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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.

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Old 08-14-09, 08:13 PM   #1
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Spinning uphill today! Woot!

When I first started riding again, in mid-May this year, hills were demon-spawns from the Devil himself! No matter what gear I'd use, I'd come to the point where I was huffin' and puffin' like the bad ol' wolfie after the little piggies. So, I figured why not use the lowest gear I can and huff-n-puff up the hill a little faster for all the work? *shrug*

This entire summer I've been commuting to school, usually 4 days each week, and riding for endurance on Fridays and Saturdays. I kept up the lowest possible gear routine on hills, figuring that was the best I could do, all the while envying the spinners who occassionally passed me on the uphill sections.

Today, I'm out for a ride to shake off the blues caused by a recent root canal, and I noticed I'm peddling really well going up one hill that used to quickly put me into panting-dog mode. I look down, and, indeed, I'm one gear higher than usual for the uphill. So on the next hilly spot, I upshift and spin up most of the hill before I hit the huff-n-puff wall.

Woot! It can be done, and I'm on the way to doing it for myself. Take heart fellow hill huff-n-puffers, after a while it DOES get easier and better.
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Old 08-15-09, 12:41 PM   #2
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When I started riding again this June, oh boy, did hills kill me. Like you, I was always going to the smallest front chainring. Finally got in decent enough shape to get out of the saddle, boy what a difference that made. Went to the middle front chainring and haven't hit the small one since (I think they call it the granny gear). As I get better, I'm now mostly in the largest front chainring.
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