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  1. #26
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by bautieri View Post
    Confidence, that and not grabbing that right leaver so hard. You can use the back brake a little more until you get used to carring a bit more speed but generally speaking the faster the bike is traveling the easier it is to balance due to centrifical force.

    Nice suit BTW, you look snazzy in pin stripes
    Thank you. Pinstripes are a Neil thing, I understand. And since the woman sitting next to me at the reception gave me her email address without my asking, I guess I have the ultimate confirmation of my taste in clothes.

    When descending the 9 percent grade on the Audubon Loop yesterday, I was braking so frequently over the 1/4 mile descent that I felt like my rear wheel was coming off the ground. Dan suggested possibly vertigo on my part - I was more sleep deprived than normal. Perhaps I shouldn't have been using the front brake as much as I did. My speed on the downhill was 21.5. Dan's was 40.

    I wonder if my problems with speed relate to my problems with turns. I do not have tight turning, and I try not to lean much since I'm sort of "cockeyed" seated on the bike. You've seen me, Ben, so you know what I am talking about.

  2. #27
    Dwindling Roadie
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Historian View Post
    Thank you. Pinstripes are a Neil thing, I understand. And since the woman sitting next to me at the reception gave me her email address without my asking, I guess I have the ultimate confirmation of my taste in clothes.

    When descending the 9 percent grade on the Audubon Loop yesterday, I was braking so frequently over the 1/4 mile descent that I felt like my rear wheel was coming off the ground. Dan suggested possibly vertigo on my part - I was more sleep deprived than normal. Perhaps I shouldn't have been using the front brake as much as I did. My speed on the downhill was 21.5. Dan's was 40.

    I wonder if my problems with speed relate to my problems with turns. I do not have tight turning, and I try not to lean much since I'm sort of "cockeyed" seated on the bike. You've seen me, Ben, so you know what I am talking about.
    Let me make a BIG second on that "snazzy in pinstripes" comment. Looking sharp, Neil! And as Ben mentioned, centrifugal force is your friend - and you need to learn to trust your friends. I think we need to do some slow speed drills and games. Yes, Neil, next time we get together, we are going to play games.

    I also wanted to mention that you did a great job of pushing the pace several times during the ride yesterday. Your fitness is coming back, no doubt!

  3. #28
    Downtown Spanky Brown bautieri's Avatar
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    If it felt like the rear wheel was comming up it is quite possible that it was. It might not have ever left the ground but it is possible your weight shifted too far forward. Try sitting further back in the saddle when you decend hills.

    I'm not sure what to say about leaning when you turn other than to practice it. If you can find a parking lot that doesn't have any loose gravel on it you certainly could practice your cornering. Pick out a right angle and make some loops gradually building your speed. Eventually you'll be forced to lean in order to make the turn. It would probably help if your right angle turn is into the side you lean to. Give it some practice and time, you'll get it soon enough. Once you get the hang of leaning to one side switch the turn to the other side, then zig zag, then do figure eights.

    Also remember that those of us who grew up riding were still on training wheels or tricycles a year and a half into our cycling careers, your progress is outstanding IMHO.

  4. #29
    JRA. BikEthan's Avatar
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    What Bautieri said.

    You can really shift your weight WAY back if you need to on descents especially steeper ones. If you're using both brakes you'll know that your weight isn't shifted far enough back and/or that you're being too heavy handed on the rear brake if your rear tire starts to skid.
    2009 Bike Friday Season Tikit (commuting folder)
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  5. #30
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikEthan View Post
    What Bautieri said.

    You can really shift your weight WAY back if you need to on descents especially steeper ones. If you're using both brakes you'll know that your weight isn't shifted far enough back and/or that you're being too heavy handed on the rear brake if your rear tire starts to skid.
    OK, that's three votes in favor of the pinstripes.....

    Here's the hill in question:





    The only other times I've ridden down this hill I've been on the Navigator, a much heavier bike. I've also been carrying loaded panniers, since I was commuting at the time. So some of the feeling could simply be that I'm not used to riding my 7.5 fx down steep hills. It's a lot more nimble than my Navigator.

  6. #31
    Neil_B
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    The Comeback Trail applies to more than just riding. I went back to the gym yesterday. It's a new gym for me, less than a mile from the Perkiomen and Schuylkill River Trails and about 5 miles from my office. This will allow me to lift and ride too. Also, it's on my commuting route, so when I resume that, I have a place to change and shower on the way in - the twelve miles between my gym and home is where all the hills reside.

