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Thread: My Butt Hurts !

  1. #1
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    My Butt Hurts !

    I bought a new Specialized Crosstrail last weekend, and I really like it, and everything it does, and the way it rides. Stock 145mm seat, which is surprisingly compliant.

    The problem is that I have 180 miles on it now (6th day old, today,) which works out to 30 miles per day. I usually do this in 2 1/2 hours, or so. ( a flat tire turns it into a 3 hour ride, not only for the repair, but, it then takes me awhile to get my rythm back.)

    The saddle is a twenty mile saddle!.....

    No - I do not wear bike shorts yet, but do wear lycra compression shorts under my lightweight, airy, gym shorts. I tried one of those gel pads I had sitting around, and it was very minimally better, but no real relief.

    I'm 62 years old, 6', 185#(finally started to drop weight, along with the fat....)

    The discomfort is all on my sit bones.....

    Where do I turn for the MOST relief.

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    Senior Member Terrierman's Avatar
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    Brooks is the standard answer, Selle Anatomica is another good, rapidly becoming standard, answer.
    It's all downhill from here. Except the parts that are uphill.

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    Several bits of advice. First, try making small adjustments in the saddle position - fore/aft, nose up/down/height, etc. Do it in very small increments and see if that offers relief. Second, get a good pair of cycling shorts. Anything baggy like gym shorts will bunch up and cause pressure. Third, consider a road saddle if you are riding 2 1/2 hours. I believe the saddle on your bike is wide. People often think a wide saddle is comfortable because it supports your butt more - not true. A saddle should support your sit bones so that your legs are straight up and down to make the pedal motion efficient (just like your legs are in running!
    You're just trying to start an argument to show how smart you are.

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    gone ride'n cyclinfool's Avatar
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    It will take time - and it may take a few saddle trials.
    Some lessoned I learned over the years:
    1) At the beginning of every season my rear end gives out before my legs - it takes about 6 weeks for my tail to toughen back up.
    2) A lot of (too much) padding in the shorts can be as bad as no padding.
    3) Long rides require that you have several positions or slight variations in sit positions to be comfortable so your seat adjustment needs to allow for that.
    4) Stretching while riding helps
    5) A break every 2 hours helps

    Not familiar with your current saddle but you will need a good road saddle and they are like shoes - what works for one person may not work for another - particularly if you are planning to do a century.
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    Banned. The Weak Link's Avatar
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    Just HTFU.

    Oops. I forgot for a moment that this isn't the roadie thread.

    I have a Bontrager Race, a Terry Liberator, and a Terry Fly Ti. My butt hurts with all of them, so I use the Fly Ti because it looks the coolest.

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    Old Newbie cllvt's Avatar
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    I suggest that you try some decent bike shorts w/a good chamois in them. I used some Pearl Izumin ultrasensors with what they call their "elite" chamois this past weekend, and after finishing a Century my butt was not sore. If I ride 30 or 40 miles in some of my cheaper shorts though, I get a sore butt.

    Everyone has a preference, and I am not trying to sell P.I., but I think generally in bike shorts you get what you pay for. The other thing to keep in mind when reading the description is what is the intended use for the shorts. Sounds like you want a short that is comfortable on longer rides, so look for that, and stay away from race/TT shorts. Just my 2 cents!
    Chris

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    Senior Member gcottay's Avatar
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    Perhaps riding a good recumbent on odd-numbered days would give you some healing time.
    George
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    Senior Member ?? Beverly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cllvt View Post
    I suggest that you try some decent bike shorts w/a good chamois in them. I used some Pearl Izumin ultrasensors with what they call their "elite" chamois this past weekend, and after finishing a Century my butt was not sore. If I ride 30 or 40 miles in some of my cheaper shorts though, I get a sore butt.
    +1 on the good shorts.

    Most of my bike clothes are packed and ready for a tour next week. On a 33 mile club ride this morning I wore a cheap pair of shorts instead of my regular ones At about the 20 mile mark my sit bones were sore. Now I know why that pair of shorts is always pushed to the back of the closet. I don't think they'll even make it back to the closet this time.

