Remember how I’m really bad at biking, and I feel like I’m working twice as hard as anyone else who ever clambered onto a bike,and I feel like I have the physical conditioning of a throw pillow?
Remember that time Barack Obama said that properly inflated tires will save you fuel?
Well, it’s true, and I learned that in a very humbling way, for a “grown-up” and a Mechanical Engineer.
Wednesday after work, Biking Person/Ecocheap taught me to take care of and change my tires. I learned how to disassemble my bike, and got to play with all sorts of fun new tools. We inflated the new* tires to 80psi once they were back on. The ride home was fantastic! Pedaling was almost effortless after all that plodding around on nearly-flat tires. Talk about energy saved- it was way more than 3%. So, political point made, as I zoom along, feeling much more like a clock radio than a throw pillow. Not quite a light switch, though. Are these metaphors making any sense yet?
I never really rode bikes as a kid (grew up on a fairly dangerous country logging road), so I had no idea what a flat tire felt like- or that my tires were under inflated. Did you know bikes have a tire on the outside and a tube on the inside, and it’s the tube you inflate? How did I get this old without knowing that? More importantly, why didn’t they teach us that instead of Fluid Dynamics in school?
Now, I have no excuse for such quad-busting ignorance. I’ll have to find a gage and pump this weekend, and keep my tires (all six of them!) at the proper levels.
*They were new to me. BP/EC found them in the “please reuse” piles behind Big Wheel Bikes on Prince St. I’ll check it out this weekend for my pump. And maybe a bell, though I bet they don’t discard much of that stuff for the first taker.