IPB

Welcome Guest ( Log In | Register )



6 Pages V   1 2 3 > »   
Reply to this topicStart new topic
Have you ever felt old, worn out, and defeated?, First ride in 20 years, on my new-school Strowler
MichaelJohnson
post Apr 9 2010, 11:21 PM
Post #1


Novice
**

Group: Members
Posts: 62
Joined: 1-April 10
From: Muskegon, MI
Member No.: 26,913



The weather finally cleared up today so I decided to take my 4 year-old daughter out for our first ride on our new bikes.
Here's a pic of my new Strowler:
(IMG:http://i1033.photobucket.com/albums/a413/johnsom5/strowler2.jpg)
(My daughter's is a Dora bike (IMG:style_emoticons/default/tongue.gif) )

After watching Youtube videos of Matt Wilhelm and dreaming of doing tricks like I used to do in the 80's, I was exciting to get back on the saddle again - keeping in mind the old saying "it's just like riding a bicycle, you never forget".

Well, apparently, there are many lessons I need to re-learn... like how to ride a bike, period.
Can someone tell me whether new-school bikes are just harder to ride than older bikes or am I really that rusty?!?!
I had expected to start out slow and pull off a simple hang-five after maybe a couple of attempts.
After about a half-dozen feeble attempts to get the rear end up, only to see it unceremoniously lift up a few inches and then flop back down to earth, I decided to give my next attempt a little more umph. I ended up going abruptly past my balance point (which seemed like hit or miss - more miss than hit though) and slammed one foot on the ground in front of me to stop the ensuing face-plant and slammed one knee into the handlebars. This was NOT what I had in mind!

After a few more tries and a few more banged up knees, my ego was really starting to bruise as much as my knees were. So, after swallowing a little bit of pride, I figured that I'd do a "stoppy" type of trick rather than a rolling one. So, I attempted to do a 180 endo (I think that's what you call it), and then ride it out backwards. My 180 ended up being a 90 followed by another foot plant.
Ok, maybe I'll just sit my butt down, push back and just try to ride it backwards without doing a 180. Only to make it a couple of feet before, you guessed it, another foot plant.

The bunny hop was next. Front wheel - up. I pointed my toes down, bent my knees, and thrusted my body up in the air with all I got! I felt my spirits get as high as the rear wheel did - one inch, at best. (Maybe my bike has bad bunny hopping geometry! (IMG:style_emoticons/default/laugh.gif) )

By this time, I'm as equally frustrated as I am dumbfounded. I used to do just about every trick in the book BITD but I couldn't even do a bunny hop?!?! Come on!

To save face, I tried to pull off a wheelie. I mean, I had to resurrect my dignity somehow... everyone can do a wheelie, right? I remember pulling off wheelies on MTBs and roadbikes as recent as last summer. Heck, I owned a sport bike and was able to have enough control in balance and bravado to do 70mph wheelies. Clearly, doing a wheelie on a lil' 20 incher could be done without little incident.

I pull up next to my daughter, who's concentrating on keeping her bike straight while her training wheels are doing their thing. I tensed up my leg muscles, told myself "you can do this", pulled a little on the bars and pumped a little with my legs and...

I open my eyes, look up at my daughter as she's staring down at her daddy - who, incidentally is laying on his back. She smiles at me. I smile back. No laughing, no ridiculing. She merely continues on riding and calls out "come on, Daddy!". I watch her as she rides off towards the sunset. I pick up my bike (and my dignity) and, just like my daughter, I ride on too.

Back at home, I get my daughter ready for bed. The images of my 36 yr old body, flailing around on my $1500 bike and making a fool out of himself kept haunting me. "Did I make a mistake by buying this bike?" - I told myself. "What was I thinking?" "Am I really that rusty or would anybody else have the same problem?". I felt like such a loser. A failure. A poser with a nice bike and no talent to use it properly. My daughter gave me a big hug and said "I love you daddy!". She cuddled up with her blanket and I laid my aching bones next to her as I stared at my beautiful little girl before she fell asleep. Not once, in all of my futile attempts at reliving my childhood this afternoon, did my little girl see me as the failure that I painted myself to be. In her eyes, I was a God on that bike. I went into this experience expecting to accomplish some amazing tricks and come out feeling like a king. What I got was a chance to feel the wheels roll beneath me, the wind flow around me, and the gaze of an angel looking upon me.

Today was a good first day on the bike.

Ride on.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
PKSlacker
post Apr 10 2010, 12:04 AM
Post #2


Novice
**

Group: Members
Posts: 34
Joined: 8-April 10
From: iowa via arizona
Member No.: 27,004



and that, folks, is a cool story! in time man, in time. hit the grass and wear some pads. its ok to be old and hackish for a bit longer till ya figure it out.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
MichaelJohnson
post Apr 10 2010, 12:11 AM
Post #3


Novice
**

Group: Members
Posts: 62
Joined: 1-April 10
From: Muskegon, MI
Member No.: 26,913



Thanks PK! I'm going to rest my bones and hopefully try again tomorrow.
Knee pads and shin guards are on my list for sure.
Welcome, btw!
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Lonewolf
post Apr 10 2010, 05:14 AM
Post #4


VBMX Hall Of Famer
Group Icon

Group: Site Supporter
Posts: 4,801
Joined: 22-May 08
Member No.: 15,933



36 ain't old man. I'm 37, almost 38. Now THAT'S old.

