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Posts Tagged ‘fixed gear’

Day 3:
Today was a big day. We met compatriots at The Stonemason’s Arms (4.8 mi) then to the Wilton Arms (1.7 mi) for the LFGSS’s 2nd Birthday party, a lackluster affair due to weather and poor turnout. A short stop in Chinatown for dinner (terrible!!!) then over to Stockwell (approx. 6 mi) for the evening’s festivities.

Gammagoochie! was a success, at least in the respect that a lot of people showed up. We have to increase the number next time and get people out who the organizers don’t know. The Jooks of Kent and The Nuns (all-girl cover band of The Monks) play Saturday, May 2nd, that’s a show I’m really looking forward to. Each of the three organizers took turns spinning soul music, with a little rock & roll thrown in for good measure. The shows are at The Grosvenor, in Stockwell, a 10 mile ride from Ealing.

Mileage Total: 20.5 mi

Day 4:
Ealing to Hackney (with side trip to Stoke Newington), the Polo BBQ event. I was dead tired from the previous day but determined to make it and enjoy myself. I did, albeit I was a tad spacey. We thought we’d end up taking the Underground partway back but b/c of restrictions on taking bicycles into the deep tunnels, we just rode back (20 mi). KNA-ckered!

Mileage Total, four days: approximately 50 miles.

I’m feeling much more comfortable on this setup, surprisingly so, though I do get caught out on occasion taking my foot out of the wrong pedal cage and of course the light changes and I end up looking like an idiot b/c I can’t get the pedal around fast enough to take off without falling off. Haven’t fallen yet. Am on a bad gear ratio, making my knees hurts, and need to change that, ASAP. Before any more long rides. I’m giving myself today off.

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Project: Ride a Fixed Gear Bike
Objective: Get it together and become comfortable riding fixed gear or give it up and switch back to freewheel.
Time Frame: 30 days

I am giving myself thirty days from yesterday to acclimatize myself to riding fixed gear without throwing the bike off the overpass near our apartment. If, in that time, I don’t get over being locked into movement, increased fear over unforeseen road events, toe strike and (potentially) haven’t learned how to skid stop I’m giving it up and having those freewheel Campy Record hubs built onto the Mavic Open Pro rims I have. Oh, and I must ride a little bit every day.

Day One:
I don’t consider the short test ride we did the day we put the bike together to be Day One, so it is officially last night, when we rode to West Drinks at The Crabtree. Going there I was quite nervous, we went at a slower clip than normal and I didn’t talk much. The boyfriend said he could tell I was nervous, usually he can hear me swearing like a sailor behind him. Being in motion is fine, aside from the added fear over not being able to stop using my legs should something unexpected happen on the road. It’s the stopping and the starting that are a bit odd. On the way back I was much more comfortable, riding at normal speed with the other guys, climbing hills happily and enjoying myself. We even were shown a new way back that shaved about 10 minutes off the route!

Day Two:
Short jaunt to our terrible LBS (local bike shop) to purchase black bar tape that I was assured they had when I called to check on it. After a slightly dorky moment getting off the curb when I had to make a right turn and forgot about the traffic direction thing I was off to Ealing Broadway. When I got to the shop they didn’t have what I wanted. I might have complained but it wasn’t really a big deal and it got me out on the bike.

When I got back, we had a visit from a fellow forumunger getting a massage from the boyfriend; he made us espresso, properly (I’d been burning the coffee and he showed us how to use the cafetiere the right way), and I am now whacked out on caffeine and listening to a friend’s getting ready to go out mix, titled You’ve Got to Look Good to Feel Good. Dancey stuff that will be greatly enjoyed by another friend, I’ll have to pass it on.

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