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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 10-01-12, 10:18 PM   #1
Shellyrides
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Grrrr..just got back from the local bike club meeting

Well lets just say they are NOT beginner friendly. They call them self family oriented but have NOTHING for the younger riders. When asked if they have any rides that beginners with mt bike with slicks on could do I was told that unless you have a road bike you will never keep up so don't bother. Then after the meeting people kept coming up to talk about my daughters (age 12) riding ability, but when I told them I was the rider she had just come along they looked shocked and moved on.

I sure hope I get some response from my CL add about Clydes and Athenas.
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Old 10-01-12, 10:27 PM   #2
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Are you sure this is the only group close to you? Check with your LBS for group rides they do or know of.
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Old 10-01-12, 10:30 PM   #3
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I have looked around. My next two bets are 40 miles south or 50 miles north In Mt Shasta. Not sure if its worth the drive.
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Old 10-01-12, 10:40 PM   #4
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my rule of thumb, I HAVE to be on the bike pedaling longer then the drive there and back in order to be worth it. Keep looking, you'll find some peps. also try different routes while riding to find more people to chat with.
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Old 10-01-12, 10:46 PM   #5
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Shelly, when or if I ever get a rack for my car, and I have any random excuse to be in your area, I'll ride with you... well as long as it's on a street, my Allez won't off road very well. Well, assuming you don't leave me behind. :-)
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Old 10-01-12, 10:55 PM   #6
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Shelly, when or if I ever get a rack for my car, and I have any random excuse to be in your area, I'll ride with you... well as long as it's on a street, my Allez won't off road very well. Well, assuming you don't leave me behind. :-)
Thank you Sean. You made my night.
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Old 10-02-12, 04:30 AM   #7
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my rule of thumb, I HAVE to be on the bike pedaling longer then the drive there and back in order to be worth it. Keep looking, you'll find some peps. also try different routes while riding to find more people to chat with.

I would agree with this though I've made exceptions like when riding in NYC and such.
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Old 10-02-12, 04:39 AM   #8
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That sucks! I'm a director for one of the local clubs here the Oshawa Cycling Club and we have a Tuesday night ride called the Rookie and Recreational Ride and we have riders show up on any number of different bikes. Our slowest group averages 16-18kph then we have 18-21kph, 22-25, 26-29, and 29+ We do our best to accomiate and always make sure there are maps available for route to be taken but no one gets left behind. I will say though about 80% of riders who show up with a MTB slick combo at start of the year eventually show up with a road bike. Since we started this ride in 2009 our membership has grown from 76 to 345. Hope you find a group.
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Old 10-02-12, 07:39 AM   #9
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It sure sucks... but why don't you go out in the car, look for a couple of routes, put a little chart of the route together, then go ride it on your bike, using your chart and making any corrrections as required.

When you're satisfied, go to the club with a proposal that you will run a beginners ride.

If they scotch the idea then... get out and stay out of the club and find some other one that will be more accommodating.

There are plenty of threads on running rides and what has to be taken into consideration. You've got winter to check it all out. The Road and 50+ Forums are handy resources. Do a search on "organising rides" to see what you can turn up. Most of the threads, even in the Road forum, have been pretty civilised and informative. I think there was a very good one started by punkcat recently.

You might even include in your description something like "leisurely touring ride" rather than "group ride" which always has connotation of speed, and is like an open invitation for the testosteronsi to get involved.

It's one way of living up to the saying: Don't complain; do something about it!
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Old 10-02-12, 08:36 AM   #10
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I have looked around. My next two bets are 40 miles south or 50 miles north In Mt Shasta. Not sure if its worth the drive.
You've checked out all these? Looks like two or three in your area (although maybe they're the ones that are 40-50 miles away).

If you can find even one or two other people through CL, try starting a Facebook group. A small group started here three years ago that way, we typically get 50-70 riders now.
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Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."
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Old 10-02-12, 09:00 AM   #11
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Yeah, i've been through that. Guys from the LBS tell me, "Thursday is the recreational ride, you'll fit in fine." I pull up and get my bike off the truck bed and this dude in a full kit with a very serious look yells, "NO MORE REC RIDES! WE'RE DOING THE DEATH MARCH FOR THE NEXT 2 HOURS!"

I know I cult when I see it, I put my bike back in my truck and left. The best thing I have done is I bought a cheap wally world bike off craigslist and put some new tires on it and fixed everything. When i have friends or family over i'll talk them into going for a bike ride. 2 friends went out and bought their own bikes and ride with me every chance we get since then.
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Old 10-02-12, 09:39 AM   #12
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These two say they have a no drop policy, thats what I look for

Redding Velo bicycling club: Hosts club rides 9 a.m. Saturdays from Sue's Java Cafe, 1712 Churn Creek Road in Redding. No drop policy. Rides throughout Shasta County. Information: www.reddingvelo.com

Shasta Wheelmen bicycling group: Rides for all levels Saturdays, Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. No drop policy. Occasional tours out of the area. Tuesday and Thursday show-and-go rides depart 9 a.m. from Coffee Creek, 2380 Athens Ave., Redding. Information: www.shastawheelmen.org

looks like those shasta's are the 50 miles away
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Old 10-02-12, 09:42 AM   #13
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I agree with planning a ride and offering to lead it. IIRC you prefer a non-local LBS so if there is anyway to become friends with one of your local shops perhaps they will help you form a group more to your liking. Or you could pull up stakes and move to Ellensburg, WA and I'll ride with you.
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Old 10-02-12, 09:48 AM   #14
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I agree with planning a ride and offering to lead it.
Actually, the club I ride with "offers" three groups (Swifties, Pacers & Cruisers). My wife, who's a beginner, has done the Cruiser ride a few times. I end up "leading" the group. There are a few other "true Cruiser" people that show up and we will accommodate them, providing a leader for the group (often only 2-3 people in the Cruiser group including the leader).

