1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
mtn. biking 101
2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
Results 1 to 18 of 18
  1. #1
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    New to MTB and Forums - Out of Shape

    I am new to mountain biking and to the forums. I have been lurking for about a week now and have finally gotten tired of seeing the little message at the top of my screen that tells me I have never posted here before......

    I purchased a Trek 820 last weekend (I know, not the best, but the best that I could afford...) and I have extremely low endurance for riding. My quads get worn out very quickly. I have only ridden around the house and up and down the road so far for about 30 minutes at a time before I have to stop and take a break.

    Any suggestions on a workout that will help me build my endurance for riding? Is the best way to do more cardio on the stationary bike. (while actually riding my real bike in the evenings...) or should I try to focus more with lighter weights and more repetition with my weight training for my lower body?

    For a little background.... I am a big guy. I weigh about 250 right now at 5'10". (I am fairly strong, I just have a gut to get rid of) I have been working out five days a week for about a month now and have lost ten pounds so far. Anyway... my normal workout consists of three days a week of cardio - sometimes the elliptical machine and sometimes a stationary bike. The other two days I do weight training.

    Thanks for the help.

    Matt

  2. #2
    Trail Rider
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    Ride more...

    The only way to improve is to ride more. You improve your skill and your endurance. You will find by improving your skills, by riding more, you will also improve your endurance. You will learn,over time to ride smarter and that will put less strain on your body. You can also improve your endurance by riding more often in the dirt. Once you ride smarter, you can improve your physical performance by riding up a hill in a chain ring that is harder(physically).

    When I miss a week of riding, I find it harder to ride, the next time out. I try to ride 2-3 times a week.
    [size=4]Don[/size]

  3. #3
    Baron of Gray Matter
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    You've started riding, thats the most important thing. More riding equals more endurance. Weights will not help endurance a lot but they help your body resist injury and fight fatigue since your muscles will be stronger. And more lean mass increases basal metabolism resulting in burning more fat when your not cycling or working out.

    As you ride more your body will adapt in various ways to make you a better cyclist. Your cardiac out will improve, your resting HR will drop along with your BP. Your leg muscles will increase their storage of glycogen, resulting in less fatigue. Your body will learn how to burn fat more effectively and your leg muscles will get stronger and recieve a greater supply of blood due to increase capillarization of muscle tissue. All this just means you will get better on the bike.

    Keep at it and you'll get better. Try LSD------>long steady distance rides.
    "Oh Dear, I've been redorkulated."
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  4. #4
    local trails rider
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    Ride more.

    Personally, I consider the indoor machines boring as ..... Riding in the woods can be pretty hard. It happens that I feel too tired after a previous days ride. Then I find an excuse to GO somewhere by bike, following bike paths, streets, dirt roads, whatever goes in the direction I want.
    Example:
    - Saturday: I did a 4 hour ride on the trails (some people posted in a local forum that they did a lot more than that).
    - Sunday: all my muscles were stiff. Hmmm, there was a downhill race on the other side of town. I rode there, easy pace, following a fairly easy route, watched the race, talked to some riders, found some bike paths I'd never seen before. Felt a lot better.
    - Monday: still a bit tired. OK, just a ride to the library, drop by at a bike shop, buy an ice cream.
    - Today? I'll try to get on the trails for a couple of hours.

    What am I trying to say? ... Try to make your rides longer. You do not have to go hard but spend more time on the bike. Sometimes a bit of discomfort is normal but do not over-do it. You also need to give your body a chance to recover. Enjoy riding. Find a mix of challenges, thrills and relaxation.

  5. #5
    Certified Silly Bugger!
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    I found the best way to build up was to choose as flat a route as possible and do as many easy k's as possible. Slowly build up your base level fitness before proceeding onto the harder stuff.

    Always set your last effort as a bench mark for your next. Even if you only beat it by a few metres you'll see the improvement so rapidly.

    But keep up the easy stuff and do a lot of it. At least 3 rides a week should get you going without demanding to much time.

