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Super Clydes: How many miles did you start with?

Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

Super Clydes: How many miles did you start with?

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Old 05-16-18, 08:58 AM
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iCanDoIt
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Super Clydes: How many miles did you start with?

Hello all,

This is my first post (woot!). Iím 5í11Ē, 380lbs and the new owner of a Specialized FatBoy. I rode around my hilly neighborhood for 2 miles yesterday in a session with a lot of breaks for standing and catching my breath.

My question for clydes who are or have been above 350lbs: how many miles were you riding to begin with?
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Old 05-16-18, 09:09 AM
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I started cycling before I peaked out at 310 pounds or so, but I could do 3-5 miles. One key is to take it a bit easy; gear down, kick and coast, repeat as required.

Overland Park is a nice area to ride in, from what I remember.
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Old 05-16-18, 12:40 PM
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I'm a lighter Clyde...when I started last year, 6 miles was a stretch. Just pace yourself and keep at it.
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Old 05-16-18, 03:26 PM
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I was never a super Clyde, but at 280 lbs. I started out doing about 3 miles and it totally wore me out, both from being totally out of shape and from a bike that was too small for me. Didn't take too long to build up endurance, though. And with a properly fitting bike both distance and speed increased, especially as weight went down.
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Old 05-16-18, 04:30 PM
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300# here. I do it every day, though I could have done a lot more otherwise. I started with 2 mi a day and have worked up to 4 mi. Now the biggest issue is butt soreness, but I think it will lessen in time and allow me to do longer daily rides.
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Old 05-16-18, 06:44 PM
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Originally Posted by iCanDoIt View Post
Hello all,

This is my first post (woot!). I’m 5’11”, 380lbs and the new owner of a Specialized FatBoy. I rode around my hilly neighborhood for 2 miles yesterday in a session with a lot of breaks for standing and catching my breath.

My question for clydes who are or have been above 350lbs: how many miles were you riding to begin with?
Lots of small rides to begin with, but the two biggest issues are the number of "hills" you encounter(and their steepness) and how suited your saddle is to you.


I had terrible trouble finding a saddle that didn't dig in to me so badly, so that I wouldn't ended up loosing skin/bleeding around my undercarriage.
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Old 05-16-18, 06:51 PM
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Originally Posted by ColonelSanders View Post
Lots of small rides to begin with, but the two biggest issues are the number of "hills" you encounter(and their steepness) and how suited your saddle is to you.


I had terrible trouble finding a saddle that didn't dig in to me so badly, so that I wouldn't ended up loosing skin/bleeding around my undercarriage.
Wow, this truly rings a bell for me. I just finished a 1.25 mile ride just now that wiped me out pretty good. I know I could have kept going, but my ďsitbonesĒ were killing me (even with padded shorts and a seat pad) and, tbh, I took a route with three large hills (or large to me) and was wiped out by the time I got back to the house. Iíll probably go out again later tonight, but for the time being, Iím toast.

Do you think Iíd make more progress if I were to drive to a flatter location or should I keep doing as many hills as possible?

edit: Iím a terrible phone typist and spelling mistakes bug me.

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Old 05-16-18, 06:57 PM
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Originally Posted by iCanDoIt View Post


Wow, this truly rings a bell for me. I just finished a 1.25 mile ride just now that wiped me out pretty good. I know I could have kept going, but my ďsitbonesĒ were killing me (even with padded shorts and a seat pad) and, tbh, I took a route with three large hills (or large to me) and was wiped out by the time I got back to the house. Iíll probably go out again later tonight, but for the time being, Iím toast.

Do do you think Iíd make more progress if I were to drive to a flatter location or should I keep doing as many hills as possible?
You should ride in a way that gives you enjoyment and you will end up going further and further that way.


I like to use my bike for various tasks, so if I am going to a friend's place, provided it is not too far for me, I take my bike there, rather than my car.


I use my bike to go to the cinema and back, no parking hassles or parking costs.
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Old 05-16-18, 09:01 PM
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Originally Posted by ColonelSanders View Post
You should ride in a way that gives you enjoyment and you will end up going further and further that way.

.
Never a truer statement has ever been made. What ever the ride,distance,destination,goal just make sure to enjoy the ride!

i started at 336 and could do 7-8 Miles at first. But I kept at it. Years later and down around 60 lbs in the last 10 months now I can do a metric century without issue. Goal by year end out is a true century. Point is just ride and enjoy and the distances and ease will come.
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Old 05-17-18, 07:46 PM
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I would be finding a flat course to start with. Time in the saddle will count for more than distance as it simply takes time for your butt to get used to a bicycle saddle. I wasn't as heavy as you (I was 145kg~320lb), but started out on a Giant Sedona riding around our local velodrome. It's a 400m relatively flat track with shallow banking. The beauty about a track or say a suburban street block loop is you are never far from the end if you run out of puff. I rode for about half an hour, then started pushing the distance I could achieve in that half an hour. From there I started riding loops around town to enjoy the view more. Then I gradually extended those to take in a 15km rural loop. There was a significant hill in that one, but I started riding it by riding down that hill and the latter half was gently undulating. Then when I was getting better, I reversed the loop to finish going up that hill. Once I was doing that well, I graduated to a road bike and was riding an out and back road ride of around 20km. That was the furthest I had been before attempting my first road bunch ride which went for 60km (granted it was on the flattest road around these parts). But I managed it, I didn't die, and now 12 years later I race on road, track and ride mountain bikes occasionally.

