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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-17-2008, 10:10 PM Thread Starter
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Bike riders... I have questions

I'll break it up into a few questions...


Gearing:
Is there a "recommended" pedal RPM you should try to maintain or is it preference? When riding I notice that the 01WC types always seem to be in a lower gear maintaining a higher pedal RPM than me. I seem to stay in a bit higher gear and rely more on leg strength than leg speed.
Is one way better than the other? Or am I just not conditioned?


Handlebars:
When I ride for any sort of distance my hands will start to go numb. I have a hybrid, so I have flat mountain bike style handlebars with bar ends on them. The bar ends are ~35 degrees. It seems like no matter how I position my hands I always have problems and can't stay comfortable.
Would flattening out the bar ends so they point straight forward, or moving them to some other position, help a bit with this?


Again, maybe I just need more seat time, but it seems that I can't stay comfortable. Usually halfway through my rides I get, for lack of a better term, restless. Between the hand issue and an aching back (bad posture) I feel like I shift around alot and its very distracting.
Toughen up and get used to it?


And just out of curiosity what kind of speeds do you guys average? I'm not out to set any sort of records but I figured average speed would be a good benchmark to monitor my progress. My ride today was 19.7 miles with an average speed of 13.7 mph. It was closer to 14.7 until I started the leisurely cruise uphill back home.


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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-17-2008, 10:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strychnine
I'll break it up into a few questions...


Gearing:
Is there a "recommended" pedal RPM you should try to maintain or is it preference? When riding I notice that the 01WC types always seem to be in a lower gear maintaining a higher pedal RPM than me. I seem to stay in a bit higher gear and rely more on leg strength than leg speed.
Is one way better than the other? Or am I just not conditioned?


Handlebars:
When I ride for any sort of distance my hands will start to go numb. I have a hybrid, so I have flat mountain bike style handlebars with bar ends on them. The bar ends are ~35 degrees. It seems like no matter how I position my hands I always have problems and can't stay comfortable.
Would flattening out the bar ends so they point straight forward, or moving them to some other position, help a bit with this?


Again, maybe I just need more seat time, but it seems that I can't stay comfortable. Usually halfway through my rides I get, for lack of a better term, restless. Between the hand issue and an aching back (bad posture) I feel like I shift around alot and its very distracting.
Toughen up and get used to it?


And just out of curiosity what kind of speeds do you guys average? I'm not out to set any sort of records but I figured average speed would be a good benchmark to monitor my progress. My ride today was 19.7 miles with an average speed of 13.7 mph. It was closer to 14.7 until I started the leisurely cruise uphill back home.

You want to be high in the cadence. I stick to around 100-110. But try and stay above 80.

Are you wearing gloves? My hands used to get numb but after tons of riding it does not happen anymore.

Short rides I try to keep around 20 MPH, longer rides im happy with anything above 17. This is on flat stuff, for the most part.
If you want to get serious about riding, I would look into a rode bike, I think most of your problems would be cured by that.

If you ever want to go ride, I can try to help you out of some stuff, im no expert and still pretty new to it, but I know a few things. Im out at River legacy at least 3 times a week.

02-z28

Last edited by Ronin6135; 05-17-2008 at 10:27 PM.
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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-17-2008, 10:36 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronin6135
You want to be high in the cadence. I stick to around 100-110. But try and stay above 80.

Are you wearing gloves? My hands used to get numb but after tons of riding it does not happen anymore.

Short rides I try to keep around 20 MPH, longer rides im happy with anything above 17. This is on flat stuff, for the most part.
If you want to get serious about riding, I would look into a rode bike, I think most of your problems would be cured by that.

If you ever want to go ride, I can try to help you out of some stuff, im no expert and still pretty new to it, but I know a few things. Im out at River legacy at least 3 times a week.
I don't wear gloves. Do you think it would be of any benefit?
I'll up the rpm tomorrow morning and see how it works out.

I ride at River Legacy also. I might take you up on that after my cardio conditioning gets a little better. I would be an anchor on you right now.


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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-18-2008, 08:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronin6135
If you want to get serious about riding, I would look into a rode bike...
Yeah used bikes are better if you're serious.
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-18-2008, 09:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanB
Yeah used bikes are better if you're serious.
HAHA, guess I missed that one. ROAD, is that better.

02-z28
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-18-2008, 09:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strychnine
I don't wear gloves. Do you think it would be of any benefit?
I'll up the rpm tomorrow morning and see how it works out.

I ride at River Legacy also. I might take you up on that after my cardio conditioning gets a little better. I would be an anchor on you right now.
I personally don't wear gloves on my road bike, but thats just me, mainly because in Tri's I don't have time to worry about putting them on. I do wear them when Mountain biking though, and it seems to help.

