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So, money be damned. I bought a bike. I found a bike close to the one I wanted, but way cheaper. I'll have to partially assemble it, which means knocking the rust off my bike mechanic skills, but I'm confident I'll be able to do it. Anyway, I got this bike. It's a Raleigh Clubman. It's got a steel frame, but was only 2 lbs heavier than the alloy, so no biggie there. I did not pay the $799 list price for it. I paid $445 for it brand new. I looked up some reviews and the disc brakes are fine, but the pads suck, so I'm going to just replace them with some Kool Stop pads while I'm assembling it. At this price point, I think I did pretty damn good! I plan to put it together this weekend and be going on some short rides next week and then riding every morning for exercise as well as working some rides into my work week. If I don't have client meetings, there is no reason I can't ride it to the "office" (we call the Whole Foods bar our office because we don't have one - haha!). I'm really excited, but feel a little selfish. The ONLY downside to buying it was that we could use the money. But I can find money elsewhere. I really should do this. 

So glad to get back into it! I won't be selling this one. 
 

Screen Shot 2018-02-08 at 12.16.05 PM.png

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Way to go, what deal! Money well spent, a few bucks now for a healthy forever.

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Excited for you!!!

just saw an ad for this...encouraging people to bike

https://peopleforbikes.org

Edited by CheeringCJ

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Thanks @AustinJ and @CheeringCJ! I don't know if you could tell from me blabbing on other posts, but I was suuuuuuper sad about not having a bike. There are two types of exercise I actually like to do: cycling and roller skating. Roller skating will require a bit of work on my knees before I can get back into that, but cycling is absolutely doable. I hadn't ridden in a couple of years mainly due to my stomach fat making it difficult for me to lean over (I always ride with dropped bars - if I ride upright everything hurts and I hate it). I had a lot of visceral belly fat that made it hard to ride without my knees pointing outward - which is VERY BAD. I got very very out of shape and when I tried to ride eventually, it didn't go well. I wound up selling my Salsa Vaya to fund medical bills. :( I had planned to get a new one when our tax refund got in, but our refund is not great this year. I decided to do it anyway, though. Fingers crossed that it doesn't put us in the poor house. But I did opt to buy it up front rather than on credit, which I'm glad about. Done deal. :) 

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4 hours ago, Cardamom77 said:

cycling and roller skating

I hear you on both of these. Exercise that's fun is so much better. Get on that bike and ride! :) 

 

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glad you love it so much.....next week you will be out there biking!!! Have FUN!!!

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Starting to build it tonight! I had to go buy some grease for the pedals and seatpost, but I should be good to go now. It's been a while since I've put any bike stuff together, so I'm both excited and a little nervous. But I should be able to handle it. The hardest parts are adjusting the derailleurs and brakes. 

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Meet Mildred! Millie for short. Those fenders are coming off though. I forgot I hate them. They’re cute, but if they’re not juuuuust right, they rub the tires. 

79682A07-118D-42C6-BA31-0E5C6460B0A2.jpeg

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Welcome, Millie.....now get to work with our Cardamom and whip her into shape! ;) 

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Fenders are off this morning. I'm going to put her on the trainer later this afternoon and see how that is before I go outside on her. My former bike had bar end shifters and this one has brifters, so it's a new shifting situation and I want to make sure I have the hang of it before trying to ride on the street. Excited! 

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I think you'll find the shifters on the brake stems pretty handy - once you get used to them it is hard to go back to the bar end shifters! 

It's funny you are pulling your fenders off... I'm going to buy some fenders this weekend for my bike. The weather has finally gotten above freezing here and the road is beginning to call to me....

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2 hours ago, BurgundyBoy said:

I think you'll find the shifters on the brake stems pretty handy - once you get used to them it is hard to go back to the bar end shifters! 

It's funny you are pulling your fenders off... I'm going to buy some fenders this weekend for my bike. The weather has finally gotten above freezing here and the road is beginning to call to me....

Yeah, I think I'll prefer them to the bar-ends. I just need to get the hang of them!

I HATE fenders. I will probably put some different tires on this bike soon and the clearance wasn't great on these fenders - especially given that the front one was already rubbing on the tire. They're just too finicky. I don't mind getting some mud on me. When I used my bike to commute, I always wiped down and changed clothes anyway, so it was no biggie. 

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On 2/16/2018 at 1:46 PM, Cardamom77 said:

Yeah, I think I'll prefer them to the bar-ends. I just need to get the hang of them!

