BICYCLES

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by Igor Ound, Aug 15, 2015.

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  1. Igor Ound

    Igor Ound F1 Veteran

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  2. 4th_gear

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    Nice TT bike, big one! But it's not a fixie and it's got non-Italian components. IMO, all CF Campy would look and work nicer on the road.

    Do you have access to an oval?
     
  3. Igor Ound

    Igor Ound F1 Veteran

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    Pls don't call them fixies! At least not when they're proper track bikes. :) You mean it would look better like this? http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-159DrEc6jx0/U9IDSMgLl6I/AAAAAAAAUQ4/X68elzlqSBI/s1600/10550869_10152593552608454_6142647262278092982_n.jpg

    I agree in that case but Campagnolo has lost a bit of ground regarding top notch components at good prices, as has Bianchi, which is not even really Italian anymore. Still both look great.
    I could use London's Olympic park's velodrome if I wanted but not my thing for now. Prefer to train in parks on a track bike with front brake and aero bars and after having put on weight in the last few months I'm really slow atm. If the road is flat fixed gears are usually faster than proper TT bikes, though, as they can be more aerodynamic, have fewer components and friction and weigh less.
    Right now I'm deciding on setting up the bike in a UCI legal spec or not to give a damn about it.
    Main difference being the saddle setback which is much more comfortable as forward as possible and slightly tilted downwards, although not UCI legal. But whatever.
     
  4. 4th_gear

    4th_gear F1 Rookie
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    Sorry, I couldn't resist the poke. ;)

    That's an improvement but then it reminds me more of a "concept vehicle" than a practical or "comfortable" "production model". So perhaps something more in between?

    Yes, Campy gear can be expensive but they have very good 2nd, 3rd tier stuff at very competitive prices. Dura Ace is not cheap. Good CF frames are also almost all made in Taiwan these days but we should consider design and spirit. Shimano is mainly a marketing conglomerate. They buy their way into equipping all the off-the-rack bikes, will do that to own the whole market and more. There will come a point when they won't care about bikes like Bianchi TT bikes or even the Tour, because Shimano is a global enterprise with fingers in broader business interests. Whereas Campagnolo is all and only about cycling. I can afford it so I help Campy in a small way to stay in the market.

    IMO, the Dura Ace gear on the Bianchi is quite unsightly, does not match anything, has no artistic merit. :)

    I rode a cheap fixed wheel trainer on the road when I was in college. The problem with that, aside from the dodgy braking part, was the constant disruption to my cadence. I had to constantly slow, speed up and stop a lot. I also had to ride a smaller gear to make it usable and safe so it was a bit like a mule's exercise.. plodding, at times cantankerous, at times frightening. It did help me get used to non-stop cranking and made me smoother but I would have opted for an oval if we had one.

    Here's a very useful tip if you want to shed pounds quickly. Do enough miles to get reasonably fit and then do regular intervals on the bike, 1-hour sessions on an oval would work very well. Your body sheds weight like crazy if you do intervals regularly but DO NOT PERFORM intervals on a fixed wheel, on public roads.

    The forward position suits such a bike but is very aggressive and awful for the inevitable hill on the road (park?). Unless you have a flat, all left hand turn course (UK) without "traffic" issues, you might be very disappointed. My old fixed wheel trainer was a converted U08 complete with fenders. The idea was not to go the fastest but to get used to spinning and riding smooth. If you want to go fast (in a safe way) you must have a controlled course and the oval is the best way.

    Otherwise I assume you are doing it for health and fitness so I think you should ride whatever is comfortable for the course and style of riding you intend. If you still want to ride fixed on the road, an old road frame with home-brew fixed gears would look and be way cooler than the latest TT frame and high end stuff.

