A nice view from the bridge of John Yarbrough Linear Park in Fort Myers, October 2022. A great running & biking trail! Photo Courtesy of Charly Caldwell II.
With the cooler, less humid weather, here in Southwest Florida, and your bike in hand, this is the absolute perfect time to get out and enjoy the beautiful outdoors.
Few things compare to the exhilaration of riding your bike:
However, bicycling is a learned sport, and there are definitely a few tricks you should learn to ensure every ride is a success.
Never underestimate the importance of a good bike fit.
Your bike fit is paramount to comfortable and safe riding. You will go faster and much further on a cheaper bike that fits you well rather than on a spec’d out high priced model that doesn’t.
It is so important for both comfort and safety that you find an expert who can direct you properly.
Bike fit is not something you can simply read about on the Internet or trust your spouse or friends to help you with (unless they’re experts).
Riding a poorly fit bike is like trying to run a marathon in shoes that are 1 size too small or 1 size too big for you, it just doesn’t work.
Along the same thread as bike fit, do not underestimate the importance of your cleat position on the shoe.
Cleat position is paramount for power transfer and injury prevention. As a rule of thumb, your pedal cleat should be under the ball of your foot and positioned so that your shoe does not rub the crank arm as you pedal.
Having said that, everyone’s anatomy is different and getting the cleat position is so import to injury prevent that it behooves you to seek the help of a professional.
Have you ever heard the saying “you get what you pay for”? Nothing could be more true when it comes to bike shorts.
The quality of your bike shorts makes a HUGE difference in your riding comfort.
While there is a plethora of choices available on the market today, cycling shorts are not something you want to bargain hunt for.
Poor stitching, low quality materials and the shape of the cycling pad all have a big impact on comfort.
Tire pressure is a must.
Proper tire pressure is critical for minimizing flats and reducing effort. Invest in a decent floor pump and use it before every ride, every time.
Under-inflated tires are far more susceptible to flats.
If you don’t have proper air in your tires and run over a rock or a crack in the road, your tire flattens out and the tube gets pinched against the rim.
Completely avoidable with proper inflation.
Also, correctly inflating your tires means they have less contact with the ground decreasing rolling resistance. This is significant because with properly inflated tires you go faster with less effort.
Be safe and enjoy your ride!
Angie Ferguson is an exercise physiologist and Tony Robbins Results Coach from Fort Myers, Florida. She also is a Corrective Biomechanics Specialist, USA Triathlon Advanced Level 2 coach, USA Cycling coach, has a Specialty in Sports Nutrition certification, and a PhD in results!
If you're looking for continual support, direction, guidance & accountability join Angie's Monthly Program here, and we'll help you look, feel and be your very best!