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  1. #1
    Senior Member zencalm's Avatar
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    I rode my granny gear to work, and I am not ashamed!

    Today, I rode my granny gear to work. I am not ashamed! Nope. It was a moderate drizzle and a pannier was attached to my bike. For whatever reason, even just 5-10 lbs on a pannier feels like the equivalent of 30 on my body. I just felt drained and tired. So I lowered my gear from 2 to 1 (lol) and trucked along.

    I don't care if I'm slow. I don't care if I currently only ride 6 miles a day. It feels damn good to be riding daily, and watching myself improve slowly but surely. My eating is still less than ideal, but every day, no matter the weather, I'm riding.

    Consistency in exercise has been a skill that I have yet to master. If it takes my granny gear to ride daily, then I'll be shifting down and plodding away.
    The only way to know for sure is to practice, and if you practice enough, it will be obtainable. - cranky velocist

  2. #2
    Banned. Mr. Beanz's Avatar
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    I ride my granny gear alot. I wasn't aware that I should be ashamed.

  3. #3
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    Beats walking.
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PGukLuXzH1E

    Set F1re To The Ra1n ( NY Night Rain Ride)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W7jfcWEkSrI

  4. #4
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    beats driving!

  5. #5
    Senior Member zencalm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Beanz View Post
    I ride my granny gear alot. I wasn't aware that I should be ashamed.
    I feel like I see posts about big gears a lot. Maybe it's just me. Beanz, I always think of you mashing away on the max gear or something. Feels good to know I'm not alone!
    The only way to know for sure is to practice, and if you practice enough, it will be obtainable. - cranky velocist

  6. #6
    Senior Member zencalm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
    Beats walking.
    Once you bike, it's so hard to go back to walking...knowing on your bike you'd be flying.
    The only way to know for sure is to practice, and if you practice enough, it will be obtainable. - cranky velocist

  7. #7
    Senior Member zencalm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chefisaac View Post
    beats driving!
    Yessir. I think I had the erroneous perception that kicking it in granny gear was looked down upon. I don't know why I thought that, but putting it in one versus 2 felt so much nicer on the hills.
    The only way to know for sure is to practice, and if you practice enough, it will be obtainable. - cranky velocist

  8. #8
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    Summer of 2009 on a cross country tour a stayed in my granny for three entire days because of the hills.
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PGukLuXzH1E

    Set F1re To The Ra1n ( NY Night Rain Ride)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W7jfcWEkSrI

  9. #9
    SuperGimp TrojanHorse's Avatar
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    Your observation is EXACTLY why I don't agree with all those "no point in buying a light bike until I lose weight" people... I'm not advocating gram counting but I think that extra weight on the bike itself is very noticeable in comparison to something a bit lighter.

    How many gears do you have? My kids bikes have a crazy low granny gear... legs spinning wildly and they barely move. You can ride up a wall on those things. looking at the rear cassette on their bike, you get gear, gear, gear, gear, gear, gear, DINNER PLATE and it's kind of funny.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Pistard's Avatar
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    you are out there riding, granny gear? I did not know what it was till I started pocking around here, why care? you ride everyday, thats the best. plenty of "regular" bike riders like us out there....

  11. #11
    Senior Member Mithrandir's Avatar
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    Panniers have a negative aerodynamic effect, which is most likely why you felt it hurt more than just the weight.

  12. #12
    Not safe for work cyclokitty's Avatar
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    I love my granny gear


  13. #13
    Humvee of bikes =Worksman Nightshade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zencalm View Post
    Today, I rode my granny gear to work. I am not ashamed! Nope. It was a moderate drizzle and a pannier was attached to my bike. For whatever reason, even just 5-10 lbs on a pannier feels like the equivalent of 30 on my body. I just felt drained and tired. So I lowered my gear from 2 to 1 (lol) and trucked along.

    I don't care if I'm slow. I don't care if I currently only ride 6 miles a day. It feels damn good to be riding daily, and watching myself improve slowly but surely. My eating is still less than ideal, but every day, no matter the weather, I'm riding.

    Consistency in exercise has been a skill that I have yet to master. If it takes my granny gear to ride daily, then I'll be shifting down and plodding away.
    Pay very close attention to your tire PSI since low PSI is like dragging a boat anchor behind you.
    My preferred bicycle brand is.......WORKSMAN CYCLES
    I dislike clipless pedals on any city bike since I feel they are unsafe.

    Originally Posted by krazygluon
    Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
    Aluminum: barely a hundred, which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?

