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A year ago I found a nice group to ride with, a great used bike, and some new friends to ride around my area with. But I took some time off to do some other things on the weekend. So, now the group I rode with is way too advanced, so are my new friends, I mean I was awaaaaaay slow to begin with and I've managed to gain 10 more pounds. Now I'm just painfully too slow and fat for them. I still have the bike and the desire to ride though.

Anyone got recommendations as to how far I should ride by myself during the week to try and get back into some kind of shape and enough to help me lose some of this weight?

Thanks
PJA
 

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there's been more written about this than about religion, i think. basically, though, the standard training rules apply, assuming you don't have some physical condition that modifies them. Do what you can do at a pace you can maintain, and add no more than 10 percent a week to your time and distance. Take a rest day or at least an easy day every so often--your muscles need time to recover. mix up your rides--cruising on the flat one day, maybe climbing the next, sprint now and then, alternate a short, hard ride with a longer, easier one. Make it fun so you'll stay with it. That will get you through the first couple of months. then you just google "bicycle training" and pick from among the half a million hits.
 

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IMO, you've just made a brave statement. I urge you to continue to maintain contacts and friendships with the group. Explain to them that you've been not feeling well (a true statement), not riding, and that you'd like to get back into the swing of things. Tell them you know you're slower, you've gained some weight, but you'd like to ride with them. All you can do then is suit up, mount up, and see what happens.

Good on you for admitting where you've been/are. Keep on keepin' on.
 

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I had a similar experience. Was getting into riding again after 18 years off. met up and became friends with a group of guys, all of us pretty close in ability. Well, after a year or so of riding together, I somehow got side-tracked into Downhill Mountainbike riding/racing. For 9 months I was away from long road rides, long XC mtb rides. drinking beer, riding ski resorts, camping, gaining weight. When I started roadie again, I was dropped, smoked, rolled, dusted...

I had to work hard. to get back up to speed. and it took a long time.
The good news is. since I was starting at a lower fitness point than them, my improvements came faster than improvement they made. (i.e., it is easier to go from bad to decent than it is from decent to excellent).

Second good news, what I learned from working hard, training smarter (core traiing, fixed gear, going outside the bubble of just riding road) allowed me to catch up, and even surpass my riding buds.
 

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Just started out myself and trying to increase my speed and milage to be able to ride with my firends as well. One thing they do for me is let me know when they are doing a "recovery" ride. This way I am still able to ride with the group on the days they are not worried about going fast or long distances. They still make me work to keep up with them though.

I am up to solo rides of 30 miles at about a 15 or 16 mph average...so I am hoping by mid season I might be able to hang with them on the harder rides.
 

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Find out what routes they are riding and their average speed. Then work on your own to try and get close to those numbers. When the time comes, you can rejoin the group and since riding is easier in a group you should be fine.
 
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