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Cycling Thread - pleasure peddlers to serious cyclists sign in here!

(995 Posts)
Thistledew Sat 13-Aug-11 16:41:39

Hi All

I thought I would start a cycling thread. It would be great if we could make it all inclusive, so whether you currently just enjoy bike rides but are interested in taking it further, or already train seriously, please post what you are up to and what your aims are. By sharing knowledge and experiences, hopefully we can spur each other on.

If you want to, please post a quick biog of how long you have been cycling, how much you currently cycle, and what your goals are.

And for those who wish to engage in a bit of bike porn, please feel free to post what sort of bike you ride!

Happy peddling!

IndridCold Sun 21-Aug-11 18:09:47

Another keen cyclist here too - doing and watching (am enjoying La Vuelta on ITV4 at the moment!)

I cycled regularly until my mid 20s when I started working in London; in those days it was not nearly so cycle friendly so I got out of the habit.

I started again about 3 years ago so with the intention of getting fitter and healthier, as well as being able to take DS out cycling too. It didn't take long for DH to join in too, so as not to feel left out!

I ride a Specialized Tricross Sport which is a cyclocross bike, suitable for the fairly mixed terrain here in Cornwall. I also rescued an old Peugeot steel framed road bike which I am doing up as a project and to learn more about the technical side of bikes.

My biggest problem here in Cornwall is the hills. We live at the bottom of the Tamar Valley so the first thing I face going out on the bike is massive climb, which makes popping out to the shops impossible (at the moment, anyway). I am working on it though, and am determined to do it eventually.

As for gear, I also love Pearl Izumi stuff. I would recommend keeping an eye on Chain Reaction Cycles website as I have got some spectacular bargains there in the past - they have a very good women-specific section.

Will be keeping an eye on this thread, I've often thought I can't be the only Bike fiend on MN!

nevergoogle Sun 21-Aug-11 21:18:36

hi indrid, i am doing the breeze training on 10th september in plymouth. it's free if you fancy signing up too.

Thistledew Sun 21-Aug-11 22:14:33

I managed to improve my cycle route from work today. I had to go in today and was determined not to lose my Sunday cycle. When I commuted on the bike on Wednesday I couldn't find the entrance to an underpass under a particularly awkward junction, buy managed to pick it up today about a 1/4 of a mile before the junction!

I also enjoyed watching the London Prepares BMX event yesterday. It looked great fun and I wouldn't mind giving it a go.

Is anyone else doing the Richmond to Windsor ride in two weeks time?

upahill Sun 21-Aug-11 22:16:27

When I did my Breeze training it poured down all day!!!

nevergoogle Sun 21-Aug-11 22:18:48

oh no, please no rain.

Thistledew Mon 22-Aug-11 14:43:17

Does anyone know how Gore and Pearl Izumi come up size-wise? I need to get another pair of 3/4 leggings, and have seen some on Amazon at a good price, but I haven't ever tried them on, so am not sure what size would be best.

I am a large size 10 (am aiming to be a bit more comfortably size 10 grin) but size 12 is usually too big. I am also quite tall - 5"9.

Any opinions on whether Gore in a size 38 or Pearl Izumi in a small would be about right?

I have a pair of Altura 3/4 leggings in medium, which fit perfectly, if that helps.

SummerLightning Mon 22-Aug-11 22:02:23

thistledew I'm a 10-12 and I take a medium Pearl Izumi, not sure about Gore but I think medium too. I don't like things too tight though.

BikeRunSki Mon 22-Aug-11 22:04:19

Gore Sizes come up v small.

sevenoften Mon 22-Aug-11 22:20:46

Another cyclist here - not very good at long distances, but I do like it. Took ds11 out for our first ever proper ride - ie one that went a route I would normally do, not adapted for kids. 20Km and 4 very large hills, and he did really well. He's not very sporty but this seems to work for him.

We have done some family cycle touring, and I find blogs like this are useful for getting good ideas about where to go and how to do it.

sevenoften Mon 22-Aug-11 22:24:06

Or this is another one.

Thistledew Tue 23-Aug-11 10:44:36

Thanks. I have ordered the Gore leggings in a 12, as for some reason they were half the price of the size 10 on Amazon.

cumbria81 Tue 23-Aug-11 11:38:16

Oh can I join?

I am somewhere between a pleasure peddler and serious cyclist. I ride every single day and am very cross if I don't . I have four bikes at the moment (racing bike, touring bike, mountain bike and fixie) but realise this is ridiculous.

I'm doing the Breeze training later in the month, any advice?

cumbria81 Tue 23-Aug-11 11:40:43

Oh and to the poster who lives in a hilly place - me too! I find the only way to get better at hills is to just do them, even if you feel like you want to die, you will improve.

steamedtreaclesponge Tue 23-Aug-11 11:44:07

I'm a commuter (although not in rain like today's!) but by no means the serious kind in Lycra...

I have an ancient Raleigh bike which makes all sorts of worrying noises when I ride it, and at the moment I only have a twenty minute ride to get to work, so I tend to just cycle in my work clothes. I do love cycling but given that I live in central London, I don't find it particularly soothing... would be nice to be able to ride out in the countryside sometimes!

nocake Tue 23-Aug-11 11:55:28

Another cyclist checking in. I'm a commuter and triathlete. My commuting bike is a Ridgeback Nemesis with an 8 speed hub gear. I'm lazy when it comes to cleaning the commuting bike so having almost maintenance free gears is brilliant. I'm also looking forward to taking DD on it when she's old enough.

