Oct 29

Foot Loose

As planned, I was able to do my long bike ride today.  It was a 36 mile ride out to Grand Haven.  Usually an uneventful ride, I had a bit of an equipment malfunction along the way.  I was about 20 miles into the ride as I approached a red light.  As I slowed down, I twisted my right foot to unclip from my pedal.  Except my foot didn’t come free.  I tried again and realized it was stuck.  Thankfully, I was able to quickly unclip my left foot and avoid tipping over at a standstill in the middle of traffic.  That would have been embarrassing. Despite unclipping, I still almost tipped over because I am so used to balancing on my right foot at a stop; leaning left, instead of right, just seemed awkward.

After I got through the light, I pulled over to inspect my bike.  I found that the cleat on my right shoe was missing a bolt and the second bolt was loose.  I ended up taking a bolt from the left shoe so that my primary foot for stopping had both bolts.  I tightened everything down and was back on my way.  I still had 15 miles to go and was slightly worried about the left shoe only having the one bolt, but there was nothing I could about it at that time.

My equipment malfunction.  If you can’t tell, the top bolt is missing

I ended up making it to Grand Haven without further incident.  Once I got there, I loaded up my bike for the ride home with Jennifer.  As soon as we got home, I dropped off Jennifer and took the car into the repair shop for some scheduled work.  At the shop, I pulled my bike out and biked the 4 miles back home.

As for my shoes, I am hoping to find a replacement bolt at the hardware store so that I don’t have to order a whole new set of cleats.

Stats: 36.19 miles in 1:47:27 (20.2 mph)

Permanent link to this article: http://www.ironmanbythirty.com/2009/10/29/foot-loose


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  1. Jon

    Woah, scary! Nice save!

  2. Joy

    Geez you’re fast! I’m looking at your bike & swim times from your last 2 posts – wow.

    Glad you didn’t tip over 🙂

  3. carol

    Glad you didn’t tip over. I have trouble clipping out on my left side, too. I sometimes wonder if I should alternate just so I get used to it.

    I lost a bolt once too. I think I went to the bike shop and the guy just gave me one. Anyhoo, That taught me to save at least one set of extra washers/bolts whenever I change out my cleats.

  4. Tricia

    dude, the sucks. and yes, nice save. I def would have bit it !

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