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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 07-17-08, 07:41 AM   #1
Neil_B
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Suggestions for riding the comback trail?

OK, I'm working on the bollard problem, and I've completed a hard 26 mile ride yesterday. So I'll tentatively accept the title of "cyclist" pending further analysis.

I have two major goals this summer:

1. ride my tour out in Pittsburgh - either the trail to Cumberland, or the whole enchilada to DC. This begins August 16.

2. Ride the MS City to Shore both days, 100 miles down, 75 miles back. This is the last weekend in September.

What can I do, other than ride a lot, to get ready for these events? I lost a good chunk of my conditioning over the five weeks I was off the bike.
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Old 07-17-08, 07:44 AM   #2
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Pedal your butt off. Surprisingly, condition lost comes back fairly quickly as compared to getting better shape the first time. Your body is already familiar with the demands, so it's not as strange as the first time around.

I'd suggest maybe having Dan beat ya up on a few rides.
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Old 07-17-08, 07:53 AM   #3
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Pedal your butt off. Surprisingly, condition lost comes back fairly quickly as compared to getting better shape the first time. Your body is already familiar with the demands, so it's not as strange as the first time around.
I was surprised at my strength on the 26 mile ride. I felt a trifle wobbly, particularly at higher speeds, but I was assured by my riding companion that I was riding better now than I was last year.

Still, I've lost a bit from the accident. The week prior to leaving on tour, while on a ride to Philadelphia, I hung with a group of roadies for a mile and a half at 18 MPH. They kept giving me backward glances to see if the fat guy with panniers was still keeping pace with them.
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Old 07-17-08, 08:08 AM   #4
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It'll come back pretty quick, though. No worries there. Mostly, what you need is to keep your confidence, my friend. It's too easy to slip into the "I can't handle this" mentality for ALL of us. Once there, it seems too hard and next thing you know, you're a couch potatoe again.

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I was surprised at my strength on the 26 mile ride. I felt a trifle wobbly, particularly at higher speeds, but I was assured by my riding companion that I was riding better now than I was last year.

Still, I've lost a bit from the accident. The week prior to leaving on tour, while on a ride to Philadelphia, I hung with a group of roadies for a mile and a half at 18 MPH. They kept giving me backward glances to see if the fat guy with panniers was still keeping pace with them.
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Old 07-17-08, 08:13 AM   #5
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traat every ride as you own personal TT.

you vs last months you
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Old 07-17-08, 08:23 AM   #6
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It'll come back pretty quick, though. No worries there. Mostly, what you need is to keep your confidence, my friend. It's too easy to slip into the "I can't handle this" mentality for ALL of us. Once there, it seems too hard and next thing you know, you're a couch potatoe again.
+1000
My months off the bike this winter were never more apparent than after my first few rides this year. My first 100 mile week, in particular, was a challenge. The second was brutal. Then pretty quickly everything got back to "normal" and I was stronger than before. The first few weeks back are going to involve some effort, but after that your strength will continue to grow by leaps and bounds.
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Old 07-18-08, 06:10 AM   #7
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I've had what may be a minor setback. Or not. I don't know. But the rib soreness is back. A mild soreness, but a soreness nevertheless. I didn't have it when I rode Wednesday, or after riding, but definitely the next day. And this morning as well. I'm half tempted to skip my ride today. I'm worried I'm trying too much too soon.
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Old 07-18-08, 06:16 AM   #8
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Try a little Aspercreme on the area. Your rib should be fairly strong now an what's happening is most likely a bit of muscle irritation in the intracostal muscles. If it continues, though, check with your doctor.
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Old 07-18-08, 06:53 AM   #9
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I think one of my biggest mistakes after getting doored in 05 was not pushing myself hard enough to get myself back in shape. I'd been working hard for a few years to get fit and while I was back on the bike pretty quickly (about 3 weeks) I was pretty timid and pretty much stopped doing any other conditioning or weight training. It's taken me a lot longer to get back to where I was because of this. That being said temperance is key, and listening to your body is also key. Maybe try going on that ride but take it easy and see how it feels today? Take a break and stretch out a bit?
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Old 07-18-08, 07:22 AM   #10
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It'll come back pretty quick, though. No worries there. Mostly, what you need is to keep your confidence, my friend. It's too easy to slip into the "I can't handle this" mentality for ALL of us. Once there, it seems too hard and next thing you know, you're a couch potatoe again.
As we've seen recently, I fall into that state easily. I'm struggling with the desire to simply take it easy. At the same time I'd like folks to look at me and think, "he's a good rider." Right now, between the weight gain and my being out of shape I don't feel comfortable physically or mentally in the saddle, and I need to be in the saddle to become who I want to be.
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Old 07-18-08, 07:24 AM   #11
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I think one of my biggest mistakes after getting doored in 05 was not pushing myself hard enough to get myself back in shape. I'd been working hard for a few years to get fit and while I was back on the bike pretty quickly (about 3 weeks) I was pretty timid and pretty much stopped doing any other conditioning or weight training. It's taken me a lot longer to get back to where I was because of this. That being said temperance is key, and listening to your body is also key. Maybe try going on that ride but take it easy and see how it feels today? Take a break and stretch out a bit?
Between all the touring, my accident, and other activities, my gym membership lapsed. I'm starting over from zero.
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Old 07-18-08, 07:29 AM   #12
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OK, I'll put it bluntly then. Get yer arse riding! You can choose to either take thyself in hand and progress, or you can choose to wallow in despair and become a couch potatoe again......it's entirely your choice, my friend. Personally, I hope you get your butt in gear, myself.

