Saturday, August 8, 2009

Bridge Pedal and Pedal Issues

I will be taking part in the Bridge Pedal ride tomorrow (actually less than 12 hours from now) here in Portland. It's an annual event where you can ride over the bridges (even ones that are normally inaccessible by bike) that run across the Willamette River that runs through the center of Portland. There are 4 different rides with distances varying from 5 to 38 miles. I am taking part in the 38 mile 11 Bridge Ride. This ride will take me over some bridges and even on freeways and parts of Portland I'd been wanting to ride, but haven't because they seemed hard to get to. It'll also be my first mass ride (not counting the Sunday Parkways) ever since I rode my last road race in college. It's not a race or timed event though, so I don't think I will ride "full throttle". Rather I will enjoy riding my bike where normally it's not allowed and enjoy what is supposedly some of the best views in Portland.

My leg (left leg in particular) has been feeling quite sore on every ride lately though. I'd been wondering how to alleviate the pain. I think the problem is the bio-mechanics, meaning how my body is positioned must not be quite right. I considered riding in platform pedals with regular shoes tomorrow.

(platform pedal on KT)

These pedals (Crank Brothers Candy C) that are on Special K are great. They are so easy to get in and out of.

(Candy C pedal on Special K)

But, the cleat on the shoe can only be adjusted so far and when I click my left shoe into the pedal, I feel like my foot should be further forward than it can go. The adjustability might be more of an issue with the shoe, but it's lead me to consider having a different set up.

Riding with platform pedals will solve the problem as I will be able to move my foot freely on the pedal, but just as a last ditch effort, I decided to try changing the saddle position. If I can't move my foot, then I can move my body in relation to my foot instead, so I raised and moved back the saddle a little bit. I had an errand to the store, so I rode there with the new position and it seemed to have worked out. I guess the thing about clipless pedals is that they lock your feet into place, so it makes position of other things (mainly the saddle) more crucial. I was only riding very casually and I didn't ride with much effort, so I don't know for sure though. Normally, if you are a serious rider, you wouldn't change your riding position a day before an event as that really changes your bio-mechanics, but then I'm not that serious of a rider. I'm not going to race this event with the other participants or anything.

Anyway, I hope I'll be able to ride without pain tomorrow. I will definitely report afterwards hopefully with some photos of the ride.

On a different subject, I wrote about cycling shoes last time, but I found these shoes that seem pretty nice. They are made by the messenger bag company Chrome and I assume, they are not compatible with clipless pedals, but they seem like the perfect shoes for platform pedals.

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