Biking: Catch-all

Bought a trainer. Used it twice. Better than a stationary bike. The wear is largely on your tires.

I currently have a Trek Fuel Ex 8, and I want to upgrade to carbon in the spring. Drooling over the Fuel Ex 9.9, particularly with the amazing purple paint job, but $8300 is way too much for me to spend on a bike, so I guess I'll just post a few pics here so y'all can commiserate with me.

IMAGE(https://trek.scene7.com/is/image/TrekBicycleProducts/FuelEX9929_19_23652_E_Portrait?$responsive-pjpg$&wid=1500&hei=1125)

IMAGE(https://trek.scene7.com/is/image/TrekBicycleProducts/FuelEX9929_19_23652_E_Alt6?$responsive-pjpg$&wid=1500&hei=1125)

Now, I can get the Fuel Ex carbon frameset for $3300, and all my components will swap over, so that's a much more realistic purchase, though the frameset only comes in black...

That paint job looks pretty sick.

Last Sunday I didn't realize my action cam was snapping pictures along with video so some New England Fall casual ride pics:

Spoiler:

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/8uYrLZH.jpg)
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If I spend anything north of $2000 on a bike, I expect it to come with a good electric motor.

LarryC wrote:

If I spend anything north of $2000 on a bike, I expect it to come with a good electric motor.

bleh. My bike was ~$2500 Canadian, and I love it. Wish I'd gotten a 19.5" frame instead of the 17.5" but oh well.

It's an older bike now, Trek Fuel Ex 7, but it was bomb then and I still love it today.

So I maaaaaay have signed up for a 225 mile one day ride across Wisconsin this year.

Wish me luck.

Good luck!

So, I'm thinking that at some point when my available gear matches the weather, I'm going to try bike commuting at least part of the time. Anyone have advice about the best way to not arrive in a pool of sweat?

Pros:
Very short commute: <5 miles
Access to a locker at work, if I want it.
Few days will have close time constraints involving needing a car shortly after work.
I have a bike I like with a good light and a rack/panniers.
Good bike rack at work.

Cons:
Most of the trip to work is uphill.
I'm not a morning person, and will probably resent the lost sleep. (That and the hill outside my front door are disproportionately large psychological obstacles.)
Cannot be sweaty at work, as I have a customer-facing job.
Don't currently own gear to extend my riding season much out of the April-October time frame; rain could also be an issue.
I struggle to change/patch my tires; if I ever get a puncture, I'm SOL and calling for a ride of shame... which will not be readily available at the time I'm likely to be commuting. (Getting the tires on/off the rims has been historically difficult for me, even with tire irons.)

How do you approach your commute? Any advice for facing my psychological obstacles?

1. If you can afford it, get a power assist bicycle. This will flatten the grade without taking away all your exercise.
2. Spin, not mash.
3. Don't race. Go slow. No. Slower than that. Like it's your vacation and you have all the time to ride.
4. Do invest in armoured tires and sealants in the tires. I haven't had a flat in years.
5. Take your bike for a side shop trip every month. Get it washed and have them check the tires for punctures.
6. Try a folding bike.
7. Practice doing your commute route at least a few times on your weekend. Once you start, start easy. Once a week is plenty to start.

Katy wrote:

I struggle to change/patch my tires; if I ever get a puncture, I'm SOL and calling for a ride of shame... which will not be readily available at the time I'm likely to be commuting. (Getting the tires on/off the rims has been historically difficult for me, even with tire irons.)

Buy a pair of these and you'll never, ever have to worry about flats or pumping your tires again.

Disclaimer: I've never tried them, but I'm considering putting a pair on my touring bike, and all the research I've done seems to indicate that they're pretty ok. Cycling weekly specifically recommends them for commuting purposes.

Just a thought I had, but before committing to the commute, maybe take a Sat or Sun and ride in to work to see how you feel, that way you have a good base line on things you could improve to make the ride better.

Serengeti wrote:
Katy wrote:

I struggle to change/patch my tires; if I ever get a puncture, I'm SOL and calling for a ride of shame... which will not be readily available at the time I'm likely to be commuting. (Getting the tires on/off the rims has been historically difficult for me, even with tire irons.)

Buy a pair of these and you'll never, ever have to worry about flats or pumping your tires again.

Disclaimer: I've never tried them, but I'm considering putting a pair on my touring bike, and all the research I've done seems to indicate that they're pretty ok. Cycling weekly specifically recommends them for commuting purposes.

The Tannus Armour...Tannus Armour (it's like an album named after the band) is a pretty intriguing idea. I'd never heard of these.

LarryC wrote:

1. If you can afford it, get a power assist bicycle. This will flatten the grade without taking away all your exercise.

I run hot so this was the only solution for me. I ended up using it in New England weather for most of spring, summer, and part of fall before we had 9+ inches of rain in a couple months. I miss it....

I bike to work almost every day (though not at all this month). It is Iowa so it gets very hot and muggy in the summer. Perfect weather for sweating while just sitting outside. In addition, I sweat a lot. A 30 minute jog in the summer will give me a sweat bib to my shorts. If you sweat less than that or live in a drier area you should be okay.

