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  1. #1
    Senior Member NOS88's Avatar
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    Addicted to your computer?

    As a newbie I realize this may have been discussed before. So, forgive me if it's old stuff. In reading a few other posts related to learning to pace oneself on a ride and if the ride is for pleasure, fitness, etc... I realized that I've been addicted to that little screen sitting on my handle bars. It's most pathetic on my part. I look to see how fast I'm going, what the average speed is, how far I've gone, max speed, and must do this 20 times in a 25 mile ride. I think I'm gonna put some tape on the screen for the next few weeks and see what happens to the quality of my rides. Anyone else up for the experiment?

  2. #2
    I need more cowbell. Digital Gee's Avatar
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    Not me! I love my computer, and find it motivating, informative, and fun. I may or may not be "addicted," but I say what's the point of having it, if you don't want to look at it? I actually wish I could program mine to read out the mileage out loud, like my desk top tells me the time in fifteen minute intervals. Or maybe a bell would go off every time I hit a new personal best in speed.

    I love my computer!
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  3. #3
    Email for new group DnvrFox's Avatar
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    I enjoy my computer - it helps me set and gain my goals.

    I.e., I had a goal today of a 30 mile ride - and I hit it perfectly.

    I will set a goal of 35 miles on my next significant ride, and I will know when I am there.

    I don't happen to give a hoot about my average speed, but I do enjoy knowing my top speed.

    But, tape yours over if you like. The wonderful thing about bicycling is that we can all enjoy it in different ways with different emphases.
    Almost gone from the 50+ forum. - Email me at dnvrfox@aol.com for another fun new group of 50+ folks

  4. #4
    In Memory of One Cool Cat Blackberry's Avatar
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    I went many years without a computer--just enjoying long leisurely rides at whatever pace felt good on a given day.

    Then I got a computer. Then I started to time my rides. Then I started to do weekly self-created time trials. Then i started to ride farther. And faster. And faster. and farther.

    And then my back went to hell in a rowboat from pushing too damn hard (oh, and possibly from my outstanding stretching plan, which I engaged in once every year or two). That was last October. After a lot of physical therapy, I'm just starting to get back on the bike. The battery on my computer died during that time. I'm taking it as a sign. At least for awhile.
    Last edited by Blackberry; 03-06-06 at 06:01 PM.
    Dead last finish is better than did not finish and infinitely better than did not start.

  5. #5
    Senior Member NOS88's Avatar
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    I don't want to misrepresent myself. I too am concerned with progress in my cycling. It's why I wear a heart rate monitor. What I've realized is that it is a much better indicator of my workout level than my speed. Yet, I still get sucked into looking down to see how fast I'm going, and if I'm staying within my target heart range for the workout, speed doesn't really matter.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Old Hammer Boy's Avatar
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    In short, I just like my computer, my HRM, and my stoker enjoys our GPS. They're fun toys for amateur cyclists, and can supply interesting information. It's that simple...

  7. #7
    Senior Member Raketmensch's Avatar
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    Interesting topic. In most areas of my life I am a complete geek. When I ride on my trainer, I monitor my pedal cadence, compute my wattage, etc. etc. I've even got spreadsheets to keep track of everything. But so far I have resisted getting a computer for my bike. I don't feel that I've got a particularly well articulated reason for it, other than that I don't want to feel too addicted to/driven by the computer when I'm out riding on the road. While riding a trainer is just about the training process for me, riding on the road is something that I have always valued for its aesthetics. And I worry that having a computer might somehow change that.

    I could see this changing in the future, though, in large part because of some of the things I've read here. There's much that I admire about Gary's riding sensibilities, and if he says he loves his computer then that's a pretty strong endorsement in my book. So I may get one at some point.

    In fact, I just had an idea. I'm going to be spending most of next week in Houston. I've got meetings to go to, but I've also got some time on my hands. Today I called a bike shop in Houston and arranged to rent a nice Cannondale road bike while I'm down there... I just show up with shoes, pedals and a credit card and the bike is mine for four days.

    Sooo... maybe I should ask them to put a computer on the bike that I ride, to see how I like it. I think I may have just talked myself into something.

