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 Post subject: Official Cycling Thread
PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2012 2:07 pm 
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Think the forum lacks one of these so here it is.

This thread is really to discuss both amateur bods like you and me riding as well as the pro riders. I understand the Olympic thread will probably cover a lot of the upcoming events but there seems to be an interest in cycling here.

Personally I love cycling. Raced a lot when I was younger then work, marriage, children et al meant I fell out of cycling. Fairly recently become a born again cycling mainly road cycling with a bit of off road thrown in as I have some excellent forest tracks not far from where I live.

I try to do about 100 - 150 miles a week if I can find the time but certainly not less than 50 even if I'm really busy.

Got a 125mile ride coming up in September so already feel like carb loading.

Oh and that reminds me, perhaps this is also a good place to discuss nutrition for cycling. Tips and tricks etc.

I'll be back soon with details of what I use to aid my energy levels!!!!!

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2012 2:16 pm 
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So you are a good start to direct my question to! I had no answers to the thread I opened this morning, so I'll repeat myself here.

Have you tried a 29er? I usually do off road, not long rides, up to 20-25 miles. But my pet hatred is the up-hills. Apparently the 29ers are better on the up-hills, they deliver the torque better. But I've never tried it myself, so I wanted an opinion!

What bike do you have Asphalt?


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2012 2:19 pm 
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Woot! Just recently got back out on my bike and I'm trying to do 20k a night to get fit and lose some weight. Spoke to my brother the other day and he has suggested we do the Etape du Tour next year for charity. Think it will probably be up Alpe d'Huez so lots of training is going to be required.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2012 2:27 pm 
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SchumieRules wrote:
So you are a good start to direct my question to! I had no answers to the thread I opened this morning, so I'll repeat myself here.

Have you tried a 29er? I usually do off road, not long rides, up to 20-25 miles. But my pet hatred is the up-hills. Apparently the 29ers are better on the up-hills, they deliver the torque better. But I've never tried it myself, so I wanted an opinion!

What bike do you have Asphalt?


I'm not much of an expert on MTB's but I personally think it depends significantly on what kind of riding you do the most. Off road riding can mean so much. 29ers offer greater rolling and float over small bumps and dips better I believe but for more fiddly riding with lots of corners, jumps etc I don't see them as an advantage. Possibly a disadvantage due to extra weight both to pedal along and also heavier steering.

My road bike is a mishmash. It's based on a fairly standard Boardman as the frames they make are so amazing. However it has been modded in various ways and a few sets of wheels make the most significant difference. Spending £1500 on a bike is great but spending £1500 on a lesser bike but have a choice of wheels to use depending on the cycling you have in mind is much more beneficial imo.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2012 2:33 pm 
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Thanks Asphalt. That's kind of the answer I'm looking for. I don't do many jumps, more like casual off-roading. And weight is a problem for me, I'm not the slimmest of guys.

I don't know much about road bikes myself, but my mate has a £1500 Dawes (though I think it is more touring style, not racing) and I've tried it. Freaking awesome bike!


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2012 2:45 pm 
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It is worth spending a bit (especially on wheels / hubs) if you are going to do some decent distances. It makes a huge difference.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2012 2:58 pm 
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Asphalt_World wrote:
It is worth spending a bit (especially on wheels / hubs) if you are going to do some decent distances. It makes a huge difference.


Yeah, the one I have my eye on is about £1350. Not too much, not too little. For a Carbon hardtail it is ok I think


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2012 7:04 pm 
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Good Idea for this thread AW :nod:

Last time I raced was about 10 years ago. I crashed on some diesel goin downhill and slid into a curb wrecking my back. My end to road racing there and then.

My bikes are well past it now compared to the new stuff, but they were state of the art (almost lol) back then. My main bike is a Bianchi with Campag chorus 9 speed, 53/39 chian rings and 172.5 cranks, Look clipless peddals, Mavic Open 4CD Rims and Vittoria Clincher tyres. Cinneli Eubios bars and 3TTT stem finished with a Rolls saddle. Oh and a Avocet computer - remember them? Well old stuff lol.

Then I have a Brian Rourke winter hack with mudgaurds and Shimano 105 gorupset and Mavic MA40 rims and the same Rolls saddle and bars/stem. All In storage now and not ridden in years but I just cant bring myself to sell them. I really want to start riding again but it's just to painful to to be on the drops, so... Oh well.... :-((

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2012 5:47 pm 
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Well what a stunning day for a ride. You can tell the weather this summer in the UK has been bad because it has taken until today for me to officially get my first bit of cycling sunburn on my knees, despite putting on protection I may add.

