February 3rd continued. So much seemed to Blossom today in the three and a half or four hour, nearly 1500 calorie climb today, that it is very worrisome that much of it will be lost, forgotten, not captured. Here is the first attempt. If the diagrams that came to me or to be produced they probably have to wait till tomorrow.
- Don't for a second lose feel for using the legs to roll that horrible weight of this payload forward.
- Even better, retain the feeling of reeling, think hand-crank, cranking the vehicle forward using the thighs and most importantly the first third of the thighs from the crotch down toward the knees.
- Keep the upper torso shifted slightly to the right for reasons that aren't quite clear yet but the right leg is able to do a much better job than it ever has before when that is done. and be certain that the seat of this body is not shifted slightly to the right as seems to be the habit using the 4f support beam as the marker.
- To emphasize some of the points above, think of using one's arms to reel in a horribly large boat fighting its inertia and an offshore Breeze and slight offshore tide. It is doable, and imagine that the boat is a mile offshore. This imagery applied to the thighs is really really really really productive today.
- None of this is with the objective of being a Tour de France cyclist. It is with the objective of arriving at a point where the 4-Hour climb is enjoyable, sustainable, and intuitive fully freeing the mind for other work, but giving the body tremendous exercise.
- Diagram of the hand crank.
- Diagram of using arms to reel in the rope with a heavy payload.
- Most important diagram. The thighs turning a heavy donut at the knees which is exactly connected to the huge wheel that moves the vehicle forward. And hard pins through the knees that a fix it to that donut absolutely with just pivoting through the pins as an option.
- Maybe more tomorrow. This will have to do for now.
- Other than to say that the new gear allowed a much more productive climb. 10 or 15% more calories could be expended, much smoother pedaling, rolling, reeling,
This post is cumulative, an ongoing collection of experience that is quite related, probably, near certainly, building from the bottom on Up of the post.
This is a running Journal.
January 29th. Tonight was in some respects particularly a pleasant 340 Watt climb. The prior three or four very positive journal entries were affirmed tonight. And hopefully they were Eclipse too, gone beyond, built upon as a consequence of inspiration found within this nervous system. In the last 20% of the journey which had been more sustainable and less demanding of attention than days or weeks prior settling upon a rolling feel and letting go concerns about ongoing watts per hour output. In the last 20% something quite nice emerged, an image of these knees being the center of a large tire so large that it was reaching the ground below my knees and extending way above my knees and that tire is what was moving the vehicle forward. This made sense of all the work to my nervous system in a way that I rarely if ever recalled before. Now the attempts I have been making to be spinning a sphere at my knees were made much more logical to my body and nervous system with this image. Other things that were very important during this journey, most important by far and a real find I think, instead of indulging the tendency of my body to lean the head and Shoulders slightly forward when things get difficult, doing the opposite, moving the shoulders backward with the chin down which seems to engage the hamstrings and buttocks automatically supporting a forward and back movement that my body comfortably accepted was integral to keeping that large Tire I referenced rolling at a constant speed forward. Also crucial throughout the trip was periodically asking myself, do I need to slow down the vehicle to be able to maintain this rolling with my thighs and knees?
January 27th. The most recent two journal entries were born out again in today's 1 hour and 45 minute ride. allowing anything and everything to vary except for the Primacy of the vision of rolling the small sphere at my knees in a cyclical manner that feels cyclical, rotational, rolling. there may be added Insight given by the body today that the greatest power is in the last inch or so of knee extension and the notion of if I were on my knees trying to lift an extremely heavy weight with my back particularly shoulders and head, I would find the greatest power and ease in the last inch or so of straightening. And this included allowing my head and neck and shoulders to be in a more relaxed backward leaning position than is typical for me. it suggested a slight stretching of the Torso Along these lines. and it provided further insight as to when to reduce the force of the cycling to allow for the tip of the knees to fully exert themselves comfortably in that final inch or two. but again, the inclination to sort of do a jerking forward motion with the knee needs to be resisted so that a circular cycling rolling sensation and reality is maintained at the knees which was easily available when I thought of it. the journey was much shorter in terms of time tonight and human power because the ratio of motor to human Watts was roughly doubled to simulate a more normal Cadence, RPM, of probably 72 or so, almost double all of the recent Journeys. This to do a sanity check on whether the gear which I expect to arrive late this week, which will require quite a bit of work to put on the vehicle, whether that effort is worthwhile and tonight's experience certainly suggests that it is.