02-z28
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-19-2008, 01:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strychnine
I'll break it up into a few questions...


Gearing:
Is there a "recommended" pedal RPM you should try to maintain or is it preference? When riding I notice that the 01WC types always seem to be in a lower gear maintaining a higher pedal RPM than me. I seem to stay in a bit higher gear and rely more on leg strength than leg speed.
Is one way better than the other? Or am I just not conditioned?


Handlebars:
When I ride for any sort of distance my hands will start to go numb. I have a hybrid, so I have flat mountain bike style handlebars with bar ends on them. The bar ends are ~35 degrees. It seems like no matter how I position my hands I always have problems and can't stay comfortable.
Would flattening out the bar ends so they point straight forward, or moving them to some other position, help a bit with this?


Again, maybe I just need more seat time, but it seems that I can't stay comfortable. Usually halfway through my rides I get, for lack of a better term, restless. Between the hand issue and an aching back (bad posture) I feel like I shift around alot and its very distracting.
Toughen up and get used to it?


And just out of curiosity what kind of speeds do you guys average? I'm not out to set any sort of records but I figured average speed would be a good benchmark to monitor my progress. My ride today was 19.7 miles with an average speed of 13.7 mph. It was closer to 14.7 until I started the leisurely cruise uphill back home.
As far as cadence goes I would say it's really what's comfortable for you, you'll know if you're working too hard when you don't need to be because you'll tire out quickly. If I'm riding on a flat road then I'll have a lower cadence and be in a higher gear (or do I have that backwards) and if I'm riding up an incline I'll have a lower gear for a higher cadence.

For the handle bars that can be several things that can be causing your hands to go numb. Wearing gloves with some padding certainly helped me out when I was having problems with my hands going numb. One of the other things that helped me out was hand placement on the bars, depending on the sort of bike you're riding it can have a huge difference. For me the most comfortable position was with my handle around the shift levers, then the handle bars, then the drop bars.
Here's a diagram to show you what i mean.


If you haven't done it already then you should take your bike to a bike shop (I'd suggest Richardson Bike Mart) and get fitted to you properly. They'll put you up on your bike and have you start peddeling and make adjustments based on what they see. They can adjust the seat height, bar height and such to give you a more comfortable fit. I'd say this is vital to spending longer amounts of time on a bike.

Whenever I had my road bike I tried to keep my average speed at 19mph+ on a normal ride to keep the heart rate up. But then again it's all going to depend on the route in which you ride. If you have alot of flat then you'll probably expect higher, if you've got alot of hills then you'll expect to have a lower mph. If you want some good practice for stamina then go ride the 3 sisters in McKinney, it's a heck of a work out.

Over five thousand years ago, Moses said to the children of Israel, "Pick up your shovel, mount your asses and camels, and I will lead you to the Promised Land." Nearly 75 years ago, Roosevelt said,"Lay down your shovels, sit on your asses, and light up a camel, this is the Promised Land." Now Obama has stolen your shovel..., taxed your asses, raised the price of camels and mortgaged the Promised Land!

Last edited by MotoMan; 05-19-2008 at 04:02 PM.
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-19-2008, 02:15 PM
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Gloves definitely will help with your hands. I had the same problem before I started wearing them.

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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-19-2008, 09:09 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MotoMan
As far as cadence goes I would say it's really what's comfortable for you, you'll know if you're working too hard when you don't need to be because you'll tire out quickly. If I'm riding on a flat road then I'll have a lower cadence and be in a higher gear (or do I have that backwards) and if I'm riding up an incline I'll have a lower gear for a higher cadence.

For the handle bars that can be several things that can be causing your hands to go numb. Wearing gloves with some padding certainly helped me out when I was having problems with my hands going numb. One of the other things that helped me out was hand placement on the bars, depending on the sort of bike you're riding it can have a huge difference. For me the most comfortable position was with my handle around the shift levers, then the handle bars, then the drop bars.
Here's a diagram to show you what i mean.


If you haven't done it already then you should take your bike to a bike shop (I'd suggest Richardson Bike Mart) and get fitted to you properly. They'll put you up on your bike and have you start peddeling and make adjustments based on what they see. They can adjust the seat height, bar height and such to give you a more comfortable fit. I'd say this is vital to spending longer amounts of time on a bike.

Whenever I had my road bike I tried to keep my average speed at 19mph+ on a normal ride to keep the heart rate up. But then again it's all going to depend on the route in which you ride. If you have alot of flat then you'll probably expect higher, if you've got alot of hills then you'll expect to have a lower mph. If you want some good practice for stamina then go ride the 3 sisters in McKinney, it's a heck of a work out.
When I got the bike they fitted it for me. Seat position and bars.

