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  1. #1
    Senior Member JOHN J's Avatar
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    whats better conditioning SS or geared bike

    hello everyone,

    quick question although Im commuting im trying to get enough conditioning to do a metric in the near future. my normal commute is 19 mile or 13 mile depending on route.

    would I get more cardio benifit by riding the SS??, though I seem to spin out and coast alot (69 gear inch , very Hilly) The SS is my old road bike lugged 531 frame /fork Falcon . 1992 nice and light

    or should I keep riding my 35 LB 24 speed Full dresser cross check.

    many thanks

    "John"

    :
    Last edited by JOHN J; 04-24-07 at 12:50 PM.
    "No matter how hard the past you can always begin again today" Budda

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  2. #2
    45 miles/week Eggplant Jeff's Avatar
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    Wow this is gonna bust open a can of worms.

    I'd say convert your SS to FG and then use that if you're serious about getting conditioned.
    Treasurer, HHCMF Club
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  3. #3
    ****** squegeeboo's Avatar
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    I would think that cardio-wise a geared bike would be better, because you can switch gears to keep a high cadence at all times.

    But if your regularly doing a 19 mile commute, your conditioned well enough to do a metric century.
    In the words of Einstein
    "And now I think I'll take a bath"

  4. #4
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    without a doubt single speed, i,ve ridden a ss downhill bike with monstor tires and bmx to work and on rides. downhill bike in ss make you strong like hans & franz. you may not get their till halloween but you be strong.

  5. #5
    Zinophile tibikefor2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eggplant Jeff
    Wow this is gonna bust open a can of worms.

    I'd say convert your SS to FG and then use that if you're serious about getting conditioned.
    +1
    Tibikefor2

  6. #6
    Senior Member rykoala's Avatar
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    I say fixed gear also. I have been riding fixed for about 2 years and whenever I get on a geared bike or a freewheeling bike I feel like its just cheating.

  7. #7
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    Either one will do fine. I've ridden fixed and single speed a lot the last couple of years. The key is variety whether you have one gear or many. What bike will you be doing the metric on? If it is one of these, then I would primarily ride that one on your commutes. I love my Cross-Check so much, that I've stopped riding my fixed & my single speed. So on some days I'll use a small gear & spin & other days a bigger gear & grind at a low cadence. I'll do intervals and some sprints to add variety on my commutes.

  8. #8
    GATC
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    I would be curious what the long-distance and training mavens think about this.

    For me, I am convinced, purely anecdotally, no data or background theory to this at all, that all my bike-derived fitness started from spinning low gears and shifting up as my lungs and heart, not leg muscles, permitted.

  9. #9
    Tora Tora Tora Relaxer's Avatar
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    I've seen great improvement in my road-cycling ever since I switched from riding my geared commuter to a fixed, to work.

  10. #10
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Geared with discipline or SS/FG with pleasure.

    Al

  11. #11
    bac
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    A SS/Fixed will obviously get you in better shape faster. However, as stated, either will do for your goal of a metric century.

    ... Brad

  12. #12
    ♋ ☮♂ ☭ ☯ -=(8)=-'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by texasphil
    without a doubt single speed, idownhill bike in ss make you strong like hans & franz. .
    +100 !
    Definately

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by HardyWeinberg
    ...
    For me, I am convinced, purely anecdotally, no data or background theory to this at all, that all my bike-derived fitness started from spinning low gears and shifting up as my lungs and heart, not leg muscles, permitted.
    Also anecdotal, no data or background theory, it seems possible that pushing too hard too soon in the wrong gear might risk knee injury.

  14. #14
    ride for a change modernjess's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam
    Geared with discipline or SS/FG with pleasure.

    Al
    +1 With the SS/FG you don't have to think, just pedal.

  15. #15
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    A single speed gives no mercy when the road turns up or into the wind. Eliminate the freewheel and you have the added blessing/curse of no choice but to turn the pedals for every turn of the wheels.

    Fixed FTW!
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  16. #16
    Dances With Cars TRaffic Jammer's Avatar
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    Old school roadies would routinely get the tried-and-true fixed/ss gear for the spring base miles to spin the legs back into form. I'd never see a roadie going faster than a jog until May but their legs would be going a mile a minute.