January 25. Another very encouraging night, affirming that the notes of two days ago below maybe something substantial. New insights, 04 not new but worth emphasizing. 1. Yes, execute the vision of turning, maintaining momentum of a relatively small sphere, maybe 10 in in diameter, at the knees, with the knees. 2. Execute the vision that that's fear is very at the end of the reach of the knees, not closer to the Torso which the body would like, but it's not. 3. Starting with the vision and holding that constant, and allowing everything else to be a variable, cadence, including going extremely slow, as low as 20 or 25 RPM, but more typically 35 or 40, supplemental power. Anything is a variable except violating that vision and it is absolutely miraculous the way the body figures out how to execute that vision. 4. An unknown is how easy or possibly very very difficult it is to Pedal at such a very low Cadence as is forced currently by this miraculous vehicle. It is simply a current limit of the gearing which may change within the next several weeks if the gear that was just ordered fits on the rear assembly. you shouldn't lie, this was a very respectable climb, 120 watts per hour, 390 Watts total, which is about 1,400 calories. It will be interesting to see among other things how all this changes when and if more normal gearing is available.
January 23rd. Well, another very positive day. Some very important things learned. Can they be remembered? Can they be repeated? Can they be sustained? Possibly. 1. It is pretty indisputable that any sport to be at the very top performance requires hours and hours all day practice every day for years. That is certainly not what this old body is being provided. Compared to a year-and-a-half ago 25% or less of the time and energy is being invested on average per week and I really need to accept that the best I can hope for is occasional glimpses of the high end of the sport which used to be routine for this old body. 2. Vision. Wow, that was completely instrumental to my effective change and turn around leadership in industry for several decades. But in terms of my personal leadership not for the last several decades. Much of that is because it is infinitely more difficult with the challenges that I've taken on these last twenty years. They are infinitely more difficult complex intractable challenges. But that might not be the whole of it. And or, it might be that I'm climbing high enough on the learning curve that that can shift a bit. Today cycling, it's probably a two-and-a-half to three hour Trek because I slow the vehicle way way down, by dramatically reducing the electric power per mile, allowing me to do fully 25 or 20% of all the work for that 900 pound payload, to allow this body to burn 1200 calories or so every other day. So Below in this post are many things that have been learned. And in the last third of today something explicit happened which has happened before but sporadically and probably not much for a long time and I'm not sure I grasped what was going on at the time. When I shifted from trying to operate my body based on what I know, all of which was very helpful especially the notion of maintaining a feeling in my thighs that they were cycling, Lessons Learned below, and shifted it into seeing what needed to be done the body achieves a whole new level of efficiency, Effectiveness, sustainability, power, and performance. And I vaguely recall from my days in Industry that when I learned to formulate a vision whether it was for fast typing or presentations or whatever that it switches the nervous system a Quantum in terms of effectiveness. It might be that it's as simple as keeping this in mind. I don't suspect that it's that simple but it might be. More likely it is first doing the work to grasp mentally and physically the task at hand extremely well so that the limbic system, the mammalian brain, our soul, our Seat of Wisdom, has enough data to work its magic, Vision, that the body can then magically implement. tonight it was the long-delayed return of the notion of maintaining the rotation of a sphere at my knees, a rather small sphere. Many months ago I wrote of this with extreme Euphoria, up near the Canadian border as I recall. And after some number of days it disappeared and seemed like a total aberration. If I had grasped that it was that I was executing a vision rather than trying to feel and or force my way, maybe if I had been able to grasp that I could have held onto the extraordinary performance. But I think there is at least one other variable and maybe dozens. One of them is lesson number three from tonight. Power and or Cadence has a dramatic impact on what the body needs to do to deliver effective sustainable powerful performance at that Cadence and Power. At least I'm pretty sure. Anyway, the grade gets steeper during the seven and a half mile, close to 3-hour trip that I take up the mountain. And remarkably pretty regularly the last 25% of the trip the body is performing much better than it does up until that point. But anyway, due to the gearing characteristics of this vehicle at a very low Cadence, 40 revolutions per minute, very high power needs to be delivered if I am going to do the between 20 and 25% energy to move this vehicle which I like to do. In order to maintain this I need to drop down even below 40 RPM which is difficult to maintain any sort of timing, the feeling of peddling, and work to stay around 40 RPM or 42 or 45. In any case the wattage output needs to be around a hundred and twenty to a hundred and 70 or even 200 at various spots which is a lot of output. With that kind of power, and I think at such a low Cadence, that notion that the thighs at the knees are turning a very small sphere, the vision that that's what has to happen, with momentum of that sphere maintained because the energy demands of erratic power are catastrophic, that all seems to work and it worked months ago at that euphoric time.
