First ride, so unfit!

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gerroffandmilkit
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First ride, so unfit!

Postby gerroffandmilkit » Sun Nov 04, 2012 18:06 pm

Today was the day I took the Triban 3 out for its' inaugural ride.

Had a lie in this morning, in fact I lied in for too long. No breakfast, just coffee. Bad, bad idea.

It was cold out so wore cycling shorts, trackie bottoms. On top I wore a footie shirt (wicking) a sweat shirt and a thin waterproof outer shell. Popped on my cycling gloves and my brand new helmet and I was good to go.

This wasn't going to be a marathon session. Just a leisurely ride out to get used to the bike, switch through the gears and just get the feel of things.
Straight out of the driveway and into a hill. Wobbled a bit as I tried to get my left foot into the toe clip, very awkward! Then I was away!
Reached the top of the road and have to say I was blowing a bit. Rewarded with a short downhill section but straight away I was back into another hill. This was proving to be harder than I thought. Reached the summit, turned round, then came back down the hill.
On the flat the bike felt good. I was ******* through the gears smoothly and easily. I did feel a little cramped but felt this could be down to the fact that this was my first ride on a drop bar.

To get back home I had another short hill to climb. I was now feeling very warm, the blood was pumping and the lungs were aching!
Arrived home feeling breathless and absolutely knackered. I had a healthy sweat on but my legs didn't feel to tired. Too many years of smoking had taken their toll on my lungs which were aching. Not quite cardiac arrest material but I knew I'd had some serious exercise.

It should be noted that I am closer to 50 than 40, have smoked since I was 15 and have not had what you would consider regular exercise. In other words, I am very unfit. This was one of the reasons I bought the bike. It's never too late to improve ones fitness.

On reflection I think that I will improve my performance as I get used to the bike and get used to the effort required. It doesn't help living in a very hilly area and having no pre ride preparation.
This is no fad. The bike is back in the garage but will be out again, possibly tomorrow night for a "zip round the block" which will involve downhill and uphill sections. Short rides to get used to riding.
Nothing to stop me putting the bike into the back of the car and finding a decent flat section to ride.

I have a good feeling about cycling. With a bit more practice I'm sure it will get easier and more distance can be covered.
Have to say the padded shorts were fantastic. An excellent initial buy!!! :lol:

lc1981
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby lc1981 » Sun Nov 04, 2012 18:13 pm

Sounds like you have the right attitude. Stick with it and it will get easier.

gerroffandmilkit wrote:I did feel a little cramped but felt this could be down to the fact that this was my first ride on a drop bar.


Just checking - were you riding in the drops the whole time? Because there are three basic hand positions on a road bike: drops, hoods and tops. Most people ride on the hoods most of the time.

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Mikey23
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby Mikey23 » Sun Nov 04, 2012 18:15 pm

thanks for sharing that. that how it has been for many of us. dont expect too much too soon because it will take you a while for your body to adjust. sounds as though it might just have saved your life!

gerroffandmilkit
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby gerroffandmilkit » Sun Nov 04, 2012 18:29 pm

I was on the hoods most of the time, didn't go onto the drops once.

I think you're quite right Mikey, certainly was a wake up call. Not many fags smoked today and planning to stop completely before too long. I think I bought the bike at the right time. A steady build up should see cardio improvement with little and often rides. Hopefully when the better weather arrives I should be more up to longer rides and feeling fitter.

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Peddle Up!
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby Peddle Up! » Sun Nov 04, 2012 18:30 pm

The road to wellness. :)
Purveyor of "up" :)

danowat
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby danowat » Sun Nov 04, 2012 18:30 pm

gerroffandmilkit wrote:It was cold out so wore cycling shorts, trackie bottoms. On top I wore a footie shirt (wicking) a sweat shirt and a thin waterproof outer shell. Popped on my cycling gloves and my brand new helmet and I was good to go.


Jesus, treat yourself to some proper kit, it will make it so much more bearable.

gerroffandmilkit
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby gerroffandmilkit » Sun Nov 04, 2012 18:40 pm

danowat wrote:
gerroffandmilkit wrote:It was cold out so wore cycling shorts, trackie bottoms. On top I wore a footie shirt (wicking) a sweat shirt and a thin waterproof outer shell. Popped on my cycling gloves and my brand new helmet and I was good to go.


Jesus, treat yourself to some proper kit, it will make it so much more bearable.


I know, I know. This was my FIRST ride out on the bike. Never owned one before and only just bought it. For sure, proper cycling gear is well up on the agenda mate. My main initial concern was to firstly buy a helmet and cycling gloves. The cycling shorts were an extra at this moment, glad I got them!
Proper base layers, tops etc on the required list. Don't think the missus would be too pleased with immediate purchase as I've spent a fair few quid already.

danowat
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby danowat » Sun Nov 04, 2012 18:45 pm

I know, I know, but even the most accomplished cyclists would have probably had a mare of a ride in that kit!

