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TOPIC:   Breaking the bike out of the garage 


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SKIRNIR
SKIRNIR's Photo Posts: 5,129
8/27/13 8:05 P

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Elven: I know what you mean. I have to say either my butt finally got used to my bike, or the newer bike with a comfort seat helped a lot. But I thought I stopped getting a sore butt before that.

3/31/12 Trailbreaker half marathon 13.1 miles in 3 hours 13 minutes
4/20/13 Neighborhood Watch 5K 39:17.6
10/5/13 5K Grace Pet Fest 38:47.6
12/1/13 Secret City Half Marathon, hopefully in under 3 hours!


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MISSG180
MISSG180's Photo SparkPoints: (96,312)
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8/27/13 3:51 P

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Not all bike shorts, but actual bike shorts are padded.

Miss G


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WIPINGSWEAT
WIPINGSWEAT's Photo Posts: 86
8/27/13 3:34 P

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I had no idea that bike shorts had padding in them! I'll look into some!


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HILLSLUG98239
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8/27/13 11:26 A

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And a lot of folks don't realize this when they first start out: don't wear underwear under the bike shorts. The shorts are there to protect you from chafing, and adding a layer of cloth will make you chafe.

Almost all of my bike shorts are men's. In addition to the generous sizing (meaning BIG), I prefer the longer leg length of men's shorts. I like my shorts to come down to within about 4" of my knee. It keeps my thighs from rubbing together, it helps support more of my leg muscles, and it makes for a much more impressive tan line.

Love God. Love your neighbor. Change the world. It really is that simple.


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MISSG180
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8/27/13 9:03 A

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If you don't have padded bike shorts, you should absolutely get some. I order all my bike clothes from aerotechdesigns.com - I am loyal to my local bike shop for everything but clothes, because they only stock things that are much too wee for my goddess-like posterior. But AeroTech Designs has bike shorts built to embrace the all that is me!

I used to think that things like bike shorts and riding jerseys were kind of an affectation, and now I have and LOVE them. Definitely worth the money.

Edited by: MISSG180 at: 8/27/2013 (09:04)
Miss G


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WIPINGSWEAT
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8/27/13 8:58 A

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I think I'm dying a slow death today. I don't remember ever being this sore in my life! Part of it is the pec deck I used at the gym yesterday and this morning, but my bum hurts so bad from that seat that I can't sit comfortably anywhere! It's going to be a few days before I try that again.


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HILLSLUG98239
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8/26/13 10:02 A

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You deserved those high-fives. You will find people are amazed you ride your bike to work. Who knows - you my even inspire others to try it.

Congratulations!

And don't worry about walking up hills. As long as you're walking, you're still moving forward. And soon enough, you'll ride up those hills on your single-speed bike. And you'll SMILE.

Love God. Love your neighbor. Change the world. It really is that simple.


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MISSG180
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8/26/13 9:29 A

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Great job! It will get simpler and smoother, I promise.

You did way better than I this morning. I got up early with the plan to go the gym, dressed and walked the dog, but then my daughter didn't get up and I was going to go but I sat down to check email and fell back to sleep! Oh, well, will try to get on the bike later today!

Miss G


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WIPINGSWEAT
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8/26/13 9:12 A

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Thank you for the support, everybody! I DID IT! I walked my son to school, then hopped on my bike and rode to work. Altogether, the trek from my house to office is 2.14 miles - not bad. I walked into the office and got high fives and fist pumps and although my face is tomato red and I'm shaky, I FEEL GOOD!

I went to the gym this morning, too, and between both, I am feeling quite accomplished. Yesterday, I was beginning to think the world was consipiring against me. I got my bike down, aired the tires up and rode around the neighborhood a bit with my mini. Then the hubby and I were sitting in the garage last night and the tire suddenly blew! I was so frustrated! But hubby, knowing how important this first ride was to me, got his bike down and did an overhaul on it and I rode it to work. I'm kinda glad - it has gears where mine doesn't. A couple of hills would've been walked, I fear.

