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  1. #1
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    Thinking about changing my bike philosophy

    I have been of the mindset that I need several bikes. I needed my mountain bike for mountain biking, a road/cross bike for commuting, and a beater bike for locking up around town.

    My wife hates all the bikes and parts I have. She puts up them, and the bike bug never really bit her like I hoped it would. When we got married she had a beach cruiser, and I convinced her to get hid of it so we could get her something faster so that we could ride together. The problem is we have been through three or four bikes for her, and she ends up hating them all. She hasn't felt comfortable with the geometry. She feels likes she has issues being so far off the ground. She really misses the cruiser and how when she stopped she could just drop her feet and remain seated. She doesn't get that same feeling on road bikes, fitness bikes, or street converted mountain bikes. She just feels unstable, and I have seen her freak out about stability when we make sudden stops. She has even toppled a few times while trying to get her footing during an expected stop.

    After years of being a bonehead, I am starting to realize that the only way I can get her to want to ride more is if I adapt to cycling at her speed. I am thinking about selling all my bikes and parts and buying her a cruiser and getting myself a utility bike. I am thinking just something asthletically pleasing for the wife, and I am going to start looking for a single speed bike with rack grommets and a coaster brake.

  2. #2
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    Have you tried anything from Electra? Sounds like something with their foot forward geo would be right up her alley. And you may even be able to get her on a quicker model like the Verse and take it for some nice rides together.

  3. #3
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    Happy wife = Happy Life!

    Wife likes the way her bike is Made = She will be so happy you might get laid!

  4. #4
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    tell her to htfu

  5. #5
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    Thinking about changing my bike philosophy

    N+1 for my personal likes, BUT...the girlfriend is just N=1. She had a mixte with 3 speed Nexus hub. Easy to shift & not too many gears to pick from. The step thru allows for easy on, easy off. I use a single speed coaster brake for myself when we go on rides. It makes it enjoyable for her to have me going slow along with her.


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  6. #6
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    Get her what she wants, and when you ride with her, ride at her pace, whatever you're on. Doesn't mean you have to give up other aspects of riding you might enjoy.

  7. #7
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    I think one of the smartest decisions I have made in life was to NOT push my wife into riding. she has no interest in it so we do other fun things together. if she's not into it, don't force it or she will resent it and it will not be fun for either of you.

  8. #8
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    Get a big dummy and haul around weights so you can get in a workout while you ride at her speed.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle View Post
    I think one of the smartest decisions I have made in life was to NOT push my wife into riding. she has no interest in it so we do other fun things together. if she's not into it, don't force it or she will resent it and it will not be fun for either of you.
    ^^^this

    While I would love my wife to ride with me, she just isn't into it. Plus, riding time is me-time...time to decompress and sort stuff out in my head. And when we do ride together it's at her pace and direction. It works for us.

  10. #10
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    My wife also hasn't been bitten by the bug.

    My singlespeed is good for riding with her, because it helps me behave myself. If we go for a ride, I just enjoy the fact that wherever we're going I won't get sweaty. And knowing how much time I spend changing clothes for normal rides, I sometimes wonder if I wouldn't be better off commuting at her speed and just wearing street clothes.

    I wouldn't get rid of any bikes because of her, though.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk View Post
    Get her what she wants, and when you ride with her, ride at her pace, whatever you're on. Doesn't mean you have to give up other aspects of riding you might enjoy.
    +1. My hubby and kids do not share my love of the bike. While I have 5, they each have 1 per person. As much as I would love to have more company on rides, I realize they just aren't into it like I am. Fortunately, when they do ride with me, I enjoy it for what it is(slow & chatty & short distances) and not what it isn't(like an actual sweat inducing rip roaring good time half day excursion). I grab my go-slow ride & enjoy. But yeah, I wouldn't sell any of my other ones either.

    I akin it to them liking gaming. Sure, every once in a while, they can com me into playing Mario Cart or Sonic the Hedgehog with them but it is fleeting and I enjoy it only for spending time with them doing what they enjoy. I find gaming much like having a root canal though, there is no way I could do that for hours! It just isn't my thing. And that's okay, just like biking isn't their thing.

    We occasionally do each activity together but also understand that it is okay to have different likes as well. It gives us something to talk about at the dinner table
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nakedbabytoes View Post
    I find gaming much like having a root canal though, there is no way I could do that for hours!
    Be honest, you've never actually had a root canal have you?

