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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So i am new to cycling and kinda overwhelmed about all the bikes and different componets that are out there... there is a bike shop near me that i went to the other day... the guy was super nice and shared a lot of info... they sell specialized bikes... i have looked online but dont find much about those bikes... i see a lot of info on TREK beginner bikes...

If you could lend any info to help me make a decision that would be great.... this bike shop fits you for the bike and gives free tune ups and adjustments for life..

Thanks
 

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Specialized is in the league of Trek

Meaning they have a huge market share here in the US. Check to see if they have a women specific design. There is also a womens forum here at RBR that might give you better info on WSD bikes. But get measued before buying!
 

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Focus on the bike shop, before really worrying about starting to consider bikes. You need to find a shop that you are comfortable with, test several bikes and in the end, you will just feel most comfortable on one. Have a budget for the deal (total, dont forget about a helmet, maybe a pair of gloves and a pair of cycling shorts). Be clear with them what you are hoping to do ( are you planning on racing, doing an occasional tri, touring or maybe just riding for fitness).
Personally, I don't get too worried about brand of bikes, because so few companies actually make the bikes themselves. They are made by the same, or similar companies, usually in China or Taiwan. I agree, that at times, some models are better values than others, but that is why it is so important to build up a trusting relationship with the bicycle shop, to understand which are good buys. There are a lot of carryover bikes around, and you may be able to save some money by looking for a carryover model. In the end though, test ride a bunch of bikes, and one will just feel "right" to you. Good luck, and feel free ask here for help and advice.
 

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Bike brands

tawanda said:
So i am new to cycling and kinda overwhelmed about all the bikes and different componets that are out there... there is a bike shop near me that i went to the other day... the guy was super nice and shared a lot of info... they sell specialized bikes... i have looked online but dont find much about those bikes... i see a lot of info on TREK beginner bikes...

If you could lend any info to help me make a decision that would be great.... this bike shop fits you for the bike and gives free tune ups and adjustments for life.
Specialized make great bikes, as do Trek, Giant, Bianchi, and a whole bunch of other brands. The thing to recognize is that while there are a lot of different brands, there are really only three brands of components, and once you pick a price point, it gets to be more about finding a good fit and a color scheme that you like.

It sounds like you've found a good shop, so have no fear about getting whatever they have on offer. As a couple of general bits of advice:

1. don't forget to budget for a helmet, bike shorts, bike shoes (if you're getting clipless pedals), bike jersey, and a seat bag, pump, spare tube, water bottles, and maybe gloves.

2. spend more than you think you want to. You're likely at a point in the "value curve" where a few more bucks buys a lot more bike.

Enjoy.
 

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Kerry Irons said:
1. don't forget to budget for a helmet, bike shorts, bike shoes (if you're getting clipless pedals), bike jersey, and a seat bag, pump, spare tube, water bottles, and maybe gloves.

2. spend more than you think you want to. You're likely at a point in the "value curve" where a few more bucks buys a lot more bike.

Enjoy.
those are very good tips. it's worth buying a good pair of shorts over any number of cheap ones. good bike fit + good shorts = happy riding.
 

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Kerry slides in ahead of me again....

Kerry Irons said:
Specialized make great bikes, as do Trek, Giant, Bianchi, and a whole bunch of other brands. The thing to recognize is that while there are a lot of different brands, there are really only three brands of components, and once you pick a price point, it gets to be more about finding a good fit and a color scheme that you like.
Enjoy.
+1 on all this. At a given price point, there's not much difference among bikes--the market's too competitive for anybody to offer hugely better components than another company does. You should focus on fit unless one of the bikes is orange. Then, of course, you buy the orange one.
 

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I am new as well and I have had my specialized dolce for about 3 weeks. I am in love! Specialized makes great bikes for women. I am 100% satisfied and it was worth every penny!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
thats awesome that you love the specialized dolce because that is what i bought yesterday... i am so excited to get out and start riding... thanks to all that replied... i found a great bike shop that i trust and the guy spent like 3 hours with us yesterday...
 

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tawanda said:
So i am new to cycling and kinda overwhelmed about all the bikes and different componets that are out there... there is a bike shop near me that i went to the other day... the guy was super nice and shared a lot of info... they sell specialized bikes... i have looked online but dont find much about those bikes... i see a lot of info on TREK beginner bikes...

If you could lend any info to help me make a decision that would be great.... this bike shop fits you for the bike and gives free tune ups and adjustments for life..

Thanks

Now you did it. Your credit card and finances and free time will never be the same. The bike and the call of the open road that comes with it will be all consuming.

The best advice that I can offer now is to start slow (like the starter rides are 4 to 10 miles every other day for the next few weeks) as you are getting used to your bike. You'll be amazed on how your body starts to adapt to the exercise. You'll also be amazed on how much weight you're going to drop too -- well, I guess I should only speak for myself. I started from zero and dropped 20 pounds the first six weeks I was riding without any major changes to my diet. After I cleaned up my diet, the weight loss really took off.

