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Old 04-15-12, 09:50 AM   #1
daredevil
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tired of computers and stats

I'm not a competitor yet my entire riding life I've enjoyed using computers and heart rate monitors and diligently logging the info. With each passing year it gets easier to do.

Now I don't care. I just ride. I have no idea how many miles I've ridden the past couple years or how fast. And after using a heart rate monitor for long enough, you eventually just know your exertion level.

Has anybody else lost that "need to know"? Maybe some of you never had it.
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Old 04-15-12, 10:05 AM   #2
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The only stats I keep are "mileage" so I know "when" certain "consumable" parts need to be replaced and I do like to know my miles by month and year, the rest I have no interest in, LOL, I'd be afraid to use a heart monitor, I might give up cycling seeing the "numbers" on a long uphill grade!
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Old 04-15-12, 11:08 AM   #3
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I didn't replace the battery on my Cateye when it died a few months ago. Haven't noticed a difference in my riding.
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Old 04-15-12, 11:13 AM   #4
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I'm not a stat fiend myself. I don't race and don't have any need to know all the details. I do like to know how fast and far I've gone, however.
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Old 04-15-12, 11:27 AM   #5
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My touring bike, 25 years ago, I got a computer that mounted on the fork blade.
(German, ciclomaster)
Put it between the canti boss and the top of the lowrider rack..
.. for me, It just counted milage.

If hit the trip re-set, at the start, I could deduce how far I had to the next Village.
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Old 04-15-12, 12:17 PM   #6
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It comes and goes for me. I never get really wrapped up in goal setting and trend charting, but I do enjoy seeing where I rode, how the climbs look on a graph and where my speed stacks up to other times I've done the same route or climbed the same hills.
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Old 04-15-12, 12:42 PM   #7
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It comes and goes for me. I never get really wrapped up in goal setting and trend charting, but I do enjoy seeing where I rode, how the climbs look on a graph and where my speed stacks up to other times I've done the same route or climbed the same hills.
Couldn't have said it better myself, at least not without a whole lot of thought, and I don't feel like doing that today. And even if I did, the results are unsure.

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Old 04-15-12, 12:47 PM   #8
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I log distance and nothing else. I kind of like to see how much I covered at the end of the year. I used to write down gas purchases in a little notebook. Stopped doing that years ago.
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Old 04-15-12, 02:23 PM   #9
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HRM--And if I do not use it and check what I am doing- I find I have got lazy. Leave it off for too long and I find I am only riding at 125 and not 135 and that makes a world of difference to speed- distance and fitness.
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Old 04-15-12, 02:30 PM   #10
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The only reason I check the avg is to see improvement over time. The cyclocomputer, a very simple one, does assist when I have to change a route because of road work and I want to ensure I get the same or similar distance that I planned on for the day.
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Old 04-15-12, 05:46 PM   #11
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I used to track distances for repeat rides, like commutes or errands, just to get an idea of how much I was actually riding. Probably could have used a computer to track the ride I took last fall, which I 'guesstimated' at 52 miles; but, in end, it doesn't really matter. (LP)

I like the sig line I've seen here before -- "smiles, not miles". A ride is over when going further won't make me happier, that's my measure.

Speed, cadence, etc.? Meh. If I satisfy my body's demand for a certain speed or distance, that's close enough.
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Old 04-15-12, 05:57 PM   #12
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I like to use the computer when I push myself in the morning. Although the level of pain in my legs works almost as well as an indicator. What it does do is keep track how far I go, and give me an average speed so I compare week to week and see if I'm getting faster. When I ride with my family I switch bikes to one without a computer. I know I'm riding slower than a turtle with my kid on the back.. I don't need a computer to tell me. I also don't use a computer when commuting beyond telling the time. Commuting is not a race and as long as I get to work on time who cares what the average is.
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Old 04-15-12, 06:41 PM   #13
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Speed, cadence, etc.?
Cadence was like the heart rate for me, it didn't take long before you just knew without needing a tool.
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Old 04-15-12, 06:46 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BluesDawg View Post
It comes and goes for me. I never get really wrapped up in goal setting and trend charting, but I do enjoy seeing where I rode, how the climbs look on a graph and where my speed stacks up to other times I've done the same route or climbed the same hills.
Same with me. I had one of the first Polar HRM's for tracking performance. I had one of the first Garmins for cycling. Took a Hunter Allen class for power meters, but decided not to get one. I currently have a relatively new Garmin for my bike, but rarely use it. I have a pretty good feel for my HR, level of fitness, what's needed to improve (ride more...), and don't need to track every little thing. If I get back into massive intensity mode, I'll probably start tracking things again. "You can't improve what you don't measure" is pretty true, but people were measuring performance empirically long before computers, and even watches, were invented.
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Old 04-15-12, 07:41 PM   #15
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I can't believe what I'm about to post...