I have two road bikes. One is a steel frame Planet-X Kaffenback that's used for winter riding as it has full mudguards. The other is an Argon-18 Radon which is a fabulous bike. I'm a bit of a grimpeur and love the challenge of a good climb but I'm not built to generate power over long distances so can normally be found sitting on someone's wheel on the flat roads.

The bike collections was a bit bigger but had to be trimmed down a bit when DD arrived. I used to own a tandem, but DW is too much of a control freak to go on the back, and also an On-one Pompino which is a fixed gear bike. That was great fun to ride but wasn't useful enough to had to go.

steamedtreaclesponge I've ridden the road bikes in London a couple of times and it's horrible. The worst road users are other cyclists. Most of the drivers gave me enough space as long as I was clear with my signals but I was nearly taken out a couple of times by cyclists jumping red lights.

upahill Tue 23-Aug-11 13:42:57

Right that's it!!

I've MN to much for one day and I'm out on my bike.
I said up thread that I normally do trails, well I have a Peugot road bike that is ancient and had been left to rot at DH workplace.

Over the weekend he took it to a bike shop and got new tyres, tubes and so on. THe bike was in remarkably good nick seeing that I haven't riden it for 17 years!!!!

I'm going out on that and see if I can enjoy some roads. I only have to cycle a few miles to get away from the suburb into the country.

Thistledew Tue 23-Aug-11 15:36:55

Hi upahill.

Are you back yet? How was your ride?

upahill Tue 23-Aug-11 15:43:47

I've been out and it was ok!
It felt very strange because the gears are totally different ( On the frame of the bike rather than being part of the brake system)

I'm going to go out again soon, just MN for 10min while I have a brew and then go somewhere else.

I'm going out on my mountain bike tomorrow morning very early for a couple of hours on the moors before I head up to the Lakes for some walking.

Thistledew Wed 24-Aug-11 17:10:29

Anyone been out on their bike today?

I had planned to do my commute by bike today and nearly called it off because it wad raining this morning but went anyway, and in the end it was not raining by the time I set out.

I feel like I am still being quite cautious about the traffic and not slipping between the vehicles when the stop at lights as other cyclists seem to do. I'm not sure whether this means I am a wuss, or whether I just don't have a death wish!

upahill Wed 24-Aug-11 17:19:43

I've been on the mountain bike this morning and out on the road bike yesterday. I am planning on going on the road bike again tonight only for about 45mins as DH isn't used to riding a bike - saying that he enjoyed it last night.

This morning I was just up on the moors.

upahill Wed 24-Aug-11 17:22:02

Meant to add, after not going on a road bike for donkey's and being used to riding a mountain bike the skill is totally different.
Last night going down a hill I wanted to put my arse over the back tyre and keep my peddles even like I'm used to doing on the MB!
Even going round corners is different!

Thistledew Wed 24-Aug-11 17:33:01

What's different about corners? Going down hill I can guess, as there is much less chance of hitting a bump and going flying over the handlebars on a road bike.

upahill Wed 24-Aug-11 17:45:14

I'm just used to altering my seating position and having the peddles in a certain way and ready to anticipate rocks and roots twist and turns.
It isn't as dramatic going down the main road! grin

Thistledew Wed 24-Aug-11 17:57:25

I know on a road bike you bend your inside leg and put your weight onto your outside pedal if free wheeling around a corner, and was wondering if it is any different on a mountain bike.

I was thinking about this on my ride this morning, funnily enough. At the moment I have 35mm tri-cross tyres on my bike but have been thinking of switching to proper road tyres.

However, there are two sections of my route where I have to go along a dirt path. I have noticed that when I am on the dirt, the whole of the surface of the tyre gets mud on it and when I go back onto the straight Tarmac, only a thin strip in the middle is cleaned off. It is not until I go around a corner that the sides of the tyres get cleaned up.

It makes me think that it is probably no bad thing to gave some grip on the sides of the tyres for commuting in wet weather.

PrideOfChanur Wed 24-Aug-11 18:47:11

A cycling thread,great!
I've just started riding more after a long time not riding at all - I used to ride a lot ,though never lots of miles, when I was younger,and went bike touring.Now I think I'm addicted again - and I'm bit cranky today because a combination of awful weather and other things mean I haven't been out for too long.My aim is to get fitter and improve on the distance I can ride.

I have a Trek 1.5T WSD road bike,and a Trek hybrid which I bought when I started riding again.Then I decided it wasn't fast enough,hence the other one! I've also still got my old touring bike from xxx years ago which I'm fixing up.And now I've got a hankering to have a mountain bike and get off road - cue lots of teasing from the DCs who think I already have too many bikes...

What I'd really like now is a group,or even just one other person,to ride with.

One problem I've had since getting the road bike is that the back of my knees hurt - I do the same route on the hybrid and I'm fine. I'm thinking it must be saddle height,but I've already lowered it a bit and don't want to go too low,as apart from the knees my current position feels fine.
Does anyone have any suggestions? I did wonder if it was just adjusting to the new bike and would go in time.

I admire all you London commuters -the thought of cycling(or driving ) across Trafalgar Square etc sounds totally intimidating.

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