Tag Archives: biking

Why do we ride?

14 Jan

I was fat, broke and lazy. I’d lost any semblance of high school runner shape, several years of fried food and complete inactivity left me breathless trying to play disc golf with friends. Even attempting to squat to put away dishes in lower cabinets was beginning to become quite uncomfortable. Something in me started to realize that my condition was going to go one way or the other. I was either going to get in shape, or give up. Well, being broke, I bought a cheap fixie online and started riding a bike again. Continue reading

Product Review: Giant Surge

15 Jun

Hello beer cyclist followers! It’s been a long time! How were things for you while I was away? I’m happy to announce that I have finally emerged from the ‘let’s be depressed and hate ourself’ rock that I crawled under like 2 years ago. Whew, about damn time folks!

Anyway, more on that sprinkled into future posts, today I am going to talk to you about shoes! Yes shoes! Don’t worry, it’s apropos to the site, I’m talking about my new cycling shoes.

I was recently given the opportunity to try out a pair of Giant Surge race shoes from my wonderful bike shop, theRecyclist. For the past 3 years, I’d been riding a pair of the most basic Body Geometry shoes from Specialized. Not bad shoes, but I was in for a shock.

It really shouldn’t come as a surprise at this point, but often times when I get new gear I am surprised at how much of a difference it makes. Shoes are most assuredly no exception.

GiantSurge-7

 

The first thing I noticed about these shoes is the fit and the comfort. I kind of expected racing shoes to be uncomfortable, but these fit wonderfully. They way the BOAs are set up makes the tightening of the shoes holistic and balanced. I do have fairly wide feet, so finding shoes that fit me well is difficult when not considering performance. The one thing I have noticed after putting about 500+ miles on these shoes is that my big toes do get scrunched. To the point that I don’t think I would wear these on a century or anything, but I totally think that’s okay, the comfort up to the 50-70 mile range is great for this style of shoe.

GiantSurge-5

Giant is working with a sort of new technology with this shoe, and it’s the part I cant really speak much about as I don’t have much with which to compare. The bar on the bottom is supposed to provide torsional flex and improve pedal efficiency. I can’t say how much of a difference it makes, but the shoes are certainly stiff, yet move enough to not be painful to wear. At high speeds and while racing it’s good to not even think about what’s on my feet. The power transfer compared to my old Body Geometry shoes is staggering.

I would definitely recommend these shoes to other racers. Again, I don’t have a lot to compare, but the performance I’ve experienced is substantial.

GiantSurge-1

 

GiantSurge-4

 

 

My first century

9 Jul

Well, since I finally got a bike with some gears it was about time to ride a century! Since I’ve been welcomed in by all the wonderful group riders here in Appleton, it’s been an interesting ride, pun intended (=

I’ve been given plenty of advice, as well as beers, rides and am getting a really great deal on a wonderful bike (who I have since named Gallafrey by the way). I heard about the ride on one of our weekly rides out to High Cliff State Park and decided it was time. We met at a park and ride at 5:30am, got the bikes packed up and headed up to Menominee for the Menominee River Century.

We had I think about 26 riders on what turned out to be a gorgeous day. We started out at a pretty easy pace as usual, and I even saved us from certain doom! Well, at least from a few miles out of the way. A couple of the signs weren’t exactly clear and we were so happy to be riding that we turned at the loop meant for the finish. Thankfully I was paying attention, and got everyone turned around. It was nice to be able to contribute. The first 60ish miles were pretty much a breeze, I felt beyond great. One of the rest stops had burgers, which was awesome; they also had some wonderful fresh peaches and cookies and everything. Miles 60-80 brought some new loops and scenery, and by around mile 80 I was feeling it. Susan asked me how I was doing and I responded “Well, I feel pretty much like I just biked 80 miles”. The last 15 miles or so are a slightly down hill stretch with a gorgeous tailwind so we picked the speed up to about 23-24 miles per hour.  I even managed to hang with a couple faster guys at about 85 miles in, pulling about 25-27 for a while. My legs blew up, of course, and I fell back to the pack, but it was an encouraging burst!

Even the weather cooperated perfectly, with high 70’s low humidity and perfect sunlight. I managed to build upon the crazy tan lines I’m crafting. Such is the life of a cyclist. Anyway, I felt pretty great overall. I was definitely feeling sore at the end, especially the backside, but it felt awesome to complete my first 100 miles. Around 84 miles I felt like Sam in Lord of the Rings when he tells Frodo, “this is the farthest from home I’ve ever been” (the most miles I had previously ridden in a day).

I’ve got a few longer rides coming up, including the Scenic Shore 150, Race the Lake and the Door County Century, and we’ll see what else pops up over the summer. In the meantime, keep riding and thanks for checking out the blog!

New Local Product, Check it out!

16 Jan

Hello everyone,
so one of the things I wish to do more this year is update my blogs. I am currently working on deciding how my content may be evolving, but in the meantime I wanted to take a moment to try and support the product of an acquaintance of mine.

Brian Davis is a racer here in Appleton, and friend to Mark Desjardin, of group ride fame (= These guys really gave me some great help this past summer when I started getting into cycling. They helped me on the group rides, gave me advice, and were some of the many people who welcomed me to the sport.

Brian is starting a kickstarted to promote his new product, Fix it Sticks, and I just wanted to show my support. This is a really cool tool, and if you bike at all, think about helping a local idea get off the ground!

