Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Napa, California
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riding fixed gear isn't any harder than a single speed. it is way more limiting though. which can be easily seen by going down a steep hill, as much as you think you are "coasting", your legs are actively slowing you down, and you will get passed by anyone on a bike that can coast. handling is also compromised by the inability to coast.
I commuted by a fixed gear with both brakes for two years, looking back I needlessly made certain things harder on myself.
I used to ride minimally like the OP. then I wised up and put fenders and a rack on my bike.
riding with a backpack sucks to the nth degree. but sometimes you don't realize it until you give a rack/panniers a fair shot.
I'd rather take a ten pound rack and bag set up, instead of a three pound backpack any day of the week.