It must have been about 2 1/2 years since I'd last had a bike fit, and to be honest I simply couldn't see the fuss and wasn't willing to spend the money to get a fit. I knew I'd changed weight and shape and size but forking out some hard earned dosh just to move things around a bit, surely it couldn't have that much of an impact.
I'd been getting a bit sore on the bike specifically around the shoulders and having had a series of treatment earlier from our friends at TBI Health I knew I should get looked at. But I didn't. Then I was out enjoying a fantastic ride in the middle of nowhere with Paul Rawlinson when he looked across and told me I needed a bike fit.
I guess I already knew it, but I'm a bit of a cheap bugger so didn't want to. I guess it's not like I really couldn't afford to, more I didn't want to. I'm a pretty adaptable bugger, I'll jump in a car or van or truck and drive it. If I can't reach the pedals I may move the seat forward, but that's about it. I'll jump on a bike and ride it....so long as things are sort of right it should be good enough. I've done Taupo a few times, a couple of 200+km rides, tons of 30km commutes.....surely it must be OK.
Then came the offer from Adam, AKA the Kapiti Bike Whisperer. A reasonable priced bike fitting, made even better through being a member of the Kapiti Cycling Club (membership has its privileges).
so I booked a time in, turned up, and got to admire the muscle car on the wall (GT500 known as Eleanor in gone in sixty seconds I believe), but enough of the car, he popped me on the trainer, mucked around with various settings all the while telling me some stuff but I was too busy looking at the car on the wall.
He moved bits up and down backwards and forwards, made it hard, made it easy, and generally sorted out some stuff finally coming up with a set of measurements he was happy with, along with a recommendation to go from a 110 to a 130mm stem.
I can be totally honest in saying I cared so little about what had been done that I had not actually looked at the measurements he provided with the changes detailed till just before I started writing this piece. It seems my seat went down and backwards a bit, and there was the need for the stem.
So I went away happy that Adam had set the bike up the best he could for me along with letting me know he'd be only too happy to fit the stem for me when I got one. I'm pretty sure he even offered to get one in for me if needed.
I was set. Time to ride.
Off I set with new expectations for feeling great while riding. My first ride out was the slowest, hardest flat ride I had done in a long time, with a heart rate way too high for the work I was doing, and there was no significant wind!
After a trip to the doctor, then another, then off to the hospital, back to the docs, a couple of weeks on antibiotics, and the purchase of a new stem (from Wiggle) I was starting to feel almost human again. So I went back to Adam, promptly blaming him for everything given I'd had no issues prior to the fit, but getting him to fit the stem anyway. :-)
A couple more weeks on antibiotics and things had reached a stage where I could start to exercise again, so after a couple of hard work runs and some swimming I took the chance to set out on the bike.
Well....what can I say. It was a hard ride, due to the lack of my fitness, but after 2 1/2 hours there was no pain, things were feeling great and most importantly the next day there was no pain in my neck or shoulders!
So there you have it.
I'd not told Adam that this pain had pretty much been a problem for most of the last year. It was sort of a rule #5 thing. I knew something was wrong on the bike but didn't know what. It seems this problem is now sorted and I am looking forward to getting back out on my next ride.
The upshot of all this. Well...the bike fit had nothing to do with my sickness (but I'll still blame him), that's something the medical people can sort out. I was very impressed with the way Adam listened to what I was saying despite me just dumbly sitting there drooling over Eleanor. He did all the work and so far it seems has come up with all the right results.
If you're considering a bike fit then I'd highly recommend Adam. If you haven't had one in a while then perhaps it's something you should consider, and if your experiencing pain on the bike and hardening up just isn't cutting it, then get in contact with Adam and let him whisper to your bike in the way he did to mine. The results are worth it!
Oh, and Adam, if you ever happen to get a real GT500 then I want a ride!
The Kapiti Bike Whisperer
Finally, if you're purchasing bits from wiggle.co.uk and aren't sure about the fitting, give Adam a call, he's an official "Service Point" for Wiggle too.