Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

Please HELP

Old 08-02-12, 04:03 PM
  #26  
Bill Kapaun
Senior Member
 
Bill Kapaun's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Mid Willamette Valley, Orygun
Posts: 10,803

Bikes: 86 RockHopper,2008 Specialized Globe. Both upgraded to 9 speeds.

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 661 Post(s)
Liked 26 Times in 22 Posts
I'd suggest you pick a day in the very near future and see how far you CAN ride.
That would actually give you a clue if it's doable.
Doing 180 miles is far tougher than doing 20 miles 9 times.
There's things like lactic acid build up and you have to know what to EAT, to replace minerals etc. that help your muscles to function.

How's the terrain? If you have to do a bunch of climbing, even if it's gentle, that can knock you way down energy wise.
Bill Kapaun is offline  
Old 08-02-12, 04:16 PM
  #27  
Myosmith
Lover of Old Chrome Moly
 
Myosmith's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: NW Minnesota
Posts: 2,916
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 137 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 9 Times in 8 Posts
You're Crazy, but I like crazy people

- Do some long, slow rides increasing your distance each time
- Rest for the last few days before the trip
- Set a reasonable and sustainable pace like 13-15 mph
- Plan for adequate hydration and good nutrition during the whole trip
- Make sure your bike, clothing and equipment are in good repair and appropriate (don't try this in new shoes or with a new chamois)
- Carry basic tools and spare tube and parts (spare shift and brake cables, a quick-link or two in case of chain problems, at least one spare tube and a patch kit)
- Plan for frequent stops, preferably at places with food, water and restrooms
- Give yourself more time than you think you will need
- Make sure you have a Plan B in case of mechanical or physical breakdown

I have a friend who recently started cycling on an old Schwinn 10-speed. He rides with a motorcycle helmet and jeans. When he showed up at a recent charity ride he got some strange looks until he finished the 80-mile route in the middle of the pack despite some wet and windy conditions. Not long after, he set out cross country for several days covering a few hundred miles. He is UberFred and one of the toughest cyclists I know.

Those who say it can't be done should stand aside for those who are doing it.

Last edited by Myosmith; 08-02-12 at 04:43 PM.
Myosmith is offline  
Old 08-02-12, 04:23 PM
  #28  
chefisaac
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: cherry hill, nj
Posts: 6,145
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 29 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by i need help View Post
some people on this forum are pretty smart not going to lie. but i still need help with the maps
Contact Adventure Cycling. They are really nice people!
chefisaac is offline  
Old 08-02-12, 04:32 PM
  #29  
ManPowerdTravel
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 14
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
*It took me a while to get my response together so Myosmith beat me to basically everything, lol. I second his post.

The only thing I have to add is that it is CRUCIAL to have a seat that will be comfortable for the ride. Test out your saddle on a ride closer to 80 or 90 miles. When I just commuted shorter distances on my old saddle, it was fine, but rides breaking over 60 miles became quite difficult to complete, not from fatigue, but from discomfort. I changed my seat and now my ride distance is more limited by my fitness/endurance than by my comfort level. It's very annoying to feel that your legs are still capable of pedaling, but you're limited by discomfort/pain/numbness. It's very awesome when you can ride and ride and ride.

Last edited by ManPowerdTravel; 08-02-12 at 04:38 PM.
ManPowerdTravel is offline  
Old 08-02-12, 04:56 PM
  #30  
SuperGregNo1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Seattle Area
Posts: 128

Bikes: MGX Atlas

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
How are you getting back home?
SuperGregNo1 is offline  
Old 08-02-12, 05:29 PM
  #31  
treadtread
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 1,259

Bikes: 2012 Specialized Sirrus

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Sorry to be the dampener, but there are parts of your plan (or lack of it) that are frankly, scary. You need to plan to stay overnight somewhere. Change tires. Buy bar ends. Talk to the touring forum.

Just load your bike onto a damn Greyhound. If you must, get off one stop before Chico and pedal.
treadtread is offline  
Old 08-02-12, 08:11 PM
  #32  
RolandArthur
Senior Member
 
RolandArthur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Zaandam, Netherlands
Posts: 104
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by i need help View Post
some people on this forum are pretty smart not going to lie. but i still need help with the maps
Hi INH,

Riding a mountain bike should be no problem. Just pace yourself. 180 miles is a lot for one day, I rode 350 km with a headwind once, took me 18 hours and left me in pain for a week after. I didn´t wear bibs and chaving started at the 100 km mark. Now I ride 80 to 120 km maximum a day on a road trip.