    OP: I more or less got my wife on a bike after years of a self induced bad memory of my brother-in-law taking her training wheels off too soon when she was a child. Truth be told, it was probably time to remove them, she just didn't want her brother to do it and she pouted for decades. Anyway, the wife enjoys riding at her pace and I have to be ok with that if I want it to be an activity we can do together. It is not an activity she makes time for, nor is it an activity she can do on a whim. Typically, I'll go for a ride and come back for a cool down ride with her after I've thrashed about on my own for a bit. That's the balance we've reached. Sure, I would like her to go out of her comfort zone, but she has to build up her confidence and I have to give her room to do so at her own pace. I would like to be able to do a bike camping trip with her sometime in the future, but I doubt she'll ever be interested in rolling in the woods. That's her personality though, she is not a risk taker by nature. One of the first times we were out, I mentioned she should look to her left to view the lake and some geese and she OTBed. She got really upset with the adrenaline rush and we had to sit at a nearby picnic table for an hour until she got the courage to get back on the bike. She's a really sweet gal, but she isn't a thrill seeker. It's not a deal breaker, we just keep the balance and she progresses at her own pace with my encouragement. Granted, it's difficult at times, but I'd rather she ride a little than not at all so I deal with her terms. Good luck with your wife and finding your shared biking balance.
    Last edited by dbhammercycle; 03-03-2014 at 11:00 AM.
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  13. #13
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    Thinking about changing my bike philosophy

    Actually, yes I have had a root canal. And an oral injury from first grade that required monthly visits to the dentist until I was 18. So yes, I know what pain is, thanks for asking. Did I say it compared to childbirth? No, so obviously there are levels of pain one might be willing to endure.
    Gaming isn't my thing. I can pretend a good game or two but will you catch me doing it alone. Or even suggest it for fun? No, that isn't my bag. They know it. I know it. Sometimes I get them to bike just like they get me to game. It's a compromise but I wouldn't expect them to sell all their other games just to have only ones I might sometimes halfheartedly play.

    If OP wants to sell all his rides and just have 2 matching cruisers since that is his wife's comfort level, he can do that, but should he? Does he have to? Does his wife make the same commitment to his likes vs her own? Hypothetical:
    Say she was a runner and he sometimes might sortof like to walk. Should she sell all her running gear & shoes and only walk/have walking stuff since his less interest level should match hers? Is that good for either of them? I would be devastated if my hubby altered his level of gaming love & equipment for me & my lack of interest in it. Less interest of a partner should be the default status? That just doesn't seem right.

    It is okay to have varying interests & enjoyment levels in things, was my point.

    But hey, don't let interwebz strangers give you marriage counseling.


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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nakedbabytoes View Post
    Actually, yes I have had a foot canal. And an oral injury from first grade that required monthly visits to the dentist until I was 18. So yes, I know what pain is, thanks for asking. Did I say it compared to childbirth? No, so obviously there are levels of pain one might be willing to endure.
    I don't know about foot canals, but the whole irony about the root canal thing is that most of the time your mouth is so numb, you can barely feel anything.

    Anyway (for the OP now), I kind of agree with the other people. Maybe you don't need to rethink your bike philosophy but your wife philosophy. If she wants a new bike, get her one, but don't force her into something and don't sell all your bikes just to get her riding (which may or may not happen). My wife doesn't ride all that much, but she'll go on a ride with me from time to time. Many times I'll have her go first so I don't leave her behind. Riding after her on a singlespeed works on the flats, but I have to lose her as soon as we hit any hills. At least with gears, I can shift and maintain a slow speed.

    As for your bikes, would you really be satisfied with only having a utility bike? I know I wouldn't. Every nice day that came along, I'd be thinking of how much fun I could be having on the trails. I'd recommend keeping your bikes, or at least two of them, and buying your wife a bike she wants (if she wants one).

  15. #15
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    Okay toes, sorry about your sensitive feet, I mean teeth. I found the comment that you would rather have a root canal than play video games to possibly be a hypothetical you imagined as a fair comparison. I myself have had 3 root canals, first at around 12 from a dentist with just about the worst breath you can imagine. I didn't find it all that painful with the novocaine, the smell of grinding tooth was the worst part for me, aside from having a lot of energy and being stuck in chair for a couple hours. Just trying to insert some harmless jibing is all. I'll refrain from quoting anything you have written in the future so I don't cause a potential row at your place of work or in your family home. Take a deep breath and calm yourself, my comment in no way should be taken nearly as insultory as you have interpreted my purpose to be in posting it. The point of my post is much the same as your own, that it's perfectly fine to have disparate interests and enjoy an activity at your own level by yourself. My relationship with my own wife is not in any way harmed by the gap of our own interest levels as it pertains to cycling. The OP can and will do what he feels is the best course of action, although I think his wife should be understanding of his hobby if she would like the same courtesy for her own interests.
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  16. #16
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    Thinking about changing my bike philosophy

    Lol! No seriousness taken. It takes a helluvalot more than that, boys, to get my panties in a wad. Better luck next time I am rarely a serious person, it takes a lot of novacaine to get me offended.

