I started working as the Graphic Designer at Terry Bicycles in August of 2010. I have always been a mountain bike owner and recreational rider, but it wasn’t until working here at Terry that I desired to get on a road bike. Having the proper gear is half the battle in starting a new sport and I have certainly come to the right place. Now that I have a road bike and have access to the best women’s cycling gear I am ready to get my butt on a bike and ride much more often. I have always liked going fast! Come back regularly to read “The New Rider” series for my very raw and uncut take on becoming a cyclist. We all have to start somewhere and here I am!
Before I bought my bike I watched Georgena’s fit videos and asked her what size bike would be best for me. I went for a ride with my husband this past weekend and my mind went crazy with ideas for a new rider blog series. I have so many questions and I want to start this series by asking Georgena for some advice.
One of the things that makes me most nervous about cycling is being clipped in to my pedals. I know I don’t have to put them on just yet until I get comfortable, but how would you suggest easing into clip-in pedals?
I’d start by putting one on the bike at a time. That will give you time to get used to the feel and concept. Add the second one when you’re ready. It’s also important to know that the tension can be adjusted on the pedal, meaning that you can make it easier or harder to click in and out. You might want to start with an easy setting at first.
Terry offers so many saddles. How do I know which one I should start with as a new rider?
For the kind of riding you’re doing, I’d start with the Butterfly CroMoly Gel. The shape of this saddle seems to have a universal appeal to a lot of women. The gel in the saddle is just enough to dissipate pressure and absorb shock without being bulky and heavy.
As a new rider I feel a little uneducated about chamois and there seem to be a lot of options. I have only tried the Bella Knickers and I can definitely say that I have never felt more comfortable on a bike in my life. Are there different types of chamois for different kinds of riders?
There definitely are a variety of chamois shapes and densities that are offered for different rider styles and affect the price of the shorts quite dramatically. Endurance/distance riders like higher density, perforated chamois with air flow. Recreational riders can get away with something a bit less technical, but still comfortable. Chamois fit and seam placement are most critical. You want to be sure it’s wide enough in the rear so you don’t get seams underneath your sit bones. The Italians have cornered the market on 4-way stretch, which ultimately moves with you and disappears beneath you.
Changing a tire. I suppose I need to learn how to do this. What is your best tire-changing tip for new riders?
Read my Cycling Savvy eLetter on about this.
Don’t go out on the bike until you’ve learned to change a tire. Always carry the right tools for the job and a spare inner tube so you don’t have to take time to patch a tube on the spot.
Thank you Georgena!
These are all great answers and I am excited to get out there and start riding (after I learn to change a tire of course). I hope that the “new rider” series will inspire other new riders and help to answer some of the questions you may have. If you are a new rider and have questions or topics you would like me to cover I welcome suggestions!