I've started to wish I had road bike style bars. I went with the hybrid b/c at the time it seemed that I was down in Austin almost every weekend riding the hardpacked dirt trails at Town Lake and stuff... but it's been all concrete for months and will probably stay that way. I was told it was probably more trouble than it was worth to swap bars to a roadbike style setup.

This is what i'm riding (Gary Fisher Wingra). I have mountain bike style bar ends also.



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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-20-2008, 04:37 PM
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Higher cadence is typically more efficient than the reverse scenario.

I typically target 90-95 on my cadence with 100/110 if I'm time trialling.

While you can increase your cadence through training it really comes down to physiology and biomechanics. Some people just can't pedal comfortably at 100 RPM regardless of training (lots of different reasons... for example the ratio of slow twitch vs. fast twitch.)

I'd start with getting a minimum of 80 and a max of 100. Somewhere in the range will be your "perfect cadence." Anything under 80 is just flat out inefficient.

People tend to be slower when starting out and think pushing a larger gear is wear it is at. I have a friend that started out like that. Sucker was breaking chains on easy courses like Rowlett Creek on the north side trying to jam the largest gear. I started training him to work on a higher pedal cadence and within 3 months he was clearing the 13 loops at RCP in under an hour which is decent.

Lots of good info on the web.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&s...ce&btnG=Search

As far as speeds go it depends on the day. On my "recovery days" I'm in the 17-18 MPH range, on my 20 mile "time trials" I'll average 24-25MPH (fairly flat course) and on my long lazy days (100 miles) in the 18-19MPH range. But speed is all relative and there are alot of other factors as well. My MTB is 22 lbs, my road bike is 18 pounds and my tri bike weighs in at just a hair over 17 pounds. OBV, I'm faster on the tri bike.

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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-20-2008, 05:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 01WhiteCobra
But speed is all relative and there are alot of other factors as well. My MTB is 22 lbs, my road bike is 18 pounds and my tri bike weighs in at just a hair over 17 pounds. OBV, I'm faster on the tri bike.
Speaking of variance, when's the next poker game?
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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-21-2008, 07:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 01WhiteCobra
Higher cadence is typically more efficient than the reverse scenario.
That's good to know. I always just thought I was being lazy because it's easier to pedal.

I normally stay in the 90-100 range.

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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-21-2008, 03:54 PM
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Speaking of variance, when's the next poker game?
Had two greats ones in the past month. One out in the country in a barn. One of the people in our caravan was threatened with his life at the table. No more country barn poker games for me!

Second one was with a bunch of police officers. Interesting to say the least.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck
That's good to know. I always just thought I was being lazy because it's easier to pedal.

I normally stay in the 90-100 range.
LOL. Now... get that speed up!

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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-07-2008, 03:43 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronin6135
If you want to get serious about riding, I would look into a rode bike, I think most of your problems would be cured by that.
I stepped up and got a real bike (soooo much better) and then had one of those epiphanal (word?) moments.

I've never done any sort of endurance sport, just baseball, softball, racquetball, etc and lifting. Normally my riding consists of some laps at the local park after I get back from the gym (~15 miles), but while on a recent ride I decided to see what I could really do. I hit my normal 15 mile point where I usually head home and felt great so I kept going... I ended up doing 30.4 miles and really only quit because I ran out of water. My cadence and speed could use some help, but it was definitely a mental accomplishment to double up like that, especially with the temp varying between 98* - 102* the whole time.

So the next day I decided to give it another go. I wasn't watching the odometer and was concentrating purely on cadence (trying for 85-95). When I checked the odo. at my front door it read 28.4 miles. I just ran out of gas on this one and my hips started to cramp


I think I've been bitten. This is totally new to me. I've always wished I could be a runner or do some other sort of endurance sport, but I've never stuck it out. I could never get through the wall and the pain made me stop but the biking pain is a "good" one and not the horrible "I'm going to die" that I get when running and I have definitely broken down that first mental wall. It's also easier on my knee


Anyway, just thought I'd share... I've been doing a lot of reading the past few days on general training, hydration, energy gels/bars, etc but I'll probaby be bugging a few of you in the future with some noob questions. For now, this is the plan, unless anyone has a better idea.

From Ronin's progress thread:
Quote:
Originally Posted by 01WhiteCobra
As far as getting faster on the bike, if I were you, I'd concentrate on building the base. You need hours on the bike which build endurance and stamina before you get to speed workouts. When I plan out a year of training I spend at least 12 weeks moving slow and building hours on the bike. If you are just starting out on the bike spend a year worried about being able to ride for 6 hours without much problem. Next year you can start inserting intervals into your schedule to get you riding HHH in under 5 hours
What are reasonable goals for a rookie to be setting? Would the 2009 HH100 (at least the 100k) be out of the question?


