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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

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Old 06-27-14, 05:56 AM   #26
Roody
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I doubt very much there are any car-free people on this forum who have ridden as much distance as you. Most people are car-free because of ideological beliefs... Exercising, eating healthy and keeping fit and taking responsibility for their well being is the last thing on their mind. They are more interested in the health of a melting iceberg or some glacier then the health of their bodies .
What an odd remark, and rude. Are you feeling ok?

Also please stay on topic. This is not a thread for flame wars. If you want to be rude, please start a different thread. I will report attempted thread-jacks to the mods.

as a reminder, the topic is HILL CLIMBING and I expect it to be friendly and informative.
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Old 06-27-14, 06:19 AM   #27
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What an odd remark, and rude. Are you feeling ok?

Also please stay on topic. This is not a thread for flame wars. If you want to be rude, please start a different thread. I will report attempted thread-jacks to the mods.

as a reminder, the topic is HILL CLIMBING and I expect it to be friendly and informative.
Roody ... I don't think wolfchild was flaming anyone. I just think he's unaware that people ride for health and fitness.
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Old 06-27-14, 06:23 AM   #28
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The last thing on their minds? Where'd you figure that out?

I used to be a road bike rider for many years, dedicated to high performance biking and racing with my buddies. But now I'm car-free and commute and shop by bicycle. I ride more miles than I ever did as a roadie. I'm just as dedicated to fitness and I'm in the best shape in my life at age 54. I ride 200+ miles per week and my weight is nearly ideal for doing my weekly routine for as little effort as possible.

I've always tended to push myself. So while some people may need to motivate themselves to try harder, I've found added speed by learning to not try as hard. For hills, what I can say is to practice, practice, so you know what different kinds of inclines and distances will feel like. For long hills get yourself dialed in with the right effort to make the crest of the hill with a consistent effort during the climb instead of using up all your energy and then riding jerky and out of breath before the top. For short hills you can often stand up on the pedals and/or just give the hill a non-sustainable but short effort that maintains your momentum as you go over it.

Accept the physical laws of the universe. If you're not maintaining a decent amount of energy in reserve, you need to slow down for the hill. No amount of wanting it to be easy to glide over it will change that. Accept that long hills are harder than short ones. Your legs might feel fine on a 500 yard 8% incline. So go ahead and give the first 500 yards a reasonable go but be prepared to shift up a gear (or two!) when the same incline extends 1/2 mile. So ideally you're not looking to maintain the same speed all the way up the hill as maintain a decent but reasonably efficient and pleasant effort.

I watch how I'm feeling each day and try to be sensitive to that. I won't maintain my best condition by going full bore every day. I need to back off and recuperate. So I try to quiet the voice that tells me I'm not going fast enough. It helps to note the difference in time. When I try really hard I can make my commute in about an hour and 15 minutes. When I'm taking it real easy and feel like I'm almost goofing off, I might slouch in at a hour and 25. I'm always surprised how little difference there is between pushing myself and just enjoying the ride.
A lot of us transportation cyclists have to ride up big hills every day whether we feel strong or not. So I like your suggestion about slowing down a bit when you need to recover. You really don't lose that much time on a big hill if you occasionally take it easy in a granny gear. One amazing thing about cycling is that it can be a grueling stamina event, or it can be as easy as walking to the fridge for a snack.
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Old 06-27-14, 06:24 AM   #29
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Roody ... I don't think wolfchild was flaming anyone. I just think he's unaware that people ride for health and fitness.
I hope you're right.
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Old 06-27-14, 06:45 AM   #30
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I'm constantly trying to improve my cycling fitness. While I don't enjoy the training racers do, I'm always pushing to climb a hill faster or increase my average speed. I think this pic tells the story.

Before cycling and now

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Old 06-27-14, 02:44 PM   #31
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I'm constantly trying to improve my cycling fitness. While I don't enjoy the training racers do, I'm always pushing to climb a hill faster or increase my average speed. I think this pic tells the story.

Before cycling and now


Hey is that a sword that you carrying in the first pic ??...You've lost a lot of belly fat in the second pic. Congratulations... Hard work and dedication to exercising pays off in the long run. Was all that weight loss accomplished only through cycling or is there something else that you did ??
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Old 06-27-14, 03:08 PM   #32
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They are more interested in the health of a melting iceberg or some glacier then the health of their bodies .
You say that like it's a bad thing. That glacier affects my health too.

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Most people are car-free because of ideological beliefs...
If that's the motivation, so be it.

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Old 06-27-14, 03:49 PM   #33
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One thing I've noticed that's helped me with hill-climbing that hasn't been mentioned so far is BREATHING. I find that I can maintain a good pace on a slightly harder than optimal gear going up hills when I can control my breathing rate. Also, I remember in another thread related to hill climbing that paying attention to your breathing rate helps you figure out when you need to shift to an easier gear during the middle of your climbs.
Definitely this. I've been riding a lot of hills recently on my fixed gear bike, including many that I thought were way out of my league running single speed. I've found the best thing to do is focus on steady breathing and not elevating my heart rate. If I feel my heart start working harder, I slow down. I actually tend to climb faster when maintaining an "all-day" pace like this than I do when I try go aggro and just muscle up a hill.
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Old 06-27-14, 07:45 PM   #34
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Definitely this. I've been riding a lot of hills recently on my fixed gear bike, including many that I thought were way out of my league running single speed. I've found the best thing to do is focus on steady breathing and not elevating my heart rate. If I feel my heart start working harder, I slow down. I actually tend to climb faster when maintaining an "all-day" pace like this than I do when I try go aggro and just muscle up a hill.
I'm confused. If you slow down too much you'll eventually slow down and then fall down... at least that was my impression of fixed fear riding.
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Old 06-27-14, 08:14 PM   #35
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I'm confused. If you slow down too much you'll eventually slow down and then fall down... at least that was my impression of fixed fear riding.
Actually you can generally ride slower on a fixed gear than you can on a freewheel because you can pedal forward and resist at the same time. It's hard to describe, but easy to do. You can achieve a similar effect by modulating your rear brake on a freewheel while pedaling. In both cases the slowest you can go is "trackstanding".
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Old 07-01-14, 11:04 PM   #36
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I'm another FG hill climber. These days, most of my serious hills are just for fun, though I've had commutes with hills in the past. I stay seated as long as possible, then stand up and power through the rest. Sometimes, walking is involved. After a few tries, I can usually take the hill without any walking.

One interesting thing with a FG/SS is that you can calculate exactly how many turns of the pedals the climb will take. This can be useful for determining an exact location during the climb and figuring out how much energy you will need to complete it.
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