Thursday, May 26, 2011

What takes me to the finish line - Bike Edition

There is no single way to fuel or prepare for an Ironman, or let alone any race so please take what you can from this post as the last thing you want to do is derail your own preparation by thinking you are off base with the equipment or product you use.  In getting ready for a race there is always something you can look at to improve so I'll go over most of the things that I feel made my race day a better experience and why.

Here we go!

Bike - Cevelo P2 - Ultegra
Wheels - Williams Cycling - Wheel System 85
Computer/Power Meter - CycleOps Joule 2.0 and Power Tap PRO+
Saddle - ISM Adamo Racing Saddle
Shoes - Pearl Izumi Tri Fly III
Helmet - Rudy Project - In the market for a new one, but have a big noggin that is hard to fit.  Let me know what you like.

The Cervelo P2 was the best fit for my 6'5" body.  Nothing else was as comfortable and smooth when I tried it.  At around $2,500 it was the best bang for the buck when I got it tw years ago as well, and there hasn't been anything else in the price range (except maybe a Speed Concept $$$$) that really turned my head since then.  Reviews say it has incredible straight ahead speed, and I agree, but they also fault it a little for handling which I disagree with.

The Williams wheels are 85 mm deep (4 mm deeper than a Zipp 808) and they have worked flawlessly so far this year.  At Wildflower with 20-30 mph crosswinds, there was some "fun" moments, but that was expected.  In Texas the 10-20 mph winds didn't grab the wheel very much, and the second half of the course was into a headwind which the wheels cut through as I passed much of the field.  At half the price of other aero wheel-sets, I can't believe I was the only sporting these on the course.

My computer and power meter are my newest best friends.  Heart rate isn't quite enough to be able to control the effort put in during the bike, and spikes in effort can just kill your run.  The CycleOps computer and power meter keep my effort smooth and make sure I am on the right track on the bike.  The biggest benefits I've found are in varied terrain where your head would think you are on target because your speed is where it should be, but because of hills or wind you are actually putting too much or too little effort and not reaching your potential.  The watts never lie.

Guys have to protect your junk.  That is the endless battle riding a bike.  While the ISM saddles, with their double nose doesn't look like it would protect a guy, it does a very good job of keeping the nether regions safe from harm.  When riding over 100 miles there will always be some soreness down there, it was drastically improved when I moved to this saddle and I'll don't see any other seat on my bike in the near future.

The Pearl Izumi shoes are great.  They don't break the bank, and are are comfortable for the whole ride.  They have good ventilation with the open construction too.  I wear them with socks, but without would be great with their lined upper. They work with SPD and Look pedals.  I use Look Keo's, but will probably change these out for something better soon.


  1. Good read...and hey, a girls gotta protect their junk too :) I just got the ISM Adamo after 10 different saddle's hoping it works b/c I've been DYING on rides over 40 miles!!! Oh, love my Cervelo as well!! :)

  2. Brett, I just purchased some Williams Wheels, 58 mm on front, and 85 on back. Doing IM Texas next month. I sent a FB friend request. I have some questions. Hope you respond.