    You would "wear your bike" rather than have it wear you. ;)
     
  5. Igor Ound

    Igor Ound F1 Veteran

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    I'd like to do TT's and duathlon on the fixed bike so training already pretty hard (hard enough to make my stomach go upside down) and pretty fast. No matter lack of rear brake, no ability to stop pedalling and if it wasn't enough, double strap toe clips. Don't use clipless as to simulate a duathlon I just quickly lock the bike and continue running. Also pretty serious gear here, no vintage steel. All carbon and aluminium parts I assemble myself. Only steel on my bike is probably spokes, cartridge bearings, few bolts and chain. :)
     
  6. 4th_gear

    4th_gear F1 Rookie
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    I compliment you on your health goals.

    Duathlons are difficult for pure cyclists though, as the muscles employed in running and cycling are mutually incompatible. The same goes for swimming with regard to these 2 sports. I have a great deal of respect for such athletes but I have not tried to combine competitive running with cycling.

    If you get serious with TTs, you might want to focus on it instead. Running would prove at least partially counterproductive to your cycling interests. You can still do it recreationally but when done closely together, the two disciplines are like cats and dogs when you go from one directly to the other in an event and are in conflict with regards to muscle development.
     
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  8. darth550

    darth550 Five Time F1 World Champ
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    #7 darth550, Aug 15, 2015
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    I was offered this bike for $1200 and there's room. The thing weighs nothing.

    Keep in mind, I'm 5'11, 210 and plan to ride it on the bike path. I have a Trek hybrid now.

    Thoughts?
    IMG_1981[1].jpg
    IMG_1982[1].jpg
    IMG_1985[1].jpg
    IMG_1986[1].jpg
     
  9. Igor Ound

    Igor Ound F1 Veteran

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    That's why a more forward saddle position is preferred in triathlons and duathlons. To work a more similar combination of muscles to running, and to make transitions smoother. Only problem is that this position produces less power and is then better with lower gears.
    Btw I decided not to give a damn about UCI legal position mainly because in UK TTs often don't care about it and second but no less important, because my manhood suffers too much with a max 3 degrees forward saddle tilt ;)
     
  10. Igor Ound

    Igor Ound F1 Veteran

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    Looks good and pretty sure you could get some good money back on ebay if you split it. Have a look at how much a Dura ace from that era, the frame and wheels are going for and you'll have a better idea imo, always after making sure the frame is sound.
     
  11. 4th_gear

    4th_gear F1 Rookie
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    Litespeed has a good reputation for building very nice recreational bikes as well as top end racing models. The one you have here appears to be a high end metal (possibly titanium) + (Easton) CF forks racing bike, a few years old judging by the older high end components on it. They are still good high end components albeit of an earlier design. Very nice light wheels. The gearing is for racing, on flatter courses so change the cassette if you intend to climb hills on your rides. Tires may be old and require replacement.

    I'd say if the bike fits you and you're in the market for a really nice older bike for a bargain... just compare other similar offers and make sure there's no damage from spills or crashes. All the better if you can do a test ride.
     
  12. 4th_gear

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    The forward position is also more aerodynamic but a strong cyclist's bigger thigh and calf muscles won't benefit running. The position also changes the balance of weight placed on the bike, putting more weight on your hands and shoulders and less on your manhood... erm, butt.

    I had to look up the relevant UCI regulations about your saddle. :) Well, even if the officials complain at the event, you can always adjust the saddle to keep them happy and you'll be OK.

    Your manhood was probably "the clincher". :) What saddle are you on by the way? I haven't ride my TT bike enough to be sure but I've got an ISM Adamo Podium on mine and it's quite comfy so far.
     
  13. Igor Ound

    Igor Ound F1 Veteran

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    I have a regular racing saddle, pretty light but nothing special. Don't really want an Adamo for now, mainly for the looks and also cause it's really good only for TTs. The Adamo has also been designed to allow a forward position within the UCI limits of the tip of the saddle not having to go over the vertical line passing through the centre of the BB. I'd rather have a regular saddle and slam it all the way forward without taking care of the rules. I am thinking of changing mine, though, probably for a Fizik one. Just back from a ride and my bum is in agony.
     
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  15. Hocakes

    Hocakes Karting

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    Judging from the size of the head tube that is a very small frame & might be too short for you at 5'11".