Been reading Bicycle Times this evening when I read about the Strava ride tracker app for iPhone. What did I say about it getting easier to track rides? Well, guess what I have to try on my commute tomorrow?
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Old 04-15-12, 07:48 PM   #16
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It is written (in Base Building for Cyclists): "....it takes only four hours to ride four hours".

So, for proper training all you need is a watch and a map. You don't need to keep track of miles and speed. It's all about time in the saddle.
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Old 04-16-12, 07:10 AM   #17
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I like to know my average speed just to guage my fitness level, right now, it ain't that good.
The other stats I have on the bike with a computer are fun to see, like max speed, and ride time, but I don't track them.
On of the most freeing ride was a few months ago, when I got a single speed 29'r. No computer, no gears to shift, just riding, and (this will sound corny) being one with the bike. It was a sublime enjoyment.
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Old 04-16-12, 07:18 AM   #18
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I like what I like and you like what you like.

I ride for fun, fitness, and health. One or more of these reasons motivate me to go out and ride.

Having a variety of statistics and information often increases the impact and enjoyment of each of these reasons.

For me.

But if it doesn't for someone else - or even decreases the impact and enjoyment, then ignore and avoid the information.
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Old 04-16-12, 07:24 AM   #19
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Half of my bikes have computers half don't. The highest mileage bikes have computers. I like to know how far and how long a trip is before I lead a ride for others. Sometimes I take others on a ride to the ferry and around an island, or a car ride a remote ride. It's nice to know if the dog needs to be fed and let out by someone else. Some of my friends want to know when we will be back from a ride.
Knowing how long it takes, and how far all my destinations are, means I know the same thing on a bike without a computer too. Having a couple of bikes with cadence means I know the rpm on bikes without cadence too.
Using the average speed tells me how long it will take me to get somewhere to meet someone. I like knowing how many miles I get out of tires, chains, wheels etc.
Sometimes I don't care about any of this. That's nice too.
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Old 04-16-12, 07:30 AM   #20
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training, riding and computers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dudelsack View Post
It is written (in Base Building for Cyclists): "....it takes only four hours to ride four hours".

So, for proper training all you need is a watch and a map. You don't need to keep track of miles and speed. It's all about time in the saddle.
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I like them. My purpose in riding is probably the same as it is for many people in tis forum - retarding the progress of aging and disease. (Okay, there are 'nicer' ways to say it).

I enjoy the feedback (if you're not a technical person and find that jargon offensive - it's information). No matter what I do, I prefer having information to not not having it. Maybe that's a disadvantage in some way, but to me, it's a need I have always had, even as a little kid - I needed to know how things worked and how much of this and that was needed to make something happen.

So, I have bought 4 or 5 of them (I've been riding since two summers ago. The first 2 or 3 didn't work well or last very long.

But the point is, I am reading back the data from each ride to determine whether or not I am improving, even though I will probably never ride a century and don't think I could win a race if I practiced for years and went on an all out training diet, hired a pro to work with me etc.

I understand the love of riding too, and I reallly like it. On days like today (it's unseasonably warm and sunny) I will not be able to resist going for a ride, even if I have to quit work early and sneak away and even if I only go 6 miles.

When I go, the computer will be on and it will capture all the statistics. If I see that my heart rate when higher than I expected (and I don't remember feeling like I was going to explode...) then I'll be happy about it, If it shows that I never even got into the zone, I'll think about what might have caused that.

Either way, the computer won't make the ride any worse and it might be fun to see that I've hit a better than usual pace, so I don't see the problem with it.

Actually, you don't even need a watch or a map to enjoy a ride, but if you have one, you probably can't ignore it

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Old 04-16-12, 07:43 AM   #21
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Speed and distance is all I need. And those two stats have been kept since the days we had speedometers (the heavy cable operated kind) on our stingrays and murray's.
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Old 04-16-12, 07:50 AM   #22
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6 bikes and 6 computers - and I have forgotten how to reset the computers on all the bikes, and I don't want to do a Google or try and find the manual. Some I press two buttons, and it resets, others I press two buttons, and the whole thing has to be reprogrammed. So, I just disregard.

Now, I have this "smart phone" and "my tracks" app that works the same for each bike.

Darn!!!!
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Old 04-16-12, 07:59 AM   #23
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Put me in the "never had it" column. Never bothered with a cycling computer, or an HRM. I seem to enjoy my rides just fine.
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Old 04-16-12, 08:05 AM   #24
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Miles and average speed is what I look at, and if I'm in hilly terrain, verticals. That's it. Other than that, I really couldn't care less.
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Old 04-16-12, 08:35 AM   #25
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I bought one (cycling computer) once, about 8 years ago; had it on the bike for about a month then took it off. It didn't tell me anything I didn't already know: some days I'm "faster" than on other days; some days I ride further than on other days. I've found over the last 11 years or so that the more I ride, the faster and further I can go (on average) on any given ride without getting fatigued. Who knew?

If I ever fulfill my dream of having a Rohloff bike (and doing some touring) I'll get a simple computer to record accumulated distance, but only because the Rohloff hub has an oil-change interval.
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