Author Topic: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!  (Read 6075 times)

jambongris

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #50 on: July 20, 2018, 01:41:29 PM »
So, did a 100 km race (103 technically) last weekend with a touch over 4000 ft of climbing, and completed the course in three hours and forty minutes . . . which was a time that I was happy with.  It wasn't that hot, only about 28 C (83 F) but was very humid and on the verge of rain for the whole ride, so nothing evaporated off of me.  There was enough sweat rolling off of me that it was like being in a thunderstorm.  (It did start to pour in the last 20 minutes, which finally broke the heat a bit).  I was sweating a ridiculous amount, and ended up drinking five 750 mL bottles over the course of the ride.  Then chugged another two bottles when I stopped.  And another one on the drive home.  All without needing to pee.  :P

The first 50 km were pretty fun, and I think that I went much too hard following some pretty fast guys.  I was dropped when things got hilly at about 60 km, and then ended up riding on my own for a lengthy chunk.  Cramps set in pretty bad at around 80 km, but I was able to stretch them out enough on the bike to keep going.  By about 90 km I was in rough shape and was just barely able to find and hold someone's wheel to limp my way over the finish line.

Notes from this event:
- I have no problems keeping up with people on the flat sections.
- I go WAY faster than everyone else on the descents.
- I go much slower than everyone else on the climbs.

Anyone know if there's maybe some sort of technique thing that I should train for the climbs, or is it just the fact that I weigh too much?

(Point of pride - more than 100 riders, and I was the only one on a steel frame bike.  :P  )

With that total time, given 4000 ft of climbing, I thought, "wow, your descents must have been blazing fast." (4000 ft climb is a lot). With regard to long, full-day,  grueling mountain bike climbs, I usually smoke most folks on the climbs, but get left behind on the descents (not so true on road rides). Since you are probably well informed on training techniques for climbing, I'd ask how much you weigh/height. I've noticed on other folks, having to lug up 10s of pounds of adipose tissue on climbs is never an advantage. Do you have the typical biker body-type?

It's pretty flat where I live, and all the climbing in the race was quite an eye opener to me.  My touring bike has a very wide wheel base, and it's fitted with larger tires (28 front, 32 rear).  It is incredibly stable and easy to control when descending.  Years of stretching my legs to crazy angles while teaching Taekwondo means that I can comfortably hold a very low position for extended periods of time too.  I think this combo really helps for going down hills fast.

Not really typical cyclist frame.  6', 191 lbs as of last weekend (I was 10 lbs lighter than that after the race when I got home.  :P).  In my defense, I've got a 32" waist, and do lift weights each week - it's not all fat.

I'm still learning about the nuts and bolts of bikes but this really jumped out at me. I hadn't realized that you could mix and match tire sizes on a bike like that.

According to Sheldon Brown a 32 tire is typically found on unicycles and novelty bicycles. Do you have it set up this way so it always feels like you're riding downhill?

GuitarStv

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #51 on: July 20, 2018, 02:15:37 PM »
Oh, not a 32 inch tire in diameter.

No, I mean 32mm wide.  I'm talking about standard road bike sized wheels, so 32x700C and 28X700C.  I guess that the rear of the bike is around 4 mm higher than the front with this setup, but it's not really noticeable.  What's noticeable is that the wider tire can be run at lower pressure and provides a lot more cushioning, and absorbs a lot more of the road buzz.

jambongris

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #52 on: July 20, 2018, 02:28:39 PM »
Oh, not a 32 inch tire in diameter.

No, I mean 32mm wide.  I'm talking about standard road bike sized wheels, so 32x700C and 28X700C.  I guess that the rear of the bike is around 4 mm higher than the front with this setup, but it's not really noticeable.  What's noticeable is that the wider tire can be run at lower pressure and provides a lot more cushioning, and absorbs a lot more of the road buzz.

That’s disappointing. I was really enjoying the mental picture of a bike whose rear tire was 4” taller than its front tire.

Rubic

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #53 on: July 20, 2018, 02:30:42 PM »
According to Sheldon Brown a 32 tire is typically found on unicycles and novelty bicycles. Do you have it set up this way so it always feels like you're riding downhill?

As GuitarStv just pointed out, Sheldon is referring to wheel diameter.  My avatar
is a picture of me riding a 36" unicycle.

Trivia:  Years ago I was in Boston for a bike ride.  I stopped by Sheldon's bike shop
(before he passed away) and received excellent advice about configuring an S&S coupled
touring bike.

GuitarStv

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #54 on: July 20, 2018, 02:41:56 PM »
Oh, not a 32 inch tire in diameter.

No, I mean 32mm wide.  I'm talking about standard road bike sized wheels, so 32x700C and 28X700C.  I guess that the rear of the bike is around 4 mm higher than the front with this setup, but it's not really noticeable.  What's noticeable is that the wider tire can be run at lower pressure and provides a lot more cushioning, and absorbs a lot more of the road buzz.

That’s disappointing. I was really enjoying the mental picture of a bike whose rear tire was 4” taller than its front tire.

If it makes you feel better, pro riders did use something like that as time trial bikes ages ago:



700C rear with a 650B front wheel for extra aggressive position.  Or something.  :P

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #55 on: July 20, 2018, 02:46:01 PM »
Just looking at that picture has thrown my back out!

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #56 on: July 20, 2018, 03:00:02 PM »
Oh, not a 32 inch tire in diameter.

No, I mean 32mm wide.  I'm talking about standard road bike sized wheels, so 32x700C and 28X700C.  I guess that the rear of the bike is around 4 mm higher than the front with this setup, but it's not really noticeable.  What's noticeable is that the wider tire can be run at lower pressure and provides a lot more cushioning, and absorbs a lot more of the road buzz.

That’s disappointing. I was really enjoying the mental picture of a bike whose rear tire was 4” taller than its front tire.

