With the snow viciously melting here in Saskatoon, SK, Canada, and after endless “ryding” at Ryde YXE Cycle Studio, I finally got a chance to hop onto my brand new Schwinn Vantage F1 sport hybrid bike! I felt like I was hang-gliding during the entire ride. The bike is incredibly light and smooth – so much that it doesn’t feel like there is a bike underneath you!
I enjoy cycling for a million and one reasons and mostly because I can get from A to B while also fitting in exercise. Unfortunately, in Saskatoon, cars rule the roads and motorists tend to not be very patient for cyclists – as is the case in many cities. My road rides lately have been rough, given the melting snow and icy patches. Here in Saskatoon we use sand and gravel instead of salt on our roads, so the sand and gravel get pushed to the sides of the roads where cyclists are also pushed to, thus making it pretty rocky, bumpy, and sometimes a little scary!
Usually in starting in March and up until June, Saskatoon goes through a cycle of melting and freezing and snowing and sunshine. The weather pendulum swings so far from one side to the other, that you would think someone teleported you to a different country – sometimes even in the same day! As such, I think I need to invest in some fenders for both the front and back wheel of my Vantage F1 because my washing machine is sure getting a run for its money from all the mud flying up my back!
Even with the days getting longer, I will also need to beef up my new Schwinn with some lights! In Saskatoon it is also mandatory to have a bell or some kind of noise-making device on your bike. I always wonder – can I just kindly ask people to excuse me as I bike past? Ringing a bell as I creep up behind someone always seems a little pushy and I feel like I am implying that I take priority over a pedestrian or another cyclist, but it’s the law!
Once I “beef” up my Vantage F1 with some more of the necessities, I will be able to use it to commute to work! I am currently using my Schwinn for fun and my winterized my other bike for commuting as the snow and ice are still melting. The route from my current residence to work is not very safe or convenient, but this will all drastically change once I move into my new condo on June 1! June will be perfect timing as Summer kicks into full gear in Saskatoon around this time and I will be steps away from our gorgeous Meewasin Trail, which is a shared pedestrian and cyclist path that circles the South Saskatchewan river that flows through our friendly city.
Cheers to more sunshine and warmer weather! I better go stretching my quads and hip-flexors!
My name is Jaris and I am so excited to be an Schwinn Ambassador. I am a Saulteaux First Nations man from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, and a Lecturer in Pharmacy at the College of Pharmacy and Nutrition at the University of Saskatchewan. In my professional world I am a pharmacist, an academic, and a leader in my profession. In my personal life, I am a cyclist, an advocate, a change-maker, and a brand new Spin Instructor at the Schwinn-infused Ryde YXE Cycle Studio in Saskatoon.
As a Schwinn Ambassador I plan to share my “ride” through my personal and professional journey with the online community – whether it be commuting, volunteering, or connecting with my family, friends, and community. I always strive to stay healthy – physically, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally – and cycling helps me achieve and maintain balance.
See more and follow Jaris on Instagram @jaris.swid