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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 02-23-12, 01:51 PM   #1
Seattle Forrest
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How much solo vs group riding do you do?

Which do you prefer? Why?
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Old 02-23-12, 01:55 PM   #2
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I love commuting to work by myself but when it is a tough ride in (usually cause of the wind), its a relief to see other commuters.

On the weekends, I have no issue with riding by myself. I lack a little confidence when it comes to exploring new areas even if I have a cue sheet. Organized rides I do not mind doing by myself either.

Now, I love riding with my friends and others. Its a good social time for me and the feed off to push each other is nice.
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Old 02-23-12, 02:07 PM   #3
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Mrs. Zoxe and I ride together almost exclusively. We began biking as a way to get out and enjoy the outdoors, together, so it's stayed an "us" thing. It has been harder the last season or so, since I tend to ride faster, and in preparation for events I need to get out and do some solo work.
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Old 02-23-12, 02:12 PM   #4
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About 99 % of my riding is solo.

I get a better workout from a couple group rides. Riding alone means setting my own pace, and a lot of the time that means going faster than most of my friends like to ... but it also means I can slow down if I don't feel like hammering. Which is where the group ride shines; you hang on, or get dropped. But, I can also choose my own route, based on the scenery, or my whims. "I wonder what's down that road on the left?"
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Old 02-23-12, 02:40 PM   #5
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Most of my rides are solo.

I like to wander around and often go further or in different directions than I originally intended when starting out. I prefer to set my own schedule, challenges, pace and stop when I want to and so on.

When I do go riding with others the best part for me is the social aspect.
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Old 02-23-12, 03:14 PM   #6
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Unless I am doing anorganized ride where I join some one or they join up with me; it is solo. I do ride with my wife and son some but that is rare; I ride faster than both of them because I ride more often. Like when she is at work and the kids in school; otherwise we would only have the weekends after I get off work.
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Old 02-23-12, 03:33 PM   #7
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I do group rides 3 or 4 times a week. During the off season when I commute I ride alone but the group rides force me to work harder and I have to go because people are expecting me and I enjoy the companionship.
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Old 02-23-12, 04:47 PM   #8
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For years I rode solo 99% of the time. I liked it.

Years later Gina started riding, we rode together most the time, I liked it.

After that other people started joining in, it's ok but I prefer to ride with Gina alone or one other person. Not real crazy about group rides.

I did try riding with a local cycling club, totally unorganized and too many dangerous riders that think they know how to ride but don't. I won't ride with a club.
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Old 02-23-12, 04:51 PM   #9
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I am a solo rider except on Sunday when I ride with the wife. I suspect I would ride faster and go farther in a group scenario but I have not developed a 15 mph average pace yet. That seems to be the slowest group rides around.
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Old 02-23-12, 05:03 PM   #10
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Solo. Even in a charity ride, I'm solo.
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Old 02-23-12, 05:14 PM   #11
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Now, I love riding with my friends and others. Its a good social time for me and the feed off to push each other is nice.
When I do group rides, it's usually the same type that you described. I've got a small handful of friends who enjoy bikes, and live in town. A few of us have worked together, one dated an old roommate of mine, and two others have their own story. It tends to be mostly closed to outsiders, although occasionally someone will bring one more person along for the ride. And it tends to be disorganized, so that a ride will happen when someone gets a good idea ("let's go to _______") and then starts inviting the others.

It's nice to have the social aspect to a bike ride. And it's probably even nicer for the shared experience. Definitely not the bulk of my riding, though. I enjoy solo rides as much, probably because I can deviate from the course whenever I feel like it, and satisfy my curiosity in random ways.
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Old 02-23-12, 05:23 PM   #12
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I've only ever ridden solo. I can listen to music in one ear that way.

Don't really have a desire to ride in a group.
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Old 02-23-12, 05:42 PM   #13
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Solo. I've only ridden in a group once. It was me, best friend and best friend's boyfriend and I hated most of the ride because the bestie's boy was a knuckle head. He kept riding on the sidewalk even on streets with a bike lane and complained about everything. Sheesh.
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Old 02-23-12, 08:06 PM   #14
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Most of my riding is solo due to getting my miles in when I can get them. Though when the weather is nicer, I do like to ride with the local bike club as much as possible. I like to be pushed every now and again, plus they always do a different route and since I'm still fairly new to the area, it gives me some interesting places to ride that I might not otherwise have visited.
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Old 02-23-12, 08:11 PM   #15
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Solo, as I've never really riden in a group ride on the streets. I did however ride with someone I met for about 5 miles today. I really enjoyed it, as my speed was up, my cadance was up, and I wasn't as tired.
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Old 02-23-12, 08:22 PM   #16
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I ride solo probably 95-99% of the time, I much prefer to ride with others but I need to get my miles in
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Old 02-23-12, 08:29 PM   #17
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I will rid eby myself but much prefer riding with others. Luckally we have a lot of dedicated riders in my area who are well versed in riding large groups. I love riding in a group about 12 strong and just hammering.
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Old 02-23-12, 09:30 PM   #18
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I'm not much of a talker while riding but I do enjoy having company riding the same routes. Our area is not flat so my group rides tend to be cat-and-mouse play - I fall behind on the climbs and make up on downhills/flats. Playing chase is fun. The group rides are best if they are "destination" rides or if people will hang around post-ride to socialize; but on the bike it's mostly business.