Chiming in to say that I assumed it was a difference in wheel diameter as well. I thought it was a bit funny, but I just figured it was a thing that people who ride racing bikes did that us normal bike riders wouldn't (for aero or optimal leg/arm/seat geometry or other reasons).

GuitarStv

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #57 on: July 20, 2018, 03:05:26 PM »
Just looking at that picture has thrown my back out!

Look at the rear cogs.  It must go all the way from an 11 to a 13 at the back.  Y'know.  For the hills.  :P

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #58 on: July 20, 2018, 03:40:11 PM »
Ah yes. The Alps, that bike, and a low gear of 53 - 13 would probably see my demise!

jambongris

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #59 on: July 20, 2018, 03:59:50 PM »
Oh, not a 32 inch tire in diameter.

No, I mean 32mm wide.  I'm talking about standard road bike sized wheels, so 32x700C and 28X700C.  I guess that the rear of the bike is around 4 mm higher than the front with this setup, but it's not really noticeable.  What's noticeable is that the wider tire can be run at lower pressure and provides a lot more cushioning, and absorbs a lot more of the road buzz.

That’s disappointing. I was really enjoying the mental picture of a bike whose rear tire was 4” taller than its front tire.

If it makes you feel better, pro riders did use something like that as time trial bikes ages ago:



700C rear with a 650B front wheel for extra aggressive position.  Or something.  :P

Glorious.

That’s exactly what I was picturing. I have to agree that it looks spectacularly uncomfortable though.

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #60 on: July 25, 2018, 12:07:20 PM »
What are folks' thoughts on tubeless and tire sealant?

Personally I love it, but mainly because it allows me to run real low pressures on dirt.  To me, its all about max traction riding trails.


Even so, I also run ghetto tubeless with sealant on my city bike.   Just late last night, I got a wire stuck in my tire, pulled it out, let the sealant ooze out and plug the tire.  Lost a few pounds of pressure, but it fully sealed and now its as if nothing ever happened.   I do carry a spare tube and hand pump, but it was awfully nice not to have to mess with installing a tube late at night in the city.

I haven't gotten around to tubeless on my road/skinny tire bike yet though.

GuitarStv

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #61 on: July 25, 2018, 01:03:37 PM »
I've never used tubeless, so don't really have an opinion on it.  Does the sealant dry out and need to be replaced on a regular basis?  It seems like tubeless road tires are still kinda hard to find for sale.

I do have an opinion on most modern "tubeless ready" road rims though . . . they are frigging terrible.  I've tried three now, and each one is extremely difficult to mount tires on.  I don't need any tools with any regular road rim I've tried when changing a tire, just roll the tire on/off with my thumb easily.  With each "tubeless ready" road rim I need at least two tire levers . . . and even then it's miserably tight and usually a swear inducing procedure to mount.

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #62 on: July 25, 2018, 01:15:09 PM »
I always think a difficult tyre installation is punishment for something terrible I must have done in a previous life. I have no experience of using tubeless but the use of sealant just seems a load of hassle to me so I haven’t been interested. I only really ride road and don’t seem to puncture much. Hope I haven’t cursed myself there.

Slee_stack

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #63 on: July 25, 2018, 01:23:10 PM »
Yes, sealant needs replenishing and it will dry out over time.  Its YMMV.

Generally, the hotter the climate, the more frequent the change/top-off.

Fortunately, tubeless stems usually have removable valve cores.  This allows sealant to be easily injected w/o having to break the tire bead mount.  Maintenance time is about 1 minute per wheel each time.

I typically see 90F+ summer days.  I add sealant 2-3X per year.

Tubeless specific rims can have 'hooks' on the edges making mounting/un-mounting more difficult.  They also tend to have deeper center-sections.  One trick to a tubeless setup is to squeeze the beads together and push the tire to the center of the rim.  This will give the tire more slack so you can pop a portion of the tire off the rim more easily.

Admittedly, I have zero experience with road wheels (skinny rims).  However, just about any rim can be setup tubeless (ie ghetto tubeless).  It involves cheap rim tape and your sealant of choice.  Most tires also work just fine.  Tires that have super thin walls don't tend to last as long though as there is usually more flex with the typically lower pressures run.

The biggest disadvantage to tubeless is the initial dry mounting.  Trying to hand-pump and seat one can be near impossible.  The trick to good seat is FAST air...high pressure injected really quick.  A compressor is a necessity in my book.  I suppose CO2 cartridges could work, but that sounds like a potentially pricey way.
« Last Edit: July 25, 2018, 01:25:54 PM by Slee_stack »

GuitarStv

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #64 on: July 25, 2018, 01:26:11 PM »
Yes, sealant needs replenishing and it will dry out over time.  Its YMMV.

Generally, the hotter the climate, the more frequent the change/top-off.

Fortunately, tubeless stems usually have removable valve cores.  This allows sealant to be easily injected w/o having to break the tire bead mount.  Maintenance time is about 1 minute per wheel each time.

I typically see 90F+ summer days.  I add sealant 2-3X per year.

So like . . . I assume that at some point you'll run out of empty tire if you keep adding sealant that keeps hardening.  Do you have to take the tire off every once and a while and scrape all the dried glue away?

Rubic

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #65 on: July 25, 2018, 02:33:55 PM »
I've never used tubeless, so don't really have an opinion on it.  Does the sealant dry out and need to be replaced on a regular basis?  It seems like tubeless road tires are still kinda hard to find for sale.

I'm a big fan of Jan Heine and a subscriber to his Bicycle Quarterly (also met him in
France in 2011).  Here's his advice about tubeless tires:

The Trouble with ‘Road Tubeless’
https://janheine.wordpress.com/2017/05/29/the-trouble-with-road-tubeless/

His review isn't all negative and he provides solid advice if you're going to roll
on tubeless tires.

SeaKayEl

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #66 on: July 25, 2018, 05:47:52 PM »
Love this thread and can learn a lot from you guys!!

