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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 05-16-11, 01:02 PM   #1
llmercll
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Finally got my Bike! Trek 7200 =)

Continued from this thread, maybe you remember me =p

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...guy?highlight=

I finally got it, and just got back from my first ride! At first I was really worried because the saddle was KILLING me. I quickly realized I was sitting too far up, and once I sat back on it some more, it got much better. Knowing that your body adapts after a few rides, and that bicycle shorts help, I may not even need a new saddle =p

Another thing that was bothering me were my knees at first. I'm 400lb so my knees are pretty bad when bent, and there was definitely some pain, but toward the end they felt stronger. I hope this is something that will improve as my legs get conditioned, and not get worse.

I believe the bike is adjusted well for me. My knees are slightly bent at full extension. The bike is huge! If it were any bigger it would be even too large for me. My "parts" touch when straddling it, but it's not too bad. I'm considering getting it professionally fit at my lbs though, just in case. It's a little hard for me to get on the saddle since it's high up, but I read on Sheldon brown site that it's normal if fit properly. I use the method of pushing off the right peddle to get started, and that works well, but I'm afraid my weight is going to snap the peddle, lol.

Either way, it was tough, but towards the end I already felt much stronger and was able to make up it a big hill! It was raining and my glasses fogged a lot, so it wasn't as enjoyable as I would have liked (and it's supposed to be raining all week here!) but it's guaranteed to clear up eventually =p

A few questions about the bike.

My brakes work great, but squeak. Any ideas as to why they're doing that and what I can do to fix it?

My other question is tire PSI. They say to inflate between 60-80, and since I'm big I go for 80, but I still definitely notice a little "flattening" when I'm riding. I heard road bikes get to 100-120, but my tires say 80. Is this ok? I shouldn't inflate it past 80 right?

thanks for reading that behemoth of a post!
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Old 05-16-11, 01:53 PM   #2
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Glad to hear you got your new bike. Hope to hear about your rides soon.


For the squeaking brakes, the pads on your brakes need to be "toed in." See here:

http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-...-brake-service

See part about "pad toeing."


Check here for tire inflation info:

http://www.bccclub.org/documents/Tireinflation.pdf
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Old 05-16-11, 01:55 PM   #3
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Also, make sure that you know how to shift your gears properly and use cadence. You should be spinning faster when peddaling rather than
putting too much pressure on your knees. If you are putting a lot of pressure on your knees, you need to be in a lower gear.

http://www.intownbicycles.com/how-to...bicycles-gears
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Old 05-16-11, 03:19 PM   #4
llmercll
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I noticed my max tire psi is 80. Can I safely go above that?

Last edited by llmercll; 05-16-11 at 06:33 PM.
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Old 05-16-11, 07:17 PM   #5
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Continued from this thread, maybe you remember me =p

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...guy?highlight=

I finally got it, and just got back from my first ride! At first I was really worried because the saddle was KILLING me. I quickly realized I was sitting too far up, and once I sat back on it some more, it got much better. Knowing that your body adapts after a few rides, and that bicycle shorts help, I may not even need a new saddle =p

Another thing that was bothering me were my knees at first. I'm 400lb so my knees are pretty bad when bent, and there was definitely some pain, but toward the end they felt stronger. I hope this is something that will improve as my legs get conditioned, and not get worse.

I believe the bike is adjusted well for me. My knees are slightly bent at full extension. The bike is huge! If it were any bigger it would be even too large for me. My "parts" touch when straddling it, but it's not too bad. I'm considering getting it professionally fit at my lbs though, just in case. It's a little hard for me to get on the saddle since it's high up, but I read on Sheldon brown site that it's normal if fit properly. I use the method of pushing off the right peddle to get started, and that works well, but I'm afraid my weight is going to snap the peddle, lol.

Either way, it was tough, but towards the end I already felt much stronger and was able to make up it a big hill! It was raining and my glasses fogged a lot, so it wasn't as enjoyable as I would have liked (and it's supposed to be raining all week here!) but it's guaranteed to clear up eventually =p

A few questions about the bike.

My brakes work great, but squeak. Any ideas as to why they're doing that and what I can do to fix it?