     
  16. 4th_gear

    4th_gear F1 Rookie
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    Sorry about your agony. Your bum should recover to "fight" another day. :)

    The shorter split nose of the Podium removes the pressure point on my... whatever. If you use a regular road saddle and move it forward while bending your upper body over even more than on your road bike, your "thing" ends up compressed against the tip of the saddle. The old guys keep telling me some of the pros have ended up with permanent "bodily issues". :eek:

    The Podium is designed for longer TT rides for riders with flexible bodies, a characteristic which also tends to fit the Fizik designs. However, I have a wider set of "sit bones" and need a 155 mm width seat. Fizik doesn't make those at all while ISM and Specialized do. IMO, ISM and Specialized make the most sensible saddles on the market. My road saddles are the Romin Pro and Romin EVO Pro.
     
  17. 4th_gear

    4th_gear F1 Rookie
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    +1 Make sure the thing fits!
     
  18. TRScotty

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    One of the guys on our weekly rides has one of these.
    Very cool bike, to say the least.

    I agree about the fit.
    If it doesn't fit, don't waste your time or money.
     
  19. darth550

    darth550 Five Time F1 World Champ
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    I'm going to go back and check it out tomorrow. Don't have shoes to ride it though.
     
  20. Igor Ound

    Igor Ound F1 Veteran

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    You don't need proper shoes to understand if that's your right size. :)

    Btw if you intend on using the bike with aerobars a smaller size frame is often faster and more comfortable. Mine is 3 sizes smaller than the recommended one for my height.
     
  21. darth550

    darth550 Five Time F1 World Champ
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    I get that. I was just rushed when I saw it and won't be tomorrow. I'll have more time to see.
     
  22. darth550

    darth550 Five Time F1 World Champ
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    #20 darth550, Aug 17, 2015
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    BYW, this is on there too.
    IMG_1988.jpg
     
  23. Sandy Eggo

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    Not a big deal, I rode my bike around for 10 miles with tennis shoes on pedals like that. It feels a little weird at first but totally fine for a test ride.

    At 210 pounds, I'd recommend you get the exact specs on those wheels. Reason being is that they look light as a feather and with a low spoke count - might not be the sort that anyone over 180 pounds ought to be depending on.
     
  24. Igor Ound

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    Those Shimano wheels are pretty though. I'd be more worried about the carbon fork but as long as it has no cracks it should be fine. Same for the frame, as long as it's straight. Looks like a 54 top to me, though, which is probably too small for regular use
     
  25. darth550

    darth550 Five Time F1 World Champ
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    I should be able to stand over the frame and have about an inch clearance, no?
     
  26. Igor Ound

    Igor Ound F1 Veteran

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    It's not that easy. A quick way to measure it is with your arm. Your forearm an fist closed should be able to get between the saddle's tip and the stem. With your arm open you should be able to touch the bars. Then with your armpit over the saddle you should be able to just about reach the bolt at the centre of the crankset. Bring a tape measure though and try to understand what exact size the frame is so that you can see its geometry online. Most common measure is from the bolt at the centre of the crankset to the seat collar to determine how long the seat tube is.
     
  27. Hocakes

    Hocakes Karting

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    There is a lot more to it than that. If you have a short torso & the top tube is long, you will be stretched out & vice versa. All bikes are comfortable for 2 min in a parking lot. Ride 30-40 mi then get off & you will know (for better or worse) if it fits right. The trick is to not have a $3K or more torture device. And this is why a pro fitting & flexibility measurement is key.

    http://www.bicycling.com/maintenance/bike-fit/if-bike-fits-buy-it-0
    http://www.bicycling.com/repair-maintenance/bike-fit/if-fitter-fits
    http://www.wobblenaught.com/

    Some high end manufacturers (Cyfac, Seven) have their own fit systems too

     
  28. 4th_gear

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    I find bike-fitting an iterative process. It can take time to get it perfect but you do have to start from having the correct frame size. Having a safe stand-over height is important.

    Some parts on a bike are meant to be individually sized... like the stem (length and angle). You may also do better with different depth (shallow or deep) for handlebars. Don't be reluctant to ditch the wrong minor component(s) if you buy a used bike. Use a different saddle if it's not comfortable. You may benefit from being fitted for a proper saddle.

