show me your teeth

I spend a lot of time thinking about how to become more efficient in swimming, running, and biking. Trying to exercise longer by conserving energy rather than using more energy is my goal.

I’ve practiced many hours swimming as slow as I possibly could to get my arms to memorize where to go with each stroke. I’ve practiced breathing with my face barely above the water. I’ve spent over 60 hours in the water learning a new skill and that makes me smile.

I’ve changed the way I run to avoid overstepping and eliminate the cause of potential injury. My strides are shorter, yet I’ve been able to run further and faster. I actually enjoy running and that makes me smile.

The teeth I’m talking about, however are not my pearly whites (mother of pearls). I’ve got a super smooth aerodynamic bike with that has a 55 tooth chainring! Last Saturday, we went 102 miles and I didn’t get out of that chainring the whole time. The best part of the ride (after it happened of course) was climbing the Manayunk Wall (and that was at mile 60). I didn’t go fast and it certainly wasn’t easy, but I didn’t quit (making me smile!). Though, the large chainring is more difficult to pedal on hills, the number of pedal strokes is fewer than with a smaller chainring. The difficulty of pedaling a 55 tooth chainring on a flat surface is only determined by the gear in the rear. With the same gear in the rear, a larger chainring up front will propel the bike further with each stroke (it’s a math problem). Fewer pedal strokes = happier Tom.

By the way, isn’t that picture of Coal funny?

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