As a new rider, though, I would expect that even if you "lead" a beginners group, you shouldn't have to ride alone. Any club worth riding with will have one or two volunteers that will ride with you, no matter how slow you prefer to ride.
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Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."
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Old 10-02-12, 09:50 AM   #15
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Sorry to hear of your bad experience.
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Old 10-02-12, 09:57 AM   #16
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Are you active in the NorCal forum here? If you put the word out there, you may get a bite or two.

Also, do you talk to people when you ride? If you ride at a consistent time, and see the same faces, say hi and see if they want to ride together. I had that happen to me a while back. I had a guy tell me of a Sunday morning no-drop ride and suggested I stop by. I did, but it was before I got the Lynskey. So, I show up with my RockHopper with slicks and was told by the co-leader that I wouldn't be able to keep up and I would be more than welcome when I got a road bike. This was pre-cancer, so I think I could have easily kept up, if not dropped a few. Dropping wasn't my goal, but that putz had no way of knowing my physical condition at the time. I left, not because I didn't think I could hang, but his attitude really bothered me. Life is too short.
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Old 10-02-12, 10:08 AM   #17
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Coming across people unfitting to your objectives is an expected part of the process and just a little hurdle in the journey. When a door closes a window opens somewhere else. Still have other leads open like CL and other places to explore like local MUPs. Stay positive. Good luck.
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Old 10-02-12, 10:12 AM   #18
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Best of luck in finding a place where you fit in.
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Old 10-02-12, 10:29 AM   #19
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I've had the experience of showing up for club rides and being dropped almost leaving the parking lot. For some groups "no drop ride" is just a theory. I've now gotten to where about half the time I show up with this club, I will find some folks my own pace. The larger the turnout, the better chance of that. I make sure I have the cue sheet and printed map for when I find myself riding on my own. I look at it this way, It's someplace new and different to ride. To be fair, most of these rides are 40+ miles out in farm country. They expect you to be able to hold your own if you show up for one of these. The club does have a monthly beginners & causal ride around the lake and someone will always stay with the slower member.

I've found some other groups to ride with recently, however. (A tip of the helmet to Doohickie for that) Some of them really are no drop casual rides, though there is a lower limit. My wife is not able to keep up on even the slowest one yet, but she's making progress.

I agree with the idea of starting a Facebook group. You may get a lot of participation.
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Old 10-02-12, 10:53 AM   #20
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Maybe see if your 'really local' lbs will let you post a flyer? That may work better than CL.
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Old 10-02-12, 11:01 AM   #21
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Maybe see if your 'really local' lbs will let you post a flyer? That may work better than CL.
Good idea. Originate the ride at that LBS to help draw business. They may want to help more that way.
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Old 10-02-12, 11:03 AM   #22
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Maybe see if your 'really local' lbs will let you post a flyer? That may work better than CL.
+1 as there may be others like you who are seeking people to ride with that fit their riding style and ability.
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Old 10-02-12, 12:08 PM   #23
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I have been riding for several years and I will never be able to keep up with the groups that ride in my area. So I just ride by myself. It would be interesting to ride with others but when it comes down to it I can ride by myself.

I went a couple of times and rode with a no drop group. The route was out 8 miles and back. I enjoyed the ride but it was not a ride where we were in a group. Everyone just rode their own speed and then there was a sweep rider or we just checked back in at the shop so that no one would be left out on the road. I wouldn't know how to act with someone riding close to me. I would probably be very nervous expecting to be bumped or for me to bump them. I guess that it is something that you have to get accustomed to. Also as I learned the capabilities of the other riders, I would probably feel more at ease.

Others have made some great suggestions on how to find someone to ride with but remember all you have to do is get on the bike and pedal.
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Old 10-02-12, 12:28 PM   #24
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Well lets just say they are NOT beginner friendly. They call them self family oriented but have NOTHING for the younger riders.
Have you actually gone to one or more of their easier-rated rides? I wouldn't just go by what some of the people at the meeting said about getting dropped if you don't have a road bike. Show up for a few rides and see for yourself. At worst you do get left behind and end up doing the ride by yourself - which is what you're doing now anyway. But you may well find that there are others riding at a comfortable pace for you.
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Old 10-02-12, 01:53 PM   #25
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Have you actually gone to one or more of their easier-rated rides? I wouldn't just go by what some of the people at the meeting said about getting dropped if you don't have a road bike. Show up for a few rides and see for yourself. At worst you do get left behind and end up doing the ride by yourself - which is what you're doing now anyway. But you may well find that there are others riding at a comfortable pace for you.
This. The only potential downside is if you're unfamiliar with the route. Otherwise you've lost nothing.
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