I went for a longish (for a fat-bike) ride on the Ox yesterday, both on the lake and off. By the time I was done, everything hurt and today I’m walking about more gingerly than I would like.
How–since there’s really no reason to ask why at this point–did I do this to myself, you ask? A finely tuned combination of factors was required:
- I mounted a new saddle–an Ergon SM3-L, to be specific–and it look me half the ride to get it halfway near the right position. By that time, I was tender enough in the wrong spots that I could no longer tell whether I was getting it right or not–or whether I ever would.
- I switched to a different pair of boots–flat soled Wolvhammers instead of my ancient LaCrosse hunters. This, combined with the shifting and never-quite-right saddle position, meant that my feet were moving around too much on the VP-001 pedals that I use on the Ox. It was also clear that the Wolvhammers, because they aren’t really flat like the other boots I normally wear, do not really hook up to the pedals in the same way. I had plenty of time to consider, on the way back across the lake when I was really tired, whether they are an expensive mistake.
- I lowered the tire pressures for the ride across the lake to 7psi in front and 8psi in the rear–and then just left it there once I was off the lake and on to the Capitol City Trail, which for once was decently plowed. I left it this way at first because the CCT is not often that well-plowed (and it had snowed on Saturday) and then just left it because I figured I could use the workout. And a workout–or a working over–is exactly what got. This did, however, make it so that I didn’t have to adjust the pressure when I rode the unplowed sections of the Cannonball and the much-less-plowed sections of the Badger State Trail.
- I didn’t really take enough fluids with me. Normally, on a ride of this distance and duration, I’ll carry a thermos of herbal tea and stop mid-ride at one of the local coffee-shops for a mid-ride break. Took the tea, didn’t take the mid-ride break. I didn’t run out, but I could have used another liter of water.
It turns out that if you add 1+2+3+4, you get the wreckage. And the return trip across the lake gave me an unplanned chance to visit the dark places of my mind that I’ll no doubt end up frequenting during Trans Iowa.
But it was a beautiful day to be out on the bike.