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As we've seen recently, I fall into that state easily. I'm struggling with the desire to simply take it easy. At the same time I'd like folks to look at me and think, "he's a good rider." Right now, between the weight gain and my being out of shape I don't feel comfortable physically or mentally in the saddle, and I need to be in the saddle to become who I want to be.
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Old 07-18-08, 07:32 AM   #13
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OK, I'll put it bluntly then. Get yer arse riding! You can choose to either take thyself in hand and progress, or you can choose to wallow in despair and become a couch potatoe again......it's entirely your choice, my friend. Personally, I hope you get your butt in gear, myself.
Tom, you have a wonderful mind for the obvious. I don't think I've posted I'm giving up this week, have I?
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Old 07-18-08, 07:39 AM   #14
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Between all the touring, my accident, and other activities, my gym membership lapsed. I'm starting over from zero.

Can't tell if you're being sarcastic or not. In any case. I think it's OK to let your gym membership lapse if you're touring, getting into an accident, etc... For my part I didn't have a gym membership before my accident, as I couldn't afford one, I was just doing what I could with limited resources at home.

Regarding starting from zero. From what I've read of your story here that is far from true.
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Old 07-18-08, 07:52 AM   #15
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Can't tell if you're being sarcastic or not. In any case. I think it's OK to let your gym membership lapse if you're touring, getting into an accident, etc... For my part I didn't have a gym membership before my accident, as I couldn't afford one, I was just doing what I could with limited resources at home.

Regarding starting from zero. From what I've read of your story here that is far from true.
What I meant was I was no longer doing upper body lifting even before the accident. I'm back to pipe cleaner arms and weak core muscles. One reason I feel more wobbly is probably that my core muscles are weak.
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Old 07-18-08, 08:22 AM   #16
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Call it preemptive, Neil.....just a reminder that we actually do care.

Naw, I don't think you're giving up...

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Tom, you have a wonderful mind for the obvious. I don't think I've posted I'm giving up this week, have I?
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Old 07-18-08, 10:16 PM   #17
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I'd suggest maybe having Dan beat ya up on a few rides.
So he told you about the ride, huh? BTW, the t-shirt looks nice.

Oh, and it was 27 miles, not 26. 11.34 MPH average. I must check the computer before posting.
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Old 07-18-08, 10:18 PM   #18
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I've had what may be a minor setback. Or not. I don't know. But the rib soreness is back. A mild soreness, but a soreness nevertheless. I didn't have it when I rode Wednesday, or after riding, but definitely the next day. And this morning as well. I'm half tempted to skip my ride today. I'm worried I'm trying too much too soon.
I rode anyway. Seven miles on as flat a route I can get from my home, but riding nevertheless.
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Old 07-18-08, 10:33 PM   #19
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Sounds to me like your comming back fine. The rib is most likely sore because youve been down a while. Don't work so hard at it enjoy riding and getting back in bike shape will come. Sometimes I can turn riding into a job. I have one. I love it but I don't need anouther. Dvrfox helped me with that about a week ago.

