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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 05-25-11, 02:38 AM   #1
Coby
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I need help getting an idea of what kind of bike I need.

Okay, so I just joined here to ask for some help on finding a bike.

I'm Coby, I'm 20yo, and live in Utah. I want to get into cycling to help me lose some weight. I'm in dire need of some cardio and regular exercise. I'm overweight, out of shape and lazy. But I know that I need to make some lifestyle changes and one thing I need to do is start exercising regularly. So I want to start cycling soon, but first I need a bike. I have all the time in the world right now, so I think it would be wise for me to start riding a bike daily for extended distances.

I really know nothing about road bikes or road cycling, so Id appreciate it if your replies are easy for a new person such as myself to understand.

A few of the questions I have are:

How much would I need to spend on a bike so I can just get cycling?
What are some specific things I need to look for in a bike?
What are some good brands/models to look into?
What is the regular maintenance needed for a cycling bike?
Are there any fundamental cycling things I should learn at first?
What other equipment/gear would you recommend?

I'll for sure have some more questions as I start reading about this more, but that's it for now.

Thanks
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Old 05-25-11, 08:11 AM   #2
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Welcome!

How much to spend depends on your budget, what you want in the bike, and how vain you are.

In a bike, look for a sturdy wheelset and gearing appropriate for your riding terrain. Living in UT, you may want to start out with a triple chainring, meaning there are 3 chainrings at the pedals, giving you a wider range of gears including the smallest ring to climb hills.

Brands/models, lots to choose from. Do you want a drop bar road bike, a flat bar road hybrid, a flat bar bike with larger tires, or a mountain bike? Where do you plan on riding, on the roads or on the trails?

If the bike is set up properly, there is not a great deal of maintenance. Keep air in the tires, learn how to fix a flat tire, lube the chain every so often, keep things clean.

If you know how to ride a bike, you will be fine. Just get started, and you will learn what questions to ask and answer some of them yourself.

Equipment to get, helmet, gloves are nice, and enough tools to change a flat on the road. Tube, tire levers, pump or CO2, and multi tool. Oh, and water bottles or hydration pack. Cycling clothes aren't necessary to get started, but you can get them.

I started riding after Christmas one year, when I was embarrassed that the pants my wife bought me wouldn't fit. I had finally had enough. I got my 10 year old Wal-Mart mountain bike down from the garage ceiling, put air in the tires, and went riding in my basketball shorts and a t-shirt. First ride was about 3 miles.

I rode that mountain bike for about 6 weeks. It had friction shifters, and it wouldn't shift into the largest or smallest cog in the back, I had no idea how to adjust anything on it. But I rode it anyway, using what gears worked. Then spokes started to break, the rims were getting pretty wobbly so that using the brakes (which didn't work very good) was not comfortable. I went to the bike shop, thinking I could buy a couple of spokes and fix things up, but found out there was much more bent/broken than I thought.

So I came home with this bike. This picture is after I put narrower tires on it, bar ends and a saddle bag.



It cost me about $400, it worked out great for me. Got me hooked on cycling, I put a lot of miles on that hybrid.
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Old 05-25-11, 08:16 AM   #3
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Here is some reading for you.
http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...-Answered-Here
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Old 05-25-11, 09:19 AM   #4
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It first depends on exactly what type of riding you do. It sounds like you are leaning more towards a road bike. I just got my first road bike, and it was not a very fast process. You should first start by visiting a local bike store and being fitted for a bike. Honestly, I think it is best to get your first bike from a local store rather than ordering online - just for the service you will need just getting started (but this is not the cheapest way to go). You can save some money online, but you will be lacking the service, and probably still end up paying a LBS for some adjustments, or assembly and tunings.