    I also like the PI shorts.
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  9. #9
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    New bike last week- Ridden it every day and your butt hurts- Learn to ride out of the saddle.



    Not surprised your butt hurts. You have given it something more akin to a rock than an easy armchair- probably for the first time in its life. And then you do the same thing every day just to punish it. Take a rest for a day or 5 and then see if the butt has hardened up- Or only go for 15 mile rides for a few days.

    It takes time for the butt to get adjusted to a saddle and it takes time for saddle to get adjusted to a butt. Give it time and see if it improves- but Please- Take a rest or stop before the pain arrives for a few days at least- Then come back in a months time and ask the important question of "What Saddle should I buy?" Then see how many different replies you will get.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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    Quote Originally Posted by StanSeven View Post
    Several bits of advice. First, try making small adjustments in the saddle position - fore/aft, nose up/down/height, etc. Do it in very small increments and see if that offers relief. Second, get a good pair of cycling shorts. Anything baggy like gym shorts will bunch up and cause pressure. Third, consider a road saddle if you are riding 2 1/2 hours. I believe the saddle on your bike is wide. People often think a wide saddle is comfortable because it supports your butt more - not true. A saddle should support your sit bones so that your legs are straight up and down to make the pedal motion efficient (just like your legs are in running!
    The above is the exact advice I would have posted. +1 OP? When you purchased the bike did the shop at least do a quick bike fitting? If not take it back and have them help you with a riding position that is correct.

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    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    The LBS I trade at has an experienced, certified, fitter; and, supposedly, everything is as it should be. Other than the sit bone problem, this seat is very comfortable, up until I hit the 1.5 hour mark. YES, they did take a lot of time with me, adjusting and readjusting; and, the bike was VERY comfortable, from the very first ride. Other saddle adjustments were not as comfortable as where it is.

    On my old road bike, the drops helped rearrange weight distribution frequently, but I'd really like to keep the OEM flat bars on there, as I like them. A bolt on aerobar might be in my future to change the sit angle... more often.

    Riding out of the saddle is not much of an option - my bum knee won't cooperate. It's OK sitting and pedalling, but walking and riding out of the saddle ain't a good idea for me.

    I pretty much have to spend all of my riding time sitting down, only occasionally standing up on the pedals for butt relief. No pedalling allowed, or, VERY little at most.

    I've got one more gel saddle cover, which is quite a bit thicker than the one I used yesterday and today - and I will try that one next; but, I'd really like to ride without it.

    Now, my wife is going to make me go fishing for 5 days, so I won't get to ride until next Thursday! I'm both happy, and unhappy, as I really enjoy my 30 miles along the river every morning. And, it sure is peeling the fat off!

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    Senior Member reiffert's Avatar
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    Sounds like you have a good bike shop. Maybe they will let you swap saddles around till you get a more comfortable one. Many have some sort of 'trial' period policy.

    Flat bars means more weight on the sitbones and less opportunity to alter positions. Lots of rides on something new and not much chance for body to acclimate. See how it feels after a week off, then maybe either alternate with other bike or do short day / long day rides. Maybe pain reliever of choice and/or warm compress/cold compress also.

    With the accumulated mileage, it might be time to check in on the fit.

    And bike shorts. A minimal pad not sliding around helps in preventing a tender spot turning into a sore.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Terrierman View Post
    Brooks is the standard answer, Selle Anatomica is another good, rapidly becoming standard, answer.
    I sent a B17 to Selle and had it cut out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wanderer View Post
    I bought a new Specialized Crosstrail last weekend, and I really like it, and everything it does, and the way it rides. Stock 145mm seat, which is surprisingly compliant.

    The problem is that I have 180 miles on it now (6th day old, today,) which works out to 30 miles per day. I usually do this in 2 1/2 hours, or so. ( a flat tire turns it into a 3 hour ride, not only for the repair, but, it then takes me awhile to get my rythm back.)

    The saddle is a twenty mile saddle!.....

    No - I do not wear bike shorts yet, but do wear lycra compression shorts under my lightweight, airy, gym shorts. I tried one of those gel pads I had sitting around, and it was very minimally better, but no real relief.