I think the real things to learn now are a) how to clip in and out of your pedals under all circumstances, b) how to get used to that saddle. Yeah, it's going to be a bit tender the first few times out - you'll notice a difference between your butt being merely used and getting used to it versus actually needing a new saddle because it is painful, c) how to hydrate and fuel over the distances, and d) how to ride a consistent pace and use your gears to make the minor climb adjustments.

Strive for a comfortable consistent cadence - you'll want to ultimately hit in the low 90s on flat stuff but this is going to take a while. Just be happy with 70s or 80s for a RPM cadence and enjoy being out there. The consistent, strong, and high RPM stroke will come with time. when climbing (like steep stuff - 5% to 8% grade) you want your gears in place where you are not mashing -- like 60RPM.

Also, search for a good cycle computer -- one with heart rate and cadence as well as speed and distance functions. These go from under $100 to over $700. Good brands are Cateye, VDO, Sigma, Specialized. Some people like Polar, but it always flaked out for me. The cadillac model is the Garmin Edge 705 (map and route and street level capabilities if you buy the map software, and also records your training -- don't get a 605 or 205 -- you can't add the HR or cadence functions later on).

Along the way, you might need some small adjustments (more bike fit and tweak) and possibly some shims under your cleats to line up your knee properly (look up "Lemond Wedge") to the pedals. Use cleats with float in them.

Also, give yourself a challenge for this summer -- if you train consistently -- and this will give you a goal to strive for -- sign up for a century ride in the July timeframe. Everyone that has been riding for a while on this website remembers the first time they did 100 miles in one sitting. I have been riding for 5 years, started when I was 47 years old, and am amazed everytime that I do 10 miles in one shot. This was my first 100 mile ride in 2005: www.bvbf.org That first ride took me almost 10 hours to complete. The next year I did it in under 6 hours. Every year since then has been stronger.

Look here for a good training program: (scroll down to the table): http://www.ridetherockies.com/rider-area/training/

Then look up rides like Ride the Rockies and the Bicycle Tour of Colorado. (www.bicycletourcolorado.com) These are week long bike rides along some beautiful scenery and some challenging hills. Unlike running, cycling has freebies built into it. If you climb a hill, you get the payoff of going *down* the hill. In Colorado, this can mean pedaling up to the top of a 12,000 foot pass, then enjoying 18 miles of coasting down the other side.

I have to sit out the next few weeks and no big rides this summer. I broke my leg on my 25th day of skiing this year and have to wait for my fibula to knit back together before I can get back on the bike. What I think I actually incurred was a severe case of boomeritis. I hopefully get my regular shoe back (my foot is now in a removable Velcro bot thing) at the end of April and it is a slow climb back to the big miles from there. Maybe I'll tackle the mysteries of my bottom bracket and headset while recuperating.

Send a PM if you want to trade more notes.

Welcome to the tribe of cyclists!

ColoradoVeloDude
Colorado Springs, Colorado
 

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wow Colorado Dude what a great post! As a newbie myself your post is very encouraging and welcoming. I have been a little intimidated to ride with my local bike league, but I think I am going to suck it up and give it a try on Tuesday. Tawanda he is right about how you become hooked. Like I said I have only had my bike 3 weeks and have probably put just under 100 miles on it, it would be more if the weather would cooperate! Once you get past the fear of the clips and get used to the gears (I am still learning) is when I really was hooked. I just can't believe I did not start it sooner! When I get home tomorrow I will post my Dolce and I want to see a pic of yours. I think they called my color charcoal. It is just gorgeous!
 

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WhitneyE said:
wow Colorado Dude what a great post! As a newbie myself your post is very encouraging and welcoming. I have been a little intimidated to ride with my local bike league, but I think I am going to suck it up and give it a try on Tuesday. Tawanda he is right about how you become hooked. Like I said I have only had my bike 3 weeks and have probably put just under 100 miles on it, it would be more if the weather would cooperate! Once you get past the fear of the clips and get used to the gears (I am still learning) is when I really was hooked. I just can't believe I did not start it sooner! When I get home tomorrow I will post my Dolce and I want to see a pic of yours. I think they called my color charcoal. It is just gorgeous!

You are welcome!

When you start to ride with the local cycling tribe, just tell them that you are new when you are introducing yourself. Also tell them - up front - that you might get pooped out and drop off the back and return by yourself to base. This way folks aren't worried about you dropping off mysteriously off the back and wondering if you got picked off the back and dragged off by some troglodyte hiding in the bushes.

You'll be learning quite a bit about your bike, your gears, and your body over the next few weeks. The learning never stops, you'll just be learning more about these three things and subtle nuances every time you go out and ride.

Have fun!

ColoradoVeloDude
Colorado Springs, Colorado
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
so i had my first ride on the katy trail in missouri... it was long and straight but my roomate and i did about 8 miles... It was so much fun and i got the hang of my gears a lot better... i wanna get out a lot this week but rain is in the forecast... i plan on trying to train for the MS bike ride in September and maybe a womens triathelon in august... thanks again for all of your post and help... i will get a pic up sometime this week.
 
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