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MISSG180's Photo MISSG180 SparkPoints: (110,394)
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10/1/12 10:56 A

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Definitely taking a more casual attitude toward the destination makes the ride more enjoyable, though if I'm trying to get someplace in order to get something done, I tend to get impatient!

Miss G


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9/30/12 6:41 P

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HAPPENINGFISH, that is some great advice. I went for a ride yesterday with a general direction in mind and had all day to do it if I wanted. By not worrying about the time and distance I managed to actually enjoy the entire ride. I actually got farther than I thought I would.

1st goal 255# MET 2/20/12 (Update: Met this goal but now have gained the weight back so it is now a goal once again)
2nd goal 205#
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"Gonna be that skinny chick at the gym running on the treadmill!"


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HAPPENINGFISH's Photo HAPPENINGFISH SparkPoints: (13,420)
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9/28/12 3:33 P

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Oh I could also mention as regards speed - I'm fairly fast for a tourer, but I'm nowhere near a racer.

The best thing I learned on the tour is that "you'll get there eventually." It made me a less aggressive cyclist. I ate some humble pie and walked my bike up many hills (although curiously, fewer hills as the tour went on). So for a long ride you could think of "budgeting" the amount of time you think the ride will take you, and then double it. And then don't worry about how long it takes you; you'll get there in the end and it's such a great feeling!

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9/28/12 3:29 P

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I'm new here but imma step in right away. :)

I live in Helsinki, and I've noticed that if I want to do a short ride, the city is great, but I am miserable trying to do longer rides because I'm constantly navigating streets and bike routes and stuff. What I found was that I have to take the shortest route out to where I won't have to do very much navigating - i.e. straight roads, small highways, etc - in order to really hit a road cycling stride. So you could look for some bike-friendly roads near where you live. It makes a huge difference to me if I'm stopping all the time for traffic, or if I can just go.

I second the unicorn skin butt stuff! I use Udderly Smooth and it changed my life. My first long cycling trip was about 1200 km all told over 20 days, and after 1200 km all I wanted to do was another 1200. Seriously, I was that happy. But the first couple of days were just excruciating until I discovered what chammy cream is for. Use it often, and enjoy the feeling of cold squidgy when you pull the shorts up. :)

Also, the clip pedals make a HUGE difference. I would never do a long ride without them. I got the kind that have the clip on one side, and regular pedals on the other, so I can use them with or without SPD shoes. It was scary at first, and I nearly did keel over at the first stoplight when I forgot that my feet were attached to the pedals, but I promise you the learning curve is very fast for those. The advantage of being able to get power out of your leg's upstroke as well as downstroke is very large. Cycling without them feels like a lot of work.

Oh, and I ride a wee touring bike. It was fairly cheap, it did the job, I love it to bits and it has a name (of course). You definitely don't need a road bike for longer rides, but it helps. The longest day on my tourer was about 90 miles, but when I don't put a couple of days aside for a real "tour", I find it a real struggle to get myself organized for even a 20-mile ride. So I could also benefit from my own advice here. :)

MISSG180's Photo MISSG180 SparkPoints: (110,394)
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9/28/12 12:36 P

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5000 miles is a lot of miles on a bike, Lisa! I'm still striving to get to 2000 for the season--270 left to go!

Whenever we go to the bike shop, daughter and I drool over the lightweight Raleigh carbon fiber road bikes, but as a practical matter I really do need my sturdy Giant with its panniers and ability to carry all my stuff. Tonight we are riding 40 miles, half of that back from a farmer's market, during which I am certain that we will be weighed down with produce. That's not happening on a quick, lightweight racing bike!

