This week I made the upgrade to real bike pedals and shoes for my road bike. With the mild winter we’ve had, it’s easy to imagine myself out on the road soon and not stuck in yet another spin class. I want to be ready for outdoors, and a friend invited me to come with her and ride on the Computrainer at her club. It was kind of exciting and nerve-wracking to me. Despite owning a road bike for 2 years, I still know shockingly little about it. I can’t change a tire, and I wouldn’t even know what I need. I can hardly change the gears successfully. I rode it with sneakers for the past 2 summers and had to do a lot of research to even begin to comprehend putting “real” pedals and shoes on it. Even then, I ended up with differing opinions. A knowledgeable friend finally took pity on me and got the pedal/shoe/bike situation all fixed up. Unfortunately, the cleats didn’t match the pedals. So when I was doing my best to put my shoe into my pedal Saturday morning, I was thinking, “How do people make this look so easy?” and trying not to die of embarrassment. I mean, I had already had to admit that I had no idea what my “wattage” was to the girl entering my information into the computer. WTF is wattage anyways?
Seriously, how do people get into biking? I feel like I have to possess an advanced degree sometimes just to understand all the equipment and potential options I could have on my bike. It’s way harder than buying a car. There isn’t a ton of straightforward information out there on the internet about beginning biking in my opinion. When you go to a bike shop, you basically have to admit you’re the village idiot and hope someone will have mercy on you.
I had the luck of purchasing my bike from the .000001% of bike shops that have a female owner or staff member (the very awesome Jeff and Dominique at Colorado Bike Service). I got clued in to an essential piece of information regarding bike attire. It was something I had pretty much figured out myself, but it was nice to have some confirmation. Consider this a PSA for innocent chicks who think they might want to bike.
DO NOT WEAR UNDERWEAR WITH YOUR BIKE SHORTS.
Some of you are chuckling now because you think this is obvious information, but I can confirm that it is not. There are women out there suffering traumatic injury due to the scarcity of information surrounding proper bike attire. I mean, who cares if you have on a jersey or a T-shirt? Bike “experts” should be zeroing in on real safety and protection, in my opinion.
You can look forward to more helpful tips as I get out on my bike more. And you can thank me later!