Then again I did ride 70 miles so was out in the sun for quite a time.

Anyone else get some nice rides in this weekend?

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2012 7:09 pm 
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I have started cycling, with the aim of trying to do at least 50 miles a week, weather permitting. I got a new mountain bike in the Christmas sales, which obviously does make me slower than if I was on a road or hybrid bike however because I live in a rural location it is better to have front suspension and beefier tyres for dealing with pot holes and if I need to go up on the verge to avoid traffic.

I downloaded a great free app for my phone called Endomondo, it uses GPS to track your route and gives you loads of information regarding speed, time, calories burned, water needed to replinish.

You can see my profile here where you can view the routes I've done and see the information it gives:

http://www.endomondo.com/profile/2998564


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 12:11 am 
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You should try Strava. brilliant app with a great segment facility.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 7:33 am 
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I use MyTracks, although their last update has been a bit of a mess.

Endomondo never really won me over. I'll try Strava to see if it is any good for me.


I've also been looking for an app that you can load your saved gpx files and navigate like a GPS with instructions. The only thing I found so far was Osmap, but the quality in the directions is horrible. Has anyone ever tried something similar?


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 7:58 am 
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My tracks is useful for walking but for cycling it has a serious lack of features. Strava gives you an amazing amount of details and the fact that you can ride segments and become King of the Mountain (if you are good enough) is really good fun.

I have created some segments near where I live but I have also made some private so I can keep track of my progress on certain rides without other peoples data getting in the way.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 8:19 am 
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I've put it in my HOX now, hopefully I will try it soon. I still need to explore it and see what features it has.

Do you have any recommendations about the other one? I can find GPX files from the internet for interesting routes around the place, but no way I can use the files for navigation, appart from the Osmand app, which is really nasty. Any ideas?


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 8:30 am 
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I have to say that I never use a GPS to follow a route for cycling or walking. I use them purely for recording what I have done.

I have a thing about maps. I love getting maps out and plotting a route. The only planning I do with Strava is using the explore facility and seeing where any segments are near to where I live so that I can take a couple it on a bike ride and attack them to see how far up the leader board I can get.

A number of pro cyclists use Strava, in fact during the Tour de France some riders published their route traces for us to look at. Kind of depressing seeing the speeds they were riding at!!!

Oh, and using Strava once or twice really does not do it any justice. Where it comes in to its own is when you ride a route, or at least a section of a route a number of times and you can compare your progress.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 8:40 am 
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Hmmm, last night I did my usual 7 miles to my mate's house, but I was alone, not with my girlfriend slowing me down. I thought it was the fastest I've ever done it at about 35 minutes. It would have been handy to know!

Anyway, I was only wondering when it comes to exploring new tracks, it would be nice to be able to navigate properly with a gpx file.

I'll use it for the next few riders and see how do I do!


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 10:46 am 
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Well I've just ordered a set of rollers to keep me peddling when either the weather is dreadful or I can't get out cos of the kids or whatever.

I'll let you know when I'm in hospital!!!!!

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 1:19 pm 
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Well I feel almost embarrassed with all this talk of what, for me, are very expensive bikes. I'll not tell you what it is, I know it's pants, but it was half price, so at £250 it was by far the best I could justify buying. However, as I do about 25miles most days it is showing some ware and tare. I'd definitely recommend people buy the best quality they can afford, not necessarily with all the bells and whistles, but quality.

Anyway, although I ride quite a lot, I'd like some advice if anyone else has had this problem. I find that if I go out for a really good, hard ride, unless I eat about a years worth of food straight after, I get a migraine that knocks me out of the world for a couple of days. I always make sure I've eaten some time before I go, so as I've got some energy, and keep my fluids up while I ride. But this seemingly excessive eating to prevent a migraine rather defeats the fat loosing benefits of riding!

If anyone's got any experience of this, or has any ideas as to how I can avoid a migraine without eating the universe, I'd be most grateful.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 2:38 pm 
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How far are you going when you get a bad head following a ride? In fact. more to the point, how long do the rides take?

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2012 7:39 am 
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Asphalt_World wrote:
Well I've just ordered a set of rollers to keep me peddling when either the weather is dreadful or I can't get out cos of the kids or whatever.

I'll let you know when I'm in hospital!!!!!


Out of interest, why did you choose rollers rather that a trainer?


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2012 8:53 am 
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Ok, I've ordered the 29er. Can't wait!


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:42 pm 
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Asphalt_World wrote:
How far are you going when you get a bad head following a ride? In fact. more to the point, how long do the rides take?


