Egads! The clips on the bike are a strange and scary new thing for me. And yes, I fell. First time out folks. You can’t make this stuff up. (I did this yesterday after what was a great weekend. I got to see Red and my 20 mile long run was damn near perfect.)
Let me just say that I was sooooo embarrassed and frustrated that I may have shed a few tears and felt completely humiliated. Granted, me and the bike have a shaky relationship at best so this didn’t really help. (Dolly’s name might change to Bruiser.) I feel awful that I made my friends feel bad since they were there to help, but to be quite honest I was already in a weird mood so the tears were hard to stave off.
Basically, I did what all first time clip users do. I clipped in and fell over. Fortunately, I didn’t seriously hurt myself other than bruise my booty and ego. Navy Steve, Cay-SEE, and Little J assured me that this happens to everyone. But to further make myself feel better I came home and found this online from Bike 101:
“OK, we’ll finally answer the BIG question. Once you get used to clipless pedals, the chances of coming to a stop before exiting your pedal (and thus falling over) are greatly reduced. BUT…chances are, in that first day or two, you’ll forget that you need to twist your heel out (instead of pulling back) to unclip. By the time you recognize your mistake, it’s too late, as you’ve lost all forward speed. And, with no place to go but down…you get the picture. You will, in very slow motion, and nearly always with people around to see it happen, fall over. You’re not likely to get hurt, but it’s terribly embarrassing. And most likely there’s nothing that makes you so special that you’ll avoid the fate shared by just about everyone else.”
In other news, I have to take Dolly back to the shop because the rear derailleur sheared off right at the bolts. After my fall, Navy Steve was test driving Dolly and went to shift gears and that’s when it broke. It was so random. My bike buds said they’ve never seen this happen and the bike shop should fix it for free since the bike is brand new and I haven’t even ridden it yet. We’re certain the fall and the breakage are not related. Bikes fall constantly and aren’t supposed to just break like that. I’m trying not to look at all of this as a sign of impending cycling doom. And realize, of course, I’ll fall again. But I’m not a quitter and need to stop being so hard on myself. I will get this dammit!I’m very, very fortunate to have friends who are there to help and not point and laugh when I fall. Although, sometimes the pointing and laughing helps. I hope you are all enjoying your long weekends if you didn’t have to work. If you have any clip tips and/or fall down stories to help me feel better still, I’d appreciate them. Happy Monday!
It happens to all of us, seriously. I remember three occasions of the "stop and fall", since I use clips (that's around two years) and it always happened at busy intersections.
But it's not only that you forget to unclip… I enjoy doing the "unclip on the right, but lean to the left" move. Always a good conversation starter when you lay on the ground while a motorist is rolling down the window and asks if you are okay.
When I first got clips on my mountain bike I was riding the Sydney Dover Trails and saw a couple walking their horses (holding thier bridals). They were about 50 feet ahead of me, so I stopped to make sure I didn't startle the horses.
Well… I fell over. I startled the woman's horse, it reared-up, knocked the woman to the ground and ran away. The man's horse followed the first horse. I yelled to ask if the woman was ok (or had she been trampled?) and she just got up and yelled, "my horses!"
I saw them later on the trail and the woman just shot me the look of death.
LOL! Thanks Mike. That does help. 🙂
My new bike has clip in pedals. I think I'm just going to never, ever use them. Falling on a bike is my biggest bike fear. Well, that and getting hit by a car.
Like I told you yesterday – I fell before with my mountain bike. And when I think about it know – I think it was funny to look at.
One time I couldn't get my foot out and started to fall in slow motion and right before I hit the ground I got my foot out and stopped the fall. I am sure it looked funny.
Another time I just fell and couldn't do anything (maybe except cursing at the clips :-)). Thank god I never got hurt and the best thing is get up and start riding again… it will get better over time…
I am not sure about this but is it possible to change how hard it is to get in and out of the clips? I remember that with my second pair of shoes it was much easier to get in and out of the clips. I can't remember if it was the shoes or if we did something to the clips itself to make it easier. Maybe ask Navy Steve or Cay-See about it.
See this article for example on how to avoid falling. http://www.caree.org/bike101cliplesspedals.htm#Falling
hugs to you! everyone falls at first, and usually in slow motion. you'll get it!!! just don't play in traffic for a while.
Licking your computer screen is one way to clean it. hahahha.
I'll echo the stories…I fell on my first attempt at clipping in even after practicing on the bike trainer and riding in the yard. As soon as we went to head out I fell right over. Don't worry you will get used to it.
No worries, I feel a couple of times, even in my driveway!! The worst was when a bug flew into my shoe and I flipped out and smashed down.. It's all good no one saw LOL!!!
Sounds like Dolly is possessed! Get an exorcism done……. I've yet to fall, but I'm cool like that…… HA I used mine on the trainer before I went outside.
Hey, Awesome, Sam and I fell for each other on the first ride. 🙂 And the second, and the third, and maybe even the 8th. I quit counting. Just expect it's going to happen, but know it will get better. Dolly loves you.
I totally look like a 4 year-old on my bike…like someone who just got her training wheels off so I would have been right there with you on the crash and burn! You'll get it! I am needing to find a friend in my bike though because I am thinking of doing a duathlon this year!
I've thought about getting clips, but I'm just too darn scared. Hubs and I have a race coming up in June (that I haven't announced yet) and I want to get clips before that race, but honestly I'm still chicken that even by then I'll still fall over….
I just can't get over that we talked about your first fall Saturday night and then you fall the next day. Oh Boo…
My first fall with the clipless pedals was within 10 seconds of using it. I stopped at a red light, and then unclipped — learned really quickly you're supposed to unclip first, then stop, otherwise moving your heel will only cause the bike to tip over.
My worst fall was in traffic… The car in front of me stopped, so I put my foot down. And yep, forgot that foot was attached to bike. That one caused quite a bit of blood (and to this day I still get nervous riding with traffic, specially on an uphill when you don't have that much forward speed to begin with, and unclipping becomes tricky).
Now I'm nervous to get on a bike! "If B.o.B. fell… so would I!" but seriously… I would. Glad you didn't hurt-hurt yourself. Ya know as opposed to really hurting yourself. Ya know?
lord. I've had too much tea. I'm gonna go.
I fell my first time with the clips too. Only it was after a really successful ride and it wasn't until I was in my driveway congratulating myself that I realized I was at a complete stop and hadn't unclipped. Hence the slow motion fall down in my driveway. Nice, huh. No worries, Dolly will be good to you from now on! Don't change her gender quite yet!
You had me at "Goonies never say die!" Best. Movie. EVER!!