Purchasing Your Bike
Purchasing the right bike is your first step. I chose the Surly Long Haul Trucker
knowing that my ultimate goal is to bike across the country and this was an excellent purchase.
Steady. Solid. Beautiful.
I purchased my bike from Pedal Power
in Middletown, CT. Great customer service and since it was right when COVID-19 shut everything down…they were super accommodating and professional. Not to mention really fun to speak with.
Tip: Sizing and bike fit are critical components to purchasing your bike. If possible, go to the store and speak with someone who can help you make the best decision for your body. If you are unable to shop in person, speak to someone that knows the right questions to ask to
Anatomy of Your Bike
It is essential for you to know everything about your bike. Once I purchased Freedom, of course she needed a name, I really wanted to empower myself and learn everything about her.
Tip: It’s best to know anatomy of your bike. There are lots of diagrams out there and it can be intimidating. This one is pretty straight forward.
Basic Bike Repair
You want to know how your bike works, how to fix it, and how to keep it high functioning and operating efficiently. REI has tons of great videos on everything cycling…I highly recommend them.
Although it is not necessary, I purchased a bike repair stand knowing that bike repair was something that I was going to dive into beyond the basics. REI Good & Used
is an excellent place to buy used gear that is in great condition but much less expensive and also better for the environment (less stuff in landfills).
Tip: Do your research. There are lots of repair stands out there. This one requires that you take the front wheel off to attach it. Others have a clamp that attaches to the seat post or top tube. This one requires a bit more strength to lift the bike and it was a bit awkward until I got used to it.
I have spent a bunch of time just fiddling with my bike on the stand. Removing and replacing the wheels, watching the chain move through the gears, and cleaning the chain after each ride. Paying close attention to the sounds, watching and noticing the mechanics, and feeling the flow of your bike will ensure that you can ride safely and that you will get to your destination.
Next blog…dreaming big and choosing your first journey.