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Old 07-19-08, 10:41 AM   #20
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Sounds to me like your comming back fine. The rib is most likely sore because youve been down a while. Don't work so hard at it enjoy riding and getting back in bike shape will come. Sometimes I can turn riding into a job. I have one. I love it but I don't need anouther. Dvrfox helped me with that about a week ago.
With that thought in mind, I skipped riding today, because my rib area is still tender, my lower back hurts, it's 95 degrees out, and I have a wedding to attend in a few hours. (First suit I purchase since my weight loss and I get to wear it on a 90 minute drive in my heat-trap of a Neilmobile.)
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Old 07-19-08, 11:51 AM   #21
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With that thought in mind, I skipped riding today, because my rib area is still tender, my lower back hurts, it's 95 degrees out, and I have a wedding to attend in a few hours. (First suit I purchase since my weight loss and I get to wear it on a 90 minute drive in my heat-trap of a Neilmobile.)
You have a heat trap too? For years I had a F-150 "Custom" that had no AC, but refused to break. Then some jerk broke the whole thing for me, so for the past two and a half years I've been pretty spoiled with working ice-cold AC. The new free Taurus has non-functional AC, but with all the windows down and the sunroof open (not just tilted) the air flows pretty dang nice.

Funniest part is, it's only about $120 to get the AC fixed. I told my wife this morning that I could find a hundred other ways to spend that money than on a car, and not only that, but on a car to add comfort. She says I'm a cheap old weirdo .

However, I too have a long drive coming up that requires good clothing. Thankfully work has this policy that for any trip over 30 miles we have the option of renting a car, so I'm going to definitely be exercising that option. Were I not, I'd totally cave and use our minivan which would surely incur banter from said wifey .

Sidenote, very good to hear you are back, Neil. VERY good.
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Old 07-19-08, 02:03 PM   #22
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You have a heat trap too? For years I had a F-150 "Custom" that had no AC, but refused to break. Then some jerk broke the whole thing for me, so for the past two and a half years I've been pretty spoiled with working ice-cold AC. The new free Taurus has non-functional AC, but with all the windows down and the sunroof open (not just tilted) the air flows pretty dang nice.

Funniest part is, it's only about $120 to get the AC fixed. I told my wife this morning that I could find a hundred other ways to spend that money than on a car, and not only that, but on a car to add comfort. She says I'm a cheap old weirdo .

However, I too have a long drive coming up that requires good clothing. Thankfully work has this policy that for any trip over 30 miles we have the option of renting a car, so I'm going to definitely be exercising that option. Were I not, I'd totally cave and use our minivan which would surely incur banter from said wifey .

Sidenote, very good to hear you are back, Neil. VERY good.
I dicovered something years ago, the first thing to break on a car, will probably be the AC, and the most expensive thing to fix, is said AC. The only cars I have bought with A/C had it already, and when it broke, I simply used the windows....... Now with the high price of gas, you have to know when it's more efficient to and not to use the A/C. General rule at speeds of less then 80km/h (50 MPH), use the windows, at higher speeds, use the A/C as the drag caused by the open windows uses more gas then the A/C does. If you don't have A/C then at higher speeds, use vents and fans.

As for clothing, how about as if you were biking there, simply take your good clothes with you, and find a place to change once you arrive.....
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Old 07-20-08, 03:30 AM   #23
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You have a heat trap too? For years I had a F-150 "Custom" that had no AC, but refused to break. Then some jerk broke the whole thing for me, so for the past two and a half years I've been pretty spoiled with working ice-cold AC. The new free Taurus has non-functional AC, but with all the windows down and the sunroof open (not just tilted) the air flows pretty dang nice.

Funniest part is, it's only about $120 to get the AC fixed. I told my wife this morning that I could find a hundred other ways to spend that money than on a car, and not only that, but on a car to add comfort. She says I'm a cheap old weirdo .

However, I too have a long drive coming up that requires good clothing. Thankfully work has this policy that for any trip over 30 miles we have the option of renting a car, so I'm going to definitely be exercising that option. Were I not, I'd totally cave and use our minivan which would surely incur banter from said wifey .

Sidenote, very good to hear you are back, Neil. VERY good.
The air conditioning did manage to cool the car after about 45 minutes. Meanwhile I was cooking in a wool suit. Despite that, and despite the fact I probably ate too much, things went well. There's a better photograph of me taken with my friend the groom, but until that's available, here's what I look like cleaned up. I don't think the photograph does justice to either me or the suit (dark charcoal pinstripe), but what can you do?



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Old 07-30-08, 10:40 PM   #24
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So he told you about the ride, huh? BTW, the t-shirt looks nice.

Oh, and it was 27 miles, not 26. 11.34 MPH average. I must check the computer before posting.
It was 34 and a fraction miles today. 11.58 MPH average. At the 29 mile mark it was just about 12 MPH, but a hill descent slowed me down.

Yes, descent. I have a big problem with braking. I brake on curves. I brake going down hills. I brake going through bollards. How do I get over this? Or around it, at least?
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Old 07-31-08, 06:17 AM   #25
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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
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