They're not particularly long rides, only about 2 and a half hours, which isn't much longer than my usual rides, I just ride harder as well as for a bit longer. I probably ride about 35-40 miles during these rides. My usual rides, which do not result in migraines, are about 1.5 to 2 hours and 25-30 miles.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:56 pm 
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I might suggest you folks to turn on your TVs after you return from your daily rides now that the Vuelta has started, might help the migraines and stuff a bit, the GC battle has started in earnest already and it's just the 4th stage. It's another mountaintop finish today.

Might well be the best race of the year.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2012 1:21 pm 
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Jezick wrote:
Asphalt_World wrote:
Well I've just ordered a set of rollers to keep me peddling when either the weather is dreadful or I can't get out cos of the kids or whatever.

I'll let you know when I'm in hospital!!!!!


Out of interest, why did you choose rollers rather that a trainer?


Good question.

Whilst there are pros and cons of both, the main reason I chose rollers is because it has a much much more natural feel. Trainers leave you locked in and you can become a very lazy rider (in terms of technique not in effort that is) because you don't have to think about what you are doing. You can pound out the miles whilst sitting up reading a book should you choose to do so.

On trainers you need to concentrate and the smoother you are at peddling, the smoother you will be on the trainer. A lot of studies show that people who use trainers actually become far more efficient cyclist because you focus on smooth even pedal strokes rather than simply peddling until you've had enough. The smoother you ride both in terms of peddle strokes as well as keeping the bike upright and in control, the more power going in to moving you forward and less power is lost through wobbling around. After all, a bike wants to run perfectly upright and in a straight line all things being equal so if it moves around it is only doing this because of your body motion. Body motion only comes through you moving so that is energy going in to things other than making your bike go forwards.

Now for the average casual rider this may not make any noticeable difference but as someone who likes to ride somewhere between 150 and 250 miles a week and throws in 60 - 100 mile rides in whenever possible, the smoother I can ride the better it will be.

Secondly, with a trainer locking the back wheel in you can also pick up injuries because you can end up riding for a long time on it without changing your position at all. This never happens on rollers because the bike is always moving around if only slightly. Again this is much more natural. Therefore when you get back on the road it does not feel that different.

They are the main reasons but to add to it, trainers have a nasty habit of wearing rear tyres out rather quickly compared to rollers which are believed to cause less wear than riding on roads. Companies even supply trainer tyres for your rear wheel because of this. They are much more hard wearing.

Although I have two sets of wheels for different riding, I don't really want to have a third rear wheel with a trainer tyre fitted. If I bought a cheap rear wheel it would feel rather different and I'm not going to spend lots on a decent rear wheel simply for the trainer.

The one downside of rollers is that they are not so good if you want to do some serious interval training. Being able to adjust the resistance on a trainer is quite useful but as I tend to ride a lot of miles most weeks I tend to continue that kind of training on the open road and use the rollers for times when the weather is diabolical or at times when I simply can't go for a ride for whatever reason, normally because I'm in charge of the children and the wife is out.

I also like the thought of using rollers as a warm up for hard rides. I tend to find I need to get somewhere around 7-10 miles done before I feel fully warmed up and able to attack hills or a decent average speed without my legs hurting too much. On long rides this is not possible but I am looking forward to fitting in say 15 mins or so on the trainer at home and then going straight out on to the road to attack a timed ride.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2012 1:43 pm 
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toilet wrote:
Asphalt_World wrote:
How far are you going when you get a bad head following a ride? In fact. more to the point, how long do the rides take?


They're not particularly long rides, only about 2 and a half hours, which isn't much longer than my usual rides, I just ride harder as well as for a bit longer. I probably ride about 35-40 miles during these rides. My usual rides, which do not result in migraines, are about 1.5 to 2 hours and 25-30 miles.


OK. That's a decent length ride especially if you are putting in some effort rather than simply cruising along. I suspect it's down to nutrition / hydration.

Firstly it's worth noting that on average a human body can hold enough energy for around 90 minutes continuous exercise. You are clearly riding for a good bit longer that this. Therefore you need to fuel up as you go. Eating a lot before you ride does not make much of a difference. I tend to eat a lot of carbohydrate rich foods all week because it keeps my energy levels up but if I have a ride which is going to take 2.5 hours or more I will try to load up on carbs for 3 days prior. Simply eating a ton of pasta the night before will not be enough.

Peanut Butter on Brown Toast is excellent, dried fruit is also really good. Pasta, spuds etc. You can find lots of choice without a problem I am sure.