MartAstur
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby MartAstur » Sun Nov 04, 2012 18:58 pm

Well done! and it looks like you have the right attitude. I am also the wrong side of 40 and have smoked up to 40 a day since I was 15 until 8 weeks ago when I started cycling. Cycling has certainly helped me to stay smoke free.
I live in a very hilly area and on my first run 8 weeks ago was worried I wouldn't even make it back. It was a real slog but 8 weeks later and I am zipping up the hill and if you stick with it I am sure you will be too - and quicker than you think.
Don't over do it just have fun and enjoy it and you will soon realise just how much fitter you have become. :)

gerroffandmilkit
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby gerroffandmilkit » Sun Nov 04, 2012 19:09 pm

MartAstur wrote:Well done! and it looks like you have the right attitude. I am also the wrong side of 40 and have smoked up to 40 a day since I was 15 until 8 weeks ago when I started cycling. Cycling has certainly helped me to stay smoke free.
I live in a very hilly area and on my first run 8 weeks ago was worried I wouldn't even make it back. It was a real slog but 8 weeks later and I am zipping up the hill and if you stick with it I am sure you will be too - and quicker than you think.
Don't over do it just have fun and enjoy it and you will soon realise just how much fitter you have become. :)


Thanks for the comments sir. Very inspirational. I will be sticking with it. Sounds like you live in a similar area to me. Can't go anywhere without going up a hill. I even live on a hill.
I'm sure it will get easier, just have to persevere and remain focussed. Even if it helps me boot the fags I'd class that as an achievement.

#david2012
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby #david2012 » Sun Nov 04, 2012 19:18 pm

Well done from me too! My only advice is don't over do it too soon .....use your gears .....and just enjoy yourself!

mustgettaller
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby mustgettaller » Sun Nov 04, 2012 19:20 pm

gerroffandmilkit wrote:
danowat wrote:
gerroffandmilkit wrote:It was cold out so wore cycling shorts, trackie bottoms. On top I wore a footie shirt (wicking) a sweat shirt and a thin waterproof outer shell. Popped on my cycling gloves and my brand new helmet and I was good to go.


Jesus, treat yourself to some proper kit, it will make it so much more bearable.


I know, I know. This was my FIRST ride out on the bike. Never owned one before and only just bought it. For sure, proper cycling gear is well up on the agenda mate. My main initial concern was to firstly buy a helmet and cycling gloves. The cycling shorts were an extra at this moment, glad I got them!
Proper base layers, tops etc on the required list. Don't think the missus would be too pleased with immediate purchase as I've spent a fair few quid already.


I think you've got the right attitude towards kit - you don't need cycling-specific clothing when you start out. Essentials are padded shorts, helmet and glasses (to stop insects getting in eyes - and to stop eyes watering on those howling descents!). A sensible choice of thin layers on top can suffice. Be careful with trackie bottoms and chains.

Having said the above, you can get a cycling top and leggings/tights (don't need to be cycling specific - I started with just lycra running ones) really reasonably if you shop around. I'd recommend leggings/tights over trackie bottoms as they're closer fit and flap less.

As others have said - just get out and ride. You'll be amazed at how much you improve the more you do! I'm always interested in what people regard as improvement, by the way. It's tempting to chase a pace or distance target too soon, and get demotivated.

Regarding the fags - well I have to admit (as an ardent anti-smoker), that there's no point in trying to measure/improve your cardivascular performance without giving up the evil weed! You're working at improving something, and rogering it with the smoking! :roll: But great that you're getting out on the bike, getting exercise, and enjoying it. Welcome to the club. :D

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Mikey41
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby Mikey41 » Sun Nov 04, 2012 19:47 pm

Well done!

Sounds a bit like my first ride, went 4.5 miles and had to stop twice for a breather, took me 45mins! Only a couple of weeks later, it was reduced to 25mins, now it's 20mins non-stop no problem. I'm also just the wrong side of 40 but after only 2 weeks of cycling, I knew I should have started riding 10 years ago! Loving it.
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Stueys
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby Stueys » Sun Nov 04, 2012 19:52 pm

Well done. Conscious that you've dropped a load of cash already but my advice would be to get a cadence computer. The majority of beginners mash along in a high gear at a low cadence, it feels faster. Well worth focussing on keeping cadence up near 90, it doesn't feel natural at first but will help you go further and faster.

