lykomancer: (Older sucks)
[personal profile] lykomancer
Only, I sort of fail at it.

At least now I have a bike that is the proper size, thanks to Angela and a good deal of patience. (Mostly Angela, though.) And I like my bike. It's not ugly and it gives of an aura of good personality-- that of a stolid, yet slightly mischievous horse*.

I have now learned several things in quick succession:

1) My inner thigh muscles only get exercised when I do two things: sex and bike riding. Those muscles are weak and tremulous like a baby's middle finger.

2) Stretching and drinking water helps immensely
Still, I'm amazed at how much it helps. It's not a little bit. It's the difference between biking four miles with some stiffness or around the block with screaming cramps.

3) Somehow, I misunderstood my shifter and was constantly riding in super-low gears.
I'm no longer trying to bike in the bottom tier of gears, which also helps.

That said, I don't think I'm shifting correctly. I'm a bit confused as to which shifter changes the chain to which sprocket, and it's a little hard to look while simultaneously biking. I'm pretty sure part of my problem is trying to jump the chain too far between chainwheels; I'm not shifting efficiently and as a result am causing some wear on the chain and derailer (and me). Sometimes I twist my shifter and nothing happens...and sometimes a whole lot happens and I go from working the pedals hard to simply spinning them.

One side has 6 labeled gears, and the other A whole bunch. The numbers are worn off, so I'm unsure. A lot. Am I supposed to downshift through the bunch before downshifting from 2 to 3? HOW DOES THIS WORK. BICYCLES ARE CONFUSING. THIS SHIT WAS REALLY EASY WHEN I WAS ELEVEN.

Things I need:
Head/tail light, rearview mirror, foot pump and tire gauge, helmet, water bottle holder, rack and pannier, speedometer, chain degreaser/lubricant/whatever the fuck you're supposed to put on there.

What I really need:
Bicycling 101 for Dummies.

* Her name is Horse. She's definitely a mare. If customizing her paint job wasn't a pain in the ass, I'd redo her as a palomino paint or a bay Morgan

Date: 2013-09-07 02:00 am (UTC)
go_dog_go: Stylized drawing of a person with closed eyes. Their brain and breath are visible. (keep calm & ride on)
From: [personal profile] go_dog_go

Honestly, it sounds like Horse just needs a tuneup. Huckabee does something similar with shifts where he'll skip, or delay, or just suddenly decide to change gears, and I know he just needs some work done. There are a couple of screws you're supposed to tighten/loosen to fix this, it's just a pain in the balls if you don't have one of those fancy racks to lift the rear wheel off the ground, because you have to spin the pedals and test the shifting action while you work with the screws or it'll probably get all fucked up.

Though if you just wanna see what does what, get Jinya or someone to hold Horse's ass off the ground while you spin the pedals with one hand and change gears with the other and watch what happens.

I would just leave the 6-gear side alone for a while and focus on the side with a whole bunch of gears while riding (presumably more than six?). Pretty sure you don't have to cycle through all of them before up/downshifting the other side, or at least I've never heard that advice given.

And because I just like to say it and so rarely get to, I'll repeat my favorite maxim: Shift for cadence, not for speed.


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