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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 09-27-07, 10:50 AM   #1
-Joseph
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I finally got a bike, now what?

I decided to go road bike instead of hardtail, and bought a vintage Miyata. So how do I get started? I mean, how far should I go or try to go anyway. I am thinking of hitting the local bike path this weekend to get started. I have to figure out the little computer thingy to watch my cadence, and keep track of my mileage and speed and stuff. I know proper form is important, so I assume I may not go as far if I try to ride properly vs. the old pedal for a while coast for a while routine. Just a little anxious and overwhelmed.....

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Old 09-27-07, 10:53 AM   #2
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OK....don't worry about cadence yet. Just get used to the bike and riding first. Make sure to take water with you and just go as far as your body tells you is comfortable (remembering if its an "out and back", that you need to turn around at your halfway point).

It isn't that complicated....I know, I get caught up in the "techno-gizmos" too, but try to get away from that and just ride (I still have to work on that issue a lot too).
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Old 09-27-07, 11:08 AM   #3
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Welcome to the wonderful addiction! I agree with KT, by the way. Keep it simple at first and just ride
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Old 09-27-07, 11:10 AM   #4
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OK....don't worry about cadence yet. Just get used to the bike and riding first. Make sure to take water with you and just go as far as your body tells you is comfortable (remembering if its an "out and back", that you need to turn around at your halfway point).

It isn't that complicated....I know, I get caught up in the "techno-gizmos" too, but try to get away from that and just ride (I still have to work on that issue a lot too).
+ 1

Just go out and have fun doing some riding... When and if you get bored with that, then start thinking about how many miles you have went.

Be safe...
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Old 09-27-07, 11:33 AM   #5
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Thanks everyone! I will give it a try and I guess we can go from there. Might even go out tonight if I can find a helmet I like.

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Old 09-27-07, 12:03 PM   #6
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Just get on the bike and ride it. You can't refine your riding style or strategy with no data to work on.
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Old 09-27-07, 01:46 PM   #7
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Depending on your conditioning, don't push too much the first day or so. It's real easy to end up hurting the next day and getting discouraged.
Make sure your seat is set to the proper height. Most new riders have it set too low. This is less efficient and also more strain on the knees.
Basically, you want to fully extend your legs with your HEELS on the pedals, without rocking your hips.
IF you are in doubt about WHEN to shift, you most likely are better off to pick the lower, easier gear and spin faster. Your stamina will be much better by spinning fast & easy vs pushing slow & hard.
Just enjoy it. When I first got back in to riding, I tried to go max speed wherever I went. I've backed off to what I can comfortably sustain and suffer MUCH LESS misery! You reach a point where that 1-2 MPH faster takes MUCH more effort!
Again, just do a short distance the first day and let your legs tell you the next day how much more you can do.
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Old 09-27-07, 02:24 PM   #8
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Just ride and have fun! Remember to turn around before you get tired though.
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Old 09-27-07, 05:36 PM   #9
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Congrats on the bike. I would say have fun with it for a while and get used to it before the total obsession with performance sets in.

And as my wife wisely told me... 'Remember, you have to be able to ride back how ever far you ride out'. I think this was either right before or right after she told me "Remember, you are not 20 years old any more.'
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Old 09-27-07, 06:00 PM   #10
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one mile at a time.........have fun
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Old 09-27-07, 08:18 PM   #11
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Save the electronic doohingy till you get bored. Pedal, explore, enjoy.
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Old 09-27-07, 09:29 PM   #12
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Have fun! Don't "mash" the pedals (where you have to push really hard and slow) because it'll make your knees hurt. Just enjoy yourself, then come back and tell us about it!
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Old 09-28-07, 01:13 AM   #13
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Just ride and have fun! Remember to turn around before you get tired though.
Great advice!

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Old 09-29-07, 04:01 PM   #14
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Thanks ya'll. I went out for 4 miles last night, then I hurt my back doing yardwork today. Hopefully I will be good to go tomorrow.

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Old 09-29-07, 05:47 PM   #15
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Just ride and enjoy yourself, you'll soon figure out what pace suits you, remember always have fun
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Old 09-29-07, 11:48 PM   #16
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A lot of good advise was already given. One other thing to be prepared for it a flat tire. Take along a spare tube, patch kit, tire tools, and a pump! I have seen too many people who, appear to be new to cycling, walking their bikes along the path with a flat tire. I also suggest taking a cell phone, some money and an ID just in case.

As the others said, don't worry about cadence and other things until you get comfortable with the bike, reaching down for your water bottle, and knowing when to turn around. Also, remember you are out to have fun and get a little exercise while having fun!

I guess I had more than 'one more thing' to day....
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Old 09-30-07, 05:36 AM   #17
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Welcome to the fun.

Make sure your tires are inflated properly.
Stay hydrated.
Speed and distance come with time. If your not a type A personality relax and enjoy the outdoors, the sounds, smells, and listen to the bike's engine.
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Old 09-30-07, 11:19 AM   #18
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Flat tires were something i was worried about, but the guy I bought the bike from through in a new tube, patch kit, and there is a pump on board. As much as I don't like the looks of the rack and pack on over the back wheel it is handy. All that goes in there (except the pump wedged in the frame), along with my wallet and cell.

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