    If you are experienced you can also tell how well the bike fits a rider just by looking at the riding position of the person on the bike. I find videotaping the rider on the bike to be very useful. Photographs would work well too. Even with your own bike it can be beneficial to look at a photo or video of yourself on the bike and spot less noticeable issues otherwise missed.

    If all else fails, you can walk yourself through some on-line bike-fitting websites and match the geometry of the used bike to a similar bike that the online system fits you for, and verify if the used frame is the right size for you. One website that has a good system is WrenchScience.com. They sell the latest frameset and bikes as well as the odd older framesets at discount.

    Here is the webpage to their listing for a top-of-the-line Litespeed titanium racing model from the same maker of the bike that you are interested in. Less expensive Litespeed models are shown below. Their fitting system is accessed by clicking the 5th tab to the right from the "bikes" tab.

    I haven't bought from Wrench Science yet because of the high USD->CAD exchange rate, shipping hassles and the fact that many of their special discounts are only good if you live in the US. But their prices are attractive and you can pretty well do an online configuration for a bike that you are interested in with components you prefer... and their bike fitting system is also very handy. You can also walk through the process on the phone with their friendly bike fitters.
     
  29. darth550

    darth550 Five Time F1 World Champ
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    #27 darth550, Aug 18, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2015
    It's a 55 cm and I have a long-ish torso and short legs. The first measurement with the fist was fine. The second, I would have to lover the seat or be hunched way over from what in used to. Lastly, ith my fingertip stretched it barely reaches the crank bolt but I can move the seat for that too, no?

    Is moving the seat to make those work the right way?
     
  30. Igor Ound

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    Looked smaller than 55 from the pics, guess it's the geometry. And yes if you need to lower the seat it's all good. As long as you don't need to raise it over the recommended height. Actually for your height a 55 or 56 is usually the seat tube recommended length, so size is good. Up to you to check the components' state and overall price. Price is not out of this world anyway but I would personally haggle a little bit as it's likely over ten years old a bike. I love the Dura Ace groupset and wheels though. You might get good money out of those alone one day :)
     
  31. darth550

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    #29 darth550, Aug 18, 2015
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    He was pretty firm at $1200 but I could probably get it for closer to 11. He also said he has a Felt Z3 coming in that's only 3-4 years old for about the same $$$.

    I took some more pics....
    IMG_2025.jpg
    IMG_2026.jpg
    IMG_2027.jpg
    IMG_2029.jpg
    IMG_2028.jpg
     
  32. Igor Ound

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    The Felt would probably be easier to find parts for and lower maintenance but I quite like this one. I would personally reverse the seat clamp to make the saddle go as forward as possible, change the saddle itself, remove all the yellow stickers, change the bars for some aero ones and use the bike as a TT/Tri machine
     
  33. tjacoby

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    if you plan on riding more than an hour or so a day, go pay for a professional fitting from a pro! stem, bar height, bar width, seat height, seat setback, crank length, and cleat positioning all matter 100x more than the bike and it's price. after fit, getting the right gear to make riding comfortable matters more than the bike. Bike fit is a science and an art - and buying the bike first for looks and price is totally backwards.
     
  34. Igor Ound

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    That's good advice but understanding it and doing it yourself is half the fun for me
     
  35. Ricambi America

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    Trek Madone 5.2 just ordered. :) I think it is a 2009 model.

    Hopefully it'll be here before the weekend, and I'll have a chance to get acclimated on a nice country ride.

    I simply could not take the taunting of my Runtastic app and the unacceptable ride-times each day. This darn bike better knock 2:00 off my ride, or I'll be pretty peeved.
     
  36. 4th_gear

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    The Madones are great bikes with well-established performance records but how much the Madone 5.2 will improve your time would depend on the equipment that it's replacing and where you are doing your rides. How long are your rides anyway?
     
