I have been working at home for about 1
My home office has four general areas: my desk / workspace, musical instruments, training room and bicycle repair room. I try to keep these spaces as separate as possible, but of course they often overlap if necessary, and the open floor space in the center of the room is a universal space that can do anything.
There is undoubtedly something. there's a lot going on here so I'll break it down by area (and try to keep it as short as possible). If you have any questions about my stuff, drop me a line in the comments or on Twitter .
My Workspace: Standing Desk, Big Screen, Old Computer
I've been using some kind of standing desk for at least 7 years, though then not improvised. However, a few years ago I settled in this Bekant sit / stand desk from IKEA. It was easily the most affordable option on the market when I bought it, but nowadays you can buy a decent sit / stand desk for a lot less, which is great.
Why a sit / stand desk, you ask? Because I notice that I am more productive and think more clearly when I stand. I have had ADD / ADHD all my life and if I sit too long, I just become restless . Although I learned to deal with this as an adult, it was a real struggle for me as a child – the constant need to get up and move has always been great. A sit / stand desk is a legitimate solution for me because it allows me to stand / fidget at the same time and . And when I'm tired of standing, I can easily sit back down.
So yeah, I can't say enough good things about my desk. If you like the idea of being able to stand and work, I highly recommend picking one up – it doesn't have to be the same one I have, of course. There are many sit / stand desks on the market.
When I sit down, I use a gaming chair my wife gave me (I have no idea what brand it is), or an inexpensive stool from Amazon. When I'm lanky, I sit in the chair, but it's also easy to get lanky too, and that's where the stool comes in. It's a lot like sitting on a balance ball in that it requires core engagement to keep me from flopping everywhere. When I stand, it is on this Cubefit Terramat. It's fine for what it is, and I especially like the buttons on both sides for when I'm barefoot. It is like a massage for my tootsies.
What is on top of the desk is obviously more important than the desk itself, because I actually work there. I start here with the basics: the keyboard and the mouse. Unlike most of my colleagues, I am not a fan of mechanical keyboards. Tried several, liked one, and hated the rest. So for me, the Logitech MX Keys is where it is. It is probably the best keyboard I have ever used. Couple that with the MX Master 3 and you have the perfect combination of keyboard and mouse in my head.
In front of my face is a huge Dell 38-inch widescreen beast. I've used dual screens for years (years after years), but I've known for a long time that I eventually wanted to switch to an ultrawide. And I'm glad I did – it just works so much better for my workflow than an excessive multi-monitor setup. It's probably going back to that ADD thing – too many screens means easy distraction. With a single ultrawide, I can minimize everything I don't actively use and focus solely on my editing window. But if I need the extra real estate, it's there. Couple that with Dell's simple yet useful Display Manager and I can split this big screen into two (or more) smaller ones if needed. It is the best of both worlds.
On top of that big screen is a Logitech C920 webcam. I have this thing years, and it still looks great. I used it when I podcasted during the day (which I'd love to redo – call me if you're interested in some Review Geek podcast!), But now it's usually just for meetings and junk. I pair it with my Blue Yeti microphone, which is still one of the best microphones out there.
Below the screen you will find the excellent Polk MagniFi Mini soundbar. I had the same Harmon / Kardon speakers for about 15 years before finally kicking the bucket, and when it finally happened, I wanted something unobtrusive to replace them. This fitted the picture perfectly – it sounds great, has a separate sub with incredible bass and gets loud . That's great if I want to grab a guitar and jam along with some tunes. (Note: guitar banter is coming later.)
Then there is the workhorse: my main PC. It may surprise you to discover that I am not using the latest and most powerful PC components out there – far from it. I've been using the same Falcon Northwest Tiki for literally years at this point, with little more than an upgrade from a graphics card a few years ago. Here are some core specifications:
- Intel Core i7-4770K (Haswell) processor (3.5 GHz)
- 16 GB RAM
- 500 Crucial SSD (main), 2 TB WD HDD (storage) drives  NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 GPU
- ASUS Z871 Mobo
- Windows 10 Home
Yes, nothing to write home about. I've had it for 6 or 7 years now. It will continue to work so I will continue to use it. When the day comes when it stops working, I have to call: buy a new desktop or switch to an all-laptop-all-time setup (which is really a dream of mine). This large Dell display has numerous ports, including a 60W USB-C PD port that I can use to dock my Surface Laptop 3.