It is hard to reccomend specific brands. I was dead set on one brand that I thought looked the best, and everyone kept suggesting. But after trying it and several other brands it did not feel as good for me as one of the other ones. Once you get an idea of what size you need, ride as many as you can in your price range and decide which one you like the best - they all will feel a little different. You said you are overweight, so I would pay attention to what wheels come on which bikes and talk to the bike store about concerns for weight on different wheels - they may offer you an upgrade on some more sturdy wheels for a good price. There are several well known brands - Trek, Cannondale, Specialized...... - not that they are any better than others, however, they will have little better resale value than some of your lesser known brands - which is something I took into consideration being new to this and not knowing if it was something I would stick with. Fortunately I am now obsessed, and can't imagine selling my bike.

Here are some of the items I bought to go along with it: Clipless pedals and shoes, a couple pairs of bike shorts or bibs (I know you may say you don't want to wear the skin tight shorts - you can wear shorts over them, but your butt and sensitive areas will feel much better), a helmet, a good pump with a gauge on it (remember you will be putting 100-120 psi in these tires), a spare tube or two, tire levers, an emerngency CO2 pump, a seat bag, a drink bottle and cage. You don't have to have all of this, but you definitely need to factor the cost of all of the extras into your budget to buy.

Last edited by kstephens; 05-25-11 at 09:22 AM.
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Old 05-25-11, 10:18 AM   #5
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Where in Utah do you live? Are you in a city, or out near the trails somewhere?
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Old 05-31-11, 10:50 PM   #6
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Thanks for the replies guys. I'll try to answer all your questions here.

Since I've decided that losing weight and getting in shape is priority #1, I've set my budget at $1100. Hopefully that can get me everything I need.

Although I'd like to do mountain-biking right now, there just aren't many trails for it in my area. So I just want a road bike to start out with, then as I lose some weight and get stronger I'll think about a mountain bike.

I see you mention to look into the wheels to make sure they're up to the task, but what do I need to look for?

I assume that in my price range used is the best way to go. Is there anything specific I need to look for when buying a bike used? Can you recommend any online places where I can look for bikes used?

Thanks,
Coby
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Old 06-01-11, 09:12 AM   #7
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As someone who's lost almost 90lbs in the past 4 months, let me share one tip with you: it's all about diet. Really, unless you're training for the olympics, you cannot out-train a bad diet.
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Old 06-01-11, 09:38 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jedrek View Post
As someone who's lost almost 90lbs in the past 4 months, let me share one tip with you: it's all about diet. Really, unless you're training for the olympics, you cannot out-train a bad diet.
To add to this. Exercise keeps your metabolism from going down too far. It's also an active measure (You're doing something) Where as not eating as much is passive. Eventually (for me 8 months) the exercise is a reward in and of itself.
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Old 06-01-11, 10:48 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coby View Post
Thanks for the replies guys. I'll try to answer all your questions here.

Since I've decided that losing weight and getting in shape is priority #1, I've set my budget at $1100. Hopefully that can get me everything I need.

Although I'd like to do mountain-biking right now, there just aren't many trails for it in my area. So I just want a road bike to start out with, then as I lose some weight and get stronger I'll think about a mountain bike.

I see you mention to look into the wheels to make sure they're up to the task, but what do I need to look for?

I assume that in my price range used is the best way to go. Is there anything specific I need to look for when buying a bike used? Can you recommend any online places where I can look for bikes used?

Thanks,
Coby
Hi Coby, I think we could better answer some of your questions if you give us an idea of just how heavy you are. A 250lb rider doesn't "need" the same stuff as a 350lb rider. I say "need" because a lot of things aren't truly necessary, but may add to your comfort. Being 20, you can deal with discomfort.

I would reccomend a cyclocross bike. They are like stout road bikes, and have knobbie tires in case you do see a trail you want to go ride down. It's not a mountain bike, don't treat it like one. They also typically have a stronger wheelset than a comparably priced road bike. Around 1100 bucks...look at a Specialized Tricross: http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bc/...=Path%2FGravel I have the sport version, a 2009, and it's been a great bike. Add slick tires and you got a competent roadie/commuter.

