The Village Velodrome Appreciation Society

A blog about jitensha and jogging

Thursday, November 29, 2007

The king of keirin

Keirin rider "Tomity" has been racing for over a quarter of a century. Here's a great video about him, and life as a keirin rider...


Tuesday, November 27, 2007

35 minutes easy

My masseur asked me to go for a run today so he could get some feedback at the next session. I'm pleased to find my left knee has improved a little. I was able to run a bit further.

I'm also icing again. I had given up, but Onogi-san convinced me it is vital. So I'm stretching more and icing.

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Monday, November 26, 2007

Found a great massuer - at last!

Thanks to some-time Nambanner Jason I have found a great massuer. Onogi-san at Itaden in Yotsuya. I went there today at 1pm and he got stuck into my legs straight away. No mercy either - I was nearly going through the roof. When I complained he told me I have to put up with it and got straight back to work. He was never dangerous though - seemed to know exactly how far to go.

Following the massage he gave me acupuncture. I'm the world's greatest skeptic about this voodoo art, but he insisted, so I gave it a go (the second time I've tried it). He seemed to place the needles better than the last person to try it. I'm still unconvinced about acupuncture - but this session felt better than the last one. Presumably all placeboes should feel the same - so perhaps there is something to acupuncture afterall. Not convinced it's anything more than a way to jack up a massage bill for little effort at this stage though.

But back to the massage, Onogi-san was super professional, speaks English, and used ice to cool my knees as he was working on other areas. Gave me good stretching advice too.

When it was over I checked my watch - 3pm. He'd given me an extra hour. I half expected a bill for 2 hours' massage and acupuncture - but no. Total cost: ¥5,250. A bargain.

I've booked in for next Tuesday.

Oh, and the knees feel slightly better - or maybe that's just in comparison to the pain I endured this afternoon!

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Sunday, November 25, 2007

25 minutes easy

Went for a run today, to test the progression of my knees. The right one is back to normal, but the left has developed a pain at the bottom right of the kneecap. This suggests slight tendon damage (a common secondary problem when the ITB is pulling the kneecap out of alignment). The pain was OK and diminished a bit near the end of the run. I have no swelling.

On matters political, I'm kind of glad to see Kevin Rudd elected in Australia. Unfortunately he's a bit a Blair. But, fingers crossed, he might be good.

It is sad to see, however, the continued obliteration of the Australian Democrats, with all of the party's seats being lost - including Andrew Bartlett in Queensland. The Democrats now have only one elected member of any parliament, and that is in my home state of South Australia, Sandra Kanck.

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Thursday, November 22, 2007

No running

Haven't done any running since the mile. Knees still hurt - and hurt worse than ever before - even compared to when they went before the marathon. I need to get good treatment but nothing has shown any signs of working so far - acupuncture was a useless waste of time and money, most massuers have little or no idea, chiroprody doesn't get to the cause of the problem.

I've heard rolfing is good for my ITB problem (am I right to be a little scared of this treatment?) and I feel sure that the right massuer could help.

Other than that I think I'm looking at surgery - a costly and risky process, but one that delivers good results to many runners.


Monday, November 19, 2007

Wow, 2,000 page views!

The Cycle Mode pictures (below) saw over 800 people look at this blog. I really should use my blog to promote myself.

So I will.

Here's a very quick CV. I'm a writer. I've written for Cycle Sport, Mountain Bike Rider, Time Out, The Guardian, Wallpaper, Phaidon, Mountain Bike Buyer, Cycling Weekly and more. So if you need something written for your magazine, paper, website, preferably about cycling or Japan - or both - get in touch via this site. Please mention cycling in the email subject line because I get a lot of spam.

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Sunday, November 18, 2007

Cycle Mode Tokyo part 1. Weight Weenie parts/carbon frames

The big new items at this year's Cycle Mode were AX Lightness bars and Shimano and Miche carbon cranks

For more track bikes, see the previous blog entry...

...oh, but one final mention. Dunces of the year award.

And the winner is Campagnolo Japan, based in Yokohama. Given product names to copy, they couldn't even transcribe the letters and check them before printing their promotional material. Not only did they get the signs wrong, the official Japanese Campagnolo catalogue includes the "Veroce" (sic) groupset and the "Pistai" (sic) groupset. I truly hope they lose their contract with Campagnolo for making such stupid and basic errors.


Track and fixed gear bikes and parts (aka when fixies jumped the shark)

The Ridley looked good - but shaped a bit too much like a road bike

And what's with the rear brake brdige?

Now for the shark-jumping part...