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Old 05-20-07, 06:01 PM   #1
Yen
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My first "long" ride.....

I haven't ridden for a few weeks and, at that time, didn't go much further than a few blocks out of our neighborhood. Meanwhile I have been walking on the treadmill and at work, doing bursts of intensity and many stairs, so I felt ready when Hubby said "I feel like going for a bike ride, wanna go?".

We rode to a trail that begins about 5 miles from our house. Much of the trip on the way to the trail was uphill and I had to stop only once. In all, the entire ride was about 11.5 miles.

Here's what I learned on my first long ride:

1. I need a new saddle. The wide comfy one that came with the bike is fine for around the neighborhood, but not for a longer ride.

2. I know how to use BOTH shifters now, and when. That was my #1 fear when I began.

3. My first fall wasn't nearly as embarrassing as I feared. I had too many other thoughts going through my head: "Oh noooooo!..... My first fall!...... Watch your hand!...... How bad is this gonna be?...... Uh oh, my knee.......How's my bike?......" Turns out, I have only a superficial scrape on my kneecap (I was wearing jeans).

4. Consistent, regular exercise really does pay off. My clothes fit better, I feel better, and my endurance is improving. My legs didn't feel like they were going to fall off as I expected. I began this day feeling down in the dumps, and now I feel on top of the world. When you feel depressed, one of the worst things you can do is give in to it and sulk around the house. Get outside in the sunshine and go for a ride -- just do it.

5. We need to get a small wrench for our tool kit. We came upon a couple with a twisted chain (???). Hubby did his best to try and fix it, but it was too far gone. A wrench would have enabled us to remove the wheel and untwist the chain. This leads me to #6.....

6. Keep some wet wipes in the pack. They'll come in handy for wiping the grease off your hands before putting your gloves back on.

Yen
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Old 05-20-07, 06:05 PM   #2
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Excellent! Keep up the riding!
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Old 05-20-07, 06:06 PM   #3
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Not sure where you'll find it, but there's a small bottle of hand cleaner that cleans your hands and evaporates as you scrub them together. Nothing left to carry home. Check your bike shop.

Most bikes use a 15mm nut on the rear axle, and some have a 13mm on the front. These are extra weight if you don't use them on your bike.
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Old 05-20-07, 06:07 PM   #4
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Ain't Life GRAND!!!!!!! Hope for yor continued progress!!!!!!!!! Keep us updated!!!!!
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Old 05-20-07, 06:13 PM   #5
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Congratulations Yen!

I carry a pair of latex gloves in my bike bag for working on the bike out on the road. I've also found that an old ball point pen works great when trying to fix a jumped chain. We run across this quite often on the rides for the park. They're are a lot of kids on mountain bikes and they're always throwing their chains.
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Old 05-20-07, 06:47 PM   #6
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Way to go! Keep it up.
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Old 05-20-07, 07:58 PM   #7
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Thanks everyone.

Thanks also for the tips. We think they twisted the chain trying to remove it over the pedals before we arrived on the scene. Hubby did his best (he's my Mr. Fix-It, he can fix anything) but, in the end, we needed a wrench to remove the rear wheel.

My quads are beginning to feel a little like I beat on them today. I can hardly wait to see how they'll feel when I wake up in the morning. :-)

I should emphasize that my success is due mainly to walking, not cycling. At least, not yet. With more cycling more often, in addition to walking, I should start seeing new progress in at least leg strength and tone. I still have 14 lbs. yet to lose.... or, a dress size if I don't concentrate worry about what the scale says.

So glad I can come here and share and learn!

Jen
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Old 05-20-07, 07:59 PM   #8
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Hey, I don't think I could make a 5 mile ride, mostly uphill (unless it was a very mild incline). Congrats!

Good luck on the saddle. There are no guarantees. I still like them to have some softness. Maybe I'll be a hard butt someday.

