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I won't call it cycling since I may never go outside and actually ride a real bike. I've grown old at 25 and my body just doesn't handle the pounding of running like it used to. I'm unable to train at the mileage I want to so I'm considering doing something different for a while. The other night I hopped on one of the stationary bikes at the gym and I kind of enjoyed it. I've even shopped around to see what it may cost me to go into this sport if I get tired of just hammering away at the gym. Sadly, I don't know what I'm looking at from an equipment perspective.<br><br>
My questions are many, but I'll post a few to start with and go from there.<br><br>
1)Are the training ideas in biking fairly similar to running? That is, do you alternate hard\easy efforts? Build a base? Sharpen with hills and then intervals?<br><br>
2)What kind of mileage do "normal" people do? Speed?<br><br>
3)If I do decide that I want to do more and actually ride outdoors and possibly race, how much $$$ am I looking at to have acceptable equipment?<br><br>
I'll monitor the other thread for a begginners training plan, but if anyone has links to training plans of all levels, feel free to post them here as well. Thanks
 

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I can't help much with the training aspect, but I've bought plenty of equipment. And done the research. You can buy a decent bike off eBay if you're diligent and willing to spend some time looking. You won't get a great deal, but you'll probably get a fair one.<br><br>
When it comes to buying a bike, some will say to invest in a good frame regardless of the components. I think that makes sense sometimes, but the standards do change over time and that kick ass frame you bought may not accomodate new components in 6 years. I bought the best combination I could afford. You should be able to get a pretty decent road bike for 600-800 bucks. Be ready to drop another 200 for gear - like helmets, shorts, shoes, pedals (most bikes don't come with them).<br><br>
Shimano component hierarchy goes like this: Dura-Ace is the best, then Ultegra, 105, Tiagra and Sora. I wouldn't invest in anything with less than 105, unless it's a really, really nice frame (which probably won't have 105 anyway). When you're shopping, pay close attention to which grouppe the bike has, because that's a big part of your investment. Some sellers will list mileage. Personally, I don't think it's that big of a deal unless it has 10K miles on it. Mine had over 4K, and it looked brand new when I bought it.
 

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Also remember that fit is the key. Not all bikes fit the same and if the fit is wrong you just won't enjoy riding. 105 would be a good grouppo to go with - you could probably make due with Tiagra if money is an issue. I'd just look at good quality market brands like Specialized, Trek, Kona, etc. and I'd be wary of e-bay. Peeps pay waaaay too much for stuff there sometimes.
 

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If you have a bike that fits and is comfortable the sky is the limit. I am 51, in better aerobic shape then anyone I work with, but pretty lame compared to most of my runner friends. I got a fantastic bike the first week of September and September 29th did a century ride (100 miles) with only 190 miles as a base. I did it at avg 14 mph with the "b" group of my club and at the end I was tired but not incredibly sore anywhere, next day a tiny bit of soreness above the knees, next day nothing. If you can run at all you should be fine to bike right out of the box if your bike fits. It may need a few adjustments, if you are too sore in the back or neck or seat area.<br><br>
Find a bike club where you live. There are 3 in my general area. They have different levels from C, B, A, AA and Open. They are very social and you ride with the group you can keep up with. They will help you with training too. They also often know of people selling good bikes, ones that are well kept.<br><br>
In my club and the others around here the rides are usually 25 miles and up. I don't feel like I've gotten my moneys worth unless I get in 35 or more, but then I only get to go on weekends. C pace is 11–14 MPH, B is 14–17 MPH, A is 17–20 MPH, and AA is 20–23 MPH. "Open" denotes race training.<br><br>
You will need a bike computer too. I have a wireless Cateye, under $45. Tells you how fast you are going, avg speed, how far you went. If you want to go for more $$ you can get one that does cadence and even heart rate. You need at least the basic one though.......a wired one can be even cheaper.<br><br>
You need those spandex shorts. The chamois is why. Also, the compression is good for your quads. You need the spandex top with the pockets in the back....gotta have somewhere to carry your stuff. Look for ones on sale. I know some of us look awful in them but you get over it real quick.<br><br>
You are also gonna need spare tubes and a multitool, if you ride with a club you can skip the tools and the pumps as most of them will have them and help you but you need your own tubes. And a wedge for behind your seat to keep them in. It's not a cheap sport by any means but it is addicting!!!<br><br>
I am in a different age group obviously, you have many years to get a really nice bike, but I agree, nothing less then 105 and as light a frame as you can get.<br><br>
Have fun and keep us posted!!<br><br>
Barb
 

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I bike as cross training for running, and to do tris. I am by no means a real biker!<br><br>
In the summer, I try to get on my bike on Sundays, for anywhere from 45 minutes to 2 hours. It took me several seasons to get slightly comfy riding on the roads. I finally got a road bike and love it.<br><br>
My one piece of advice, get a good saddle (seat). I had some numb tingly sensations in areas where you don't want that. Good saddle = no tingly/numb! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Smile"><br><br>
The stationary bikes at the gym are crap, if you want to simulate riding a real bike. That gigantic seat is about 100x more uncomfortable than my teeny bike seat. Plus, it doesn't even come close to the type of resistance you get outside, pedaling wise. I put my road bike on a trainer in the winter so that I can workout on it, inside, all winter long. A trainer is a contraption that you hook your back tire onto, so you turn your bike into a real stationary one. It's great for when it's too cold or icy to run, or just as general cross training. I also like to not completely lose bike fitness in the winter, since I usually do a tri in early June.<br><br>
Biking is far more expensive than running. You need the bike, the helmet (a must have), bike shorts with padding are real nice, bike pump, etc. I don't do the pedals that you clip into, because I'm a huge chicken. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Very Happy"> But I did put toe clips on my pedals, which helps. I find it harder to just up and go for a bike ride than a run. It requires more planning and gear.<br><br>
Other advice- if you are going to go out riding, learn to change a tire. GO to your local bike shop and take a class. It is not hard. I totally thought I could never change a tire, but after one class, I do fine! It's actually quite easy once you've done it a couple times.
 

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Also- try spinning at the gym. That much more closely simulates real biking than a stationary that is on the gym floor next to the treadmills. Plus, the classes rock.
 

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1. Yes. Bikers do long distance, sprints, hills, tempo, etc. just like runners. A lot depends on the type of biking you do. Mountain biking requires different skills than road, or cyclocross, or track... you get the picture.<br><br>
2. See #1. How much mileage depends on how much time you have and what kind of biking you're interested in. Sprinters will do less mileage, but at a faster rate, than people who want to do centuries but not race. I think 25-50 miles is a fairly common long day for quite a few people.<br><br>
3. You can pay anywhere from a few hundred to many thousands for a bike. Do you want a hybrid, mountain bike, road bike, or tri bike? Check out <a href="http://www.bikeforums.net" target="_blank">www.bikeforums.net</a>. It's a bike forum where you can ask almost any bike question. They tend to have stickies on topics like "the best road bike under $300" and things like that, too.<br><br>
If possible, I would try out many different kinds of bikes and see what is most enjoyable to you. That will help you decide where to put your money.<br><br>
Remember, the money doesn't stop at the bike. A helmet is mandatory. So is a small underseat bag and enough tools to change a tire and do some minor repairs. You should have a portable pump. Then there's the clothing. Good shorts and a good saddle will save your social life. Gloves are a nice thing to have on longer rides. Etc.
 
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