I’ve commuted everyday since October (exceptions: under 0°F (-18°C) or a snow storm because people suck at driving).
I currently have only 1 bike, a 2009 Cannondale Bad Boy.
Since October, I’ve been introduced to longer rides (50ish miles / 80 km) and took on a goal of riding 50miles in all 50 states (5 completed so far: WA, ID, NY, VT, MA-this one was unintentional!).

I enjoy the longer rides just for the ride...I don’t care about hitting a certain time or speed...this may be why my current bike has worked out just fine for me on these rides.

That said...I’m looking for a hobby to fill some time and was thinking of building a road bike from the frame up.  Without experience on a road bike I don’t know my ideal preferences...BUT for the kind of riding I enjoy and will do this doesn’t concern me.  Is this thinking off-base?

As for hill prep: I used findhills.com to practice on.  During my hilly ride, I smoked the person I was with on the hills....she smoked me on the downhills and I kept up with her on the flats.

My go-to for my 50+ mile rides are having 1 bottle with a Nuun tab in it, fig newtons, M&M’s and sometimes I’ll bring a peanut butter & banana sandwich.

I look forward to reading some more tips and about everyone’s riding adventures!



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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #67 on: July 26, 2018, 07:50:57 AM »
I do have an opinion on most modern "tubeless ready" road rims though . . . they are frigging terrible.  I've tried three now, and each one is extremely difficult to mount tires on.  I don't need any tools with any regular road rim I've tried when changing a tire, just roll the tire on/off with my thumb easily.  With each "tubeless ready" road rim I need at least two tire levers . . . and even then it's miserably tight and usually a swear inducing procedure to mount.

I had that problem too, but I found out that with the tubeless ready rims, you need to push the bead of the tire towards the center of the rim, not leave it at the edge. It gives you that extra bit of stretch to get the tire on the rim. I'm using Conti GP4000s on Shimano Ultegra rims and also on a set of Reynolds carbon rims.

See video for tips:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jvvXrlAUUfU

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #68 on: July 26, 2018, 08:03:47 AM »
I do have an opinion on most modern "tubeless ready" road rims though . . . they are frigging terrible.  I've tried three now, and each one is extremely difficult to mount tires on.  I don't need any tools with any regular road rim I've tried when changing a tire, just roll the tire on/off with my thumb easily.  With each "tubeless ready" road rim I need at least two tire levers . . . and even then it's miserably tight and usually a swear inducing procedure to mount.

I had that problem too, but I found out that with the tubeless ready rims, you need to push the bead of the tire towards the center of the rim, not leave it at the edge. It gives you that extra bit of stretch to get the tire on the rim. I'm using Conti GP4000s on Shimano Ultegra rims and also on a set of Reynolds carbon rims.

See video for tips:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jvvXrlAUUfU


I put a set of unstretched Continental Ultra Sport IIs on Ultegra rims and it was not a pleasant experience.  Oh, I was able to mount the tires in each case eventually . . . but no amount of pushing the tire to the middle avoided the use of levers.  If you're able to do it without levers, I tip my hat to you sir (and suspect you've got some freakish thumbs of iron on you).

Dave1442397

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #69 on: July 26, 2018, 11:23:38 AM »
I do have an opinion on most modern "tubeless ready" road rims though . . . they are frigging terrible.  I've tried three now, and each one is extremely difficult to mount tires on.  I don't need any tools with any regular road rim I've tried when changing a tire, just roll the tire on/off with my thumb easily.  With each "tubeless ready" road rim I need at least two tire levers . . . and even then it's miserably tight and usually a swear inducing procedure to mount.

I had that problem too, but I found out that with the tubeless ready rims, you need to push the bead of the tire towards the center of the rim, not leave it at the edge. It gives you that extra bit of stretch to get the tire on the rim. I'm using Conti GP4000s on Shimano Ultegra rims and also on a set of Reynolds carbon rims.

See video for tips:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jvvXrlAUUfU


I put a set of unstretched Continental Ultra Sport IIs on Ultegra rims and it was not a pleasant experience.  Oh, I was able to mount the tires in each case eventually . . . but no amount of pushing the tire to the middle avoided the use of levers.  If you're able to do it without levers, I tip my hat to you sir (and suspect you've got some freakish thumbs of iron on you).

I usually still need the tire levers :) I've gotten the tire on without them a few times in the summer, when it's 100F outside and things are warm and stretchy, but that's about it. Even with the levers, I was having a hard time the first time I changed a tire on the Ultegras.

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #70 on: July 26, 2018, 11:39:15 AM »
I've never used tubeless, so don't really have an opinion on it.  Does the sealant dry out and need to be replaced on a regular basis?  It seems like tubeless road tires are still kinda hard to find for sale.

I'm a big fan of Jan Heine and a subscriber to his Bicycle Quarterly (also met him in
France in 2011).  Here's his advice about tubeless tires:

The Trouble with ‘Road Tubeless’
https://janheine.wordpress.com/2017/05/29/the-trouble-with-road-tubeless/

His review isn't all negative and he provides solid advice if you're going to roll
on tubeless tires.

Yawn Heine is full of shit and mostly uses his blog to sling his brand of historical reenactment bike parts
The reason he doesn't like tubeless is because his manufacturer didn't start making tires to tubeless spec until they were a decade+ behind the rest of the industry

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #71 on: July 30, 2018, 11:29:39 AM »
Yes, sealant needs replenishing and it will dry out over time.  Its YMMV.

Generally, the hotter the climate, the more frequent the change/top-off.

Fortunately, tubeless stems usually have removable valve cores.  This allows sealant to be easily injected w/o having to break the tire bead mount.  Maintenance time is about 1 minute per wheel each time.

I typically see 90F+ summer days.  I add sealant 2-3X per year.

So like . . . I assume that at some point you'll run out of empty tire if you keep adding sealant that keeps hardening.  Do you have to take the tire off every once and a while and scrape all the dried glue away?
Dried sealant is affectionately referred to as 'boogers'.  Perhaps on a small volume road tire, one could clog up a tire with boogers.

