A few weeks ago I wrote that I was going to take the beach cruiser out for a few bike rides, and that didn’t happen. Sure, I was doing other activities, like Bikram yoga, swimming and Zumba, but that’s not the reason I didn’t go for a bike ride. Here’s where I can get a bit honest – I’ve been avoiding taking the beach cruiser out because it’s gotten increasingly difficult for me to get on and off the bike because of my weight.
Since it’s been some time since my last bike ride (I seriously can’t remember when I last rode it, maybe 4 months? Maybe 6?), my tires need to get inflated quite a bit. I haven’t wanted to ride it the half mile to the gas station to fill the tires with air because I’m really afraid of falling off the bike as I’m trying to get off of it, and I just don’t want to look stupid in such a public place. To be clear, I’m not worried at all about hurting myself, because I know I could take that part, but the bruise to my ego/self-esteem is probably too much. Ridiculous, I know. But it’s true.
So I asked my parents to get me an electric air pump for my birthday so that I could just pump the tires up at home. That way I can pump up the tires whenever and then head in any direction I want, not always stopping at the gas station first. I know that if I can easily keep the tires filled with air, I’ll go on bike rides much more often.When I filled the tires with air today, they were down to 20psi, instead of the 45-65psi they should be. It was really easy to use and took less than 10 minutes. Easy!
As for the main problem – getting on and off the bike, I know that as I lose weight it will become easier for me to position my leg through the space in the front of the bike. I usually try to lift my leg up and through the space between the seat and the handlebars of the bike in front, no easy task for someone with short, fat legs that aren’t easily maneuverable. And because of that, I’ve been avoiding riding my bike, even when my sister asks me to go on one with her, and it kills me because I love to ride bikes around our neighborhood together.
Then my sister suggested that instead of putting my legs through the space in the front, I should swing my leg over the back of the bike. I’d never thought of it before! I’ve always gotten on the bike going through the space in the front, and I guess old habits die hard. I tried it, and it was SO much easier for me!! Not only is it a smoother position, but I can also use the handlebars for support. I am thrilled that getting on and off the bike is so much easier and more stable for me now. It goes to show that sometimes you just need to look at a situation from a completely different perspective in order to solve the problem. It also helps that I’m completely comfortable with my sister, so explaining an embarrassing situation isn’t a big deal. If I wouldn’t have shared this with her, I’d never have fixed the problem, and would have missed out on a lot more bike rides.
It’s a warm day, and nothing feels better than going out on the bike with the sun shining and the wind giving a nice breeze to keep you cool. We went out for an hour and had the BEST time; burning 823 calories wasn’t bad, either. Now that I’m much more mobile, I plan on taking the bike out for rides all the time. Besides my neighborhood, which has wide streets filled with great houses and beautiful landscaping, there are a couple of walk/run/bike paths nearby that are great for longer rides. But a new goal before the end of the summer is to go to Half Moon Bay with my sister and ride bikes again near the beach.
I’ve also decided that once I reach 100 lbs lost, I’m going to buy myself the red beach cruiser that I’ve always wanted. The Nirve peach-colored bike I have is fine, but I’ve always regretted not getting the red bike. I feel like my clothes and style go so much better with red than with a pastel bike. I’m more of a classic, primary color girl anyway. I like cleaner, simplistic, more retro looking lines in everything, including my bikes. And I can’t think of a better reward for losing 100 lbs.
Now if you’re dying to know how the bike got named Lola, you can read this post.