I HATE fenders. I will probably put some different tires on this bike soon and the clearance wasn't great on these fenders - especially given that the front one was already rubbing on the tire. They're just too finicky. I don't mind getting some mud on me. When I used my bike to commute, I always wiped down and changed clothes anyway, so it was no biggie. 

I have to laugh at myself. I bought this wonderful bike a few years ago with very wide front and rear forks which allow me to ride with larger tires - now have a set of Schwalbe 32Cs on my bike, which are heavy and essentially puncture-proof tires, which is why I am running them.  But here in Boston I find a long ride in wet weather -->> I get caked in muck. And my super-duper-cool bike does not have eyelets for fenders, so will have to strap on fenders. And I know they are aerodynamic drag. But I weigh so much less now that when I ride I am a gazillion miles faster than I used to be!

We just got 5" of snow at my house. Not quite time for cycling yet...

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Looks fun.

Lol, when I started riding a bike again I had a Huffy and could not get the kickstand up so I could only make left hand turns but that was ok because 1 or two trips around the block was as much as I could do.  I did a little more everyday until I was barely using mycar. I got the upper body and core strength up and learned how to get the muscles working together. If anyone is discouraged by the bottom pain work on your arms.

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My bike is ready to ride! Took long enough, but I decided I'd forgo spending any money on coffee out for the month and got a tune-up instead. I'm going to throw it on the trainer tonight to get the hang of it, then take her for a spin tomorrow evening. If I'm feeling like I can do it, I may ride my bike to the homeless day center that I work at on Thursdays, but it may be next week before I do that. We'll see how it feels. This bike is very different than my last bike, so it may take a little getting used to. The bars are dropped a little more aggressively and the tires are slicks instead of gravel tires, so I'm not sure how I'll do at first. It's been literally years since I've ridden - and I was about 100 lbs heavier. Everything will feel different. 

I'm excited though! 

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14 hours ago, Cardamom77 said:

My bike is ready to ride! Took long enough, but I decided I'd forgo spending any money on coffee out for the month and got a tune-up instead. I'm going to throw it on the trainer tonight to get the hang of it, then take her for a spin tomorrow evening. If I'm feeling like I can do it, I may ride my bike to the homeless day center that I work at on Thursdays, but it may be next week before I do that. We'll see how it feels. This bike is very different than my last bike, so it may take a little getting used to. The bars are dropped a little more aggressively and the tires are slicks instead of gravel tires, so I'm not sure how I'll do at first. It's been literally years since I've ridden - and I was about 100 lbs heavier. Everything will feel different. 

I'm excited though! 

How did it go? 

Do like the "shifters on the brake" setup - ... With the same kind of handlebars as you have, there are lots of positions for your hands during a long ride. Much better than the limited number of positions one has with a straight bar. re: the slick tires, they may actually have a bigger and better road contact patch, and performance, than knobby tires unless you are actually riding on gravel!  Curious as to your impression.

We finally got into good cycling weather here in Boston, and with the early morning light I should be out and about for early morning rides ... but I overdid it four weeks ago, I rode over 50 miles without bothering to stretch my muscles or anything, and I pulled my left Achilles' tendon. Still a bit sore there now but able to do 15 mile rides at a slow pace every few days. Foolish of me to have done so many miles without any warmups!

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@BurgundyBoy It went well! I just took a couple of little spins around the neighborhood to make sure everything is in working order and feels ok and I'll ride to work on Thursday. I don't have a lot of spare time for riding just to ride, so I'm planning to ride to the day center Tuesdays and Thursdays and go from there. 

The bars aren't a problem at all. The ride was really comfortable. I haven't had a straight bar bike in MANY years, I much prefer drop bars. The shifting is going to take some getting used to, though. I'm still so confused about it! With bar end shifters, you moved a lever up or down and that was easier for me to remember. With these brifters, you either hit one lever or two and I can't remember which goes lower and which higher. I'll get the hang of it, though. On my ride today, I got in front of the mail truck and totally screwed up shifting and couldn't pick up speed, so that was a little embarrassing, but OH WELL. Haha! The tires are fine. We did more combination type riding when I had my Vaya (mostly paved trail, but we would go off into the mountain bike trails at the park - I live in a bike obsessed city), but I'll pretty much stay on paved trails/roads now, so I don't think it will be an issue. 