My other question is tire PSI. They say to inflate between 60-80, and since I'm big I go for 80, but I still definitely notice a little "flattening" when I'm riding. I heard road bikes get to 100-120, but my tires say 80. Is this ok? I shouldn't inflate it past 80 right?

thanks for reading that behemoth of a post!
Are you my twin. I swear you sound just like me.
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Old 05-16-11, 07:47 PM   #6
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Congrats on the purchase, llmercll ! I'm sure that you'll have a lot of fun with it. I loved my 7300, and put a lot of miles on it, including my first metric centuries.

Be careful, though...I don't think that the Bikeline extended service plan is transferable. If you need a good LBS, I can highly recommend Cycle Fit on 320 in Swarthmore. Those guys just plain know what they're doing
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Old 05-16-11, 07:51 PM   #7
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New riders usually spin the cranks @ 60 rpm. For most people 80-100 is better. Lower Rpm stress knees and the lactic acid system. Higher rpm stress Cardio system. I'd recomend working on cardio first. Use low gears and spin faster than you think you should.
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Old 05-16-11, 08:45 PM   #8
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Thanks a lot for the input guys! I actually discovered my seatpost is the lowest it can go, which is a little disappointing since I can't make small adjustments if need by.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rzfs-fK7csc

That's a video of me riding, does the seat height look ok? If anything it's very slightly too tall (which is again unfortunate since the seat is already at it's lowest height) right?

thanks a lot!
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Old 05-17-11, 04:29 AM   #9
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As I lost weight and my butt got smaller I had to raise my seat. When I wore size 58 pants my inseam was 30 now that I wear 36" inseam is 34.
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Old 05-17-11, 05:16 AM   #10
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Looking at your video, I do not think your seat is too high. You have a bend in your knee at the bottom of your pedal stroke. You might even be able to go a little higher.

You do not look like you are rocking your hips side to side as you pedal. If you do, then your seat is too high.

As for your tires, there is the whole engineer/lawyer issue. I run mine at the point where they deform as described in the link I sent above. My max is 65 psi and I run the front at 70 psi (5 psi above max) and the rear at 80 psi (15 psi above max). If you are concerned, run them at max psi. I am neither a lawyer or engineer (nor play either on tv.)

I run mine at the point I feel is the best psi compromise between rolling resistance and the right amount of squish for me.
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Old 05-17-11, 05:51 AM   #11
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On close inspection of the video, it looks like you have your foot
way forward on the pedals. The ball of your foot should be just
to the rear of the center.

This takes the strain off the knees and makes your legs just
a bit longer on the down stroke. Like the push you get from
the toes when running.

Try running on your heels sometime and you will get
the message.

As in:



You can also hit the back of the front tire with
your foot if it is too far forward. This is not good!

Last edited by BHOFM; 05-17-11 at 05:57 AM.
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Old 05-17-11, 11:19 AM   #12
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Thanks a lot BHOFM. It feels better when I use the ball of my foot. It gives me a little more bend too, which I was afraid I wasn't getting enough of when fully extended.

It's tough right now because it's raining here, and will be all week! My feet keep slipping off the peddles =(

Either way, I just got back from my third ride and I'm already doing considerably better. Yesterday I stayed in the driveway area, today I hit the road (still keeping it small though), and although it was still painful in my butt and now hands, my knees did better (except when going uphill) and I felt that burst of strength that I used to get when I jogged and haven't felt in years. Good stuff =)

It's safe to assume I will only get more comfortable with the saddle right? It felt a little better today, even though my butt is bruised.
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Old 05-17-11, 12:34 PM   #13
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It's safe to assume I will only get more comfortable with the saddle right? It felt a little better today, even though my butt is bruised.
Definitely. If you haven't been riding very long, give your butt at least a week or two to get used to the feel of being on a saddle for an extended period. If you notice significant pain after a couple weeks, it's probably time to check out other saddle options.
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Old 05-18-11, 09:01 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by BHOFM View Post
On close inspection of the video, it looks like you have your foot
way forward on the pedals. The ball of your foot should be just
to the rear of the center.

This takes the strain off the knees and makes your legs just
a bit longer on the down stroke. Like the push you get from
the toes when running.

Try running on your heels sometime and you will get
the message.