Eating little and often is generally also a lot better for storing up carbs because if you eat too much in one go a lot of it simply won't be taken up by the body and will exit a few hours after you ate it if you know what I mean?!!!!!

I also drink lots (but not too much) in the couple of days leading up to a long ride.

However, no matter how good my preparation is, I can not sustain any kind of decent average speed after a couple of hours of hard cycling unless I take things during the ride.

There is one thing I never do without which is the High5 4-1 energy drink. The 4-1 ration is 4 parts carbs to 1 part protein. These can be bought off the internet for a very reasonable price. As you only need to add water, if you by it in the 1.6kg tubs it works out much much cheaper than all those dodgy lucozade sports drinks and other similar drinks they sell in petrol stations.

I try to drink a standard bike bottles worth (600ml) every 60 - 90 minutes depending on how hot the weather is and how hard I am riding. However you need to drink it long before you ever feel thirsty. Once you are feeling really thirsty it's probably too late to recover during the ride. You need to keep thirst away rather than try to deal with it once it has appeared.

Due to the fact that I can't actually carry enough drink for all my long rides it also use the High5 4-1 nutrition bar. Again, it's good value for money and contains the same amount of protein and carbs as a drink but of course can be eaten in one go.

This along with bananas and jaffa cakes generally get me through most rides.

I do tend to carry a spare helping of the drink (in it's powder form) in my saddle bag so that I can always call in at a shop or cafe if things get desperate and make up another bottles worth of it.

Finally, when I get back home I then drink at least a pint of milk. It hydrates being mostly water of course, but also contains lots of protein which you need post excercise to repair te damage to the muscles plus you also get some carbs from milk to help re-energise you post ride.

Then normally some more toast and peanut butter or nutella.

Now I know the above seems like rather a lot of hassle but if you break it down to the individual bits and remove all the guff I have written it's actually quite straight forward. The drinks take minutes to make up just before the ride, I buy jaffa cakes (I wrap a few in tin foil and put them in my back pocket of my cycling top) and bananas in bulk, and bread and peanut butter is hardly difficult to get hold of in most places.

At the end of the day, I know that if I don't fuel up enough both prior to and during a ride I will suffer later and will get headaces myself sometimes.

A small amount of effort buying in the correct things for your ride and getting a little routine together to make sure you are prepared for each ride is more than worth it.

Oh, and if I am only going to go out for 60-90 minutes riding I either just take normal squash to drink with jaffa cakes and a banana, or if it's very hot I will still make up a High5 drink just to be on the safe side.

It's very easy to think that if you exercise a lot then your body is fitter and therefore you can push more. It's not as simple as that. No matter how fit you get, your body still has limits to how much energy it can store so you must ensure you keep fuelled up at all times. Some time ago I was lazy in this department and paid a heavy price by hitting the wall. It's the most horrible feeling and if you are out in the middle of nowhere you could be completely stuck. Luckily I was only a couple of miles from home and managed to ride back at about 5 miles an hour and then collapsed on the bed and slept for about 4 hours straight!!!!!!! Not to be repeated.

N.B. I am in no way asssociated with High5, Jaffa Cakes or Banana's!!!!!!!!! It just works for me......

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2012 3:13 pm 
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Sky double standards. Blamed Rolland for not waiting after Evans' puncture in the Tour, and now they are drilling the bunch as Valverde crashes because he is a threat to Froome and Evans wasn't. :thumbdown:

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2012 3:32 pm 
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Asphalt_World wrote:
toilet wrote:
Asphalt_World wrote:
How far are you going when you get a bad head following a ride? In fact. more to the point, how long do the rides take?


They're not particularly long rides, only about 2 and a half hours, which isn't much longer than my usual rides, I just ride harder as well as for a bit longer. I probably ride about 35-40 miles during these rides. My usual rides, which do not result in migraines, are about 1.5 to 2 hours and 25-30 miles.


Long post


I also eat oat bars, preferably with honey, great at releasing energy slowly over time.


I agree with AW regarding the rest


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2012 3:45 pm 
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I ride about 60 km per weekend on flat routes.

I like uphills. My longest single uphill was during some holidays camp with bikes. It was 15 km of continuous climb. From about 40 kids I was 2nd, but now I'm about 15 kilos or more heavier and I'm no longer 14 years old... I find it much harder to climb, but it's still fun. :)

About GC, I think this Vuelta is the best tour this year so far. Both Giro and Tour were pretty boring.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2012 4:02 pm 
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Indeed.