Miss G


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LISALALA1's Photo LISALALA1 SparkPoints: (46,845)
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9/28/12 8:51 A

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DATMAMA4 you got excellent advice I have to say that I'm impressed because I believe most bike shops "over sell" more bike than you need. Basically all frames are made in the same factory...IMHO the bike components are the first thing you should consider. I did a lot of research before purchasing my Motobecane finding this info very informative http://www.intownbicycles.com/how-to/artic
les/index.php?a=how-to-choose-a-road-bike

Here is a link to my bike... http://motobecane.com/alplus/spr.html I've rode over 5000 miles on it so far. I've had to replace the cranks and chain thats normal for as many miles as I've put on it. You basically buy a more expensive higher end bike based on how you will ride it. Hope this helps

Edited by: LISALALA1 at: 9/28/2012 (08:55)
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TRAVLNWOMAN's Photo TRAVLNWOMAN SparkPoints: (19,948)
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9/28/12 7:19 A

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Thanks for that information on how you chose your bike. I think I need to expand my horizon and get out of the TREK brand. While it is a great brand but I've been hearing of so many different brands that are good since I've been on this forum. I think I will check out other bike shops too beyond the local one just to do some window shopping.

1st goal 255# MET 2/20/12 (Update: Met this goal but now have gained the weight back so it is now a goal once again)
2nd goal 205#
3rd goal 155#

"Gonna be that skinny chick at the gym running on the treadmill!"


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DATMAMA4's Photo DATMAMA4 SparkPoints: (29,534)
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9/28/12 12:32 A

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TRAVLNWOMAN, I got a Jamis Coda Sport road bike. I have a photo of it on my Spark Page in my blog "Newbikenewbikenewbikenewbike" (yes, I was that excited to have a new bike!).

Honestly, I am clueless, too. I could not tell you any brand names of good bikes, or even what makes one better than another, other than what metal the frame is made from or tire type. My hubby and I had Diamondback mountain bikes forever, and his 30-year-old Diamondback had been sort of adapted for road use by putting on tires that were more road-appropriate. This is what I rode all summer (you can see a photo of it in my blog titled, "An Honorable Death"), and it was heavy, hard to pedal, etc. etc. It helped me lose weight, though, so I can't knock it...I have a soft spot for the old thing.

When it came time to look for a new bike, I went to a local bike shop, dealt with the initial sticker shock (I thought my mountain bike was expensive 20 years ago when I paid $200!), and then picked the bike guys' brains for awhile. They asked me how often I rode, how far I rode, where I rode, why I rode, and how fast I went (thanks to the "map your route" feature here on SP, I knew my average speed). They showed me a few different bikes and had me take test rides to compare. It basically came down to two bikes -- one that was $800 and one that was $600 -- and the shop owner said I had to decide if the $600 bike actually felt like it was $200 less of a ride than the more expensive bike. Of course it didn't. It might have, to someone with more experience or someone who did bike races, or whatever, but for me, going from what I had to a new, light, fast, all-the-gears-work road model was enough of an improvement for me that I bought the less expensive one.

I am VERY happy with it and the ease of riding is helping me to tackle hills I'd never wanted to even attempt with the old bike.

There were some really cool bikes at the shop that were in the thousandS of dollars (like $3,000 - 5,000) and I imagine the difference between those and the one I bought is probably similar to the difference between my old bike and my new one, but I just don't have a need (or the money!) for anything that advanced. Not now, certainly, and probably not ever, but they were still pretty neat to look at. I was afraid to touch them for fear of knocking them over, though, lol.

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9/27/12 8:23 P

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"That stuff is made of ground unicorn horn and powdered angel wings, I swear!"
LOL, MissG, that is too funny!


DATMAMA4, What kind of road bike did you get? Did you try out many before deciding? I'm pretty sure I'm going to get a road bike next spring. I haven't got a clue how to decide on what kind. I figure I will just test ride a bunch until I find one that works for me.

1st goal 255# MET 2/20/12 (Update: Met this goal but now have gained the weight back so it is now a goal once again)
2nd goal 205#
3rd goal 155#

"Gonna be that skinny chick at the gym running on the treadmill!"


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MISSG180's Photo MISSG180 SparkPoints: (110,394)
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9/27/12 10:49 A

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Bike shorts definitely help, as does a good bike. The other thing I would recommend is a skin lubricant like Chamois Butt'r or HooHa Ride Glide. That stuff is made of ground unicorn horn and powdered angel wings, I swear!

Edited by: MISSG180 at: 9/27/2012 (10:50)
Miss G


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9/26/12 10:08 P

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I used our old mountain bike for road riding almost all summer because I didn't want to invest in a new bike until I knew whether I was serious or not about riding regularly.

