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Do you have a group that you ride with?

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Do you have a group that you ride with?

Old 09-29-15, 02:21 PM
  #1  
Barrettscv 
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Do you have a group that you ride with?

Most of my rides are solo rides, but joining a group has benefits.

What keeps you riding with a group?

Are the group members younger than you?

How far do you typically ride? How fast?

Is it a social group that has activities other than cycling?
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Old 09-29-15, 02:33 PM
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I ride with a couple of groups. Some older, some younger, some faster, some slower.

Speed? Really depends on who shows up. Sometimes its 15 mph average, sometimes its 20 mph average.

Weekday evening rides are usually 25-30 miles, weekend rides usually 30-65 miles.

Some of the guys I also MTB and kayak with outside of road cycling.

What keeps me riding with a group? I'm social and I like to ride bikes. Scratches both itches.

When I can't find a group to ride with, I do solo rides. 20 miles solo yesterday evening for example. Just putting around as our Tuesday night group rides are usually faster pace.
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Old 09-29-15, 03:25 PM
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Solo only, except short rides with my wife. I have organized and led "rides" for two groups of folks - from our church, and a group of 70+ riders. Both went for awhile, then fizzled. I did some group riding with two clubs, but I did not like it.

I have lots of opportunities for social activities otherwise.

At my age, I so enjoy riding at my own speed (very slow) and stopping and talking with folks. I rode 20 miles yesterday, and stopped 3 times for nice discussions with folks along the way. This would likely drive most riders nuts. Absolutely NO interest in speed or caring how far I ride - mostly how long I ride is the only measure, and then, of course, always, Smiles per hour.

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Old 09-29-15, 03:27 PM
  #4  
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Yes.

I enjoy other people, riding with them too. It's a very intimate activity. This group has been riding together since '96. I joined in '98. I like the challenge and the variety. No two rides are alike, even on the same route, though we try to use a different route every week.

One female stoker is older than I am. New people join, old people leave. Now, most folks are 5-15 years younger than I. I used to lead the A group. When I got too old to hang with them, I started riding tandem with my wife, which put us into the B or C groups. That injected new fun and challenges.

The original group riding objective was to train people to do the one-day STP and RAMROD. We used to do 50-100 mile rides. Now that we've aged, it's down to 45-60 miles. All rides typically are 50' climbing/mile. Depending on the sub-group, we average from 14-18 mph in the saddle. All rides include a coffee stop.

The major social activity is the relatively mandatory visit to a brewpub after every ride. No other group social activities any more. A few of us used to organize group theater shows, etc., but those organizers got too old and we don't see them much. Most of us see each other socially at parties, dinners, etc. We're all good friends.

We're probably down to 15 regulars now, though our email group has about 120 people on it.
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Old 09-29-15, 03:44 PM
  #5  
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I ride solo, apart from a ride every month or two with some friends. Sometimes I think it would benefit my cycling to ride with groups, but I have a real problem with routine and conforming to other people's timetables since I retired, and I know that I am no good at trying to fit in with the regular timescales that are necessary in cycling clubs.

It's my loss I know, but I'll just have to carry on enjoying my irregular riding habits, even if it makes me a slower rider.
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Old 09-29-15, 04:29 PM
  #6  
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I avoid large and/or tightly packed group rides.

However, I used to enjoy weekly or semi-weekly rides with the local YMCA, before they discontinued the program. We generally got about a dozen or so riders, mostly in my "pretty decent, definitely not competition material" category.
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Old 09-29-15, 04:46 PM
  #7  
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I commute 2/3 solo and about 1/3 with my daughter.

There is always a group ride Saturday. The group is usually 50 or so members and anywhere from 5 to 25 may show up on any given weekend. They're always mountain climbfests ... 8000 or so feet of climbing. To be honest, the group is wonderful. The experience is enormously enhanced by being in a friendly and supportive group.

If I ride Sundays, that's typically as short solo ride in the hood.

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Old 09-29-15, 05:04 PM
  #8  
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Most of my rides are solo from 10 to 15 miles while puttering around town and a 40 to 60 mile every week. I ride with a bike club also who are almost all younger. I'm one of the slower riders in the club but there are several others who ride at similar speed and we seem to end up riding together on most rides. There are about 1300 members in the club and about 10% of the membership will show up at a ride. There are different distance loops from, say 25 miles, 45 miles or 65 miles and a century ride each month during summer. There is no ride leader but riders are sent off in 3 waves with faster first and us slow riders bringing up the rear. The ride starts are crowded but this does not last long. Within 5 minutes we are well spread out. In summer, the club has beginner rides as part of the regular Sunday ride with a group leader to clue in newbys on safe riding in a group and on highways.

