I headed out this morning at 5:45 am for this morning's 35 km bike and 8 km run. The sun is rising later and later each morning and it was chilly! It was only 13C and I needed to wear arm warmers. How is that possible when its mid July?? After the winter we had, I thought for sure it would be a smoking hot summer. Nope, not yet at least. No doubt, it will be smoking hot at IMMT.
I stopped at Running Free last night and bought three inner tubes and CO2s to replace the ones I used up on the weekend. As I was leaving the store, I noticed a table set up selling discounted boxes of GU for $35.00. They were to expire this month but with IMMT coming up, I offered to buy them for $20.00 and to my surprise, they accepted. Score! They regularly sell for $91.00 per box. Hope I like the flavour, grape or something. When I got home, Tammy saw the stuff I bought and asked if I bought a new tire. Nope, the ones I have on the bike are fine.
I headed up the usual route and was heading up Warden just north of Stouffville Road when I noticed it was getting harder and harder to pedal. I stopped and checked my back tire and it was solid hard. I started riding again and it was even harder to pedal and the steering was unresponsive. Crap, my front tire was flat...again. I quickly changed it (I seemed to be getting faster at changing tires) and decided to turn around and head back home as I was almost at the half way point. One thing I did noticed when I was changing the tire was that the tire that Tammy had brought on Saturday to Zephyr, had a scuff on the side wall. This morning, upon closer inspection, it was a hole in the side wall. I decided to play it safe and turn back home. Also it was getting darker and looked like rain. Odd, I don't remember seeing rain in the forecast.
As I rode south down Warden and across Elgin Mills, the tire kept going thunk thunk thunk thunk. I stopped and checked the tire but it was fine. I couldn't figure out where the noise was coming from but rode slower and upright (not in aero position). I was less than two km from home on Mccowan riding hard as the rain started when the thunk thunk thunk thunk noise got louder followed by a SSSSSSSSsssssss.....BANG!!!!! The front of the bike immediately became hard to control and jerked from side to side until I slowed down. At that point in time, it dawned on me that when I was changing the tube, I never checked the side of the tire to make sure the tube wasn't pinched or wasn't bulging out of the hole. So much for being able to change tires fast. I'm amazed that: a) I got as far as I did b) it didn't blow while I was going downhill or c) that there were no cars beside me (it was about 6:40 am). I called Tammy and asked her to pick me up.....again. Afterwards I went and ran for 7 km.
Already late for work, I decided to take my bike into Gears Bike Shop for a tune up. The bike was making a lot of squeaking noises and was getting hard to change the gears, and oh yeah, I need more inner tubes and CO2s. As they checked my bike in, the guy measured the chain...yup toast and the cassette needs changing. The last time they were changed was August 2012, right before IMMT. I figure I must have rode 7,000 km since then. Also my Power Tap batteries in the hub need changing and I need one new tire but I bought two tires, just in case. Total bill should run about $450. This is an expensive sport!!! I've paid less for a car tune up.