Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Biking Journal Day 3 | vaseline + padded pants

Taking a break at the Anacostia Skate Pavillion
Since my "inaugural" ride on Saturday I've been giving this biking thing an honest try. Three bike rides over three days and I'm still interested in riding. Every day I am getting a little more confident and capable. Who knew that because of a WABA free bike repair clinic I would be rediscovering the joy of biking?

That being said, I have learned a few things:

  • Bike people are nice people. Not only am I using a borrowed bike but when my neighbor spotted me riding around she offered me the use of her helmet. Living in world where people almost never share their things it is pretty cool that folks are so encouraging and helpful. My neighbor also gave me some good (if not slightly weird) advise, "vaseline is your friend for long bike rides."
  • Hoodies don't make for good seat cushions. Sitting on your hoodie while riding may slightly ease the discomfort of a bike seat (ouch!), but is not recommended. If said hoodie should get caught up in the bike chain you can find yourself the wrong side up on the pavement. (Another piece of advice from my neighbor.)
  • Black women do indeed bike. In riding around my neighborhood I discovered two black women who bike and they were excited (and frankly surprised) when I told them there was a group for black women who bike. Because of that exchange I am putting them in touch with Miss V to get their black girl bike on. 
  • Fix Or Ride Daily (FORD). A bike can fit in the backseat of a Ford compact but it really isn't ideal.
  • I need padded shorts ASAP. Good news: I went out on my own to look for a pair. Bad News: I came back with some platform stilettos and some sunglasses. After trying on my new kicks, I asked my co-worker for some direction (and not to a shoe store). She recommended Target, City Sports, or a bike store for a some padded shorts.
  • I can change gears. I don't know how I did it but I can. 
  • People east of the Anacostia do ride bikes. I rode through Anacostia Park today and I saw a lot of black people riding bikes. To be fair, I didn't see any BikeShare bikes but there were a lot of people riding bikes.
  • The Anacostia Skate Pavilion is pretty boss. I am almost ashamed to say that in the 5+ years I have lived in Ward 8 I never paid a visit to the skating rink in Anacostia Park. Today I did and it was pretty cool. I will definitely go there again -- and I will bike to get there. :) 
That's it for now. Will keep you up to date on my progress in future posts. 

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1 comment:

The Advoc8te said...

Thanks to my friends on Twitter I have learned that the following make good lubricants (and wont damage shorts/padding) to prevent chafing.

Queen Helene's Coccoa Butter Creme
Noxzema (who knew?!)