I've removed tires (broken spokes or other more serious wheel issues) and had very little build up in the tire....maybe a couple % by volume at most.

It would be pretty hard to fill up an entire tire with them.   I wear out or simply destroy my tires well in advance of that happening.

Maybe a long lasting skinny road tire would be more susceptible.

Slee_stack

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #72 on: July 30, 2018, 11:43:26 AM »
I've never used tubeless, so don't really have an opinion on it.  Does the sealant dry out and need to be replaced on a regular basis?  It seems like tubeless road tires are still kinda hard to find for sale.

I'm a big fan of Jan Heine and a subscriber to his Bicycle Quarterly (also met him in
France in 2011).  Here's his advice about tubeless tires:

The Trouble with ‘Road Tubeless’
https://janheine.wordpress.com/2017/05/29/the-trouble-with-road-tubeless/

His review isn't all negative and he provides solid advice if you're going to roll
on tubeless tires.

Thanks for the link.  That is exactly what I might have worried about road tubeless...high pressures causing burps (or bangs at those numbers!)

I run 45mm tires on my city bike at 40-45 psi.    The articles suggestion of 60 max on thinner tires doesn't seem crazy.

I guess I'll keep my tubes in my road bike for the time being...  I pump those to 100...

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #73 on: August 11, 2018, 01:34:24 PM »
Watermelon, the drops, and an accidental 150 km ride

So, given my obvious need to do better on the hills I carefully plotted out a new 130 km route to ride today . . . that is almost completely flat.  Only 1500 ft of climbing in the whole thing.  :P. In my defence, I told myself that today was going to be about pacing (and did manage to pace myself pretty well).

All was going well for the first 50-60 km or so, until I started hitting multiple road closures on the roads I had planned to ride.  Five of the roads that I'd mapped were closed for construction.  Of like 12 in total that I was going to be on.  Initially I was like, OK, I'll just go over a street and take the next one heading the same direction . . . Which worked well for the first few times, but eventually landed me on a weird winding road that confused the hell out of my internal compass.  Experimentation eventually landed me back on a path I recognized from previous rides but when all was said and done Google maps say I added an extra 20 km and 500 ft of climbing.  I managed to complete the ride in 5 hours though, so the pacing strategy worked really well.  (Helps that it was a beautiful sunny day with no wind that wasn't too hot as well.)

As I often do, I chopped up a watermelon and ate it until my tummy ached post ride.  Watermelon is the bomb.  It helps you rehydrate and cool down, it tastes awesome.  For the longest time I've kinda felt like it makes you feel better the next day too . . . which I attributed to the rehydration help.  After doing some sciency journal reading, it turns out there's something in watermelon that's supposed to reduce muscle soreness and speed recovery.  So eat watermelon.  It's good for you (like beets), but doesn't taste like shit (unlike beets)!

I attribute my improved speed on this ride to partly the lack of climbing, but also the fact that I spent probably 60-70% of my ride in the drops.  I have ridden with a lot of people over the years, and my observation is that most folks don't use their drops enough.  Sometimes it's because of fear (it feels different when you're steering and braking from the drops - although I'd argue that it's actually way better for both), sometimes it's because of lack of flexibility (stretch motherfuckers!), sometimes it's because of weird handlebar/brake lever angles (the guys who tilt their hoods up at big angles tend to not be able to properly reach the brake levers from the drops - making stuff kinda dangerous), of because the hoods are too low (if you can't comfortably sit in the drops, why do you even have a drop handlebar bike?  Get bullhorns or cut the drops off to save weight and improve aerodynamics.). All I can say is, if you're not regularly using the drops on your rides (at a minimum for descents) you are really missing out.

Peace out.  Time for a gin and tonic while reading comic books under the patio awning for the rest of the day.  If I get ambitious, the acoustic guitar will be joining me for some songwriting.

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #74 on: August 11, 2018, 01:55:48 PM »
That sounds like a good ride and ideal conditions. Annoying about the road closures. I hate that when I ride. It almost always means I have to go on roads with a lot more traffic than I would really like to ride on.

I tend to only use my drops when descending. Your post reminds me that I do need to work on this and utilise them more.

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #75 on: August 18, 2018, 05:09:20 PM »
It's harder going fast on a bike than going long distances.  I did 70 km in two hours today, and have been completely fried ever since.

Rubic

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #76 on: August 18, 2018, 05:25:52 PM »
It's harder going fast on a bike than going long distances.  I did 70 km in two hours today, and have been completely fried ever since.

That's the dirty secret of our business.

My hardest ride was sub-4 hours.  After talking to a guy afterwards,
his comment: "I'll never do it again."

 ;-)

Russ

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #77 on: August 20, 2018, 10:38:22 AM »
the one thing every long-distance "athlete" doesn't want you to know
what's harder, running a 5-hour marathon or a 5-minute mile?
But for some reason people think it's less impressive to pour your heart out for an hour on the track than it is to shuffle along for a whole afternoon

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #78 on: August 28, 2018, 05:31:23 AM »
Hey Stv, what do you recommend for your hands when winter riding with drop bars?

In winters past I've used thick gloves with my flat bar bike which worked great. I recently acquired a drop bar bike and it feels like braking/shifting may be impeded with thick gloves, especially from the hoods. I'm reluctant to buy bar mitts if at all possible...
« Last Edit: August 28, 2018, 05:33:31 AM by LD_TAndK »

GuitarStv

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #79 on: August 28, 2018, 08:38:22 AM »
Hey Stv, what do you recommend for your hands when winter riding with drop bars?

In winters past I've used thick gloves with my flat bar bike which worked great. I recently acquired a drop bar bike and it feels like braking/shifting may be impeded with thick gloves, especially from the hoods. I'm reluctant to buy bar mitts if at all possible...

I've found that softshell jogging gloves work pretty well for me (these exact ones are sold by the Costco near me every fall for about 15$ a pair - https://www.amazon.com/HEAD-Digital-Running-Sensatec-Compatible/dp/B00EKWV16Q).  I wear one pair from 10 to 2 C, and I add another pair (about two sizes larger) overtop from 1 to -5C.  YMMV - but my hands tend to stay pretty warm as long as I keep my torso and neck warm enough.