I enjoy these group rides even though I and a few other are lantern rouge from the get go. At the end of a ride, the club sets up a 'hospitality tent' with cold drinks and snacks. This is the equivalent of a tailgate party minus the beer and we can sit around discussing Donald Trump or the best place to buy tires or what have you.
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Old 09-29-15, 06:34 PM
  #9  
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I telecommute so most of my weekday rides are solo. But on the weekend I try to find a group.

There are 2 local clubs and a LBS that runs a ride.

One club has a "B" ride that's more like a "C"... average about 13.5-14mph over 30 miles and they go around all the hills.
The other club has a B+ that does 15-16mph over 40 miles and they go up most hills.
The LBS has a single group and it's usually a A- that does 16.5-18mph over 35-45 miles and they do all the hills.

So it depends on how I feel, where the ride is going and if I have anything to do later that day.
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Old 09-29-15, 06:38 PM
  #10  
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What keeps you riding with a group?
Helps keep me progressing, plus it's fun. Being 6'2" on a 61cm frame, a group is also a much better draft than most anyone else I can get behind.

Are the group members younger than you?
Not all, but many (most) are.

How far do you typically ride? How fast?
30-40 miles, 15-16 average. That's generally slower than the group by 1-2 MPH, but we all start together.

Is it a social group that has activities other than cycling?
Not really, at least not as it affects me.
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Old 09-29-15, 06:42 PM
  #11  
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Nearly all of my riding is solo. I like doing group and organized rides, but I live pretty far away from cities of any size, so a group ride typically requires a 70-140 mile round trip. It's easier to just go for a bike ride. Added to that, I'm out of town during the week, so I have to make choices about how I want to spend the precious weekend, including allowance for wifey time and church responsibilities.
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Old 09-30-15, 01:34 AM
  #12  
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I almost always ride alone. The reasons vary depending on the type of riding I'm doing.

Touring. Probably my favourite reason to be on a bike, several hours a day roaming new places, sometimes for weeks at a time. It's highly meditative, for me, for long periods I am just "in the moment" and company would be irrelevant if not intrusive. Plus when you tour alone you talk to strangers when off-bike. With a companion, you just talk to one another and miss a lot of new experiences as a result.

Training. I don't train as seriously as I used to, but if you're training effectively you need to do the workout you need to do, not ride at the speed or intensity of those around you. For this reason I haven't joined one of the many clubs in my new area, because I wouldn't bother with the group rides that are their staple activity. When I used to help run a club we would do more group stuff to teach the kids to ride in a bunch, draft, manage contact and so on, but that was quite specifically focussed.

JRA. Usually spontaneous and unplanned, so there's usually nobody to ride with. Having said that, there are a couple I go out with from time to time. They aren't serious cyclists but enjoy getting out on the bike, so we just potter around for a while. But it's more a sociable day in which bikes happen to be involved, than a "bike ride".
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Old 09-30-15, 03:45 AM
  #13  
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No group rides yet. We do have events, some regionally prestigious though I have not signed up yet. There is one group that rides on Wednesday mornings that is a pie ride that attracts the 65-80 comfort bikers. Most of us roadies are individualistic.
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Old 09-30-15, 08:57 AM
  #14  
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Often I ride alone; however, I meet a group of ladies from the gym and we do a Saturday morning ride. Its at a good pace and we have good conversation. Sometimes we are joined by others as we do the ride at a very popular route. To be honest, I enjoy the solo rides a little more.
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Old 09-30-15, 10:18 AM
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Like others I mostly ride solo, but I do have a local group I ride with regularly. They are a cycling "Meetup" group: the rides are not usually overly fast and there are a range of cyclists of varying abilities riding everything from mountain bikes to hybrids to road bikes. Occasionally the group will do some more challenging rides in terms of distance/hills, but this is not a group of roadies keeping a fast pace, with few exceptions the point of the rides are often as much about the destination/scenery as the ride itself.

