Bike Recommendation for Overweight

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by Dsat, Mar 14, 2003.

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  1. Dsat

    Dsat Guest

    I'm 34 year old male weighing in at about 250 lbs and am fairly athletic. At least I was athletic at
    200 lbs (played college baseball), but not sure now. All of my riding will be on pavement mostly
    occuring at a high school track and surrounding roads. I will be riding pretty much for fitness only
    and not taking in the sights. I'm not so much concerned about the miles that I ride, but more with
    time in the beginning. Hopefully, I'll ride 45 minutes to an hour about 4 times a week and possibly
    more on weekends. I'm confused about what type of bike to purchase. The bike stores that I have
    visited this week have a few 2002 models marked down, and I just want to make sure that they aren't
    pushing one on me just to get rid of them. I'll gladly take a good deal, but want to make sure that
    I get the correct bike. Both shops recommended a hybrid type with one recommending something like a
    Trek Navigator 300 and another shop recommending the Giant Cypress DS. I would want some smooth
    tires on either one of these. I've read where some people suggest getting a touring bike because it
    has decently wide tires and are good for fitness training. However, since I'm overwieght, I'm not
    sure that I could ride in the bent over position comfortably. I want to ride at a descent speed for
    a descent amount of time to improve fitness level and lose some weight. Any recommendations
    appreciated and I'd like to hear from some over overweight folks as well to their experiences with
    bike types.
     
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  2. To be honest, I've never had a problem with the weight. When I got back into cycling 3 years ago I
    bought a bottom of the line Trek 4300 mountain bike. Put 3,000 miles on that baby and wore it down
    only because I wasn't attentive enough to keeping the gearset clean here in rainy Portland. I was
    riding that bike from like 380lbs. down to like 290lbs. Now at 255lbs. I ride a Trek 1000 entry
    level road bike. The only problem with it being that early on I broke a couple spokes so they
    replaced the spokes on the back wheel with a heavier guague and I haven't had a problem since. So my
    point is that going entry level should be fine, pretty much. How well the bike fits you is the most
    important thing, regardless of style. Obviously hybrids, cyclecross, touring or mountain bikes are
    likely to have tougher rear wheels. But like I said I regularly caryy my 250lb. self plus panniers
    filled with clothes and food and have no problems. Just make sure the shop gives you time and they
    seem helpful and trustworthy. That way they should focus on fit and then if you have any problems
    due to weight they'll either be willing to replace the spokes or at least give you a break on the
    labor as they put together a stronger wheel.

    I may be way off, but that's just my experience. As helpful as my LBS is they won't replace the rear
    wheel outright (focusing on that because I've found that to be the only trouble spot at my weight)
    from the start. So I've always just given it a try first and it's worked out. If you're paranoid you
    can buy a touring wheel or something from the start, but because of what I said above I've always
    given the stock wheels a try first and haven't had problems yet.

    preston
     
  3. In article <[email protected]>, DSat
    <[email protected]> wrote:
    >I'm 34 year old male weighing in at about 250 lbs and am fairly athletic. At least I was athletic
    >at 200 lbs (played college baseball), but not sure now. All of my riding will be on pavement mostly
    >occuring at a high school track and surrounding roads. I will be riding pretty much for fitness
    >only and not taking in the sights. I'm not so much concerned about the miles that I ride, but more
    >with time in the beginning. Hopefully, I'll ride 45 minutes to an hour about 4 times a week and
    >possibly more on weekends.

    That is really quite a bit of regular riding and you are going to need a pretty decent quality bike
    or you will ride it into the ground. With respect to durability, low-end bikes tend to have inferior
    wheels and the drivetrain parts don't last as long, especially if you ride in the wet.

    > I'm confused about what type of bike to purchase. The bike stores that I have visited this week
    > have a few 2002 models marked down, and I just want to make sure that they aren't pushing one on
    > me just to get rid of them. I'll gladly take a good deal, but want to make sure that I get the
    > correct bike. Both shops recommended a hybrid type with one recommending something like a Trek
    > Navigator 300 and another shop recommending the Giant Cypress DS.

    What is the purpose of the suspension? If you plan to be mostly a road rider I don't see why rear
    suspension is desirable. It adds to the price, it makes the bike heavy without making it strong, and
    it's a mechanism which can fail. Cheap full suspension bikes also tend to impede good spinning (high
    RPM pedalling).

    > I would want some smooth tires on either one of these. I've read where some people suggest
    > getting a touring bike because it has decently wide tires and are good for fitness training.

    You can put smooth tires on any kind of bicycle so that does not constrain your purchase.

    A touring bike would be great. Ask the Trek dealer about the 520 or the XO-1.

    > However, since I'm overwieght, I'm not sure that I could ride in the bent over position
    > comfortably.