I only ride my road bike with STI shifters down to about -5 C.  I've found that needing more than the two pairs of gloves means that I can't use the Shimano Integrated shifters without getting the gloves caught in the shift mechanism . . . so when it gets really cold (and when the roads get really salty) I switch to my winter bike with bar end shifters.  I can wear heavy snowmobiling gloves or mitts if necessary and still easily brake/shift gears.

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #80 on: September 20, 2018, 08:22:02 AM »
Just looking at that picture has thrown my back out!

Look at the rear cogs.  It must go all the way from an 11 to a 13 at the back.  Y'know.  For the hills.  :P

Speaking of crazy gearing configurations, this thread seemed like the best place to share this:

https://www.cbc.ca/radio/asithappens/how-this-cyclist-hit-296-km-h-to-shatter-a-land-speed-world-record

Makes my palms sweat just watching it.

There's also a neat article here about what went into building the bike:

https://www.bicycling.com/bikes-gear/a23305843/what-went-into-creating-this-record-breaking-bike/

Quote
Lochmiller then used a custom-engineered mount for a reduction gear that allowed a reasonable cadence at such high speeds. Mueller used a 60-tooth front chainring going to a 13-tooth cog on a Jackshaft that was supplied by da Vinci. The Jackshaft transferred to another 60-tooth chainring going to a 12-tooth cog on the rear wheel. This combination yielded the equivalent of a 204x11 road gear without the need for a chainring that would have scraped the ground, which would have been the case with a traditional chainring-cog drivetrain! This top gear was more than four times larger than the 52x11, which is the biggest gear on a standard road bike.

GuitarStv

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #81 on: September 20, 2018, 09:25:24 AM »
That's some crazy ass gearing, and pretty ballsy to do . . . if you screw up the drafting you're going to be hit by some pretty wild winds going 300 km/h and are almost certainly going to crash.



Unlike in Game of Thrones, winter is rapidly coming so it's probably time to discuss:


CLOTHING

Long ride clothing is tricky when it starts to get cold.  I can get away wearing a lot less stuff on a 40 minute commute to work than I can on a 4 hr ride at freezing.  The other problem is that you can feel perfectly fine for the first while and then start to freeze your balls off as what you're wearing soaks through with sweat.  GuitarStv's long ride outfits guide:

21+
- Jersey
- Shorts
- Sweat band
- Fingerless gloves
- Light socks

20 to 16
- Jersey
- Undershirt
- Light Arm Warmers
- Shorts
- Fingerless gloves
- Light socks

16 to 10:
- light skullcap or headband that covers ears
- Jersey
- Undershirt
- Windproof Gilet
- Heavy Arm Warmers
- Shorts
- Light Leg Warmers
- Fingerless gloves
- Light socks

10 to 5:
- light skullcap or headband that covers ears
- Buff for neck/face
- Long sleeve jersey
- Undershirt
- Windproof Gilet
- Shorts
- Heavy Leg Warmers
- Long fingered gloves
- Light socks

5 to -2
- light skullcap or headband that covers ears
- Buff for neck/face
- Long sleeve jersey
- Long sleeve undershirt
- Windproof jacket
- Insulated bib tights
- Two pairs of Long fingered gloves
- Insulated toe covers
- Light socks

-2 to -10
- heavy skullcap
- Buff for neck/face
- Long sleeve jersey
- Heavy long sleeve undershirt
- Windproof jacket
- Insulated bib tights with heavy leg warmers under them
- Two pairs of Long fingered gloves
- Insulated waterproof overshoes

-10 to -20
- heavy skullcap
- Buff for neck/face
- Heavy long sleeve fleece
- Heavy long sleeve undershirt
- Windproof jacket
- Insulated bib tights
- Heavy fleece tights
- Two pairs of Long fingered gloves
- Insulated waterproof overshoes w/medium weight wool socks if using clipless pedals
- Waterproof shoes w/ two pairs of heavy weight wool socks if using studded flat pedals

Below -20
-Nope (my glasses tend to ice up and can't be cleared at this temperature, which is too dangerous for me.)


If it's raining or wet snow, I'll probably grab some stuff from the next level down to stay warm.

big_slacker

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #82 on: September 20, 2018, 11:33:07 AM »
Didn't see this before! Although the thread is roadie based and I'm a mountain biker I've got some general stuff to add:


1. Fueling wise I'm a huge fan of Tailwind nutrition. I did a 12 hour last year using it as my primary fuel source and a 6 hour just a few weeks ago with it. I don't use ONLY liquid drink like they say you can and some do. I carry some small amount of solid food, like fig newtons or costco nut bars. But the vast majority of my calories on these rides is Tailwind. I usually go 3 scoops (300 calories) per hour. I drink from a 3 liter camelbak and usually around 22oz per hour, so I can easily calculate how many scoops to put in to start. Then I have the rest pre-portioned in double ziplocs that I dump in when I re-fill water.

2. Route planning is important. For instance with the above fueling I have a 3 liter capacity in my pack but that's a lot of weight to carry if there is going to be a stream or lake to fill up in halfway through the ride. Obviously it's not just distance that matters but also how much climbing/descending there is and how gnarly the terrain is. You migth ride 20 miles in 2 hours and the next 20 takes 4 hours.

3. Tools, it goes without saying you'll need to take what you might need to at least limp back to a trailhead/bailout spot if something breaks. I carry a nice crank bros bike multitool, tire levers, spare tubes (1 or 2 depending on how remote the ride is), spare chain masterlinks, spare tubeless stems, first aid kit, tire pump and shock pump. And zip ties! Edit: I also carry a sawyer mini-filter, because giardia sucks.

