Saturday, April 07, 2007

The Boulder experience, day 2.

Up and at 'em at 28 degrees. Yikes. We had a 10 am appointment at Colorado Multisport.

But, so, imagine the following: you have three hours to spend with someone who knows a whole bunch about bikes and triathlons, and you can ask them all the questions you've been meaning to ask him, sorting through all the stuff you've read, and the hype. They work with you, and only you, and answer all your questions and adjust your bike so that you stop hating your bike and are well on your way to making friends with you saddle.

That's what I got today from Tim at Colorado Multisport.

Of the many things I learned today, I learned that my old bike was the right size, but badly fitted.

Second, as I suspected, I am, indeed, the average male triathlete. I am 5'6" and have a longer torso and wider shoulders than most; so for a female, I'm quite manly. I don't worry because I know that the universe loves a balance, and that somewhere there is a girly triathlete man.

Anyhoo, Tim had me fill out a questionnaire and then sat down and interviewed me about my habits and experience on the bike. I was honest. I shared with him that, for the most part, my experience was that biking sucked, saddles sucked even more, and cycling events were punishment for having been very, very bad in a previous life. Tim asked me which event was my "strongest,"

I said, "the question really is, 'at which one do I suck at the least?'"

Tim laughed.

Then I said, "Ironically, it's the bike."

I have to tell you, I was nervous as first, because Tim seemed so young. However, he really knows his stuff, and as I'm discovering, everyone seems younger these days because, apprently, I'm getting older.

The next thing Tim did was take some measurements of me standing, lying, and the bent over. He had me sit me up on a compu trainer and set the tension up and then say, "Pedal. Keep your cadence up the upper 90's" He corrected my posture, and gave me exercises to help make it even better, which he's going to email me.

At first I was like, WTF???? PEDAL? You mean I have to WORK today?

And work I did, throughtout all the various measurements and questions and adjustment, I pedaled in bursts until I was breathing heavy and sweating and my quads were burning. He pointed to the readout and commented on my form and measured away. Then he started making adjustments.

The first adjustment Tim made was to change out my saddle. He put one on called a San Marco Glamour (see picture, right)

Oh. My. God.

I felt the difference right away.
Then, he pulled out my aerobars and tipped them up a bit, because I was hunched up and this would stretch me out a bit, but also angle me so that I wasn't always hunching to look up.

Then he put insoles in my cycling shoes and something called "wedges," to correct the angle of my legs when I pedaled.

Eventually, after all the measuring and such, he took Wunderfrost, who will hereafter be my trusty training bike, and set her up according to his specs.

All this took nearly 3 hours. It was time well spent, let me tell you. I could feel the difference immediately.

I promise you this: even if I wasn't purchasing a bike all the stuff I learned and the adjustments made to my existing bike were so well worth it: worth driving through the ice from Albuquerque to Boulder, worth the 29 degree day that I endured with no proper coat, worth it because I feel pretty strongly from now on that my experience on the bike is about to change.

Finally, Tim plugged in all his numbers into a computer which suggested...the Kestral Aifoil Pro, although technically, it seemed that I had several options available to me, being the average manly triathlete woman that I am. The airfoil pro. Huh. Whaddaya know about that? My new one will have 650 wheels, instead of 700's, with HED 3 and the Ultegra set.

After I was done, it was Sweet Baboo's turn, and I'll let him tell you about his experience.

As Sweet Baboo was finishing up his turn, with the crazy grin on his face that told me that, for him, it had been time well spent, that's when Duane arrived. The three of us when to BD's Mongolian Grill on Pearl Street, and talked. Duane is every bit as nice, funny, and friendly as you might suspect him to be, and has fantastic taste in music as well (Pink Floyd ROCKS, and now I don't have to saw at my wrists from Devo overload!) We learned aobut his two daughters, and about how one of them is about to do her first triathlon. We swapped triathlon stories. It was a great time! I ate much food, now that I have the excuse that I can eat like a manly man. Duane took a picture of us, and I completely forgot to get out the camera and take one of him and Baboo.

So sometime soon I'll have a new toy and now I really have to stop the martini drinking and train, because I have absolutely no more excuses. It's all up to me now; no more blaming my crappy splits on bad saddles and machinery that's out to get me.

As for the new bike, Webster's tells me that a Kestral is, "a small falcon that hovers in the air against a wind." I like that. I haven't named her yet, but I will. I'm still considering a custom paint job which I've decided, if I can get it, will involve purple and gold. In the meantime, here's a picture of her with factory specs:

So that was my experience. I don't know how typical it is, but if you have the time and the means to get this type of personalized fit experience, run, don't walk, to getcha one.!

Colorado Multisport is awesome, and I had a great time. And because we paid for the bikes outright, they are shipping it home for free, and it is being shipped out of state, we do NOT have to pay the 8% sales tax.

Sweet Baboo had a great time, too, but I'll let him tell you about that!




  1. That rocks - looking foward to the pictures of your new she-beast! Congrats!

  2. Sounds like forgiveness in order on behalf of Bold and Duane dropping the ball on the whole weather thing!! lol
    I probably should take my bike in and get it more properly fitted. Especially since I'm having my new auto custom fitted for it's bike rack.
    Purple and gold for your colors ah? I LOVE purple. If I could've gotten purple on my bike I would have. But red is faster so I in all reality, purple wasn't available)
    Custom paint job. If I find I am actually getting my butt on the saddle as much as I hope to, a custom paint might be in order.
    Congratulations on your new rides!!

  3. see? You knew all along!

    That is going to be one super gorgeous pony.

    could we call it "she hawk"?

  4. tim's da best!

    glad your trip to our winter wonderland ended well for you...

    and the Sweet Baboo...

    well, i'll have to go over and read him to find out!

    (it was 70F today -- i.hate.everybody.)

  5. I just read this post - wow am I jealous. Any time I ride for more than 30 minutes, my feet fall asleep, my shoulders and neck ache horribly, my hands and wrists hurt... I'm sure my bike doesn't fit right but don't quite know where to go around here to deal with it! (Can't fly to CO just for this, although... my sister in law in Aspen is adopting a baby soon and we do want to go see them! A perfect excuse! But really there must be some place closer to Connecticut that can do this for me!


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