I do enjoy solo rides where I can set my own pace. If I want to stop and fiddle around with my lights, drink water, take off a layer, ... I'm not holding up a group. Or if I want to see how fast and how hard I can go, I don't have to stop to regroup. Trying to ride along with a slower rider is practically torture for me unless it is somebody I really like. Peer pressure tends to result in me doing things that aren't in my best interests too.

It's also nice setting my own schedule and not having to drive 40 miles to ride my bike 35 miles at too-darn-early in the am.

Long story short: One or two group rides/week; one or two solo rides per week.
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Old 02-24-12, 01:03 AM   #19
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I like riding with one or two friends... I signed up to ride some monster ride around Los Angeles this spring just for kicks so we'll see how that goes.

But when I ride alone (which is frequent, and usually during the week) look out! Damn I'm fast! Wooo hoo! Wind in my helmet.

I'd prefer to ride with my wife more often but then we need to find something for the kids to do - they both have bikes but the kids go, uh, slower, than I like going. And sometimes the whining is excruciating. I'd smack 'em but in public it's hard to get away with.
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Old 02-24-12, 03:58 AM   #20
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Solo. I ride at weird times. Also wish the wife would join in the rides.
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Old 02-24-12, 06:01 AM   #21
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My favorite ride is a "Vintage and Cruiser bike" ride on the last Sunday of the month. It's a very slow(7-10 mph overall!) ride around downtown, and a chance to bring your new tall bike, old Schwinn, dumpster or thrift shop find, etc, and socialize. It's a lycra free zone and a great break from pushing.
That said, most of my riding is done alone commuting or riding at odd times since I work 12 hour swings. My favorite solo riding time is 3 am when I'm staying up to change to night shift. The streets are empty and I have them all to myself! That is sweet!
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Old 02-24-12, 06:12 AM   #22
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Which do you prefer? Why?
Because I'm primarily a commmuter/utilitarian bicyclist, mostly solo.
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Old 02-24-12, 06:56 AM   #23
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Tuesdays, also Thursdays in the warmer half of the year- group ride with Greater Dallas Bicyclists. This tends to be a "group" as opposed to a formal paceline.
Saturdays- rando rides with Lone Star Randonneurs, anywhere from 2 to a dozen or more people riding together.
Other days- all solo.
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Old 02-24-12, 07:02 AM   #24
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I always thought that I would like riding in a group but could never keep up. Here in Texas I ran into some retired guys from another park on the bike trail and at the end of the trail I asked where they were going. They invited me along to see. We rode a few miles more to breakfast. Then we took a long way back that was unfamiliar to me, getting in 30 miles. Now I have been riding with them two or three days a week for the past month on rides going from 22 to 43 miles. It has been so much fun. The time flies. We chat. Our pace last month was about 9.7mph averaged and this month is pushing 11mph so it is quite slow but we are starting to move a bit faster. I ride the hybrid with more aggressive tires on it as we do a variety of surfaces so the pace works fine for me. We just had a new rider join us, a retiree that has done century rides and multi-day rides. He is riding a mountain bike and is fine with our pace. He helped push us along on our recent ride that broke 40 miles. This was the longest ride ever for one of our guys. It was fun to see someone hit a record for themselves at age 62 as I've been setting my own records. When I am off the hybrid and on the road bike I've noticed that I am a hair faster, now getting up to 13.7 over ten miles. Speed is coming slow to me but it is moving up.

Today it is raining so we will skip our ride. I'm bummed. It is the highlight of my week.

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Old 02-24-12, 07:51 AM   #25
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The majority of my riding is solo and I use to hate riding in groups. However, I've found a real good group to ride with - Grupetto - and I'm really loving riding with them. Now when I'm doing a solo ride, I find myself looking forward to my group ride.
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