Tuesday, March 13, 2012

It’s Spring – Time For Outdoor Cycling!

Yes, I know that, if you’re mas macho or live in California, you’ve been riding outside through the winter, leaving us wimps on the trainers indoors. Even with the mild winter, I rarely ventured outside, so I’m excited to head outdoors again.

Source: http://shebicycles.files.wordpress.com/

Spring time is when I take inventory and decide what I needed to do to get ready. One thing for sure – after a winter’s worth of riding on the trainer with one set of tires, I’ll need to find some new ones. Most people will use a cheap tire for indoor riding, but with 2000+ miles on this pair, I planned on replacing them anyway, so I left them on.

Other ways to get ready for Spring riding:
  • Clean your bike – getting rid of all the dust and grime will protect the parts and make them work correctly and be less likely to fail.
  • Loosen, remove, then replace seats and seat posts, so they don’t freeze into the one position.
  • Using a torque wrench (you really should own one), tighten all fittings to recommended tightness – don’t overtighten (this is where the torque wrench comes in), which can lead to cracking or failure.
  • Take some time to look over the spokes and spin the wheel to check for trueness.
  • Really check out your tires – this is literally where the rubber meets the road. Spending some money on new tires is cheap insurance. Good tires will make cycling more enjoyable and safer to boot. Before riding, inflate them to the correct PSI.
  • No benefit to having great tires if you can’t stop – before heading out, check the brake pads for alignment and wear. Replace if you have any concerns.
  • Find a race that’s 2-3 months away that will give you motivation to ride.
  • Find a training plan that fits your goals and the amount of time you have to train.
  • Make this the year you find a coach!

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8 comments:

  1. My abbreviated version:
    1. Take bike to shop for them to do all the things Kovas told me.
    2. Pick a race and train the best you can.
    3. Ride until your butt is numb. Yay!

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  2. Amen to the torque wrench, I've seen many a cracked stem and sheared bolt when people tighten things too much.

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  3. Today would be a great day to CLEAN up the bike. Western Oregon woke up to 3 inches of snow. Not normal.

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  4. That looks very positive for spring. Our summer is over and the morning runs are getting cooler and darker every day. The days are still warm.

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  5. I managed two trainer rides this winter, so I'm pretty sure my tires will be ok. And my road bike will be visiting my "mechanic", who one of these days is going to make me learn to do all that stuff myself (which would be a good thing). Maybe you or Patrick should come this way and tutor me. :)

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  6. Ha - luckily I don't have to go far for my "mechanic" to check out my bike:)

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  7. Add me to the group that never put my bike on the trainer. It was glorious out there today. I really should check my tires though...and the brakes.

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  8. Yeah, I need to hook myself up with some new tires and get that thing off the trainer... it's too nice outside to miss and I'm sure it's going to be snowing in week over here...

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