Ages range from people in their 20's through to folks in their 70s, though I'd peg most riders somewhere in their 40s. The group organizes everything from bike camping trips through to combined bike/kayak trips and will frequently plan themed rides. Rides typically range in distance from about 50 km through to 115 km or so, and occasionally the rides will take in some pretty challenging climbs. The pace of most casual rides averages around 20 to 23 km/hr (12-13 mph) while more aggressive rides will average around 25/26 km/hr (15-16 mph).

I keep going back because the rides are so much fun! Socially, the group is fantastic and I really look forward to any rides I can make it to.

Obviously these are not intense training rides, but I find I get a good workout on the longer rides even if the pace is on the slower side.
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Old 09-30-15, 03:01 PM
  #16  
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I usually ride solo, or with my wife. About once a month I will ride with my brother.

My rides will vary from a minimum of 10 miles to the upper 20's. These are generally faster paced and sometimes I'll try to hunt someone down or hang with a better rider. And there are times when I am just trying to just get back (ripe early-spoil late).

With my wife it is usually 10-20 miles at her pace. We do have a lot of fun on these rides and I really enjoy her grumbling, at times, going uphill and then her joy on the descent.

With my brother it can be anywhere from 25 to 45 miles. I recently went with about 8 people from his work and had a great time. I think riding in a small group (less than 10) is great. Seems like the perfect size to keep track of everyone and still be able to enjoy each other's company.

Mountain biking is usually solo since our son moved to Arizona. My wife really likes to go on easy trails. I can't ever imagine mountain biking with a large group.

John
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Old 09-30-15, 03:49 PM
  #17  
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I often ride with the same group as Biker395 (above) on weekends, for good climbing rides, usually close to 100 miles (sometimes more) with about 1,000 climbing feet per ten miles. All good fun and really wonderful people, super friendly and supportive.

Tues. and Thur. evening I ride with my local club, Orange County Rebel Riders (OCRR) and the pace works out to between 14 and 16 mph depending on how much climbing we do and how motivated we are to go fast (which varies). We have a core group of about ten but it often expands a bit to 16 or 18 riders. These rides start at 6:00 PM and are 20 to 30 miles long with (usually) a couple thousand feet of climbing.

Mon.-Wed.-Fri. I commute to work solo. Not a long ride, just 19 miles round trip with a Metro train ride in the middle.

Ages vary but most are of the 45 - 68 range with a few younger exceptions.

What keeps me riding is the fun. Hey, we're not getting paid for this! I guess there's health-fitness benefit too but no, it's the fun that keeps it going strong.

Rick / OCRR
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Old 09-30-15, 08:01 PM
  #18  
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Good questions. Started with a group last year now most rides are with them. They are one of the fastest here though the emphasis is safety, much needed with Miami drivers. We try not to drop anyone and will stop for mechanicals. Some hold traffic at short lights.

We ride four times per week. Tuesday and Thursday about 20 of us for faster riders often including some of Florida's fastest racers. We go 8 miles to Homestead Speedway and go on 6 mile loops on outer roads at 21, 23 and whatever on third loop. So I usually do two loops and average 19-21 for 30 miles including bunch of turns but no hills.

Saturday we usually go 45-60+ miles at around 18.5-19 MPH with bursts of 24 for 4-6 miles. Usually 35-55 riders. Sunday is 35 mile trip to Key Biscayne up big bridge for 15-20 riders.

At 70 I am about the oldest. Some in 20s, more in 30s, most 40s and 50s and some 60s. Also about a third are women many whom are as strong as the men.

We have two other groups for those who are beginning or prefer 14-16 or 17-18; our group is supposed to go 21 or less but we've gotten stronger!

Mostly riding however we have a few parties per year and we often hang out at a Starbucks or similar place after or near end of ride. Very friendly supportive group.

While we have uniforms there is no charge or forms to ride. We have rules about pace lines, no earphones etc. We do buy kits for children's charities and ride with other orgsnized groups. We support other charitable rides.

All in all a very nice way to get faster, ride safer and enjoy others. Have made a number of friends would have never met.
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Old 09-30-15, 08:02 PM
  #19  
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I ride with several groups:

Local shop ride: relatively fast, hard workouts at 20-25 mph pace for 50 miles most saturdays. Goal is a good workout.

Randonneuring: moderate pace, 125+ miles every month or two. Lots of long conversations and time with friends. Pace depends on conditions and distance, but typically 15-18 mph riding avg. Goal is finishing and having fun.