Go check out the Kickstarter!

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/fixitsticks/fix-it-sticks-a-fantastically-unique-bicycle-multi 

The year is more than half over!

23 Jul

Well,  the year is almost half over, and It’s probably been months since I updated this blog )=

I’ve been busy, working a lot, biking a lot, the dog ate my beer reviews… oh wait, they’re digital. Ha, well here I am. At least for now. I’d like to say that this is the time I get serious and post often, but I can’t for sure.

Anyways, I thought I would just give an update about how the year is going.

For starters, here are the things on my to do list that I have already accomplished:
1. Alicia and I have moved to Appleton.
2. I found a job that lets me have a beard (and ironically decided to go clean-shaven, who saw that coming?)
3. I am really behind, but still sticking with my LAMP seminary classes.
4. I saved up and bought the Lego Tantive IV (and will probably eventually sell to help pay for a bike).
5. I haven’t really reconnected with the old friends I’d hoped to, but I have made new ones!
6. I got healthier, in fact I have lost about 36 lbs so far this year!

So I’d say it’s been a pretty good year so far. A lot better than last year. The most recent event is my completion of the Scenic Shore 150 bike ride. I raised about $350 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and biked 74 miles on saturday and 73 on sunday. It was a gorgeous ride! It was also extremely well supported, with plenty of rest-stops supplying clif bars, fruit, water, gatorade, among other delicious necessities. Along with lunch and dinner there was even a limited craft beer just for the ride! Secnic Shore 150 Ale! The volunteers throughout the whole event were phenomenal. Even when some group put random cones up in the parking lot, and it appeared people were going to have to drive 5 minutes away and take a shuttle back to the school, they figured it out in short order, and let us park super close.

All in all, this ride was one of the coolest things I think I’ve ever done and I am going to do it again next year. In fact, each year they have Scenic Shore Sprinters, anyone who raises at least $,1000.00. Sure I get a freaking sweet jersey for doing it, but I think it would be really cool to be a part of something like that. A lot of people are going to be getting letters next year (=

If anyone wants to ride with me let me know! I’d love to have more company (=

Gathering for the start of the ride.

 

Tents set up at UW Manitowoc

 

Lake Michigan

 

Fields of sunflowers

 

Biking 150 Miles

19 Jun

As some of you probably know, I am doing a bicycling fundraiser this summer. It’s the Scenic Shore 150, a ride from Mequon to Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin. I will ride 75 miles on Saturday July 21st, and 75 more miles on Sunday July 22nd. It’s a fundraising ride for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

In 1999, my wife Alicia lost a cousin to Leukemia, Dana Lichterman. It was a tough loss for her, her and Dana were pretty close. The loss hit the family in general pretty hard, and it prompted my late father-in-law Gary Zipperer to start a relay-for-life team called Dana’s Hikers for Hope. All throughout my relationship with Alicia the Relay was a part of our summers. A couple years ago, we were hit with the news that Gary himself had cancer, a rare form of carcinoid tumor. We ended up having over a year more with Gary than we thought we would, but he passed away in December of 2011. It was a pretty tough time, and still is, but we’re growing, and adjusting and relying on God.

This summer, I have re-discovered how much I love cycling. The freedom of biking has been amazing. I commute to work, do group rides and am even saving up for a road racing bike so I can race. When I saw the pamphlet at Chain Reaction Cyclery in Appleton, I knew that I had to do the ride. I know that it’s a different form of cancer, but it’s a way that I can use my own passion to hopefully bring good to others, and I am really looking forward to it.

In summation, I still need to raise some funds for the ride, by June 29th. Some of you have already donated, and thank you SO much for that, I really appreciate it! For anyone else, I would really appreciate any about you can donate. It does make a difference. If you feel so inclined, you can head to my website here to do an online donation, it’s the quickest and easiest. And thanks again for your support (=   http://wi.2012ss150.llsevent.org/adamkoenig

I’ll be sure to tweet updates when I’m riding so you can keep up with my riding progress!

150 Miles

10 Apr

Well, I’m going to get a bit personal on the bog today. You may or may not know, but my family has been struck by cancer a couple of times. More specifically my wife’s family. In 1999, Alicia’s cousin Dana passed from Leukemia in her lymph nodes. Alicia was really close to her, and it was quite a blow to her whole family. Alicia’s dad, my father-in-law Gary started a Relay-for-Life team in her honor “Dana’s Hikers for Hope”.

A couple of years ago, Gary was diagnosed with cancer. He had a rare form of carcinoid tumor affecting his colon. I don’t know all the details, but we ended up having a full year more with him than was expected, but he did pass this least year, not long before Christmas.

People react to cancer in different ways, forming relays, starting foundations. I have finally found a way to do some small part on my own. This summer I am partaking in the Scenic Shore 150 2012. It’s a 150 mile bike ride over the course of two days, starting in Mequon, WI and ending in Sturgeon Bay, WI. It’s put on by the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. I think it’s cool that I get to do something I love, and raise money to fight something horrible.

I have to register yet, but this is something I’m committing to, and I will have to raise at least $300 in order to participate. I’ll post updates of my training, and if anyone wishes to contribute let me know and I’ll get you the necessary information. Here’s to a whole lot of bike riding (=