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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 10-15-08, 05:15 PM   #1
jesspal
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Longest ride to date

Good Evening,
I did my first 40 mile ride today in everglades national park in south florida. I rode 20 miles in and did very well, made it in about an hour and 10 minutes. I stopped for a few minutes ate a cliff bar and turned around. On the way back I was riding into the wind, after the first two miles back I was like oh snap this is gonna be difficult. I did make it back it took around 2 hours and 45 minutes. I didn't take any breaks on the way out, on the way i i took about 10. I felt like i got hit by a car when i got finished, but two hours later and a couple advil and i feel terrific.

I enjoy the thrill of a long ride so i definately will be investing in a road bike, maybe a flat bar road bike. I am torn at this moment because I am intimidated by the drop down bars.

I ride a 2005 department store GT Palomar with knobby tires, I also tip the scales at 293 so this was a big load heading into the wind.

Thanks for reading,
Jess
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Old 10-15-08, 05:55 PM   #2
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First congrats on the ride! You did the right thing by riding hard when you felt good and taking breaks when needed. Wind is tough! Try riding during a Santa Ana!!!

Second don't be intimidated by a drop out bar. I seldom ride in the dropouts but they are there if I need them. At least with drop outs you have options. With a flat bar you are limited. There are many different kinds of drop out bars to choose from. You should be able to find something that suits your needs.

I plan on visiting a friend in March who moved to Florida (outside Orlando) last year. Can't wait. Will be my first visit!
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Old 10-15-08, 06:33 PM   #3
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Thanks for the feedback, i am gonna go to LBS and test drive a couple road bikes, then probably buy one used. Tomorrow i'm going to LBS to have my knobby tires changed to some slick street tires since i don't ever go offroading.
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Old 10-15-08, 06:52 PM   #4
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Congrats!! It will get better much faster than you could ever imagine.

I second the drop out bar. You will eventually find yourself down on them most of the time - and thats good, since it puts your spine in much healthier position.
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Old 10-15-08, 08:50 PM   #5
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Great job!!! You won't believe the difference on a road bike. Keep up the good work.
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Old 10-15-08, 09:04 PM   #6
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Congrats!

FWIW, those drop bars provide a lot of different hand positions. This is great on long rides as you can move your hands around to keep them from going numb. The single position on the flat bars isn't nearly as comfortable on long rides.
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Old 10-16-08, 02:01 AM   #7
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I started on a hybrid, had my LBS put road slicks on it, and less than 2 months later I went and bought a Road Bike. Putting the slicks on the Hybrid helped tremendously! I gained about 2 mph average BUT it also made me realize just how incapable the bike was for what I wanted to do, which was ride long distances at a decent pace on roads. I found my Trek road bike MORE comfortable than my Hybrid. I can ride hours with no back pain, no shoulder pain (and I have a bad shoulder) and no fatigue. Plus, you can FURTHER FASTER!
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Old 10-16-08, 05:14 AM   #8
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Great work jesspal, next stop 100km!!!

20 miles in 1 hour and 10 minutes is hauling a_s! I bet if you slow down and pace yourself you could knock out a 50 mile ride no sweat. Still, that was a great effort. When you first test ride a drop bar road bike it will be different, be careful not to over compensate your movements as the steering is much more twitchy. Like comparing a tank to a corvette. Good luck and let us know how the test rides go.

BTW, if you come home with a new bike we will require pictures. Don't be selfish, share the bike porn.
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Old 10-16-08, 05:58 AM   #9
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BTW, if you come home with a new bike we will require pictures. Don't be selfish, share the bike porn.[/QUOTE]

bike porn that is hilarious, i change the desktop wallpaper to different bikes i think getting every other day lol
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Old 10-16-08, 02:45 PM   #10
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I think i'm gonna go with the jamis ventura sport, a LBS has it and it is a beautiful bike and great price for entry level. I would buy used but my wife is buying this as a xmas gift and she doesn't want to buy me a used bike as a gift. Having someone explain the riding position and how the braking and shifting worked on a drop down bike really took all the intimidation away. I'm ready for the road bike.

bttw I went to another store that let me try out a cannondale caad9 7 and boy that was an incredible bike, unfortunately about twice the price.
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Old 10-17-08, 09:44 AM   #11
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Hey Jess ;

Congrats on the ride . I am in Ft Myers so your ride caught my attention . Where was your entry point , EverGlades is hhuuuuugeeee . Ive seen folks loop through Shark Valley to Homestead . Or Marco to the half way point on old 41 . by Clyde Butchers Studio (the orchid guy ). but that is a very very desolate ride.
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Old 10-17-08, 09:56 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by bautieri View Post
Great work jesspal, next stop 100km!!!

20 miles in 1 hour and 10 minutes is hauling a_s! I bet if you slow down and pace yourself you could knock out a 50 mile ride no sweat. Still, that was a great effort. When you first test ride a drop bar road bike it will be different, be careful not to over compensate your movements as the steering is much more twitchy. Like comparing a tank to a corvette. Good luck and let us know how the test rides go.

BTW, if you come home with a new bike we will require pictures. Don't be selfish, share the bike porn.
It's the Florida wind, when it's behind you you can fly.. Even on my Navigator I avg over 16 mph with the wind to my back. More like 11 mph when I turn around It's hard to pace yourself when it's that easy, and even harder to imagine how hard it's going to be when you turn around but it's all part of the learning process down here this time of year. One of my riding mentors calls the wind "Florida Hills"
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Old 10-17-08, 03:06 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by MFaust View Post
Hey Jess ;

Congrats on the ride . I am in Ft Myers so your ride caught my attention . Where was your entry point , EverGlades is hhuuuuugeeee . Ive seen folks loop through Shark Valley to Homestead . Or Marco to the half way point on old 41 . by Clyde Butchers Studio (the orchid guy ). but that is a very very desolate ride.
My ride was very far south, the entrance to flamingo. The road there is 38 miles. I parked at the gate, and rode in 20 miles and then the 20 back. Worst part was there was nothing at all to block the wind, so it just builds up stronger and stronger. It was a beautiful ride though, saw a dead python, deer, tons of birds and other cool stuff. It is pretty amazing the stuff that you see on bike, that you would normally fly right by in a car.

I did my ride in the everglades on asphalt with mtb tires, i changed to road tires yesterday and wow what a difference it makes.
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Old 10-17-08, 03:54 PM   #14
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Moral of the story= don't start you ride downwind or you will pay! We have lots of experience with wind here in NE and a little of it has a BIG effect. +1 on all the other advice re road bikes and drop bars!

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Old 10-17-08, 09:48 PM   #15
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Jesspal, I know exactly what you are going through. I had a Trek 7500 Hybrid with a flat bar, and I totally loved that bike, but I ride with a buddy that is on a road bike, and after he bought a high dollar road bike he loaned me his 2 year old Cannondale, and after a couple rides, I was totally hooked on road bikes.
You will get used to the drop bars right away. The only thing I did was change the seat to a more Clyde friendly seat.

Good Luck.
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