Friday, February 25, 2011

If it doesn't fit....

Yesterday I took a half a day off of work to head down to Santa Cruz.  Nope I wasn't heading to the beach.  But that's okay, because the weather wasn't conducive to beach going anyway.

I was heading down to Spokesman Bicycles.  While I love Curtis, my bike fitter/PT, he is a bike fitter and a bicycle coach and a physical therapist, but he doesn't actually sell bikes.  And while I love the guys at the Bicycle Garage, they are really more roadies and don't carry TT bikes. I needed a one stop shop, so to speak. Someone who carries TT bikes and is a great fitter.  So when Curtis told me that it would be worth the drive to head to Spokesman to see Wade, I made an appointment. 

Like Curtis, Wade is pretty easy going.  We had a quick, introductory chat and then my bike went up onto the trainer.  I won't go into the gory details, but he did some testing of flexibility in my knees, hips, legs in general, then had a look at my current fit on my Ruby.  I hadn't started complaining about it yet, but he noticed right away that I wasn't sitting in the right spot on my saddle.  Too much wear in the wrong places (damn you chubby thighs anyway), while the place I should be resting my weight (entirely on the sit bones) showed almost no wear.  After a bunch of try this adjustment, try that, we ended up with a different fit.  All of which was really just to give him an idea of what TT bike might work.  Wade had taken some 'before' video of me on the bike and some video 'after' the readjusted fit.  Then he did a comparative still shot, outlining my back/arms/head, which allowed me to really see the difference. 

The red line is my before and shows me higher on the bike, my back with more of an arch.  The orange line shows the new fit with a nice flat back and not quite so "squished".  I had been feeling like my hips were kind of squished closed when I was in my aero position, but didn't really think too much about it.  Once we changed the fit though, and my hips were allowed to open up, I really noticed the difference. I also noticed that my weight was more balanced, with a more natural shoulder rather than having my shoulders hunched working to support my weight.  The next step was to put a TT bike up on the trainer, get the measurements set to match Ruby, and see how it felt.  Then a quick ride outside (carefully, as it had started raining) and some more adjustments and a lecture. Okay, not really a lecture so to speak.  But he did say that I still seem to sit high on the bike, especially for a TT bike, and that while I am pretty flexible, I have lots of room to improve that flexibility.  By stretching.  And yoga.  Like I haven't heard *that* before.  Hmm...maybe it's time to start paying attention.  Anyway, I can get a good, comfortable, aero fit on a TT bike and still have lots of room to move things around as I get stronger and more flexible.  Awesome.

(Not so) short story....*well* worth the trip.  All in all Wade spent 2-1/2 hours working with me and my bike.  Oh and the bonus....since I bought a bike, no charge for the fit.  Oh, I didn't mention that I bought a bike?!?! 

Yep, I bought one.  Nope, I'm not telling just yet.  They're working on it over the next week, putting bar tape on, a 3rd brake lever, fitting my race wheels properly, cutting my seat post and cables to fit, installing the pedals, etc, etc.  Hopefully it will be ready next weekend.  And then we shall have the grand unveiling. 

I'm stupid excited.  Like a little kid at Christmas excited.  Like wake up early and can't go back to sleep for thinking about the fun stuff ahead excited.  And yes, I realize I am seriously fortunate: 1) to have the money to indulge myself in my little hobby; 2) to have a husband who is of a similar philosopy; and 3) to be able to physically (still working on my mental game) participate in my chosen activities.

Happy, happy, happy Friday!

1 comment:

Molly said...

Squeeeeeee! How exciting! I can't wait to see what you decided on but I'm also soooo glad to see what a difference all that fitting did for you.

I'm still playing the waiting game for my frame *sigh*