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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 08-18-11, 10:03 AM   #1
ill.clyde
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Looking ahead ... off-season ...

So it's August, mid August actually, and I'm already looking ahead and contemplating my "off-season" riding plans.

For those of you in warmer climates, I'm envious ... many of us have this thing called winter, and snow, so we ride our bikes indoors.

Now I have a mag trainer, and I like it, but I'm contemplating rollers for this coming off season. Any of you guys ride rollers? Any upside to rollers over mag resistance training?
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Old 08-18-11, 10:20 AM   #2
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There is a trainer that rocks as well. It is similar to a mag it just allows for lateral movement. If you use rollers put the roller in a door frame so you can steady yourself. Once you get up to speed just keep going. Your gonna need to use old tires so that you don't ruin your good ones.

Some of us actually ride in the wind/rain/snow/hail/ice and other winter weather. I like the misery. Although for long rides, 40 miles or more, I will probably get a set of rollers.

Roller upside is that you actually get to use the entire bike whereas mag trainers allow you to just pedal.
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Old 08-18-11, 10:23 AM   #3
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That's why I just bought a mtn bike, it will be my main cycling outlet during the winter months.
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Old 08-18-11, 10:24 AM   #4
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Rollers are superior to trainers IF you can ride them without falling/hurting yourself. They don't provide as much resistance, but the spin & efficiency benefits far outweigh the negatives. IMHO.
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Old 08-18-11, 10:52 AM   #5
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Rollers are superior to trainers IF you can ride them without falling/hurting yourself. They don't provide as much resistance, but the spin & efficiency benefits far outweigh the negatives. IMHO.
You can get attachment fan units for resistance on rollers. The Kreitler fan add-on will work with just almost all roller setups.
The other option is to get small radius rollers. It's easier to ride big ol' 3.75" or 4" barrels, but a pair of 2.5" or 3.0" rollers will put some hurt on you.

I'm a huge fan of rollers over mag trainers. The benefits to your form are immediately noticed when you get back out on the road and wreck s*** like a monster. Your spin will be smoother and faster and your balance/handling skills will level up quickly. I transitioned from injured after last season, to post surgical recovery on rollers during the winter/spring, to outdoors and riding exclusively singlespeed on the hills of the PacNW.
You don't need to spend a fortune on them, either. I've got a cheap pair of Nashbar house-brand parabolics. Less than $125 on sale last year.
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Old 08-18-11, 10:53 AM   #6
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People pay thousands of dollars to fly halfway across the country, dress up in cold weather gear, and spend half the day sitting inside a lodge, with most of the other half spent standing in lift lines or sitting on a moving sky bench, all for the pleasure of letting gravity take them down a snowy mountainside.

Apparently, they consider this a sport.

Instead, I put on about half to a third as much cold weather gear, and ride my bike. I'm in similar temperatures, but I'm working out the whole time, so I don't need nearly as much insulation.

If the roads are good enough to drive on without chains or studded tires1, they're good enough to bike on2. Invest in quality cold weather gear. You'd be surprised how warm you feel wearing some leg warmers, a long sleeve jersey, a balaclava, and a wind-proof jacket when you're out tooling along at 90rpm.

1 - Some people build up studded tires for winter riding in extreme conditions. I don't live in such an area, although I run disc brakes, and carry enough zip-ties in my bag to create makeshift studs by putting a loop around my tires between each spoke. Won't work if you have rim brakes.

2 - caveat: watch for snow and ice build-up along the edges of the road. Such conditions call for taking the lane more than you would in fair weather.
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Old 08-18-11, 10:58 AM   #7
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Clifton ... been looking at the Nashbar ones too ... thanks for the info
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Old 08-18-11, 03:33 PM   #8
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Great ideas on the zip ties
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Old 08-18-11, 03:50 PM   #9
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Some people build up studded tires for winter riding in extreme conditions. I don't live in such an area, although I run disc brakes, and carry enough zip-ties in my bag to create makeshift studs by putting a loop around my tires between each spoke. Won't work if you have rim brakes.
Works just fine. Stopping is a little abrupt, though.
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Old 08-18-11, 04:20 PM   #10
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I bundle up like an Inuit and ride outdoors.
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Old 08-18-11, 04:21 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by ill.clyde View Post
So it's August, mid August actually, and I'm already looking ahead and contemplating my "off-season" riding plans.

For those of you in warmer climates, I'm envious ... many of us have this thing called winter, and snow, so we ride our bikes indoors.

Now I have a mag trainer, and I like it, but I'm contemplating rollers for this coming off season. Any of you guys ride rollers? Any upside to rollers over mag resistance training?

Hear ya Brother. Buffalo, NY. 'Nuff said.