Speaking of the SL3, I think we're now can talk about laptops and other portable devices, huh? I have a few laptops that do all my hard work on the go: the aforementioned Surface Laptop 3 and a Google Pixelbook, complete with a black camouflage print.The Pixelbook was my main laptop for a few years until I finally decided it was time to buy a Windows laptop Now I have, use and love both These are the specifications of the SL3 for those interested:
- 13.5-in ch 2256 × 1504 display
- Intel Core i7-1065G7 processor (1.5 GHz)
- 16 GB RAM
- 512 GB storage
- Cobalt Blue finish with Alcantara
- Windows 10 Home  It's funny because at this point the SL3 outperforms my outdated desktop. However, the desktop is still fast enough for what I need, so it's fine. But I like to know that if I were to die today, I could just plug a USB-C cable into the SL3 and never miss a beat.
The Pixelbook is also a workhorse in itself. It's the base model, but still performs exceptionally well due to Chrome OS:
- 12.3-inch 2400 × 1600 display
- Intel Core i5-7Y57 processor (1.2 GHz)
- 8 GB RAM  128 GB Storage  Chrome OS
There are also several mobile devices in my arsenal, but I will try to keep this short and sweet.
- OnePlus 8 Pro: This is my primary phone right now. an excellent piece of hardware and eventually ( finally ) puts OnePlus in the & # 39; flagship area & # 39 ;. There are no compromises here … except maybe the sheer size otherwise it is perfect.
- iPhone XR: This is my secondary line I've been wearing the XR since the first release and it's still as fast as the first day Since I'm a die-hard Android user it has something refreshing to have the same phone for almost 2 years and not feel any delay.
- Pixel 4 XL: I haven't worn this since I have the OP 8 Pro but it's a staple Android phone so I keep it on hand for quick comparisons and other standard Android -related matters.
- iPad (6th generation) : This is usually on my desk so I can see notifications at a glance, but I also use it to run Zwift when I'm on my bike trainer. But we will tell you more about that below.
- AirPods Pro : If you ask me, these are the best true wireless headphones in the world. I use them with my Android and iOS devices and they are perfect with both.
Yes, so that's for my main work gear. Now we can talk about the nice things.
My Workout Space: Mostly Bikes and Stuff to Work on Bikes
I told the story about how I used to be big (210 pounds), then I lost a lot of weight (70 lbs) and donated a kidney to my youngest son a few times before, so I will not go into all the details here. Instead, I just say cycling has changed my life. It gave me an outlet I didn't know I needed, helped me get healthier, and taught me more about myself that I could have learned otherwise.
It's such an integral part of my life now, and I can't imagine not doing . It's a way to relieve mental and emotional stress, get away from the rest of the world, and work through my mind. There's nothing I love more than burying myself on a bike – seeing how far I can push my body is one of my favorite things to do these days (within reasonable limits, of course).
I have a few bikes that do everything I want and more: a 2018 Cannondale SuperSix Evo disc and 2017 Cannondale CAADX disc. The former covers pretty much all my workouts and fast road rides, the latter is reserved for gravel riding and I always want to be a bit more comfortable. Here are the specifications of each:
2018 SuperSix Evo Disc
- Full carbon frame / fork, size 50
- SRAM Force 1 drivetrain, 50t chainring with Sunrace 11-36 cassette
- Cannondale Hollowgram Si crankset with Stages Gen3 power meter
- ENVE 3.4 wheelset with DT Swiss 240 hubs
- Continental GP 4000 tires, 700 × 25
- Zipp SL- 70 Aero handlebar  ZIPP Service Source SL seat post, without offset
- S-Works Power saddle, 143 mm
- Aluminum frame / carbon fork, size 51
- SRAM Apex 1 drivetrain, 44t chainring with Shimano 11-40 cassette
- Cannondale Si Crankset w / Stages Gen 3 power meter
- H Plus Son Archetype wheelset with DT Swiss 350 hubs  WTB Riddler tires .700 × 37
- Salsa Cowbell handlebar  Zipp Service Course SL seatpost, zero offset  Specialized Power Comp saddle, 143mm
The CAADX was my main bike for over 3 years (over 10,000 miles on it!), And I recently set of the new Zipp 303 S wheels ordered to ride with a set of Panaracer Gravel King 700 × 32 tires for more comfortable, but still fast enough road rides. While the SuperSix is by far the bike I ride most now, the CAADX will always be one of my all-time favorite bikes.