As in:



You can also hit the back of the front tire with
your foot if it is too far forward. This is not good!
I disagree with this advice. Many studies show pedaling with the foot in the middle of the pedal is more efficient. I will cite as an example of when you do a squat, you don't push up from your toes, you push up from the heels. Regarding running, there is nothing wrong with being a "heel striker" look at modern footwear, look at how much padding is on that part of the shoe. In the case of running you will absolutely be faster having a flat to slightly toe striking pattern when doing distance running, but you can run perfectly fine and healthy as a heel striker and more people get hurt running on their toes from straining their calf muscles.

regarding tires, what size tires are on the bike, if your 400lbs and only running 80psi, I hope you have 700x35 tires on there. one thing that sets apart cheapo tires from mroe expensive ones are the ability to take higher pressures. AS a 250lb rider, I've had to be careful when buying road bike tires because I really need at least 125psi in the rear wheel of my 700x25c tire yet many tires that size are only rated to 100ish. you can go over it a little but generally i won't inflate more than 5-10% past the rated amount.
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Old 05-18-11, 11:12 PM   #15
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I disagree with this advice. Many studies show pedaling with the foot in the middle of the pedal is more efficient. I will cite as an example of when you do a squat, you don't push up from your toes, you push up from the heels. Regarding running, there is nothing wrong with being a "heel striker" look at modern footwear, look at how much padding is on that part of the shoe. In the case of running you will absolutely be faster having a flat to slightly toe striking pattern when doing distance running, but you can run perfectly fine and healthy as a heel striker and more people get hurt running on their toes from straining their calf muscles.

regarding tires, what size tires are on the bike, if your 400lbs and only running 80psi, I hope you have 700x35 tires on there. one thing that sets apart cheapo tires from mroe expensive ones are the ability to take higher pressures. AS a 250lb rider, I've had to be careful when buying road bike tires because I really need at least 125psi in the rear wheel of my 700x25c tire yet many tires that size are only rated to 100ish. you can go over it a little but generally i won't inflate more than 5-10% past the rated amount.
You push with your heals with squatting because if your pushing with the toes your leaning too far forward, and this puts a lot of the weight onto your spine. Biking and squatting are very different, and by using your toes you are able to get your calves more involved in cycling. This is great because the calves are not only great aerobically, they are the muscles with the highest mechanical advantage due to the type of lever arm the possess (and the reason why you can push huge amounts of weight with a calf raise for example).

Back to the OP, I think you have a very great attitude and you are a very inspiring guy. Keep up the great work. And yes, your butt will get used to it with time, just gradually increase and before you know it, your butt will be bike fit
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Old 05-19-11, 05:57 AM   #16
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Continued from this thread, maybe you remember me =p

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...guy?highlight=

I finally got it, and just got back from my first ride! At first I was really worried because the saddle was KILLING me.
As I recall Trek saddles are actually classified by the Defense Department as "Enhanced Interrogation Devices". I replaced mine after confessing I was OBL's secret love-child.
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Old 05-19-11, 02:47 PM   #17
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Back to the OP, I think you have a very great attitude and you are a very inspiring guy. Keep up the great work. And yes, your butt will get used to it with time, just gradually increase and before you know it, your butt will be bike fit
thanks a lot for that! =)

I actually rode for my fourth time today, and my butt is feeling great. I can't believe I'm saying this but it was actually kind of comfortable =p

Now my endurance is another thing altogether. 30 minutes of straight riding today KILLED ME. My legs and "cardio" system were shot. I know this is something that will improve in time, and although really hard on me during the biking, afterwards I feel great. I haven't felt as "relaxed" as I do now in years.

I find myself putting a lot of weight on my handlebars, and more specifically, the bottom part on my palm, near the wrist. Any tips on what can help that? gloves or raising the bars a bit perhaps?

thanks!
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Old 05-19-11, 03:54 PM   #18
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thanks a lot for that! =)

I actually rode for my fourth time today, and my butt is feeling great. I can't believe I'm saying this but it was actually kind of comfortable =p

Now my endurance is another thing altogether. 30 minutes of straight riding today KILLED ME. My legs and "cardio" system were shot. I know this is something that will improve in time, and although really hard on me during the biking, afterwards I feel great. I haven't felt as "relaxed" as I do now in years.

I find myself putting a lot of weight on my handlebars, and more specifically, the bottom part on my palm, near the wrist. Any tips on what can help that? gloves or raising the bars a bit perhaps?

thanks!
I know its easier said than done, but try using your "core" to help hold your body up, and be light on the bars... This, too, will improve ovr time. All this, fo course, after you're sure your bike is fit to you properly.

