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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 06-19-08, 08:00 AM   #1
foxtrot603
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3 Firsts (Post/Buy/Ride)

Another first post/buy/ride post...

First Post Bit

I have been lurking for a bit. I have to give credit to Tom Stormcrowe and Bdinger (there are others too!) for inspiring me to take the plunge. I always thought I was too big to ride comfortably, but the experiences posted by others really helped sway my misconception. So I hope my story will help more lurkers/fencepost sitters make a decision like me.

A brief autobiography to start. After graduating from Purdue in 1996, the pounds kept piling on year after year and at age 35, I need change this trend now. I am a Clyde currently at 417 pounds which is down 13 pounds from my maximum of 430 (March 14, 2008) when I decided that I needed more exercise and started walking to relieve some work stress. I followed this up with walking down to Buffalo Wild Wings on Wednesday evenings for the weekly hump day guys night out and also to the local movie theaters on weekends. For a large guy, I consider myself to be relatively fit. How many 400+ pound guys do you know that can play 18-holes of golf without a golf cart? Enough about me, on to the...

...First Buy

Like many other riders, I rode bikes in my younger days and had all but ignored the recreation or transportation mechanism for nearly 20 years. It just seems that once you get your driver's license, you forget about your 2-wheeled friend. It was time. It only took 2 trips the the LBS (in my case Hodson's Bay). The first time I was largely ignored, but I was also sweaty and a bit tired as I had just walked to the shop on one of the hottest Lafayette afternoon's of the year and it was nearly closing time. On Tuesdat, I walked down to the shop again and popped in and found the Specialized Hardrock Sports and camped out until someone I was asked if I needed help. After a brief discussion, the sales associate and I each grabbed a Hardrock and headed outside. It is true...you never forget how to ride a bike! The Hardrock felt good, but I wanted to make sure so we headed back in and I tried a Giant. A little negotiation and BOOM, I am now the proud owner of a Specialized Hardrock Sport.



First Ride
Instead of 'walking' back home, I rode the Hardrock home (was that not the whole point of yesterday's visit to the LBS? ). It is only 1.5 miles, but what a difference! A completely different workout from walking. My quads were burning by the half way point and I am glad I got caught by a red light which allowed me to recover a bit before continuing. I live on a hill and I walked the bike up as I was already knackered from this short ride. My heart was pounding and I truly had a good cardio workout from this short trip. My office chair accustomed rear is only a little sore today.


Goals:

Weekend rides with friends (typically 20 miles)

Begin bike commuting to work (driving it is 13 miles round trip; I expect the best bike path will be 15 miles RT) at least 3 times a week (that $85 tank fill up hurts)

Eventually bike from Lafayette, Indiana to Mishawaka (my hometown). This is a long term goal as it will be a 120+ mile trip one-way!
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Old 06-19-08, 08:32 AM   #2
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Another first post/buy/ride post...

First Post Bit

I have been lurking for a bit. I have to give credit to Tom Stormcrowe and Bdinger (there are others too!) for inspiring me to take the plunge. I always thought I was too big to ride comfortably, but the experiences posted by others really helped sway my misconception. So I hope my story will help more lurkers/fencepost sitters make a decision like me.

A brief autobiography to start. After graduating from Purdue in 1996, the pounds kept piling on year after year and at age 35, I need change this trend now. I am a Clyde currently at 417 pounds which is down 13 pounds from my maximum of 430 (March 14, 2008) when I decided that I needed more exercise and started walking to relieve some work stress. I followed this up with walking down to Buffalo Wild Wings on Wednesday evenings for the weekly hump day guys night out and also to the local movie theaters on weekends. For a large guy, I consider myself to be relatively fit. How many 400+ pound guys do you know that can play 18-holes of golf without a golf cart? Enough about me, on to the...

...First Buy

Like many other riders, I rode bikes in my younger days and had all but ignored the recreation or transportation mechanism for nearly 20 years. It just seems that once you get your driver's license, you forget about your 2-wheeled friend. It was time. It only took 2 trips the the LBS (in my case Hodson's Bay). The first time I was largely ignored, but I was also sweaty and a bit tired as I had just walked to the shop on one of the hottest Lafayette afternoon's of the year and it was nearly closing time. On Tuesdat, I walked down to the shop again and popped in and found the Specialized Hardrock Sports and camped out until someone I was asked if I needed help. After a brief discussion, the sales associate and I each grabbed a Hardrock and headed outside. It is true...you never forget how to ride a bike! The Hardrock felt good, but I wanted to make sure so we headed back in and I tried a Giant. A little negotiation and BOOM, I am now the proud owner of a Specialized Hardrock Sport.



