Last week was a crap week for cycling. Possibly the worst May week since I’ve been riding a bicycle regularly. Three days of rain. And it snowed yesterday. Three times (not much and there was no accumulation, but c’mon dude, snow in May?!).
When I woke up there was snow on the vehicle’s windshields but we just brought the Co-Motion home Saturday… no chance I wasn’t taking it out unless it was raining.
We went big, because we all know I don’t go small. Possibly a little too big for a first group ride on a tandem – and only our second ride on a double. 44 miles at just under 18 mph for an average.
The first 30-ish were awesome. We both felt good and rode well. The last ten or so, I turned into Betty White in the Snickers commercial. I ate enough but I definitely didn’t drink enough and I was smoked. I have never worked so hard on a bicycle.
There were definitely some issues we had to work through but they were hills to mountain climbers. Getting into them now would be counter-productive so I’ll save that for a future post after we’ve had time to iron them out – and I’ve got just as much to work on as my wife…
The tandem is really about working together. When we did, there’s nothing like it in cycling. It’s smooth and fast and fun. When we didn’t, and there were times, it blew me up just trying to hold the wheel in front of us…
That said, when we worked together, the tandem was awesome and I’m glad we decided to try it. We just have a little work to do to get to a point where we’re working together most of the time.
To wrap up our first foray into tandem riding, there were a lot of pluses and a few minuses to work through. The coolest on the plus list is riding into the wind. While you feel it, it’s not the same as on a single bike – it’s a lot easier to push through the wind (and we had plenty to test this on yesterday). Riding double brings to mind an old cliché – learning to ride a tandem is a lot like making sausage. The process is a bit ugly but the end result is beautiful. I’m keeping my eye on the prize: A plate full of Jimmy Dean’s sausage next to my waffles with peanut butter and syrup. After a long ride on the tandem with my wife.