The weather was absolutely gorgeous when I got home from work and I decided to give my darling single speed cruiser Kate a little bit of love. She gets neglected as I choose Lily the hybrid for my commute and Circe the road bike for distance training. Kate is adorable -- there's no denying that -- but I have the tiniest bit of buyer's remorse because she was SUCH an impulse purchase and isn't the most practical bike around.
I cruised up and around the neighborhood, mashing as hard as I could to get up hills and hanging on for dear life while coasting down. I've decided that I really, really don't like coaster brakes because 1) I can't kick the pedals into a good take-off position when I stop, and 2) it's hard to stop quickly without skidding. There are so many downhill sections that end with a stop sign and I'm less than excited about sliding into cross traffic.
That being said, I still enjoyed being out and about on my sweet little bike. We explored some gravel roads along the W&OD and Kate was as sure "footed" on that gravel as a mountain goat in craggy environs. I would have been nervous on Lily and there's no way Circe could have gone through that area. My sturdy Kate surprised the heck out of my by handling the bumps and ruts and loose gravel with ease.
When we got back on the paved trail and I was pedaling with all my might to get uphill, I thought that swapping out the cruiser's pedals for SPDs would help me move the bike more efficiently. And then I realized that I was thinking about a CRUISER. It's practically the antithesis of clipless pedal material!