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  1. #1
    Neil_B
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    The Virtual Historian

    Sunday I visited a different gym to try it out. They had some stationary bikes by Expresso, which featured a computer screen in front of the rider displaying different bike paths. I thought, "this is silly, so let's try it for a minute." So I climbed onto the saddle, chose the "Evening Bliss" ride, and began pedaling.

    My stats tell the rest of the story:

    Average speed 13.5 MPH
    Heart rate - Average 120, max 156
    Power - Average 110 watts, max 399
    total miles:7.43

    It was amazing. I generally don't perspire much while riding outside, but here I was dripping sweat. As I came up to the virtual riders, I pedaled faster to get around them. I may have even said, "on your left" once or twice.

    Once "Evening Bliss" was complete, I chose "Fruitdale", which sets the bike path along a California beach. Again I revved up what little motor I have. And again I found my long-dormant competitive instincts coming out. As I passed a large virtual cyclist, I turned and asked, "where's Gina?"

    I stopped after the 7.43 miles because I was tired, and the saddle was uncomfortable - I wasn't wearing bike shorts. Also, as usual, the bike's Q-factor was too narrow for my feet. As I climbed off the bike I noticed my t shirt was very damp.

    Some points that came out from this experience:

    1. I'm very out of shape, even by my standards.
    2. I have a competitive streak I need to exercise more.
    3. If I can find the right bike fit, or the right bike, there's nothing I can't do.
    4. When I ride, I need to push myself harder. On tour and commuting I don't 'drop the hammer', because I'm sightseeing and because, in the case of commuting, my work doesn't have shower facilities. So as I try to get back in shape this riding season I need to work on sprints and other drills to make me a faster cyclist.

  2. #2
    Downtown Spanky Brown bautieri's Avatar
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    Sounds like a fun diversion to help slog out the miles on stationary equipment. So far the best my gym has to offer is a bank of televisions set to Fox News and CNN. It's really hard to push that last mile while watching the O'Reily factor.

    Also, I too sweat like a wh_re in church at the gym.

  3. #3
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    Spin classes. If your gym has them, I'd recommend them. I enjoyed it so much that I now lead/teach classes at my gym. You will push yourself to new limits in these classes.

  4. #4
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snapperhead View Post
    Spin classes. If your gym has them, I'd recommend them. I enjoyed it so much that I now lead/teach classes at my gym. You will push yourself to new limits in these classes.
    Spin classes and me have been a marriage made in heck. Last time I was in one I fell off the bike. Between that and being the answer man for back trouble, I've avoided them since.

    Besides, I'd need to add extenders to the pedals every time I use a spin bike. I'll need to keep a pedal wrench in my gym bag.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Historian View Post
    Spin classes and me have been a marriage made in heck. Last time I was in one I fell off the bike. Between that and being the answer man for back trouble, I've avoided them since.

    Besides, I'd need to add extenders to the pedals every time I use a spin bike. I'll need to keep a pedal wrench in my gym bag.
    Good points. I certianly wouldn't recommend them for people who already have knee and/or back problems. And the bikes are not all that adjustable.

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