When my hubby insisted on treating me to a new bike at the end of August, I couldn't believe the difference it made to have a road bike! I wrote a blog about it on my Spark Page, if any of you want to read it. The difference was truly remarkable.

With my old bike, I hit a plateau of how far I could go, based on how much ripped skin I had on my...um, tender spots...as I rode. Getting padded bike shorts instantly allowed me to double the distance I had been riding -- endurance was not the issue at that point; just skin integrity.

Then my distance began to be limited by how tired I would get, simply trying to get my gears to shift (I popped my chain an average of twice per ride, almost every ride). Getting a new bike has increased my speed and distance because I'm finally comfortable!

I hope to make longer rides a regular thing, but we're headed into the chilly fall season where I live, and I'm not sure how many more weeks I'll be able to ride. I'll just keep chugging along and hope I get better and better at it, looking forward to making significant improvements when spring hits next year!

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9/9/12 11:27 P

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I bought the stiff biking shoes that can have clips, and I like them for riding, but I'm not adding clips to them.

Miss G


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SYZYGY922's Photo SYZYGY922 SparkPoints: (32,450)
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9/6/12 12:07 A

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I'm a slowpoke, too, but I see myself getting faster the more I ride.

I'm more concerned about endurance at the moment, but I may eventually want to work on my speed. I do get a little self-conscious when people zip past me.

I don't think I could ever use clips. My ex-roommate had a nasty fall using them. My last bike had pedals with stirrups on them, and even THAT was scary. I would only use the stirrup on one foot because I would fall if I used them on both feet.

Juliana
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"Our bodies are our gardens to which our wills are gardeners."
-- William Shakespeare
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"I never change, I simply become more myself."
-- Joyce Carol Oates
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"Every woman is a rebel."
-- Oscar Wilde



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LISALALA1's Photo LISALALA1 SparkPoints: (46,845)
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9/5/12 6:19 P

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I agree with you both. I have the shoes and the pedals frankly I just don't like them. I've witnessed several friends take nasty falls while using them. I don't really feel any need for clips and yes I get questioned by "serious" cyclist as to why...today I did 47 miles in 3.5 hours. My friend Bobby who is a retired pro agrees with me He uses them but doesn't believe I need or should use them if I dont want to. Keep cycling girls.. emoticon

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9/5/12 6:09 P

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I totally agree with you MissG. Even the thought of having my feet clipped in makes me nervous.

1st goal 255# MET 2/20/12 (Update: Met this goal but now have gained the weight back so it is now a goal once again)
2nd goal 205#
3rd goal 155#

"Gonna be that skinny chick at the gym running on the treadmill!"


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MISSG180's Photo MISSG180 SparkPoints: (110,394)
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9/5/12 2:02 P

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I don't know that I will ever get clips. I'm terrified of falling, and I know three people who've broken arms from falling because of clips.

I'd rather be a little slower than break anything!

Miss G


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9/3/12 8:36 P

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emoticon thats awesome emoticon

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9/3/12 7:33 P

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I've learned a lot from all of your comments! emoticon I've also have been learning a few things while riding on my own:

If I go at my own pace I am happier and can go farther than trying to keep up with someone else.

If I remember to sit all the way back on the soft part of the seat it is easier to pedal allowing me to pace in a higher gear. Plus I get less numb in the girl parts.

If I am enjoying the ride, it doesn't matter how fast or how far I go.

Rides that I used to think were long now feel short, so if i keep on working at it my long rides now will become short rides later.

1st goal 255# MET 2/20/12 (Update: Met this goal but now have gained the weight back so it is now a goal once again)
2nd goal 205#
3rd goal 155#

"Gonna be that skinny chick at the gym running on the treadmill!"


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SKIRNIR's Photo SKIRNIR Posts: 5,199
9/1/12 10:19 P

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I am not serious enough to do what the first website suggests doing. And who has that kind of equipment? Or the desire to put themselves through that, unless they are trying to be competitive? I could see doing some kinds of interval training though on a bike, as I have been doing somewhat intervals with my walking alternating between speed walking and a recovery walk and that helped me increase my 10K speed a lot. Don't belong to a gym, but could do more squats and calf raises, etc., but I find strength training so utterly boring. I need pushes in that department. Interesting on the pedaling comments, may give that some thought, but I don't have clips as of yet and haven't decided if I am serious enough to invest in any.

