Fix It!

If this sounds familiar I’m homaging (blatantly swiping) an old SNL gag from the last (2008) existential crisis America faced. Oscar Rogers (Kenan Thompson) exhorts “them” to:

“Identify the problem. Fix it! identify another problem. Fix it! Repeat as necessary until it’s all fixed!”

Seems like that admonition could easily be applied today, doesn’t it? But I’m hijacking “Fix It” toward another purpose and it’s not “they” who need to fix it. It’s up you and I.

Fix what, exactly? Oscar Rogers would answer "It!"… fix "It!". In my hijack, the thing to fix is what hardware in your sport discommodes you, or, the way you use that hardware (e.g., your bike position).

The last time we polled this, the saddle was your problem. Remained your problem. Twenty-three percent of you said, “I’m good,” to the question, “I'd be happier if I could find a new [blank] that was more comfortable, that fit, or was more ergonomic.” However, 77 percent of you were not good. And in total, 1-in-3 of you said your saddle was the problem.

Ten percent said it was your cycling shoes, then at 8 percent it was your swim goggles, 7 percent aerobars, 6 percent wetsuit, 6 percent run shoes and then it trailed off. We can’t work on the swim right now, but we can sure work on the bike issues.

Now is the perfect time to Fix It. In my experience, stationary is the test lab for positional changes, and equipment experimentation. This is where you fix problems. In fact, this is one reason I’ve been so high on the smart bikes made by Tacx and Wahoo Fitness: the capacity to work on one’s position during stationary rides. Wahoo’s KICKR Bike offers the additional feature of incline, and for the last half-dozen years I’ve been preaching the value of incline during a fit session (all my fit bikes have the capacity for incline, either as a built-in feature, or I build incline tables on which to place my fit bikes).

We’ll eventually have at least 4 threads on our Reader Forum. One is up already, and it’s on saddles. We’ll also have threads on aerobars, pedals, and on your position. Some of you are going to be the helpers, aiding folks with problems. Some of you are coming in with problems, and I’ll ask you to post your questions, or videos (in the case of fit issues), and we’ll go to work fixing these problems.

As regards saddles, here are your current choices (as of a few months ago) in terms of saddle style, along with how your tastes have morphed over time.

From time to time I’ll bring in people from these companies to talk to you in these Reader Forum threads. I’ll ask them for their expertise, and I’ll also do a little arm-twisting, to get them to offer liberal return policies (since we’re using this season as one for experimentation, and we need to allow for failed experiments), and maybe we can wrangle a little discount for Slowtwitchers.