Friday, December 01, 2006

Uncomfortable....Not Any More!

I've been having problems lately getting comfortable on the bike, if you've read previous posts then you know that it's been driving me crazy. I've been experiencing left leg drop, right hip tilting forward and some left knee pain. I tried switching back to my old Sidis last night but the screws that I had weren't long enough to accommodate the cleats and some pedal wedges so I decided to make do with my Adidas. I finally figured that the best way to figure out what is causing my issue was to set up a video camera and tape myself from the back, front, and side to see what is happening when I pedal under load and when I spin easy. Maybe I was doing something differently or favoring a stronger leg or something when I used big gears, so I finally set that up last night. I watched the video and couldn't believe what I saw, and more importantly I couldn't believe I didn't really notice what was happening previous to seeing myself do it. Basically in my present seat position I was dropping my right heel big time on the downstroke and pedaling toes down with the left foot. It was so obvious that my right leg was longer than my left that I don't know how I haven't noticed that prior to yesterday. My seat height was basically set up in the middle of accommodating both legs..... too short for my right leg so I had to drop my heel to get the correct knee angle, and too tall for my left leg so I had to pedal toes down and drop my hip to reach the bottom of the pedal stroke. The hip drop on the left caused me to bring my right hip forward, also causing me to point my right foot in towards the bike, and my left foot away from the bike. My wife watched it with me and she was also thinking I was an idiot because she noticed it immediately as well and wondered how I didn't figure this out before. Soooo, after doing some measuring I had to go with 4 pedal wedges under the left cleat to lengthen it enough to measure up with the right leg. Once I had it set up so that each leg was even I raised the seat to alleviate the heel drop and sure enough, my left hip didn't drop, my right hip didn't go forward, me feet were straight ahead and I felt really comfortable for the first time in a long while. It was a good feeling to finally, well hopefully, figure out what was going on so that I can go in to next year feeling like I'm not unbalanced on the bike.
Anyways, last night I did ride for 1.75 hours on the trainer and did 7x12sec Stomps as well. Tonight is a rest day on the bike and because of our major snowstorm I'll be skipping the weight work so that I can get home and shovel. Tomorrow is going to be an iffy day as there still might be too much snow to ride safely but I'll do my best to get out on the cyclocross bike and I'll ride for as long as I can or until I deem it too unsafe to hit the road. I might have to do all or part of tomorrow's scheduled 3.5 hours of riding on the trainer, fun, fun. If I can even get away with doing half on the road and half on the trainer I'd be happy. Sunday is probably 2.5 hours on the trainer as it appears that it will be snowing again but we'll see if the forecasters are correct. Here is a pic of the wonderful snowfall (yeah, right!). Until next time..........

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