I would never buy a used cyclocross bike because you run a great risk of them having the snot beaten out of them. I tend not to reccomend a used bike to a novice because they really are a crapshoot...until you know exactly what you are looking for. Same deal with buying online, until you know your size and recognize the differences in geometry, it's a gamble.

Bau
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Old 06-01-11, 11:00 AM   #10
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Quote:
Since I've decided that losing weight and getting in shape is priority #1, I've set my budget at $1100. Hopefully that can get me everything I need.
Quote:
I assume that in my price range used is the best way to go.
Actually, there a LOT of very good high quality bikes that you can get BRAND NEW from your LBS way below that price point. You'd even have money left over for extra gear like, helmet, gloves, etc. Like kstephens pointed out, as a newbie, its best if you went to your LBS and got fitted for the right bike. They would also be able to answer all of your questions and do any adjustments you need. With a used bike the owner may or may not know anything about the bike and definitely wouldn't be able to give you the customer service you need and deserve. With your LBS you become a customer (hopefully) for life.

MrsN
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Old 06-01-11, 11:53 AM   #11
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I' d second cyclocross bikes as a good all rounder. Take a look at the surly cross-check as it is more versatile than most and can handle some trails. Touring bikes also make good all round bikes and tend to have be more clyde friendly from the start. Jamis bikes are pretty good bang for the buck. Find a good dealer and try it multiple times before you buy, fit is hugely important. If you're just starting out with drop bars, set them higher than the saddle and don't let them set up a low drop position initially. You can lower a stem but it's harder to fix a steerer tube that is cut too low.

But make sure you feel comfortable with what the shop is telling you. If not, go somewhere you are comfortable. A good shop will help with so many things, but there are many shops that can't or won't be helpful. In my area, there are six shops, only one gets my repeat business. The good ones try to build a longterm relationship with you. Rei tends to carry or be able to order some decent bikes, but their service departments often leave something to be desired.

Look into cycling groups in your area or your state gov webpage, they'll probably. Have info on your local laws, routes to ride, maybe even basic cycling skills classes.

As far as gear goes, start with the bike and a water bottle. You don't need Lycra and not right away if you decide you do want it. I favor wool, some ride in lycra, some in everyday clothes. See what works for you. If you decide to ride to work or school you'll have different needs than if you ride recreationally. So ride and see how you want to ride before investing in stuff you may or may not use.
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Old 06-01-11, 11:57 AM   #12
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I think the 1100 was the total budget. . for everything.

But +1 on the cross bike recommendation. That's what I have and darned if it's not fun fun fun fun.
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Old 06-01-11, 12:31 PM   #13
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I dont know if this will help, but i took a quick ride on a Giant Rapid 3 last night and the thing is sweeeeeet. its like a road bike with a bit more upright position than one, and a bit more road bike position than a hybrid/comfort bike.

I came home from the LBS looking for stuff to sell on craigslist to fund the price tag.
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Old 06-01-11, 12:33 PM   #14
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Since you are just starting out I would not set your budget anywhere near the $1100 mark. (That is taking into account that part of that $1100 will go toward helmet/pump/tools etc.) Your first bike is kind of a crapshoot. You may fall in love with it, you may end up hating it. At this point you don't know enough to know what you don't know. You don't want to spend too much on specialized bike and very quickly find out that it doesn't do what you find you really like doing the most. However, the opposite is also true--if you spend next to nothing on a department store junk bike you run the risk of it being such a pain to ride that it sours you on the whole idea.

Don't worry about brands--the name on the bike means next to nothing. It's all about the components. (Of course, a reputable brand is going to use better components vs a department store bike so I suppose the brand does mean something. . .) At our sizes the wheels are THE MOST IMPORTANT THING. A quick rule of thumb is more spokes are better. We are kinda like large breasted women trying to wear tiny, frilly, lacy brassieres--less spokes may be sexy but we need firm support!

