Inaugural Commute

Today was my first commute with my new bike.

I learned that "hold it like a goofy giant" is not an awesome pose.

This is the third bike in my adult life. It is a cyclocross bike, which I think of as a road bike with just enough trail capability to let me ride where I want. It's probably also the first bike I've had in 10 years that has a frame big enough for me.

I spent the entire 5 mile ride to work figuring out how to cope with the new hand positions and gear shifting offered by curvy handlebars (something very alien to me).

Aside from the bump at mile 3, very bike friendly.

Once I got to work, a cool happening took place. We filled up the corporate bike rack. This led to a corporate facebook post. People were excited.

Before the racks, we left scuff marks on EVERYTHING.

Around this time, I started to scrutinize my bike's build and become a bit less enchanted with my local bike shop. They had delivered the bike I asked for, but their professional assembly was mediocre. The brakes were not adjusted well at all (poorly centered, weak) and a hand-tightened plastic component was torn up by what looked like vice grips. Not a big deal. I can fix all of that myself, but still. Where is the love?

Because I don't want to die on the street, my ride home is a couple miles longer.

And entirely uphill.

After the "to work" ride, I was much more comfortable with the shifting and I was using the dropped portion of the handle bars more naturally. Numbness in my hands and feet started in after a few miles, but that is almost certainly a matter of fit. Seat too high, etc. I'll fix it and it will be awesome.

The biggest eye-opener was how tired I was when I rolled into the garage. I haven't been running more than 3-4 miles at a time and all of the conditioning that I'm accustomed to just having "just be there" is gone. I'll be in weight lifting mode through the first half of July, but I'm excited to shift back into running training for my October half marathon in Detroit.

New bike is good. More bike commute!

Comments

Mickey said…
Nice bike rack at work. The one on the right has a shorter wheelbase like a racing frame would. I assume that's Brian's. A clutz like me would miss the wheel tracks and the resulting black mark would show everyone that I did. Once you get that bike repair stand, you can be sure the only one who touches it indeed loves it!
Mickey said…
Since you skeptical of the initial assembly, find a wrench and be sure the pedals are tight. Bad things happen if they aren't. The threads are reversed for the two. Both sides tighten by pushing the wrench toward the front if the wrench is on top.
badBarbara said…
Great blog Charlie! I googled chia seeds and came across your blog :) I'm a Detroit chick living in Green Bay ! Enjoy your training and half marathon! I decided to take a year off of that hectic training schedule, but now I regret it because 3 miles seems so hard again! Have a good day!
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