It takes time, but you can get there. Get the butt used to the seat and keep extending the ride distance, then increase the difficulty.
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Old 05-17-18, 08:56 PM
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Welcome to the forum and +1 for the screen name.

Like others, my advice is to not worry about your miles or speed, but strive to get out there regularly. If you force yourself to do too much, it won't be fun and you won't want to do it. You will naturally start riding longer/faster in time. Just ride and have fun.
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Old 05-18-18, 07:50 PM
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I was over 300 when I started, Iím a lady so thatís probably considered super. I rode 18 miles but it was all downhill. I couldnít hardly ride a mile in flat ground. Even after I lost about 100lbs it took me a while to work up to more than a few miles but persistents is key. Cycling here easier a lot faster than running does.
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Old 05-18-18, 08:25 PM
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Just completed a 2.7 mile ride. First week riding. No joke- was VERY nearly run over by a car blowing a red with brakes locked up. It occurred to me that even though I could have done another mile or so, I was definitely done for the day :-D

Thank you all so much for the encouragement and advice. Iím already putting it to use!

On on another note, I joined this forum because I saw how clydes of all sizes were treated here and my first thread has not let me down. Itís also great to hear all the stories of weight loss. Cycling and dieting seem to work well :-)
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Old 05-20-18, 04:43 AM
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+1 to riding regularly and having fun.

Do not stress out too much about what to wear or how far you go each ride.

Get out and ride as often as you can and do rides you enjoy. Ride like you did when you were a kid. Explore new trails, see new streets, explore, etc.

Riding on a regular basis will toughen up your butt and help you get into a regular riding habit.

The miles will increase with time.
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Old 05-20-18, 08:21 AM
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Milton Keynes
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And if I may suggest, at this point focus on distance rather than speed. As your leg muscles get stronger and your weight decreases, speed will come in time.
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Old 05-25-18, 10:00 AM
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Being on the bike is about a thousand percent better than being on the couch!! You can do it and you are! One mile leads to more but don't stress over speed or cadence or any of the other stuff right now, just get out and ride as much as you can without pushing too hard and enjoy it. I was never a Super Clyde but I sure was totally out of shape and couldn't do a thing when I started.
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Old 05-25-18, 11:36 AM
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I was at 307 when I started last march, maybe a mile or two was a staggering effort,
all off road mountain biking
just by keeping at it, riding 3-4 times a week last summer and fall, I was able to cut 65 lbs
and it is still coming off at a lb per week now. going 5 days a week.

it is a slow process, takes a lot of time and effort to get back in any kind of shape, definitely worth the effort
my back feels better , BP meds have been cut in half. had to buy all new clothes

one thing I realize is it takes time, you can't expect anything instant to happen,

I have a good story about last night, I rode 20 miles on the road after work, I came upon another rider in the distance, figured I would catch him, and I did, I settled behind this guy and he was struggling
we were going up a small grade and I was ok and he was having trouble
when I passed him, I looked and wouldn't you know it, he was about 25-30 yrs old, oh ya baby
the old fat guy just bombed by a kid, I smiled the rest of the ride.
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Old 05-25-18, 11:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Arvadaman View Post
Do not stress out too much about what to wear
Honestly, I bought some Russell polyester shirt at Walmart and it hasnít let me down. However, I did just upgrade to a flouro yellow version tonight after nearly getting splattered the other day.

Tom L - you must have passed me then! Hahaha 😂


Thank you all for the encouragement. Just like everyone has been saying, Iíve been riding ďfunĒ places/routes and trying to avoid really nasty hills. However, due to the geography of where I live, the ability to avoid hills is somewhat limited. Iíve ridden up every hill I can and tried not to beat myself up too much if I hop off and walk the bike up.

Update: I just did a ďbigĒ loop ride today of 8.7 miles over rolling hills and Iím honestly very surprised I made it. Itís encouraging to hear from everyone that the miles and hills will come and, with proper diet, the pounds will go.

Thanks again for the encouragement in this thread - itís really meant a lot to me.
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Old 05-27-18, 10:21 PM
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I started at 350 or so, and would get about 2-4 miles in on a relatively flat stretch. A few hills that really kicked my rear end.

Got to a sort of hilly 6 mile loop that I regular with some frequency. Able to pull 10/15 miles comfortably right now at 300. I have pulled a few 20+ mile days of recent, and they have sure whipped me hard! Hoping to be able to do 30 miles with only medium butt kicking by the end of summer, but we'll see Good luck to ya! Just do what you can do without murdering yourself, that's the key part! It's ok to huff and puff and take breaks, feel the burn, tap those "deep" lungs and cough up some crud, but don't hit it so hard you're experiencing other negative side effects. Your butt will hurt, break it in! I have a wide bone set, shoulders and hips, I use a wider gel seat with the.... "perennial" grove? Helps alot! Big adjustment i've made is riding on the "back of my butt" where my pelvis digs into the seat. I used to ride more on my groin and it was no es bueno.

