Cheap Indoor Virtual Training Option


A snapshot of the virtual world of Zwift Island.

I know for most of the hardcore MIT’ers out there, indoor training season never really arrives. Less hardcore riders, however, might be interested in exploring the virtual training world offered by Zwift. Essentially, it allows you to view your effort and progress as you compete against the other online riders zipping around the virtual world of Zwift Island. Any indoor trainer works, but you’ll need a power meter and ANT+, or bluetooth, supported cadence sensor and hrm.  Interested? Check it out.

Hwy 12’s Getting Paved Shoulders?


edited road by stanne

Here’s what it could look like in the near future around Steinbach. 15 feet of asphalty goodness  will transform Hwy 12 from a very dangerous, poor pavement ride into a route that opens up some great loop options. Ghost trucks, however, could still pose a hazard…

When construction began this past summer on improvements to Hwy. 12 north of Steinbach, I had high hopes that the road renewal would include paved shoulders. It looks to me, judging by this photo I took about a month ago, that it will. My understanding is that they’ll eventually repave it all the way to Steinbach. Nice. Road riding around here is looking up. Now if only we could get paved shoulders to La Broquerie.

Bad Time for a Burger?

Picture quality really doesn't do this meal justice. My phone lens is totally scratched...

The picture quality really doesn’t do this meal justice. My phone lens is totally scratched…

Is there ever really a bad time to order a bacon cheeseburger and fries? That’s what I was thinking when Saturday’s MIT ride rolled into Richer and the Cat Sass Tavern for the mid-ride food stop at just around 9:30am. To a man, all of the guys ended up ordering the “Provencher“, a typical, and delicious, breakfast special that the menu claims is a house favourite consisting of meat, eggs, hashbrowns and toast. Me? I boldly ordered the “Nor’wester Burger“, a local favourite – I know that’s true because it says so in the menu. In this case, I don’t doubt it as I consider myself a pretty good judge of a great burger, and I’d say this one ranks in the top 5 I’ve eaten anywhere, even out ranking VJ’s in Winnipeg. The homemade fries were also excellent. So if you’re ever in the neighbourhood, forget Gepetto’s down the road and try out the “Nor’wester”.

Dog Days of Summer

We’re officially in the dog days of summer. That time of year when you’re getting pretty weary of the roads close to home. Those same roads you were dying to ride back in April when the temperature was 4C and the wind out of the North made bundling up and wearing booties a necessity. Now there’s no thought given to what to wear. It’s shorts and jersey time, hallelujah. However, the beautiful weather doesn’t add interest to tired routes. The obvious solution, if you’re lucky enough, is to go further afield and ride places that are new. I’ve been fortunate to fit a ride in on a quick family trip to Alberta, as well as take in some stellar riding around Park Rapids, Minnesota. Closer to home, however, has also afforded me a couple of routes I’ve never ridden before. Yesterday, I linked together a Tour de French towns, taking in Lorette, Ste. Anne, Richer and La Broquerie on a route that had it’s share of gravel (river road south of Lorette), great pavement (east from Landmark), and quiet traffic (Dawson Trail east from Ste. Anne). Each town has its own impressive Catholic cathedral, but if I had to give a nod to which one was most impressive, I’d have to give it to Ste. Annes. I think my next local riding adventure might include a gravel route to Grunthal, or something in that direction, I hear there’s a kicking bakery there…

In something totally unrelated, does anyone know if the work on Hwy. 12 will include some form of paved shoulder??? Anything, even a measly foot of paved shoulder, would make the #12 a bit less dangerous.

Turning thoughts to bikes

No, this isn’t my DIY wooden trainer. (seriously, who would buy a Bianchi that’s not Celeste coloured?)  Pretty sure the lumber wouldn’t stand up to my Cancellara-esque wattage and consequent torque…

Busted out the bike trainer for the first time in 2014. Time to start gearing up the fitness for Spring riding and the potential of April gravel grinders and the inaugural mtb race at Grand Beach. Not to mention the potential of the first MIT ride of the year. We couldn’t possibly have a colder, windier, later Spring than last year…could we? Let’s rather have a repeat of 2012.  Who’s in with a prediction as to the first MIT ride of the Spring…? I’ll guess, somewhat optimistically, April 12th.