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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 09-29-11, 11:04 AM   #1
zencalm
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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.
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Old 09-29-11, 11:13 AM   #2
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I ride my granny gear alot. I wasn't aware that I should be ashamed.
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Old 09-29-11, 11:16 AM   #3
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Beats walking.
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Old 09-29-11, 11:52 AM   #4
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beats driving!
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Old 09-29-11, 03:07 PM   #5
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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!
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Old 09-29-11, 03:07 PM   #6
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Beats walking.
Once you bike, it's so hard to go back to walking...knowing on your bike you'd be flying.
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Old 09-29-11, 03:08 PM   #7
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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.
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Old 09-29-11, 03:14 PM   #8
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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.
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Old 09-29-11, 03:30 PM   #9
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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.
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Old 09-29-11, 05:37 PM   #10
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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....
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Old 09-29-11, 07:29 PM   #11
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Panniers have a negative aerodynamic effect, which is most likely why you felt it hurt more than just the weight.
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Old 09-29-11, 08:56 PM   #12
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I love my granny gear
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Old 09-30-11, 12:01 PM   #13
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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.
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Old 09-30-11, 02:49 PM   #14
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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.
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Old 09-30-11, 02:51 PM   #15
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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....
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 .
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Old 09-30-11, 02:52 PM   #16
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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.
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Old 09-30-11, 02:53 PM   #17
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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.
Your legs must have been like steel after that race.
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Old 09-30-11, 02:54 PM   #18
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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.
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Old 09-30-11, 03:06 PM   #19
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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.
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...
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Old 09-30-11, 06:10 PM   #20
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+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.
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Old 10-02-11, 07:38 AM   #21
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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.
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Old 10-02-11, 01:38 PM   #22
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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.
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Old 10-02-11, 01:52 PM   #23
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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.
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Old 10-02-11, 04:27 PM   #24
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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.
Mith, thanks so much! What size are your tires? Right now I am riding stock tires, so Specialized Flak Jackets, 700c x 28.
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Old 10-02-11, 04:31 PM   #25
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Your legs must have been like steel after that race.
Really old steel. :-)
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