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  1. #1
    time to start - again! timetostart's Avatar
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    Overweight Shetland Pony needs advice!

    Hi everyone,
    Came across a link to the Clydesdale section of this forum on Yahoo Answers and thought someone out there might be able to help me. To be honest I'm more of an overweight Shetland Pony than a Clydesdale! I'm approaching 50 years old, 5'2", over 220lb and haven't ridden a bike since I was in my teens. Sounds really bad when you write it down - it's time to do something! Fancy a mountain bike for off-road biking. Obviously first stop is a good local bike store, but I'd appreciate any other advice.
    Many thanks!
    ps local bike shop does Marin bikes - are they any good?

  2. #2
    Downtown Spanky Brown bautieri's Avatar
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    Can't say that I know much about Marin, but I got plenty of general advice.

    Determine your budget, bicycles can range from a few hundred to the price of a newer used car. Once you determine how much you are willing to spend its probably a good idea to find every bike shop in a radius that you are willing to travel. Use google and type something along the lines of "Bike Shop near <your home town here>". Ride every bike in your price range at a few different shops (if possible) and buy the one that gives you the biggest smile.

    At 220 lbs you probably wont have any trouble with frames and component strength provided you ride within the design limitations of the bicycle. If you give us a price range I'm sure we could recommend a bike for you.

    bau

  3. #3
    Senior Member BeckyW's Avatar
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    Think about the kind of riding you want to do, and also about whether this will be a "starter bike" until you get fitter, or if you'd be willing to get something different once your body has changed. If you get bitten by the bug as many of us have, you probably won't be happy on a comfort/hybrid type bike as your main bike, long term, but it may be the perfect thing for you to start with.
    "You must do the thing you think you cannot do." - Eleanor Roosevelt

  4. #4
    time to start - again! timetostart's Avatar
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    Thanks, both Bau and BeckyW. Having posted on the introduction forum, I have learned the Athena/Clydesdale terminology!! Took my first trip to a bike shop today, guy was very helpful and didn't think me too odd! Helped my confidence, as did reading a bit of BeckyW's blog. Will read more. Are most folk using this site from the US? Haven't seen many UK posts, maybe the Shetland pony imagery gets lost in translation!! (just in case - a Shetland pony is a short legged, round bellied pony!!) Anyway thanks again, will post again as I'm sure to have loads more questions.

  5. #5
    Downtown Spanky Brown bautieri's Avatar
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    Not a problem, happy to help. I understood the Shetland pony pun, once you get into it you'll probably pedal your way right of Clyde and into Quarter horse :-). I checked out the Marin website and the Alloy Hardtails seem to have some pretty nice component to cost ratio. Check out the Bobcat Trail, it's pretty snazzy looking and will handle your weight with no problem.

    To elaborate on what Becky said:

    whether this will be a "starter bike" until you get fitter, or if you'd be willing to get something different once your body has changed.
    This was the mistake I made and I certainly hope you wont follow me. I bought a low end bike thinking that if I didn't like it then I wouldn't be out much money, and if I did like then I could upgrade it. Fast forward a bit and I got some new parts on order to upgrade it, but trust me, you will spend less money just buying the better bike from the start. Even the modest upgrades I've made to it have put the cost of the bike well into 600 dollar range. But like they say, hindsight is 20/20. And defiantly buy a helmet with your bike.

    As far as cultural diversity goes, we have many friends from across the pond. The site is hosted in the US so yes the majority will be 'mericans. Just don't get upset with us for butchering your language.

    Bau
    Last edited by bautieri; 10-04-07 at 12:15 PM. Reason: profanity edit, my bad :-(

  6. #6
    On my TARDIScycle! KingTermite's Avatar
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    I'd say most of us are from the U.S., but there are definitely a few UKers and Australians, maybe a few others too. I think most of us know what a Shetland Pony is too....at least I do.

    As Bau mentioned, you really aren't big enough to have to worry about parts yet. Unless you get a super high end $8000 carbon fiber race road bike you are probably fine on just about anything at 220 pounds.

    Becky also made a good suggestion. You say you want to off-road, but you may want to get something more hybridy or comfort bike style to get used to riding first. Off-roading is a bit intense for a new rider (I tried it when I was new and it damn near scared me). Once you get your riding legs and are a bit fitter and used to the bike, then consider a solid mountain bike. That being said....there's no reason you can't ride a mountain bike on paved trails too.

    I guess I'd just suggest to start with some simple paved trail riding until you are more inclined to the riding. You will spend a little time with sore butt and working up your fitness level to get some miles in at first. It may be discouraging if you try to jump right into off-road riding.
    Quote Originally Posted by coffeecake View Post
    - it's pretty well established that Hitler was an *******.

  7. #7
    time to start - again! timetostart's Avatar
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    "TIMETOSTART HAS BEEN-AND-GONE-AND-DONE-IT"
    Taken the plunge (and a heap of advice from our very helpful local bike shop) and bought a Marin Juniper Trail. My husband has got himself a Marin Rocky Ridge. Decided if we are going to do it we should do it as right as we can afford. Plan to do exactly as you guys are suggesting to start with. "Mountain" biking is a long way off. Pathway riding will be more the thing to start with! We've lots of flat forest trails and quiet country roads where we live. My bike arrives next week, hubby's in November. So we are (almost) on our way!!
    Thanks again for the advice.

  8. #8
    On my TARDIScycle! KingTermite's Avatar
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    Your welcome....hope to see you hanging out with us in here.

    Another suggestion.....if those bikes are mountain bikes, they'll come with mountain bike (nobby) tires. If you start with only trail/paved riding, it may be worthwhile to get slick tires for now. They're typically dirt cheap (no pun intended).
    Quote Originally Posted by coffeecake View Post
    - it's pretty well established that Hitler was an *******.

  9. #9
    Downtown Spanky Brown bautieri's Avatar
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    Congratulations on the new bikes, they'll serve you well! Wait until you take your first ride, you'll feel like a kid who just got their first bike.

    Oh, and when you get the bike(s) we demand photographs because

    Last edited by bautieri; 10-05-07 at 11:43 AM. Reason: .gif file did not work.

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