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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 03-20-14, 08:35 AM   #1
copswithguns 
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First true group ride yesterday

Well I went to a local club's group ride yesterday. First real group ride since I started cycling in August of last year. I THOUGHT this was the beginner's ride, but I was sadly mistaken. I hung in for 6 or 7 solid miles of medium and then fast paced riding, then fell out. I didn't feel too bad as 12 miles in I saw that only 6 or so of the original 22 riders were still in the main pack. Others had fallen back as well and I was able to catch up to the back end of the group on the return (tailwind). Overall, the hardest peddling I've ever had to do and a great work out. I basically got smoked and dropped by several 40-60 year olds; I'm 30 (bravo to those guys and gals).

Found out the beginner's ride (no-drop) is on Mondays so I'll probably hit that one up next week. The good news was no flats, no crashes, and I was really worried about how well I'd be able to close gaps and keep on someone's wheel at 20+mph but it actually wasn't that hard. Oh, and I was easily 75lbs heavier than anyone there, so more weight loss will obviously help.
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Old 03-20-14, 08:37 AM   #2
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Congrats. Go enjoy the Monday ride, but don't shy away from the Wednesday ride either. Riding with stronger riders will make you stronger, too.
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Old 03-20-14, 08:42 AM   #3
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Congratulations. That is a big step. I read a book a couple of years ago, "Heft on Wheels" written by a guy who lost a ton of weight through some serious road riding.
Heft on Wheels: A Field Guide to Doing a 180 by Mike Magnuson | Barnes & Noble
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Old 03-20-14, 09:01 AM   #4
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Congratulations. That is a big step. I read a book a couple of years ago, "Heft on Wheels" written by a guy who lost a ton of weight through some serious road riding.
Heft on Wheels: A Field Guide to Doing a 180 by Mike Magnuson | Barnes & Noble
Wow thanks for the find MRT. That's basically what I'm trying to do, though I already quit smoking a few years ago. I just bought this on my iPad
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Old 03-21-14, 08:51 AM   #5
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Aren't group rides great? When I did my first one, I felt like I'd entered a whole new dimension of cycling. Congratulations on getting out there and doing it! I help organize a weekly ride made up of two groups, one faster, and one a developmental group. We have so much fun it's the high point of my week.
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Old 03-21-14, 09:17 AM   #6
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Aren't group rides great? When I did my first one, I felt like I'd entered a whole new dimension of cycling. Congratulations on getting out there and doing it! I help organize a weekly ride made up of two groups, one faster, and one a developmental group. We have so much fun it's the high point of my week.
I started doing group rides last year for the first time ever. I was mostly just hanging on, but once I showed up and did it, I was surprised to find that riders of many different levels showed up for these rides, and that I wasn't the weakest rider. In fact, somewhat surprisingly, after riding with a club of mostly strong riders (and mostly working hard not to get dropped), I showed up for a different group ride labeled as a social ride where I was one of the strongest riders in the group.
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Old 03-21-14, 10:22 AM   #7
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Congratulations! I am going to seek out a few group rides in my area. My only issue is that I'll need them to be at 5am. I don't know if any gather then.

Nice rides tough and you should be proud of yourself!
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Old 03-21-14, 10:50 AM   #8
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The first ride with a fast group definitely ads perspective. Even if you think you ride hard solo you're still riding at your own pace. Being forced to ride at someone else's pace all of a sudden is an eye opener. It's the best way to faster.
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Old 03-21-14, 12:22 PM   #9
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congrats on jumping in there. If you are with the main pack at the mid way point, you might find the monday slow ride to be a bore. But good social time to get to know the guys n gals. Don't let the age card fool you, those guys are fast. They might not be attacking but they will sure as hell pull them back.

For the shorter group rides (sub 90 min), come warmed up. Only you know how much time you need but most of them will ride to the start and already have miles under the legs to get them opened up. I try to be on my bike 20+mins before the start of the ride to pedal around for a few miles either around the block or out n back. If not get ready for your HR to jump to LT in the first 5-10 minutes. Depending how the group is, mine like to attack then counter attacks, so I'd be at redline allot longer then it should be.

rinse and repeat as often as you can. Group dynamics is fun and addicting.
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Old 03-22-14, 06:31 PM   #10
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I have found a great group to ride with. Anyone who wants to can post on Facebook that they are going and see if anyone wants to join them. Then on Saturday or Sunday depending on what seems to work best for the majority and the weather they plan a group ride. We all meet at the local High School parking lot. We usually go 20-30 miles. There are some who are faster than average and sometimes they take off and get ahead. No one tries to kill themselves keeping up with them. If the new/slower riders get too far back someone usually circles back or we just stop and wait a minute or so. The slower are encouraged but not picked on. Everyone has fun. Some of this group have been riding together for several years. I joined them a few weeks ago and I already feel like one of the gang. I am about average or a little below so for me its challenging enough to keep me improving.

This is what I had hoped group riding would be like but was afraid it wouldn't be.
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