Some while ago I sold my road bike because it really didn't fit me and left me in pain when I rode it because I was reaching too far.
Now I've been road bike less for a while now and it does bug me as though I love my mountain bike there are things that a road bike does so much better such as climbing hills on roads and going really fast.
I was lamenting this to a coworker and another coworker said that he was selling a road bike that belonged to his daughter who he just lost from breast cancer. Pause. Really? Turns out that we are of similar height.
So he brought it in and even though it's not the smallest size available for women, it's smaller than the one I sold. After I rode it and measured it a bunch and agonized about it with Terri, I decided to buy it.
The oddest thing for me is that this bike used to belong to a woman who was younger than me, and who is gone. I feel as if I'm riding a ghost's bike. A very recent ghost. It's a weird feeling. I sometimes think I feel her old presence, but I could be imaging it too.
I have quite a bit of emotion tied up in bikes as it is and I'm trying to reassure myself that if this one doesn't work out that it's not a big deal and I can always get the 43cm frame instead. This one is a 47cm. The 43 is a sloping top tube, but has an "effective top tube length" that is an inch shorter.
The other thing is that buying a used bike is way cheaper than the 4 figure price that new bikes cost, so in once sense this is buying me time and giving me a chance to figure out if I love it enough to make time for it.
Bike riding used to be tied up with pain and frustration and feelings of failure for me as bikes didn't fit women very well in the 80's and I and a ton of other women were reaching too far, and leaning too far forward and hence getting pain in the crotch area. I was also getting hand/wrist pain because my tendinitis wasn't being properly treated as I was still thinking that I needed to work through the pain. Nope. The solution to Tendinitis is rest, ice, anti-inflamatories, and more rest. And then gradual reintroduction to the activity - and for heaven's sake stop feeling like a failure.
So while I'm worried about this new-to-me bike I'm telling myself that this really isn't a big deal and I should just enjoy it.