4. Training, I'm a big fan of getting in consistent training with a HR and  power meter because I have a real tendency to push too hard during training and riding. In endurance riding this is dumb, you need to go long and being a tuffguy is counterproductive. I love Zwift on my spin bike. It has structured training programs built in, or you can just do a ride from another plan and hold the power, time or HR you know you need to. The point is, it's on the screen the whole time you train, and I can do these rides regardless of the weather or my sometimes hectic schedule.

5. Mental training. This IMO is a massive factor that should not be overlooked. ultra distance/time events always boil down to being tough, doing things your body doesn't like, things going wrong, the voice inside your head telling you to bail and so on. I'm a big fan of David Goggins' as well as Rich Roll. They have different approaches. Goggins is about being hard, introducing discomfort into daily life and ramping it up to train yourself into being used to it. Roll is more about meditative style, being in the moment, accepting where you're and doing your best to make that next tree, that next rock and so on till you're through it. I use a blend of both and feel like my mental game is really on point, if anything I lag behind on the physical training, haha!
« Last Edit: September 20, 2018, 11:36:49 AM by big_slacker »

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #83 on: September 20, 2018, 11:35:15 AM »
Long ride clothing is tricky when it starts to get cold.

Layers help, of course.  For distance rides I have front and rear bags which
can carry clothing.

On a typical morning, when below freezing, I'd be wearing most of my layers,
then shedding as I warmed up, then shedding again as the day warmed up,
especially if the sun was out.

If the ride continued into the evening, start re-layering.

For "short" long rides -- less than 4-5 hours -- I'd put hot water in
insulated water bottles to slow down freezing.  For longer rides, I'd
wear a Camelbak under my jacket and blow the water from the sip
tube back into the bladder after drinking.

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #84 on: October 09, 2018, 01:55:16 PM »
Another (recently reinforced) tip:

Don't ignore unusual sounds or new behaviors that your bike makes.

I recently had a chain drop on my bike.  Hmm weird...that hasn't happened in years and I even have a clutch derailleur and NW chainring...that should be nearly impossible.

Then a strange catching/skip sound started.  Again...relatively new derailleur and cassette...no wear...what the hecks going on?  Inspect everything closely.  Hmm.. Maybe just a little extra clean and lube.

Ride the next day and a high squeal starts coming from the back wheel.  Fortunately pretty close to the parking lot.

Bearing in the rear hub failed completely.  It obviously had been failing over the past few rides and causing the freewheel to start sticking more and more...eventually resulting in a minor backpedal being able to result in a dropped chain.

So now I have new bearings on order.  Admittedly, they lasted awhile...probably 8k or so through dirt, and streams, and mud.  I thought occasional cleaning and re-greasing was good enough. 

Eventually all mechanical stuff fails though.   When you experience strange behavior or hear odd noises, it might be good to think about what components could be going end-of-life on you.
« Last Edit: October 09, 2018, 01:57:15 PM by Slee_stack »

GuitarStv

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #85 on: October 09, 2018, 02:09:46 PM »
I'm sorry to say that your bearing races are likely fucked if you're using loose bearings.  Strip the grease out in preparation of repacking the hub and check to be sure, but every hub that I've cracked balls in has been pretty much toast due to pitting and marks on the cups.  You can repack them and put in new balls, but they'll wear very fast and cause problems.  (If it's just the cones you can use some fine sandpaper and grind out the damage sometimes - just put the axle with the cone on a handheld drill and go to town . . . if it's the cups there's not much you can do.)

Because of the salt and crud, my winter bike just eats rear hubs if I'm not very careful.  I keep a pretty regular bearing replacement schedule and pay a lot of attention to the sound the wheel makes when spun.

Slee_stack

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #86 on: October 11, 2018, 11:44:51 AM »
I'm sorry to say that your bearing races are likely fucked if you're using loose bearings.  Strip the grease out in preparation of repacking the hub and check to be sure, but every hub that I've cracked balls in has been pretty much toast due to pitting and marks on the cups.  You can repack them and put in new balls, but they'll wear very fast and cause problems.  (If it's just the cones you can use some fine sandpaper and grind out the damage sometimes - just put the axle with the cone on a handheld drill and go to town . . . if it's the cups there's not much you can do.)

Because of the salt and crud, my winter bike just eats rear hubs if I'm not very careful.  I keep a pretty regular bearing replacement schedule and pay a lot of attention to the sound the wheel makes when spun.
I agree.  Its possible I could have also damaged the ratchet wheel and/or cassette barrel.  I'll take a close look.  Hopefully the axle and remainder of the hub is fine. 

My rear hub uses 5 bearing cartridges.  The inboard cartridge of the cassette barrel is the one that failed.

GuitarStv

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #87 on: October 11, 2018, 11:51:31 AM »
It should be possible to remove and replace the freewheel if it's damaged although you'll probably need a 12, 13, or 14mm allen key . . . which you'll never use for anything else for the rest of your life - so maybe go to a bike shop for this.  I take mine off semi-regularly in a futile attempt to regrease and extend the life of wheels used in winter slush.  :P

hadabeardonce

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #88 on: November 05, 2018, 04:40:00 PM »
4. Training, I'm a big fan of getting in consistent training with a HR and  power meter because I have a real tendency to push too hard during training and riding. In endurance riding this is dumb, you need to go long and being a tuffguy is counterproductive. I love Zwift on my spin bike. It has structured training programs built in, or you can just do a ride from another plan and hold the power, time or HR you know you need to. The point is, it's on the screen the whole time you train, and I can do these rides regardless of the weather or my sometimes hectic schedule.
What kind of setup are you using? My wife and I are testing out Zwift to see if it really gets us to ride more, but it's a chore on our old rim drive trainer: http://www.minoura.jp/english/trainer-e/rim-e/rda80-e.html 30mins at 100w was as much as I could handle. Even with a pretty big cheap fan blowing at me I was sweating bullets. It's a lot different than really riding on a road with traffic lights and elevation changes. You'll see some of my Zwift attempts in The Mustachians Strava group.