First Ride
Instead of 'walking' back home, I rode the Hardrock home (was that not the whole point of yesterday's visit to the LBS? ). It is only 1.5 miles, but what a difference! A completely different workout from walking. My quads were burning by the half way point and I am glad I got caught by a red light which allowed me to recover a bit before continuing. I live on a hill and I walked the bike up as I was already knackered from this short ride. My heart was pounding and I truly had a good cardio workout from this short trip. My office chair accustomed rear is only a little sore today.


Goals:

Weekend rides with friends (typically 20 miles)

Begin bike commuting to work (driving it is 13 miles round trip; I expect the best bike path will be 15 miles RT) at least 3 times a week (that $85 tank fill up hurts)

Eventually bike from Lafayette, Indiana to Mishawaka (my hometown). This is a long term goal as it will be a 120+ mile trip one-way!
All reasonable goals, including the last one. I'm always pleased to see someone take up touring.

Welcome to the forum, and I look forward to reading of your progress.
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Old 06-19-08, 08:37 AM   #3
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Welcome aboard. Nice choice going with the "house bike". Keep after it and you will find commuting by bike quite addicting.

Enjoy
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Old 06-19-08, 09:41 AM   #4
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All those goals are easily reachable. You may want to swap out some slicks for the knobbies to smooth out the ride and go a little faster. Ride 4-5 days out of 7 for the next couple weeks and you should be able to start commuting after that. Afterall, it's only 6.5 miles each way. After that, the 20 mile rides with friends will be doable and with some longer rides, the ride home will be doable. Enjoy!
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Old 06-19-08, 09:44 AM   #5
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Hey, foxtrot! A fellow Lafayettian!

If you do any road, PM me.
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Old 06-19-08, 09:55 AM   #6
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Welcome to the forum, and nice ride choice! Those are all very reasonable and achievable goals, just remember you WILL hurt for a couple weeks. Hell, there are days (like this morning) that those of us who ride daily hurt like the dickens. After a mile or two, though, everything works itself out.

KEEP WITH IT! If your ride is a block on a recovery day, do it. You'll feel better for doing it.

Also if you ride mostly on roads, consider swapping the tires out. The stock knobbies have an unreal amount of resistance, when I put some Nimbus Armadillos on my Hardrock it changed the bike COMPLETELY.
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Old 06-19-08, 10:58 AM   #7
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I'm from Elkhart(living in NY now), a ride from Lafayette up could be done and wouldn't be the most awful ride in the world, though you'd want to be careful on route selection. There are some pretty barren stretches of road in Indiana as you are well aware I'm sure . Congrats and good luck!

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Old 06-19-08, 11:36 AM   #8
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FWIW, I have a map book of every paved secondary road in Indiana, and local to you as well....planning the ride could be fun, especially since I wouldn't mind doing that route as well, but stretching a bit further and going on up to Michigan and riding the shoreline up to Holland State Park and back.....I also have the Michigan Gazeteer as well.

By the way, here's a great resource for you!

http://www.wrcc-in.org/routes/index.shtml#charlie_myer
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Old 06-19-08, 11:55 AM   #9
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Welcome!

Keep in mind, it's mostly about the rider, not so much the bike. I rode my first metric century on knobbies; it's definitely easier with slicks, but not all that different.
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Old 06-19-08, 12:03 PM   #10
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Old 06-19-08, 04:31 PM   #11
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welcome!
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Old 06-19-08, 05:43 PM   #12
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Nice bike and Welcome to the forum!!!!
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Old 06-19-08, 08:22 PM   #13
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For a large guy, I consider myself to be relatively fit. How many 400+ pound guys do you know that can play 18-holes of golf without a golf cart?
LOL. Golf is game that requires great skill, but it is not exercise.

Quote:
Originally Posted by foxtrot603 View Post
I am now the proud owner of a Specialized Hardrock Sport.
That's one sweet ride!

Quote:
Originally Posted by foxtrot603 View Post
I live on a hill and I walked the bike up as I was already knackered from this short ride.
Can you go up the hill doing S turns? That's one way to battle a hill.

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Originally Posted by foxtrot603 View Post
Goals:

Begin bike commuting to work (driving it is 13 miles round trip; I expect the best bike path will be 15 miles RT) at least 3 times a week (that $85 tank fill up hurts)
I think you're gonna be surprised how quickly you reach that goal. You're doing everything the right way and off to a great start. Rock on!

