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Clipless, Gears, Dogs and thanks to RBR.com(8 posts)

Clipless, Gears, Dogs and thanks to RBR.comBuzzy
Dec 6, 2001 4:24 PM
Today was my first serious ride (52 miles) clipless. I also hit SheldonBrown.com/gears last night to finally understand a good up and down shifting sequence. Where I ride, we are seldom in the same plane for long. The results from the gear chart solved all of the mystery for me, and should eliminate any possibility of cross-chaining. :-(

Thanks to the gear chart, I now know which front ring to be on at a given condition and where I am going to go next.

Now, with being clipless and no longer clueless about the gears, I find riding to be mostly about cadence and maintaining good form. Exertion will come later, as I am moving away from my ankling technique learned years ago on plain old platform pedals.

I expect to be fairly sore tomorrow having pushed muscle groups that haven't been used like this before. After the soreness, I'll know what machines to hit more in the Gym.

I am still not grasping the Dog Poop off the shoe move, but I seemed to fall into a rythym that would resemble a cross-country skier, pushing (like kicking forward) as I approached the top, and some sliding back at the bottom. This move is like the Elliptical Trainers at the Gym.

I also tried knee raises, especially when I tired on the hills.

I am still far from comfortable about getting the cleat out of the pedal. At one stop, I loosened my right, then began to loosen the left as I expected to touch ground with my right, which near to the last moment, I realized had somehow clipped back in, as I was playing with the left.

I learned today that God gave us dogs to teach us to sprint. As I approached one rural yard, where the aggressive dogs have really fought the fence as I went by, I looked up and saw that the gate was open, just prior to the dogs waking up to my presence. Later down the road, I learned that the dog that may some day get you is the one that you don't hear coming. I looked back and here came this mutt, running hard, but also with his nose close to the ground. I've been around enough dogs to know that is a position to get a real good bite. He was within 30' when I first saw him, and he had not barked once. Another sprint while I attempt to call out "Nice Puppy" I thought of my water bottle later. Mental note, keep the full one on the front rack whenever in dog country. Don't let it go dry.

Also this white-bearded old man started to develop a bid habit of closing the lid on the water bottle by tapping it under his chin. When I went to take the next drink and found remnants of my beard, now locked into the drinking nib, I wondered why I never felt them being ripped out.

I continue to lurk mostly and have learned volumes.

I even know now how to buy another bike and not suffer a marriage crisis. Kudos Elefantino on a new bike and a happy wife. I found a Sirrus Pro offered by Javabikes. I now have the disease also.
re: For the dogs....NewRoadBiker
Dec 6, 2001 4:54 PM
get yourself some Halt pepper spray and the bike mount that fits it. Living in East Tennessee (no I'm not from here), it seems that every hillbilly outside of the city limits lets their damn dogs run free...which gives me plenty of sprint practice. I've only had to resort to using it once, but was very glad when I did that I had it with me.
As for the rest of your message, congratulations on your ride! :o) Also, I agree, this forum is a great place to learn! Happy riding!

-Darren

http://DarrenEllis.com
Darren@DarrenEllis.com
Halt For the dogs....Buzzy
Dec 6, 2001 5:29 PM
As an old mail man, I know what Halt is, messsy pepper spray. with my luck, I'd just spray myself. Instead of Halt, I'd rather resort to my CCW permit. Now if I could only fit my HogLeg inside my bike shorts.
As to the "scraping dof poop off the shoes"...brider
Dec 7, 2001 9:00 AM
Sounds like you have that one right if you're duplicating the foot motion of the eliptical trainer.
Congratulations, &.....Len J
Dec 7, 2001 1:01 PM
regarding clipless.

Try this at the next light:

Unclip the left foot,
Rotate pedals so right pedal is at 6 o'clock (down),
Stand up on pedals (with right pedal down) as you slowly brake,
As you stop, put down your left foot & lean left.

Repeat this several times in front of your house and it will become second nature. It has the added advantage at a light that if you do unweight in the wrong direction, you will fall away from traffic (to the right). Also, don't worry about falling, believe me you will, as all of us still do occasionally when we are not paying attention.

Len
Fall Right, not Left, Okay, I think I have itBuzzy
Dec 7, 2001 1:27 PM
Len - you are a good teacher, taking me through each step, then re-enforcing the good sense in choosing to unclip left and not right. Of course I have to work to break an old habit of choosing to step down on the right being right-handed.

If us Newbies will remain humble in our ignorance and demonstrate that we are making an effort to learn, the veterans do step forward and give the advice learned the hard way by some.

Thanks, I sure want to keep my head out of traffic.
I have fallen......Len J
Dec 8, 2001 7:21 AM
and always at the most inoppurtune time, in front of neighbors, good looking women & worst of all my kids. It is always because I am not paying attention, and it sure teaches the humility you spoke of. I can count on one fall a year on average, so far this year 4500 miles without. (probably the kiss of death).

Good luck & stay at it.

Len
you're readynutz
Dec 7, 2001 1:04 PM
try a trackstand,,, pretty easy really