Being on the trainer allowed me pay more attention to my pedaling. Monitoring cadence is easy, but listening to uneven pedaling effort got me to raise my saddle position a bit, which seems to help overall riding. It was a good excuse to have my wife admire my posterior too. I can't depend on motorists to tell me if my hips are rocking... even though I know they are all silently judging me.

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #89 on: November 06, 2018, 12:05:08 PM »
Ahhhhh how did I miss this thread? Greatly enjoyed reading it through.

I'm a fledgling rando but my favorite riding is destination minded solo trips, like 150k to a campsite, or 100k from Milwaukee to Sheboygan to see a friend's band, that sort of thing. I may end up liking my sleep too much to ever complete the 1200k Coulee Challenge, but we'll see as my overall riding improves a little year by year :)

My pretty-good-at-everything-excels-at-nothing whip is a Surly Straggler with a dynamo hub. I've used it city tooling about, brevets, (my first) gravel race, winter commuting, joyrides through mud, and it just keeps on rolling.

I know this is old, but it's the time of year to think about this type of thing:
Hey Stv, what do you recommend for your hands when winter riding with drop bars?

In winters past I've used thick gloves with my flat bar bike which worked great. I recently acquired a drop bar bike and it feels like braking/shifting may be impeded with thick gloves, especially from the hoods. I'm reluctant to buy bar mitts if at all possible...

I use nordic skiing gloves on my drop bar bike - instead of being split in the middle like lobster claws, they're split between the forefinger and middle finger. This allows me to brake and shift from my 'normal' hand position easily enough, although when it's below 0F I tend to use my whole (wimpy) hand in the drops for both.

big_slacker

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #90 on: November 08, 2018, 08:09:43 AM »
4. Training, I'm a big fan of getting in consistent training with a HR and  power meter because I have a real tendency to push too hard during training and riding. In endurance riding this is dumb, you need to go long and being a tuffguy is counterproductive. I love Zwift on my spin bike. It has structured training programs built in, or you can just do a ride from another plan and hold the power, time or HR you know you need to. The point is, it's on the screen the whole time you train, and I can do these rides regardless of the weather or my sometimes hectic schedule.
What kind of setup are you using? My wife and I are testing out Zwift to see if it really gets us to ride more, but it's a chore on our old rim drive trainer: http://www.minoura.jp/english/trainer-e/rim-e/rda80-e.html 30mins at 100w was as much as I could handle. Even with a pretty big cheap fan blowing at me I was sweating bullets. It's a lot different than really riding on a road with traffic lights and elevation changes. You'll see some of my Zwift attempts in The Mustachians Strava group.

Being on the trainer allowed me pay more attention to my pedaling. Monitoring cadence is easy, but listening to uneven pedaling effort got me to raise my saddle position a bit, which seems to help overall riding. It was a good excuse to have my wife admire my posterior too. I can't depend on motorists to tell me if my hips are rocking... even though I know they are all silently judging me.

Since I already had the spin bike I bought the Assioma Uno power meter pedal. Really it's one pedal with a power meter and the software normalizes the power. This along with the bluetooth dongle on the end of a USB extender cable to get the BT receiver close to the pedals. I hook my laptop up to a 42 inch TV (that I got for free) and have a fan pointed at me when riding (also got that for free, haha!).

I later got a fancy smart trainer for free (you might be seeing a theme) and threw a trainer tire on my CX bike. I THOUGHT this would be cool as the smart trainer adjusts the tension when the game sends you up a hill and you have to shift down just like you would on a real ride. However after riding like this for a while I find I prefer the solid nature and simplicity of the spin bike, and don't like extra wear/tear on my CX frame and wheelset so I switched back.

FWIW the Assioma pedal is pretty $$ at $500 and zwift is $15/month. All worth it, much more for the scheduling aspect than weather which I'm not so bothered by here where it's just wet but not usually cold. I have a wife that works a semi-regular schedule (same days but could be AM or PM) and I have 2 young kids. So for me to be able to get in an hour or two pretty much any time I'm at home, even with the kiddos, is GOLD.

GuitarStv

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #91 on: November 08, 2018, 08:31:57 AM »
I got a STAC Zero trainer with a power meter a year and a half ago, mostly for my wife to use because she doesn't like to go outside during the winter months at all.  It uses magnets to slow your wheel spinning, so there's nothing actually touching your tire or wheel, and it's very quiet (the main reason I wanted to get it).  I really like how quiet it is, and really like how nothing touches your wheel . . . so the idea is that the only thing that will cause wear is your chain/chainrings.

My one complaint is that I find it hard to get enough power out of the trainer though for doing sprint workouts.  If you're generating anything around 1600 watts stuff kinda flexes a bit and your rim starts to physically contact the magnets, and the whole bike/trainer kinda move around a lot.  I've got them on a rubber mat, and then have to put several 25lb plates at the front and back of the trainer to keep it in place.  It works perfectly for longer, low power endurance type efforts though.

I have to put a towel over my bars during a session because I sweat so much (even in our cooler basement and with a fan directly on me the whole time).  I don't think that frame flex is significant enough to be a concern on a trainer.

My wife and I don't do Zwift, but GCN has a bunch of decent training videos for free on youtube that we use (although most of them are too short, so you need to do two in a row.)

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #92 on: November 08, 2018, 11:30:49 AM »
4. Training, I'm a big fan of getting in consistent training with a HR and  power meter because I have a real tendency to push too hard during training and riding. In endurance riding this is dumb, you need to go long and being a tuffguy is counterproductive. I love Zwift on my spin bike. It has structured training programs built in, or you can just do a ride from another plan and hold the power, time or HR you know you need to. The point is, it's on the screen the whole time you train, and I can do these rides regardless of the weather or my sometimes hectic schedule.
What kind of setup are you using? My wife and I are testing out Zwift to see if it really gets us to ride more, but it's a chore on our old rim drive trainer: http://www.minoura.jp/english/trainer-e/rim-e/rda80-e.html 30mins at 100w was as much as I could handle. Even with a pretty big cheap fan blowing at me I was sweating bullets. It's a lot different than really riding on a road with traffic lights and elevation changes. You'll see some of my Zwift attempts in The Mustachians Strava group.

