I love Minneapolis and its enthusiasm for all things outdoor and active. There are so many trails and paths, parks and roads that are perfect for the novice or expert rider. Not to mention, there are great gear shops all over the cities. Great places to find something specialty, custom, pink or just plain unnecessary for your work out adventures.
Now, generally I like to keep this blog a pretty positive place, about all great things Minnesotan. However, I must point out, that with all of its great outdoor spaces and equipment access for the common man (or woman), Minneapolites are frequently Over-Geared and Under-Skilled. We live near West River Parkway ("The River Road") and took a drive along it yesterday on our way back from Midwest Mounaineering (we were shopping for canoe gear). The River Road is amazing, and Calhoun and I often marvel at the fact that so much amazing riverfront property is available to the public and not limited to the super-wealthy. The River Road is a two lane road, flanked by a large bike path, a running path through the median, a sidewalk on the other side and trails down to the river all along the pathway. The paths and roads have been recently updated so it's a great place to ride and it's generally more scenic that running through a neighborhood, not to mention The River Road is similar to Lake Calhoun and is a place to go to see and be seen when working out.
Yesterday on our drive home we spotted a ton of Minneapolis Duathlon jerseys on riders along The River Road. The Duathlon doesn't happen until the end of August, but I guess people are sporting their jerseys and practicing on the route, which is 18 miles of The River Road. So, in addition to all of the see-and-be-seen-ers, there were a lot of people out training for the upcoming race. Kudos to them, I am way to much of a slacker to criticize someone for wanting to get out there and train for physical fitness, good for you!
But, Calhoun works part time at a local cycling gear shop and is a cycling, equipment, running, technique, let-me-calculate-your-gear-ratios guru. And because he sells them, he can spot a bike $3,000 bike from thirty feet away.
So, point of the story. We're driving along The River Road, people are sporting their duathlon jerseys and we ride up behind a trio of people who take their sweet time making a right turn on the same street we're trying to right turn on. When they finally turn, the do a U-Turnto re-evaluate their training route. And some lady, on a $3,000 bike, takes a hard knee into the pavement because she can't get her clips out of her pedal. Over-geared, under-skilled.