Oh, and BTW, thanks for sharing--posts like yuors are very inspirational.
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Old 05-19-11, 07:36 PM   #19
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Now my endurance is another thing altogether. 30 minutes of straight riding today KILLED ME. My legs and "cardio" system were shot. I know this is something that will improve in time, and although really hard on me during the biking, afterwards I feel great. I haven't felt as "relaxed" as I do now in years.
I think you are going to find that it will go from a 'near death experience' to 'tolerable' before you know it. And don't freak out if your weight fluctuates a bit either, I actually gained weight two weeks ago when I started it up, but my waistline went down at the same time.

Quote:
I find myself putting a lot of weight on my handlebars, and more specifically, the bottom part on my palm, near the wrist. Any tips on what can help that? gloves or raising the bars a bit perhaps?
thanks!
Get the gloves with the padding or gel or something before your next ride. I had numb/tingly hands for days after I started going on longer rides (hour or so) because I pinched a nerve in my hands..right where you are putting pressure. Oh and make sure you don't lock your elbows, I made that mistake too and was corrected by a very wise person on here.
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Old 05-19-11, 07:57 PM   #20
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You push with your heals with squatting because if your pushing with the toes your leaning too far forward, and this puts a lot of the weight onto your spine. Biking and squatting are very different, and by using your toes you are able to get your calves more involved in cycling. This is great because the calves are not only great aerobically, they are the muscles with the highest mechanical advantage due to the type of lever arm the possess (and the reason why you can push huge amounts of weight with a calf raise for example).

Back to the OP, I think you have a very great attitude and you are a very inspiring guy. Keep up the great work. And yes, your butt will get used to it with time, just gradually increase and before you know it, your butt will be bike fit
you push with your heels squatting because that is where your tibia connects to your foot. Biking and squatting are similar in that they both do hip extension. I do agree with you that calf muscles are definately endurance based and well suited to aerobic based endeavors however, the other leg muscles easily are capable of putting out so much more power.

FWIW, I am citing a Joe Friel blog post where he cited some research about cyclists moving their cleats much further back on their shoes. I'm not talking to the max amount htat the clear allows, I'm talking about guys drilling new holes in their cycling shoes to mount the cleat in the middle of the foot. IT makes sense to me because it's not saying push with heels like a squat but it's also not saying push down from the balls of the feet. I think placement of the pedals in the middle of the foot may actually be a happy medium between letting the calf muscles do their aerobic thing and the glutes hams and quads do their power thing.
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Old 05-19-11, 09:42 PM   #21
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Get the gloves with the padding or gel or something before your next ride.
+1. I found that riding was much easier on my hands and wrists after I got padded gloves, it was significantly improved. I may still have the bars raised, but it's much less bothersome now.
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Old 05-20-11, 03:17 PM   #22
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Yeah I just got back from day 5 (don't worry I won't be posting after every single bike ride, lol) and noticed my overall body "strength" was much better. I wasn't nearly as "dead" feeling when I got back and was able to get a much better cardio workout as well.

I did also notice I gained a few pounds. Like others have said though, it's likely muscle =)

I had a BAD cramp in my calf last night that actually woke me, and is still sore today. I read a lot of the times it has to do with mineral balance and potassium, I'm wondering if I sweat too much and didn't restore my electrolytes properly. Thankfully it didn't effect my riding today, but I need to look that up. Too bad Gatorade is expensive =p

And finally, the lower hands/wrist are still killing me. I haven't gotten gloves yet, I was hoping I wouldn't need to for my 30-60 minute rides, but I just might. I was out for 40 minutes total today btw, 10 more than yesterday =)

So I need to look into getting a pair of gloves, adjusting my handlebars to be a bit higher which i have no idea how to do, and make sure I'm replenishing myself correctly after my rides.

thanks everyone!

Last edited by llmercll; 05-20-11 at 04:10 PM.
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Old 05-20-11, 04:36 PM   #23
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If you are putting too much pressure on your hands, you may need to move the seat back slightly.
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Old 05-20-11, 05:31 PM   #24
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If you are putting too much pressure on your hands, you may need to move the seat back slightly.
+1 to this. And look for a set of bar ends that will allow you to move your hands around some.

I went to college at Widener, and used to live in Swarthmore, so I'm interested in knowing what routes you're riding. A lot of roads in that area aren't real bike friendly.
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Old 05-21-11, 01:15 PM   #25
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If you are putting too much pressure on your hands, you may need to move the seat back slightly.
thanks I will try that.

@zoste - I live in chester ny, and right now am just riding up and down the main road in my town house complex. It's still a very small, very close road as I don't feel comfortable venturing out just yet.
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