I also have some essential information bike technology Things I don't ride without:
- Garmin Edge 530: This is my main bike computer I recently upgraded the Edge 520 to this and frankly I wish I could had done it much earlier The 530 is a massive upgrade from the 520. It has everything I want from a cycling computer.
- Garmin Varia Radar (Gen 1): The Varia Radar is a game changer ects cars coming after me and sends a notification to my Edge 530. It has a quick visual indicator that shows how far away the car is and how fast it is driving. It is not a substitute for environmental awareness, but I feel better when I ride outside. I know when cars come after me long before someone who doesn't have a radar.
- Cycliq Fly12 CE: Being a cyclist on the road is quite scary, and while the Varia Radar does an excellent job of notifying me if something comes up behind me, I want that cars come to me to know I'm there too. That's where the Fly12 comes in: it's a headlamp and a camera. I use it every day when I drive in daylight flash mode and it records everything while on the go. That way, if something happens then at least I have video evidence when I need it.
- AfterShokz Air: There is nothing as motivating as music in the middle of a tough ride, but I always want to be able to hear what is going on around me when I'm on the road. That's where the Afterhokz Air comes into play: it's bone conduction headphones, so I can hear what's going on around me and jamming to my favorite music on the bike. It is the best of both worlds. I look forward to the upcoming Aeropex Mini.
- Stages Power: I mentioned these power meters briefly in the bike specifications above, but thought they could use a little more explanation for anyone who may not be familiar with the technique. A power meter measures how hard you work on the bike (in watts). This not only allows you to quantify your fitness, but also read a much more accurate calorie burn than any app.
- Wahoo Tickr: This is my heart rate monitor. I have been using Tickrs for years now and I will continue to use them for years to come. Wahoo also just announced a new model, and I'm honestly quite excited that it breaks, so I have a reason to buy the new one.
I ride 5-6 days (150 miles) a week, and while going outdoors whenever I can – usually on weekends – most of my time on the bike takes place indoors on my trainer. My Wahoo Kickr Core is the workhorse here and is the best trainer I've ever had. It's direct drive, so it responds great when it comes to power changes, and it pairs nicely with both Stages power meters. In this way I get the same numbers indoors as outside.
I train hard with TrainerRoad, because it is by far the best way to get on my bike quickly. Even if you don't race (I don't), it can take your riding to the next level. There's also an exceptional community behind TR – the forum is full of great conversations about training, equipment and all sorts of other bike-related nonsense. But it's also one of the best communities I've ever been part of to educate each other. All (or at least the vast majority) of my fellow TrainerRoad athletes really want to see each other succeed.
But I digress – I'm talking about my office, not how great TrainerRoad is (seriously but – it's incredible).
I also run Zwift next to TrainerRoad – TR on the iPhone, Zwift on the iPad – especially for the visual aspect (and the drops). It's also great software, especially for the social aspect of cycling. It fits into a niche other than TrainerRoad, which may make more sense for some cyclists. I like them both for different reasons.
I have a trainer desk for the iPhone and iPad, as well as a towel, power supply, and everything else I use while on the trainer. It's a definite outlet from the Wahoo Kickr Desk I grabbed for $ 120 before they sold out somewhere last year. I have not seen any other similar products on the market since it disappeared, so I imagine Wahoo holding up and stopping a bit to make sure these cheaper agencies are off the market as the official counter usually costs $ 250. Weft. (If you want something like that, you can opt for a bed table.)
It took me a while to get the space myself. For the longest time, I set up and broke down my trainer every day. That was getting old, so I knew I wanted a way to set it up permanently. It took some trial and error, but in the end I decided what you see above. I removed the doors to this section from the built-in back of my office, cleaned everything up, and put in my trainer TV setup. It's a cheap Insignia TV with Roku software, but I have SHIELD Android TV running the show anyway.