  17. #17
    M_S
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    I'm just wondering how in the world your cross check is 35 pounds?

  18. #18
    Senior Member JOHN J's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by M_S
    I'm just wondering how in the world your cross check is 35 pounds?
    I have to qualify the satement It weighs alot when loaded for my normal commute

    but Its a decked out commute/light touring all weather machine so it heavy from all the beefy components.

    velocity dyad rims 40 spoke rear 36 spoke front

    Triple chain ring

    32 cm wide tires with tuffy strips

    brooks B17 flyer (sprung) "heavy for a saddle"

    full ( spliced 2 fenders, extra long) fenders with very long leather mudflaps (company I work for sells industrial belting.

    Nitto 48Cm noodles with cork tape and a layer of cloth shellacked

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    battery pack (heavy)

    heavy 2 legged kickstand. (love the kickstand)

    I Also carry rain gear most of the time

    its a full dresser commute beast comfy , Comfy, comfy but yes heavy.

    Again The 35 LB is fully loaded with bottles clothes ...

    "John"
    Last edited by JOHN J; 04-24-07 at 01:00 PM.
    "No matter how hard the past you can always begin again today" Budda

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  19. #19
    hello roadfix's Avatar
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    Be a cool commuter. Run that thing fixed.

  20. #20
    DNPAIMFB pinkrobe's Avatar
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    FG/SS FTW! I tricked -- er, convinced my buddy to convert his old road bike for daily commutes. Yesterday, he pulled into work with dry heaves because he was trying to race some guy on a mtn bike. Riding SS all through the winter has made my legs pretty f-ing strong, and it has paid dividends on my geared road bike. At least, I hope so, since I haven't hooked up my speedometer yet.
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  21. #21
    Senior Member
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    Which ever one is harder.
    If you are doing a fixed number of miles the less efficient bike will cause you to work harder to complete those miles.
    A fixie is often going to be harder than a similar quality geared bike, however a SS DH bike is going to be a beast.
    Craig

  22. #22
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    And don't forget the chicks. Chicks dig fixies.
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  23. #23
    Commuter First newbojeff's Avatar
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    The answer is fixed gear...and I don't ride one. Hope to build one this spring/summer.

    I'd also add that I ride 15 miles RT through hilly terrain for my commute every day. You will have no problem ripping off a metric century (especially if you are already doing 40 mile daily commutes. Your post doesn't say if your milage is one-way or RT). I did my first a few months ago.

  24. #24
    B.C. to D.C.
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    maybe I just have glue for bearing grease, but I actually find myself puffing harder on a geared bike than a fixie.

    I just get lazy with my pedalstroke on a fixie when I can let my momentum push my crank around. With a freewheeling bike, I have to haul it up and around all the time. When I transition between the two, I'll have pedaling "gaps" on the freewheel where I've let the fixie momentum do the work. I also tend to go as fast as I can, which on my fixie tops out (43X13), but on the gearie I can almost always be going faster. I guess I could up the gear ratio but then my knees might explode. They are already at the limit.

    One thing that riding fixed does well is get you in the habit of always having the pedals in motion.

  25. #25
    Seņior Member ItsJustMe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JOHN J
    quick question although Im commuting im trying to get enough conditioning to do a metric in the near future. my normal commute is 19 mile or 13 mile depending on route.
    Hell, don't even worry about it. I do a 20 mile daily commute, and one day last year they did an off-site breakfast meeting 35 miles from my house. I rode there and back again, 70 miles (112 KM) round trip. I was back by about 1PM including a 2.5 hour meeting in the middle, and it didn't bother me at all. I wasn't sore and I got back in the saddle for my normal commute the next morning without trouble.

    I think anyone who's riding 20 miles daily can do 60 miles any time they feel like it and have the time, if they don't try to do it more than once a week or so.

    This summer I plan to ride to my mom's house in a day; it's 129 miles, and honestly I'm not really planning on "training" - I'm just going to pack some sandwiches and water and a credit card and phone and just go.
    Work: the 8 hours that separates bike rides.

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