Heart Rates During MUni Ride

I hope some of you find the following link interesting:


You can view my heart rate data at specific distances and times on my most recent MUni ride at Brunswick Nature Park outside Leland, NC.

I am a 53 year old male with nearly no cartilage in the left knee, two herniated discs in my lower back, and exercise induced asthma. I am in decent physical condition, but not above average by any means.

I used to panic when I would find myself standing in the woods after an unplanned dismount that caused me to launch out into the trees and sprint to keep my feet under me while my heart rate spiked to 160 beats per minute. Now, I just pick up my 26er, recover to 140 BPM, and continue the fun.

I don’t want to know what my heartrate is. Ignorance is bliss… no wait, ignorance hurts all the same in this case.

I hear you though. I’ve torn my meniscus 3 times (all pre-uni), my knee sounds like gravel, and even though I haven’t had anything specific happen to my back the back always hurts for about 48 hours after a technical muni ride. Fortunately the knee doesn’t prevent me from riding though. At one point the only time my knee didn’t hurt was while I was actively riding.

Do you ride with JTurner? He’s in the Wilmington area when he’s not out traveling the world. Also, if you’re ever looking for others to share your pain there are several riders in the triangle area, all skill levels… from beginner to :astonished: .

I don’t know if anyone can really ride with JT when it comes to MUni, which is pretty much all I do. Mr. Turner has a love affair with his 36er that leaves him hauling butt into the distance so the two of them can be alone together. I cannot conceive of keeping up with him. He rides sections on a giant wheel that I struggle to clean on a 26er. Don’t get me wrong: he is the nicest person you will ever meet.

I posted this link with the hope that JT would counter with the dual lap summary of his Garmin Connect upload from Brunswick Nature Park.

Where should I go in the Triangle region to ride intermediate level MUni trails?

Warning: words.

Lake Crabtree County Park: The best location to ride for beginners to intermediates. There are 6 loops (numbered) out there plus the various trail connectors. Most of the trails are ideal for beginners; portions of where loops 3 and 4 connect and loop 6 are good for intermediate work.

It’s a well maintained trail and in fact most of the complaints about the trail from our group is that the trails are a bit over-sanitized. They will periodically go in and remove exposed roots or reroute the trail to be a bit easier. It’s nice to visit a trail several times and know where the hard spots are and use them to measure progress but it kind of stinks when they go in and clean it up out from under you. “I’m going to clean that section this time.” “Crud, that section is gone now.”

I think the goal of Crabtree is to be as inviting to people starting mountain biking as possible. I’m glad it’s there since it was a nice place to cut my teeth. There’s also a very small skills area that offers jumps (for bikes) that for uni are semi-steep, short hills for burst climbing practice and skinnies.

Harris Lake County Park: A little further down the road (New Hill, NC) but another nice trail for beginners to intermediate. Their loops are labeled beginner, intermediate 1 & 2 and advanced. The advanced loop really isn’t all that advanced, it’s just longer than the other trails. A bit more than twice as long as both intermediate loops put together.

There are fewer climbs here than even Lake Crabtree, which is really saying something. They also have a small skills area, the only useful obstacle that I’ve found is their one skinny. It has ascents/descents and turns though, so that’s nice.

Umstead State Park: No single track here, just several miles of double track. This park also connects to Lake Crabtree. The challenge here is that there are several climbs. Some are marathon, slow climbs that last over a mile, some are shorter but more intense. Even though it’s double track this place will wear you down.

There’s also several (20+) miles of single track hidden between Lake Crabtree and Umstead. These trails start out at intermediate and go from there. One of my more favorite tracks is an intermediate one but the problem is that it’s always the last to dry.

Seriously, there’s no shortage of spots to ride. You can park in one spot and have access to 50+ miles of riding ranging anywhere from greenways (many miles), to double track (12+ miles), to single track (30+ miles). A nice little of everything destination.

I better start taking advantage of it more often.

Anyway, if you’re ever in the area just let people know in advance. There are several active riders in the triangle area. Also, if you’re looking for someone that’s slower… look no further. :wink:

Hi all,

I’ve been reading this forum for a long time but managed to create a user account only recently. Anyway, I noticed that this thread involves riders from NC and I’d like to ask if anybody would be willing to show me some muni trails close to Wilmington. I’ll be on a work trip to Wilmington on 1st to 7th June. Unfortunately I won’t have much free time but it looks like Sunday 2nd June would be completely free for unicycling.

Bringing my own helmet and other riding gear is no problem but I’d like to borrow a muni. I’m familiar with 24", 26" and 29" munis. I prefer nice single trails and I believe I have rather good technical muni skills as well as physical condition.

Best regards,

PolarMuni: I will be happy to assist you with your MUni needs during your stay in Wilmington. Just send me a note as your arrival date nears, and we can arrange to meet so I can lend you one of my unicycles. I have a good friend who is in product development for Kemira out of Finland, but he moved to South Carolina.

jbtilley: Thank you for your summary. I wish more people would follow your lead and post about areas to ride. Maybe we should make a suggestion to the Unicyclist.com administrators about a permanent thread listing riding areas for each state. It is difficult to find real-world descriptions of riding areas. I visited the Hickory area last November, and started to ride a trail system out of the town park based on information gleaned from a mountain biking website. A biker saw me riding to the trails, and stopped me and gave me advice on where to ride. He scared me out of my socks when he told me that the trail I intended to ride was extremely dangerous with nearly vertical climbs and descents. The website had 4 year old information, and did not describe the new trail!