Everything is out of the way, my back is on my computer so I can focus on exercising and not get distracted by thoughts of work (and vice versa). I also use the open space next to the trainer for a little strength training, usually with body weight and resistance bands. I am generally satisfied with this setup, although I would like to have a dedicated training room in our next home. It is on the wish list.
I also have a small space for & # 39; bicycle repair & # 39; across from my trainer room which is just a very small portable table with most of my bike tools on it. I got tired of setting it up and breaking it down every time I had to do something, so I set this up when I was building the SuperSix and just left it. It's largely the way, and I like having things out in the open when I need them for quick adjustments.
My Jam Space: Guitars and Stuff
Before I started cycling, playing guitar was my biggest hobby. I'm still not very good, but I like to play. It turns out that bicycles and guitars are both very expensive so I had to call: what am I focusing my time and money on? It wasn't long before I found out, and guitars have since taken a backseat for bicycles.
Since I have my office on the other side of the house, from everything else, I can crank it, jam and forget that everything else in the world exists. I try to play a little every day if I can, but it doesn't always work – it's the last on the list of things to do after all my priorities are met, so my game doesn't get the love I wanted that it happened. In general, however, I like that.
If you haven't noticed, I'm a big believer in keeping things clean and concise with frames, so here's a look at my electric guitars:
Fender Blacktop Telecaster ("The Bulls Tele ")
- Seymour Duncan Distortion / Jazz pickups (bridge / neck)
- Hipshot bridge
- Volume, kill switch
- Elixir 9-46 strings, tuned to Standard E
Fender Blacktop Telecaster ("The Red One")
- EMG 81x Bridge Pickup
- Hipshot Bridge
- Volume, Killswitch
- D & # 39; Addario 11-56 Strings Tuned to Drop B
Fender Noir Telecaster (“ The Noir ”)
- Stock Fender Pickups
- Stock Bridge
- Volume, Tone
- Elixir 9-46 Strings Tuned to Standard E
ESP LTD F-400 (“The F ”)
- EMG 81/81 Pickups (Bridge / Neck)
- Tonepros Bridge
- Volume, Killswitch
- D & # 39; Addario 12-60 Strings Tuned to Drop A #
I use the different guitars for different things (obviously), but right now The Red One is my favorite. Drop B is my favorite tuning in general, and the EMG 81x in the bridge has a mean growl that I just can't get enough of. Still, if something happened and I could only keep one, it would be The Bulls Tele because it's the most versatile. That guitar can cover a wide range of genres and sound good on all sounds.
I also have some acoustics, an Ibanez or something else and an old Dorado I don't know about. My grandfather gave me the last one when I was 13, and it's the guitar I learned to play on – it's been around the block a few times (as you can see), and I never play it now. But it is sentimental.
The Ibby is my "most important" acoustic guitar, and I go through stages of picking it up and playing with it. I notice that my desire to play acoustic is a direct reflection of what I've been listening to lately. So if it's a lot of metal, I play the red all the time. But if I've been in a bluegrass mood, you'd better believe the Ibby gets a lot of love.
I went through a stage with several amps a few years ago, but it all ended with the Boss Katana-Head (Mk I). Since I'm just a home player and don't have to worry about gigs and stuff, it does everything I could want and sounds incredible doing it. It is versatile, noisy and easy to use. But perhaps best of all, it is cheap . I've had it for a few years now and still don't understand how a $ 350 head can sound so good.
I combine the head with a 2 × 12 Avatar cabin loaded with Celestion Vintage 30s. I know that's an exaggeration for a home guitarist, but I got a lot out of it six or seven years ago and see no reason to shrink. In the long run, I would probably lose money anyway.
Finally my pedal board. It's about as easy as a sign can get: a tuner, a wah and my trusty Digitech Whammy DT. I use the Whammy a lot, but I especially like this for the DT – Drop Tune feature. This means I can play with anything I want, no matter what guitar I play or what mood it is in. I use this function all the time . I used to have a much bigger board with several superfluous pedals, but now I do pretty much anything unrelated to the Katana.
When you have come this far, I congratulate you. That had been read for a long time with a pretty eclectic mix of things everywhere. If you have any questions about any of my stuff, how I use it or anything else, feel free to ask in the comments or call me on Twitter and I will answer.