One speed and flat roads

I used to be a pretty decent cyclist. Sure, a lot of people could drop me, but I could hold my own against a lot of folks as well. I think when I was living in Luxembourg I raced against the Schleck brothers (Fränk and Andy) as well. I probably beat them too. Well, maybe I was only beating Andy. At the time we would have been racing against each other in Luxembourg, Fränk was 16 and Andy was 11.

Now, my beautiful titanium bicycle is sitting in my garage in Los Angeles, gathering dust. As you know I have my similarly colored ママチャリ here in Nagoya. On Sunday I was feeling sloth-like, and needed to get some exercise. I had planned on a bike ride, but the day was passing without any action. I was making excuses, like, “Well, if I go out it will probably rain.” Lame.

As I was falling asleep on the couch I finally shook myself out of my lethargy and started mapping a course. I knew that if I could just get to a river, likely I’d have a bike path to follow. One thing that drives me crazy is the constant stopping and starting. Why even bother with a road bike when you would be clipping and unclipping most the time? A riverside ride would at least give the illusion of an open road.

I was checking out the Nagoya map and found a river out by the Nagoya Dome. Hey, that had potential. Around 5 pm, on a hot and humid day, I headed out on my bike looking for some exercise.

Yada yada yada

Indeed I found a bike path, one that was actually pretty nice. I told myself I’d go out until 6:00 pm and turn around so that I’d get two hours in. Of course, just getting to where I could ride consistently without stopping took some time, but once I got along the Yada river I found a very serviceable path and had a nice, long ride. On one speed. It is kind of hard to feel like a cyclist sitting upright with a basket in the front, but I kept plugging along. I wonder how fast I was going?

My ride for the day

 

The Yada River meets the Shonai River and the trip starts feeling like you are actually out in the country.

Peaceful countryside

 

So the experience has made me think, “Do I want a real road bike out here?” Should I drop the cash and get a low end road bike? Even low end is still serious cash. Will I actually ride consistently? I’m not sure, but I do know that I’ll get out there again on the but this time I’ll put some water in the basket!