  37. Ricambi America

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    #35 Ricambi America, Aug 25, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2015
    Michael -

    I'm replacing a 2011 Specialized Hardrock MTB with 26x2 full knobbies. Weighs in around 29#. On my downhill stretches, I spin out the pedals for lack of gearing. Front suspension has about 1.5" (or more?) of movement, and preload is fully set. The rolling resistance is quite substantial. The aero is non-existent, as I'm in a full upright position all the time. It is basically this bike, but with v-brakes: http://surbitoncycles.com/mountain/hardrock/L_2011_HARDROCK_DISC_BLK_PUNK.jpg

    In other words, I'm on an entirely incorrect bike for my current mission!

    My commute is about 7 miles each way to/from the Ricambi America office. I ride at 0520 in the morning, at 1645 in the afternoon on "small town" streets. On the weekends, I ride about a 15-20 mile loop, just for fun, in the countryside.

    I'm 5'9", 147#, and have chronicled my times/averages/pace/HRM in the 'FC weight loss' thread here on Fchat, so with reams of very accurate data on my Hardrock performance, I think I can get a very good comparison to the Trek. If I had a better way to share my Runtastic data, I'd do it...

    For the coin I've dropped (its a lot, to me), this better be a religious awakening.
     
  38. 4th_gear

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    LOL, you'll think you died and went to Tour de France heaven! Just make sure you put enough air in the tires.

    Current thinking is to put 100-105 psi in the rear and 80 psi in the front for your weight. This will make for a more compliant ride without sacrificing speed or tire wear.
     
  39. Ricambi America

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    Bike arrived. Tried to ride around the Ricambi neighborhood. Scared. It is like riding on a rock, hunched over, with my feet nailed down.

    God willing, I'll try to make it home on the thing today -- especially since I pulled the pedals from my old bike for this new one.
     
  40. Igor Ound

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    Ah ha! :D Don't worry, as someone said "it's like learning to ride a bike" ;)

    You should try my setup. Fixed cog, front brake only, pedals getting in the way of the front wheel when turning, double strap toe clips and aerobars. Each one of those elements might be enough to make you crash
     
  41. 4th_gear

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    Looks like you've never ridden clipless pedals before. I should have noticed you wrote you "...spin out the pedals for lack of gearing..." on your 2011 Specialized Hardrock MTB. It's just hard for me to believe anyone could put up with spinning out of their pedals. :)

    Take my advice, do not try to ride the bike on the road until you are confident that you can stop and dismount efficiently. I have been riding these bikes for longer than 40 years. If you have any doubts, just walk it home and practise at home before you try it again. You can get injured or worse and your new bike will sustain unnecessary damage that you will regret.

    Clipless pedals are more difficult to get accustomed to but they are better than the older toeclip/toestrap pedals because they hold your feet more accurately, permit no unwanted movements, are lighter and provide better clearance should you want to pedal through some corners.

    You need to first practise getting in and out of the clipless pedals while stationary. Here's what I suggest.
    Place your bike in the middle of a wide doorway, say at least 30", preferably 36" wide. Then straddle your bike with your cycling shoes on, place one hand on the door frame and the other hand on the handlebar to steady yourself while you mount the saddle.

    Using backpedal motions to move the pedals into position, mount each shoe onto its clipless pedal and then practise unclipping and reclipping. Some clipless pedals may require you to adjust the spring tension on your clip to get them working properly. I suggest you start with the lowest spring tension.

    Usually, to clip in you turn the pedal to its upright position and press down. Most clipless only work like this, only on one side of the pedal. However, I use Speedplay pedals and they will clip in on either side on the pedal so you never have to play with the pedal before you push down.

    To unclip, push down on your heel and make a determined swiveling motion to push your heel outwards. Some pedals also work well if you push your heel inward but that's less intuitive and it's arguably better to heel outwards because it also gets your foot ready to be planted on the road surface.​
    If you practise like this inside a doorway you should be safe from falling. Just stay calm and do the motions in a precise and determined manner. Do not put up with sloppy motions, the clipping in and unclipping motions need to be precise and positive. Have someone nearby to help if you feel unsure. You'll appreciate using clipless pedals. They are the best way to get the most power out of your legs. If you are serious about cycling you'll never be satisfied until you have the most efficient setup for your pedaling.