It would be nice to get trail reviews from a unicyclist’s point of view. I’ve seen it go both ways when comparing notes with bike riders:

Unicyclist - All those roots eventually wore me down.
Bicyclist on full suspension - What roots?
Bicyclist - Too much up and down, up and down. The trail had no flow.
Unicyclist - What a great trail!

Maybe do something similar to the map of user’s location but do it for trails and provide an option to enter reviews?

Hey Jim, I have the same Garmin as you but I didn’t get the heart rate monitor. I wasn’t familiar with them and didn’t see the need. That’s cool the detailed info you get. I haven’t even uploaded any of my Garmin info, I just use it to track rides as I do them. I’m avoiding being sucked into the Strava world. I waste enough time on here, Facebook, emailing, etc, haha.

After researching the heart rate monitors I see their usefulness and would be another great training tool, especially since I’m bent on keeping up with those darn weirdo 2 wheeled cyclists with their fancy derailers and such, ughh!

Count me in too, I’ve got extra unis as well. I may ask for the returned favor as my fiance is planning our honeymoon to Finland in the dead of winter! She keep yammering on about sleeping in an iglo, snowshoeing, sleigh rides, reindeer, snowmobiles, etc. (Well ok I requested snowmobiles.)

Ben, thanks for posting the info about the Raleigh trails.

Jim, maybe we can ride up together sometime and meet up with Ben and others. Then we can entice them to come ride in Wilmington sometime as well. :slight_smile: We could ride the trails and maybe have a cookout at my place and set up some trials obstacles in the field at my house? Or just trails, either way, ours are limited but alot of fun nonetheless.

I’ve used Strava for this type of thing. When I’m going to visit friends or family I zoom the map in to their location and it shows all rides posted in that area. No descriptions really but you can tell by the distances, times and elevation changes what your getting into.

In our perfect unicycling world there would be a unicycling specific option on Strava!

It can be depressing :(, I mean encouraging :), too when you compare your times with other cyclists at your local trails.

Thanks, I’ll contact you before my trip! As for the honeymoon I’d happy if I can help you in any way and I can quarantee that in the middle of winter the conditions in Lappland will be totally different from what you have in Wilmington :smiley: Below is a photo of me unicycling on sea ice during winter in -28 C temperature (that’s -18 F). However, I have to admit that this photo wasn’t taken in Lappland but almost 1000 km more South.

Works for me. It would be better to wait until it warms up a bit so I can give the family something to do while I’m off doing my thing. They’d probably give me looks if I went to the beach without them.

Also, I only posted up info on official, sanctioned trails that I’ve ridden. There are several more sanctioned trails in the triangle that I haven’t ridden. I also referred to 20+ miles of other, hidden trails where I left no detail. Those are probably the funnest.

And sorry PolarMuni (fitting name), but:

I would like to be the videographer for any gatherings in the Wilmington area. Sure, I would like to ride as well, but I would much rather film everyone riding some of the trail sections at Brunswick with my helmet cam and additional stationary cameras. How cool would it be to have three or four guys ripping through the advanced sections, JT?

If anyone plans on visiting Wilmington, and wants to ride while they are here, then feel free to contact me for the use of a one-wheeler. No cost or strings attached. Just trying to re-define Southern Hospitality for the unicycling.com community.

JT: there are some really great built-in features at connect.garmin.com. Too numerous and detailed to try and explain here. The other useful program is MyTracks from google. This app uses the GPS in an Android phone to track your ride for the day, and then watch on Google Earth. Best of all: it is free! Two Wheeler Dealer sells the Garmin Heart Rate Monitor strap.

“Meanwhile in Finland” that’s hilarious Ben!

That would be very cool! Get that posted on the Cape Fear SORBA (our local mt biking club) page and get some of those curious mt bikers on a uni! We could share videography duty, you gotta get in there too. Thanks for the Garmin/heart rate info, I’ve put a HR moniter on the wish list.

Yesterday I set a personal best record on my 36er and my mt bike for the full looops at Brunswick! 38 minutes and 29 minutes, respectively! Hadn’t ridden the bike out there in a long time and wanted to see if I was as slow as I remebered. My uni time on Strava would rank me 60th out of 92 riders. Next goal is the top 50 with a sub 35 minute time.

That’s awesome! Look forward to hearing from you.

Hi Foundwood,

It looks like a nice ride. I have used an application called “ascent” to plot and track Garmin data and I an happy with it if you want to try something different. One part about your data plots I do not understand: your heart rate does not correlate well with the hills. I have been doing road riding on my unicycle recently (36") and the elevation plot and the heart rate plot are clearly correlated.


Looking forward to watching the vid. :sunglasses:

You guys have fun. :smiley: