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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    64

    Nursing Injuries

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    Well, I'm totally new to cycling and thought I'd look for a little commiseration over my questionable start to my cycling career. For my 30th birthday I invested in a decent bike and was very excited to take up the sport. I have a grand total of three rides under my belt and have managed to fall.....EVERY time I've ridden! The first two incidents were the result of not getting my foot out of the clip in time. I think I now have that down. But the road rash on my leg and the gash in my hand that I am currently nursing are the result of yesterday's ride with my husband and daughter. We had an amazing ride and it was my first time riding on the road and not just on a protected cycling path. My husband was pulling our daughter in a trailer attached to his bike. As he passed me, I allowed myself to get distracted by looking at what my daughter was doing in the trailer. I realized I was going to go off the road a second before it happened, and MAY have saved myself the fall if I hadn't totally lost my mental nerve at that moment and my body just seemed to follow. My ironman husband has been nothing but supportive. As I fumed over being 3 for 3, he pointed out that 3 for 3 is much better than being 1 for 1, because it means that I keep getting back on my bike and not giving up. So I decided that 3 for 3 would become a point of pride for me...in that, one day (after first investing in a good pair of gloves), I hope to be an experienced cyclist looking back on my start and encouraging a new cyclist with antecdotes from my first three rides. In the mean time, encouraging words from any of you who are already at that point in your riding would be appreciated....And lets just hope I don't have to change my name to 4for4!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Limbo
    Posts
    8,783
    2008 Trek FX 7.2/Terry Cite X
    2009 Jamis Aurora/Brooks B-68
    2010 Trek FX 7.6 WSD/stock bontrager

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    south georgia
    Posts
    953

    You are not alone!

    I have an older brother who decided he wanted a bike. We took him to a LBS and got him rigged up with a carbon Giant. He lives in Tampa but goes to our mom's every week in Ocala. First time on the bike he decides to take a tour down a very busy highway near Ocala airport. Well, I used to teach horseback riding and always told the kids to "look where you want to go". This applies here because after a light rain, bro rode on the painted strip on the road, very slick. He started to loose his back wheel and looked to the gutter for support. Yes, his maiden voyage resulted in a downhill 25 mph skid into the gutter. Fortunately only a little road rash and the bike is okay. The next day he put a little sticker on the bike, G2. Stands for "gutter girl". Just remember we are laughing with you and not at you. One day it will all seem funny. Happy riding.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Riding my Luna & Rivendell in the Hudson Valley, NY
    Posts
    8,409
    I read the title of this thread and winced, remembering my babies testing out their new little baby teeth on me. Happily, they never did it more than once, because of the reaction it produced.
    Lisa
    Our bikes...OurBikes...and my mountain dulcimer blog
    Ruby's Website and My blog
    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Bavaria, Germany
    Posts
    28

    Talking

    Encouraging words? You got it!

    I only aspire to having stories like yours, in which actual things (unfamiliar clips, your daughter, etc) have been the cause of your accidents.

    Every time I have had a crash, it has only been because my ridiculous impatience or my desire to be "fancy" met up with an ill-placed curb. I kid you not.

    It's happened 3 times now: Once I was angry at the dude in the slow-moving golf cart on the bike path in front of me. So I thought I would "show him" and go off-road in order to pass. My front wheel caught the turf wrong and I went straight down, almost into a tree. Boy, I guess I showed him.

    Then, I was riding on a busy street and had been trailing a bus, sucking in all that awful exhaust, for a couple miles. I finally decided enough was enough, attempted to jump a curb so I could zoom by the bus on the sidewalk, and instead got stuck half way up the curb and skidded to halt on my right knee. Ah, the joys of road burn from a super lame move like that!

    Finally, I was riding to the grocery store in a very un-bike-friendly little town. There was a line of cars waiting to pull into the parking lot, along with a car coming the opposite direction, and a car waiting to pull out of the lot. A traffic jam, to be sure. Rather than be patient (what's that??) and wait until the cars went through, I had the brilliant idea to just hop the curb and pass the whole lot. The curb turned out to be twice as high as I estimated, and I flipped over my handlebars. I wrist-planted, gathered grit and pebbles into both palms, and jammed my right ribs into the handlebars.

    That was the last straw: I now stay put behind slow-moving transportation, pass busses on the road and only when it is safe, and never, ever try to hop any curb at any time, in hopes that I can end my string of ridiculous crashes. Maybe third time's the charm for you, too?

    One more little bit of inspiration: Remember how many times your daughter fell down when she was learning how to walk? Let that be a lesson in how persistence pays off.

    Have a great time out there!
    There's only one thing better than spending a day on my bike: Spending a day on my bike in good company.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    foothills of the Ozarks aka Tornado Alley
    Posts
    4,197

    You hang in there!

    You are not alone. I remember when I first used SPDs, I took a spill 2-3 times before getting the hang of it. I did a stupid slo-mo fall in front of my house. Another time I was slowing to a stop and my weight shifted to the foot that wasn't unclipped. I have perfected the fine art of falling, albeit on my mountain bike. When it comes to cycling, it boils down to this: core strength and balance. Give yourself some slack because you are just beginning your first cycling season. Cycle in a big empty parking lot and practice figure eights. Then practice unclipping before coming to a stop. Then ride on roads with little to no traffic and get used to shifting your hands on the hoods and down in the drops. Then try reaching for your water bottle and putting it back. Soon your body will become acclimated to it and it will begin to build muscle memory. It takes about 3 months or so to truly get your cycling legs and by then you should feel more confident on the bike.