    Good Luck
    Mmmm..... Gatorale.....

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  6. #6
    smw
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    Just keep riding, you should see some pretty good gains in stamina over the first couple of months.Every week try and up the length odf time you ride as well as the effort you exert. In other words, bump up to say 40 minutes and increase the speed you ride by 1-2 mph. Your doing the right thing already, so just keep it up. Make sure you get ample rest time too.

    Sean
    Gears and suspension are for girls and old men. Feel free to quote me in your signature. - Fast Eddy

  7. #7
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    Make sure you have your seat height adjusted correctly. Having the seat too low is very inefficient.

  8. #8
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    If you are after some sort of structured exercise routines to suit your current level of fitness which in my case was I do not currently exercise!! - then I highly recommend going to this site;

    https://www.polarcyclingcoach.com/?a_FHumfdtczg

    Here you can answer a few simple questions based on your current level of fitness and these guys will give you a weekly training diary free of charge. It will help if you know your maximum heartrate - a rough formula is 220 - AGE.

    Better still if you have or intend purchasing a Polar HRM then you can upload this data to your monitor your rides and performance for each ride - this will also help you ascertain whether you met goals for that ride.

    Polar have released a new Cycling Computer calles the CS200 - I got mine from Speedgoat for $140.00 USD and this includes wireless speed and Cadence as well as ECG accurate HRM and will tell you how many calories you burn on a ride as well + lots of other interesting info.

    I started my personalised program this week and if like me you have not exercised recently I think you might find this the sh!t!!

    If you are seriously out of shape then a visit to your local doctor to tell him/her that you are about to start exercising is recommended.

    Cheers

    Mullos
    Last edited by Mullos; 05-09-2006 at 05:08 PM.

  9. #9
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    Thanks to everyone for the advice. I am going to try to do some longer, more steady rides, rather than trying to go as fast as I can right from the beginning of the ride. I also signed up for the free fitness journal at the Polar website. Thanks again for the advice/help.

    Matt

  10. #10
    Slower than you...
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    I've found that it's very hard to ride myself into shape on the trails. Maybe it's just my local trails, but I don't get the same sustained effort (where I get to choose my exertion level) that I get by riding on the road.

    Last February, I got back into MTB'ing after a 13-year haitus & rode trails 2-3 times a week religiously through Thanksgiving, with a moderate increase in my (perceived) fitness level. A nasty week of weather in early December put me on the pavement on my MTB through January. That month jogged my memory: Hey, I like riding the road, too.

    Long story short: I bought a road bike in January & have logged around 1500 miles this year (roughly 75% road miles). My fitness level is as good as it was 20 years ago, I'm down 25 lb since January 1, eat whatever the h*ll I want (mmm... pie for breakfast) & I'm smoking my MTB riding buddies.

    That said, you don't need to go whole-hog roadie to get into better shape, but I'd recommend picking routes where YOU can A) maintain a constant exertion level and B) choose the exertion level - not have terrain dictate it to you.

    tdh

  11. #11
    local trails rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by tdhood
    ... Maybe it's just my local trails, but I don't get the same sustained effort (where I get to choose my exertion level) that I get by riding on the road.
    ...
    A nasty week of weather in early December put me on the pavement on my MTB through January. That month jogged my memory: Hey, I like riding the road, too.
    ...
    I'd recommend picking routes where YOU can A) maintain a constant exertion level and B) choose the exertion level - not have terrain dictate it to you.
    Yes.

    On my trails, too, I frequently need to go "all out" just to keep from stalling (pant pant).

    On smooth paths, I can go easier or pick up more speed. Going fast on a smooth surface, with a low effort, can be great fun too.

    All the computers and monitors are too scientific for my taste. I prefer to go by feel. Just a personal preference, though.

  12. #12
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    Hey guys, new to the forum just droping in.

    I recomend a few things, all the above is correct doing what you want to get better at (in this case cycling) will get you better at it so to ride better and loger just keep at it.

    Try running a lower gear if possilbe, just crusing along in final gear wont offer you much in the way of cardio wich will be the most important part of the workout as far as endurance and weight loss.

