1) Ease yourself into using them. It’s going to be weird at first (especially if you aren’t used to them on a road bike either). Until you feel comfortable getting into and out of them, don’t attempt things that would push your abilities too far. That said…
2) Stick with it. There’s a good debate on whether or not clipless are better than flats, but if you do want to go the clipless route, be ready to learn on them. The first few months are probably gonna suck. You’re gonna fall over where you otherwise wouldn’t, you’ll have a difficult time starting up on hills and it can be aggravating. But after a few months of flailing around you get the hang of it and it becomes second nature.
37 miles is a good "learning" ride for the pedals! If the pedals have the option (most do, Crank Brothers doesn’t), loosen your tension up until you get comfortable unclipping. After a bit you can put more tension on if you like. I’ve ridden clipless for years. Once you get used to clipping out, you don’t even realize you are doing it. It’s a bit funny, I decided for a bike park ride that I would put on the flats from my loaner bike. I noticed I unconsciously would do the unclip motion to get off of those!
I especially like the clipless pedals on my road bike. I couldn’t imagine riding that without them.
Obligatory clipless sucks comment here….. 😆 seriously though I have road both still use clipless on the roadbike. If your gonna push it and your not used to them wear some pads cause your gonna crash with feet firmly planted to your pedals. On the plus side climbing is easier.
I was afraid of going clipless, so what i did was put them on my road bike and kept platforms on my mtb. so i rode a ton of miles and got used to clipping in and out, and then switched the clipless pedals to my mtb and put about 200 miles on it to get used to the feel of it. i took my 29er to an mtb park and just went for it clipped in. i got some knee pads and just sucked it up and did it. i only fell once, and that was because i didn’t have enough momentum at the top of a climb. other than that, i did almost seven miles of somewhat technical singletrack and fast berms and small logs, and also some bridges and stuff. in my opinion, being clipped in made my ride much more enjoyable, and made climbing way easier. was a lot of fun, and i am glad that I made the switch.
I went to nashbar to get my pedals, I got the nashbar singletrack pedals, they were only $29, and that site has sales all the time. I got a pair of Pearl Izumi’s on ebay. they were lightly used, but I got them for a steal at only a little over $20. You pedals will come with cleats, so you don’t have to buy them separately.
You can adjust the tension on them the lightest setting, which makes them easier to get in and out of. While I was at the park I ended up having to tighten them up because I was having a difficulty "finding" the pedal upon startup. Once I adjusted it, it was easier to clip in.
It was kinda scary at first, but I got over it right away and it just seemed more natural.
Well I have had my bike for a month and from my perspective I love the spd’s. I have not fallen yet, although I have had a few near misses. I have more power and control except when I am going at lower speeds. I just clip out earlier. I read somewhere that someone said to plan your stops, that has been the most helpful advice. I have pedals that are flat on on side and clipless on the other side. The other day I just took a quick trip without the spd’s after only a month I was very uncomfortable. I think that will be the last time I ride with regular shoes.
I have a nice SPD clips/shoe set. Took them off because I wanted to be better in flats, actually have some skill. The only thing I think the clips have an advantage over flats is getting fancy, with less work. Meaning, obviously, I can clear over an obstacle much easier on clips, than I can on flats. I use Straitlines with 5.10’s and the bite is awesome, wether it is wet, dry, muddy, etc.
However, I was thinking of going back to my clips for a bit to see how much more air and things I can pull with them as opposed to without them. One thing though, pedaling out of the saddle with clips, does NOT feel right at all, made my knee feel funny, any suggestions?
Lastly, if I do go to clips, then I’ll only be going back to flats in the winter lol. I ride with boots, lol. Clips are nice and I like them, just always been more of a flat guy. BUT, you don’t have to worry about cut up shins either lol. 😆