Hi, this post will no doubt be a bit of a laugh for some of you. I have just begun cycling in an urban environment after 15 years of not biking. I've been cycling a few times a week for a month or so now. I don't trust my bike won't be stolen if I keep it locked up outside on a bike rack, and I also want to keep it out of the weather, so I keep it in the storage unit for my apartment.
Biking around the city has been wonderful, the biggest drawback so far has been getting my bike in and out of my apartment building. To get my bike back in after a ride, I need to go up two flights of stairs, get it through 2 glass pull doors, into a tiny elevator from the 40s (no automatic door there either), out again, through a series of tight-cornered, narrow hallways in the basement, through two more locking doors, and into my storage locker. Reverse the process for leaving.
I usually wind up with at least one or two bruises on my legs as a result of manipulating my bike through all these annoying passages, stairs, and doorways. At one point I had over twenty bruises on both my legs, and I decided to take a break from cycling for a week or two to let them heal, but am right back to collecting them again as soon as I started back up. It seems to be the pedals that smack into me the most, but sometimes it's a wheel or the frame, especially when hoisting it up or down stairs. I may be the clumsiest person in the entire world, or maybe I just need some tips about how to move my bike around in tight spaces without bashing it into myself at every opportunity. I don't have a great deal of upper body strength and am a real wimp strength wise, though I am not overweight and don't take up an unreasonable amount of space (5'6" 125lbs).
I'm feeling rather discouraged and down on myself after a really bad bruise yesterday. I love biking, but I'm wondering if this nonstop personal injury is worth it. Maybe it's just part of the learning process, or maybe I'll be stuck with bruising myself every day for the rest of my biking life.
Thanks for any tips!