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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 04-25-09, 12:40 AM   #1
Breadpudding
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Do I need to look at bigger stuff?

So I hadn't even thought about the 'bigger cyclist' stuff when I decided to get back into biking. I won't bore you with the back story unless you want to read it. (Then Click Here)

I'm about 215lbs right now. I use to ride when I was younger and was actually heavier than I am now, but shorter. I'm going to be riding a Trek 6000 to start (when its back from the shop). To prepare I've been riding at the gym on the stationary bikes for about 30-40 minutes at a time and have noticed that my butt starts to hurt on those stiff seats. Then I saw this Clydesdale / Athena forum and it clicked... am I a 'bigger' rider, am I going to have to look into bigger gear or is this just something I'm gonna have to figure out for myself by trial and error?

The reason I ask is because sooner or later I'm going to buy a road bike also to train for doing the Seattle-to-Portland marathon and I've just been reading so much on fit of the bike and things I haven't thought about...

I know I rambled, so if you can decipher anything out of my long post... please comment or give me some feedback.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-25-09, 01:27 AM   #2
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Then I saw this Clydesdale / Athena forum and it clicked... am I a 'bigger' rider, am I going to have to look into bigger gear or is this just something I'm gonna have to figure out for myself by trial and error?
What do you mean by 'bigger gear'? Clothing? Bike size? Bike components?

Since I'm not really sure what you're asking, I'll say that you need clothing that fits and a bike of the appropriate size. At 215lbs you're not that heavy, so I wouldn't worry too much about durability of wheels and other components.
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Old 04-25-09, 01:37 AM   #3
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What do you mean by 'bigger gear'? Clothing? Bike size? Bike components?

Since I'm not really sure what you're asking, I'll say that you need clothing that fits and a bike of the appropriate size. At 215lbs you're not that heavy, so I wouldn't worry too much about durability of wheels and other components.
Yeah I should have been more specific sorry. I meant gear for the bike itself. Like seats and other components.
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Old 04-25-09, 02:08 AM   #4
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Yeah I should have been more specific sorry. I meant gear for the bike itself. Like seats and other components.
I wouldn't worry too much about components. Unless you're a 215lb power-lifter, you're probably unlikely to break anything. I started riding again when I hit 210lbs and didn't have any problems.

Saddles are a very... personal... component. You and I could be the exact same size and you might hate a saddle that I love. That's one of the things you might have to figure out for yourself, though I'm sure you can get suggestions here that will help you narrow down your search.

I once tried an expensive Specialized Toupe Gel saddle. Everybody raves about how great they are, they come in three different widths, and Specialized shops have an Ass-o-meter measuring device to tell you which width to buy. I absolutely hated it! It was hard as a rock and gave me saddle sores after only 20 miles. Worst saddle I've ever used... Needless to say, I returned it for a refund. Ended up with a Selle SMP Strike Extra saddle on my road bike. It's about 1/3rd the price of every other saddle they make and quite heavy (400g), but with a decent pair of cycling shorts I can ride it all day long.

Funny thing: I recently bought a Specialized mountain bike that came with their Phenom saddle. It looks every bit as uncomfortable as the Toupe Gel and, according to the Ass-o-meter, was too narrow for my butt. Guess what? I'm loving it so far!
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Old 04-26-09, 10:48 AM   #5
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I would agree -- I'm in the 220 lb. range, and ride several different road and mountain bikes regularly. I don't break things much more than anyone else. The only concession would be slightly wider tires than usual (if you're on a road bike), to help avoid pinch flats. I do flat maybe six or seven times more often than my skinny girlfriend, but I think that comes with the territory (also riding off every curb and obstacle I can find doesn't help).

Once you begin riding regularly, check out a Brooks saddle -- they're old-fashioned leather saddles that mold to your hipbones over an extended break-in period. They may not feel great at first (or they may), but they are a pretty widely loved alternative to the modern plastic saddles every bike comes with.
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Old 04-26-09, 11:25 AM   #6
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215 isn't big unless your 5'2".
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Old 04-26-09, 04:33 PM   #7
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For me, riding a stationary bike or a spinning bike is a lot different (from a comfort standpoint) than my road bike. You can coast, get out of the saddle and have a cool breeze outside which makes it a much more enjoyable experience. Any saddle that fits your sit bones well and a good overall bike fit will be all you need...
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