This is turning into a Series but I think it will help to get some new riders on the right track. About a month ago- one of my neighbours got interested in bike riding. I Loaned him my old OCR and told him no pressure- Take it out whenever he wants on a local Mup and see how he gets on. Only a few 10 mile rides but 3 weeks ago I suggested he did a Pie ride with me. 20 mile ride to the seafront with a break halfway through it for coffee and Pie. The idea was that the following week we do a hill but it finished up as the same ride but about 5 miles more. So a total of around 75 miles and last weekend we were going to do that hill.
What we call the ZigZags- a series of hairpin bends up a 450 ft slope at about 8%. Problem is that there is a 1 mile drag up to it with a 3% slope so for a newbie you hit the hill tired.
9AM and we left home and several of us on different rides and capabilities and out through the lanes across the marshes to the cafe.
At the cafe it was Pie for all as it was Beverleys ride for Pie and then me and Mick started off on our trip. Two of them turned back as the pace had been a bit high for them and the fit ones were off to play on the offroad hills. Mick-My new rider is in the Orange top and Paul the real newbie is in the Black
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So gentle up the 3% and the hill started. First hairpin and Mick was in his lowest gear. 200 yards later and he was breathing hard- too hard so I got him to change two cogs higher to rest the lungs. That worked but 200yards later and he changed down again as the legs were hurting. From here on I was watching him closely and juggling to stop the lungs from bursting ot the legs giving out. Only one point and I thought he was going to stop and that was after the last hairpin. For 50 yards it went to 10% but talking to him and only 200yards to go-Don't give up now- you are nearly there And he got to the top. I told him to get off the bike before he fell off it but he had just done his first hill. His legs were like jelly and he couldn't talk but he had done it. Marvellous.
Gentle ride home and I walked him for about 1/2 mile to give the legs a rest through the shopping precinct. He needed that but back home and he had done 800ft of climbing today in 31 miles. He had climbed a mountain as far as he was concerned and to me he had. Saw him 6 hours later and his butt ached- hes legs were killing him and he had found muscles he never knew he had. But we are out wednesday evening for a Gentle ride without so much as even a slope.
And he is no longer a newbie- He is a Novice rider.