Thank you guys for all the support. I'm not terribly active on other SP boards, but I'm looking forward to getting to know all you girls - I feel like you are the incentive I need!


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DERBYMOM165
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8/25/13 11:05 A

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Welcome to Girls Gone Riding!
People stare at cyclists because they wish they were on a bike, or because they think your bike is really cool! I'm a fluffy gal in-progress, and people are amazed when they find out I ride my bicycle every day. Even a little bit every day consistently is very helpful to reaching your goals. It's important to remember you're doing this for YOU, not "them" and to have fun in the process. Keep at it!



GREBJACK
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8/24/13 3:35 P

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You should definitely break that bike out of the garage. Because it's good for you - not only your physical health but your self-image. And because of the model you'll set for your son, again both the model of improving fitness and of social guts. Maybe take a few rides in more secluded places, so you'll already have some confidence the first time you're out among lots of people, and before you have to get to the end of your ride on time!

I find that there were plenty of people in cars willing to judge me harshly, but here's the thing: they're in their cars! I wonder if the nastiness is just jealousy. It's not much different now that my body is shaped more like Madison Avenue's ideal - some people just like to ridicule others. But the other people out running or riding their bikes, I've never found any of them to be anything but encouraging.

I'll tell you what I'm thinking now when I see someone heavy out working out. I know how exhausted I got carrying my 40 pound backpack this summer, and that's what someone 40 pounds heavier than me is doing every day. I can only respect how tough they are.


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EBRAINK
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8/23/13 10:44 P

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YAY, Elvenlady! It's wonderful to commute by bike (or so I think). I've been a (mostly) fair-weather commuter for about 11 years now, and I started on a whim - I hadn't even owned a bike for 20 years. My quick tips on what helps:

* Make sure the bike gets a good tuneup. It's really annoying to be half-way there and have to walk the bike because of an equipment failure.
* Others have mentioned already, but make sure you've got a route that's safe. Plan & test it.
* Then, just try it. Ride your route on a day when you're not working. If you feel comfortable, try it on a workday (allowing plenty of time for error, traffic, changing clothes, whatever).
* I think it's important to have equipment that makes the commute comfortable, too. It took me a while to find the PERFECT pannier bag for my commute, but I have friends who swear by wearing their messenger bags or throwing their purses in the rear basket. Figure out what works for you - there aren't any rules about how to do this. You get to figure it out.
* Figure out what your comfort level is with warm weather, sweat, wardrobe, etc. I keep some "freshening" supplies in the office, and for the really hot days, and I carry a change of clothes. Baby wipes and Febreze are my friends! I'm never as fresh as I'd be if I drive in air-conditioned comfort, but I've learned to be okay with that...
* Set a reasonable goal at first - doing this AT ALL is an achievement, at this point. Doing it a certain number of times per week, or at a certain pace, or by taking a longer route than you need to - you can do those things in the future. But you can only do those in the future if you start.

And finally, about the big butt on cycle phenomenon, honestly, I think anyone who is "active" ignores the size of the butt on the bike, and admires the fact that the butt is on the bike. I have friends who are seriously into cycling (one is training for pro rides - yowza!) Every single person I know has been kind and supportive, willing to offer tips, and accepting of the fact that we're all in different places and all have different needs. It's really been inspiring.

I have a commute that's long enough that I wear cycle clothing and change when I get to the office. For a while, I wore baggy shorts and loose tops - then I got annoyed by all the floppy fabric, and switched to different gear. I made that choice based on what I needed and wanted...not based on what I feared others might think about how I looked.

That's one of my favorite things about having decided to do this commute by bike thing. I don't care about what people think about how I look on my bike.

Go for it!

We succeed when we create conditions for success - and when we can't do that, we create conditions for succeeding within constraints.


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NINJALINDA
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8/23/13 9:21 P

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I've been both the fit, trim person exercising, and the overweight, pudgy person exercising. Right now I'm the pudgy version, and I understand your embarrassment. Let me tell you that when I was the trim person, I applauded the overweight people I saw working out. I wish now that I would cut myself the same slack I cut them.