  14. #14
    Senior Member zencalm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nightshade View Post
    Pay very close attention to your tire PSI since low PSI is like dragging a boat anchor behind you.
    Good thought Nightshade. My tires have a PSI of 75-100 and every night I pump them up to 90. My LBS told me about the PSI, so I made sure to get a floor pump.
    The only way to know for sure is to practice, and if you practice enough, it will be obtainable. - cranky velocist

  15. #15
    Senior Member zencalm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pistard View Post
    you are out there riding, granny gear? I did not know what it was till I started pocking around here, why care? you ride everyday, thats the best. plenty of "regular" bike riders like us out there....
    It makes the hills sooooo much easier. I was in Boston traffic yesterday, and I finally discovered the other side of Mass Ave, a busy street, where the bike lanes fade out at points. I was going quite fast, and it was sort of an adventure navigating with the buses. Of course I stopped at all the lights, waited my turn, etc etc, but .
    The only way to know for sure is to practice, and if you practice enough, it will be obtainable. - cranky velocist

  16. #16
    Senior Member zencalm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclokitty View Post
    I love my granny gear
    +1

    PS- your signature makes me dizzy.....I love the rainbow cat the best, although it's a tough call.
    The only way to know for sure is to practice, and if you practice enough, it will be obtainable. - cranky velocist

  17. #17
    Senior Member zencalm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
    Summer of 2009 on a cross country tour a stayed in my granny for three entire days because of the hills.
    Your legs must have been like steel after that race.
    The only way to know for sure is to practice, and if you practice enough, it will be obtainable. - cranky velocist

  18. #18
    Senior Member zencalm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mithrandir View Post
    Panniers have a negative aerodynamic effect, which is most likely why you felt it hurt more than just the weight.
    Mith, that makes sense, but it is SUCH a big difference. I am thinking about getting a CETMA rack for the front of the bike to take away that aerodynamic penalty. I've read a few good things in the utility forum, and truth be told, the bracket (basket/rack) sort of makes me drool.
    The only way to know for sure is to practice, and if you practice enough, it will be obtainable. - cranky velocist

  19. #19
    Senior Member zencalm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
    Your observation is EXACTLY why I don't agree with all those "no point in buying a light bike until I lose weight" people... I'm not advocating gram counting but I think that extra weight on the bike itself is very noticeable in comparison to something a bit lighter.

    How many gears do you have? My kids bikes have a crazy low granny gear... legs spinning wildly and they barely move. You can ride up a wall on those things. looking at the rear cassette on their bike, you get gear, gear, gear, gear, gear, gear, DINNER PLATE and it's kind of funny.
    That is funny. => I have 8 gears. I ride a men's 2011 Globe Daily 2. Globe is Specialized's commuter bike division. When I first got my bike, I thought the tires were sooooo skinny (I had a Raleigh mountain bike 10 years ago), even though they are only 28s. I am glad I started with this bike, and it has great geometry. A road bike probably would have terrified me. I think in a year or so, I'll add a vintage Raleigh 3 speed (or similar) to my stable of bikes. I have one now, but that n + 1 hankering gets strong...
    The only way to know for sure is to practice, and if you practice enough, it will be obtainable. - cranky velocist

  20. #20
    Not safe for work cyclokitty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zencalm View Post
    +1

    PS- your signature makes me dizzy.....I love the rainbow cat the best, although it's a tough call.
    Rainbow kitty is Nyan Cat . I'll apologize in advance to everyone who clicks the link.


  21. #21
    Commuter & cyclotourist brianogilvie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nightshade View Post
    Pay very close attention to your tire PSI since low PSI is like dragging a boat anchor behind you.
    Yes, and high PSI is like riding a jackhammer. I aim for 15% tire drop, following Frank Berto's recommendation.

    As for grannies: I have a 20" gear on my New World Tourist and I'm not ashamed to use it.

  22. #22
    Senior Member zencalm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brianogilvie View Post
    Yes, and high PSI is like riding a jackhammer. I aim for 15% tire drop, following Frank Berto's recommendation.

    As for grannies: I have a 20" gear on my New World Tourist and I'm not ashamed to use it.
    I have looked at Sheldon's page about gear ratios, etc and I can't really seem to figure out the whole PSI/gears/ultimate ride on tires. Can you explain a little or point to a link? I can't seem to open the Berto one.
    The only way to know for sure is to practice, and if you practice enough, it will be obtainable. - cranky velocist

  23. #23
    Senior Member Mithrandir's Avatar
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    Basically, the more air pressure that's in a tire, the more the bike vibrates. It gets transferred into your arms and seat, and can leave you pretty sore.

    Less air pressure in a tire means it sucks up more of the road static.

    Likewise, the same effect follows with tire width. Wider tires suck up road static, while thinner tires are more "hard".

    This comes at a speed tradeoff; the thinner/higher pressure your tires are, the less rolling resistance they create, and let you go faster. Personally, I would rather have a softer ride than going negligibly faster.

  24. #24
    Senior Member zencalm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mithrandir View Post
    Basically, the more air pressure that's in a tire, the more the bike vibrates. It gets transferred into your arms and seat, and can leave you pretty sore.

    Less air pressure in a tire means it sucks up more of the road static.

    Likewise, the same effect follows with tire width. Wider tires suck up road static, while thinner tires are more "hard".

    This comes at a speed tradeoff; the thinner/higher pressure your tires are, the less rolling resistance they create, and let you go faster. Personally, I would rather have a softer ride than going negligibly faster.
    Mith, thanks so much! What size are your tires? Right now I am riding stock tires, so Specialized Flak Jackets, 700c x 28.
    The only way to know for sure is to practice, and if you practice enough, it will be obtainable. - cranky velocist

  25. #25
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by zencalm View Post
    Your legs must have been like steel after that race.
    Really old steel. :-)

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