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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 04-26-13, 04:57 PM   #1
Wooden Tiger
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A bit...perplexed.

So today I got out on the roadie for 12.2 miles and averaged 11.7 mph, give or take a few tenths...

...I'm puzzled, to say the least. I've been really concentrating on riding more and have been doing a fair share of rides at the C&O Canal, which doesn't have hardly any elevation changes, but the pedaling is constant. I went out today on the roadie and expected to see some sort of "reward" for my efforts in terms of an easier time out there but that was not the case. Instead, I was welcomed with sheer disappointment. We have a pretty nice sized hill in the neighborhood which I figured I was going to climb with aplomb, but it was anything but. I was winded, my legs felt wobbly, and it just took it out of me. What gives? I don't have this issue on my MTB, so why the roadie? Aren't roadies supposed to be faster/easier to pedal? How come I can ride harder on my MTB than what I can on a roadie?
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Old 04-26-13, 05:03 PM   #2
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Hills are different. If you're not used to them, and haven't been training for them by riding at the sort of intensity they require, you're going to be slower. The weight advantage conferred by a road bike is trivial by comparison.
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Old 04-26-13, 05:08 PM   #3
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Not sure if this is applicable but gearing on MTB and Road Bike very different.
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Old 04-26-13, 05:49 PM   #4
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Hills are different. If you're not used to them, and haven't been training for them by riding at the sort of intensity they require, you're going to be slower. The weight advantage conferred by a road bike is trivial by comparison.
I guess I was just expecting to have a little bit more muscle development and be able to climb the hill a little easier than what I did. It was just...disappointing.
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Old 04-26-13, 05:57 PM   #5
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Bikes target different muscles from differnt angles as well. Give yourself time to adjust. You are going form MTB to roadie, that is a big difference in position and angles.

Heck, I went form one roadie, Cannondale to a Lemond, felt like some one was stabbing me straight on the glutes for the first few rides. It took me some time to adapt from one roadie to another. One is an aggressive crit American racing bike and the other a Euro road race type, it makes a difference.

One good example is Gina, She averaged about 13 on her hybrid. She switched to a roadie and didn't see much difference first few rides. She didn't want to ride the roadie. I had to fight with her to give it a chance. After a couple of months, her average went up from 13-14 to her best of 18 over 42 flat miles.


---------------

Another thing, keep pushing yourself close to your limit. Don't need to go all out but keep yourself challenged if even for some of your ride. Some people expect to make big gains by riding at the same intensity mile after mile. Throw in some intervals, if even 2 or 3. As you get better, throw in 5 or 6.

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Old 04-26-13, 06:15 PM   #6
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Gina, She averaged about 23 on her hybrid.
Was that with a tail wind?
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Old 04-26-13, 06:16 PM   #7
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Fit can have an effect too, maybe you have it dialed in better on your MTB.
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Old 04-26-13, 06:27 PM   #8
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Bikes target different muscles from differnt angles as well. Give yourself time to adjust. You are going form MTB to roadie, that is a big difference in position and angles.

Heck, I went form one roadie, Cannondale to a Lemond, felt like some one was stabbing me straight on the glutes for the first few rides. It took me some time to adapt from one roadie to another. One is an aggressive crit American racing bike and the other a Euro road race type, it makes a difference.

One good example is Gina, She averaged about 23 on her hybrid. She switched to a roadie and didn't see much difference first few rides. She didn't want to ride the roadie. I had to fight with her to give it a chance. After a couple of months, her average went up from 13-14 to her best of 18 over 42 flat miles.


---------------

Another thing, keep pushing yourself close to your limit. Don't need to go all out but keep yourself challenged if even for some of your ride. Some people expect to make big gains by riding at the same intensity mile after mile. Throw in some intervals, if even 2 or 3. As you get better, throw in 5 or 6.
Wow, that's awesome for Gina! I guess it's just strange that an MTB would be so much easier to ride than a roadie in terms of strength. I'd expect the opposite given the aerodynamics, thinner tires (less drag), lighter weight, and "optimal" gearing for the road.

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I live in harpers ferry!

Let me know (pm?) if you want to do a small group ride sometime. Plenty of hills out my way, or between boonsboro and sharpsburg, or pretty much all over Appalachia.

I'm slow too, or maybe too slow, but either way if you would like to invite ms for a group ride I'd be happy to join.
Hey, sounds like a plan. You need to contact the Panhandle Peddlers, they're a great bunch and my wife and I belong to the club.

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Was that with a tail wind?
No wind at all.
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Old 04-26-13, 06:34 PM   #9
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I live in harpers ferry!

Let me know (pm?) if you want to do a small group ride sometime. Plenty of hills out my way, or between boonsboro and sharpsburg, or pretty much all over Appalachia.

I'm slow too, or maybe too slow, but either way if you would like to invite ms for a group ride I'd be happy to join.
I'm in Middletown, I'd be up for something like that.
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Old 04-26-13, 07:02 PM   #10
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I'm in Middletown, I'd be up for something like that.
This sounds like a plan! Anyone ride the C&O Canal in Shepherdstown or just on the road?