    Just remember, we all had to start somewhere.
    Last edited by sundial; 09-08-2008 at 09:09 AM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Mississauga -a "burb" outside Toronto
    Posts
    648
    Scurve:

    It seems curbs are your nemesis...


    "You can't get what you want till you know what you want." Joe Jackson

    2006 Cannondale Feminine/Ultegra/Jett

    2012 Trek Speed Concept 9.5/Ultegra/saddle TBD

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Niagara County, NY (Rainbow Country!)
    Posts
    98

    Best laughs I've had in a very long time!

    Quote Originally Posted by Zen View Post
    Thanks a million for this link! These stories are so, so funny...I've had tears running down my face for nearly an hour now.

    It's nice to know that I'm not the only clutz on the planet...
    Jane

    Every human being must be viewed according to what it is good for; for none
    of us, no not one, is perfect; and were we to love none who had
    imperfections, this world would be a desert for our love.

    --- Thomas Jefferson

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    64

    Thank you!!

    Thank you so much for your advice, stories and links! My husband assured me that everyone falls, but I feel so much better hearing about actual incidents and knowing that I truly am not the only one! Ride number four will either be Thursday or Saturday depending on how the hand heals (It's pretty ugly). My goal is to break my streak!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    1,061
    It happens to all of us! No worries! Get a good set of gloves--as much for protecting your hands as for padding. And if you get discouraged, trying putting the pedals back on and getting comfortable before going clipless again.
    "Well-behaved women seldom make history." --Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

    '09 Trek WSD 2.1 with a Brooks B-68 saddle
    '11 Trek WSD Madone 5.2 with Brooks B-17

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Fort Worth, TX
    Posts
    98
    My first year using clipless pedals I looked like a 12 year old, all skinned knees and elbows. But you know what? Who cares? I was having fun and learning and just kept at it till I learned to unclip and clip seamlessly (sort of). I look at it this way, I've now learned that falling down is NOT the end of the world, so I don't have to be afraid of it

    Barbara

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Good things gro-oh-ow in Ontario!
    Posts
    382
    I'm not to the point of being an experienced cyclist but I have had my share of falls and I'm sure there will be more. I like your husband's point that 3 for 3 means you got back on 3 times after falling.

    The first time I ever got on a road bike I fell while stopping at an intersection. I looked up to see the girl in the car next to me laughing her head off. I walked the bike back to the store with my tail between my legs.

    I almost crashed my bike while it was on the trainer. The bike looked like it was screwed in but I had forgotten I had moved it earlier and just rested it back on the trainer.

    I fell over at a complete standstill in my driveway after I "forgot" how to unclip. "Ohhhh turn heel, not pull up like a maniac" I had a lovely gash in my knee and now a bit of a scar, but I dig it.

    I, too, hope to be experienced and look back and laugh at my ride on the learning curve one day.

    And I'm still reading that Bike Forums thread but I'm loving it! Hilarious.
    "Live, more than your neighbors. Unleash yourself upon the world and go places. Go now! Giggle. Know. Laugh. And bark the the moon like the wild dog that you are!" - Jon Blais

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    37

    Thumbs up Me Too

    As you can see from my pic, I'm a faller. Every time. But, you know what? Each time I fall, I realize that 1. I didn't die 2. I didn't go to the hospital (like the first time) and 3. I always learn a lesson. Each time I'm just proud of myself for getting back on the bike.
    I switched out of SPD's and now have regular pedals and am just concentrating on being one with my bike. Once that happens, THEN I might put my SPD's back on. I'm not in a rush. I'm riding for me, competing (or not) against me, and judging myself against me. So, no worries.
    You're out there, that's the only thing that matters!
    Keep riding!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    64

    update

    Okay....I've put off writing this all day, but I feel I owe it to all the people who sent me encouragement to send an update. I went for ride #4 today. I left with high spirits and felt built up by all the stories I read, and I KNEW that today was going to be the day that I was going to break my streak! Alas...about halfway through my ride, I cut across a large, empty, church parking lot, in order to avoid a busy stretch of road. While I was riding through the lot, I thought to myself "Hm...people recommended practicing things like taking my water bottle in and out. Now would be the perfect opportunity to do so." So I took it out, took a swig, and attempted to place it back into it's holder without looking. After all...I was in a parking lot...I was safe, right? Well...I proceeded to DROP the water bottle onto the ground where it started rolling backwards. It turns out that maybe the first thing I should have practiced was not the water bottle, but those figure eights...because while turning around to get the bottle, I turned too sharp, slowed down too much and (of course) didn't unclip in time to get a leg down to stop the fall. (By the way, I totally did this in front of the church's gardener) But WAIT...there's more! As I started to leave the church parking lot, a large SUV came barrelling down the road and I realized I would have to come to a complete stop to let it by. So, I unclipped and leaned over to put a leg down....ON THE WRONG SIDE. That's right! I fell over TWICE in about three minutes (again..in front of the gardener!)! If it wasn't so gosh darn ridiculous that it's funny, I would probably be feeling much more humiliated right now. But despite it all, I had a blast today on my first solo ride and can't wait to go out again this weekend with my husband. Thanks for all your stories and encouragement! I'll get there one day....

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    64

    I just realized...

    I've now fallen more times than I have actually ridden....

 

 

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