    Foot canals are painful, for sure. Good thing I have less feet than teeth


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  17. #17
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    Nope, not biting.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by codwater View Post
    I have been of the mindset that I need several bikes. I needed my mountain bike for mountain biking, a road/cross bike for commuting, and a beater bike for locking up around town.

    My wife hates all the bikes and parts I have. She puts up them, and the bike bug never really bit her like I hoped it would. When we got married she had a beach cruiser, and I convinced her to get hid of it so we could get her something faster so that we could ride together. The problem is we have been through three or four bikes for her, and she ends up hating them all. She hasn't felt comfortable with the geometry. She feels likes she has issues being so far off the ground. She really misses the cruiser and how when she stopped she could just drop her feet and remain seated. She doesn't get that same feeling on road bikes, fitness bikes, or street converted mountain bikes. She just feels unstable, and I have seen her freak out about stability when we make sudden stops. She has even toppled a few times while trying to get her footing during an expected stop.

    After years of being a bonehead, I am starting to realize that the only way I can get her to want to ride more is if I adapt to cycling at her speed. I am thinking about selling all my bikes and parts and buying her a cruiser and getting myself a utility bike. I am thinking just something asthletically pleasing for the wife, and I am going to start looking for a single speed bike with rack grommets and a coaster brake.
    The difference could come from different cycling goals, or from different cycling ability. If mostly the latter, a tandem or a single-speed might be helpful. In the case of my wife and I, it's both to some extent. We found some peace on a tandem - as long as I don't want to go too fast - and some peace with a single-speed fat-bike for her.

    She can be surprisingly fast on that single-speed fat-bike but her confidence is fleeting and easily derailed by any mishap.

    I am NOT saying to get your wife a fat-bike! I am saying to try some different angles and go with what she likes.

  19. #19
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    Be patient and let her pick out her bike.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by bugshield View Post
    The difference could come from different cycling goals, or from different cycling ability. If mostly the latter, a tandem or a single-speed might be helpful. In the case of my wife and I, it's both to some extent. We found some peace on a tandem - as long as I don't want to go too fast - and some peace with a single-speed fat-bike for her.

    She can be surprisingly fast on that single-speed fat-bike but her confidence is fleeting and easily derailed by any mishap.

    I am NOT saying to get your wife a fat-bike! I am saying to try some different angles and go with what she likes.
    For the love of god don't tell your wife she needs a "fat bike". You will not survive.

  21. #21
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    No wife but have gf who is not into cycling like myself, she bikes to work in the warmer months which is about 2 miles 4 miles round trip on a bike a friend gave her. She does not see cycling like do nor understand the bikes I have or why I do it. I learned I am not going to get her to ride like I ride or some of my friends. So what I did is when/if we go for a ride I just use a old MTB I converted to a around town SS with a rack on the back, I will usually carry anything she wants to bring on me or the bike and let her enjoy the ride. That way I am getting some additional exercise being loaded down on a SS and she can just enjoy.

    Oddly that SS MTB cruiser is my most comfortable bike to use, it has big wide mary bars, steel, and decent tires on wide rims. If I was going to buy new on something like that I would look at a Surly Troll or if I was much taller an Ogre.

    I think an Electra might be the way to go if she is more comfortable putting her feet down while seated, definitely let her try out a ton of different bikes.
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  22. #22
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    You know I just remembered something else on the subject. One day while riding on the trail I passed this older lady riding a bike with an electric hub motor. I asked her about it, and she said she has it to keep up with her husband, who's much more into riding. This way they can go riding together and she can relax and cruise while he pushes himself.

    I thought it was a very good idea.

  23. #23
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    Okay, after much searching I have found a more cruiser-esque bike I would love. However, I'm not sure I want to part with my bike for it. My current bike is the specialized secteur disc. I am set up with a rear rack. I absolutely love the bike.

    Thinking about changing my bike philosophy-2013_secteur_spt_disc.png

    The bike I am considering replacing it with is super cool. It is the Globe Live 3. Belt driven, disc brakes, and 10 speed internal hub.

    Thinking about changing my bike philosophy-1277913381.jpg

    I love my bike, but this one is soooo cool too. I can't have both because I am in the process of buying a house and need all my cash. So the question is, keep this specialized or get the globe. No matter what I am getting rid of my other less expensive bike and getting the wife a Dutch bike. I just need to decide what to do for my primary bike. The globes were limited runs and it just so happens the shop down the street has one discounted for 980.

  24. #24
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    You're nuts. Keep the Specialized. If you really want a slow bike to ride with your wife, buy a cheap used cruiser or fixie.

  25. #25
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    ^x2.

    You'll lose money if you sell the Specialized, when you could just buy a walmart fixie for $100 or one of the boutique brands like purefix for $300. I'm in a condo and really don't have any room for extra bikes, but I'm pretty sure I could squeeze in a fixie if I needed to.

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