Thursday, April 12, 2012

How Not to Change A Bike Tire

I am not sure why this relationship is so strained lately. We used to be so close, things went so smoothly. We made and kept dates. You gave and I took.

But, these days it all feels like an uphill battle. I don’t know if you have changed, or if I am different. I just know that it is not the same. I have big goals for us, so we have got to get it together. Damn you, bike.

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The days when we used to spoon.

You may remember last week when I tried to get out the door for a ride, but was stopped in my tracks because I couldn’t find my riding shoes (which my son had hidden).

Today was to be a different story. I quickly and effortlessly made it out the door on this mild and gorgeous Colorado day. My plan was to ride to Rabbit Mountain, about 21 miles round trip. I love this ride because it is sort of challenging, with a steep climb at the end. My friend Michelle even joined me at the last minute. Perfection. (BTW, this is the mighty Michelle who encountered a mountain lion while on a run a couple of years ago. Go read her story HERE if you haven’t already).

I huffed and puffed my way to the top and snapped this picture.

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About two minutes after taking that picture and on my way down, my tire blew. When I say “blew” I mean let out all air in a split second, like the biggest bike fart you’ve ever heard. No problem. I had my spare tubes and CO2 (which I had never used before – this is foreshadowing for all of you English buffs).

I am one of those people who assumes things won’t happen, so I don’t bother learning how to deal with them when they do. Flat tire while driving my car? I would be screwed. That is what AAA is for. I know you smart ass cyclists out there can change a flat in 4 minutes (hell, I saw that Youtube video – get a life!). I have not had a flat on my bike for about ten years and I’m not even kidding. It’s a miracle I even had the tubes, etc with me.

With Michelle’s help, I finally got the old tube out and the new tube in (TWSS).

bethroadrabbitmtn

I love this picture because it shows perfect bike safety. It is a very good idea to sit in the middle of the road and change your tire when a car is coming. Idiot move #1.

I got the CO2 canister ready and proceeded to blow up the tire so much it blew, rupturing my eardrum (well, not really, but felt like it). Idiot move #2. I finally got the second tube in and put the CO2 in the canister. Before I could even blow up the tire, the CO2 exploded everywhere and I’m sure it was my fault but I still don’t know what happened. Idiot move #3. I was out of options.

I called my dad for a pussy pick up. I felt twelve years old again. Please come get me, I am stranded. Bring me a vanilla milkshake from McDonalds and a shoulder to cry on.

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My dad likes to lounge in the back of his Forester.
I know what you are thinking, apple does not fall far from tree.

That’s my story. We start couple's therapy Tuesday night. Trek needs to shape the hell up.

Ever have a tire blow out? Was it during a race? I have never had a flat during a race. Knock on wood.

What’s a recent mishap you’ve had while working out? I have mishaps all of time and I don’t even do it to have something to write about. Despite what you might think, they aren't all poop mishaps. Last week I was attacked by dogs in Montana. A few weeks before that I feel on the trail banged up my chin.

Who comes to rescue you when your ride/run goes bad? I can usually find someone. Ken, my parents, the barista from Starbucks.

SUAR

54 comments:

  1. I would have to call my husband for a pussy pick up.

    That forester is OCD clean btw. Is it brand new?? lol Any new car of mine has looked like that for exactly 15 minutes until one of my kids dumps an orange soda on the carpet.

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    1. Yes, this pic was actually taken a few years ago, right when he got it. Good eye!!

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  2. Yup. First ever 70.3 a few years ago. I was so pissed off. Since then, my record is 3 flats in one bike ride haha. Had to bum stuff off of the other riders for the last fix.

    Pussy Pickup... sounds like a hillbilly on date night haha.

    Glad you didn't get hurt... or run over in the middle of the road for that matter haha.

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  4. I seriously laughed out loud at the comment under the third picture!

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  5. Haha.. your posts always make me laugh- I <3 you :) Are you from the city- because thats the same kind of road safety I use.. i.e.: you want to cross the busy street, jump out in front of the cars- they have to stop, no? I mean where else were you going to go? Glad your dad came to the rescue- did he actually bring that milkshake?