If I can offer some advice: Get some panniers, riding with a back pack will get uncomfortable very fast. Get a simple tent so you can camp and split the ride into managable parts like 60 miles a day. That way you will be sure to be more or less fit when you arrive at your destination. Riding 180 miles to get somewhere and not being able to enjoy it would be a shame.
RolandArthur is offline  
Old 08-02-12, 11:16 PM
  #33  
nashvillwill
Senior Member
 
nashvillwill's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: East Bay
Posts: 274

Bikes: Globe Vienna 3 Disc

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Just in case. Have a plan B.

Take BART to Richmond (I would suggest that anyways, it will be less than $5. How else are you going to cross the Bay Bridge?)
Amtrak's Coastal Starlight goes straight to Chico. If for whatever reason you can't/won't take Amtrak, at least have the stations notated on map. That way, you know where transit is. If nothing else than to have a (relatively) safe place to stay and even beg for money if you have to.

Also, try to get some pannier bags. That backpack will ruin the trip. Beg/borrow of you must. I wish I had an extra I could give you. If nothing else, find a rack and a milk crate.

Finally, always leave a note with someone you know of the details. When, where, how. Give a general route if you can.
nashvillwill is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 07:59 AM
  #34  
Jim Kukula
Senior Member
 
Jim Kukula's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Utah
Posts: 589

Bikes: Thorn Nomad Mk2, 1996 Trek 520, Workcycles Transport, Brompton

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
for maps, just get some county maps from local stores. you can probably buy more maps as you go. no point in planning too much because you might take a wrong turn or a bridge is out and you have to change anyway.

forget 13 mph or whatever the time google estimates. I ride about 10mph. you don't want to get exhausted! just take it nice and slow, especially to start. 24 hours is a better estimate of elapsed time for planning purposes. leave at 3AM!

Stop every hour or so and walk around and stretch.

important --> eat and drink steadily. you mostly just need carbs. I can get really good bread and I just eat bread a lot of the time. eat a bit at least every hour. you need fuel!
Jim Kukula is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 08:11 AM
  #35  
alan s 
Senior Member
 
alan s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 6,660
Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1320 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 45 Times in 29 Posts
I predict you will not make it on knobby tires, and could possibly make it on slicks, but will be exhausted. Keep up the energy, fluid and electrolyte intake. Hope for a strong tailwind. Good luck!
alan s is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 10:34 AM
  #36  
MK313
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 782
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Lots of this will probably have been mentioned, but I can't remember everything I read over the last two pages, so here goes:

If you have the $, get some slick tires. Over 180 miles, that will make a huge difference. if you have extra $, i'd also get bar ends if you don't have them 7 possibly an aero bar if you can find one that will fit on your handlebars. Over the course of 180 miles, both of those could be very useful.

Like someone recommended, I'd suggest doing a long ride this weekend to see how far you can make it. If you can do 100 or so, you might be ok. If you are whipped after 50, you might want to look at alternatives. Also, bring what you think you'll be bringing for the trip on the trial run. Some backpacks are comfortable, some are not. you may find that your back is killing you.

Are you planning to sleep overnight somewhere, or ride straight through?

I'd look at keeping the weight as low as possible. I'm not sure about the terrain, but 4 water bottles is a lot. If you can buy water along the way, I'd cut that back to two. I don't remember what else you were bringing, but I'd try to keep that as light as possible too.

Good luck & be sure to post here about how the trip went.
MK313 is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 10:39 AM
  #37  
MK313
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 782
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I just googled it & it looks like your mountain bike has front & rear shocks. If you can lock them out, that should help you a lot. If not, that will make the ride a bit more challenging.
MK313 is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 10:47 AM
  #38  
SlimRider
Banned
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Northern California
Posts: 5,804

Bikes: Raleigh Grand Prix, Giant Innova, Nishiki Sebring, Trek 7.5FX

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
You should get an Airzound, wear bright colors, carry some pepper spray, a pocket knife, tools, a flat kit, matches, and a spare tube.

Also have a credit card, just in case!

Try to break this trip into 2 days...

This weekend ride for seventy miles and see how that goes first. Like 35 out and 35 back! Keep track of the amount of water intake required during that little RT trek.

