One reads about the big rides. You know those four to five hours rally points that get the media attention. We just had the latest, the Grand Fondo, from Vancouver to Whistler, where the elite rode it in just over three hours while the masses gasped through the finish line in four to five hours or more. These rides are great but none of these riders started this way and the thought of joining in such a spectacle of spandex usually leaves most of us on the couch watching it on your flat screen. We want to join in but are intimidated by the mass of lycra, bulging muscles, lean flat bellies and high end bikes.
Instead of going out and buying a spandex suit, a five thousand dollar road bike and then stretching the suit over your layers of flab start smart. Fraser River Bike Tours & Rentals has a seasons pass program or begin with an inexpensive starter bike and start with a reasonable starter ride for about an hour three times a week. Don’t save it all up for the weekend but get a couple of late afternoon/early evening rides (or early morning) as well as a longer ride on the weekend. Do this for a month and then increase your short ride up to ninety minutes for a month or so and then try and move it up to two hours. An hour ride is better than no ride and twice a week is better than a four hour make up ride on Sunday. In a few months maybe six or so you will be ready to move up to a better bike and now you will know what you want and not be at the mercy of a hard core cyclist who makes a living selling high end road bikes to overweight sedentary wanna be cyclists. There are an amazing amount of high end bikes out there gathering dust after been ridden once or twice and then assuming the place beside the other equipment you purchased after a convincing TV commercial or best intended New Year’s resolution.
A seasons pass is your best bet so you can start on a beginners bike and move up to a more aggressive style in your first six months and then going out with some knowledge and muscle tone to a local bike store and buying what you realistically need to continue on your cycling lifestyle.
Buy some spandex when you can fit into it without looking like a sausage spit out of a malfunctioning sausage machine. Simple loose fitting work out clothes are the best to start with. The first lycra you will want is a pair of cycling shorts (padded) but wait until you have had a least two weeks of riding at least two times a week.
When you do buy a bike I don’t recommend starting with a road bike but try a good cross over mountain style bike with road tires. Kevlar tires, or with puncture proof strips, are a good investment as many riding careers end with the first flat. A seasons pass gets you by all that stuff as you will always be given a bike that is in good working order. A proper CSA approved helmet is a must for as a new rider your chances of a spill are greater than a seasoned rider and a seasoned rider already knows all to well that a helmet is a necessity although this still has not caught on with some who hair style is more important to them than brain damage.
Last but not least is your bike seat. The number one reason for impotency in males under thirty five is a bad bike seat or an incident while on a bad bike seat. The number one reason for potency for those over thirty five is a healthy vascular system is regular cycling. Getting blood to where you need it when you need it should because your body can do it itself not through fooling the body with Viagra. When your body can’t get it up, it’s trying to tell you something. Getting in shape takes at least six months while popping a pill is much easier. Ask your partner in love a question. Do you want to have sex with my flabby overweight carcass with an artificial erection or would you rather wait a few months while I drop the weight and the flap until my body on the inside has the natural ability to give me a woody? If you don’t have the confidence to ask your lover, ask your doctor.
I started this path as an overweight heart attack waiting to happen with a prescription for a bike almost thirty years ago and at sixty one having a fully function body. Don’t miss understand me, it was not easy. I write about my (and your) lying cheating body. How it will begin to act out right before your ride. Your bad knee, your aching back etc etc but if you keep at it ignore those phony aches and pains which are gone once your body realizes that you are going to do it anyway and then once into your ride enjoy what your body really does love once you get started and don’t forget the big reward, that endorphin rush after about forty five minutes of exertion that makes every ok.
So get off the couch, turn of the flat screen, get on a bike, any bike to start with or come on down to my business and we will get you started on a life’s path that I guarantee will change your life in a positive way.