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  6. I seriously couldn't love a picture more than the one of you sitting in the street with a car coming up on you. It was nice of you to keep the bike nice and safe off the road. Kind of shit I would totally do.

    I have all kind of mishaps - none that are springing to mind but none-the-less they happen.

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    1. I know!! I always put others and material things before myself.

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  7. That is too funny! I just told my hubby that I won't do a tri unless I have a "team" to take care of my bike!!! I have NEVER changed a bike tire or any tire for that matter!!

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  8. Oh my goodness. You look like you are about to get hit by that car!! I would have thrown my tire out of frustration. I don't handle setbacks very well.

    Hmm, I haven't had any recent mishaps (knock on wood). I've fallen off the treadmill before, and I have scars on my knees, elbow and hip from falling while running. Actually, someone asks me every single time I wear a skirt what happened to my knees. I have to explain that those are scars from a YEAR ago, they just look like fresh bruises, but they're permanent. Lucky me. Sexy legs.

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  9. Love this story! I too have all the crap needed to change a flat or two, as well as a $20 to pay the first person who stops to change it for me. My "little" bag under my seat is so big that a biker friend asked if I had a spare bike in there....hmmmmm. Easier than changing a flat? I take full advantage of my husband when I have a cycling mishap. Thank goodness for better phone reception and our apps that allow us to always find each other. Not only do I lack bike maintenance skills, but zero sense of direction. It's a love/hate relationship with my trusty Trek. Once I am out on the open road, I love it, but the preparation and "what ifs" of biking make it hard to get out the door sometimes. Running is so much simpler. :)

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  10. yeah as cool as CO2 is... I opt for the reliability of having a pump

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  11. You totally need to frame the picture of you sitting in the middle of the road. Or have it blown up to poster size and hand it at conferences. "This is me, changing my tire. It's pretty awesome because SAFETY FIRST, you know?"

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  12. Courtesy of Colorado's "thorn season" we've changed our stupid tires more times than I care to admit. They currently have "thorn proof" stuff going on but I still don't trust it. Luckily we found out the hard way that you should have tubes with you when we were only a mile away from home - easy enough to hike a bike that far! And that C02 isn't cheap - I probably wouldn't try it out til I needed it either!

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  13. I was with MattyO on one of his double blow out rides. And that isn't even counting the non-tire "blowouts".

    Thankfully *knock on wood* I have only had one on the road flat when I nailed a water filled pothole going downhill at 20+mph in the rain. I had my hands on the brakes but with the rain, I just wasn't slowing down. The pothole brought me to a stop though - a nearly over the handle bars stop. My CO2 cartridge froze (as in ice) to my tire valve though. Apparently this a comment effect of wet CO2 cartridges??? Dry ice or something. I had to puff hot air on it thaw it out.

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    1. YES that his what happened!! The CO2 came out like dry ice and sprayed everywhere. WTF?

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  14. I was spoiled for a long time before my road bike because my mountain bike has tubeless tires with sealant in them. 90% of the time if I go over a thorn or something, it seals itself for the rest of the ride. My roadbike is a different story. I had to practice at home for a bit. I too have misused CO2. They work great if they work, but they can be totally unreliable to. Best to carry a pump for back up.

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  15. I love how you're about to get run over and your friend is taking a picture of you... These are the sort of friends I have too! My dad or husband (I also married a Ken) are my go-to guys. My brother would pick me up but the price is high... He'd totally make fun of me for years to come.

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  16. OK....why do you make me laugh out loud so often? You sitting in THE ROAD ...smart. Your dad lying in the back of his car...priceless. The whole story....bwahaha...just makes me laugh.

    Thanks...I needed that today. ;-)

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  17. umm,I would be in the same boat. I do not like (take the time) to know in advance how to do anything, figure (pray) it won't ever happen. I would def need to call for back up if my tire blew out. even though I have the bike fanny pack emergency kit too. no idea.

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  18. The front tire! How did you get so lucky? I've never had a blowout or leak on a front tire. Ever. Lots on the back though.

