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Jerry

Jerry

Maryland

Jerry 's Passions

Road Biking

Jerry 's Bio

Welcome to HC Cycling!

My name is Jerry and I'm a road cyclist. A few years ago I began a blog on Facebook to share my experiences and passion for road cycling. In addition to my Facebook page, I plan to write product reviews here on Competitive Cyclist.

Most agree that the term hors categorie (HC) is a french term meaning "beyond categorization." As it relates to cycling lingo, the term is used to label the most extreme and difficult climbs. The origin of the term is somewhat difficult to pinpoint. Many references point to the early years of the Tour de France and its catergorization of climbs used to distribute points to the first few cyclists to crest the mountains along the route - hors categorie being the most difficult. Other references mention a system developed to rank cycling climbs, perhaps for the Tour de France, whereby a climb was labled according to the gear used by a car, rumored to be a Citroen, to climb the mountain. A category 4 climb is the easiest, 3rd then 2nd, and 1st being the most difficult as the car had to be in first gear to climb that particular mountain. As with many sports, someone felt it necessary to go beyond the most difficult and the hors categorie was born.

As I began cycling I felt like all the climbs ahead of me were HC climbs. That is until I would download my computer data only to realize that most were simply hills and did not even meet the criteria to be called a climb. As my cycling has improved my outlook on climbing has changed. As I grow older my outlook on life has changed.

Life and cycling can both be full of challenges. I now realize just how challenging this sport can be. Just as in life, you can train to climb more efficiently and faster, but just like life's events, sometimes all the training and preparation that you can handle will not be enough to get you over the next mountain and I'm okay with that. Sometimes you may have to stop and rest, or walk, or even turn around and take another route and I'm okay with that. Sometimes life and cycling will deal you an unfair challenge that you just cannot beat and do not understand and I now realize I have to be okay with that. What is most important about life and cycling is the journey.

The more you cycle in groups, the more you talk to fellow cyclists. The more you talk to fellow cyclists, the more you discover about other people. The more you discover about other people, the more you learn that we are all confronting, have confronted, or will confront life challenges that are hors categorie (beyond catergorization). Keep things in perspective. Cycling is a sport, a passion, a journey, a part of your life. Be careful not to miss out on the life part of cycling. Follow my journey through the exciting, challenging, rewarding and often complicated world of recreational road cycling.

I created my Facebook page to share my experiences and passion for road cycling. Through discussions, editorials, product reviews, and photo journalism, I hope to share with you much of what I have learned and continue to learn about life and this great sport of cycling.

Welcome,
Jerry

Jerry

Jerry wrote a review of on May 19, 2016

As Real As You Can Get Inside!
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I was really concerned about spending so much money on a new trainer given that I already had a good one (Lemond Revolution). But one session on this and the comparisons end. Pair this with a virtual training App and you will be hard pressed to find a more realistic experience. I paired it with Zwift and found it difficult to stay away on rest days. Currently I have it paired with FulGaz and love the virtual climbs. If you want to know where you stand in comparison to the pros, trying riding some of the famous tour climbs and you will quickly know if you have what it takes. If the weather or your local terrain prevents you from training hills or mountains, try this and you will be climbing like a mountain goat. If you're serious about training, buy this and you'll see results.

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Jerry

Jerry wrote a review of on May 19, 2016

Once "Clicked In" They Are Perfect
5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

