Third installment of our club secretary's cycling blog
NEARLY A PROPER CYCLIST
I know you will all be delighted to know that I am now closing in on the accolade of being a real cyclist. To some this may come as a surprise, to others merely a confirmation of the inevitable.
So what has caused this emotion to surface at this crucial time? The simple answer: Cleats! I am now all clipped in and motoring…sorry that is the car thing surfacing again….I am now all clipped in and moving.
I bought the appropriate gleaming white shoes with strange soles, bright yellow cleats ( technical term there ) and somewhat expensive carbon pedals some time ago now but have resisted fitting them all until the confidence and mileage had grown.
Well the journey time into work has been reduced considerably and I now duck and dive weave and wander through the articulated juggernauts, buses and mad Renault drivers like an eel on speed !!
I have even mysteriously found the big cog at the front which has increased my downhill rate to eye watering proportions (that observation is based on the perplexed glances from car drivers who are visibly wincing now as I rip past ).
And so this past weekend I felt ‘ Now is the time’….Sunday morning therefore found me easing my way gently through the estates down to the Bristol / Bath cycle path with conventional pedals turning but once
There those nearby witnessed the odd sight of your budding pro emptying from the back pack all the new stuff and fitting it at the roadside. Ensuring there was no one in the vicinity I pushed off hesitantly and for the next 100 meters or so it was all ‘Click In Click Out…Click In Click Out ‘ in an attempt to create both forward momentum but at the same time ensure the ability to come to a halt without falling over.
Now you may scoff at this but that was the other reason I had not made this change earlier… all the very helpful websites had suggested that all those who make this move will fall off at some point, as being locked into the bike is not a natural or even sensible thing to be doing and anticipating needing to stop whilst at the same time remembering to click out does not come easy.
Now my debut site was chosen carefully as it is possible to gauge distances and anticipate movements well in advance….thus my 18 mile trip found me comfortably anticipating trouble 100 yards ahead, frantically initiating the ‘Unclick mode’ and coasting to a stop from a long way out with an accomplished smile on my face.
However the problem, clearly based on overconfidence, did come last night on the journey home in the rain when I re-enacted the famous Del Boy “Bar” scene from Only Fools and Horses…( didn’t Beckham do well in the Sports Relief sketch by the way !! )….anyway….mine, in solid traffic, at a major junction and with at least 400 onlookers scored 9 for style and 7.2 on the Richter Scale…..!!!
But that tale is for next week….
Ride safely…..and please continue to support the cause…..Prostate Cancer UK.
You can sponsor Rod by visiting his JustGiving