Get after it!!!!!!
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Old 05-29-18, 03:22 PM
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Originally Posted by iCanDoIt View Post
Hello all,

This is my first post (woot!). Iím 5í11Ē, 380lbs and the new owner of a Specialized FatBoy. I rode around my hilly neighborhood for 2 miles yesterday in a session with a lot of breaks for standing and catching my breath.

My question for clydes who are or have been above 350lbs: how many miles were you riding to begin with?
I can only second the notion here that TIME IN THE SADDLE is more important than mileage. There is no substitute. Greg LeMond said, "It doesn't get any easier, you just go faster." That is the truth. I would go out for an hour or hour and a half and ride only 12-15 miles. I can now do 15 miles in 45 minutes. Although mileage looks impressive, it is time sitting on that saddle that really counts.

As others have said, your body needs to get used to sitting on that thing for more than an hour at a time. You also need that time to figure out things like bike fit, nutrition and what to wear or in other words, what is comfortable. That does not come from short rides, it comes from longer rides were you can see what works for you and what does not. Hydration is another huge key. Staying hydrated especially in the hotter months is not easy.

So, focus on time initially. Set out for some timed rides of 30 minutes and try to work up from there. As your fitness increases you will see that mileage start to go up for that given time.

I also have found that using Strava (free app) is great as you can track you mileage and time out. If you don't want to use Strava, just keep a log at home. After 2 months, go back and look at your log and you can then see the improvement you have made. For me, this is a real motivational item to see how far I have come.

Whatever you do, just keep plugging away. What gets easier is the recovery. The rides will still be hard but the key will be is how much you are blown up after your ride. As your fitness gets better, your after ride recovery will also get better and you won't feel as gassed as you do now.

Keep going....

john
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Old 05-30-18, 07:19 AM
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On a hill, don't be embarrassed if you have to get off the bike and walk it up the hill. I started riding when I was around your weight as well. I used a specific hill (very steep and even hard to walk up) that I kept attempting to go up as a gauge on my success for my strength. Once I started making it up the hill without walking the bike up, I knew I was improving.

I started out at 5 miles a day when I was around your weight.
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Old 05-30-18, 09:17 AM
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Originally Posted by travbikeman View Post
On a hill, don't be embarrassed if you have to get off the bike and walk it up the hill. I started riding when I was around your weight as well. I used a specific hill (very steep and even hard to walk up) that I kept attempting to go up as a gauge on my success for my strength. Once I started making it up the hill without walking the bike up, I knew I was improving.

I started out at 5 miles a day when I was around your weight.
Yes... my first real ride this year was 27 miles on gravel, with some choice hills picked for the route. I made it up the first couple, but after that I had to walk. I just wasn't yet conditioned. However, on Monday I did a different route, another 25 miles on gravel with a few hills. I didn't have to walk up any of them, though after one of them I was a bit out of breath.

So after you get conditioned, hills will still be hard but you'll be able to climb up them. And of course with the more weight I've lost the easier I've found it to climb. Every pound you lose is one less pound you have to carry up a hill.
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Old 05-31-18, 06:11 PM
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I started out 5 miles with average speed ~8mph. After a month of cycling every weekday, I increased to 10miles and ~10mph. Then, after 3 months, I've been riding 20 miles at ~14mph for almost 2 years now. I ride on weekdays only.
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Old 06-01-18, 09:37 AM
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Starting cardio workouts can be hard for anyone of any size. Even for people who are in shape doing other types of exercises like strength training. It takes some time to get accustomed to it. I can tell a difference when I cross train versus do nothing but cardio. My cardio routines feel a little harder to finish, but I find the strength training makes general life easier because of all the muscles you use throughout a typical day.

I'm the sort of person that just listens to my body and pushes it the way that works the best for me. Calories burned do not care about distance or speed, so each workout is a calorie goal instead of one of the others. I'll ride a heavy bike a shorter distance through more hills and turns because it's a different workout then a road bike on a highway shoudler. Different is interesting and typically helps keep from getting bored or in a rut.

Working out has never gotten easier, so remember the worst feeling you had the first day and push yourself just up to that point. You get faster, go further, get stronger, or all the above. If you ride a light bike on a flat surface go faster and further, if you ride a heavy bike up hills for a shorter distance it shouldn't matter. Effort and calories are what you're tracking.

I've been working out consistantly for 5 years now and just the other day lifting I had to stop, sit down, catch my breath and cool myself off before I could continue. Basically the equivalent of stop, get off and push my bike up the hill. Bonking happens all the time.

All that said, I started at 7 miles a day, but I had been running for a while before an injury. Now I try to get 60-80 miles a week and 3 hours of lifting weights a week. With the last part I'm actually gaining weight but don't care.

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