    IMO, Speedplay makes the best road pedals. They are used on the top pro circuits as well as by recreational cyclists.
     
  42. Ricambi America

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    ^ I have been using clipless pedals on the MTB for about 5 weeks. I'm used to the process, but more details to follow. I do want to talk pedals. Mine are Shimano SPD (these: Amazon.com : Shimano PD-M324 Clipless/Clip Pedals : Bike Pedals : Sports & Outdoors)


    Gotta run for dinner... but let me post four comments:

    1) H-O-L-Y F-4-C-K-$-G COW !!! My ride home was an average of 18.7 mph, whereas on the MTB I barely broke 14.5. Mind you, I was absolutely babying the new bike, fearful of every gear change and dismount. This thing literally hauls the mail. In-frikkin-sane.

    2) Stiff as a board. My phone flew out of its compression mount when I hit a bump. On the MTP with shocks, the ride was far smoother. Obviously, there's a learning curve here! Love the shifter/brake combo deal. I couldn't get the hang of it when riding upright, but down in the drops it was quite natural.

    3) Darth -- get a road bike. Mother of God.

    4) The MTB, with pedals and my tool bag weighs 33#. The Trek, equally loaded weighs 24#. Doesn't seem like a lot, but the gearing, aero, and rolling resistance are literally the difference between a Jeep and a 458 Speciale.

    So much fun. I absolutely cannot wait to ride tomorrow, and again this weekend!!
     
  43. 4th_gear

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    And here I was, wondering if you were still "nailed" to your new bike... belly up by the side of the road with your legs, wheels still spinning in the air. :D

    Enjoy!
     
  44. Ricambi America

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    #42 Ricambi America, Aug 28, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
    I'll post more later. I have to get my son to school and have a morning meeting. In a nutshell, the Trek Madone is so scary fast -- I'm stunned. SO. MUCH. FUN.
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  45. 4th_gear

    4th_gear F1 Rookie
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    Thanks for posting your interesting stats. I had also looked at your other thread on heart rate monitor and discussion.

    Just a brief comment. I see you ride your bike like the way you play hockey, with frequent multiple bursts of high intensity followed by less frequent but more sustained periods of lower activity. This is not surprising given that you are riding on the road and have to contend with traffic and lights. However, this pattern of activity is more akin to the shorter track cycling events than road cycling where cyclist have 60 to 150 mile rides or races to pace out their efforts. OTOH, the longest track events (i.e. omnium points race) only last 40 km (~25 miles). Track events also tend to test a rider's sprinting or short timetrialing ability more than their endurance capacity.

    I think you are obviously quite fit. However, your training seems to stress sprinting more than endurance. If you are interested in road cycling, you will have to ride much longer distances and learn to pace yourself better and also develop somewhat different muscles, especially if you start encountering long or very steep hills. In cycling, well-developed riders will always fall into several very distinct types who each have different strengths that they apply to courses that may or may not favour them. Cycling will likely help your hockey training more than hockey training will help your cycling; because cycling requires more sustained efforts, with no possibility of stopping during the event. So you will have to decide whether hockey or cycling is your primary sport interest and at least skew your training accordingly.

    BTW, don't stop riding your MTB. ;)
     
  46. Ricambi America

    Ricambi America F1 World Champ
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    #44 Ricambi America, Aug 28, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
    Michael -

    Great insight! My longest ride on the MTB was about 22 miles. (see below). I now realize just what a lug of metal that thing is for road biking. I'm going to do the same route again this weekend and see how it goes on the new bike. I agree, I tend to push really hard then "slack off" in my riding. In hockey, that's just the flow of the game -- in cycling, your observation is very valid. With cars, traffic lights, and a lot street changes, it would be hard to keep a consistent pace.

    In hockey, I really don't get exhausted like I did a few years ago. Lots and lots of training and diet have solved that. I simply get off the ice because my linemates are forcing me to shift. Damn bunch of old fatties! This week for example, after an hour of pickup hockey I absolutely could have gone another 45 minutes without feeling fatigued.