    I posted a pic of my bloody hand a few days ago. Blood and everything. You should be happy. Well, not a lot of blood. In fact, not much at all. But it was oozing very nicely.

    CO2 are tricky. I carry a small bike pump to at least get the tire hard enough to get somewhere.

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  19. Hey we have the same bike! I had 3 flats on one ride (not the Trek) that left me calling for pick-up. Not much you can do when you go through 3 tubes in the middle of nowhere with no one to bum off of.

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  20. At least helmets were being worn while in the road. Safety first! Last flat I had was at work. I couldn't change my tire and had to walk home, get my car, pick up my bike and figure out how to change my tire the next day. It took all day! I really hate flats.

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  21. Oooh nooo.... I have just been obsessing about having a flat in an upcoming race next weekend. My pussy call is always to my husband and he bails me out every time, but in a race I am pretty sure they frown on pussy help. I decided that I have been lucky too long during races and I am worried my day is coming. I actually watched the You Tube thing this morning before your blog! I may choose to bury my head in the sand and think nothing will happen or I may just choose to sit in the middle of the road in my cute bike shorts and helmet!

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  22. My friends tire blew, LOUDLY, as we were passing a shooting range. I thought they were shooting at us and about hit the ditch. Proud moment.
    I can fix a flat, if you got about 20min. Why is it so hard?
    I ride on Armadillos so I never get flats. Knock on wood. I know they are slower but I will give up a few minutes a ride for slower tires than 20-30min for a flat.

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  23. SUAR, You need BRIGHTER bike clothes (and a small pump attached to your frame)!! It's so hard to see all that black and gray from a car. Please believe me--I have credentials--I was hit by a car on my bike while wearing a gray top/black bottoms. No bueno.

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  24. Oh my gosh you ate totally cracking me up! Well I would be screwed too, times 2 I don't know how to change a car tire or bike tire...thank goodness a tire didn't blow while I was traveling to Florida without my husband! I always call my husband if he is unavailable I start down the list, bro in law, dad in law, anyone from my husbands family company..I'm not proud thank goodness I always carry my cell too! ! You are so funny!

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  25. I am bad about learning how to fix my bike. My first tri, I forgot my pump and hadn't checked to be sure my tires were even inflated properly. They were not. I rode the Boulder sprint try course for 14 miles before anyone with a pump that worked on my mountain bike came along. Last year on my road bike for the first time, my seat wasn't tightened enough( by me) and fell all the way down, making for a very uncomfortable and silly looking ride!

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  26. I love the car barreling down on you! That's the kind of thing that would happen to me. My only major mishap was not being able to find the start line for my very first race. I came running up over the (very frickin' steep) hill just in time to hear the MC say, Lemme count yinz down! 10-9-8... Did I mention it was a 5K? And I had walked/run approximately 4 miles trying to find the @#$% start?!?! Yeah. Since it was my very first race I knew I was guaranteed a PR. I went with that...

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  27. Oh man, so sad. I just bought a new bike and the bike shop guy told me how to use the CO2 thingies, but I couldn't tell you what he said. I better pay closer attention!

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  28. I have a tube that I ride with but nothing to blow it up when it actually "blows". Thankfully, I haven't had the need for it yet either. I'm pretty sure that I'll be calling for a pick up when that happens!

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  29. I have never had a pussy pickup but my husband blows tubes all the time. I then call myself the weiner wagon !

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  30. Good thing you live in CO where they are a little friendlier to people doing athletic things on the roads! If it were here, that car would have just ran over you. And your friend. And probably hit your bikes too, just to prove a point. Which is why I haven't been brave enough to "learn" to ride yet. I want to, but I'm terrified of being hit by a car. Guess we really will have to move back to CO!

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    1. Baaaaaaahaaa. Prove their point. Damn truth

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  31. I'd call my husband. Haven't had a flat yet, but I know the day will come. Hoping I can deal with it.

    Chrissie Wellington had a double co2 mess up in an Ironman, so you're in good company...

