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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 07-16-13, 10:00 PM   #1
luvdemtigers
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1st post with questions

First of all, I am going to announce up front that I am a clyde. This is truth. I am getting into riding to NOT be a clyde, and this is truth. The point is, I want to lose about 100 pounds. Now, knowing that, I have a few questions of you guys -

My bike is a Trek 7000 and it is heavy. Would it behoove me try to lighten this puppy up a bit? Im asking because I ride it (just started today) and my legs just seem to not wanna push after about a half mile. Its like they turn to rubber and I get frustrated as hell and just wanna quit. Would lightening the bike up a bit help or should I just HTFU and try to push through this? Is it the weight of the bike or the weight of the rider that is doing this to me?

Also, if you were just starting at 310 pounds, what distances would you shoot for? Are there any types of training plans that will help me with the weight loss?

Thanks for any help!
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Old 07-16-13, 10:09 PM   #2
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1st post with questions

Ok this is coming from a relatively skinny guy....first 10 mile ride, back when I was 24 made my legs feel like rubber. It's muscle memory, your legs aren't used to it. If you loose 5 lbs, that's like buying a 2,000 carbon road bike! My suggestion would be keep pedaling! Get a good cyclco computer would be my only advice, and keep your tire pressure at its max rated. Pick a distance. Ride it. Add a mile the next day. Keep doing that until you feel you can't add another mile. Then add a mile weekly. Eat right. The fewer legs an animal had the healthier it is. Cows, chicken fish. The fewer ingredients something has, the better it is for you....and drink lots of water.
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Old 07-16-13, 10:11 PM   #3
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Riding long distance is not easy.

Take short rides until your body adapts to your bike.

I found that 5 miles at one ride worked best for me.
Now I can ride 500 miles in one week.

Loosing weight is about food intake.

Ride much, rest when you need days off.

Ask more questions when you have some.

Everyone here will be happy to help you.
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Old 07-16-13, 10:16 PM   #4
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Guess I just need to try to push through it. Thanks guys!
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Old 07-16-13, 10:17 PM   #5
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Welcome and congrats on your bike!

Was your ride flat? Hilly? paved?

Are you using your gears correctly? i only ask this because when i bought my first hybrid, a big old heavy comfort bike, I really didn't know how to use the gears and I HATED that bike. But once I learned how to shift correctly to make pedaling easier when necessary, I eventually progressed up to riding it 20 miles.

I wouldn't worry so much about how far you can ride right now. Maybe just shoot for 20 min...something like that and just go a little farther every few days. What is your general conditioning? It's really not unusual for a new rider to get tired pretty quickly. Some folks on here will tell you they rode about the same amount as you in the beginning and were totally exhausted.

I think just keep at it. Also, make sure you are drinking plenty. This crazy heat can make anything seem difficult. Not sure if you really have many options for "lightening" the bike up...but I bet if you just keep working at it, you'll be flying in no time

Oh, also, this sounds totally stupid...but do check to make sure your brakes aren't rubbing against your tires, and the tires are inflated properly. I spent a few hours cursing at myself and my bike once b/c I was riding so slow, only to realize later that the brakes were rubbing. another ride equally sucked becuase of the inflation issue...
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Old 07-16-13, 10:20 PM   #6
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Welcome and congrats on your bike!

Was your ride flat? Hilly? paved?
Hey Penny! The ride I did today was decently flat and paved. Maybe a slight incline as I rode. I seriously made it about 1/2 mile and had to stop. I was POOPED! Gonna go out tomorrow and see if I can do it all over again.
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Old 07-16-13, 10:24 PM   #7
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That 's the spirit

How do you feel with shifting? Maybe try a lower gear?

Also, is your seat too low?
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Old 07-16-13, 10:27 PM   #8
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When I got the bike, they did a basic fitting (free) so the seat is here it should be. Im getting used to shifting.
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Old 07-16-13, 10:42 PM   #9
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Use the next lower gear than you think you need.
It's much easier to spin free & easy, than to push hard. You'll last much longer.

