I guess that beginning anything new, you really don’t know what you don’t know. It’s funny how much riding I’ve done in the past and have never focused on the actual technique of, well, riding. I should know how important technique is due to my expertise in guitar. But alas, I’m not perfect.
Today I am extremely grateful to Andy, who not only let me borrow a bike (an awesome bike I might add), but let me use his indoor trainer. I did not realize that I was going to need it like I did this morning. The plan calls to work on the “dead” spot of each of your pedaling strokes. I did not even realize I there was a “dead” spot at the top of your stroke.
With the bike in the trainer, I warmed up for 5 minutes. Then, the idea was to put one leg on a chair and pedal with the other. At the top of each turn there is an obvious “dead” spot where the pedal was disengaging with the rotation. I really had to focus on actually lifting my leg slightly, pushing forward with my foot, and using my muscles to smooth out the dead spot. This was much more difficult than I thought. Ironically, smoothing out my left leg was much easier than my dominant right leg.
I was to keep alternating trying to pedal with one leg for two minutes and then switching for two minutes on the other. All the while trying to get rid of the dead spot. I could only manage to finish one minute each time and pedaled with both legs to finish out each of the two minute segments. This I continued for a total of 30 minutes. I finished with a 5 minute cool down.
This was an entirely new way of thinking through the cadence of the pedaling movement. I am not sure how all of it will translate on the road. It takes a lot mental effort to develop these habits without returning to previous movements.
One thing is for sure, this second day on the bike was much worse for comfort. I was really feeling the bike seat by the end of the session. I think this also had to do with removing a foot from a pedal every two minutes. I know nothing is ever easy at first and this definitely proved this point.
Week 2, Day 2, Done. Tomorrow is another run focusing on my stride. I am going to need to find a park to run in because I definitely do not want to do this on the road again.