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  33. Fantastic post and thread. Super excited to use "pussy pick up" and "weiner wagon" in upcoming conversations. Was also dying to do a TWSS ("that's what SHE said!") when someone wrote about "getting it hard enough to ride on." So glad to know I'm not alone in being a tire changing wimp. I ride with a pal so I have a backup (and don't have to call hubby whose job is a bit too important to scootch out and get me out of my latest mess....

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  34. My husband picks me up (only once so far) and I've never used CO2 cartridges. Only a pump. Only pickup I've had was followed by 4 days in the hospital so that one was justified. I'm kind of stubborn about finishing my rides/runs/swims. :)

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  35. Last year when I was training for that Century ride, I must have told myself I'd go to REI or one of the bike store classes to learn how to change a tire. I never did (imagine!) and I was blessed to never get a flat. Now, I fell about 30 times and let's not forget the derailleur that broke at Elephant Rock, but never a flat.

    I'm sure I just jinxed that. And my parent's don't live here (actually, they are not even alive, but regardless, they never did live here - ha).

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    1. I mean, I must have told myself about 30 dozen times. Why am I too lazy not to go?

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  36. This is largely why I don't really want to ride my bike far away from my house :P How lame am I? LOL

    So glad you had a phone and that phone had service and you were able to get a pick-up!

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  37. Had a flat tire years ago cycling home at midnight from a girlfriends house, so I just ran home (11km) pushing the bike. (don't have cycle shoes)

    Love your story, thank you.

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  38. Hate changing flats, takes me FOREVER. Last time I had one I had 6 miles to go, so I pumped it up, rode a mile, pumped it, rode another mile, etc. Finally rode the last mile on the rim! (lame) I keep telling my self to just sit on my porch and practice, still haven't done that.

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  39. I am ROLLING!!! I can change a flat on my car with no problem. Ok, that's a lie. Last flat I had took me longer to figure out how to drop the donut than to actually change it. Except for that unfortunate incident with one of the lugnuts...that sheared off...

    I remember changing a bike tire...once. It sucked way worse than changing a car/minivan tire.

    I had a near/semi mishap trying to run yesterday. I say trying because I should have used my inhaler before starting and couldn't breathe, so it was run until I couldn't breathe, walk until I could, repeat. The track is being repaved, and closed so I was on the sidewalk around the field along with a bunch of walkers, and forgetting how uneven the sidewalk is, I wasn't paying attention and tripped hard. I am sure I flailed, but managed to start running again to avoid falling on my face. Only thing hurt was my pride. LOL

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  40. I had to change a flat last year on a bike trail. I refused all offers of help from passing cyclists because I was convinced they were all rapists/kidnappers/had creepy things in their basement. It took an effing long time and my spare blew a few miles later. I gave up on that ride and called my husband to pick me up.

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  41. Funny post. Love you sitting in the road with the car coming. Priceless!
    I had 3 flat tires to my husbands 0. I STILL don't know how to change one.

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  42. Whoa! Look at you and your bike getting it on! PG-13!! ;)

    I would be lost if I had to do this!!

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  43. Thank you for this post! I really needed it. I am having one of those days!

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  44. Funny post, I am glad it all worked out.
    No, I have never had to change a flat. Simply pick up the cell and call.That is what there for right!!

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  45. Its official, you're my girl crush. I think we may have been separated at birth only I'm the twin that got all the food LOL. I'm glad your daddy could come to the rescue!

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  46. Because you inspire me so much, I may or may not have talked about pooping mid-run on my most recent post. Thought you might like to know.

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  47. Bike accident 3 Saturday's ago. Hal come to our rescue since we crashed in front of his business.

    I've had tires blow and the CO2 not do its job and have to call SAG (Karen) to come pick me up. Totally sucked.

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  48. I once had 4 flats within a 17 mile stretch of secluded trail in October. Walking six miles to the car was not only FUN in cycling shoes it was also COLD as a mother. SUCKS. Turns out, my spokes were whacked out and needed to be trued so they kept popping each successive tube until I was fresh out. AND I didn't bring any money with me - genius! So I couldn't even buy a tube. SIGH.

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