On another note, I wish I lived closer to my job so I could consider riding my bike in. My commute is about 45 miles one way. If it were 10 miles or less, I would do it for sure! You should try it just one day. I'll bet you no one would look twice at you. And you would feel SO good and SO accomplished! Do it, and let us know how it went, ok?

Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there.
-Will Rogers


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HILLSLUG98239
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8/23/13 7:20 P

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I agree with what other people have already written.

I'm still twenty pounds heavier than I want to be, and about forty pounds heavier than my doctor wants to be. I see people out walking who are really really big. I always make a point to make eye contact and smile. Those people are my heroes! They have taken that first step to make a positive change in their lives. They're taking control. That is amazing.

I read a book by a woman who, at 240 pounds, decided to complete a triathlon. She got fit, but she was still heavy when she did her first triathlon. During the run, she saw one of the teenaged volunteers snicker at her. She confronted him. "Did you just laugh at me?" Seriously, this woman was really suffering, but she had enough energy left in her to defend herself.

I loved that story, but that experience is exceedingly rare. Active people are very supportive of other people being active. While I make it a point to wave or nod at everyone I approach or pass when I'm riding my bike, I know that most people are pretty much in their own heads while they're exercising. They have just enough brain activity devoted to the outside world to see stop signs and oncoming cars, but that's it. So yeah, they probably will not even notice you or how self-conscious you are.

And don't forget: some of those amazingly fit people you see were once really out-of-shape people who decided to get off the couch and take control of their lives.

Wouldn't it be wonderful if you and your son got into a morning routine of both of you riding your bikes to his school, and then you continue to work? Think of the great message you're sending him. And wouldn't it be even more awesome if other parents decided to start riding alongside their kids? (I read a story a while back about a woman who completely transformed her town by doing just that. Their roads were incredibly unsafe for cyclists and pedestrians, so she started riding with her kid to school as an escort. In time, other parents joined with their kids. They ended up with bike caravans escorting kids to school, which forced local officials to address the needs of cyclists and pedestrians.)

Love God. Love your neighbor. Change the world. It really is that simple.


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MISSG180
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8/23/13 5:10 P

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My fat butt sits on that bike seat on a regular basis, and it's okay. I'd recommend practicing the route on the weekend, just so that you're comfortable on the roads. You have absolutely no reason to be embarrassed; 99% of people aren't too busy worrying about their own lives to think about you.

Miss G


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SKIRNIR
SKIRNIR's Photo Posts: 5,129
8/23/13 4:29 P

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You know what, I think most people have the same response I do to those of us who are larger out exercising. A big ole thumbs up. Don't worry about what others think. They are thinking anything as bad as you think they are thinking.

3/31/12 Trailbreaker half marathon 13.1 miles in 3 hours 13 minutes
4/20/13 Neighborhood Watch 5K 39:17.6
10/5/13 5K Grace Pet Fest 38:47.6
12/1/13 Secret City Half Marathon, hopefully in under 3 hours!


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URBU2IFUL
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8/23/13 4:10 P

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I just decided one day to just do it. I just stay off the main city streets---its pretty dangerous where I live. Do you have bike/walk paths where you live? Neighborhood streets are good too if there is little traffic.

Hope that helps. emoticon emoticon

Sandra New Mexico

Remember: You are a beautiful person!


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WIPINGSWEAT
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8/23/13 3:29 P

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I'm nervous and feel very out of place posting here, but I am seriously considering breaking my bike out of the garage and riding to work. I'd like some advice from any of you with experience.

I live in a 'city' of 60,000 people, but luckily I live only 2 miles from work. My routine consists of dropping my son off at school, then driving to work. Home and back for lunch then home at night. My normal route rarely strays farther than the grocery store two blocks from my house.

I want to ride to work, but I keep coming up with excuses. The biggest one, so far, is that I'm just flat out embarrassed. My fat butt is going to the gym everyday, but I don't want to be stared at as I'm riding my granny bike around town.

How did you guys get started? Any advice?


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