Introductions - Hola! From Lubbock, Tejas
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Hi! I am a 53-year old who never rode a bike until 5 weeks ago, and I am an addict. I ride a '95 Raleigh M-80 (steel frame) and an '88 Schwinn Worldsport, while refurbishing a Premis ('88) and a '78 Raleigh Super Grand Prix. A '95 Trek 835 and '69 Varsity also lie disassembled on my workbench. More are expected.
My goal is to ride singletrack (20+ challenging miles right here in Lubbock parks), get fitter, and eventually do 40 miles or more both road and MTB.
But streets and cars scare the heck outta me. This is not a big city, but two cyclists have been killed in the last year or so in separate events. So I ride the streets only on Sunday mornings when the aggressive and the inebriated are sleeping in. It's hard to put in serious road mileage that way.
11-18-05, 11:49 PM
it's less scary if you ride in groups... try the saturday morning "yard sale" ride from broadway bikes, it's nice and easy pace (sorta)
there's also the tuesday night crit... no cars out there
rides go out all the time, welcome to cycling!
p.s. sounds like you have a nice collection going there, lol, i currently have 15 bikes (counting by frames, only 6 are complete right now) so let me know if you need anything ;)
Thanks, WearYourTruth. I may show up for those soon.
11-21-05, 05:20 AM
Welcome to the forum! Say "hi" to Buddy for us all!!
11-29-05, 11:37 AM
Getting over the fear of cars/traffic was my own greatest hurdle 30 years ago, and it was the hardest part for my wife just recently. She's a newbie like yourself. The others are right: group riding is the best way to get acclimated. It'll also force you to push your pace just a little -- or at least keep you from slacking excessively -- so that you're a little more demanding of yourself when riding solo.
Some suggestions: CONCENTRATE. Try to develop your awareness to the point that you are really plugged into everything happening around you. Difficult in dense or commuter traffic, but the more you ride, the more you'll get what I mean. ANTICIPATE. Assume the cars and trucks are piloted by utterly unpredictable fools. A fair percentage of them actually are. Think FOR them and behave accordingly. Conversely, ride "friendly," to rip off an old Texas Dept. of Transportation slogan; be polite and considerate to everyone, even the resentful old geezers and rednecks. A smile and a wave can go a long way. BE VISIBLE. Can't stress this enough. Wear loud jerseys -- I prefer high-viz yellow, screaming pink, or white. Use blinking lights even after daybreak or before sunset. Finally, USE YOUR EARS. Unplug yourself from the walkman or MP3 player, and use your hearing to warn you about what you can't see. Maybe invest in one of those little helmet-mounted rearview mirrors. Their cheap, they work, and you'd be surprised how much they help. I never ride the tandem without mine. When two-up, I suddenly become responsible for someone besides myself...
Welcome to the brotherhood, and have a great time bucking them West Texas headwinds.
11-29-05, 11:42 AM
I had a professor at the University of Louisville who used to teach in Lubbock. He was always talking about how cold it got there. He said there was nothing to block the wind between the North Pole and Lubbock but a three strand barbed wire fence.
11-29-05, 11:55 AM
My granddaddy said that there were two fences, actually, but the cows had knocked one of 'em down...
11-29-05, 10:14 PM
Welcome to the Forums,
situational awareness is key to overcoming fear of your potentially deadly surroundings.
I typically do not ride around or in much traffic. We don't really have much traffic around these parts.
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