aside from having to work my "real" job that is.  Sunday is the big day for my first triathlon of the season which is really more an attempt to salvage my race calendar from the grasps of 2 surgeries, a job change, and my laziness.  I will try to post my race recap next week as race results should be posted Sunday night.  Wish me luck!



Wednesday though Saturday

Sorry Strava doesn't have an activity file for this kind of workout

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Going to DC

You know like Washington DC!  Yup so that means I will not be here next week but thanks to the wonders of auto-posting and my ability to stockpile content you incessant need to read my writing will continue unabated. I am actually on a plan as this is posting.  My regular posts will happen on Monday & Wednesday for sure and if I can get just a little bit of writing done while I'm in DC (it is always my plan when I travel but rarely reality) than Friday should be my race recap from the CATS Sprint Triathlon this morning.

Oh so Why am I going to DC?  Well because as my Twitter profile explains I don't like cancer and therefore I volunteer for the American Cancer Society's Cancer Action Network which encourages the government to continue funding lifesaving cancer research.  This Monday through Wednesday is the national summit & lobby day in D.C. so that is why presence will be gracing our nations capitol.
It wasn't exactly the best planning on my part I admit, because I am doing a sprint triathlon at 7am Sunday morning.  I then fly out of Little Rock around 5pm to get to DC around 10pm; flying out of Little Rock is just annoying!  I then get to do all of the cool lobby stuff for a couple of days before flying back home Wednesday afternoon.  Then I have to work for the next 5 days straight because sadly volunteering is not my day job nor is this website, sad I know!  Either way I'll just have to rally through it but if my grasp of English grammar becomes even more tenuous please do not choose that moment to alert me!  Thanks and have a great week!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Kenda Kadence Tires

My tires were starting to show a wee bit of wear (probably should have been replaced months ago) but I finally broke down and got some new ones: Kenda Kadence tires to exact.  I found them on a really good deal and others' reviews seemed to think decently well of them so I figured why not give them a shot.  Being September my season is about to come to an end with only 2 more sprint triathlons on the schedule so the Kadence tires are going to fill in more as a winter training/general riding tire and not a good race tire.  Although they are going to be pressed into duty for those two races.  Now to be clear unlike most of the items I review on this site I went out and purchased the Kadences (I am having a hard time with the plural form here that just sounds BAD) and they were not provided to me by Kenda for the purposes of a review.

The Kenda Kadence tires are a 700x23 tire that utilize a folding edge so they were not a problem to fit onto my rims rather easily.  The casing on the tires is 60 TPI and the tread rubber is a supposed to be different in the center from the sides.  According to Kenda the more durable rubber on the center rubber will decrease wear where as the softer rubber along the sides helps to increase grip in cornering.  Although there is no other sizes than 23mm available Kenda does offer different color bands along the side of the Kadence tire in black, yellow, red, blue or silver.  I am not going to lie I just wanted plain black ones but when you are hunting the bargain bin for winter tires you take what you can get hence mine are silver.  I still don't love it but for on the cheap they work.

The best part about the Kadence tires is that they are Cheap!  Which makes them a perfect winter tire although they do not have a Kevlar puncture resistant layer which is something some riders look for in winter tires.  Luckily, at least in this one occurrence, I live in Arkansas where winters are relatively mild and the extra puncture resistance probably (I say cozy in at home and not stranded on the side of a cold, dark road) aren't necessary.  Either way the Kadence tires will only set you back about $40 for a set of two.  Definitely friendly to the wallet!

So far I have only put about 100 miles on the Kadences (still struggling with plural form) and although it is by no means enough for a review I have been pleasantly surprised at their performance for the value.  I mean they aren't stellar but hey both of them only cost 40 bucks and for that they are performing wonderfully!  I have gone just about 5 psi higher in both tires so 95-100 in the front and 100-110 in the rear, I weight 160 lbs; and with that set up they have accelerated well and had no problems maintaining speed.  We will see how they fair through the next winter months and some times on a trainer before the in depth review later this year.

Support This Site

I hoped you enjoyed this review and if you want to get yourself a new piece of sports technology joy please support this site by clicking through on the Amazon referral link below.  It allows you to get an awesome product at a great price (amazon is usually the cheapest) and I get a small percentage back from amazon at no cost what so ever to you..  So to recap: you get a great product and I get to keep writing some way overly detailed reviews...Sounds like a win-win to me!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

4iiii Shows Off $399 Powe Meter

Production Device Rendering:
4iiii has landed the proverbial first blow of Interbike and the show hasn't even technically kicked off yet, today was just demo day.  Best of all for 4iiii that blow looks like it might have been a haymaker that could leave the rest of the power meter market reeling.  How exactly did they pull that off?  Deliver a working unit with the unheard of price tag of only $399.  They basically just did to Stages (and everyone else) what Stages had originally done to the industry.

It looks like 4iiiii might be the first company to bring power meters truly to the masses; for real this time just disregard the last 3 times that Bicycling Magazine claimed this would be the year for disc brakes, oh I mean power meters.

So what is it considering I haven't even mentioned it's name yet.  This device is the 4iiii Precision!  It is a left only power meter that is user installed on to any "flat" crank.  The Precision can dual broadcast over either ANT+ or Bluetooth 4.0 to compatible head units or smart phones.  The thing works off of one of those coin batteries and each battery is good for 200 hours.  To go further 4iiii claims an accuracy of more than 99% or less than 1% error but 99 percent correct sounds more impressive to me.  As if releasing the cheapest least expensive power meter wasn't enough 4iiii took it one step further by creating a system where you, the user, can install a second pod on the right crank to deliver accurate left/right power for a "complete" picture of your power production for only $350 more.  So that means a complete left-right system for only $749.  No I am most definitely not going to start a discussion on whether left only power meters are as useful as "complete" systems.

I am not going to go too much further into the exact details of the Precision as it is not yet in production although 4iiii have a targeted time frame of the fourth quarter of 2014 as the launch date.  That only gives them 4 more months to make it to market!  But if you would like the very specific details as well as a first impression check out DC Rainmaker's post: 4iiii’s Introduces $399 Power Meter, Precision: My First Ride With It.

Now let us all sit back and see how the other industry players respond in this proverbial arms race but I can tell you for sure the real winners will be us: the consumers.