#15: What the idiot driver did today…

After riding suburbia for 8 months, I have learnt to classify three types of risky drivers.
1. The Taxi. They get close but my hope is they are professional enough not to hit me.
2. The ‘P’ plater: Provisional drivers have no concept of how close they are, it worries me.
3. The Soccer Mums car: Do you have a car shaped like this or bigger and higher?

Car

To me they don’t belong in the city. Many drivers of these type of vehicles think they are invincible, they think they own the road, they are always in a hurry, they often come too close and they rarely show patience. These drivers are by far the worst on the roads (in my opinion) and are my biggest risk.

Anyhow, that’s enough venting. Overall, I think drivers are pretty good and I am usually treated with respect as I ride.

But they will never be perfect so sometimes it’s up to us to fill the gaps of their mistakes.

Today, I realised a safety tip about being in traffic that I felt compelled to share. Check the animation below. It may be the 1% difference between being on a bike or in an ambulance….

The 1%, it’s a theme I will talk about another day but today, it’s not about an idiot driver, it’s about what’s not in the front of a driver’s mind, and that is you.  By thinking ahead, riding defensively and being prepared, the result is if they make a mistake (and they will), you are ready to react and move on.

The road, it takes you places – just make sure you do your best to get there safely.
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#14: You have to learn to love hills!

Do Them
I look back now after 6 months hard riding and realise that hills don’t scare me like they used too.  I have put in the work, got over the hills, the worst is behind me and the future is now not that far ahead.

When I began riding and started to go distances greater than 50kms (30 miles) I discovered that whichever direction I rode from home, I was going to face hills. So I hit the forums looking for suggestions to avoid some of the bigger hills and basically was told…

 

“If you want to ride anywhere, you have to learn to love hills.”
and that has been my mantra every since.

After recent ventures out on a couple of my solo rides and some organized spring rides, distances of 100kms with many hills now don’t seem to be a problem. Sure, they hurt a bit and I puff and pant a lot but after completing one, I am soon thinking about the next one.

But there are a couple of hills Continue reading

#13: My favourite must have clothing accessories

Undershort and Armwarmers

Once you have been riding a while and tried a few things to wear through summer, spring, autumn and winter, you begin to appreciate the finer details that make a difference.

For me, the enlightenment came last Sunday when I started the day at 15 degrees C and finished 5 hours and 100kms later at 33C, still wearing my undershirt with my bike shirt zipped up.  How is this possible?  Two layers of clothes yet I didn’t want or need to remove them.  They almost felt like another skin and I felt better for having them on.

At Standwell Tops

So my #1 accessory pick is Continue reading