This morning was all about getting out and doing something active. I bailed on joining the trail running group because the only folks who rsvp'd where way out of my league and - as awesome as they are in their acceptance of newbies - the pressure I feel to not drag them down too much is, well, too much for me. I know I've said that before and it's still true. So this morning I decided to take the bike out for a ride around the neighborhood. I want to join a group ride in Wayne on Monday and I decided I better make sure I'm not going to embarrass myself (or Maggie who rides with them and is not shy about acknowledging her friends).
Right away I could tell the bike wasn't right. It was not shifting well at all. It either wouldn't shift or it would all of a sudden shift two at a time. And the chain was rubbing against the derailleur even in middle gears where I spend a lot of time. I have to admit I panicked. I vaguely remembered Mike telling us about this in bike class but I couldn't remember exactly what he said (or what I had read). I was certain that I had put something back together incorrectly and had now broken something else because of it. And after the $$$ that had to go into the car this week I was ready to cry. At this point I also wasn't sure it wasn't just me not being able to ride or shift properly.
I headed toward Cyclesport which had just opened for the day. I was embarrassed to admit that this was my first ride since the class had ended. Barry, the mechanic who looked after my bike, said he hadn't been out much yet either. I think he as lying but it was nice of him to try to make a customer feel better. Anyway, he showed me how much slack there was in the cable on the lowest cog and suddenly it all started to come back to me. I actually recognized what he was telling me about how the cable can stretch and that can cause the gear shifting to slip. :) He said it wasn't that unusual just after replacing it since it had been all coiled up before putting it on. He took his time adjusting both rear and front shifting cables and the front derailleur. After that I went out for my ride and the bike shifted beautifully.
So the bike is fine. As for me, I definitely need to get out more. My mini panic attack is - I'm sure - due to being slightly depressed from not getting enough activity. In the end, I had a nice ride today but my fitness level is more or less ground zero right now. It's hard to believe I completed Goofy in 2010. I am still leery about joining the group ride Monday. But I know the area of the ride on so I can always beg off and find my way back on my own. I have to start somewhere.
Keep smiling and keep moving.