    There are plenty of 50-pounds-overweight people riding drop-handlebar road bikes, and it is quite
    possible to make the fit as upright as you might wish if your dealer is willing and able to fit it
    to you the way you want it. If you want "bars up" that is possible. The main thing is to find a
    dealer willing to do the fitting work so that you end up being comfortable. A high-rise stem and
    perhaps some shallow-drop handlebars can make you fit very differently on the bike. Even with a
    proper-fitting bike you also need to assume that beginning to ride is going to involve some
    discomfort and lots of miles in the saddle is the cure.
     
  4. I too am overweight. I ride a Bianchi San Remo and I *adore* it. I enjoy cycling and it can cope
    with my large ar*e ;-)

    Cheers, helen s

    ~~~~~~~~~~
    Flush out that intestinal parasite and/or the waste product before sending a reply!

    Any speeliong mistake$ aR the resiult of my cats sitting on the keyboaRRRDdd
    ~~~~~~~~~~
     
  5. Scottw44

    Scottw44 Guest

    It is with great interest that i respond to this thread.

    I a reposting my post of last year, the right after my first century. I wound up with 8k
    for the year.

    Nearly a year later I am still cycling, still in shape, and just bought a new set of light weight
    wheels as a gift for myself.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    ----------
    2 Mays ago I came home from my niece's christening at 308 pounds. I bought an inexpensive steel
    hybrid, graduated to a better hybrid, and finally, when I reached my goal weight, I rewarded
    myself with a Torelli Countach. I purchased the bike last July and had 6100 miles on her coming
    into the weekend.

    Yesterday I completed my first ever century. It was a small charity ride, 100 people or so in total,
    with about 15 signed up for the century.

    Somehow, during my turn to pull, the group realized that we were off course and had been for about
    the last 2 pulls. We were about 18 miles into the ride. The group wound up splitting into 3
    factions, and I wound up going off with 3 people, and lost the person who I was riding with.

    So my first century wound up with 3 total strangers, 2 of who would become my new best friends. That
    is because at mile 30, our group went down to 3, as one of my new friends bonked bad. He had been
    continually pulling and seemed like the strongest in our group. But the 106 degree heat on the roads
    got to him. We tried a few times to bring him along, but eventually he bade us well, and we were
    just 3 for the next 70 miles.

    I have only been above 70 miles 3 times, the last time last Sunday when I did an 80 miler, the last
    30 completely alone as the person I was with only was out for 50. One of the other riders had never
    been past 50, and the third was a veteran of a 20 centuries or so. His guidance was key...as were
    his immense pulls into the wind. Thanks Eric. And as for Louie, he now has jumped from 40 mile
    rides to a century overnight. Until he told us this at the 62 mile rest stop, I just assumed that
    he does this all the time. He was an animal out there. #'s were exchanged and we will all hook up
    to ride again.

    At mile 91, I began to realize that we were going make it. The winds had kicked up, and we were in a
    20 mph headwind since the rest stop at mile 62. Just then, with the realization of starting to feel
    good again, I hit a jagged piece of glass...Eric had a spare tire, as mine was blown to smithereens.
    But my point out of the glass saved the others from flatting. Louie held the bike, my sore hands
    administered to the flat, Eric provided a tire out of nowhere, and we were off again.

    Soon after, we all had a great lunch that was waiting for us at the finish, and we said our
    farewells. I now really feel like a cyclist.

    thanks for letting me ramble.

    scott

    --
    reply to:

    [email protected]
     
  6. Fritz M

    Fritz M Guest

    [email protected] (DSat) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...

    > All of my riding will be on pavement mostly occuring at a high school track and surrounding
    > roads. I will be riding pretty much for fitness only and not taking in the sights.

    Unless you are just absolutely and totally committed to your fitness goals, you'll find that riding
    around in circles will get so boring as to drive you bonkers. Make cycling fun, and the fitness
    comes as a benefit.

    You might start out forcing yourself to cycle by doing stuff like commuting to work. If your work is
    too far, drop your car off at a point some reasonable distance away and bike to your car. Have
    somebody drop you off with your bike ten miles from home.

    You'll hate it for about the first week or so, but if you keep at it cycling kind of gets into you
    and you'll find yourself not wanting to get out of the saddle. Once you get to that level of
    fitness, then you can start thinking about some more recreational riding.

    Good luck on your exercise plan! I laud you on your efforts and commitment.

    RFM
     
  7. I ride with drop bars set about an inch above the saddle. I'm about 35-40 pounds overweight, and
    find the bent-over position a bit cumbersome. I used the 60-degree stem that originally came with
    the bike (I tried 10-degree stems, but found them too uncomfortable). And the more upright riding
    position doesn't hamper me, even in a headwind, as I can place my hands lower to get under the wind
    without being too horizontal. The 104km ride to Galveston and back, my second metric century, went
    smoothly...and this after I'd started biking again, after about a ten-year lapse, a heart attack
    three years ago, and kicking a 26-year smoking habit.
     