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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-07-2008, 04:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strychnine
I stepped up and got a real bike (soooo much better) and then had one of those epiphanal (word?) moments.

I've never done any sort of endurance sport, just baseball, softball, racquetball, etc and lifting. Normally my riding consists of some laps at the local park after I get back from the gym (~15 miles), but while on a recent ride I decided to see what I could really do. I hit my normal 15 mile point where I usually head home and felt great so I kept going... I ended up doing 30.4 miles and really only quit because I ran out of water. My cadence and speed could use some help, but it was definitely a mental accomplishment to double up like that, especially with the temp varying between 98* - 102* the whole time.

So the next day I decided to give it another go. I wasn't watching the odometer and was concentrating purely on cadence (trying for 85-95). When I checked the odo. at my front door it read 28.4 miles. I just ran out of gas on this one and my hips started to cramp


I think I've been bitten. This is totally new to me. I've always wished I could be a runner or do some other sort of endurance sport, but I've never stuck it out. I could never get through the wall and the pain made me stop but the biking pain is a "good" one and not the horrible "I'm going to die" that I get when running and I have definitely broken down that first mental wall. It's also easier on my knee


Anyway, just thought I'd share... I've been doing a lot of reading the past few days on general training, hydration, energy gels/bars, etc but I'll probaby be bugging a few of you in the future with some noob questions. For now, this is the plan, unless anyone has a better idea.

From Ronin's progress thread:


What are reasonable goals for a rookie to be setting? Would the 2009 HH100 (at least the 100k) be out of the question?

What bike did you pick up? I'd say starting off it might be a little much for someone just starting off... but then again you have to start somewhere. You'll definitely have to train for it though.

Over five thousand years ago, Moses said to the children of Israel, "Pick up your shovel, mount your asses and camels, and I will lead you to the Promised Land." Nearly 75 years ago, Roosevelt said,"Lay down your shovels, sit on your asses, and light up a camel, this is the Promised Land." Now Obama has stolen your shovel..., taxed your asses, raised the price of camels and mortgaged the Promised Land!
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post #16 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-07-2008, 06:48 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MotoMan
I'd say starting off it might be a little much for someone just starting off... but then again you have to start somewhere. You'll definitely have to train for it though.
See, this is the kind of reality check I need

OK, I'll start with basics... When planning rides, what do I need to keep in mind or try to do? 2, 3, 4, rides/week? Short/medium/long, short/short/long, etc? Bust my ass vs. take it easy?
I am a blank canvas... someone teach me




I ended up with a Specialized Allez triple.


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post #17 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-07-2008, 07:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strychnine
I stepped up and got a real bike (soooo much better) and then had one of those epiphanal (word?) moments.

I've never done any sort of endurance sport, just baseball, softball, racquetball, etc and lifting. Normally my riding consists of some laps at the local park after I get back from the gym (~15 miles), but while on a recent ride I decided to see what I could really do. I hit my normal 15 mile point where I usually head home and felt great so I kept going... I ended up doing 30.4 miles and really only quit because I ran out of water. My cadence and speed could use some help, but it was definitely a mental accomplishment to double up like that, especially with the temp varying between 98* - 102* the whole time.

So the next day I decided to give it another go. I wasn't watching the odometer and was concentrating purely on cadence (trying for 85-95). When I checked the odo. at my front door it read 28.4 miles. I just ran out of gas on this one and my hips started to cramp


I think I've been bitten. This is totally new to me. I've always wished I could be a runner or do some other sort of endurance sport, but I've never stuck it out. I could never get through the wall and the pain made me stop but the biking pain is a "good" one and not the horrible "I'm going to die" that I get when running and I have definitely broken down that first mental wall. It's also easier on my knee


Anyway, just thought I'd share... I've been doing a lot of reading the past few days on general training, hydration, energy gels/bars, etc but I'll probaby be bugging a few of you in the future with some noob questions. For now, this is the plan, unless anyone has a better idea.

From Ronin's progress thread:


What are reasonable goals for a rookie to be setting? Would the 2009 HH100 (at least the 100k) be out of the question?

100K is very possible, the HH course its self is very easy, only a few hills. Hell in a year you could get in shape enough to do the 100 mile. Looks like ill be there going for the 100 mile this year. Best of luck with the new bike.

02-z28
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post #18 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-07-2008, 07:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strychnine
See, this is the kind of reality check I need

OK, I'll start with basics... When planning rides, what do I need to keep in mind or try to do? 2, 3, 4, rides/week? Short/medium/long, short/short/long, etc? Bust my ass vs. take it easy?
I am a blank canvas... someone teach me




I ended up with a Specialized Allez triple.

Pick up the Triathletes Training Bible, some of the best info you could ever get on endurance sports, it also has some great work out tips. (Before you know it you will be on here asking about triathlons.)

02-z28
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