Just keep riding and it may never come back entirely, but to a great extent, it WILL come back.

This picture is of Stu Thomsen at 51 y/o. None of us have any excuses.

Attached File(s)
Attached File  stompin_stu_styling_on_a_cruiser.jpg ( 32.65K ) Number of downloads: 72
 
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
MichaelJohnson
post Apr 10 2010, 06:44 AM
Post #5


Novice
**

Group: Members
Posts: 62
Joined: 1-April 10
From: Muskegon, MI
Member No.: 26,913



You're just a young pup like me then!
I sure didn't feel old until I realized how rusty I was on that bike.
I'm 6'0" now, (I'm pretty sure I was 6'1" in highschool) and used to be able to dunk a basketball. Late last year, I was invited to play indoor volleyball at a local school. I used to play beach and coached it as well. Well, being that I was in a gym, I saw all the basketball hoops and decided to test out my hopping skills. I barely got high enough to touch the net, let alone grab the rim to dunk a ball!!!

Oh, and after watching Axlepeg's video on Youtube and seeing his display of both old school and new school skills, I had such great enthusiasm and hope of doing the same with a little bit of practice.

I guess I should give myself a little bit of credit though. BITD, I used to bust my shins, drop my bike, and ride it all day and everyday until I got good at what I did. I haven't touched a BMX bike in 20 years. I need to be a little patient with myself and remember that I bought this bike because riding gave me such joy back then as I'm sure it will now.

Oh, and Stu is the man! I wasn't really into the racing scene back then but I at least knew who he was. I read a post on here about all of our members commenting about him seeing him race again. To see him dominate like that still, no matter what is age is now, must have been awesome! So, you're right Lonewolf, we don't have any excuses.

Thanks for the post, the pic, and the encouragement!
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
midschool22
post Apr 10 2010, 08:59 AM
Post #6


Novice
**

Group: Members
Posts: 50
Joined: 26-December 08
Member No.: 19,380



Don't feel so bad. A lot of us are in the same boat. Just keep at it. Take a peek at these two videos. Mark "Rad Dad" Dandridge got back into it at 33 in 2003. The second video is from today. Persistence pays off.

http://vimeo.com/10745157

http://vimeo.com/10774025
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
upsetbmx
post Apr 10 2010, 10:40 AM
Post #7


Expert
****

Group: Members
Posts: 224
Joined: 20-November 04
From: austin tx
Member No.: 4,948




there are a lot of athletes in their 30s and 40s who are in great shape. you just have to get out there and ride every day.

if you flip your stem over (upright rather than inverted) it should raise your bars up about an inch. that will help make the bike feel more comfortable.

Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
joelwitte
post Apr 10 2010, 12:34 PM
Post #8


AA Pro
******

Group: Members
Posts: 2,071
Joined: 7-April 09
From: peru il
Member No.: 21,182



yep, just keep riding, it'll come back like lonewolf said, maybe not all of it, but the majority will, just give it time
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
BS
post Apr 10 2010, 12:35 PM
Post #9


The other CA10
*******

Group: Members
Posts: 8,844
Joined: 9-April 04
From: Not so serious about much / Oakdale, CA
Member No.: 3,545



QUOTE (MichaelJohnson @ Apr 9 2010, 10:21 PM) *
What I got was a chance to feel the wheels roll beneath me, the wind flow around me, and the gaze of an angel looking upon me.

What it's really all about, Michael "not the Olympic Sprinter" Johnson.

QUOTE (MichaelJohnson @ Apr 10 2010, 05:44 AM) *
I need to be a little patient with myself...

Exactly what I was going to tell you. My first couple of years back were very humbling but I did eventually get to the point where I was able to do pretty much everything I wanted to do again. Just be patient. Give yourself time.

Welcome back.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Sirdigalot
post Apr 10 2010, 12:57 PM
Post #10


Intermediate
***

Group: Members
Posts: 172
Joined: 8-October 09
From: andertucky
Member No.: 24,334



awesome story just have fun it will come back at 45 i still feel like a kid every time i ride
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post

6 Pages V   1 2 3 > » 
Reply to this topicStart new topic
1 User(s) are reading this topic (1 Guests and 0 Anonymous Users)
0 Members:

 

Lo-Fi Version Time is now: 20th August 2014 - 10:33 AM





This Space
Respectfully Donated
Stay Strong Stephen Murray

Support Vintage By Using These Links For Your BMX Travel NO priceline hotel cancellation or change fees