Chances are the tires on your bike are kind of "slugs".
Max the pressure and see if that helps.
Going to a smaller size with a bit higher pressure would help.

When I got my hybrid, it had 35mm tires on it. They had unbelievable rolling resistance for a "road" tread. Something you often find in a tire that's designed for puncture resistance.
I put on a set of 28mm's the next day and the difference was amazing.
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Old 07-16-13, 11:00 PM   #10
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Hey Penny! The ride I did today was decently flat and paved. Maybe a slight incline as I rode. I seriously made it about 1/2 mile and had to stop. I was POOPED! Gonna go out tomorrow and see if I can do it all over again.
I bet you'll get a mile tomorrow. And then a mile and a half the day after that. Before you know it, you'll routinely be doing easy ten milers.

Welcome to the forum.

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Old 07-16-13, 11:11 PM   #11
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I'm new to this too and my first few rides went like your until I read on here that I was trying to do it all wrong. I was riding in the wrong gear and at about the mile to mile and a half mark when I hit muscle fatigue I was done. It was miserable and I was ready to quit. I learned just to ride in a easier gear and peddle faster (spinning instead of mashing) and now I can ride farther and it is even enjoyable. If your legs are burning shift to easier gears, if you are peddling like a windmill in a tornado shift to harder gears, your body will tell you what gear is right. It's one of those more gain with the less pain deals. It will still take time to build up your endurance, but you can do it.
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Old 07-17-13, 12:03 AM   #12
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Start with time rather than distance. 20 minutes then gradually increase the duration until you are up to 45-60 minutes. Only then start increasing effort. Your body needs time to adjust to both the bike and riding it. Keep it slow and easy at the beginning. You will make gains in fitness the fastest at the beginning.
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Old 07-17-13, 06:23 AM   #13
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I'm a ~300kb clyde that started cycling about 3 weeks ago and the first couple of days 2-4 km felt exhausting. Trying to use lower gears and pedaling faster helped, and riding every day since I got my bike has helped more. I'm now doing 11-15km every day and loving it.

It's just a matter of taking your time and building up slowly. The most important thing is to have FUN, because as long as your having fun you'll want to keep doing it.
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Old 07-17-13, 06:34 AM   #14
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Granted I started our bigger then you but for awhile a 2 mile ride took me 20 min. I would have to stop multiple times and was exhausted! You will build up your stamina the more you ride, so don't give up faith. Also, I always over-inflate my tires by 5-10psi, it makes it a rough ride but rolls much easier.
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Old 07-17-13, 11:04 AM   #15
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If your bike is in good working order your bike is not what's keeping you from riding further than a mile.

Just about everybody here has one of those "Holy cats I can't even ride a mile" type stories, you're not the only one. Enjoy your current bike until you feel like rewarding yourself with a new one.
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Old 07-17-13, 11:38 AM   #16
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I seriously made it about 1/2 mile and had to stop.
Congratulations on the successful ride! Looking forward to hearing stories of many more!
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Old 07-17-13, 01:41 PM   #17
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first thing I want to express is that I am also a larger sized rider. I also ride a "heavier" mountain bike for several reasons. 1st of all, mountain/hybrids are sturdier by design to handle jumps and drops, this makes them a better and safer choice for us larger riders, be it on the road or on the trail. 2nd, they will last a bit longer because they can deal with our heavier weight load, and the mountain components will hold up better to the daily abuse, where a more "finesse" road bike will break down more often due to stress. 3rd, mountain bike wheels are wider and double walled, again providing more sturdiness. lastly, a few pounds, or even grams, in some cases, will not really make a big difference to riders like you and me, where we can lose several pounds in water weight during a single ride! i feel like the added weight of a mountain/hybrid bike actually helps me improve my fitness, although it won't make me the fastest rider on the road or trail. so, in my opinion, you already have the right type of bike until you get down to 150 pounds and want to try the Tour De France.

okay, with that said, i'd like to also add that I switched the tires on my mountain bike from the original stock 2.2 inch aggressive knobbies, to a more "slick" road tread tire. the reason is, the thinner road tire was more appropriate for my daily rides, it was MUCH easier to push, and it was also Kevlar belted to prevent road flats. so, if your tires are really wide, I would suggest going to a thinner and less aggressive tread as one quick way to make pushing your bike on the road a bit easier. good luck and best wishes. ride safe!

