Saturday, March 5, 2011
a sure fire way to hate cycling
I have been leading female cyclists on bike rides for about 5 years. In this time I have learned some sure fire things we, as women, do, that ensure we will fail at the sport of cycling.
1. First, before we even start the sport, our thinking goes like this. "I won't spend much money on a bike because I may not like it."
ok, you have already started the process of failure here, you have already told yourself that failure is indeed an option
2. You go to a bike store and apologetically ask the salesperson for help, you tell him or her that you are new to cycling and are not sure you will like the sport.
translated to salesperson, " i will most likely never bike except at the shore and then only on flat land"
3. You tell the salesperson that you know nothing about cycling, bikes or quality
again, you are now telling the salesperson that you are an idiot and plan on buying a bike with no knowledge or research
4. Salesperson drags out a large hybrid bike and proceeds to tell you how this bike is just what you need, it is durable, has thick tires, and shifters right in the handlebars, pedals do not require cleats cuz you do not want cleats, that is too hard for an idiot like you (remember, you presented this idea to him/her by declaring how little you know)
now you are really getting close to abject failure, you got the big heavy awful bike right in front of you and someone is telling you how great it is and you believe him
5. Salesperson tells you to take it for a spin around the parking lot
perfect, riding in a circle on a flat lot, bike feels great, you love it, you feel safe with those big heavy tires
6. You buy your sturdy bike feeling good. You ride around your neighborhood and feel good.
you love your bike, you buy accessories, a big bag up front and some capri pants to wear when you bike
7. You join a bike club, sign up for a club ride, you pick the slowest group thinking they will go slow like me you get there and even this slow group looks intimidating, road bikes, cleats and bike clothes
8. You head out and have a tough time, your bike cannot go like the road bikes do, you are slow and exhausted and feel terrible and are embarrassed
failure is now in full swing, you hate biking, you tell yourself your are not fit enough, you will never be able to bike like the bike club folks
Here is a better plan.....................
1. Go to bike store equipped with tons of knowledge, get on the Net and do research, start on the Terry page, watch her videos and listen to her podcasts
2. Go to several bikes stores and compare how they fit you and what they say to you
3. Look on the Net at prices of your bike at various bike stores or online stores
4. Do some research into components for your bike, here is one example
5. Then buy the bike, do not let anyone talk you out of a road bike
6. I do suggest you get the pedals that require cleats and get bike shoes, I personally like road shoes but many get mountain bike shoes
7. Get some bike clothes, at least get a decent pair of cycling shorts, your bottom will thank you
8. Join a bike club and find some like minded cycling buddies who can help you learn how to shift gears, change a tire etc
9. Do not leave home without a cell phone, ID and tire changing equipment, if you cannot change a tire, make sure you have a back up plan, someone who can come get you in an emergency, trust me, you will at some point have to call for help