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 around 3 hours and 4 minutes
4/19/14 Butterflies for Hope 5K for Lupus 39:23.8 (I hurt my back a few days before, and though it was my first official 5K with some jogging, my back hurt, so was very slow.)


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KJEANNE's Photo KJEANNE SparkPoints: (39,464)
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9/1/12 9:28 P

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Okay Ladies:
If you want to ride faster you have to work at it. Riding far will not improve your speed. It doesn't matter what type of bike you have or how much you weight. You have to do the work to get faster. Work includes: interval, weight and pedaling workouts:

www.bicycling.com/training-nu
trition/t
raining-fitness/ultimate-inte
rval

bicycling.about.com/od/weight
roomwor
kouts/Weight_Room_Workouts.htm
.
www.ehow.com/way_5300277_road-bike-p

edaling-technique.html


Edited by: KJEANNE at: 9/1/2012 (21:32)
Do not look where you fell, but where you slipped.
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8/26/12 1:40 P

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I have only been biking for a short time. And, I am not stressing about being slower than everyone in the bike group. I know it will take time. I also do a lot of other fitness activities that I enjoy - tennis, swimming, running, crossfit and now cycling. I am very competitive with myself but not others. So, I always want to improve from my last experience. If I always were trying to competitve with others - I would easily get discouraged but I simply am just an avg joe that is average in about everything I do emoticon

Holly/Texas. Time Zone: CST; Don't do anything today you can't maintain for the rest of your life; Studies show a mere 11 minutes of weight training 3 times a week is enough to reduce your body fat and raise your metabolism.


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MISSG180's Photo MISSG180 SparkPoints: (110,394)
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8/20/12 8:59 P

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Remember that the focus doesn't always have to be long rides. An hour of riding is a wonderful thing, and it's easy to lose perspective on that when there is so much emphasis on long rides. 800 miles is awesome.

Miss G


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SKIRNIR's Photo SKIRNIR Posts: 5,199
8/20/12 8:43 P

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Just joined the group and I have also have to say I am jealous of those who can do real long distances on their bike. This summer, I have extended my range from somewhere around 15 or 20 miles, to I did a 40 mile ride on Friday. But I feel like I have reached my limit. I had so much thigh pain while riding after about 26 miles, that I wasn't sure I would make it home. (I have in the past done more than 26 miles and not had thigh pain, but have had it some after I finish riding often times, but not always.)

I also have a hybrid comfort series bike. I do find it much more comfortable than my old sporting good special bike was and I can go much further with it too. But I do wonder how much difference in distance the bike makes. One person claimed that 30 miles on my hybrid was like 60 miles on his road bike. (I think he said double anyway.) Seems on the bike trail around here, sometimes I feel intimidated by the speedy road bikers with all their biking gear, etc.

I have no gear. I have a decent bike and helmet and a bike computer for tracking mileage and lights for some night biking. (Oh, I have put 800 miles on my bike so far, since I bought it in December of last year.)


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 around 3 hours and 4 minutes
4/19/14 Butterflies for Hope 5K for Lupus 39:23.8 (I hurt my back a few days before, and though it was my first official 5K with some jogging, my back hurt, so was very slow.)


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SIMPLELIFE4REAL's Photo SIMPLELIFE4REAL SparkPoints: (53,600)
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8/19/12 11:28 A

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I started out with a hybrid bike and used to be jealous of people on road bikes on organized rides because of their speed. Riding a hybrid is more comfortable, but the wider tires create more friction on the road. My hybrid was also pretty heavy. After a couple years of trying to do longer road rides on a hybrid, I bought a road bike and did have an easier time with it in terms of speed and going longer distances. I gave my hybrid away and could kick myself for doing that...there are times when hybrids work better than road bikes.

Now that I'm thinking of doing a cross-country self-supported tour, I'm training on a touring bike which is closer to a hybrid than a road bike. Touring bikes are sturdier and have wider tires....so it's like I'm back to being on a hybrid. My husband hasn't settled on a tour bike yet so when we ride together, I tend to be slower than him, particularly toward the end of a ride (but I sure can do the hills easier with my super-low gearing).