Tandem club: moderate effort at 15-17 mph, the rides always end with group meal, and happen every month or two. Goal is socializing.

I guess the answers are "it depends".

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Old 09-30-15, 08:17 PM
  #20  
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What keeps you riding with a group?
Combination of socializing and having someone to push me.

Are the group members younger than you?
Mostly.

How far do you typically ride? How fast?
Wednesday evening group ride is limited by daylight this time of year at about 20, with longest around 30 in the summer. Group size is 20-50 depending on weather. Average speed over the distance for the front group is 19ish, though average is deceptive given warmup, cooldown, and the inevitable Strava segments.

Sunday morning breakfast ride is a social ride, conversational pace, with breakfast at the turnaround. Around 15 miles I'd guess. Speed is probably 15ish.

Is it a social group that has activities other than cycling?
Wednesday evening, we have a meal after every ride. Usually a pot-luck at somebody's house, sometimes at a restaurant.
Sunday is all about socializing and food.
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Old 09-30-15, 08:38 PM
  #21  
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What keeps you riding with a group?

The challenge.
Riding with others who are faster is motivating: "Don't let that wheel go."


Are the group members younger than you?

Yes.


Is it a social group that has activities other than cycling?

No. Meet for the "Tuesday evening ride", go as hard you can to stay with the fast guys, limp home.
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Old 09-30-15, 10:49 PM
  #22  
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I mostly ride alone. Every Tuesday during Daylight time, I host a 20-30 mile road ride for my club. Speed averages 12-16 mph depending on who shows up and how we feel that day. We usually have 5-10 riders, sometimes more.

Most every month, I host a gravel road ride of 20-40 miles with 10-20 riders. Speed is usually 10-12 mph.

Several times a year, I lead a downtown awareness ride for the club. BATTY - Bikes Are Traffic Too, Y'all. 10-30 riders. 10-12 mph.

What keeps you riding with a group?
I like people.

Are the group members younger than you?
Some are younger, but many are around my age, some older.

How far do you typically ride? How fast?
Varies greatly. Never really fast.

Is it a social group that has activities other than cycling?
The club is also involved in bike advocacy and community improvement activities. We also get together for food and drinks.
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Old 10-01-15, 03:50 AM
  #23  
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What keeps you riding with a group? Riding with faster riders is challenging and provides motivation to push myself. Unlike many riders, I have no desire to follow Joe Friel's or any other individuals plans for improvement. Don't care about max this or max that.....

Are the group members younger than you? Since most are stronger than me, yes they are younger than my 65 years.

How far do you typically ride? Tuesday's and today's morning ride will be 40+ miles plus an added 20+ of my own. Saturday's LBS ride is 32/38+ miles plus my add on. How fast? 21mph to 24mph for the distance depending on riders and weather. Cool part is that none of the riders race, except for some of the winter Snowbirds who show up.

Is it a social group that has activities other than cycling? The local club-yes, the group of riders out of the club who I ride with-not really.
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Old 10-01-15, 11:07 AM
  #24  
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I often ride the Saturday morning "fast social ride". This is usually 12-15 riders. Ages vary. A few in their 30s. I'm about to be 70. Most in late 40s or 50s. Due to the roads most of the time we have to ride single pace line which reduces the opportunity for a really effective draft unless there is a head wind-not the draft you would get in a pack. Our rides have lots of rollers and grades, no flats. Wind is usually 10-15 mph. We average around 18.5 to 19.5 mph. But this is a bit misleading as the effort on the hills and some grades are "hard" at lest for me. The ride isn't a steady state effort but no real attacks. Just hard effort going up those darn hills. I'm deep in the red zone on those hills.
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Old 10-01-15, 11:07 AM
  #25  
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Originally Posted by bowzette View Post
I often ride the Saturday morning "fast social ride". This is usually 12-15 riders. Ages vary. A few in their 30s. I'm about to be 70. Most in late 40s or 50s. Due to the roads most of the time we have to ride single pace line which reduces the opportunity for a really effective draft unless there is a head wind-not the draft you would get in a pack. Our rides have lots of rollers and grades, no flats. Wind is usually 10-15 mph. We average around 18.5 to 19.5 mph. But this is a bit misleading as the effort on the hills and some grades are "hard" at lest for me. The ride isn't a steady state effort but no real attacks. Just hard effort going up those darn hills. I'm deep in the red zone on those hills.
Forgot: 50-60 miles
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