January 21st. Seems like another significant advance standing on the advance of the 18th. 370 Watts, 12 or 1300 calories, spent climbing toward Mount Whitney. The central goal throughout this trip was to maintain a sense of cycling and this was extremely useful and fairly successful. Toward the end of the journey, a new element fell in place, though an element familiar from times over the last two years. On the prior Journal, it was mentioned that the axis is extremely important. Yes indeed. At extremely low Cadence which the gearing of this heavy vehicle makes desirable much of the time, what fell into place was that although counterintuitive, slowing down the Cadence of the cycling motion, allows for the bottom of the cycle amplitude to be fully reached. This was not something I was aware of for many weeks or months. But I suspect it is an important thought going forward. It will be tempting to over adjust and focus on just that downward stroke instead of maintaining Balance cycling between both full thighs.
January 18th. Well, maybe there's a reason it's called cycling! This may be a big deal for me! Whatever feeling I had for moving this vehicle did not exist day before yesterday as reported. It was terribly frustrating. The vehicle was moved but there was not any five minute period Of the two and a half hours that felt other than forced, uncoordinated, spastic, really unpleasant and discouraging.
the two and a half hour, 1000 calorie climb this afternoon, started out better, but not a whole lot. The clear objective held by me was to try and find something that felt understandable. 2 days ago was so crushing, that it was really starting at Ground Zero. And for the first hour, the output in terms of power was incredibly low, maybe 90 watts per hour. But two days ago was so horrible that that was okay. The notion occurred to me that the vehicle should feel something like peddling, cycling, and it had no such feeling for me. It turns out that although my body has found cycling over the last two years at various times my mind never grasped that. And today grasping that it should feel like cycling was not magic, for the first half it helped a little bit but not a whole lot. But it seems it brought this body close enough that in the second half it began to find that the feeling of cycling needs to happen in the farthest most third of the thighs. Are they rotating around one another? Of course not. But none the less there is a sense that they achieved cycling between them. In the first two thirds it was a matter of trying to find where the vehicle would let me cycle. And the last third it seems it had taught me the approximate power range and now my body could decide to cycle my legs even a bit beyond what the vehicle seemed to want to let me do. And in the last fifteen percent, the steepest grade as usual, it went to even another level. There was a wide amplitude playfulness to it almost with tremendous power output, roughly 140 watts per hour. And an Insight from more than a year ago which is lost by me most of the time, returned in this context. There is an axis, for lack of a better word, to the cycling range of the thighs. At very high torque, locate cadance, the axis is slightly down. And at higher Cadence, and slightly lower output per stroke, the axis is pointing slightly up from there and a wider range is possible. All this seems quite promising. With all the ideas that have helped move this vehicle more than 20,000 miles now, the notion that there should be a cycling feeling somewhere in the body, and I'm sure it's in the last 20% of the thighs up to the knees, but there should be a feeling of cycling always, this is new. Who would have thought?
January 17. And yesterday, notwithstanding all the insights below, my body had absolutely zero idea of how to cycle. Totally. LOL. Is this a thing? It is for me. Will I recover faster due to the insights gained so far? Probably so! I think the biggest help will be to recall from long ago, that I must exist as PART of the machine, not act ON the machine. Big, big, high amplitude also I expect to be helpful. But oh goodness does it hurt, frustrating. Ugh.