I think a group ride would be fun but I must mention my wife and I don't ride on the public highways. We've both tried it and just don't feel comfortable doing it for a variety of reasons. If it's along a path somewhere, we're all for it!
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Old 04-26-13, 08:13 PM   #11
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Given a grade, your weight and the power you can sustain for the duration of the climb, there will be a resulting speed. Now, your gearing needs to be such that you can go at a sustainable cadence at that resulting speed.

Have you got any idea where you are in terms of power output and what is required to climb that hill with the gearing you have?
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Old 04-26-13, 10:04 PM   #12
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Was that with a tail wind?
Oh Daqg it! MY typing sucks, it was 13 mph
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Old 04-26-13, 10:05 PM   #13
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Wow, that's awesome for Gina! I guess it's just strange that an MTB would be so much easier to ride than a roadie in terms of strength. I'd expect the opposite given the aerodynamics, thinner tires (less drag), lighter weight, and "optimal" gearing for the road.



Hey, sounds like a plan. You need to contact the Panhandle Peddlers, they're a great bunch and my wife and I belong to the club.



No wind at all.
To be clear, my typing sucks, she did 13 on the hybrid


stupid typing!
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Old 04-26-13, 10:50 PM   #14
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Oh Daqg it! MY typing sucks, it was 13 mph
We know Gina and totally believed it.
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Old 04-26-13, 10:53 PM   #15
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As mentioned above, different bikes develop muscles differently. My roadie builds taller leg muscles to me and don't do much to work my core. My MTB builds broader leg muscles and my stomach stays trimmer. IMO roadie bikes create lots less pedalling resistance and you can get greater speeds for long periods. But there is nothing like MTBing for fun and loosing yourself. I think that Sprints and intervals happen naturally on a MTB. You have to create them on a road bike.
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Old 04-27-13, 04:44 AM   #16
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Given a grade, your weight and the power you can sustain for the duration of the climb, there will be a resulting speed. Now, your gearing needs to be such that you can go at a sustainable cadence at that resulting speed.

Have you got any idea where you are in terms of power output and what is required to climb that hill with the gearing you have?
No clue what my power output is but it clearly isn't enough! All I know is that this hill gave me absolute hell (it didn't when I was doing more road biking a few seasons ago). A few seasons ago I was doing far more road biking and after a while it wasn't too bad, but last night just totally stuffed me.

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As mentioned above, different bikes develop muscles differently. My roadie builds taller leg muscles to me and don't do much to work my core. My MTB builds broader leg muscles and my stomach stays trimmer. IMO roadie bikes create lots less pedalling resistance and you can get greater speeds for long periods. But there is nothing like MTBing for fun and loosing yourself. I think that Sprints and intervals happen naturally on a MTB. You have to create them on a road bike.
Yes, there is less resistance with my road bike, but that's only until I hit a good climb. I used my MTB last week on the same exact hill I had problems with last night and the MTB climbed it like a mountain goat; it was effortless. Just the whole ordeal makes me wanna throw my roadie in a dumpster, strap my hybrid tires back on my MTB, and call it a day. IMO, it's absolutely pointless to have a nice, light, carbon road bike that weighs barely 20 lbs if I can achieve greater results on a bike that not only outweighs it by at least seven pounds but isn't even designed for the road, all with nothing more than swapping out a set of tires. It's faster, easier to climb, and on the hybrid tires it damned near handles just as well.

Yeah, I'm sure I'm coming across as a whiny crybaby who's spinning around in the living room with my arms flailing, right before I start doing "helicopters" on the floor, but it just really irritates me that I can achieve far better results on a big ol' behemoth that I can't achieve on a roadie. It's like driving a Ferrari and then being outshined on the Nurburgring by a Chevy Silverado.
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Old 04-27-13, 06:03 AM   #17
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Yes, there is less resistance with my road bike, but that's only until I hit a good climb. I used my MTB last week on the same exact hill I had problems with last night and the MTB climbed it like a mountain goat; it was effortless. Just the whole ordeal makes me wanna throw my roadie in a dumpster, strap my hybrid tires back on my MTB, and call it a day. IMO, it's absolutely pointless to have a nice, light, carbon road bike that weighs barely 20 lbs if I can achieve greater results on a bike that not only outweighs it by at least seven pounds but isn't even designed for the road, all with nothing more than swapping out a set of tires. It's faster, easier to climb, and on the hybrid tires it damned near handles just as well.
If you can climb it on your mountain bike, but not your road bike, that suggests that your road bike isn't geared low enough. What is the gearing on your road bike? What about your mountain bike.

Light for bicycles is over-rated. It is total rider + bike weight and unless any of us start attaching a large number of helium balloons, a few pounds difference is a very small effect.

Oh, yeah. One last point:

"Hills suck. Go climb hills" - The Recumbent Quant

No matter what you do, hills are going to suck. The more you climb them, however, any given hill will start to get smaller and suck less. But don't worry. There will always be hills out there that still suck a lot.
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Old 04-27-13, 06:36 AM   #18
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If you can climb it on your mountain bike, but not your road bike, that suggests that your road bike isn't geared low enough. What is the gearing on your road bike? What about your mountain bike.