MartAstur
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby MartAstur » Sun Nov 04, 2012 19:59 pm

Thanks for the comments sir. Very inspirational. I will be sticking with it. Sounds like you live in a similar area to me. Can't go anywhere without going up a hill. I even live on a hill.
I'm sure it will get easier, just have to persevere and remain focussed. Even if it helps me boot the fags I'd class that as an achievement.


Yep! I live at the top of a hill so if I want to get home I have to go back up it :?
Still, just to give you an idea; 8 weeks ago it took me 7mins 15 sec to get up it and the other day I did it in 5 mins 26 secs.http://app.strava.com/segments/2545575. Having just recieved a new carbon bike probably took 30 seconds off my time but even so I am at least a minute quicker on the same bike as I was 8 weeks ago.
Have you tried electronic cigs? I have one for those really bad moments and it seems to help. Mine is from Totally Wicked. just look them up on the web if you are interested. I hope to totally quit that in a couple of weeks too :)

gerroffandmilkit
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby gerroffandmilkit » Sun Nov 04, 2012 20:00 pm

Stueys wrote: my advice would be to get a cadence computer. The majority of beginners mash along in a high gear at a low cadence, it feels faster. Well worth focussing on keeping cadence up near 90, it doesn't feel natural at first but will help you go further and faster.


A what? :?: Sorry, thrown me with that one. Please discuss!

Crawlinguphills
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby Crawlinguphills » Sun Nov 04, 2012 20:12 pm

MartAstur wrote:
Thanks for the comments sir. Very inspirational. I will be sticking with it. Sounds like you live in a similar area to me. Can't go anywhere without going up a hill. I even live on a hill.
I'm sure it will get easier, just have to persevere and remain focussed. Even if it helps me boot the fags I'd class that as an achievement.


Yep! I live at the top of a hill so if I want to get home I have to go back up it :?
Still, just to give you an idea; 8 weeks ago it took me 7mins 15 sec to get up it and the other day I did it in 5 mins 26 secs.http://app.strava.com/segments/2545575. Having just recieved a new carbon bike probably took 30 seconds off my time but even so I am at least a minute quicker on the same bike as I was 8 weeks ago.
Have you tried electronic cigs? I have one for those really bad moments and it seems to help. Mine is from Totally Wicked. just look them up on the web if you are interested. I hope to totally quit that in a couple of weeks too :)



Biggest thing you can do is knock the smoking on the head. I was on about 40 a day when i started cycling, started using an e cig also, and totally stopped smoking aa it doesnt even feel like you ve quit, now hardly use the e-lite. Within a week you will feel the difference.

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Mikey41
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby Mikey41 » Sun Nov 04, 2012 20:14 pm

Cadence is how fast you are pedaling. It's more efficient to be turning the cranks at 80+rpm (some will spin at 100rpm, but you find your own comfortable speed).

It's a common mistake for new riders to use too high a gear, dropping a gear and spinning faster results in the same speed but less fatigue for the muscles. Bonus side-effect is it seems to burn fat quicker. Nobody would say I am fat, but I've lost 3Kg!

A computer can tell you the cadence on screen, or you can estimate it yourself by counting the pedal revolutions. If you get one rotation per second, that's too slow. One and a half is about right. Once you get used to pedalling quicker, you'll find your own comfortable speed.
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hipshot
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby hipshot » Sun Nov 04, 2012 20:22 pm

Short hills are great for training.

If you go out on them regularly you will definitely start to notice improvements in your streingth, stamina and speed. Take it easy for the first few weeks, you will be coughing up all sorts if you are a heavy smoker, but its likely to encourage you to pack them in which makes it worth it.

Stueys
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Re: First ride, so unfit!

Postby Stueys » Sun Nov 04, 2012 21:17 pm

Mikey41 wrote:Cadence is how fast you are pedaling. It's more efficient to be turning the cranks at 80+rpm (some will spin at 100rpm, but you find your own comfortable speed).

It's a common mistake for new riders to use too high a gear, dropping a gear and spinning faster results in the same speed but less fatigue for the muscles. Bonus side-effect is it seems to burn fat quicker. Nobody would say I am fat, but I've lost 3Kg!

A computer can tell you the cadence on screen, or you can estimate it yourself by counting the pedal revolutions. If you get one rotation per second, that's too slow. One and a half is about right. Once you get used to pedalling quicker, you'll find your own comfortable speed.


^ this. I'm not clever enough to count, avoid cars and breathe all at once though so I need the consistent display! When I first started I found it took me 2 to 3 weeks focussing on hitting the right cadence to get into a grove that felt natural. Once your legs get used to it you pedal at that rate but, for me anyway, it took a bit of practice.

I use a garmin 800 but this is a much cheaper option for cadence and speed, etc. http://www.wiggle.co.uk/cateye-strada-c ... -computer/


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