    So, for the ride this weekend, if I shoot for 30 miles, what kind of dips in pace are reasonable? Am I trying to keep my min/average speed and max/average speed (measured in 1 mile increments) within a certain range? As a newbie, remember I'm still missing some critical shifts as I figure out these goofy levers.

    p.s. No way am I selling the MTB. :)
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  47. Ricambi America

    Ricambi America F1 World Champ
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    #45 Ricambi America, Aug 29, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
    I did it. 34 miles on my new (to me) Trek Madone road bike. I'm ashamed that I stopped for a rest once -- and barely mustered the strength to get back on -- but I am proud that I finished the route.

    The erratic pace is very frustrating. 4th_gear, you've gotten into my brain now, and I see the value in maintaining pace, but it'll take a crap-ton of work to figure it out.

    FWIW, I am such a stupid moron, I forgot to bring any water at all.. next time, I'll absolutely have a bottle and (hopefully) some BCAA with me too.
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  48. 4th_gear

    4th_gear F1 Rookie
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    Daniel, it's good to see your enthusiasm for cycling and training in general. Distance work on a bike is mostly done to achieve one specific purpose, namely endurance. You would set a certain distance target and then work up to that over several weeks and perhaps even months, if the target is challenging. Generally speaking, if you can comfortably complete a certain distance and have something left in the tank at the end, you should "do OK" in an open or novice category race double that distance.

    Gradual increases in a particular kind of stress, coupled with a proper amount of recovery allows you to build "strength" for that specific activity you are training for. So take care how fast you increase your training. You must allow for full recovery which I had already touched on with regard to monitoring long term heartrate patterns.

    If you train for endurance you must also carry water and drink regularly; starting to drink even before you feel the need to take the first sip. If the weather is extremely hot and you tend to sweat a lot, you should also consider electrolyte replacement. Failure to maintain electrolyte balance can lead to sudden cramping and can if severe, end an athlete's career or even be life-threatening. Also carry food and start feeding early if the rides are "very long".

    I see a great deal of speed and heartrate variations in your training data. Normally when you train for distance, both metrics should be fairly constant or only trend one way or another over the session if you are riding under the even conditions. You shouldn't be "sprinting" all the time unless you are doing natural intervals along your distance ride. So I think you need to understand 2 things before you go out next time: 1) how to warm up; and 2) how to set and maintain a proper pace.

    Top cyclists need about 20-30 minutes to fully warm up. You must only ride at most at 60-70% until you are warmed up. If you go too hard too early, you will carry around a lot of lactic acid for the rest of your distance training session. If conditions are on the cool side, carefully stretch your muscles before starting your warm-up.

    You need to pay attention to your cadence. Proper cadence is well over 90, and when racing preferably between 95 to 100. Sometimes up to 104 when you're duking it out over a measured distance. There are always different phases, conditions, in a race. You cannot ride well until you understand and ride proper cadences for the conditions. Selecting cadence takes account the terrain as well as a particular rider's strengths and weaknesses; and to know all that takes a lot of time and observation if you do not have a coach.

    Good advice for you at this point is to join a decent local club that offers various fitness groups (speed) of riders. Start at one level below what you feel competent to stay with. This will allow you to learn proper technique instead of just going like a madman to stay with or beat the other people in your group. You want to learn discipline at this point, not prove how fit you are so at this point don't challenge other riders unless they invite you to try. Stay humble and learn from the mature, experienced riders and especially from qualified coaches; they have seen a lot, been there and know stuff. You'll be there to learn and to enjoy their company. :)

    P.S. That's one cool "bike shuttle" you have there in the background. ;)
     
  49. TRScotty

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    So Daniel, what's your impression of the Madone now that you've been able to put some more miles on her?

    I am actively trying to decide what I want to upgrade to now.
    I know I want Ultegra or Dura-Ace mechanical group, but am having trouble choosing a model.

