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Old 08-02-07, 07:03 AM   #1
RVH
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Suggestions to get my wife to ride more?

My wife and I love to ride together. We usually go for 10-15 miles and she loves it and raves about how good it makes her feel, etc. Problem is, she will only ride with me. She's nervous and afraid to go out alone.

Anyone have any suggestions?

Bob
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Old 08-02-07, 07:14 AM   #2
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Does she have any friends that ride? My wife often rides with a couple other women.
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Old 08-02-07, 07:17 AM   #3
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I ride by myself about 5 times a week. Usually carry my cell phone for emergencies. People are pretty nice at my end of town since it's very rural. I try to vary my route from riding in subdivisions to riding a hilly road that runs through horse property. I wear goofy, loud Hawaiian shirts for visibility - lots of people wave. My bike is an upright hybrid (Giant Suede), which is very comfortable for me.

Is she shy or self conscious? Does she worry about getting flats? Is it an urban area with scary traffic? Is it a motivation issue? You'll have to ask her what's at the heart of her hesitation. Maybe she needs a riding buddy - whether it's you or someone else when you aren't available. Possibly she just needs to make out a schedule and try to tick off each day with some kind of reward (new bike gear??) for so many days of riding per month.
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Old 08-02-07, 07:26 AM   #4
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Can you create a specific "route loop" for her so she knows you can get to her immediately by automobile if needed? Get her a decent cyclocomputer and promise a nice dinner when she hits certain (e.g. 250 miles) total mileages. She'll probably appreciate the fun goal-setting approach. Perhaps a weekend at a Bed & Breakfast when she hits the 1000-mile marker?
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Old 08-02-07, 07:36 AM   #5
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Are you riding in the street or a bike path? If your riding in the street maybe she's intimidated by traffic. Try the Minuteman bike path.
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Old 08-02-07, 10:25 AM   #6
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Ride more.
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Old 08-02-07, 10:28 AM   #7
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Move to San Diego, and I'll ride with her.
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Old 08-02-07, 12:52 PM   #8
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Since you asked for advice, here's my 2 cents: If she's happy the way things are, don't try to change anything--unless she wants to.
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Old 08-02-07, 01:08 PM   #9
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Since you asked for advice, here's my 2 cents: If she's happy the way things are, don't try to change anything--unless she wants to.


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Old 08-02-07, 07:19 PM   #10
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Get a tandem?
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Old 08-03-07, 09:08 PM   #11
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My girlfriend (who is retired and a few years older than I am) is not a cyclist, but the past couple of years she's put in around 3500 to 4000 kilometers per year on the back of my tandem, and she says she really enjoys it. She's got her own bikes, but she seldom goes out on them. I put a computer on her good bike and I doubt that it reads more than 200 km at the end of the year.

But to stay fit for cycling, the gf goes to the local community center and does the spin class. She only rides as hard as she feels like, and she doesn't put much resistance on the exercise bike. But she has a good time working out and meeting with the people there.

If your wife thinks this is a good idea, make sure she takes a water bottle, towel, and change of clothes with her. Any time I've ever done a spin class, I get this huge puddle of sweat underneath my bike.

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Old 08-03-07, 09:37 PM   #12
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Since you asked for advice, here's my 2 cents: If she's happy the way things are, don't try to change anything--unless she wants to.
Wise words spoken from experience, I presume.
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Old 08-03-07, 11:15 PM   #13
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In my experience, flowers, jewelry, and dinner dates usually result in more "ridin' time".
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Old 08-04-07, 06:03 AM   #14
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Try the Minuteman bike path.
Holy cow, that path is supposed to be intensely and profoundly weird.
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Old 08-04-07, 06:23 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by RVH View Post
My wife and I love to ride together. We usually go for 10-15 miles and she loves it and raves about how good it makes her feel, etc. Problem is, she will only ride with me. She's nervous and afraid to go out alone.

Anyone have any suggestions?

Bob
My wife is very nervous about riding alone.

However, there are two groups around here just started called the "Biking Babes" and the "Cycling Chicks."

The Cycling Chicks is more advanced riding.

The Biking Babes" is pretty basic, although perhaps a bit faster than my wife. They are all in her age range (she will be 70 in November).