  8. [email protected] (DSat) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...

    > baseball), but not sure now. All of my riding will be on pavement mostly occuring at a high
    > school track and surrounding roads. I will be riding pretty much for fitness only and not taking
    > in the sights.

    I can not imagine anything as completely and thoroughly **dull** as riding around in a circle on a
    track. You might as well swim laps -- it would probably be cheaper and a better form of exercise.

    Mr. Satterfield, I highly, highly recommend getting out there on the road. Yes, it's a little scary
    at first, but you will gain confidence and skill as you practice. You can do it!

    Warm Regards,

    Claire Petersky Home of the meditative cyclist: http://home.earthlink.net/~cpetersky/Welcome.htm
     
  9. > I can not imagine anything as completely and thoroughly **dull** as riding around in a circle on a
    > track. You might as well swim laps -- it would probably be cheaper and a better form of exercise.

    so you're not a big fan of the velodrome, eh? *grin*

    Incidentally, riding around a high school running track strikes me as a bit dangerous. I mean,
    there are all those runners who will be moving a lot slower, and random people crossing the track
    at all times. Not to mention balls, errant kids, etc. And those are flat corners, which you can't
    lean into (gravel).

    If you wanted to do that, get yourself a track bike and find your local velodrome..

    >
    > Mr. Satterfield, I highly, highly recommend getting out there on the road. Yes, it's a little
    > scary at first, but you will gain confidence and skill as you practice. You can do it!

    The trick, I find, is kind of like driving. You don't get into your car and drive right on an
    Interstate with no preparation. You drive around the neighborhood. Then a bit further. Then a little
    further still--until you're ready to go flat-out and long distances

    same on a bike; ride in your neighborhood street. imagine your'e a car with two wheels and a big,
    2-cylinder, Wheaties-fueled engine. Remember to look, signal, look, move.

    It can be fun.

    -Luigi eventually, you can take on the fun that is the Elephant & Castle roundabout!

    >
    > Warm Regards,
    >
    > Claire Petersky Home of the meditative cyclist: http://home.earthlink.net/~cpetersky/Welcome.htm
     
  10. Matthew Reed

    Matthew Reed Guest

    I have lost 30 pounds over the last three months. I already had a few bikes from my previous years
    as an active rider. I gained the weight over the last couple years working behind a desk. I am in
    touch with the feeling of being heavy on a bike. I strongly suggest that you ride in a relatively
    upright position until you get your gut under control. You risk a lower back injury if you ride in
    too aggressive of a position. A city bike with 700c wheels will allow you easy riding on smooth
    surfaces and an upright position. If you plan on getting in good shape and riding more actively, you
    may want to consider a sportier bike adjusted for your current needs so you can change it later. You
    need to make sure to keep your stomach muscles tightened while you ride to help your back. An
    elastic back brace does little to support your back while you ride, but it will remind you to hold
    in your stomach muscles, so it can, in a round about way, be of some assistance.

    Also, if possible add some weight training to your list of things to do. If you increase your muscle
    mass, your metabolism will increase which helps get rid of the weight. Cardio work alone will take
    much longer than cardio with weight training.

    "Luigi de Guzman" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > > I can not imagine anything as completely and thoroughly **dull** as riding around in a circle on
    > > a track. You might as well swim laps -- it would probably be cheaper and a better form of
    > > exercise.
    >
    > so you're not a big fan of the velodrome, eh? *grin*
    >
    > Incidentally, riding around a high school running track strikes me as a bit dangerous. I mean,
    > there are all those runners who will be moving a lot slower, and random people crossing the track
    > at all times. Not to mention balls, errant kids, etc. And those are flat corners, which you can't
    > lean into (gravel).
    >
    > If you wanted to do that, get yourself a track bike and find your local velodrome..
    >
    > >
    > > Mr. Satterfield, I highly, highly recommend getting out there on the road. Yes, it's a little
    > > scary at first, but you will gain confidence and skill as you practice. You can do it!
    >
    > The trick, I find, is kind of like driving. You don't get into your car and drive right on an
    > Interstate with no preparation. You drive around the neighborhood. Then a bit further. Then a
    > little further still--until you're ready to go flat-out and long distances
    >
    > same on a bike; ride in your neighborhood street. imagine your'e a car with two wheels and a big,
    > 2-cylinder, Wheaties-fueled engine. Remember to look, signal, look, move.
    >
    > It can be fun.
    >
    > -Luigi eventually, you can take on the fun that is the Elephant & Castle roundabout!
    >
    >
    > >
    > > Warm Regards,
    > >
    > > Claire Petersky Home of the meditative cyclist: http://home.earthlink.net/~cpetersky/Welcome.htm
     
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