Well ok I have a bit more to say:

I'm going to cycle for as long as I possibly can, until there's snow on the ground. Maybe even after there's snow on the ground. Then I'll transition into nordic skiing on the weekends, and use my indoor recumbent exercise bike on the weekdays. Won't be as much fun, however.
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Old 08-18-11, 04:28 PM   #12
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If i ride a hybrid I cant use it as a winter bike? Must I get get a mountain bike? Im asking cause my apt is really a tiny studio. if you say yes I guess I could dismantle the tires off the hybrid.
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Old 08-18-11, 05:18 PM   #13
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We don't get much in the way of winter down here but we do get temps. in the teens and twenties with a lot of rain and sleet. I ride year round and actually really enjoy the "cold" weather stuff. It makes up for the days on end of 100+ days that we have to eat during the summer. Dunno if I could hack the kind of winters that a lot of you have to deal with, though.
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Old 08-19-11, 07:27 AM   #14
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Cross-country skiing! Burns lots of calories, gets you outdoors in the sunlight (at least on weekends), uses almost every muscle you have. You can choose between classic technique or skating. If you have the opportunity to ski at least 4 times a week, you can do both, otherwise pick one or the other. (I tried doing both one year and found that I wasn't doing either often enough to get my technique up to speed.)
Snowshoeing is another good winter option for getting outdoors in the sunlight and getting some exercise.
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Old 08-19-11, 07:29 AM   #15
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If i ride a hybrid I cant use it as a winter bike? Must I get get a mountain bike? Im asking cause my apt is really a tiny studio. if you say yes I guess I could dismantle the tires off the hybrid.
With studded winter tires, there is no reason you can't use your hybrid. I've ridden mine in the winter. It has disc brakes and an internally geared hub, which makes it particularly suitable, but I've seen people riding more conventional hybrids here.
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Old 08-19-11, 07:37 AM   #16
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(Raises hand)

Another winter rider here. I have studded tires in the basement for my LHT. My mileage drops during the winter. I don't own a trainer, and don't want one.
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Old 08-19-11, 07:39 AM   #17
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Moved from Chicago to Tampa a little over 2 years ago. Tried doing some outdoor riding in winter in Chicago (coldest ride = 10 below) but used a trainer a lot. Now being in Tampa, winter is the best riding weather. Not as hot or as humid. No need for a trainer.
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Old 08-19-11, 08:08 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by ill.clyde View Post
So it's August, mid August actually, and I'm already looking ahead and contemplating my "off-season" riding plans.

For those of you in warmer climates, I'm envious ... many of us have this thing called winter, and snow, so we ride our bikes indoors.

Now I have a mag trainer, and I like it, but I'm contemplating rollers for this coming off season. Any of you guys ride rollers? Any upside to rollers over mag resistance training?
When you speak of this "off-season" of what do you speak? I don't live in those "warmer climates" yet I've been able to ride my bike at least once each month since 1988 (I only have records going back that far). That includes getting in the last day of December after breaking an ankle at Thanksgiving and having surgery to remove old hardware. I just squeaked that last day of December because that's the day they removed the cast.

My average number of week days - I don't track weekend rides - ridden per month in the winter time is between 7 and 10 with January and February being the lowest. But I've also ridden up to 19 weekdays in December, which is equal to my record for June. All it takes to ride year 'round is determination and lots of clothes ...and some lights.

Ride you fool!
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Old 08-19-11, 08:40 AM   #19
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oh I ride into the cold weather ... at least until it gets absolutely unbearable and on any day where it's not snowing/wet/etc.

but to keep my base miles, I need to ride indoors
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Old 08-19-11, 08:54 AM   #20
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Old 08-19-11, 09:02 AM   #21
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Hike.
yeah ... might run too, depending on my ankle and how it heals, as well as if I have foot surgery this winter as I'm considering
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Old 08-20-11, 12:07 PM   #22
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I'm bidding on a three wheeled recumbent for this winter. Last winter I used a 20 inch tire city bike, seat lowered so that I could easily walk my bike if I needed to without dismounting. I was really suprised how well normal city tires did in slush and light to medium snow. Luckily snow only lasts an afternoon here in the Netherlands. The rain melts it off. We only had 6 or 7 days of so called "bad" snow here. (Im originally from Indiana, so I laugh at what the Dutch call snow)
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Old 08-20-11, 01:33 PM   #23
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I'm bidding on a three wheeled recumbent for this winter. Last winter I used a 20 inch tire city bike, seat lowered so that I could easily walk my bike if I needed to without dismounting. I was really suprised how well normal city tires did in slush and light to medium snow. Luckily snow only lasts an afternoon here in the Netherlands. The rain melts it off. We only had 6 or 7 days of so called "bad" snow here. (Im originally from Indiana, so I laugh at what the Dutch call snow)
I've read that trikes are bad for winter riding, since you have 3 wheel paths instead of 1, thus creating a lot more resistance when rolling through snow.
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Old 08-20-11, 01:46 PM   #24
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Hmmmm, Lets see; No heat, normally about 55-65, I think I'll ride outside!
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Old 08-20-11, 05:26 PM   #25
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You won't believe how far the right gear will take you outside. I don't ride in ice, but commute to work in just about anything else.

My commute is only 4 miles each way, though.

I hate home trainers. Hate is the right word, too.

I much prefer to go to the gym, and to cross-train doing other things. Mostly I go to spin class (a lot more standing than you do outside), hit the elliptical trainer, and lift weights. Especially leg weights that help my IT-band knee issues, and my bum shoulder (rotator cuff issues from heavier weight lifting days when I was younger, a lot stronger...and stupid).
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