As my wife is still rehabbing from her knee replacement, she joins the Biking Babes, but often does not do a full ride with them, returning early. SHe carries a cell phone, and her prime worry is a flat tire. She has no mechanical ability in these areas, and her hands are not real strong. I have her outfitted with goop tires and a CO2 cannister, but I am not real sure she could use these. She also carries a pump. In any event, she now will go an a 7 mile ride entirely by herself.

But, DON'T PUSH YOUR WIFE. THAT WILL BE THE KISS OF DEATH, IMHO.
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Old 08-04-07, 05:37 PM   #16
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>>> Problem is, she will only ride with me. . .afraid to go out alone. . .any suggestions?

Here's the thing, her instincts [and yours and mine] are the legacy of three billion years-worth of evolution's survivors. It's there for a reason. Add to that women's innate wisdom about these things. Trust her to “see far” in this.
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Old 08-04-07, 06:04 PM   #17
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Speaking as a woman, I suggest gently and respectfully trying to understand exactly why she is nervous and afraid to go out alone. Try to get specific answers, not just "because something might happen". Help her nail down exactly what she is afraid of, then ask what you can do to help her with that. For example, if she is afraid of getting a flat tire while she is out alone, then offer to patiently teach her how to change a tire. Don't press her.... don't make "riding alone" something she has to do like brushing her teeth.

I have had to push myself past my fears to go out alone in baby steps, first by leaving the safety of our own neighborhood, then riding a little further away, then crossing the street in traffic, etc. I'd still rather go with Hubby but I don't want to let fear hold me back because I love this sport and I want to do it as often as I can to push my limits and meet new challenges. Those goals may not be important to your wife at all.... and that's OK! Perhaps riding with you is enough for her -- and that's great! -- so don't push it if she still does not seem interested.
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Old 08-09-07, 09:10 AM   #18
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Thanks for all the suggestions

Thanks, all... I have taken them to heart. My process now is to simply ride more with her and let her get more miles in and to not push it. If that's what she wants, then so be it.

Good idea to look for a woman-only bike group. I'll check with the LBS about that.

Thanks,

Bob
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Old 08-09-07, 12:43 PM   #19
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There is little hope on this topic. I have even tried this infamous tactic: Never say this to your wife: Never say this to your wife
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Old 08-09-07, 02:42 PM   #20
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Ever think she rides because she likes riding with you and is not interested in going out on her own or with others? To her it's a "date" not a bike ride. If she has an interest in riding more and riding with others - she will. Otherwise, be thankful at least you can get her out with you.

I would check into whether or the local bikes clubs have "newbie" or slow rides. They do them with her a few times so she gets to feel comfrotable but hopefully she can meet others of her same ability. I think newer/slower riders are always afraid of being dumped - you? You have to stay with her or sleep on the couch!
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Old 08-09-07, 05:18 PM   #21
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Ever think she rides because she likes riding with you and is not interested in going out on her own or with others? To her it's a "date" not a bike ride. If she has an interest in riding more and riding with others - she will. Otherwise, be thankful at least you can get her out with you.
That was my thought. Maybe she's not that interested in riding but is interested in being with you. I'm not sure I'd want to touch that 'problem'

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Old 08-09-07, 05:27 PM   #22
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There is little hope on this topic. I have even tried this infamous tactic: Never say this to your wife: Never say this to your wife
Holy moly! You're lucky to be alive.
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Old 08-09-07, 05:30 PM   #23
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Holy cow, that path is supposed to be intensely and profoundly weird.
Incredibly off-topic, but for some reason I think TWL will like this link.


intensely and profoundly weird
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Old 08-12-07, 07:15 AM   #24
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I know when I first starting riding I was afraid to leave our street because I was afraid of a flat tire. As soon as I learned how to change it, I started venturing out. You might want to have her take a course in Vehicular Cycling, learning the rules of the road, how to ride to make yourself visable, stuff like that. I really learned a lot from the course, things I never would have thought to do. Also you could have her go to MeetUp.com and check out the people on that forum. I have found several ladies that ride at my speed and now I post a ride just about every weekend and we all get together for a great ride and I have made some great new friends. Before going on that website, I had tried riding with some of the local bike clubs but they were just not to my liking. Be sure and ASK her why she doesn't want to ride more, just don't pressure her. It may be just a lack of confidence, or as simple as she is afraid she won't find someone to ride with her at HER speed.
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