Recent content by Powderfinger

  1. Powderfinger

    Mirrors on bicycles?

    I would also point out another benefit of having a mirror mounted on the left side of your handlebar. Mine sits just under the top of the left hand brakehood, sticking out about four or five inches to the left (street) side of the bike... Maybe I'm imagining things, but I could swear that cars...
  2. Powderfinger

    Suggested upgrades to a Bianchi Pista

    I just got the gang green pista. I like it so far (only ridden about 150 miles), but it is a whole different ride than my Trek 5200. One thing I've noticed is that my legs are tired in a whole different way; specifically, my hamstrings have been getting all locked up after riding the fixed...
  3. Powderfinger

    Listening to music when riding

    i listen to audiobooks.
  4. Powderfinger

    Running as a aid to cycling ?

    I'll just say this: in college I rowed crew, a sport which really rocks your quads, so I thought I would be great at stairs. Then came the stadium workouts: hands down the best / hardest workout I've done... essentially sprinting up stadium benches, skipping every second row. It's a ***** of a...
  5. Powderfinger

    Buying a fixed gear?

    Hey people, I was about to have my LBS build me a fixed gear out of random parts for about $200, but then I saw this Mercier on ebay for $300. Any thoughts ? Has anyone ridden one of these?
  6. Powderfinger

    Need a hill route, Newport Bch, CA

    One word of advice: Stay off Laguna Canyon Road until you've driven it once. Psycho drivers, twisty roads, and neglible bike lanes can make for more excitement than you might be looking for.
  7. Powderfinger

    Absolute beginner needs some help

    I'd also throw in some work on your abs and lower back to help solidify your core muscles. Doing a few sets of back extensions and situps every week, plus some stretching / yoga did wonders for me when I first started out a couple of years ago.
  8. Powderfinger

    Will 2 rides a week through the winter get me in shape for the spring?

    I've read all the stuff about how lifting is counterproductive for producing results on the bike, but in my subjective experience this has not been true. I've found that doing some quick circuit workouts that include back extensions, sit ups, hip flexors, shoulders, squats, etc has made me...
  9. Powderfinger

    184 mile ride on dirt trail. How to train??

    Hey all, I want to ride the C&O (Chesapeke & Ohio) canal trail next spring. It's 184 miles of hardpacked dirt / pebble road. Most people do it in two or three days. I've read that you can expect a 6-8 mile per hour average since there's no pavement and the trail conditions vary a lot. So how...
  10. Powderfinger

    Good ride distance for a beginner?

    I've got a similar distance ride I do a few times a week -- the Capital Crescent Trail in DC / Maryland, which goes from Georgetown to Bethesda and on to Silver Spring. The total distance round trip is about 17 miles. In order to increase my mileage, I start out doing the 17 miles, and then I...
  11. Powderfinger

    Books on Cycling

    My favorite book on cycling is Tim Krabbe's The Rider.
  12. Powderfinger

    Are Dual-action Stationary Bikes Good?

    Hey, I used a dual action (I'm assuming this is the kind with the arms that swing) while recovering from cancer and a semi-paralyzed arm. In that state it was good because I couldn't really walk and the moving handlebars allowed me to get more of my body into the action. That having been said...
  13. Powderfinger

    How do I fix lower back discomfort at the end of my rides?

    This might sound odd, but I rowed crew in college, and it positively cured all back pain I had up until then. When I stopped rowing, the back pain came back. If your gym has an ergometer, I would suggest getting someone to show you a proper stroke, and then working a few minutes of rowing into...
  14. Powderfinger

    Fixed Gears... Can someone explain?

    Quick Question: I live back and forth between New York and DC, and 9 out of 10 bicycle messengers are riding fixed gear bikes these days. This seems counterintuitive to me since brakes are (to my mind) a necessity in heavy traffic. So why the popularity? I've heard vague talk about better...
  15. Powderfinger

    Is locking bike a bad idea? Best lock?

    Hey, I've got a Trek 5200, which is uninsured and I have no means to replace it if it gets stolen as I'm a poor graduate student. Therefore, I've never taken my bike anywhere if I couldn't be with it the whole time. This kind of cramps my style, however, as it prevents me from riding to the gym...