    Current options are:

    Trek Domane or Madone
    Specialized Tarmac
    Parlee Altum
    Giant TCR SL
     
  50. tjacoby

    tjacoby F1 Rookie

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    Daniel - don't sweat the training details so much as go have fun and explore life with your bike, and don't start off so hard! Intervals are going to get you faster than long steady rides, unless you've got 20 hours a week to train.

    TR: I'm a big fan of the Domane for most riders, it is noticeably smoother than the Madone. And if it's good enough for Cancellara, it's good enough for any of us. Picking the frame is more about picking the bike shop you want to work on it - outside of fit/geometry of the different bikes, the wheels/gruppo/etc makes a lot more difference to your ride. It's amazing the compliance in a Carbon frame these days. Trek, Specialized, and Giant are the big three.

    As much as I love the Dura-Ace stuff, I can't stand paying the extra $$'s to replace it over the Ultegra every time I wear something out. I'm a full Ultegra setup now (Di2) despite having owned and raced Dura-Ace a few times. I ride through the PNW winters, which can be brutal on gear.

     
  51. Ricambi America

    Ricambi America F1 World Champ
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    Sorry I didn't reply sooner ---- I have been too busy riding the Madone!!

    I really enjoy it, despite an extremely stiff ride compared to what I was riding previously (and perhaps what I expected or simply didn't understand about carbon bikes). Nonetheless, it is absolutely awesome.

    I took it to the LBS to have a shifter cable replaced that had frayed, and asked them to tune the bike a bit for better shifting. Guess what? I don't think they did a very good job, and with about 2 hours of my own time and some careful learning, I've got it shifting like butter. I'm so new to the road bike world that I didn't fully understand the idea of "trimming", so incorrectly expected all gears to sound smooth immediately upon engagement. Now that I know how to trim the front derailleur, it all makes sense. duh.

    I have put about 250 miles on it so far, including my first ever race this weekend! The race had a 65 mile, 45 mile, and 25 mile option. As a newbie, I chose the 25 mile option. The 45 and 25 started at the same time, and for at least the first 15 miles I was in the lead pack of 10 riders. No doubter. Then... disaster struck!!

    Our lead pack was arriving at waypoints before the marshalls (and highway patrol) established themselves and could direct the cyclists. As a newbie, I missed the painted directions on the pavement and followed the wrong pack (the 45 mile group) for an unnecessary 3 miles. When I realized the error, I needed to backtrack to the waypoint and rejoin my particular route (the 25 mile group). It dumped me somewhere around the back three-quarters of the racers, where my self-esteem was crushed and I just coasted the remainder. Without question, if I had made my proper turn, I would have finished quite strongly. I'm confident my endurance and conditioning are moving in the right direction -- but my cycling experience fits into something smaller than a Presta valve tip!

    Here's the thing: I had a great time, and would do it again in a second. After the race, some of the other cyclists invited me on a 50-miler this coming weekend, which I'm going to try. It's just a casual ride, which they described as 14-16/mph with a few stops along the way. Fingers crossed.

    Back to the Madone... its crazy light. I cannot imagine what a brand new bike might weigh. How could it be even lighter? Perhaps the advantage is in the gearing or something. I did notice some of the super cool bikes at the race had wheels with hardly any spokes. Lightweight wheels I suppose make a difference. My bike has Vuelta Zerolite wheels.

    I'll probably need to upgrade to brighter lights for my morning commute, as the days grow shorter. I'm also wondering if a Garmin unit would be better for me than my Android -- but I gotta be honest, spending *more* money doesn't really appeal to me.
     
  52. Ricambi America

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    #50 Ricambi America, Sep 14, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2015
    Well, 5776 is off to a charming start.

    @ 5:26am I hit some kind of pothole and blew BOTH the front an rear tires on my morning commute. I only carry one spare tube, so repair was useless. Uber doesn't have cars with bike racks. The city bus doesn't go near my route.

    2.5 miles later, carrying my Madone on my shoulder, I'm no longer convinced that its feather-light! I hope my cleats are not destroyed. My spirit most certainly is. :(
     

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