Closeup: bike computer showing 6,666.6 mi on the odo

Tender Nethers

Published 2007-09-11

So the major point of friction, no pun intended, on my recent epic rides (91 miles this past Sunday) is a certain lack of rock hardness vis a vis my keister. Five or six years of serious long-mileage riding, pre-China, had toughened my backend to a pretty remarkable degree. I have a nearly-no-padding saddle with a hole cut out of the middle for the sake of my prostate. (I am of the opinion that wide, well-padded saddles are, in the long run, counter-productive, because you lose a lot of energy into the padding, which simultaneously constricts the blood flow in parts of your body that have good use for plenty of fresh, hot blood.)

Fourteen months ago, spending 6 or 7 hours perched on this slender little piece of hard plastic caused no particular discomfort. But the last year in China really allowed my nethers to, ahem, relax. So getting back on this saddle, for the last 2 months, has been the tricky part of making long rides.

Actually, the problem isn’t so much getting on the saddle, as it is staying on the saddle somewhere around hour three.

Which isn’t nearly as bad as getting back on that saddle the next day.

Anyway, on this weekend’s epic I had the usual 3-hour-mark suffering, but yesterday I crawled back on the bike for my morning commute and hey presto no pain.

Well, not too much, anyway.