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She rides!

Old 04-12-11, 07:10 PM
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Crazydad
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She rides!

So, I started riding again about a year ago to get healthier and rediscovered how much I love it. The problem is my wife has been, at times, somewhat hostile towards my riding due to "not spending time" with the family. Not to mention spending money on getting my mtb in shape and then getting a road bike. I know part of it is she is not used to me having a hobby, so I have rarely done things without her and the kids or spent money on myself, so this was a big change in behavior for me.

To try and help, I have been trying to get everyone to start riding so we can enjoy it as a family and get some exercise. It has been very frustrating because no one really wanted to ride. My 13yr old son has never liked bike riding and isn't even willing to get on his bike. My 11yr old daughter will sometimes putt around on the street and my 5yr old is still on training wheels. But the biggest problem is my wife HATES exercising and never wanted to even try. She is overweight like me, and knows it, but has been unwilling to do anything about it. Diet and/or exercise has been a no-go. I have tried asking her why and the best reply I have gotten is "it's too hard, and I don't have the time or energy".

Well, it looks like things may finally be changing! Some friends told us about a smoking deal they got on a cruise next February and we signed up to go too (we love cruises!). My wife said there was no way she was going to get into a bathing suit around our friends without losing weight. So she stopped buying cookies for her "stash" and is willing to focus on eating better. But the best of all is she realizes dieting alone will not do it. So the last couple of days I have been resurrecting her bike (1991 Marin Muir Wood) and tonight we went riding!!!!

It was a short ride (about a mile) because my 5yr old wanted to come, but it was a ride. Tomorrow we are going to do a longer ride (I'll take the youngest on a separate ride so she doesn't feel left out). And, my 11yr old is now really interested in eating right and exercising to lose the gut she got since she quit competitive cheer. While I'm not expecting any of them to get into riding as much as I have (I still hope it might happen), I am very excited they are wanting to do some type of exercising.
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Old 04-12-11, 07:48 PM
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Well as they say, sort of, the longest journey begins with small steps. Being a role model is a good thing. Hope you all stick with it!!

Bill
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Old 04-12-11, 08:07 PM
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I'm working on the same thing at my house... My 12 year old is VERY athletic, but doesn't eat well, mostly due to our bad example for the first 10plus years of her life. My wife is very overweight like I am and has a myriad of health issues/lots of pain and just doesn't exercise at all. We joined the Y and so far I'm the only one really using it, but a friend of hers has talked her into doing low impact water aerobics with her and she has a one year old recumbent trike in the garage with about 5 miles on it once she decides she's going to ride. My daughter loves to ride, but due to her height (she's 5'10" already and STILL growing) she's outgrown her current bike and I'm shopping for a road bike for her. She wants to do a triathlon with me when she's old enough. She swims competitively, plays basketball and tennis and wants to be the best at it so we've got to get her eating right to enable her to realize her dreams. My changes over the last year seem to be spurring them on to join me. It's also a lot easier for me to avoid the bad food if it's not in the house...
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Old 04-12-11, 08:16 PM
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Good for you and your wife!

Like bassjones, we were in somewhat the same boat. Both the wife and I are overweight. We made a conscious decision in December to change that. We both signed up for Weight Watchers and have changed our eating habits and the lbs are coming off. My wife has taken up running and is in the process of training for a 1/2 marathon. I started cycling by following her around with our two boys (6 and 3) as she ran. We started out small by just being in the neighborhood and have now progressed into following during her long runs. We also have been doing at least one family ride on the weekends. It has spurred both of the kids on to be more active. Both the 3yr old and the 6yr old are upset when they can't come along on my rides.

Both my wife and I looked at ourselves a few Sundays ago and wondered who we were. After getting up in the morning, going to Church we rushed home, changed clothes, loaded up the bikes and headed out for a 10 mile ride with the kids at our local park with a MUP. Four months before that a Sunday would have been get up, go to Church then come home and lounge on the couch for most of the day. We used to see those people out jogging, cycling etc and smirk with a comment of "look at those healthy people..." Now we're one of them. We're both proud of what we are doing and setting a good example for our children.

Last edited by beatsrunning; 04-12-11 at 08:25 PM. Reason: added more
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Old 04-12-11, 08:18 PM
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Excellent!
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I stop for people / whose right of way I honor / but not for no one.


Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."
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Old 04-12-11, 09:11 PM
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Thanks everyone, it is definitely an answered prayer. I just hope it continues, not only for my wife's health, but so my kids don't grow up with our bad habits.
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Old 04-12-11, 10:48 PM
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How cool! I'm glad your wife took that ride with you.

My husband wanted us to get into cycling together last summer, but on our first ride on borrowed bikes, I was miserable. The bike hurt to ride (the seat was awful!), and I couldn't muster any power because I was too tall for the bike. A few months later, when we were in Hawaii, we took out some cruisers (that fit us!) on a flat path that followed the coastline, and had an absolute blast. After that, I became more excited about riding again.

So my suggestion to put your wife in a position to enjoy cycling is to make sure her bike fits her properly and that her seat is a comfortable as can be. Then just have fun!
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Old 04-12-11, 11:11 PM
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There are "rules" for encouraging a spouse/partner to ride:
1. Never pass judgement - I sat on the couch for the last 20 years so who am I to say what my wife should or should not do?
2. My wife did decide to start cycling with me - we bought her a bike in the same price range as my ride. She rides a Ruby and I ride a Roubaix. We both deserve equal tools to do the job.
3. I rode through the winter - she decided not to. She's starting again slowly. Its her choice.

Congrats - I really enjoy riding with my wife. Adds a neat dimension.

HTH, magohn

Last edited by magohn; 04-12-11 at 11:15 PM.
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