Learn your bike
Let's make sure your bike fits your body.
• Seat/saddle height: When you're pedaling, your leg should be almost straight when it's fully extended. There should only be a slight bend in your knee. Keep raising or lowering the seat until it feels right.
• Pedals: If you're on platform pedals, let your foot fall naturally on the pedal. It's okay to use the ball of your foot or your arch, your foot will let you know how it feels. And this is where each person's seat height might differ—if you pedal with the ball of your foot, you may need to go a few milimeters higher on your saddle. Just ride around and feel it out!
• Brakes: You may have discs or calipers brakes on your bike. Make sure you can comfortably reach the levers for them, and get used to using them in these San Francisco hills.
• How shifting works: Each bike is a little different. And here's a tip that people may not mention—shifting is personal preference. You'll get more efficient and stronger over time, so just make sure you feel how each shift affects your resistance, and you'll get used to what feels best.
• And of course, make sure you're comfortable! Go for a ride to make sure everything feels good and to get to know your bike.