I think you could find a good hybrid or cyclocross bike somewhere in the $500 range and ride it for a while. You will discover things that you either like or don't like about it. During this period of time start saving for your next bike. (Like I said earlier, it is quite possible that you will love your first bike never part with it. I know I did)

Craigslist is also a good resource since used bikes can be had for a fraction of their new price. There are always great bikes available on CL. (Assuming you are somewhere close enough to one of the Craigslist cities to make The List a possibility.) You can always come on here and ask if a CL find is a good deal or not.

So, to bring this novella to a close: 1) Find a decent hybrid or cyclocross bike, get a helmet, a good pump, some basic tools, a seat pack with extra tubes and some way to pump them up. 2) Watch some YouTube videos so you know how to change your tubes and do basic adjustments. 3) Ride that bad boy like you stole it!

Since you are new here there is one more thing you need to know: we are going to be needing some pictures when you get the new bike. It's just how things are done here!
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Old 06-01-11, 01:00 PM   #15
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If you're doing this to get in shape, speed isn't everything. A touring type road bike that you can easily add a rear rack and/or panniers to, will provide a lot of flexibility. At some point you may find yourself wanting to ride to the grocery store or some other place 10 or 20 miles away and you may find panniers useful. You might find a friend to go on an overnight ride with, camping. Even bringing a tent is reasonable with a rack and panniers. You'll also get good low gearing with a touring type bike, which is a huge help for anyone overweight and working at getting into shape. A cross bike may also be a great idea. Some come ready for racks but most don't have braze ons for front racks. Just something to consider.
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Old 06-01-11, 01:10 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coby View Post
Although I'd like to do mountain-biking right now, there just aren't many trails for it in my area. So I just want a road bike to start out with, then as I lose some weight and get stronger I'll think about a mountain bike.
It sounds like a cyclocross bike might be right for you. Think of it as a heavy, but strong road bike.
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Old 06-01-11, 01:19 PM   #17
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Coby, Congrats on you lifestyle change decision.

A 'blank sheet' suggestion is really harder because there are so many critical variables such as your weight and fit of the bike itself (bikes are kind of like shoes, a real PIA if the size isn't correct). If you're less than 300 lbs. I suggest a hybrid with 36 spoke 700c wheels, over 300 lbs. and I suggest something with 36 spoke 26" wheels (stronger).

Go to a bike shop to find the correct size of bicycle, there should be good ones in the $600 range. You'll NEED a helmet and WANT a saddle bag, tire tools, frame mounted air pump, tire repair patches and a spare tube. Brands of bicycle aren't too important at this point, Trek, Specialized, Cannondale and Giant are perhaps the most popular with many others equally well built.

HTH, Brad
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Old 06-01-11, 01:48 PM   #18
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A good bike shop is more important than a particular brand.
Any affordable bike has a strong enough frame but the weak point are the wheels. Depending on your weight you may need to pick with care. Generally, fancy, modern low-spoke wheels dont have the strength, reliability and repairability of std wheels.
There is more to cycling than "training" and "fitness programs". If you incorporate riding into your everyday transportation you will excercise more without thinking. A useful everyday bike needs useful features such as rack and fender eyelets, sufficient tyre clearance and low-enough gears.

If you can find a used Hybrid style bike in reasonable condition, you can start riding for a much lower startup cost and you will gain some experience and knowledge if you decide to get a road racer. Lots of sport riders find 2 bikes useful, one for errands and one for training and events.
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Old 06-01-11, 02:40 PM   #19
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Firstly, thanks for the replies everyone. I appreciate your help.


Quote:
Originally Posted by jedrek View Post
As someone who's lost almost 90lbs in the past 4 months, let me share one tip with you: it's all about diet. Really, unless you're training for the olympics, you cannot out-train a bad diet.
Yeah, that's going to be difficult but I need to do it. I plan on coupling cycling with a good diet and weight training. My end goal would be ~90lbs.

