5 Flats in 2 Weeks

This entire year is circling the drain.  I'm not sure what I did, but I've got some bad karma going on.  I need to figure this out and make things right with the gods so I can end my streak of bad luck.

My year started great.  My training was going really well and I was looking forward to a great season of triathlon.  Then I got injured.  I tried to work through it for a while, but eventually realized it was serious and went to the doc.  It turns out it was a torn tendon (with two others that are damaged) so I can't run but the doc told me to bike all I want.  So that's what I've been doing.  Working on my bike fitness....or trying to.

Every key ride I do lately ends the same way....flat tire.  It started with 3 flats on my training wheels.  One during my long ride with a friend/GearGrinder teammate and two more during a long tempo ride (my key workouts for half ironmans - and I have one coming up in 4 weeks - is long tempo rides).  On one ride I was supposed to get in 2.5 hours of tempo, but had to call for a ride at the 2 hour mark because I was out of tubes.  I got in some hard work, but not what was planned.

It turns out there's a sharp spot of excess welding on the inside of the rim of my training wheels that's creating the flats.  My rim tape must have slid over a little and exposed it.  I was actually happy to find that.  Now I just need to file it and sand it and I'm back in business.  

Then I headed out last Thursday for the practice TTs and only made it a mile from home before getting a flat, this time on my race wheels.  I was crunched for time and didn't want to screw around with valve extenders so I called Courtney (again) to pick me up.  Then I grabbed my road bike and headed out for the TT.  I made it just in time.  They were about to line up as I pulled up.  This was my first time doing a time trial on a road bike, and it's no fun.  I prefer road bikes to time trial bikes, but not for time trialing.  I was uncomfortable and slow and didn't have much fun despite the weather being really nice.  But I did get in a good workout so I suppose it wasn't all bad.

It turns out it was a rim tape problem again. This time my rim tape was bunched up and it exposed one of the spoke holes and that's what popped my tube.  New rim tape installed and my wheels are good to go again.

Tonight I figured I'd make up for last week's tempo ride.  I haven't gotten my training wheels fixed yet so I decided to run my race wheels.  I had a 60 mile out and back ride planned.  A short warm up, then tempo the whole way.  It should be around 2.5 hours of tempo. I was feeling good and my power was really close to where I wanted it.  A couple of watts low, but not bad.  I had an hour to go, was pushing hard and my watts were building.  I had plenty of time to hit my goal watts, and was confident I would.  

Then I hit something sharp, a rock perhaps, and blew out my front tire.  This time I slashed the tire and couldn't repair it.  I had to call Courtney one more time for a ride.  This time I was at mile 40 of 60 so I was stranded 20 miles from home.  I only got in 90 minutes of tempo.  The temp was dropping, the sun was setting and I wasn't dressed very warm because it was supposed to be a hard ride.  I stood on the side of the road shivering for 30 minutes waiting for my ride. Not what I had planned.

The past few years my training has gone really well, so I'm extremely frustrated with how this year is going.  I've always had my set backs - bad workouts, aches and pains, etc.  Everyone does, but this year I feel like I can't catch a break.  It's really frustrating to have good workouts cut short.  I have an easier time dealing with workouts being cut short because I'm too tired and can't hold my watts.  

So this year isn't going well and I wish I could start all over.  My fitness is not where I want it to be and I have a half ironman in MN coming up in 4 weeks.  Right now, I'm not even positive I can do the race, but I'm hopeful.  

At the very least I should be able to swim/bike.  




Mingus Jerry said...

Hopefully, karma is just bunching up all your flats for the year in one small stretch and from here on out you'll be flat free.

Matthew Smith said...

Flats suck! I hope you don't keep gettings those babies, because they really are a pain in the neck. Good luck!