“Reality continues to ruin my life.”
― Bill Watterson, author of The Complete Calvin and Hobbes
The short story is: I did not get Big Blue.
The long story is below.
We don’t have the kind of lifestyle where I can just pluck $450 from the ATM and buy a bike from Craigslist. Sometimes I forget this. Okay, okay. I forget this most of the time.
See, I work part time, and there is a trade-off with that luxury. I get more time with my son and more “me” time, but less money to spend on extra things…like bikes.
So, after an honest discussion about money on Thursday night with my husband, and — I won’t lie — some tears, I e-mailed the owner of Big Blue and told him I wouldn’t be coming to the test ride on Friday morning. (And I’m only slightly bitter that the same amount I needed for a new bike went to dental work for the dog the day before.)
By later that same evening, though, I felt okay about it. I do already have a bike after all. It’s just not very fast. It’s just not a road bike.
I decided to go on a 10-mile ride on Friday morning on my mountain bike — you know, the bike I already own. I left before 7 a.m. and it was glorious, if a wee bit cold. I swear, I did not warm up until midday!
Riding a mountain bike will be my thing, I decided, while setting money aside to get a road bike in a few weeks or months. And so I took my Trek in to our local bike shop for a tune up. First gear hasn’t worked in some time, and if I was going to be riding more, I needed to get it fixed.
Also. I really hate pushing my bike up hills.
I got my bike back on Sunday, and I was able to go for a quick 5-mile trail ride on Monday before a 3-mile run. Later that day, I went to the library and got myself Every Woman’s Guide to Cycling by Selene Yeager. I am loving it! I promise to review it when I’m done.
I always used to hate the bike, but for some reason, I’m really loving it. I can’t put my finger on why, though. Guess I’ll have to keep on looking. Maybe I’ll find it and my road bike at the same time.
Wow that sounds like a great book! Does it have info for HOW to ride and change gears?! My goal is to start biking to work. yes I know winter is coming. I AM crazy. ha.
I think it does, Karla! I will let you know for sure! I wish I could bike to work, but I have to pick the kiddo up after work — I think it’s great you can.
Sorry to hear this, but it sounds like you will get one, just might take a little longer. Something to look forward to. I have been biking more lately and have found that I like it mort than I thought. Maybe there is a road bike my future also. Hang in there, your bike is out there waiting for you.
I’m a big believer in things happening for a reason. So maybe Big Blue was not for me; maybe someone else needed it. Wonder what it is about biking that’s growing on us.
I am not a fast runner, but I can fly on the bike. I think that may be part of it. I love how that feels.
I don’t really know what I can do on a road bike yet. The fastest I’ve been able to get up to on the mountain bike is like 15 or so mph (and only for a little while). But, I’ve been reading Selene’s book and I think I need to make some adjustments to the seat, etc. Also, it just got tuned up so I can now use some lower gears for hills, which will be nice!
Awesome outlook! I love that you’re out there riding, even if it’s not the bike you want to be riding.
Girl I feel ya I feel ya! We don’t have that luxurious lifestyle either 🙂 BUT it does make us more grateful I believe when we are finally able to enjoy what we’ve been craving. It also reminds us to be content in the meantime. Lol not that its easy. And I love the library! That’s where I’ve read most of my running books. I feel so smart just walking in there heehee 😉
Our library is tiny, but I just happened upon this book. So glad I did!
Sorry about Big Blue. Have you already put slicks on your mt. bike? That definitely helps it scoot along more like a road bike than a mountain bike.
I didn’t know you could do that. Thanks for the tip!
I feel your pain. As a single mom, I have to make tough choices about what I can afford all the time, plus try and teach two teens and a teen-wannabe the difference between “need” and “want,” a lesson I myself have trouble with all too often. I plan to start training for a tri next spring, and it is likely I will be out there rocking my $88 WalMart Special for the bike leg! Look at it this way – get fast on your Trek and you’ll FLY on a road bike! And Selene’s book is AWESOME btw (yes, that was a Need!).
Hey, whatever works! You rock it, lady! Good idea about using the Trek to train and then transition and be faster on the road bike, too!
I read about people going out for an easy 25 (or more) mile ride, and I wonder, why does 10-15 miles seem like so much work? Oh yeah…because I’m riding a hybrid. I can’t justify buying a “real” road bike, as I don’t need it, but it would be nice to go fast(er)….
I was reading Selene’s book about bike fit. I know I definitely need to adjust mine. Maybe that’s all you need, too. We could do a 25-er, right?
Keep at it on the mountain bike, that’s how I got started with 10 mile rides on the mountain bike following my hubby on his road bike. You will appreciate the road bike even more once you get one and maybe it will be even better than Big Blue!
I’m glad you’re learning to love your bike! Do you have a good bike shop? My bike appears to be broken. How much does it cost to get your bike fixed? I know nothing about anything.
Well, it depends. They charge an hourly rate, and then parts. I have to pick my husband’s bike up tomorrow (it was broken), so I’ll let you know!
Bummer about not getting Big Blue 🙁 I know what you mean about the trade off of not working full time for more child/you time but less luxury. Since I decided to stay home after my daughter was born that created less “fun” money for us but we still manage to sneek it in when we can. I have a mountain bike too which has made me shy away from training for a Tri but I guess it wouldn’t be that bad especially knowing you are doing well with it 🙂
I guess I’m figuring out that there is more to going fast that goes along with cycling — like just learning how to really manuever a bike. Know what I mean? I realize a mountain bike will be very different from a road bike; but being out on the road, dealing with that sort of thing, is the same.