    I'm 62 years old, 6', 185#(finally started to drop weight, along with the fat....)

    The discomfort is all on my sit bones.....

    Where do I turn for the MOST relief.
    66 y/o Now have 4200 miles in 4 months on a Felt Carbon Race Saddle.
    Wear 2 pair of bike shorts It takes time for old butts to used to bike seats.
    Keep what you got. It is not the seat.
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  15. #15
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    On the shorts side. You do get what you pay for but I recently bought a pair of Giordana Tenax Bib shorts that are lot more up the price and quality range than I would normally buy. On top of that I have not been doing many rides for the last 3 months. Just a few short ones to say I can still ride. Friday- and I finally got out for a respectable ride with the New Bibs. Absolutely no pain whatsoever- and that is not normal. I would have expected to feel the saddle after 20 miles or so but 40 miles and nothing.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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    More miles will make more difference than changing or adjusting saddles. After that improvement comes, then you can make additional improvements by adjusting the current saddle. Third would be changing the saddle. Shortcuts are tempting, but it takes miles to make improvements.
    Last edited by BluesDawg; 07-20-08 at 05:10 AM.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

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    The advice listed in the comments above is great. I just wanted to add my own experience in shopping for bicycling shorts, which is that you can not really tell by trying them on in the dressing room. You really need to ride in them to make the right choice. So it is very important to find a LBS or mail order store that will give you a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee - no questions or exceptions. I ended up needing to return an expensive pair and was really grateful they took it back. It took two tries to find the right shorts & it has made a HUGE difference. Good luck & happy riding.

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    Your Bum knee is a challenge. I would not want to do 30 miles without standing up every so often.
    We have also a Tandem bike. I must bike sitting down on it because of my wife (stability issues).
    Good bike shorts and alternate hand positions help but sitting on a butt for hours is hard.
    You may have to spend the money to find good padded shorts and a good saddle knowing that nothing will be pain free because of the knee.
    Frequent stops will help you of course.

  19. #19
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    I certainly fought this issue for months after returning to riding. Still do have it 100% whipped, but have made substantial progress. For me spending more time in the saddle did help, using padded shorts/liners helped, and finding a more comfortable saddle and getting it better positioned was a big help.

    I went from finding it very painful to ride 10 miles, to now being able to ride 40+ miles with only minor discomfort.
    "Too often I would hear men boast of the miles covered that day, rarely of what they had seen." Louis L'Amour

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  20. #20
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    One week is too soon to change the saddle unless you were a more experienced rider whose sit bones have already adjusted to a long time in the saddle.

    So, my first guess is that you need a good pair of padded shorts or or padded liners -- adequate padding makes a huge difference.

    I remember it taking a good 2 weeks to get accustomed to a new saddle (switching from a big satiny padded pillow on the hybrid to a Specialized BG with cut-out), and that was even with padded liners. After that, it was smooth sailing. The seat on my Specialized Roubaix looks (to me) extremely uncomfortable but I thought I'd give it a try.... the time on the Specialized BG had conditioned my sit bones so this saddle is now comfortable enough for 40+ rides.

    When it breaks down, I plan to replace it with a Brooks B17.
    Specialized Roubaix Expert
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wanderer View Post
    The LBS I trade at has an experienced, certified, fitter; and, supposedly, everything is as it should be. Other than the sit bone problem, this seat is very comfortable, up until I hit the 1.5 hour mark. YES, they did take a lot of time with me, adjusting and readjusting; and, the bike was VERY comfortable, from the very first ride. Other saddle adjustments were not as comfortable as where it is.

    On my old road bike, the drops helped rearrange weight distribution frequently, but I'd really like to keep the OEM flat bars on there, as I like them. A bolt on aerobar might be in my future to change the sit angle... more often.

    Riding out of the saddle is not much of an option - my bum knee won't cooperate. It's OK sitting and pedalling, but walking and riding out of the saddle ain't a good idea for me.

    I pretty much have to spend all of my riding time sitting down, only occasionally standing up on the pedals for butt relief. No pedalling allowed, or, VERY little at most.