How have you lost all that so fast? I bet that feels absolutely amazing.



Quote:
Originally Posted by bautieri View Post
Hi Coby, I think we could better answer some of your questions if you give us an idea of just how heavy you are. A 250lb rider doesn't "need" the same stuff as a 350lb rider. I say "need" because a lot of things aren't truly necessary, but may add to your comfort. Being 20, you can deal with discomfort.

I would reccomend a cyclocross bike. They are like stout road bikes, and have knobbie tires in case you do see a trail you want to go ride down. It's not a mountain bike, don't treat it like one. They also typically have a stronger wheelset than a comparably priced road bike. Around 1100 bucks...look at a Specialized Tricross: http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bc/...=Path%2FGravel I have the sport version, a 2009, and it's been a great bike. Add slick tires and you got a competent roadie/commuter.

I would never buy a used cyclocross bike because you run a great risk of them having the snot beaten out of them. I tend not to reccomend a used bike to a novice because they really are a crapshoot...until you know exactly what you are looking for. Same deal with buying online, until you know your size and recognize the differences in geometry, it's a gamble.

Bau
I'm about 290lbs right now. I would like to weigh around 200lbs after some hard work and commitment.

I'll look into those Cyclocross bikes. I'll call some local shops and see what they have. In general they are pretty strong and could support me?



Quote:
Originally Posted by MrsNetNut404 View Post
Actually, there a LOT of very good high quality bikes that you can get BRAND NEW from your LBS way below that price point. You'd even have money left over for extra gear like, helmet, gloves, etc. Like kstephens pointed out, as a newbie, its best if you went to your LBS and got fitted for the right bike. They would also be able to answer all of your questions and do any adjustments you need. With a used bike the owner may or may not know anything about the bike and definitely wouldn't be able to give you the customer service you need and deserve. With your LBS you become a customer (hopefully) for life.

MrsN

Yeah, I want new. So I'll look around locally and see what is in my budget. I'll make sure to get some proper gear too.



Quote:
Originally Posted by lucienrau View Post
I' d second cyclocross bikes as a good all rounder. Take a look at the surly cross-check as it is more versatile than most and can handle some trails. Touring bikes also make good all round bikes and tend to have be more clyde friendly from the start. Jamis bikes are pretty good bang for the buck. Find a good dealer and try it multiple times before you buy, fit is hugely important. If you're just starting out with drop bars, set them higher than the saddle and don't let them set up a low drop position initially. You can lower a stem but it's harder to fix a steerer tube that is cut too low.

But make sure you feel comfortable with what the shop is telling you. If not, go somewhere you are comfortable. A good shop will help with so many things, but there are many shops that can't or won't be helpful. In my area, there are six shops, only one gets my repeat business. The good ones try to build a longterm relationship with you. Rei tends to carry or be able to order some decent bikes, but their service departments often leave something to be desired.

Look into cycling groups in your area or your state gov webpage, they'll probably. Have info on your local laws, routes to ride, maybe even basic cycling skills classes.

As far as gear goes, start with the bike and a water bottle. You don't need Lycra and not right away if you decide you do want it. I favor wool, some ride in lycra, some in everyday clothes. See what works for you. If you decide to ride to work or school you'll have different needs than if you ride recreationally. So ride and see how you want to ride before investing in stuff you may or may not use.
Thanks. I'll look into those kinds of bikes. And make sure that I buy from a a reputable store I trust. I definitely like knowing that I've made the right purchase.

I think I'll get some padded bike shorts and possibly a somewhat bigger seat. Those skinny seats are pretty uncomfortable to me, but I'm sure it's something I'd get used to after time.



Quote:
Originally Posted by dwellman View Post
I think the 1100 was the total budget. . for everything.

But +1 on the cross bike recommendation. That's what I have and darned if it's not fun fun fun fun.

Yeah, hopefully $1100 for everything.

