The festive season is over and you’re now realising that you over indulged on turkey sandwiches and your children’s chocolate selection packs. No? Just me then. Time away has definitely taken it’s toll and that first ride feels like you’re starting out again as a newbie. The mind set dawned on me, but I thought “I’m experienced”, “I can handle it”. So starting the new year I thought I’d finally put on those puncture resistant tyres that I bought several months ago and replace my old thread bare ones. Job done along with a mini service. Feeling good, apart from when the other half accuses me of getting grease everywhere, “It must’ve been one of the kids”. Nailed that defense.
First ride of the year
I’ve been looking forward to it, but the reality was a lesson in bike maintenance. When you service your bike, test it before you plan to make a 12 mile journey to work. The first ride to and from work was bad, real bad. Took me 6 minutes longer than my average time. I had some great
excuses reasons lined up for this too. It had to be the new tyres with too much rolling resistance, gripping the road or that my chain wasn’t lubed up thoroughly enough. Nope the real reason was that the brake blocks were rubbing against the wheel rims a little too much, it was very gratifying to know that when that old lady passed me, it was totally out of my hands.
Partial service number 2 was a lot more thorough and this time whilst taking on the 2nd ride of the year, I felt closer to normality. Sure my legs were sorer due to not having used those muscles in a while and the climbs felt far from comfortable and there was that damned old lady damaging my self esteem again, but definitely a step in the right direction.
My take away from this whole episode was that..
- After time a way, be sure to do a thorough inspection/service of your bike. Test all the moving parts and be sure to do a test ride before you actually need it.
- Take it easy on the first ride. Don’t think you can easily pick up from where you left off. A steady pace will get you to where you want to be. If need be slow that steady pace down.
What are your experiences of getting back on the bike after time away? Do you have any tips to share on how you did this?
“The pain that you feel today will be the strength that you feel tomorrow”
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