Sunday, March 8, 2009

America's Next Top . . .

Mountain Biker??? NOT! I feel positive that I will never be America's Next Top Model or Mountain Biker. Maybe just plain "Cross-Training-Mountain-Biker-Who-Is-Not-Very-Good-At-It" would better explain my situation.

Also, I have not been mountain biking in about 20 years. Which begs the question: why today? Well, let me start at the beginning: I went out yesterday to Helen's Cycles in Santa Monica & got new pedals & a seat for Penelope. (OK, the seat is really for me.)

I also got a nice, new pair of triathlon bike shoes!! Carbon fiber!! And the best part? They didn't cost an arm & a leg! Those I bought at Cynergy Cycles.

Let me say that I had incredible assistance from the general manager at Cynergy!

I also had amazing help with everything at Helen's from a sales assistant named Joe . . . he is their triathlon specialist and was oh-so-helpful. I also bought new tires - or so I thought - for Penelope. Joe offered to have the new tires put on, but being the big girl that I am . . . I needed to do it myself.

So I got up this morning & headed for the garage to put on my new tires. Well, I found out I only bought 1 tire!! OK, I'll just start with that on the back, since the front tire wasn't really that worn.

This is my first time putting on a new tire. I have my cup of coffee, my bike pump & my new tire. I am ready to rock n' roll!

Boy - it would have been easier to wrestle an alligator! Not that I've ever done that . . . I just imagine that it would have been.

So, I get the tire on with the tube in it & start to pump it up. Huh, what is that hissing sound? OH, it is a hole in my freakin' tube!!! Not to panic, I have another tube available . . . I get the new tube out of the box & proceed to use it, when I discover it is the wrong size - it's too big! (that's what she said)

So, now I am stuck with 1 tire & 1 tube. Now how am I going to get my ride in???

Wait just a minute . . . I can use my mountain bike!! (actually not mine, borrowed from a friend.) But a bike ride is a bike ride.

I get ready & somehow wrangle my husband into going with me . . . he is a mountain biking expert, after all. Alright, he used to ride a lot 20-plus years ago, but he is still a great resource & he can identify my body if I fly off a cliff. A win/win all the way around.

I really only have one thing to say: mountain biking is way different than road biking!

I can't navigate creeks with difficult rock crossings. I can't get the gearing right going up a hill & when I do it feels like I am pulling too hard on the handle bars & popping a wheelie up the hill. My center of gravity is all off. And falling hurts like a son of a bitch!

I ended up taking two spills causing a nice big hematoma on my knee, a painful hip & a banged-up elbow! Lucky for me no one saw me fall.

I had to walk across a couple of creeks with a difficult single track & walked up one big hill. I still feel like I got in a decent workout. Just a bit banged up.

Oh, one more thing to say: No more mountain biking until after the 70.3. Then I have to keep it up for my Wildflower Sprint Triathlon. I only need to manage 9 miles on the bike portion, but I don't know what the route looks like. So I will be doing a lot more practice.

Well, it is time to go soak in the tub!

Much peace & love, TracerX

p.s. Helen's Cycles offers 20% off on accessories for L.A. Tri Club members.
Cynergy is 15% off. I was very happy with my discounts. Thanks LA TRI.


  1. are the bruises pink?
    suck it up as falling is part of mt biking and as long as nothing is broken you had a good day!!!!!!!!!

  2. I agree..nothing broken. . .just a sore shoulder.
    And, yes, maybe the bruises are, red & bloody. Dripping blood in fact. Kinda cool. I am tough. . .I did suck it up. I did have a good day. I got to spend it with my hubby.