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Old 07-17-13, 02:10 PM   #18
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I have a road bike that clocks in around 22 lbs and a mountain bike that weights around 27... the bike I ride most is my commuter - an old Specialized Rockhopper that I've added racks etc. I think it weighs around 32 lbs with all my gear and clothing, maybe 50 lbs.

I have done the same 50 miles with each of these bikes...the road bike was the most comfortable, initially, and I got my fastest time, but after 30 miles, my back, neck and private parts began hurting.

The mountain bike, although light, is not made for road with its knobby tires. That was my slowest time and I have to admit, my most exhausting ride.

The commuter? Not only was my time OK (not much slower than the road bike) but I was comnfortable throughout the ride.

It's not the weight of the bike that is the issue - its the fitness of the rider and the combination of components and tires. I am a good 50, maybe 100 lbs overweight so the last thing i worry about is the weight of my bike. Good gosh even with the best wheels or top of the line components I can only increase weight savings by 4 - 5 lbs. In the scheme of things when I am trying to move along an additional 100 lbs of body fat, that ain't nothing!

So the key is to just ride - ride whatever you have no matter how much it weighs. Consider it as part of the exercise. At some point if you lose enough weight and decide to stay with the sport, and you buy a better, lighter bike, than you will be all that much stronger and be able to go much farther.

I remember many years ago when I did my first 10 mile ride... I thought that was an incredible distance... then 25, 50, 62 and 100 and farther... just stay with it. As your fitness increases the weight of the bike will not matter...
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Old 07-17-13, 02:54 PM   #19
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Welcome to BF! You're in the right place to lose weight and increase your fitness level.

IMO, you got the best answers above. My first ride was less than one mile and I was hurting. Now, three years later, a decent week is ~125 . Just keep riding and having fun.
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Old 07-17-13, 07:54 PM   #20
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You guys ROCK! Thanks for not making me feel like an outsider looking in!
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Old 07-17-13, 08:20 PM   #21
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You guys ROCK! Thanks for not making me feel like an outsider looking in!
Only if you quit riding! Congratulations on the start.

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Old 07-17-13, 09:21 PM   #22
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Start with time rather than distance. 20 minutes then gradually increase the duration until you are up to 45-60 minutes. Only then start increasing effort. Your body needs time to adjust to both the bike and riding it. Keep it slow and easy at the beginning. You will make gains in fitness the fastest at the beginning.
This, seriously! Try working up to 45 minutes on the bike, then 60 minutes. Pay attention to your body. Do your legs hurt? You butt, your hands, your feet? Each of these areas can be addressed until nothing is stopping you from riding 60, 90, or 120 minutes. Then, start working on riding faster, harder and eventually, longer.
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Old 07-18-13, 03:23 AM   #23
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Do not HTFU but easeTFU. Your body is telling you what it can do today so go with it. When I started riding, I could only go 100 yards before I would have to stop and take a break. It took two weeks before I could ride a mile without having to stop.

If you will be patient and gentle with yourself and celebrate what you did and not criticize what you can't do, you will be much happier and feel like riding your bike. Celebrate the journey and the destination will come. Keep a positive attitude and never beat yourself up over how far, how fast, or how much weight you are losing. All things will come in the fullness of time.

Relax, Ride, and Enjoy.
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Old 07-18-13, 11:33 AM   #24
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Do not HTFU but easeTFU. Your body is telling you what it can do today so go with it. When I started riding, I could only go 100 yards before I would have to stop and take a break. It took two weeks before I could ride a mile without having to stop.

If you will be patient and gentle with yourself and celebrate what you did and not criticize what you can't do, you will be much happier and feel like riding your bike. Celebrate the journey and the destination will come. Keep a positive attitude and never beat yourself up over how far, how fast, or how much weight you are losing. All things will come in the fullness of time.

Relax, Ride, and Enjoy.

+1
I feel very zen after reading this
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