It's starting to sound like a cross bike is the way to go. I'm curious though, how will I know what bike is strong enough for me? What should the frame be made of?



Quote:
Originally Posted by DTSCDS View Post
Since you are just starting out I would not set your budget anywhere near the $1100 mark. (That is taking into account that part of that $1100 will go toward helmet/pump/tools etc.) Your first bike is kind of a crapshoot. You may fall in love with it, you may end up hating it. At this point you don't know enough to know what you don't know. You don't want to spend too much on specialized bike and very quickly find out that it doesn't do what you find you really like doing the most. However, the opposite is also true--if you spend next to nothing on a department store junk bike you run the risk of it being such a pain to ride that it sours you on the whole idea.

Don't worry about brands--the name on the bike means next to nothing. It's all about the components. (Of course, a reputable brand is going to use better components vs a department store bike so I suppose the brand does mean something. . .) At our sizes the wheels are THE MOST IMPORTANT THING. A quick rule of thumb is more spokes are better. We are kinda like large breasted women trying to wear tiny, frilly, lacy brassieres--less spokes may be sexy but we need firm support!

I think you could find a good hybrid or cyclocross bike somewhere in the $500 range and ride it for a while. You will discover things that you either like or don't like about it. During this period of time start saving for your next bike. (Like I said earlier, it is quite possible that you will love your first bike never part with it. I know I did)

Craigslist is also a good resource since used bikes can be had for a fraction of their new price. There are always great bikes available on CL. (Assuming you are somewhere close enough to one of the Craigslist cities to make The List a possibility.) You can always come on here and ask if a CL find is a good deal or not.

So, to bring this novella to a close: 1) Find a decent hybrid or cyclocross bike, get a helmet, a good pump, some basic tools, a seat pack with extra tubes and some way to pump them up. 2) Watch some YouTube videos so you know how to change your tubes and do basic adjustments. 3) Ride that bad boy like you stole it!

Since you are new here there is one more thing you need to know: we are going to be needing some pictures when you get the new bike. It's just how things are done here!
I don't want to spend that much on a bike, but if I needed to I could.

When you say a good bike for $500, are you talking new or used?

And I'll be sure to post pics when I get it!




Quote:
Originally Posted by digibud View Post
If you're doing this to get in shape, speed isn't everything. A touring type road bike that you can easily add a rear rack and/or panniers to, will provide a lot of flexibility. At some point you may find yourself wanting to ride to the grocery store or some other place 10 or 20 miles away and you may find panniers useful. You might find a friend to go on an overnight ride with, camping. Even bringing a tent is reasonable with a rack and panniers. You'll also get good low gearing with a touring type bike, which is a huge help for anyone overweight and working at getting into shape. A cross bike may also be a great idea. Some come ready for racks but most don't have braze ons for front racks. Just something to consider.

Yeah, I don't care about how fast I'm going as long as I'm getting a good workout.

Hopefully after a while I would like to start riding it larger distances.


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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
It sounds like a cyclocross bike might be right for you. Think of it as a heavy, but strong road bike.
Sounds good to me. I like the look of them as well so that's a plus. Now to decide on a brand/model.




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Originally Posted by bradtx View Post
Coby, Congrats on you lifestyle change decision.

A 'blank sheet' suggestion is really harder because there are so many critical variables such as your weight and fit of the bike itself (bikes are kind of like shoes, a real PIA if the size isn't correct). If you're less than 300 lbs. I suggest a hybrid with 36 spoke 700c wheels, over 300 lbs. and I suggest something with 36 spoke 26" wheels (stronger).

Go to a bike shop to find the correct size of bicycle, there should be good ones in the $600 range. You'll NEED a helmet and WANT a saddle bag, tire tools, frame mounted air pump, tire repair patches and a spare tube. Brands of bicycle aren't too important at this point, Trek, Specialized, Cannondale and Giant are perhaps the most popular with many others equally well built.

HTH, Brad

Alright thanks. I'm 290lbs. What does the 700c refer to with the wheels?



Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelW View Post
A good bike shop is more important than a particular brand.
Any affordable bike has a strong enough frame but the weak point are the wheels. Depending on your weight you may need to pick with care. Generally, fancy, modern low-spoke wheels dont have the strength, reliability and repairability of std wheels.
There is more to cycling than "training" and "fitness programs". If you incorporate riding into your everyday transportation you will excercise more without thinking. A useful everyday bike needs useful features such as rack and fender eyelets, sufficient tyre clearance and low-enough gears.

If you can find a used Hybrid style bike in reasonable condition, you can start riding for a much lower startup cost and you will gain some experience and knowledge if you decide to get a road racer. Lots of sport riders find 2 bikes useful, one for errands and one for training and events.
Yeah, I'm going to make sure I find a good shop to get it from.

And I will for sure start riding the bike around town when I need to go somewhere.
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Old 06-01-11, 02:46 PM   #20
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Hey Coby ... Not a recommendation by any stretch (though I do love my bike) ... I'm 6'3", 270, started at 305 or so when I really got back into riding and I ride a Trek 1.2 Triple ... it's a road bike, not a cross or anything like that.

If it can support me, it can surely support you. It's an aluminum frame.

I rode about a thousand miles last year. Not as many so far this year, but I'm getting there.

Just understand that you have LOTS of options ... and your size isn't the hindrance you think it is.

Mainly get a bike that fits you, that you like and that you love to ride, because once you start, you'll want to ride all the time.
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Old 06-01-11, 02:51 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by ill.clyde View Post
Hey Coby ... Not a recommendation by any stretch (though I do love my bike) ... I'm 6'3", 270, started at 305 or so when I really got back into riding and I ride a Trek 1.2 Triple ... it's a road bike, not a cross or anything like that.

If it can support me, it can surely support you. It's an aluminum frame.

I rode about a thousand miles last year. Not as many so far this year, but I'm getting there.

Just understand that you have LOTS of options ... and your size isn't the hindrance you think it is.

Mainly get a bike that fits you, that you like and that you love to ride, because once you start, you'll want to ride all the time.
Okay, thanks.

I just want to make sure I get something strong enough.
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Old 06-01-11, 02:52 PM   #22
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I'm trying to get an idea of prices and I'm just looking around online. Would something like this be a good option?

http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...ane/outlaw.htm
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Old 06-01-11, 03:39 PM   #23
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Sounds good to me. I like the look of them as well so that's a plus. Now to decide on a brand/model.
Why?

When I bought my road bike, I test rode a lot of bikes, and got the one that "spoke to" me. I continue to be happy with it eight or nine months later. Since you aren't into something very specialized ( a steel frame with bar end shifters that can haul a tent and lots of water, say ) the brand doesn't matter that much. All the CX bike makers will have something very nice in your price range. You should decide based on things like (ideally) how the bike fits you, if it has whatever features you want, its wheel strength and weight capacity, stuff like that.

The Outlaw you spotted looks nice. I really like disc brakes. Your stopping distance is much more consistent in the rain, and it's harder to get things stuck in them. Now, the downside is you'll be doing the maintenance yourself. For some people that's great, and for others, it's overwhelming. That's the thing about buying from the interwebz.
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Old 06-01-11, 03:46 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Coby View Post
I'm trying to get an idea of prices and I'm just looking around online. Would something like this be a good option?

http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...ane/outlaw.htm
This would be a better choice:
http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/windsor/tourist.htm

Brad
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Old 06-01-11, 03:49 PM   #25
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I was actually just going to suggest looking at what Nashbar/Performance or BikesDirect had to offer. If you go that route, you should definitely take the wheels to a local shop and get them to look them over and adjust/true them before you put the rest of the bike together to ride. While the assembly is usually pretty easy when you order from those places, if you have a friend who is knowledgable about bikes and can help you, you should bribe them with beer for a little help.
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