    I've got one more gel saddle cover, which is quite a bit thicker than the one I used yesterday and today - and I will try that one next; but, I'd really like to ride without it.

    Now, my wife is going to make me go fishing for 5 days, so I won't get to ride until next Thursday! I'm both happy, and unhappy, as I really enjoy my 30 miles along the river every morning. And, it sure is peeling the fat off!
    I just looked at your bike and will go out on a limb and recommend the Brooks B-17. I use two of them, sprung (MTB) and unsprung (road). They are heavy but do not let that be an issue because you are riding for pleasure. The comfort is worth a few ounces. I had Selle Anatomica cut out the unsprung one and chose the ed-s slot and the Clydesdale reinforcment. Break in was minimal. I weigh 155lbs but and glad I got it reinforced. This saddle is like a leather hammock. Your frame is a hardtail and it is aluminum. A lot of 'the road' is transferred directly to your butt. http://www.mcmwin.com/saddle%20shop%20new.htm

    Video: http://www.mcmwin.com/cycling%20store.htm#Video_clips
    Last edited by FloridaBoy; 07-21-08 at 04:00 AM.

  22. #22
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wanderer View Post

    I've got one more gel saddle cover, which is quite a bit thicker than the one I used yesterday and today - and I will try that one next; but, I'd really like to ride without it.

    Gel saddle covers are probably not the answer. They are the opposite of what is needed.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Road Fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wanderer View Post
    I bought a new Specialized Crosstrail last weekend, and I really like it, and everything it does, and the way it rides. Stock 145mm seat, which is surprisingly compliant.

    The problem is that I have 180 miles on it now (6th day old, today,) which works out to 30 miles per day. I usually do this in 2 1/2 hours, or so. ( a flat tire turns it into a 3 hour ride, not only for the repair, but, it then takes me awhile to get my rythm back.)

    The saddle is a twenty mile saddle!.....

    No - I do not wear bike shorts yet, but do wear lycra compression shorts under my lightweight, airy, gym shorts. I tried one of those gel pads I had sitting around, and it was very minimally better, but no real relief.

    I'm 62 years old, 6', 185#(finally started to drop weight, along with the fat....)

    The discomfort is all on my sit bones.....

    Where do I turn for the MOST relief.
    I would go back to your Specialized dealer. First have them measure (or re-confirm) your butt width using the AssOMeter (I think this might be what it's really called). It measures the distance between your sit bones. That steers you toward a particular saddle width. For your riding position (I don't know how aggressive your riding position is ...) and for the desired degree of give, you can choose from about half a dozen different designs at different price points. Some better shops let you test ride a Spec saddle for a week with refund or exchange priveleges if you don't change any of the cosmetics.

    You might not end up with a Brooks, and it might be that a Brooks is not what you need. They don't suit anyone. Neither does Spec, for that matter, but they have been trying very hard to offer a wide range of options.

    Long-ride comfort begins to become a battle of fine points. Saddle height, shorts selection, saddle angle, saddle fore-aft position, and all the other bike fitting parameters can be important. If you didn't get a careful, fully-measured fitting from the Spec dealer, or if you doubt the results, you should get one. If you had one, there is often a commitment to re-adjust if your riding proves their work to be wrong. Take it back and ask the fitter for help. You might end up buying a part from the dealer, but so what? Many of us will tell you what kind of saddle to try.

    Loose the gel saddle cover and make sure your saddle height is correct without it. Also, GET THE BIKE SHORTS. 20 miles + is far enough for them to help you.

    Road Fan

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    Well I thought I could ride any saddle but this weekend proved me wrong. After 40 miles of a pretty hot and hilly century ride, I concluded that the Selle Italia Thoork was better left to the short fast club rides. Really had to slow down and get out of the saddle alot to ease the pain. Reinstalled the Aliante on the bike last night! Lesson learned.

  25. #25
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the help! I finally got my wife to pry the fishing pole out of my hands, so I'll start working on the problem tomorrow morning. Sure was missed for the last 5 days.

    But, tomorrow morning can't come soon enuf!!!!

    p.s. The fishing and weather was fantastic. Hi 75, low 40. 150 keepers in 3 days for the four of us....

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