We’re gonna play a bit of a ‘what-if’ game today, primarily, because I need some real-world assistance in deciding a conundrum. One of the job benefits for the company I work for is that we get a fitness credit each year that can be used for either a gym membership, or for a new bike.
(Yes, it’s actually that explicit and really says “ or bicycle”. Crazy awesome, I know.)
At present, I have a gym membership to Equinox that’s good for quite a while longer from last year’s partnership with Men’s Health Magazine. And, I still yet have another membership with my local county rec center gym as well, and I have access to a gym at the office, and another one as a city resident. Thus, I have more than enough gym memberships to go around.
What I can never have though is enough bikes to go around. The Rules of cycling (Rule #12) dictate that the appropriate number of bikes is N+1, where N is the current number of bikes. Thus, let’s outline my current bike ownership situation:
A) Primary bike: Triathlon bike (Cervelo P3C)
B) Secondary bike: Road bike (Fuji Roubaix RC Road Bike)
C) Mountain bike: A now rather crusty mountain bike I got as a kid while a paperboy
D) The $99 Wedding bike: Ok, I still haven’t unwrapped it again from our wedding.
(Pics of the various bikes in each of those linked posts)
So looking at the situation, the wedding bike really isn’t functional. It’s more of an arts and crafts project, and not something I need to replace either – one wedding, one bike…no more weddings. The triathlon bike I’m quite happy with, so no need for another triathlon bike.
The mountain bike actually gets more use than the road bike, since I often use the mountain bike to follow around The Girl on a run at night, or do quick errands. I also often use it when photographing at local races/events.
The road bike is ‘fine’, not something I’m in love with, but it works. Plus, for the most part if I’m spending any significant amount of time on a bike, it’s likely gonna be my triathlon TT bike.
The challenge I have is that I think I’m split on the fence between two needs: A replacement mountain bike, and a day to day ‘around town’ bike – which my current mountain bike kinda fulfills today. Perhaps I’m looking for something of a mixed use commuter bike. Then again, perhaps I’m looking for a mountain bike.
So, given the above situation – how would you spend the $800? Mountain, around town, something else?
To clarify some rule details, I can indeed go over $800US, but I’d just have to pay the difference. So, I’m willing to perhaps go a tiny bit over (say, $100-$200), but I don’t want to be defeating the purpose of what is effectively a free bike, with spending another $1,000 that I wasn’t planning on spending (and don’t need to spend). It’s also possible that I may technically be able to buy a used bike, though, I’d need to have a receipt – and in some ways, I don’t want to find out afterwards that a used bike didn’t qualify. A bit of grey area there. If I spend less than $800, then the leftover money just remains there as a gym credit. Note, we won’t include any accessories in here since I have just about everything. And while I could technically buy just a frame, I’d prefer to have it be mostly turnkey. And finally, the rules state I can only buy a single bicycle per year.
Everything make sense? Good.
I’m looking for any and all suggestions – especially ones that involve specific brands/models or other goodness where my decision making is easy.
Thanks for reading, and looking forward to your suggestions!