In search of a comfortable saddle part 3

So, I like the Fizik Aliante better than the Gobi even though it is a road saddle.  The raised rear part of the saddle is more comfortable for my lower back.    Everyone knows numbness is not good.  The Aliante has a rounded shape which I feel presses the soft tissue making it a bad fit for me.  The pressure from the saddle’s rounded shape doesn’t feel right.   Having said that, after extended time in the saddle the numbness still returns.

Anyway, my temporary solution is to pedal standing up for a while to relieve the soft tissue area.  Another tactic I use to prevent numbness is to add lots of trails during my bike ride.  I stand when descending trails so that also reduces the time I’m sitting in the saddle.  I also stand while descending fire roads for the same reason.  This all helps but its not a solution to the numbness its a bandaid solution.

The Meteora MTB race I looking forward to is 5 weeks.  There are extended climbs in this race.  That means there will be a lot of time sitting in the saddle.  The last thing I want is to get numb or having to remember to stand up.  I want to focus on my performance and have a great race.

The next saddle I’m going to test is from SQ Labs.  More on this saddle later.

In search of a comfortable saddle

I’ve been using the Bontrager saddle that came with my bike for 4,000km without any problems.  Now, I get numb and looking for a new saddle.  After searching online for causes and solutions to this problem I decided to just try some saddles out. 

The current test saddle on my Trek is a Fizik Gobi M3, 13 cm.  After three rides I can say it is much better than my old one, no numbness, but it is HARD.  We all know that I must adapt to it.  The Fizik is much narrower which means its more comfortable to pedal.  Having said that, I felt some pain behind the knee and moved the saddle closer to the handlebars.

Other things that have crossed my mind are bibs.  Do they ever wear out?

Other saddles that have caught my attention are Selle Italia and SQ Labs.  Selle Italia is very popular and I might be able to test one out before buying.  SQ labs, on the other hand, I’ve only seen online.   However, they seem to be the answer to the numbness.  They have a very interesting design might work.

Anyway, I will see how the Fizik fits after a few more rides.

The Fizi Gobi M3
The old saddle

Week five, longest ride ever, bad weather

Unfortunately, last week I only managed to ride my MTB once.  Having said that, I rode over 47 kilometers, which is my longest ride ever which is not too bad.  Obviously, that was a fun ride because I rode with my friend.  Everyone know riding bikes, especially down trails, is much better with good company.
Furthermore, I also trained with kettlebells twice last week, swings and Turkish getups.  We both know that cycling doesn’t really work our hamstrings, so it’s a good thing those kettlebell swings killed my hamstrings, they are still sore. 
The weather forecast for next week is not good, its gonna snow.  I hope they are wrong because I want to get some more time on the bike.
I’m also looking into a GoPro and post video editing software for my MTB related time but also for the family.  Not to mention the hardware itself, camera, various mounting gear but also how to shoot videos, angles, cinematography, and resolution and framerates.  I’ve viewed a ton of GoPro Hero 7 reviews trying to decide which one to get. 
Man, this is an entirely new world, with lots of rabbit holes to go down.  Here are some resources I found helpful for a newbie like me, check them out. 

Make sure to read this Digital Trends article

Here is a video that compares all the GoPro Hero 7 editions black, silver, and white

After you decide on a GoPro, here is how to set it up so you can later improve the footage with software.  Here the “Loam Ranger” shows how to set up your camera.  He recommends an older GoPro but everything is relevant to the current GoPro’s, minus the gimbal.


And don’t forget, this video, the “Loam Ranger” explains how to post-process videos the easy FREE way.


Week four: good weather, long rides, and resistance training

After all, this was a good week.  The weather was good, especially the end.  I managed to train for 10 hours which is my target.  Furthermore, Friday’s weather was amazing.  It was like a spring day, I could not get off my bike,  I rode for 3 hours and 27 minutes.

We both know that we should supplement out cycling training with resistance exercise.  So, I started working out because my upper body felt weak on the bike.  My triceps and upper body got tired so I started the following bodyweight routine.

Pull-ups 3 sets: 7, 7, and 6 reps
Ring dips 3 sets:  2,3 and 4 reps
Barbell deadlifts  3 sets: 11, 12, and 11 reps
Rings pushups 3 sets: 10, 9, and 7 reps
Hanging keen raises 2 sets:  10 and 10 reps

The rides mantra was:  While uphill look ahead all the way to the top.  Descending:  look ahead and heavy feet light hands.



Third ride in a row

Yesterday, was the third ride in a row.  However, toward the end of the bike ride, I was starving and craving chocolate chip cookies with milk.  Even though I had some almonds with me they were not enough.  This means I must rebuild my fitness level again.  If the weather keeps up and lets me train, I’ll be fine in a few weeks.

Riding was a bit better with the saddle angle nose increase.  Nevertheless, I will investigate buying a new Fabric saddle.

Because of the muddy trails, I must wash the bike, especially for the drive train and suspension.  

Today’s short ride

After all, I managed to squeeze in a short ride today about one hour and forty minutes.  The way I see it If you cannot ride as long as you want to, ride more intensely.  So, today’s spin was a Fartlek ride which is more intense compared to a long low heart rate one.

Another thing that was running around my mind was the tire pressure dilemma. Low-pressure for more traction or high pressure for more rolling efficiency. As you’ve seen everything is a compromise.


Things to do before the next ride:

  • Adjust saddle angle more nose up
  • Lube chain
  • Write down current bike setup
  • Try to sit a bit further back in the saddle

On the mountain bike again after 30 days

So, I jumped on my mountain bike today after 30 days.  I managed to ride for two hours and twenty minutes covering thirty kilometers.  However, I realized that my fitness level dropped.  My heart rate was slightly elevated going up the usual hills.  The truth is I have to get back to training.  I track my training by time, not distance.  Which means I must train 8 to 10 hours per week. 


The local trails