Thursday, 23 February 2012

The trouble with bikes

As I've been concentrating on my upcoming half marathon recently, I've been using most of my spare time to run. My cross-training has fallen by the wayside a bit, and I haven't cycled as much as I would like.

Up until this week, I had only managed one bike ride in the whole of February. This was during the week after the snow came, and there was still a fair bit of ice and compacted snow on the paths when I tried to cycle on them. This meant a slow ride, and one which was cut short because it was such hard-going.

Then I planned a bike ride last Tuesday. I was looking forward to it as I've been doing so little cycling, and I intended to do about 12 miles. Before I went, the back wheel looked as though it needed some air, so I pumped it up. I went off, and was having quite a good ride, although it was very windy, so I was pretty slow.

After about 4 or 5 miles, I realised that something was wrong. I could feel every bump in the path a little too well, and it was getting harder to keep going. I looked down at the back wheel and it was completely flat. I had a puncture. I changed direction and headed home the quickest way I could, which was about 4 more miles.

It was so hard getting home! I tried to go really carefully so I wouldn't damage the wheel, and it was so uncomfortable. It was extremely slow as well.

I know nothing about bike maitenance, so it's always a worry that a chain could come off, or something else could go wrong. This is where running has a huge advantage - no equipment that can scupper your session - except your tired old body of course!


  1. So the moral of the story is learn how to change a tyre? Or only ride within walking distance of your house? Or ride with someone who knows how to change a tyre? Or just give up riding and stick to running?

  2. My goal for this year is to learn to change a tire.

  3. Flat tires are the worst! It always takes me an hour just to change a tire :( Hopefully yours will go much faster.

  4. Oh no, a flat! That is indeed the problem with bikes, I totally agree. What a bummer!

  5. Last year when I was training for the 100-miler, I kept worrying I'd get a flat and I'd be far from home. I always meant to take a mechanics class but never did. Thankfully I never had a flat, but I still want to take a class somewhere.