Sorry about your injury! Hope it's feeling better now. It will probably be a while before I'll even be able to do 15 miles again, but I'm looking forward to getting back into it. :)

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Oh, and I'm also going to try to put more time in on the bike trainer in the evenings. I can ride while I watch TV, so there's no reason not to if I'm going to be watching TV anyway. :)

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Hey,  @Cardamom77, glad to hear you’re out and about on your bike finally!  Awesome way to burn some extra calories!  And way to look TOTALLY AWESOME in your new profile pic!  You are SO close to your goal weight!!! YEAH YOU!  (I am at your goal weight....meet me here!) :) At that weight I am a 12/14 and size Lg top and I would be fine to stay this way forever. That being said, I am going to try to go down more but I am prettty pleased to be where I am.  

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On 6/27/2018 at 9:49 AM, BurgundyBoy said:

We finally got into good cycling weather here in Boston, and with the early morning light I should be out and about for early morning rides ... but I overdid it four weeks ago, I rode over 50 miles without bothering to stretch my muscles or anything, and I pulled my left Achilles' tendon. Still a bit sore there now but able to do 15 mile rides at a slow pace every few days. Foolish of me to have done so many miles without any warmups!

Ouch....lesson learned, though, right?  Bet you never ride w/o a warmup again!  I hate when you get injured and then can’t workout, that add such insult to the injury!  Glad you are able to do a slower pace for now at least.  You’ll be back to 50 miles soon, but with a stretch first for sure ;) 

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I DID IT!!! I only rode a total of about 6 miles today, but I did it in 91 degree heat (ok, it was only 78 degrees this morning, so I did HALF in the high heat), so I feel pretty proud of that! Now I want to ride everywhere! @BurgundyBoy, you are so right about the tire road contact. I love these tires! I still am getting the hang of shifting, though. My old bike had a front derailleur that you dialed in (as opposed to indexed gears), so I'm struggling with figuring out how to make that work. But I'll get it. I had to walk up half a hill, though, when I couldn't get the thing to shift. :(

Thanks for your words of encouragement, @CheeringCJ ! I'm super happy to be back in the saddle. :)

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Great biking, @Cardamom77!  Be careful, you're turning into a FITNESS FREAK!! Biking, roller derby, yoga, this woman is intense! Who is she? Bet she was no where to be found.last year, yet here she is in all.hee fitness fanitical glory!!!  Keep it up, girlie!!!

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@CheeringCJ Well, I "gained" (not really, it was just a fluctuation) 3 lbs over a couple of days, so that kicked me into high gear. LOL

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20 hours ago, Cardamom77 said:

I DID IT!!! I only rode a total of about 6 miles today, but I did it in 91 degree heat (ok, it was only 78 degrees this morning, so I did HALF in the high heat), so I feel pretty proud of that! Now I want to ride everywhere! @BurgundyBoy, you are so right about the tire road contact. I love these tires! I still am getting the hang of shifting, though. My old bike had a front derailleur that you dialed in (as opposed to indexed gears), so I'm struggling with figuring out how to make that work. But I'll get it. I had to walk up half a hill, though, when I couldn't get the thing to shift. :(

Thanks for your words of encouragement, @CheeringCJ ! I'm super happy to be back in the saddle. :)

Congratulations! 

The shifting will become almost automatic after you've had enough time on the bike, just hang in there. You may even be able to tell when you feel and hear the 'clunk' sound as the rear derailleur changes. 

Wish I could count the number of times I have mis-shifted on a hill... :P  With my current bike I often put my front derailleur on the smaller ring and the rear on a small ring ("higher gear") before I actually start going up; so that once actually climbing, I am only shifting the rear derailleur - less chance of a mis-shift. 

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On 7/3/2018 at 4:05 PM, CheeringCJ said:

Ouch....lesson learned, though, right?  Bet you never ride w/o a warmup again!  I hate when you get injured and then can’t workout, that add such insult to the injury!  Glad you are able to do a slower pace for now at least.  You’ll be back to 50 miles soon, but with a stretch first for sure ;) 

Absolutely! Cycled about 14 miles yesterday, still the odd twinge in my Achilles' tendon, but no soreness at all today, for which I am very thankful. @Cardamom77 you'll probably end up with some favorite routes - I track all my cycling using one of the free smartphone apps. It even tells me my speed over each mile of the trip, and the elevation rise or fall. It's been interesting to see my before-and-after-surgery statistics. 

With all the heat here, the cycling paths are relatively deserted, and a ride that ends just before dusk is marvelous. Part of my ride is by a wetlands that some beavers have moved in to, and they have created a big pond. We have turtles that cross the path too. Really lovely. 

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