Recumbent Bike Riding
One of my faithful readers and often "commenter" asked about the difference in riding a recumbent and a regular bike. Just for the record the Bent riders call them "up-wrong" bikes not upright bikes because they have evolved into something that man is just not made to do. First of all, most backs need to be supported and the neck will eventually stiffen up if you look down all the time. If you needed to stand up and pedal, you could walk or jog and not bike. On a recumbent or bent, you have a real seat, your back is supported and you are looking straight ahead. OK, it does mean that you could get bugs in your teeth or goose poop on your face but hey, you can't have everything. You can put fenders on the bent and there are even wind screens for cold weather. But what fun is that?
Besides having a bike with a seat that doesn't turn your underwear into a thong, you use a different set of muscles on a bent. You are much more prone to set a steady pace of pedaling with the gears being used to make the difference as you ride. If it is too easy, you increase the gear size If it is too hard, you reduce the gear size. After a while you don't even think about pedaling harder, you just change the gears. I maintain a steady pace of pedaling and even with the hills and dales on our bike path I manage to stay on the middle of three on the front ring. When they finish the east side of the lake trail I'm sure that there is one or two places I will have to use the smallest ring in front. I have three front rings and 7 gears. That is 21 choices to find the perfect gear combination.
I don't know how many times lately that I have had to holler at a regular bike rider that I was straight ahead of him. They spend their time hunched over a handlebar leaning way forward and looking down. In fact, last year there was a collision on the the Lake Shawnee bike path where a very large man killed a woman bike rider because they were both looking down and just flat hit "head on". I can't imagine not looking where you are going.
No matter what you ride, there is one hazard you will face on any bike path. Other people! People think that they can walk four abreast without any consideration of other walkers or riders. There is also the new dog leashes where dogs can be reeled out 25 feet or so as you walk. Dogs are pack animals and are meant to be by the leader. To let them out on a 25 foot cord and allow them to run across the trail in front of bikes is stupid. I always say "Bike on your Left" as I get ready to pass people. I also will say "reel him in" to dog owners with the little dogs on the cords. There is just nothing you can say to the geese but make a hissing sound with your mouth closed. This time of year when there are gosling's out and about the mothers will even charge you as you go by.
Yesterday was the day everyone dreams about. The mid 80's, sunny, slight breeze of dry air from the north and no rain in sight. Today will be a repeat of that and I will try to get out and watch some of the Tinman Triathlon over at the lake.