Light for bicycles is over-rated. It is total rider + bike weight and unless any of us start attaching a large number of helium balloons, a few pounds difference is a very small effect.

Oh, yeah. One last point:

"Hills suck. Go climb hills" - The Recumbent Quant

No matter what you do, hills are going to suck. The more you climb them, however, any given hill will start to get smaller and suck less. But don't worry. There will always be hills out there that still suck a lot.
I agree there will always be hills that suck but how can one hill suck so bad on one bike and not suck on another?
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Old 04-27-13, 07:51 AM   #19
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Your not alone. I was riding a comfort hybred with 26" wheels for about 9 years I could do anything on that thing it worked well for me. End of last summer I got a Specialized Tricrosss not exactly a road bike but I use it as one. Ironiclly the middle chainring is the same as the large one on the comfort bike which I used exclusively on the comfort bike and 4 or 5 of the cogs have the same teeth so I thought the switch would be unnoticable, boy was I wrong. I used the comfort bike for the sloppy roads and tails of fall and spring just selling it 2 weeks ago.

I am getting similar results right now with the 2 bikes, actually would get about 50 watt average higher on the comfort bike (strava estimated) but a bit higher top speed and slightly more average. Hills are a wash not a big change there since I got stiff shoes that dont flex even OTS mashing up hills (if yor using flexiable street shoes I cant recommend cycle shoes enough especially for hills) and similarities of the gearing. With the shoes my feet are ever so pigeon toes so my inner thighs scream, as I never used my inner thighs much before. Body position is totally different not quite tabletop flat back but not kite in the wind straight up as I was mostly on the comfort.

Shoot im rambling, ok long story short probably your dealing with massive changes on body positioning, pedal stroke and misc differances. It WILL hurt like hell as you condition the new muscles just remember rule 5 and you will be faster and more powerful soon!
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Old 04-27-13, 08:05 AM   #20
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Your not alone. I was riding a comfort hybred with 26" wheels for about 9 years I could do anything on that thing it worked well for me. End of last summer I got a Specialized Tricrosss not exactly a road bike but I use it as one. Ironiclly the middle chainring is the same as the large one on the comfort bike which I used exclusively on the comfort bike and 4 or 5 of the cogs have the same teeth so I thought the switch would be unnoticable, boy was I wrong. I used the comfort bike for the sloppy roads and tails of fall and spring just selling it 2 weeks ago.

I am getting similar results right now with the 2 bikes, actually would get about 50 watt average higher on the comfort bike (strava estimated) but a bit higher top speed and slightly more average. Hills are a wash not a big change there since I got stiff shoes that dont flex even OTS mashing up hills (if yor using flexiable street shoes I cant recommend cycle shoes enough especially for hills) and similarities of the gearing. With the shoes my feet are ever so pigeon toes so my inner thighs scream, as I never used my inner thighs much before. Body position is totally different not quite tabletop flat back but not kite in the wind straight up as I was mostly on the comfort.

Shoot im rambling, ok long story short probably your dealing with massive changes on body positioning, pedal stroke and misc differances. It WILL hurt like hell as you condition the new muscles just remember rule 5 and you will be faster and more powerful soon!
Well, now that everyone's mentioning it, I have thought about it and my posture on my roadie is far more different than that of my posture on my MTB. It does make sense that I'd be using a different muscle group. With the roadie I feel it more in my upper legs than lower legs, just the opposite from my MTB.
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Old 04-27-13, 09:55 AM   #21
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I am curious as to gears on both your MTB and road bike.

For example here are the cranks and cassette on my MTB
Crankset Shimano Alivio, 42/34/24 teeth
Rear Cogs 7-speed, 11 - 28 teeth

My hybrid
Crank Shimano M171, 48/38/28 w/chainguard
Cassette Shimano HG40 11-32, 8 speed

my roadbike
Crank Shimano R565, 50/34 (compact)
Cassette Shimano Tiagra 12-30, 10 speed

MTB are designed to climb mountain trails so gears are set up that way and might explain why it felt like it didn't require the effort the road bike does.

and as others mentioned body positioning plays a role and what muscles are being pressed,into,service.
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Old 04-27-13, 11:19 AM   #22
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Are both computers calibrated for your tire size?
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Old 04-27-13, 01:14 PM   #23
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Are both computers calibrated for your tire size?
this was my first thought... I ride running my GPS on my phone and recently added a speed sensor... apparently I need to re calibrate the sensor because it's almost 10% off after comparing the two after a ride.
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Old 04-27-13, 02:55 PM   #24
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Performance can vary from day to day as well. Rest, hydration, previous meals can all make a difference. Don't be so hard on yourself.
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Old 04-27-13, 02:55 PM   #25
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I agree there will always be hills that suck but how can one hill suck so bad on one bike and not suck on another?
Gears is the most obvious choice. If you aren't geared low enough on one bike, it might suck a whole lot more than another. Another possibility is that something about the positioning of the rider actually changes how much power he can produce. I don't think this is as likely as the gears, but definitely possible. Since you said you were zipping along very nicely except for hills on the road bike, again, this suggests gears to me.

Oh, yeah. Did I mention gears?

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