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Newbie Bike Rider Here

Old 01-28-13, 05:15 PM
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chrisdorman
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Newbie Bike Rider Here

Hey everyone!

I began biking for the first time today. I have been doing the "couch to 5k" running program for the last 2 months but found it too demanding on my legs. Shin splints were the norm and I had bad knee pain. So I decided to ditch running, and buy a bike. Are there any road bike programs out there like the "couch to 5k" running program? I'm really not sure what goals I should be reaching for as a beginner. My first ride today I biked 3.1 miles and had a pace of 10mph. Legs couldn't handle much more.
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Old 01-28-13, 07:20 PM
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ericm979
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Beginner goal: ride around and have fun. Don't do too much too soon. Worry about "training" later. At this point it won't make much difference in your rate of improvement. You can get all serious later.
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Old 01-28-13, 07:32 PM
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Lanceoldstrong
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Welcome to the tribe!
ericm979 is right about fun. Fun First then goals.

My goals early on were:

First 5 miler
First 10 miler
First 20 miler
First 30 miler
First 1/2 Century (50 Miler)
First Metric (100K = 62.3 miles)
First Century (100 Miles)
I took 6 months to work through them. So fun first, goals second.
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Old 01-28-13, 07:58 PM
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chrisdorman
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Originally Posted by Lanceoldstrong View Post
Welcome to the tribe!
ericm979 is right about fun. Fun First then goals.

My goals early on were:

First 5 miler
First 10 miler
First 20 miler
First 30 miler
First 1/2 Century (50 Miler)
First Metric (100K = 62.3 miles)
First Century (100 Miles)
I took 6 months to work through them. So fun first, goals second.
Awesome, thanks!

On my first ride today I found my thighs really fatigued and I had to stop pedaling throughout my ride to rest my legs. Are there good workouts I can do to help strengthen those muscles? I assume I will be sore for the first few weeks until I am in better shape.
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Old 01-28-13, 08:00 PM
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Lanceoldstrong
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Originally Posted by chrisdorman View Post
Awesome, thanks!

On my first ride today I found my thighs really fatigued and I had to stop pedaling throughout my ride to rest my legs. Are there good workouts I can do to help strengthen those muscles? I assume I will be sore for the first few weeks until I am in better shape.
Do some research into Spinning vs. Mashing. Spinning in lower gears will help
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Old 01-28-13, 09:06 PM
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General rule is no more than a 10% increase in distance per week, both on any ride, and total for the week. Some variation in this, more variation between individual rides than of the weekly total. The idea is to try to force the beginning rider to take it easy. Easy to overdo it early on. Most important thing is that it be fun. As you go on, your idea of what "fun" is may change.

10% interest compounded weekly adds up quickly.

It's a good idea to think about some local route which might involve hills and see if you can bite off bits of it. It can take a while just to be able to climb one hill all the way up.

Right now, cycling is the best exercise you can do for cycling.
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Old 01-29-13, 11:12 AM
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ks1g
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+1. The best training to ride is to ride. OK to take a rest day, or at least a really easy ride day (if you don't feel embarassed you're so slow, it isn't easy enough) when your body tells you that you need one. Just don't use it as an excuse - sometimes I just want to get out there day after day. Commuting is a good way to build miles & time in saddle if you situation enables it.

Longer term, what "lance" did. Set goals, could be a local charity ride or century (they usually have shorter distances, too), then you have that as a motivator. Or just ride lots and remember to have fun doing it. If logging weekly/monthly miles, or tracking time to ride a particular hill or road/trail segment works as a motivator, do that. Welcome to the community! Good luck!
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Old 01-30-13, 07:25 PM
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All great advice! When I started it was just to have fun and use as a fill in from other ecsersize and before I new it it was my mane form of acsersize and I can't get enough.

Keep with it and it will come.
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Old 01-30-13, 09:32 PM
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Originally Posted by chrisdorman View Post

On my first ride today I found my thighs really fatigued and I had to stop pedaling throughout my ride to rest my legs. Are there good workouts I can do to help strengthen those muscles?
Yep: ride. If you have bad knees or are really out of shape like I was when I came back to cycling at age 40, consider a couple days of lifting weights in the gym. It's good for general strength and condition, and in my case, helped my knees. I could not ride every day anyhow back then. The point about spinning the pedals, not mashing, is a good one.

Originally Posted by chrisdorman View Post
I assume I will be sore for the first few weeks until I am in better shape.
What bothered me the most when (re)starting cycling is my hands and butt. I raced in my late 20s then quit for motorcycle racing, then stopped that and got out of shape. When I started again I knew all about bike fitting and riding from before but I still went through an uncomfortable period of a few weeks getting my hands and butt used to riding again.

I did something like Lance's progression, adding the Markleeville Death Ride and the Everest Challenge stage race and going back to racing.
I did not intend to do that. But after a while of just riding around, setting goals seemed like it would be fun. And it has been so far.
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Old 02-01-13, 08:33 AM
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Originally Posted by chrisdorman View Post
On my first ride today I found my thighs really fatigued and I had to stop pedaling throughout my ride to rest my legs.
Check your seat height. If the seat is way too low your thighs will feel it. There are plenty of articles out there on how to do it: http://www.bikeradar.com/fitness/art...t-right-14608/

As someone else said, if that's not the issue you need to try getting your cadence around the 90rpm mark. Spinning is a lot easier on the muscles.
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Old 03-15-13, 02:43 PM
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when your legs recover, continue some running. cycling is a good compliment to running
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