Waking Up From My Bikemare

Those of you who have been following the blog for a while know that getting a bike that I can ride for triathlons and, ultimately, my IM has been an ongoing bikemare. First a friend gifted me a mountain bike which I named Clyde that I soon had to get out of jail.  Then it turned out that the Mountain Bike didn’t fit me (to the tune of kicking myself in the stomach over 20,0000 times) My coach finally found a road bike that would work for me and my beautiful Jamis Ventura Race Femme was shipped from Austin.

Large box containing a bike at my front door

Came home to my new bike at the door!

Then the real “fun” began.

I have short legs, short arms, a very long torso and a big stomach and, apparently, this makes being fit on the bike difficult.  I took my bike to a local bike shop to get it assembled and fit.  The assembly went fine, the fitting not so much.  The set up wouldn’t allow me to sit high enough to avoid the stomach kicking.  We tried a longer stem and he told me to give it a few weeks.

I did and it wasn’t working.  In addition to kicking myself, I wanted to kill the saddle with fire. So I went to another local shop and he suggested that I get high rise bars (also known as monkey bars)  Um, no.  After asking around it seemed that a stem riser would be the best thing, unfortunately my cables weren’t long enough to accommodate the additional height.  So I went looking for a bike shop that would work with me.

Very happily, I found The Unlikely Cyclist – a shop owned and operated by self-described “larger women.”  The experience was amazing, Lisa was able to help me find not just a good fit on the bike, but was also aware of the ways that clothing choices could help, and the saddle that was likely to work best for me.  And it all worked great!   Of course, I bit it in the first 30 seconds of my first ride in the parking lot, but at least I have a bike I can ride!

Bike Done

I’m not going to lie, I’m freaking out a little because I’ve got five months left and I’ve not ridden even one mile on the bike off the trainer, but I’m going to make it happen.

In the meantime the IM in general, and the bike in particular, have become really expensive, so I decided to have a sale of my stuff  to help pay for some of this – you get books and dance classes, I get spandex clothes and bike parts. Everybody wins! The sale includes books, DVDs, and name-your-own-price digital downloads, the links are below and I’ve set up a page at https://ironfatblog.wordpress.com/support-my-ironman/ if you feel like sharing this sale with others. No money?  No problem!  If you feel like it, you can leave a comment saying something encouraging, that’s incredibly helpful as well!

Here are the links!

Book 2My book – Fat:  The Owner’s Manual 

This is a book for anyone, of any size.  It’s about living life in the body you have now, and making decisions about what you want in the future. (more info here, but you must use the links below to get the sale prices.)

E-book – Name Your Own Price (you’ll receive your file within 24 hours)

Book with shipping to the US included:  $15.00

Book with shipping to Canada included:  $20.00

Book with other International Shipping included:  $25.00

DVD CoversDance Classes – Every Body Dance Now!

Each DVD includes a warm up/cool down and a beginner, intermediate and advanced class with options to make things easier or harder.  You can buy the DVDs or download individual classes. Full descriptions are here but you must use the links below to get the deal!

Downloads (you’ll receive your file within 24 hours)

Volume 1

Volume 2


Both Volumes

Volume 1

Volume 2

Thank you so much for your support!!!!!

About danceswithfat

Hi, I’m Ragen Chastain. Speaker, Writer, Dancer, Choreographer, Marathoner, Soon to be IRONMAN, Activist, Fat Person.
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10 Responses to Waking Up From My Bikemare

  1. I LOVE your Jamis bike!!! Yay for the ladies at The Unlikely Cyclist!
    I’ve had a few unpleasant experiences with my road bike recently that I’ve commiserated with a fellow female cyclist at work about, and it involves the unfortunate result of putting too much pressure on delicate lady-bits when you’re in an aero position, sweating, wearing a chamois in your pants and cycling for long periods of time. If you’re interested in me forwarding what I’ve learned to you too, to use as you see fit for your experience, I’m happy to share. Currently, I’m awaiting full healing of my bits before I get back in the proverbial saddle.
    Yay, you!


  2. Liz says:

    You’re awesome…that is all.


  3. Oh what a sexy bike! Love it!


  4. You’re amazing! What a rockstar.


  5. Reblogged this on BraveGirl™ and commented:
    If you haven’t been following this dancer’s athletic challenges, you really should. She has a wonderful sense of humor and is a great person!


  6. fl_commenter says:

    People are going to tell you that you need clipless pedals for more power. You really don’t. Just work on your pedaling smoothness. It will be one less thing to worry about finding the right equipment for, and you already have enough of that on your plate.

    Elite competitive cyclists generate most of their power on the downstroke



  7. Toogz says:

    You’re doing great Ragen! Just make sure you’re taking adequate rest days. Muscle builds when your resting. Knowing you and your personality, you probably get tempted to over train easily – always pushing yourself for the best!


  8. Megan says:

    Great job!! Do you have any insights about hydration and nutrition during the bike ride? I just ordered some of those gel packs. I started training back in March and am finally at a point where I need more than just a bottle of water to get me through. And I can sometimes feel my energy level depleting – especially when I ride right after breakfast. It stinks because if I eat too much, I can’t really train. But I am starting to feel weak in the middle of my rides so I am hoping the gel packs will help.

    BTW – I am not training for a Ironman. Just hoping to do a couple of shorter bike marathons.


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