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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 08-27-09, 08:40 PM   #1
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Stem advice / Glove advice.

I recently adjusted my seat height and position forward. My rides now average 30 miles I needed to get my butt over the saddle some more. My times have improved and I feel the rides in my thighs rather than my calves. However I feel a bit cramped up front. My shoulder tend to get a bit sore and Numb hands. I feel like i'm Pressing my weight forward int my shoulders and hands. I'm 5'9" 260lbs of the longer torso variety. My stem is a 100mm bontrager. Should I get a longer stem or should I just bite the bullet and get a bike fit?

Also I've been using Trek Gloves. They have gel pads. Fairly comfy but Gel shifts quickly and they fall apart quickly. Can anyone recommend a glove thats comfy and durable.

Last edited by Bigboxeraf; 08-27-09 at 08:48 PM.
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Old 08-27-09, 08:56 PM   #2
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Get a bike fit. Your saddle should be positioned so that, at least in part, you are balanced over the cranks. You ought not be sliding either forward or back. That will be taken care of by a competent fitter. They'll also find you the right length stem. It's possible also that your cables/housing will be too short for a longer stem, so they may need to be replaced too.

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Old 08-28-09, 11:53 AM   #3
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At the most basic:

Saddle height can be determined by aligning your cranks with your seat tube and putting your heel on the pedal. You should be just at full extension while seated.

Saddle fore/aft adjustment (and this is a widely argued point) can be determined with K.O.P.S. or Knee Over Pedal Spindle. With your foot in a neutral position and the crank at a 3 o'clock position, the front of your knee below the kneecap should be in line with the spindle of the pedal. Optimally, your knee will make at close to a straight up/down motion as possible through the crank rotation.

Bar adjustment depends on the rider, but you want to support your upper body with your core, not your arms. A 45 degree torso angle is a good starting point to play with bar adjustments. My personal feeling is that you should be able to lift yourself from the drops to the tops of the bars, both hands at once, without having to shove/boost yourself to keep from falling forward.

If you get a professional fit, remember that you'll have to go back a few times as your fitness level progresses. Changes in weight, core strength, etc. will affect bike fit. My fitting was done at 240 pounds, things were a bit off when I went up to 255. They're a bit off again now that I'm around 235; but I find that I can usually determine the minor adjustment which needs to be made.
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Old 08-28-09, 12:22 PM   #4
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I would get fitted. Having someone competent (Not all are) do it helps out a great deal. In some cases you may have to go back a couple times for minor adjustments. My wife had to go back twice because of pain/numbness.

For gloves, I really like Specialized BG Gel Gloves. I've put a couple thousand miles on mine. Two tiny stickers(like iron on patches) came off, but the cloth, synthetic suede or whatever it is and the gel has held up great. I'll be able to put another thousand miles on them. The gel areas on these are like tiny raised pillows in specific areas. The gel doesn't shift at all.

My wife started out with Trek gloves which were comfortable, but fell apart in 2-3 months. She now likes Pearl Izumi Gel gloves.
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Old 08-28-09, 12:52 PM   #5
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Trek Gloves are awful. I'm going to go to the shop and see if they can help me out with a fitting. Thanks for all the advice.
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Old 08-28-09, 01:06 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by WhiskeySmack View Post

For gloves, I really like Specialized BG Gel Gloves.

Far better than any other brand that I have used.
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