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Old 06-20-08, 03:26 AM   #14
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Old 06-20-08, 04:00 AM   #15
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Cool! I'm just getting back into it myself. You're right about giving it up after getting a driver's license, but it all comes back.
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Old 06-20-08, 05:00 AM   #16
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Welcome to the 'Hood!

I'm fairly new myself, and have found the group to be some of the most supportive and friendly folks you could ever hope to find.


Enjoy the new ride and stick with it. In no time you will stop thinking of it as excercise when you realize one day you can't wait to get out for a ride, get back, and decide to go again.

Keep it up
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Old 06-20-08, 06:46 AM   #17
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LOL. Golf is game that requires great skill, but it is not exercise.

I will respectfully disagree. Golfing is exercise. It might not have the intense cardio aspect that biking can achieve, but walking 6800+ yards carrying 25 lbs (and that is only from the back tees to green!) is exercise. Caloric burn is over 4000.
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Old 06-20-08, 08:01 AM   #18
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+1 on the slicks versus knobbies. I bought a set of slicks from Nashbar on sale, 26 x 1.25 as I recall. They totally changed the street characteristics of my mountain bike.
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Old 06-20-08, 08:08 AM   #19
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Welcome aboard and congratulations on your new ride! Good luck on reaching all your goals!
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Old 06-22-08, 04:31 PM   #20
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You're on the right track!

You may have some butt pain for the first week or two (I know I did), but just start with 1-2 mile rides around your neighborhood most days (15-20 min or so on the bike, pace yourself), and you'll be able to stretch that much further in just a couple of weeks. Be sure you aren't using a high gear with a lot of pedal resistance, you want your heart and lungs to do the work not your legs!
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Old 06-22-08, 05:11 PM   #21
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+1 on all the above and welcome to the forum!

Great bunch of people here and a super source for information and support.
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Old 06-23-08, 10:01 AM   #22
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Thanks to everyone for the warm welcome.

Needless to say, the butt is hurting (I have biking underliner being delivered today). If that does not help, I will start the search for a more comfortable saddle (probably start with the Brooks B-17).

Re: Slicks
I plan to change over to more road worthy tread as soon as I become acclimated to riding again.

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Old 06-23-08, 10:25 AM   #23
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Talk to Dan or one of the others at Hodson's about geax Evolutions. They are a great tire for multi surface, and would do you quite well for whatever conditions you'll meet around here. The Lafayette PD's bike patrol uses them because of their toughness, as well as their low rolling resistance and good traction on anything from pavement to grass to hard pack and gravel.

I used them on my old mountain bike before I went exclusively road bikes. They are also Kevlar cored, and I never, ever flatted on them. They are a heavy tire is the only issue at 880 grams/tire. I used them for single track as well as loaded touring though. The pavement ridge in the center makes them roll like a road bike tire, almost, and the block tread acts like a slick on pavement and an off road tire on the dirt. They are not good mud tires, though is their only drawback.

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Old 06-26-08, 04:46 PM   #24
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Talk to Dan or one of the others at Hodson's about geax Evolutions. They are a great tire for multi surface, and would do you quite well for whatever conditions you'll meet around here. The Lafayette PD's bike patrol uses them because of their toughness, as well as their low rolling resistance and good traction on anything from pavement to grass to hard pack and gravel.

I used them on my old mountain bike before I went exclusively road bikes. They are also Kevlar cored, and I never, ever flatted on them. They are a heavy tire is the only issue at 880 grams/tire. I used them for single track as well as loaded touring though. The pavement ridge in the center makes them roll like a road bike tire, almost, and the block tread acts like a slick on pavement and an off road tire on the dirt. They are not good mud tires, though is their only drawback.
Excellent suggestion. I will definitely put the Geax Evolutions on the short list.

The biking underliner (finally) arrived and there was definitely a comfort improvement today. There is still some butt discomfort so I kept it short at 1.5 miles (double my last 2 painful mini-rides). I even mostly tackled the estimated 17 degree uphill grade half block back to my house.

This weekend's goal is to ride 2 of 3 days...at least 5 miles total! This will be combined with (minimum) 5 miles of walking the golf course planned on Sunday...so there will be plenty of exercise this weekend!
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Old 06-26-08, 05:39 PM   #25
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Cool, so you maybe up for a ride next weekend? We could meet at Panera's, maybe and ride out to the Fort and back, easy pace, you set it......

I could maybe arrange to have you meet a couple other riders in the area as well. PM me if interested and I'll give you my contact details.

I'd suggest this weekend upcoming, but I'm going to be out of town, racing.
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