Code:
1   101   RODRIGUEZ, Joaquin   KAT   13h 18' 45''
2   181   FROOME, Christopher   SKY   + 1''
3   201   CONTADOR, Alberto   STB   + 5''
4   166   MOLLEMA, Bauke   RAB   + 9''
5   161   GESINK, Robert   RAB   + 9''
6   188   URAN, Rigoberto   SKY   + 11''
7   107   MORENO, Daniel   KAT   + 14''
8   19   ROCHE, Nicolas   ALM   + 24''
9   168   TEN DAM, Laurens   RAB   + 46''
10   1   COBO, Juan José   MOV   + 47''

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 2:44 pm 
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Asphalt_World wrote:
toilet wrote:
Asphalt_World wrote:
How far are you going when you get a bad head following a ride? In fact. more to the point, how long do the rides take?


They're not particularly long rides, only about 2 and a half hours, which isn't much longer than my usual rides, I just ride harder as well as for a bit longer. I probably ride about 35-40 miles during these rides. My usual rides, which do not result in migraines, are about 1.5 to 2 hours and 25-30 miles.
a nice detailed post


Thank you very much indeed. Although I knew you needed to refill, as it were, not being in the cycling fraternity, although I cycle a lot, I didn't realise that my rides constituted a proper ride.

I shall definitely check out these High 5 mixtures, and pay more attention to my nutritional intake, like to start taking snackage with me when I ride.

Again, thank you very much, most appreciated.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 2:51 pm 
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No probs.
The biggest issue is duration. Regardless of the sport, if you are basically active for more than 90 minutes you need to take in extra carbs all the time as your body will simply run out otherwise.

Let me know how you get on.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 3:12 pm 
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Been cycling 2-3 times a week since Wiggo's glory run and I've really started noticing the results. I'm been a cyclist all my life, but as with most things I don't bother with all the technical stuff or planning, I just ride the thing.

Got a little 10-mile circuit that essentially covers the whole town, so I get out and do that after work every couple days (would do it more but my legs don't seem too happy if I try at the minute). My bike is a Mongoose MTB (26 I think) which is a decent MTB but I'd imagine makes hard work of the hilly route on the roads. I've considered getting a proper road/racing bike but it's a big spend and so I'm waiting to see if this road cycling kick lasts long enough to justify it.

I've traditionally always been a mountain biker, but since moving to the East Midlands (where there aren't many mountains...or forests!) I found myself just going round generic off road paths which bore the crap out of me.

Since taking up cycling around town I've started enjoying it again, even if I did have to concede and wear a helmet for the first time since I was about 9. I quite enjoy dodging cars, lampposts pedestrians etc...it may not be the tree trunks that I'm used to but it's still a fun challenge!

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 3:15 pm 
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Don't think you are conceding anything wearing a helmet.

People are crazy imo if they don't ALWAYS wear one!

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 3:53 pm 
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Never wore one before, but then I was generally off road on my own...and I always took the Nascar attitude to safety... "If I wreck I wreck, if I die I die". If I crashed it would be my own stupid fault, and I'd live with the consequences.

Unfortunately now I'm around moronic drivers and pedestrians it's more of a jungle out there...the only reason I'm wearing one is for protection from their ignorance and bloody-mindedness. I just resent having to look like a tw@t in a hat! :D

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 3:55 pm 
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Asphalt_World wrote:
Don't think you are conceding anything wearing a helmet.

People are crazy imo if they don't ALWAYS wear one!


Agreed. And my mate has the mark on his helmet from the tree to show it...


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 4:55 pm 
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SchumieRules wrote:
Asphalt_World wrote:
Don't think you are conceding anything wearing a helmet.

People are crazy imo if they don't ALWAYS wear one!


Agreed. And my mate has the mark on his helmet from the tree to show it...


Yep. What amazes me is the fact that people only think they are useful at certain times!!!!!

No matter how good you are on a bike, no matter where you are riding, you really should wear one at all times.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 3:55 am 
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Location: United States
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 12:43 pm 
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Rollers have been delivered.
Rollers have been built.
Rollers have been tested.
999 has been added to my speed dial!

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 3:19 pm 
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Asphalt_World wrote:
Rollers have been delivered.
Rollers have been built.
Rollers have been tested.
999 has been added to my speed dial!


Well done!

I'm just waiting for the phonecall to go around the shop and get the bike. Will probably be tomorrow now


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 8:03 pm 
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Oh yes! Went out for a quick 30 mile spin then once home decided to crack these rollers.

Took only 15 mins of riding with one hand holding on to a fence taking it off for longer and longer each minute.

Now I can ride them. I'm still expecting a big off at some point and am wearing trainers. Need more confidence before I clip my feet it.

They're fab.

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