Today was my annual checkup at the eye doctor. Although this one is about a year late - if not more. Why has it been so long? I had so many left over disposable contact lenses from previous prescriptions I decided to use them all up. What the heck? I had paid for all of them and they are not cheap - so I used them!!! I actually had enough for more than a year and dwindled my supply down to my last pair.

What I discovered in the past year is that some of my older lenses allowed me to see music, read books/magazines and stare at this little monitor better than others without having to use my reading glasses. I brought that up to the doctor today and mentioned I actually prefer not having to use my reading glasses. He suggested something called monovision. What's monovision?


With monovision, you wear a contact lens on one eye to correct your distance vision and a contact lens on your other eye to correct your near vision. The lens for distance vision is usually worn on your dominant eye.

With monovision, the eye that sees well for distance vision will be slightly blurred up close and the eye that sees well up close will be slightly blurred when looking at distant objects. But with both eyes open, typically the result is acceptably clear and comfortable vision at all distances.

Therefore, the term "monovision" is somewhat misleading. The two eyes still work together as a team to see clearly at all distances; it's just that one eye is clearer than the other, and the "stronger eye" will depend on whether you are looking at something far away or up close.

Though monovision might sound difficult to adjust to, most people adapt very well and eventually don't even notice which eye is their "distance eye" and which is their "near eye."

So I decided to give it a try. We put a pair in and checked my eyes. Sure enough, one is good for distance, and the other is good for seeing up close. It's not bad, but talk to me tomorrow or in a few days. I may have adapted, or will be growing crazy to get back to a normal pair.

The brain is supposed to adapt to this and you get used to it (takes one to four weeks). I will go back next Friday for a follow up to see if I like it or not. If not, then I'll go back to a pair that is good for distance and will resort back to my reading glasses.

Bike Matters...


Dos Niner size XL with carbon rims, Nobby Nic 2.35's and Cane Creek bar ends for power climbing up long and wide trail (like Lake Ahquabi).

I removed the bar ends this week after hooking one on a tree at Ponca last Saturday when cutting a sharp corner at speed. To be honest, in a singletrack race I simply don't use the bar ends on the climbs. Sure, on gravel rides, pavement climbs, and double track climbs I love having them and use them often. But not on singletrack - no chance to use them with my bar width and keep the front wheel where I want to keep it on the power grunt, out of saddle, full out climbs on the cow paths.

I think I am officially tossing in the towel with regard to riding a hardtail 29"er off road for racing. I've tried everything to make it work the past couple of years. Thudbuster LT. Thudbuster ST. Standing more often. Out of saddle more often. Big fat 2.35's and 2.4's (actually this is the best help, just not enough clearance in the rear of the Dos Niner to prevent a bit of frame rub). The bike is light (my XL weighs 24 and change with big tires), and is super fast. But here's the catch - only on lap 1 is that the case. Then the beating takes a toll on my back and I end up fighting the bike to the end of the race wishing the race was just over. Don't get me wrong, I've done more racing on the Dos than any other bike the past 8 years. And I won last weekend in Nebraska at the always difficult Ponca State Park course on the Dos, but my back was exploding in lap 2 and 3.

I've been training non-stop for 3 weeks on the Dos. And I ride the ultimate HT all the time for training - my road bike! And none of this "hardtails teach you to pick good lines" bullshit. I've been riding bikes since the mid 60's and certainly know how to pick a good line with any bike on any surface. Nope. It's not the lines, it's the old backaroo. I did laps at Banner this week riding it and was flying on the first lap, but as I said - then it hits. Yesterday, I took the JET 9 for the prescribed training run and a lap at Banner. (insert sigh of relief with a low, deep, pleasurable moan.....)

This is MY race bike. I already knew that, but for some reason got all enamored this year with trying to make the Dos work again. No more messing around with that hard tail malarky. I cannot go as fast and maintain the speed to be consistent with lap times. The JET takes over and dusts my Dos for the rest of the season, thank you very much.

JET ready to RACE for 2012

Summerset Shootout tomorrow at Banner Pits, then off to Wisconsin for camping and Sunday's Chippewa Valley Firecracker (an old favorite of mine that I haven't had a chance to race since 2009).

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