Anyway, I know how you feel. I've been there too. I think it all depends on how you ride and where you want to be riding. When my husband and I ride now, we often end up on hard packed trails where he struggles with his road bike and I happily chug along.

Our biking preferences can change over time. We don't know if we are even going to like riding when we first start doing it so it doesn't make sense to spend a lot on a bike. Speed isn't everything, but it can be frustrating to see people flying by on road bikes. No matter what kind of bike we ride, we are burning calories and getting healthier. To me, that's more important than anything else.

Kay from Tennessee



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8/19/12 11:07 A

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I think you are doing fantastic! When you do a lot of cross-training stuff, your fitness in any one area builds a bit more slowly, but your overall fitness is massively increased. I noticed that now that I've started walking more, my legs are a little less thrilled when I hop on the bike, but building back up.

Part of the speed issue may be your bike. Some bikes are just slower than others. I have a relatively slow bike, and when I bike with the MS150 team, I am among the slowest. I just have to resign myself to that being the case and be me. I don't have $1600 to spend on the polycarbon bike of my dreams!

Miss G


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8/19/12 8:15 A

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As for me I'm lucky that I too don't have a job. I'm a house wife ,my children are grown and I have lots of time on my hands. emoticon I live in Orlando Fl where we don't get much cold weather and there's not a lot of hills...lol Florida has lots of paved bike trails and I happen to live within a mile from one http://www.traillink.com/trail/little-econ
-greenway.aspx it's 16 miles round trip and I do multiple trips... emoticon I also have some really good friends that enjoy cycling as much as I do and we sometimes go off trail and ride with traffic. One of my friends is retired from professional cycling,he rode with the Discovery team and he gives me lots of tips. I started out on a dept store bike and worked my way up to a better pro-level bike here's a link to my bike if you want to check it out...http://www.motobecane.com/alplus/spr
.html

I think your doing great with what you do. I'm sure you'll get stronger and faster the more you ride. I've found that true for myself, 10 miles use to be a struggle and never thought I'd ride 100 miles...I've done that twice now I do ride most days and 40 + miles average. Good luck and keep riding...you'll get better

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8/18/12 11:26 P

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Seems like you're doing great! With all the other stuff you're doing you can count on making progress!

I'm retired so I have the time. I used to sit around a lot but this summer I just decided to be more active. I started riding my bike, first 5-6 miles, then 10-12 miles and now I go about 20 miles. It takes me at least a couple of hours and I go early in the morning before it gets hot. I bike about every other day, then I started kayaking on the alternate days as a way of cross training.

Once I started being more active it became easier to continue. I hurt less and my strength is beginning to build. I have more stamina. My speed is increasing a bit, too.
But at my age I just have to let the faster people be faster! I went out with a group of women to mtn bike last week and didn't even make it through the warm up, had to turn back because I got so winded on the hills.

Trek is a great bike. Now I ride a Specialized comfort bike but may get a Trek next.

I was feeling frustrated too about not seeing my speed increase so I began reading the Team Estrogen message board and getting ideas and encouragement. It's a great group, with many different topics. I picked up quite a few tips, and lots of inspiration.
Shelley





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8/18/12 10:59 P

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I'm so jealous when I see some of you almost daily going on long rides (greater than 15 or 20 miles). I also get jealous that my son can ride farther and faster than me. I get it in my head that if I had a better bike I could go farther and faster. Then I think that I actually do have a good bike, I mean it is a Trek hybrid so I can't really blame it on that, can I? emoticon

I'm not sure why I am posting this. I guess I'm just frustrated and having a down day. How do you all get faster and farther? Some of you put in a lot of time and days riding. I get out for a ride once or twice a week. I do so many things as far as fitness goes. I work out at the gym, go to Cage Fitness class twice a week, swim, and walk. I guess if I really want to get better at riding I will just have to put in more time.

Sigh,,,
emoticon

1st goal 255# MET 2/20/12 (Update: Met this goal but now have gained the weight back so it is now a goal once again)
2nd goal 205#
3rd goal 155#

"Gonna be that skinny chick at the gym running on the treadmill!"


 current weight: 294.7 
 
295
269.75
244.5
219.25
194
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Bike Your Butt Off Program 7/8/2014 5:25:04 PM

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