Pacific Northwest - New (coming back) to riding.
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04-21-09, 01:46 AM
My name is Josh, I live in the south Puget Sound area and I've recently renewed my want for riding. I use to ride all the time when I was in high school and have noticed I've started to gain weight. I can't bring myself to run constantly because I hate running but figured since I use to love riding, why not do that.
I have absolutely no idea where to start. I've started reading the forums but this set of forums is so massive it's going to take me a while so I figured in the mean time I'd make a post just introducing myself and if anyone wanted to give me some feedback or point me in the right direction, then it couldn't hurt.
Just a little info on me as far as biking. Like I said before I use to ride 3-5 hours a day on my mountain bike, doing trails, through schools, neighborhoods etc with a friend of mine. The bike got stored away when I went to college and has pretty much stayed there since. Multi-years later I still have that same bike and have just recently brought it out to repair it and give it a tune-up. The bike is a Trek 6000 with a solid frame.
My long-term goal is to ride a marathon, I want to do it within a year. I want to get back into shape and drop some weight. I figure I can ride every day for an hour or so to start and work my way up to more and more. If I can get myself to keep riding and end up loving it again I'll be searching for a road bike but I can't see myself dropping $1000+ on a bike that I'm not 100% sure I'll be using right now, so the current ride will have to do for the time being.
Thanks for reading for those that did. Any suggestions or thoughts please feel free to lay out any nuggets of information. I know that's a long post and it rambles but it's everything I was thinking at the time.
AND - for the TL:DR - I'm getting back into biking, completely lost as to where to go and what to do. Thoughts, ideas and random information is good. Hi.
04-21-09, 06:24 AM
How far south are you? If you are in the Puyallup area the foothills trail is a good place to start. The interuban from Algona north to Tukwilla or however far you want to go. Other wise just start riding around the neighborhood and see how far you can go to start getting into shape. Can you ride to work? Depending how you feel about riding in traffice thats a good place to start too. Otherwise just get on the bike and go.
04-21-09, 07:17 AM
I'm in the Puyallup area, I'll have to find those trails you're talking about. I can't ride to work... 37 miles each way is a bit much to start. :lol:
Josh, check out the C&V portion and read about some of the older road bikes that can be very reliable. I've never dropped $1000 on a new bike - in fact, my newest is 12 yrs old and treats me very, very well.
I started back into the cycling heavily last year because 1) I wanted to improve my mental health - to the positive and 2) I didn't want to move up a size in the waist on my pants. I've since leaned up quite a bit and am even wearing pants I hadn't for a year or more. Just getting back on the bike is a great start even if it is just for a few miles at a time. The conditioning comes quickly at the beginning.
04-21-09, 08:24 AM
To find the foothills trail head east on Pioneer in downtown or drop down from shaw road and find Van leirops bulb farm on the left side of the road then cross the R.R. tracks and the trail is on the right you can't miss it. There is a nice paved parking area a few hundred feet east and the trail is paved all the way to South Prairie total RT is 30 miles give or take. Stop in Orting and see Brian at Trailside cyclery. Nice guy to deal with and he can fix you up with whatever you need. Another nice LBS is in Sumner on Main and Wood. Its Bonney lake bicycles of Sumner. Pretty nice bunch of guys and they deal in Specialized and some Bianchi stuff. Welcome back
04-21-09, 10:36 AM
As others have mentioned-- just take it easy and find those flat trails. If you find riding the multi-use trails more often, I would recommend switching from knobbies to smoother tires. Start off with a few miles and just build upon that. The trails that people mentioned is a great way to measure your fitness. Also ask around, your office workers and neighbors. Next month is Bike to Work month...lots of resources available there too (including Cascade's web site) =>
Although you mentioned your 1-way commute is a lot, you might try to do half bike, half public transportation. I know I do. I take the Sounder train in with my bike, then after work I ride either to Kent or Auburn, then catch the train back to Tacoma.
Good luck and let us know how your riding/fitness progresses!
04-21-09, 01:18 PM
Welcome, I would just like to repeat the advice above:
- Get a pair of smooth tires for your mountain bike; your MTB should be fine for getting back into shape.
- Start doing some research here at BF or elsewhere online on how to evaluate and fix up a used bike. Plenty of good used bikes for sale in this area on Craigslist - you can spend a couple of hundred dollars on a bike + maintenance and repairs, and have a good road bike until you know what you want for a future bike. The more your ride your goals will change.
04-21-09, 02:55 PM
Welcome back to bicycling. It's like being a kid again, even when you're on the downhill slide to 50. :cry:
A mountain bike is fine. I ride a touring bike approximately 80% of the time. Like mountain bikes, touring bikes are heavy, and in my opinion are great for training. Forces me to work harder when I might otherwise "cheat" by riding something lighter, not doing hills, etc.
You want to make this bicycling a habit, and to make it habit you have to reduce the number of excuses you have for not doing it. For example, can you do small rides (1 hour or so) from your doorstep, instead of always riding the trail? If your car breaks down or you're late coming home from work, you might be tempted to blow-off the ride if you have to drive there. The route from your doorstep might not be the most scenic, but, if it gets the job done (and it's safe) then it's worth considering. Then, on weekends, you can do the scenic routes.
Drink lots of water, all the time, while you are riding. Not just the hot days. It's amazing how tired your legs will get when they are dehydrated. And, they will stay tired the next day if you don't drink water.
Finally, you'll know when you are addicted to this habit when you can feel it when you don't bicycle regularly. And, the pain after a long ride will be "all-good".
04-22-09, 12:40 AM
Thanks a bunch from everyone I appreciate the insights and words of inspiration. I like my mountain bike a lot. I'll have to try out some smooth tires for my mountain bike, I honestly hadn't thought of that. I was looking at some road bikes at Bike Tech near me and saw that they have some road bikes that are new that really aren't THAT expensive but I will have to be smart and go check out used bikes also.
And BengeBoy I will have to do some more research on how to properly fix bikes. I use to know them in and out but like anything you come back to in the technical arena, takes time to remember the little things. I read up on how to adjust the front and rear derailers, I successfully adjusted the rear but after an hour of tweaking and turning and adjusting on the front, for some reason I just couldn't get it to work. So I took it over to Bike Tech and they said they would tune it up for free because I had bought the bike there so many years ago.
I don't get it back until Tuesday of next week though. =(
Oh well, I'll just have to hit up that freakin hell hole of a gym the next couple of days and get on the stationary.
04-22-09, 07:24 AM
want to do a marathon I recomend the STP. You can get in shape for it in just a few months, though a year would make it better. You have 2 options ride 2 days @ 100 miles per day or 1-200 mile day
The training guide
Lots of riders, lots of fun.
04-22-09, 11:54 PM
I had forgotten about STP, that will be my goal!
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