Depending on various factors, traffic, weather, et al, it may not take you significantly longer to bike. My commute is 15 minutes by bike and 10 by car. It's a drive through residential areas where the speed limit is 30 at most. There are bike lanes most of the way. I bike using a 29er mountain bike with 2.3" tires. If I used a commuter bike I'd shave a couple minutes off my time easily. While I have a carbon fiber road bike I've never felt the need to use it. I arrive 10 minutes early and sit at my desk in my biking clothes (gym clothes, really) in front of the fan. It helps a lot. I generally just start to sweat when I arrive in the summer. Once it gets cold I don't really sweat. My bike commute used to be 12 miles each way (which I only did May-August) along a busy 55mph road and a lot of these are based on that commute.

1. Wear biking clothes to work and pack your work clothes. I wear just a tshirt and shorts. Nothing fancy. You might also consider a cold towel. I used one on my longer commutes and it does help.
2. Get a decent set of panniers instead of a backpack. The backpack will make you sweat and it messes with your center of gravity. The panniers should be water resistant.
3. Get the most breathable helmet you can find. I'll be honest. I don't usually wear a helmet (for my old commute I would never ride without one). I should but I don't. I wear one when doing longer rides but my work commute is a very open route without heavy traffic.
4. Get some fitness wipes like these.
5. Pack a microfiber hair towel like this one. It dries way better than standard towels. I also pack hair gel and deodorant.
6. If you can, get a fan to sit at your desk for a few minutes.
7. Arrive early so you can cool down before you use the fitness wipes and towel.
8 I don't go slow but I'm not pushing hard either. In the summer, going slow just leaves you in the hot mugginess for longer. Also, don't discount the wind factor (though it may be be much of one if your hill is steep). I sweat less on a bike ride than I do a run because of the wind (even on my mtb).

I wouldn't worry too much about it if you are starting in April.

Lots of info on flats from others. I will say I have never had a flat on my mtb. I had two flats on my road bike during the time I did the 12 mile commute over about 5 years. I also had one chain issue where the chain broke. Things do happen but if you maintain the bike properly that should minimize issues quite a bit. It's a lot more enjoyable if you like biking and a great way to get exercise.

Today is new bike day. I got this one:

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)

NBD!

I bike commuted for a couple years in england, only taking the bus when the it snowed.

I couldn't imagine doing it without the availability of a shower at my destination. Even changing into dry clothes wouldn't be sufficient for me - even after the shower, it'd take me a while to cool down enough to stop sweating. I even had to delay my first cup of tea of the day (#pearlclutch) or it'd make me start sweating again.

I'm thinking to do a triathlon or two this summer, and am in need of a triathlon bike. I'm not looking for a top end bike, but I don't want to be slogging along on something that weighs a ton. My thinking is that now (February, winter, lots of snow) would be a good time to buy. I think I can spend $1k-$2k, with about $1500 as an ideal amount.

I'm wondering, any things I should be looking for? Things to avoid? Is that an unrealistic budget?

I did triathlons for a while, but I didn't use a Tri bike. The reason for that is because I wasn't looking to podium and tri bikes are extremely specialised racing machines. I used a road bike with relaxed geometry - endurance or adventure tuned. This allowed me to enjoy my "training" rides and also use the bike for other purposes without looking too foolish about it.

But yeah, $2000 should be okay.

EDIT: I'd like to clarify that the budget is sufficient for any choice of road bike suitable for a triathlon. You will only need a more expensive bike if you're fighting for seconds of time and you're looking to podium. Otherwise, it shouldn't matter all that much.

That's super helpful, thanks LarryC. Makes a lot of sense, and I think that a road bike with relaxed geometry would make more sense. I'm not looking to podium, for sure.

I'm going to head out to a local biking/tri store and see what things look like.

I did a few sprint triathlons several years ago (not the full on ones but shorter 5k run, 20 mile bike ride, 500m swim). I did mine on a used Trek 1000 I bought on craigslist for about $250. There were people there on all kinds of bikes. I saw more than a few mountain bikes (including a single speed Trek 930). If you are doing shorter triathlons I wouldn't worry too much about the bike.

I now have a Felt carbon fiber road bike that is worlds better than the old Trek I used. I paid about $1500 for it. I think you can easily find a solid bike around $1500.

I agree with LarryC & EvilHomer3k:

$1500 should be good for a nice beginner-to-mid-range road bike. For that price you'll find a lot of lightweight aluminum frames with carbon stays and mid-range drivetrain (Shimano 105 or roundabouts), maybe some cheaper carbon frames with lower-end components.

I wouldn't bother with a straight-up Tri bike yet, unless you get super serious with it. Start with a comfy, racey road bike and you'll have fun and feel good. Plus you'll have a better all-rounder for regular road rides and climbs and such when you don't want to also go swimming and/or running. if you get more into the sport, install some aero-bars, and if you want to be even more pro and have the money by then, look into a $2K tri-bike.

Thanks everyone!

The local triathlon shop carries a lot of Felt bikes, and I was talking with a friend who uses one for his training as well. I didn't get out there this weekend (lots of falling snow), but I'm hoping to make a trip in the next few days.

I do like the idea of some sort of mid-range general racing road bike, probably with some aero-bars installed for a race. I'll need a shoe system too and maybe a new helmet, so keeping the bike around $1500 should probably allow me to get everything under $2k.

I'll post an update as I get further in the process!

IMAGE(https://www.dropbox.com/s/sx6e0gcw4v2n04x/20190214_173508.jpg?dl=1)Went out to ride for a bit. This is around the ol' University.