I’ve now completed two additional 140km rides as part of training for my end to end ride in June. I’ve learned a lot by taking these long rides, and my fitness level is certainly improving.
Me on arriving in Kirby Le Soken:
However, there have also been problems…
In January I had a professional bicycle fitting done for my Tout Terrain Silkroad bicycle. I found that I was sliding forward on the saddle, and that I had neck and wrist pain. The fitting did help, and I think it also made me faster, but some of the pain remained. When you are on a bicycle for 10 hours, there are pressure points that no bike fitting will likely resolve.
I found that on these long rides I would lose feeling in my pinky and ring finger. It appears this is common for bicyclists. As i understand it, this is caused by the constant long term pressure on the Ulnar nerve in the tunnel that runs below from the wrist into the hand. Prolonged pressure can cause damage that could require surgery. Not great.
I also have neck pain and upper back pain from looking up all the time while riding. Maybe other cyclist get used to this, or just shrug it off, but that’s not going to cut it for long. While my Brooks saddle does a great job supporting my sitz bones, I still get numb in my privates which is also less than ideal.
As a Buddhist I try to practice ahimsa (non-violence) and the collection of pain I feel when riding long distance on a traditional bicycle was not going to cut it. Enter the recumbent bicycle…