    I'd stopped working out prior to the tour, and after the accident I couldn't life because of the rib injury. So my first time lifting in more than four months went well. I was sore, but no more than I expected.

    While at the gym, I had to face something I've been putting off. But I learned back when I was 400 pounds that accountability is important. I took off my loaded-pocketed jersey, removed my shoes, and stepped up to the scale. I began to move the slider weights..... 250..... 260.... 270 .... Without moving a muscle I hoped against hope.... 280 and the arm was down. Back it off..... 279.... 278.... 277 and it balanced. I'd put on 35 pounds over a year, and to judge from the fit of my clothes, a good ten or more pounds since my accident. I know what to do, and I remember how to do it. Now to do it.

  7. #32
    Senior Member c_m_shooter's Avatar
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    Try going downhill like a mountain biker. Instead of leaving one pedal up and one down, put them at 3 and 9 o'clock. Stand up and hang your butt out behind the saddle while gripping it with your thighs. This keeps you balanced and in better control of the bike. Especially if you feel you need to ride the brakes.
    May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view.
    May your mountains rise into and above the clouds. -Edward Abbey

  8. #33
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Historian View Post
    The Comeback Trail applies to more than just riding. I went back to the gym yesterday. It's a new gym for me, less than a mile from the Perkiomen and Schuylkill River Trails and about 5 miles from my office. This will allow me to lift and ride too. Also, it's on my commuting route, so when I resume that, I have a place to change and shower on the way in - the twelve miles between my gym and home is where all the hills reside.

    I'd stopped working out prior to the tour, and after the accident I couldn't life because of the rib injury. So my first time lifting in more than four months went well. I was sore, but no more than I expected.

    While at the gym, I had to face something I've been putting off. But I learned back when I was 400 pounds that accountability is important. I took off my loaded-pocketed jersey, removed my shoes, and stepped up to the scale. I began to move the slider weights..... 250..... 260.... 270 .... Without moving a muscle I hoped against hope.... 280 and the arm was down. Back it off..... 279.... 278.... 277 and it balanced. I'd put on 35 pounds over a year, and to judge from the fit of my clothes, a good ten or more pounds since my accident. I know what to do, and I remember how to do it. Now to do it.
    First meeting with a trainer at my gym. Along with discussion of my goals, I grabbed a hand-held meter to measure my body fat. I'm coming in at 37%. We are aiming for 19%.

  9. #34
    Downtown Spanky Brown bautieri's Avatar
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    You know what you gotta do now get out and get back at it, you'll loose that weight again and then some!

  10. #35
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by bautieri View Post
    You know what you gotta do now get out and get back at it, you'll loose that weight again and then some!
    I went through the gym's 'orientation' routine, which serves as both a way to introduce me to the equipment and prepare me for the personal training sales pitch. I learned that I wasn't pushing myself hard enough when I was lifting previously. It seems all that physical therapy, while needed at that point in my life, taught me to play it very safe when it came to lifting. I'm still sore from my workout Friday.

    I turned down the 'invitation' to pay someone 180 dollars a month to watch me exercise. The big turnoff for me was the trainer's low opinion of cycling - "just cardio."

  11. #36
    Dwindling Roadie
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Historian View Post
    I went through the gym's 'orientation' routine, which serves as both a way to introduce me to the equipment and prepare me for the personal training sales pitch. I learned that I wasn't pushing myself hard enough when I was lifting previously. It seems all that physical therapy, while needed at that point in my life, taught me to play it very safe when it came to lifting. I'm still sore from my workout Friday.

    I turned down the 'invitation' to pay someone 180 dollars a month to watch me exercise. The big turnoff for me was the trainer's low opinion of cycling - "just cardio."
    Good decision, bro. And I would agree that you played it safe before - but that was a necessary measure for the time. Now it is time to really dig in, and it sounds like you are doing that. Feel free to ask about the weight training and methods that would apply to cycling. I've learned a thing or two in the few years that I've been riding!

  12. #37
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by uncadan8 View Post
    Good decision, bro. And I would agree that you played it safe before - but that was a necessary measure for the time. Now it is time to really dig in, and it sounds like you are doing that. Feel free to ask about the weight training and methods that would apply to cycling. I've learned a thing or two in the few years that I've been riding!
    OK, I will.

    While I wasn't impressed with all aspects of the trainer's attitude, he did give me some valuable insight and showed me the proper way to use some of the free-weights. I've had two problems with lifting before - the first being that I often did lifting that was unsafe for me, and secondly that after my injury and rehab I didn't push myself as I needed to. I've known how to deal with the first problem for a while; now to tackle the second.

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