Get some slicks!

Good Luck!

Last edited by SlimRider; 08-03-12 at 03:09 PM.
SlimRider is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 11:12 AM
  #39  
PatrickGSR94
Senior Member
 
PatrickGSR94's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Memphis TN area
Posts: 7,428

Bikes: 2011 Felt Z85 (road/commuter), 2006 Marin Pine Mountain (utility/commuter E-bike), 1995 KHS Alite 1000 (gravel grinder)

Mentioned: 25 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 672 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by i need help View Post
not 25 years old yet. and even if i could i need to do it this way
Is that how it is these days? I visited SanFran in 2002 when I was 22 years old, and me and 3 other classmates (all younger than me) rented a car on my CC and split the cost 4 ways.
PatrickGSR94 is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 11:38 AM
  #40  
no motor?
Senior Member
 
no motor?'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 6,083

Bikes: Specialized Hardrock

Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 950 Post(s)
Liked 53 Times in 41 Posts
Originally Posted by tjspiel View Post
It helps me psychologically to break seemingly big things into smaller ones. So don't think about the 180 miles. Think about 20 at a time if that seems more manageable. 30 would be even better because after the first 30 miles you're already 1/6 of the way there. That's not so bad.

Remembering myself at an age under 25 I would caution that if there is a woman behind your drive to do this, be careful that it won't be a wasted effort.
I can't as anything that hasn't been mentioned about bicycling already, but I can tell you from my motorcycling experience that he's right about breaking the trip down mentally into smaller sections. Don't think of riding from point a - b, think about riding from point a - z with all the letters/sections in between.

I think a lot of us want to know how you do on this trip too, please keep us posted and remember pictures are appreciated.
no motor? is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 02:14 PM
  #41  
Artkansas 
Pedaled too far.
 
Artkansas's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: La Petite Roche
Posts: 12,853
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by RolandArthur View Post
If I can offer some advice: Get some panniers, riding with a back pack will get uncomfortable very fast. Get a simple tent so you can camp and split the ride into managable parts like 60 miles a day. That way you will be sure to be more or less fit when you arrive at your destination. Riding 180 miles to get somewhere and not being able to enjoy it would be a shame.
I'd go the opposite direction. Find a motel at about the 100 mile mark. Make a reservation. That will give you a big goal half way there, with a rest stop, a shower, a meal and a chance to make adjustments. As long as this trip is, you want to keep the weight down, tents and camping will only slow you down and make more work along the way. Stay focused. Do it at 100 miles so you get a century the first day and your second day is easier.

Definitely spend time on your maps and get some route help, maybe in the NorCal regional forums. A quick check on Mapquest gave a distance of 180 miles as you said. But that was by freeway. As a quick test, I dragged the route off onto a side road, as a bike would be more likely to use and the distance dropped to 167 miles. But the maps don't tell you the quality of the road, thats why you want to check with people who have ridden the Central Valley.
__________________
"He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

Last edited by Artkansas; 08-03-12 at 02:28 PM.
Artkansas is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 02:15 PM
  #42  
Artkansas 
Pedaled too far.
 
Artkansas's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: La Petite Roche
Posts: 12,853
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by PatrickGSR94 View Post
Is that how it is these days? I visited SanFran in 2002 when I was 22 years old, and me and 3 other classmates (all younger than me) rented a car on my CC and split the cost 4 ways.
There is stuff he hasn't told us about his reasons for needing to pedal the distance, my guess is a bet or a woman.
__________________
"He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.
Artkansas is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 02:56 PM
  #43  
SlimRider
Banned
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Northern California
Posts: 5,804

Bikes: Raleigh Grand Prix, Giant Innova, Nishiki Sebring, Trek 7.5FX

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Artkansas View Post
There is stuff he hasn't told us about his reasons for needing to pedal the distance, my guess is a bet or a woman.
It could quite possibly be both!
SlimRider is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 02:58 PM
  #44  
Commodus
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Burnaby, BC
Posts: 4,144
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Artkansas View Post
There is stuff he hasn't told us about his reasons for needing to pedal the distance, my guess is a bet or a woman.
Could be. Or, sometimes you just a crazy idea in your head and can't let it go.
Commodus is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 03:05 PM
  #45  
treadtread
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 1,259

Bikes: 2012 Specialized Sirrus

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Either way, and despite all my misgivings, we wants photos of the ride
treadtread is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 03:07 PM
  #46  
Rhodabike
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Potashville
Posts: 1,079