    Make sure you strech out very good before and after riding.

    And if your really serious about sheding pounds, diet is very important. You dont have to be a total heath freak and be getting weight watchers and fofu, just be aware of the bad stuff your eating, like fast food, soda, junk food, ect... And try to cut down on it slowly.

    Also dont eat a meal before bed!

    I am new to biking (I dont even have my bike yet saving for it) but I have been a martial arts instructor and I am a cerfied personal trainer, so you can feel at ease in my words.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by 古強者死神
    Hey guys, new to the forum just droping in.

    I recomend a few things, all the above is correct doing what you want to get better at (in this case cycling) will get you better at it so to ride better and loger just keep at it.

    Try running a lower gear if possilbe, just crusing along in final gear wont offer you much in the way of cardio wich will be the most important part of the workout as far as endurance and weight loss.

    Make sure you strech out very good before and after riding.

    And if your really serious about sheding pounds, diet is very important. You dont have to be a total heath freak and be getting weight watchers and fofu, just be aware of the bad stuff your eating, like fast food, soda, junk food, ect... And try to cut down on it slowly.

    Also dont eat a meal before bed!

    I am new to biking (I dont even have my bike yet saving for it) but I have been a martial arts instructor and I am a cerfied personal trainer, so you can feel at ease in my words.
    I tend to eat dinner at 10pm alot and goto bed at say 12.. is that really bad for me?.. even if you do it alot?

  14. #14
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    smithsb1111,
    reflux...

  15. #15
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    2 hours is enough time to give your body time to digest and burn off some of the calories so its not too bad, I am mostly refering to those who have a meal or a "bed time snack" just before going to bed.

    Your body goes into slow mo when you sleep, all its fuctions run at minimal levels and that includes burning calories and digestion.

    So pretty much anything you eat right before bed is going to get stored as fat instead of burned up as energy.

    Then the next day the fat is much harder to use over the carbo's and simple sugars in your system so its like 1 step forward 2 steps back every time you do that.

  16. #16
    BBW
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    My friend, I know that you are trying to give a good advice (from what you may know) but What you are stating here about the "fat is much harder to use..." and the Nutrition it's not true.
    You may be a personal instructor (which institution?) but don't know anything about Nutrition so don't say things that you don't know because you are missinforming people. Stick to what you know and say general things

    (I am a Register Dietitian and Sports Nutritionist)

    I'm not counseling people thrue internet because is not ethical and dangerous (You need to get the medical history of the person)

    Be careful saying "you can feel at ease in my words"

    And my advice to Mellis95: LOOK FOR PROFESIONAL HELP
    Look the credentials of the person, don't play with your health getting "tips" from who you don't know who is or not

    Look for a Sports Nutritionist/ Register Dietitian and a Certified personal trainer (Always check credential)

    Sorry if it's a little harsh

  17. #17
    local trails rider
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    Getting professional help cannot hurt (except your wallet).

    Gaining fitness and losing fat did not use to be rocket science:
    - work out, but not so hard it kills you. Even gardening counts as a workout
    - eat less, but do not drop the kinds of food that your body really needs. Your body does not need lots of fats and sugar.
    - if you feel bad, and a little rest does not help, see a doctor.

  18. #18
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    Its not harsh I welcome any feeback.

    I worked for Life Styles Family Fitness the biggets and best gym in my area, they sent me off to get certified as a personal trainer, then from there I got certified as a green belt martial arts instructor in the marines.

    I have picked up various bits of knowledge from people and other trainers, and have alot of personal experience from my own training.

    sugars and simple carbos always burn first before the fat does, your body uses those as the primary source of energy, after those are nearly depleted the fat begins to burn as a source of energy, fat is just stored energy as far as im concerned. Any of those carbo's and surgars you dont burn away get stored as fat.

    I dont know how your not saying thats true, its one of the first and simple things you learn in any kind of nutrition, I can probably easily dig up many web links from a nutrition site stating the same thing.

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