Being on the trainer allowed me pay more attention to my pedaling. Monitoring cadence is easy, but listening to uneven pedaling effort got me to raise my saddle position a bit, which seems to help overall riding. It was a good excuse to have my wife admire my posterior too. I can't depend on motorists to tell me if my hips are rocking... even though I know they are all silently judging me.

I trained indoors for the first time this year, two days a week, Jan thru April. My local bike shop set up a row of Computrainers connected to https://ergvideo.com/
I wasn't sure how much it would help until the start of the outdoor season, when I felt better than ever before for that time of year. I was faster and stronger all summer, so I think it was a very beneficial program.

Rather than spend $400 at the store every year, I think I'm going to buy a Wahoo Kickr next week (LBS is having a sale). I'm planning on using Zwift and maybe Trainer Road too. The cheapest way to get things up and running seems to be with a 32Gb Apple 4k TV, which can send Zwift to a TV.

I found this video to be very helpful in deciding how to set things up - https://youtu.be/6KVkjmeW6AM

GuitarStv

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #93 on: November 08, 2018, 11:49:00 AM »
You probably don't need an Apple thingie.  Most televisions these days will take HDMI (or VGA) straight from your PC.

big_slacker

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #94 on: November 08, 2018, 12:48:33 PM »
You probably don't need an Apple thingie.  Most televisions these days will take HDMI (or VGA) straight from your PC.

Yup, you only need some kind of input on the TV, although I'm guessing maybe he wants to run zwift on a stand next to the bike for ride controls and doesn't want a cable running to the TV or something? Let me save you the trouble, run zwift next to the TV cabled up, no worries about lag or wireless display issues. For controls (Ride On! Using the random bonus boost thingees, selecting which way to go at a fork, etc.) use the zwift Companion app on your phone which you have mount to your bars for the cost of a cheapy mount.

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #95 on: November 09, 2018, 10:25:35 AM »
Thanks for the info and feedback.

Current Zwift Techie Setup:
Laptop Running Zwift <-> Wireless Network <-> Android Phone w/Zwift Companion App <-> Wahoo RPM Cadence and Speed Sensors

I didn't have to pick up an ANT+ receiver by going with the little Wahoo sensors. Runs well enough for Zwift and the cadence sensor also connects directly with my phone for Strava. I can hook up the laptop to the TV or an external monitor, so it's all good. The only thing I had to buy that I wouldn't have normally was the Wahoo stuff.

Commuting at night hasn't been bad so far, so I'll still be outdoors throughout the year, but the indoor setup is nice for adding on miles to my routine.

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #96 on: November 09, 2018, 11:01:47 AM »
You probably don't need an Apple thingie.  Most televisions these days will take HDMI (or VGA) straight from your PC.

Yes, but my PC will be three floors away from the trainer :)  I'd rather not buy another PC/laptop just for Zwift, so I think Apple TV is a good solution.

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #97 on: November 09, 2018, 01:30:42 PM »
I'd like to take this thread in a different direction. For LOOONG rides, my real problem/wall is fatigue. Beyond a certain # of total WATTs, my legs just wont produce.

Maybe the simple answer is I need more training to do those ironman type rides? Ensuring that water and glucose are not the limiting elements contributing to my fatigue/cramping, what can I do other than not attempt these type of rides? The last one for example, was an all day mountain bike ride (~6 hours) with >4K feet of climbing between all the ups and downs.

Would loading muscle glycogen in the 48hr prior to such a ride help me out here? Am I engaging in too much anaerobic effort where picking routes with more gently inclines would keep me in a more aerobic zone? Or am I just taking on too much at one time?

Any thoughts are appreciated!

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #98 on: November 09, 2018, 01:50:47 PM »
I got a STAC Zero trainer with a power meter a year and a half ago, mostly for my wife to use because she doesn't like to go outside during the winter months at all.  It uses magnets to slow your wheel spinning, so there's nothing actually touching your tire or wheel, and it's very quiet (the main reason I wanted to get it).  I really like how quiet it is, and really like how nothing touches your wheel . . . so the idea is that the only thing that will cause wear is your chain/chainrings.

Thanks for mentioning this.  I recently moved into a second floor apartment for the first time in my life and am worried about my traditional/old trainer bothering my downstairs neighbor.  Do you think there would still be vibration noise from the STAC that would bother someone downstairs?  Do you feel like it's worth the price?  (I mean, ouch.) 

GuitarStv

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Re: GuitarStv's long bike ride tips!
« Reply #99 on: November 09, 2018, 02:17:08 PM »
I got a STAC Zero trainer with a power meter a year and a half ago, mostly for my wife to use because she doesn't like to go outside during the winter months at all.  It uses magnets to slow your wheel spinning, so there's nothing actually touching your tire or wheel, and it's very quiet (the main reason I wanted to get it).  I really like how quiet it is, and really like how nothing touches your wheel . . . so the idea is that the only thing that will cause wear is your chain/chainrings.

Thanks for mentioning this.  I recently moved into a second floor apartment for the first time in my life and am worried about my traditional/old trainer bothering my downstairs neighbor.  Do you think there would still be vibration noise from the STAC that would bother someone downstairs?  Do you feel like it's worth the price?  (I mean, ouch.)

Noise was a really big consideration for me because my wife and I use the trainer almost exclusively after our light sleeping son has gone to bed.

If you're really huffing it while sprinting, the trainer can slide/move around a bit which would make noise.  With a rubber mat under the bike, there's effectively no vibration at all though (just the vibration from the bearings in your rear hub).  The only noise you'll hear is your drivetrain, which is mostly higher frequency sound that doesn't carry through walls.  If you have a bike stand, put your bike on that and then turn the cranks a bit . . . that's the volume and level of vibration you get.