Bikes: Reynolds 531P road bike, Rocky Mountain Metropolis, Rocky Mountain Sherpa 10, Look 566

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
You might want to check out the touring forum, if you haven't already. This sounds more like a tour than a commute and you can get more specific advice there.
Rhodabike is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 03:10 PM
  #47  
Rhodabike
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Potashville
Posts: 1,079

Bikes: Reynolds 531P road bike, Rocky Mountain Metropolis, Rocky Mountain Sherpa 10, Look 566

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by MK313 View Post
Lots of this will probably have been mentioned, but I can't remember everything I read over the last two pages, so here goes:

If you have the $, get some slick tires. Over 180 miles, that will make a huge difference. if you have extra $, i'd also get bar ends if you don't have them 7 possibly an aero bar if you can find one that will fit on your handlebars. Over the course of 180 miles, both of those could be very useful...
If you have any experience with clip-on aero bars, that might also help, especially if the road is out in the open and windy. I met a fellow years ago who did randonneurs up to 300 km (about 200 miles) using a Cannondale hybrid bike with aero clip-ons on the handlebars.
Rhodabike is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 03:21 PM
  #48  
megalowmatt
Senior Member
 
megalowmatt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: North County San Diego
Posts: 1,664
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
First time reading the thread I thought there has to be a woman involved.

While having not ridden that distance in one shot, I have done my share of metric centuries. I would personally split it into three days and stay two nights in hotels.

For me at least, 60 miles is a comfortable distance and I don't feel beat up when I'm done.
megalowmatt is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 03:40 PM
  #49  
tjspiel
Senior Member
 
tjspiel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Minneapolis
Posts: 8,112
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 50 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by megalowmatt View Post
First time reading the thread I thought there has to be a woman involved.

While having not ridden that distance in one shot, I have done my share of metric centuries. I would personally split it into three days and stay two nights in hotels.

For me at least, 60 miles is a comfortable distance and I don't feel beat up when I'm done.
60 miles is about right for me too. I put in close to a 60 mile day (total but not all at once) every couple of weeks. The closest thing I've ever done to what the OP is attempting is a 70 mile ride on studded tires after months of not going more than 15 miles in one ride.

Now, winter riding is just more work in general so even my 6 mile commute was often a pretty good workout, but nothing like 70 miles, - even though the roads were mostly clear. I was done after that ride, - closest to bonking I've ever gotten. Slept most of the rest of the afternoon.

What's hard for me to gauge is that all my long rides have been done in groups and at a brisk pace which makes it both easier and harder. On my own I could slow down when I needed to recover but being in a group can help keep you going and the time passes more quickly. Fatigue is one problem, but boredom could be another after spending hour upon hour on a bike. Hopefully they'll be some decent scenery on the way. Maybe bring along an mp3 player with a few audio books.

I do find the whole idea intriguing and it could be a bit of an adventure. There's a 150 mile ride I'd love to do in one day. I know people that have. The last 70 miles would be almost all trail through some beautiful country. I know I could do it in 2 days, but one would be awesome.

Last edited by tjspiel; 08-03-12 at 03:54 PM.
tjspiel is offline  
Old 08-03-12, 06:52 PM
  #50  
Papa Tom
Senior Member
 
Papa Tom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Long Island, New York
Posts: 3,822

Bikes: The same GT Outpost Mountain bike I've been riding since 1996, although I modify it throughout the year for commuting, touring, and recreational riding.

Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 536 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
>>> i dont think people are remembering tho i am on a MOUNTAIN bike.<<<<

I caught that on the first read. I ride a mountain bike on all my tours. The cushioning from the fat tires is better, the knobbies can handle all kinds of roadside muck, and the bike frame seems to support my luggage really well. If you're more concerned about speed than any of these things, I'd second replacing the knobby tires with a set of slicks. I sometimes throw on a set of Specialized Nimbus tires for this purpose.

As others have suggested, is there a possibility you can split the trip into two - or even three days? I am going to be 50 this year, too, and I have some great memories of my multi-day bike trips, the latest of which I took two weeks ago. 180 miles, for someone who typically only does 20 a day, is a pretty big stretch, but 60 miles is definitely doable.

Last edited by Papa Tom; 08-03-12 at 06:57 PM.
Papa Tom is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.