  8. #8
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    Hey! You just arranged for a decent rental bike in Houston? I travel a LOT and would like to do just that. Did you simply start calling bike shops? Ive checked on the 'net here with no luck and when i sauntered into a shop in San Diego, all they had was pretty crummy hybrids. (I rode it anyway ) Any help would be great.

  9. #9
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    I am addicted and I hate it. Love hate thing. It is all about maintaining average speed or beating the "goal" of the day. I even find myself doing the same thing in my car on long trips...

  10. #10
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NOS88
    As a newbie I realize this may have been discussed before. So, forgive me if it's old stuff. In reading a few other posts related to learning to pace oneself on a ride and if the ride is for pleasure, fitness, etc... I realized that I've been addicted to that little screen sitting on my handle bars. It's most pathetic on my part. I look to see how fast I'm going, what the average speed is, how far I've gone, max speed, and must do this 20 times in a 25 mile ride. I think I'm gonna put some tape on the screen for the next few weeks and see what happens to the quality of my rides. Anyone else up for the experiment?
    I seem to remember doing some computer gazing in the early days but taught myself to keep from watching that darn thing. It just seemed to diminish the enjoyment of a ride more than helping it. The worst times were when I might have the odometer set on distance for a longer ride and the miles just seemed to go by way too slowly. Instead of just motoring along I was constantly doing the math on how much longer it would take me to get to the finish.

    I now set my computer to cadence and will occasionally glance at it when I feel like I'm spinning too slowly.

    I might also take a peek when going down a steep hill just to see how fast I'm going. Nothing like setting a new speed record and being aware of when you're doing it!!

    It is helpful to watch the odometer if your on a new route you might be unfamiliar with to help be on the lookout for upcoming turns. Like others I collect the data after the ride to keep a log on overall results.

    But hey-if you enjoy keeping a watchful eye on the darn thing I say go for it!!

  11. #11
    Senior Member Dchiefransom's Avatar
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    Start doing frequent group rides with lots of women in tight lycra, you'll learn to set the computer at the start of the ride, and not pay attention to it until you're finished.
    Silver Eagle Pilot

  12. #12
    Senior Member Raketmensch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stevie47
    Hey! You just arranged for a decent rental bike in Houston? I travel a LOT and would like to do just that. Did you simply start calling bike shops? Ive checked on the 'net here with no luck and when i sauntered into a shop in San Diego, all they had was pretty crummy hybrids. (I rode it anyway ) Any help would be great.
    [HIJACK THREAD=on] I found a list of Houston bike shops at http://www.bikehouston.org. Picked one near the area where I'd be staying, called them up, and told them my tale of woe. Guy on the phone says he's got to check with the manager. Checks with the manager, calls me back in five minutes, it's a go. I provide the shoes, the pedals, and 25 bucks a day and I've got a nice road bike for the week. First shop I called... I just picked it for the location. Maybe I got lucky, but I did the same thing in Hawaii lately and it worked there too. Of course, if anything bad happens to the bike while I've got it it's on my credit card, but that's fair enough. [HIJACK THREAD=off]

    Back to computers...

  13. #13
    Senior Member NOS88's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=jppe]The worst times were when I might have the odometer set on distance for a longer ride and the miles just seemed to go by way too slowly. Instead of just motoring along I was constantly doing the math on how much longer it would take me to get to the finish. [QUOTE]


    jppe, you speak my mind much more eloquently than my attempts when getting this thread started.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Thrifty1's Avatar
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    I Love my computer to satisfy curiosities of my ride time/distance/temperature. All of my riding is purly fun/leisure so the computer is merely a handy gadget that I look at frequently or not at all depending the quality of the ride, mood, or scenery.

  15. #15
    I need more cowbell. Digital Gee's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=NOS88][QUOTE=jppe]The worst times were when I might have the odometer set on distance for a longer ride and the miles just seemed to go by way too slowly. Instead of just motoring along I was constantly doing the math on how much longer it would take me to get to the finish.


    jppe, you speak my mind much more eloquently than my attempts when getting this thread started.
    Yeah, I agree with this. There's nothing more pathetic than setting out to do a half century, for example, and noticing that you've only gone two miles so far. I promise myself not to look again for a long time, but when I do, I'm only at 3.5. Ugh.

    OTOH, when I'm just out there having fun and going to a long ride but with nothing specific in mind, every time I glance at the puter my mileage is up 8-10 miles.

    Weird!
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