I purchased these bibshorts believing the reviews and marketing of ASSOS that they are made specifically for long rides. I was set to ride the 100 mile Gran Fondo New York and thought I would give them a try. I tend to have a sensitive bottom (occasional numbness and sit bone issues) and worked through many saddles before settling on the Selle Italia SLR Superflow. Then I began trying different bibshorts looking for long ride comfort. I've tried Castelli and have been relatively happy with the Progetto X2 chamois but the Castelli sizing is just not right for me. The XXL is slightly too tight and short in the torso and the XXXL is slightly too big. I've tried the Specialized RBX Comp and RBX Pro and have been generally happy but depending on the day, any ride longer than two hours, I may begin to shift around looking for the sweet spot. Once I got the chamois in the right position and "clicked in" (an ASSOS marketing term) I was good to go. The bibs just disappeared and did their job. The straps are wide and the most comfortable I have ever worn. The KuKu Penthouse is all that the hype says it is. The soft no compression fabric allows your junk to rest comfortably where ever you put it - left, right, up, down - you guys know what I mean. The chamois will not be for everyone because the cushioning is substantial. I prefer that for longer rides and it was superb. The memory foam does not compress flat but provides nice support. I like the lack of billboard graphics found on many Castelli bibs. I did find myself noticing other ASSOS wearers by the identifying purple tag on the rear of the bib. I saw many more than I would have expected given the price. Also, the graphics on the bib straps is a nice touch and eliminates the need for a tag offering washing instructions. Overall, I like this bib for long rides and find myself looking for other ASSOS products because so far they give you what you pay for.

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Jerry

Jerry wrote a review of on May 19, 2016

Tough, Fast, and Sexy
5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

Bought these based on positive reviews and a belief that graphene is the new miracle compound. I am partial to Vittoria and have tried a number of tires in their line up. These are my go to for general purposes. As a recreational cyclist, I cannot justify using a true "race" specific tire but these are a nice compromise. I put a couple hundred training miles on them and then rode the harsh roads of the Gran Fondo New York (where this year many cyclists reported locals throwing tacks on the roads causing numerous flats). My buddy picked up one of these tacks in his Vittoria Diamante Pro Lights and fortunately the Campagnolo car was right there to assist and got him moving again in just a couple of minutes (not bad for having to change the tube). He later suffered a sidewall blow out and DNF. Meanwhile, my Rubino Pro Speed tires cruised through all of the debris and I have not noticed a change in rolling resistance from my Vittoria Rubino Pro III tires. In fact, call me crazy, but I feel like these are just a tad faster. I'm also a visual consumer and I like the sidewall graphics!

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Jerry

Jerry wrote a review of on May 19, 2016

Nice gloves - Like tissues on your hands
5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

I wore these gloves to ride the Gran Fondo New York - a 100 mile ride. The fit was perfect. I sized up from the actual measurements of my hands. There is a generous amount of soft fabric to wipe the runny nose of cycling with no irritating seams to rub against the nose. My only issue is the lack of significant padding. I will not wear these again for a ride of this length but they will be perfect for rides of one or two hours.

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Jerry

Jerry wrote a review of on May 19, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

I wore this to ride the Gran Fondo New York. Temperatures were expected to be in the 40s while waiting at the start on the GW Bridge and in the 60s during the ride. I paired this base layer with the ASSOS arm warmers, the GFNY Biemme race jersey, and alternated wearing a Castelli rain jacket. The base layer performs exactly as advertised. When I was putting in an effort on the climbs, the wicking properties kept me cool and dry. When descending Bear Mountain at 41 mph, it kept the chill off my chest. The fit is spot on - fits snug without binding. I asked for and received advise from the CC Staff and they were absolutely correct in their suggestion on this base layer being what I needed given the anticipated temperatures. They know the product and gave great advice.

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Jerry

Jerry wrote a review of on May 19, 2016

Perfection in fit and warmth
5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

Preparing for the Gran Fondo New York, I needed to plan my kit for temperatures as low as the high 40s while waiting at the start for 45 minutes on the GW bridge to as high as the 60s during the ride. As it turned out, it rained, hailed on Bear Mountain and was generally cold. I wore these arm warmers in addition to the ASSOS Spring/Fall base layer and the GFNY Biemme race jersery and went back and forth wearing the Castelli rain jacket. It was a perfect combination. The arm warmers never moved and provided just the right amount of warmth. I never noticed them - which is exactly what you want from your cycling kit.

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