Saturday, August 13, 2011

Old dog new tricks, linear versus curricular, masher versus spinner. What do these all have in common. Times up. After 16 years of riding a bicycle over thousands of miles in all parts of various countries I have finally switched my pedals to CLIPS (toeless clips}. Yes, that's right. I have ridden thousands miles and all that time mashing. For the uninformed, mashing is what happens when you constantly push the pedal down with alternating strokes. I mashed across the United States. The research is clear that mashing is the most inefficient way to pedal a bicycle. The reason I didn't make the change earlier is that when I first began my biking experience in 1996, following knee surgery, I tried clips and it had an adverse effect on my newly repaired knee. However, as I began my training for the East Coast ride, I was experiencing numbness in the ball of my left foot. Mashing can cause that. So I broke down and had the clips installed two day ago. The good thing is that I do not experience the numbing in my foot. The bad news is that I have already fallen which, I am told, is not uncommon for bikers who clip. Also, I am experimenting with the "spinning" technique and I'm not yet sure that it is better than my mashing technique. But, I am going to give it a try. I can always revert back to my mashing ways.
The East Coast ride begins in about five weeks and I am in full training mode. In order to replicate climbing over distance, I went to the hills south of Carbondale and did a 50 miler. There is a seven mile climb just south of the city. I have another ride planned there so I will have experience climbing with clips. Climbing is still not one of my strong points. On another note, my old roommate Hank will not be rooming with me on the East Coast ride. He choose another roommate and I guess I have to concede to his choice of roommates: his wife! I suppose I shouldn't be offended he choose his wife over me because she is far more attractive than me. Ha!! It looks like I will be rooming solo for the ride but that's okay. I'm looking forward to it. Those followers who occasionally refer to this blog, I will be blogging on a daily basis beginning September 21. For this particular ride I hope to include more pictures because I am aware that many of my followers can't read!! You know who you are!! Stay tuned for updates.


  1. Sorry about the loss of your roomie but your loss will be our gain - she is a most lovely lady and it will be nice to have her on the trip. and...I was also late to adapt on the pedals (7/8 years ago) and a couple of falls are ineveitable - just hope you don't do it in your driveway with wife and neighbors all watching.

  2. I also fell going 1 mile an hour and losing my balance.