Anyway, I like the Terry Cite (comes in both a men's and women's model). Not too soft & cushy, but one option does have a nice built-in gel pad, and small elastomer shock absorbers between the seat and rails - they work like mini-springs.

http://www.terrybicycles.com/saddles...tem_no=2113200

or without the gel pads:
http://www.terrybicycles.com/saddles...tem_no=2113100

I've been riding the non-gel version, but wish I had the gel one to compare it too. Got mine as a new bike pull at half-price.
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Old 05-20-07, 08:26 PM   #9
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Thanks Tom, those look like nice saddles. I like the design and the specific reference to recreational riding in an upright position. The site lists a store near me that tells Terry cycles, so I'll drop by and check 'em out.

The incline wasn't very steep, but long. My quads feel as if I beat on them with my fists today. Not too bad (yet), just enough to tell me they are waking up from the long 20+ year sleep.
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Old 05-20-07, 08:36 PM   #10
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Good work, Yen! Keep riding.

A 6" crescent wrench might be large enough to remove a standard wheel nut.
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Old 05-20-07, 08:45 PM   #11
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Don't know if you are wearing padded cycling shorts yet, but those help. I'm using padded undershorts and they add much comfort, while enabling me to continue to wear Fred exterior clothing.

http://mtborah.com/index.asp?CompID=...&CategoryID=63
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Old 05-20-07, 09:04 PM   #12
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Look at all the great things you learned in just one 11.5 mile ride! And all good ones, too. Congratulations.
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Old 05-20-07, 09:13 PM   #13
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Thanks, doctor j.

Tom: I did buy a pair of shorts to wear under regular pants (they called them "liners" at the store) but haven't worn them yet. I am planning to wear them next time under my regular Fredette attire. I'm glad to hear you've noticed a difference with them. I really don't want to wear shorts or capri pants.... I'm fair-skinned and spent too many years burning my skin at the beach. I don't want to have to apply sunscreen and worry about whether I applied it correctly, soon/late enough, covered enough, etc. It's just too much of a hassle for me. If it's too hot to ride in long pants, then it will be too hot to ride, period.

Today I wore a white long-sleeve cotton t-shirt under my bright green riding vest. Can anyone suggest a one-piece long-sleeve shirt I could wear instead that is cool and very visible?

Jen
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Old 05-20-07, 09:45 PM   #14
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Everything you said -and more- is true. Great, isn't it?
I absolutely understand your feelings of accomplishment and, believe me, it just grows from there.

I second the notion, too: ditch the jeans.
It might seem like a small detail but it makes all the difference in the world
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Old 05-20-07, 09:58 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Bombadil
Don't know if you are wearing padded cycling shorts yet, but those help. I'm using padded undershorts and they add much comfort, while enabling me to continue to wear Fred exterior clothing.

http://mtborah.com/index.asp?CompID=...&CategoryID=63
You mean Depends?
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Old 05-20-07, 10:37 PM   #16
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Good job Yen. About the long sleeved and still cool shirt. Target and Sam's club both sell very lightweight knit shirts in a variety of colors that fit the bill. I prefer short sleeved though. I have a couple in electric blue and a couple in very bright orange. I like to be seen by people driving cars, birght colors have to help. I've seen similar long pants too. Much cooler and more comfortable by far than jeans, you might want to give something like that a try?
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Old 05-21-07, 10:53 AM   #17
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Hate to say it but at this rate we have another metric rider by the end of the summer.

Now as to those Cycling shorts- Get them in black as the only colour to wear. I'm telling you now as you will have to break down and buy some sooner or later as they are a lot more comfortable. In black- when the hands get covered in chain grease- you can wipe them on the shorts and it won't show.

I am really pleased that the quads are hurting. Not the masochist in me- it shows that you are putting effort into the riding. Only 14lbs to lose? thats not bad and as its only one dress size you should manage it by July. I can remember when DG started riding and he went down 2 sizes in the first 6 months.
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Old 05-21-07, 11:21 AM   #18
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I'm glad to hear that you have achieved one of the first requirements for a hardcore biker.

Upon getting up from a fall, if you are not damaged too badly to stand you must check out the bike before performing repairs on yourself. I think that it has something to do with the adrenaline.
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