January 7th. Nirvana encountered again? Or is it Icarus getting too close to the Sun? Euphoria was reported back in September when the notion of maintaining momentum in an imaginary cylinder at my knees was delivering extremely gratifying, sustainable, powerful performance. And then days later it was completely unattainable and ever since. Well yesterday for several hours climbing up to the base of Mount Whitney much of the phenomena returned and seemed quite promising. Almost certainly that experience would not have been achieved but for the guidance written of in earlier segments below. Or, maybe it is a loser, a siren song. Time will tell. And it went beyond that event Series in September. Yes, Central was the imagery experienced in my body of maintaining momentum on the tremendously inertia bound cylinder at my knees with my knees, High amplitude, but all of a sudden for the first time that I can recall it was realized that all of the power comes not at my knees, not at the front of my thighs as I have experienced with success recently, but from the top 20% of my thighs where they join the hips. And certainly in terms of anatomy and physics that indeed is where the power comes from. And with that in mind the vision that was executed was of exerting power from that top 20% area intimately tied with rotating, providing energy to maintain the inertial rotation, of that cylinder at the knees.
Oh, and I have forgotten to write up until now, a notion of surface area, sort of odd and Abstract, but very helpful, as wide as possible surface area, almost a friction area, as the thighs pass each other up and down.
January 4th. James, listen. Unless the feet and ankles are always limp, always limp, and all of the focus and force coming from the top 25% of your thighs, nothing else works. Yes, the feet and ankles are unbelievably seductive, persistent, enticing. Job one is to fight that and to keep them limp.
Fatigue or extra effort entices James to lower the amplitude of his up and down thigh isolation. No! No no no! So counter-intuitive but the opposite! Go toward maximum amplitude gently, smoothly, briefly, rolling through the extremes of the amplitude. It's amazing.
January 1st 2019. It has been a while since this earlier post. The earlier post is not being reviewed by me at this moment but the ensuing very solid month or so recent seems so solid that the top of mind mental ideas and images that make cycling so consistent now are shared here.
The thighs, particularly the forward part, are the source of all power and effort. Nothing in The Shins and the feet. Any effort in The Shins and the feet is a sure sign of degraded effectiveness. The mental image is of the thighs applying sustainable pressure as estimated for the entire trip of however many hours onto a large wheel or cylinder that they directly impact. What is needed and delivered is completely continuous firm smooth pressure to that wheel with full amplitude of the thighs in an up and down as opposed to circular motion. It is not, not, not, the job to turn the crank with any part of the body. The entire job is to provide maximum sustainable pressure in full amplitude to that wheel allowing not even a centimeter of the wheel's travel to be without pressure. An additional gigantic Discovery was that when additional power is required then what is required of the thighs is to increase the amount of force that they put into that circular wheel continuously. It is not, not, not the job to force or jerk or lever or shorten or change Cadence or anything else. With all of this in recent weeks every two days an up and downhill journey is conducted of approximately 275 up to 400 watts of human output. Also useful is the notion of maintaining a comfortable Cadence not too fast not too slow of roughly 65 RPM and to apply the power notion just mentioned to smooth out, to deal with, variations in the grade and of course to adjust the motor power to keep things within a manageable range.
Oh, and the wide amplitude up and down of the thighs is in relation to the physical properties of the vehicle but not dictated by that. The smooth continuous up and down needs to be primarily a physical movement of the body independent of the vehicle.
....... earlier post.
Solar RV Cycling technique. Faithfully, humbly using knees to rotate the flywheel....
Yes, yesterday at least, I came full circle, no pun intended, back to where I was months ago extolling the virtues of this, when I was in the Cascades. Or maybe just before.
But yesterday here was that Holy Grail again. Powerful, smooth, enjoyable, natural, sustainable, fun, reasonable.
Why was it so firmly lost and why did it come back? I believe that the following were not understood and they were violated.
Never more than gentle, respectful, humble constant pressure from the knees around the circumference of the flywheel.
Being with the flywheel, never acting on it.
Full dimensionality of the circumference of the Freewheel.
Continual instantaneous Readjustment of everything to allow the above, Cadence, effort, Gering, motor ratio.... arranging everything around the gentle continual pressure rotating the flywheel. Always meeting the Freewheel where it is, the inertia where it is, not where I might want it to be. No matter what the conditions.
Every instant meeting the momentum of the total mass just beyond the point of complete ease, but short of the point of too much stress, too much effort.