Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Cycling physical passed!

Yesterday I spent a few hours at the local hospital together with a sports doctor to evaluate my current condition with regards to cycling longer distances. The tests included a heart EKG, blood work, body fat measurements, general health check and lung potential measurements.

What was funny was the doctor was someone I knew from sight as I have season tickets to the local first division football club FC Den Bosch. She was their physio doctor for about three years and used to sit behind me with the other doctors during the games! We also chatted about her other team she takes care of now, the Den Bosch pro basketball team.

Anyhow, the results where fine. To put it in her words, “Bike as hard as you want to push yourself, you know what pain is OK.” ;-)
Some of the resulting data was pretty interesting as I used to be measured for some of this stuff in my previous military life, so I was interested in comparing a normal persons values to what my top condition was back then.

  • Weight is currently 84.4 kg (with clothes on), optimal weight would be 81 kg. Interesting as in my top form I was 79 kg.
  • Body fat is currently 21,5%, should be 17% with deviation of +/- 2% allowed. In my top form I had once measured 7% body fat.
  • Some lung values:
    • forced vital capacity (FVC) is 5,52 liters
    • forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1) is 4,52 liters
    • pulmonary function (PF) is 13,0 liters/sec.

These seemed pretty interesting to me, basically I can go into ‘Hurt me plenty” mode and enjoy my rides!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

A trip in the rain to Nijmegen today

I biked to work today in the rain… that was an experience! The weather was supposed to rain early and then let up later in the morning so I just expected to dry out after the first hour before I got to work. No go, though it did stop raining after about 30km. Just to make sure I didn’t get to work dry, it decided to hose me down as I entered Nijmegen… damn, it is not nice when your shorts are soaked! ;-)

The clothes were laid out over the radiators at work (by the elevators at the end of the hall as they are the only ones working in our building) to dry. I headed home at 1600 hrs and it was nice and dry. The wind was blowing out of the west which is my direction home, I was exhausted by the time I got to s-Hertogenbosh. Most of the way I was only able to keep a speed of 21-24 km/hr, so it took me over 2 and 1/2 hours to get home.

This is again 109.39 km and I feel this one in my legs big time!

Friday, May 19, 2006

Started in on AbTLinux design!

I have gotten some time to work on the AbTLinux design, putting together via Ruby’s rdoc a simple overview of the classes to be used based on our requirements document. It has taken a bit to get the hang of Ruby’s rcod, finding the IDE I might be using (still a toss up between vim and FreeRIDE), template the doc design I like and hammering out the classes in a form that will generate the API docs.

The key here is to stay away from actual coding, so I am just outlining the classes at this point. Based on our requirements I have a pretty good overview and it should slowly start to emerge at Abt API link on the AbTLinux site. Very curious as to how this will end up with my knowledge of Ruby being very limited. It is refreshing to design without being influenced by my knowledge of the language, but I am wondering what this will lead to when I apply OO design elements that are not available in Ruby (for example, it is missing multiple inheritance).

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Implemented ModialParser in Java

As the local bosses here seems to want to implement a Java based ModialParser, I spent the last three days porting my PHP version over to Java (1.4.2). You can find download the jar file modialparser.jar which you can run from a console (Linux/Unix for sure, Microsoft I have no idea about):

java -jar modialparser.jar

This will give you the usage.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Fine weather to finally replace that gravel path!

I have been wanting to replace our white gravel path in the backyard with a brick path. The back of our garden is connected to our patio via this path and since Isabel discovered the stones they have been going all over the backyard. We even find them in her pockets, under chairs and in the car!

Enough is enough, I started by digging out the gravel and removing the existing deteriorated anti-weed blanket that was under the path. I evened it all out, laid down new anti-weed tarp and leveled off that with some left over beach sand from the sandbox.

I started with about 50 stones I had left over in the shed and collected what I could find here in the local hardware / garden shops (about 70 more stones). This only got me a bit less than half way done as you can see. I have ordered another 170 stones (they are 10×10x6cm) which will take a week to get here. Very amazed that they are not just available as they are the most common stone used in local backyards here.

New stone path in backyard

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Another long ride

Today I took a ride on the bike to Nijmegen and back, total distance was just over 109 kms.

The trip over was great, left early with a friend that wanted to only tag along until Oss (about 20kms) but he ended up making the entire trip to Nijmegen. We went much slower than I would normally go as he is just starting out, but it was nice to have someone to chat with and he knows the route really well. He spent time in the Dutch military stationed at an old base on the route to Nijmegen. It took us around 2 hours and 45 mins to get there with a break for breakfast at about the halfway mark.
The trip home was warm but with almost no wind I was able to keep my speed up to 30 km/hr or more most of the way (used my largest outside gear blade most of the way). Made it home in 2 hours and 05 minutes! I was much more carefull of feeding and drinking this time and consumed over the entire day the following:

  • 5 peanutbutter and jelly sandwiches
  • 4 packs of yogurt strawberry drink
  • 1 liter of Gatorade
  • 700 ml of drink mix (water and syurup)
  • 4 slices of ‘pepperkoek’ (sort of dark sweet bread)
  • 2 egg sandwiches and a bowl of soup for lunch
  • 2 snickers
  • several cookies

What amazes me is that I was never full the whole day, just hungry! ;-)
Next week I have a fitness test schedualed at the hospital, something just to make sure I am fit for such exertions and that nothing is wrong with my heart, lungs, etc. The test is the same needed for a Dutch Cycle Racing License, so should be good enough for me!

Wednesday, May 3, 2006

Baby girl was helping me work on the Mini!

Working on the Mini as it has been running worse and worse. It is lagging on power and seems to be using too much fuel. I have spent the evening tracing the fault through the contact points and carburetor, but unable to find it. Made an appointment with my garage to bring it by for a look.

Even though we did not find the problem, my baby girl and I had a good time playing with the tools! ;-)