…I just don’t know how I feel about the step-through.
Republic now makes those gay Dutch bikes and, more importantly, front-loading cycle trucks.
Republic makes them for less than $1,000, by a lot, which is WAY better than I can say for any other cycle trucks in the US (I have yet to look into gay Dutch bikes, because quite frankly I’m not sure I can handle the step-through, but I’ll be damned if they don’t have the front AND back rack which is pretty appealing). In fact, cycle trucks are pretty damn near nonexistent in the US. So.
But with the front-loading cycle truck I can keep an eye on my cat while I ride him through the streets of the big city, as I won’t have a car or be within walking distance of my preferred vet (Bansfield Hospital — my cat has health insurance and I don’t).
Of course, then I’d have to plan to have a third bicycle. In a studio apartment. With limited wall-mounting space. Plus, I don’t really see wall-mounting a cycle truck/gay Dutch bike.
Then again, maybe I’ll luck out and my apartment building will have bike storage (at least one ad thus far has mentioned it!)…even if I have to keep the polo bike and regular single speed on the wall, not having to keep The Big Heavy Car Replacement in the apartment would be useful.
So holy balls is it hot in my apartment. And tomorrow is supposed to be ridiculous. And I haven’t been riding my bicycle, which makes me sad.
So! I just went out for a nice 2 a.m. ride down one of the major roads (pleasantly empty), 10.5 miles in 48 minutes. Not great, but there were a lot of pretty big hills so I can’t complain too much (and that should put me in line for roughly 12mph, which seems to be my average).
As for weights this week, I went to the gym on Tuesday and Thursday. Tuesday wasn’t great, I went down a little on my lifts but was happy I did them. Thursday was pretty sweet — new barbell squat PR (120x5!) and new OHP PR (50x2…I didn’t think I could do more than 40, so I’m happy with it). Can’t wait to go on Sunday night! It feels so far away.
I think the reason I’ve been stalling in my lifts is because I’ve been doing way too many warm-up sets. Like I see other people doing ridiculous numbers of high-weight sets, but those people have been lifting consistently for much much longer than I have. For example, I couldn’t get past 115 on my squats, but when I cut out a few sets and made my warm-up a little higher (starting at 65 instead of 45) and only doing three sets 10lbs apart (so 65/75/85 before jumping up to 105 instead of 45/65/85 or 95 and then +5lbs to failure), 120 actually came pretty easily. Next I’m going to try eliminating the 45s and 50s from my bench to see if I can’t break that 70lb barrier (or at least get a full 70x5, I always fail at like 2 or 3).
I don’t play sports. I don’t like them and I definitely am too afraid of hurting myself for contact sports.
That said, Wednesday night bike polo has got to be one of my all-time, number one most favorite things, and is definitely one of the biggest highlights of my week.
A lot of folks don’t know what bike polo is, but it’s super simple — it’s horse polo, on bikes. Or, if you don’t know what horse polo is, it’s like hockey, on bikes. There are teams of 3 vs 3, with one person hanging back in the goal (teams will often change up who’s on goal mid-game though, there’s no designated “goalie”), and the others ride around the court with their polo mallets (ski poles cut down with pieces of PVC pipe attached to the end), chasing a street hockey ball (drained of its fluids) and trying to make goals on the other team. First team to 5 wins.
You don’t just play on ANY bike, though. A single speed (low gear) with one brake (usually the back brake unless you want to die, and usually the lever is on the left unless you’re left handed), straight bars and (usually) bigger mountain-bike tires. 26-29inches, generally, though some folks play on 700s. Bikes are generally a little too small for the rider, or at least lower to the ground than their normal rides. Most people have wheel covers to help block the ball and protect spokes from mallets and pedals. A few folks ride fixies, but most have a freewheel, and I know at least one guy here rides clipless though I have no idea how good an idea that really is or how many other people do. Oh, and since you’ll no doubt be running into walls and people, the more indestructible your bike is, the better.
Perfect example of a polo bike and mallet:
I still need to make wheel covers for my bike, but other ‘n that I’m all set up.
I think one of my favorite things about polo is how unofficial and DIY it is — people have a whole range of different franken-bikes and homemade mallets and some people wear lots of gear and some people have none and there are hockey gloves and all kinds of mismatched things. Teams play on street hockey rinks, on tennis courts, in parking lots and garages…and since it only takes 6 people to play, it’s easy to get a team together (hell, my dad is trying to get a little polo group together in his town).
I highly suggest searching around for a polo group in your area and checking it out. Most places are welcoming to newcomers, or even if you’re not sure about playing, at least WATCH a few games. It’s fun!