06 March 2016

Saturday Full Paul Jason

On Saturday I rode the "Paul Jason Memorial course" -- over Wada Pass, then the golf course hills of Uenohara, then over the climb to Kobu Tunnel, and back in via the Akigawa and Tamagawa.  145 kms and around 1500 meters of elevation gain.

We had some major delays on the outbound leg.  The planned 730AM start had been shifted to 8AM, then 820AM, at Jerome's request.  Then another delay. Didier's rear brake cable was stuck when he and Jerome arrived at my place.  We replaced the cable with a spare from my supply.  850AM by the time we got on the road. Then, as we headed toward Hachioji, Didier's left pedal started to wobble.  After tightening it once, it loosened again.  Finally it came entirely detached from the crankarm and he "one legged" it the last 5 kms or so into Hachioji.  I joined with one leg drills, and Jerome offered Didier regular pushes on his back or shoulder.

In Hachioji we stopped at the "You Can!" bike shop.  I have seen You Can jerseys in Japan as long as I can remember, but had never been to the shop.  In fact, it turns out, there are now 8 shops, 3 in the Kanto area and others far away.  The shop did not open until 11AM on Sunday, but someone was inside at 10:20AM and kindly took a look.  The problem was not in the pedal, but in the left crank arm. So Didier ended up with a new crankset, BB and chain.
Open from 11 ... but emergency service at 1020AM!
While we waited, we walked a few blocks to a Doutor Coffee shop for "morning set" including coffee.  Jerome and Didier, with anti-pollen masks and sun glasses, looked like bank robbers trying not to be caught on video.  They jokingly told the clerk at Doutor "this is a stick up.  Turn over the money!"  Fortunately, he got the joke.
Your coffee or your life!
The You Can repairs done quickly, professionally and at a reasonable price.  We met Kamiya-san, the founder of the small chain of shops.  I showed him my Parlee and Gokiso wheels (and Dipell bartape). We headed onward.  It was nearly Noon and we were not even to Takao.  As we entered the mountains, the pollen was so thick I could taste it on my teeth.

On the rindo climb.  Some leaves and branches under the rubber.
I made it up the forest road approach to Wada Toge in good time, Jerome and Didier following.  As I waited for them at the top, 3 young women cyclists came up the front/main road, each gasping for breath as she crested this very, very tough climb.  One offered to take a photo of me with my bike.  So when we later wanted a traditional Positivo Espresso pose of 3 riders with bikes, we asked her to take that picture.

She and her friends seemed to get the joke, and so I offered to snap their photo in a similar pose.

A new tradition is born.

The descent down Wada - Ura was great.  I REALLY like descending on the Parlee (Altum R).  It is I think the nicest bike I have ever ridden for a descent with corners and varied grades.  Nimble. Smooth.  Goes just where I point it.  Grounded.

After a quick convenience store lunch, we had more and more climbing.  Then after the descent from Kobu Tunnel, Didier and I said goodbye to Jerome as he headed for Tomin no Mori.  Didier and I headed home, arriving not too long after dark.

All in all, not the longest of training rides, nor even the most climbing, but no slouch either, and nice to enjoy the forced interlude in Hachioji and the "wait at the top" rest at Wada.

My only complaint about the day was the pollen.  For some reason, this year my loratidine seems to have failed me, and today I am a sniffling wreck. No doubt I will recover quickly, and be back in the saddle again on future weekends.


Richard said...

Ditto for me about Loritadine. For the last six years I've started taking it in early Feb, and I've never had a problem. However, this year I was reduced to a withered husk :( My doc told me on a scale of effectiveness it scores 1/5, and asked what strength of antihistamine I wanted .. I went for a 3/5, as I didn't want to be too sleepy! The Japanese brand name is Ebastine (10g) ~ give it a try!

Manfred von Holstein said...

I think the high pollen count this spring explains why you are finding Claritin to show insufficient efficacy. It is one of the weaker second generation anti-histamines, although a popular one. If you want to buy OTC in the US, I recommend Zyrtec=cetirizine. Very effective. Best taken before going to bed to avoid any risk of drowsiness. Ebastel is also fine, but you need to get a prescription in Japan.

David Litt said...

I stopped by the clinic at work today. Time to try something other than Loratadine.

I was given "Alesion" (アレじオン)20mg which is a Japanese brand name for epinastine. Another 2nd generation H1 anti-histamine. I guess in the U.S. it is in some types of anti-allergy eye drops. Anyway, it is another choice that can be taken once a day before bed and so should not make me feel like I am walking around in a fog.

The doc also gave me some eye drops (リボスチン) and a nose inhaler (Allermist - gsk version of fluticasone propionate). I guess if I take the last -- a corticosteroid -- I may run afoul of the WADA/UCI standards, so that will really mess up my otherwise full racing season. For the time being it stays on the shelf in the sealed bottle.

Manfred von Holstein said...

Alesion is first launched second generation antihistamine in Japan. Actually developed by Boehringer Ingelheim and sold together with Sankyo, then Daiichi Sankyo for many years. Now it is also available OTC through BI's subsidiary SS Pharma. Should work similarly to Zyrtec. If you get the chance to buy generic Zyrtec OTC in the US, that would be the cheapest option.

Richard said...

The Flying Pig sells the Costco version, about ¥7,000 with import costs for 365 tabs.


I also got the same inhaler, though I have trouble figuring out if I used it correctly, as never taste/smell anything.