Friday, June 15, 2007

Indoor Cycling and New Bikes

I am so freakin' excited. The bike we've been working on building (well, mostly Nick, because he's too awesome for words) is finally done. Took it over to the good folks at Revolution Cycles for a tune-up and they were fairly impressed. Now all that remains is for me to buy the proper stem and handlebars and a blessedly women specific saddle. That won't stop me from riding it with spare parts until then, though. Pictures forthcoming, of course.

Yesterday I took my first "indoor cycling" class (it's not spinning, I was told) courtesy of some ACT Ride hook-ups with Zoned 4 Fitness. I wanted to get a better idea of just how out-of-shape I still am (and, y'know, try to improve my technique, I guess). They have many fancy CycleOps bikes, which are indeed quite nice. If I had lots of dollars, I'd probably own one for training over the winter and on those days I just can't bring myself to go outside (storms or overwhelming heat, things like that).

The session was good and sweaty, even if my bum knees were weak and feeble. Once I was warmed up, I did a great deal better. Seems it takes me a little extra doin' than most folks to really get warmed up, but I'm reminding myself that this isn't a competition. The most important thing for me to do is continue, slowly but surely, to build up the strength and endurance in my legs (and lungs) without re-injuring anything.

It's harder than it sounds. I've always been a bit, shall we say, "competitive" by nature, so realizing that it would be really very bad for me to push myself like I used to is hard to cement in my brain sometimes. This whole patellofemoral thing is rough, but things do seem to be improving.

So they put us through our paces, gave us tips about good pedal stroke, cadence, etc. And though their choice of inspirational tunes was a tad...sketchy...I felt good about the whole thing and grateful to have had the chance to try it out (free of charge, no less!).

This weekend, if all goes well, will involve one day of mountain biking adventures and one day on the road. And lots of stretching.

So much stretching.

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