20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
Paddywan
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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby Paddywan » 4 Apr 2019, 12:37pm

Holy... Such overwhelmingly positive and helpful responses. Thank you all so very much!

Thelawnet: Thank you so much for your incredibly detailed response on looking over used bikes, this is going to be invaluable to me in making a purchase, and for similarly warning me about needing a small chainring, this is potentially something I would have overlooked with the Decathlon bikes that Rotavator suggested.

Thanks for the MTB suggestion Brucey, but after some hours of googling and youtube, it appears that these hybrid/"urban" bikes appear to be more suited to my purposes, and have spent most of my time researching my different options amongst this category. Similarly as the other post that Thelawnet suggestion had mentioned, apparently aluminium frames cope perfectly well with 20 stone of weight, so I think I might allow for this possibility as it dramatically increases the range of bikes available in my search.

Thirdcrank, No, cycling does not equal weight loss, but combined with a negative calorie daily consumption I would assume that the only possible outcome from taking up cycling is to further increase my weight loss. Currently I am consuming double portion of veg, single portion of carbs, and single portion of white fish for dinner plus a single yoghurt in the evenings, and am very strict about my diet & portion control. So far I've lost 5kg and am coming up on -7.5kg this week if the trend follows. I would very much like to combine this with cycling to further accelerate my weight loss & start to get me generally fit & active, as my life currently is for the most part sedentary. I'm not entirely sure how picking up cycling is going to affect my hunger, but I guess this is something I will soon be finding out, and hope I will be able to manage it.

Thank you petee for your kind words. I'm located near Bristol, and am willing to drive 30-50 miles for the right bike. Searching gumtree has revealed some bikes around my area, as well as across the stream in Wales, however I suppose I should be cautious of gumtree posts / any second hand bike sale and double check that bikes aren't stolen.

Vorpal these bikability lessons sound like something I need. Although I drive and am acutely aware of the rules of the road, I feel incredibly anxious about how to cope with lane changes, roundabouts / 3'rd exits. I will endeavour to look into these communities & services.

Thanks for the suggestion Atlas, but I'm not entirely sure there are any non-flashy bikes, they all seem to look flashy in one way or another, but yes, I don't exactly want either myself or the bike to stand out and become a target.

Cugel, you present an interesting point of view, however the price point of these I think is too much for me, and would have to make sacrifices on other equipment to make it work, so for this reason I think I would have to opt against it. Ideally I don't want to spend any more than £300, and anything cheaper is of course an obvious bonus.

Dear all: Your responses have been both enlightening, confusing, conflicting, but similarly make a lot of sense. After researching many terms, figuring out the difference between a sprocket and a chainring, what size bike I would need, what a Hybrid is and why its different to a road bike or a mountain bike, I believe that I am looking for is indeed a Hybrid, but it appears that Steel frame hybrids do indeed limit my options of what bikes there are to choose from, and similarly not all steel bikes appear to come with both disc breaks and high gearing ratios? After much research, and going by the comments from the thread linked by Thelawnet, a 19st. bike rider commented that he has 3 aluminium framed bikes and has never had issue with his weight being mechanically problematic for the bikes. Thus I believe in order to increase the range of available bikes & features I will not stick specifically to a steel framed bike. That being said, I do believe that high gearing is essential to move my mass up hills, and similarly disc breaks are essential to stop my mass from rolling down the hills uncontrollably. I just cannot imagine two little rubber pads on a rim having enough friction to combat the forces of gravity upon my mass, although I may well be mistaken as I have 0 experience of this situation, so please correct my assumption if you have personal experience that suggests otherwise.

As Rotavator suggested, I have taken a look over decathlons website at their hybrids, however I couldn't find a bike which met all requirements. Disc breaks meant no smaller toothed chainring, and similarly having multiple chainrings seems to equate to no disc breaks, so for this reason it seems that I need to look elsewhere. After watching a few youtube video's of recommended hybrid bikes, the brands of Merida and Specialized seemed to crop up frequently, however they are both significantly more pricey than decathlon. After some second-hand searching, it appears that I can pick up a Specialized Crosstrail for anywhere between £250 and £320 as of current gumtree posts which does indeed fit the price point I am looking for, however should i be suspicious of a £250 Specialized vs £320? I don't want to buy a stolen bike. The Merida's on the other hand appear to be Australian imports, and are far more limited in second hand offerings, so it appears that this bike is out of my price range. This is the extent of my research so far, and will continue my search for the right bike for me. Does anyone know of other Hybrid bike brand/models which would be good to investigate given these requirements?

Again, thank you all for your help & input.

Paddywan
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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby Paddywan » 4 Apr 2019, 12:50pm

horizon wrote:
simonhill wrote:Surprised no one has asked about budget.


paddywan wrote:
I've quit smoking,


So basically he can walk into Evans and name his price, so to speak.

"Smoking is expensive and you might be surprised at how it all adds up. On average, most people who quit save around £250 each month. That's nearly £3,000 a year going up in smoke"



Hah, if only it worked this way. I don't suddenly have £3000 available in my account because i quit smoking two weeks ago, in fact its the opposite. I am in a worse position now than before I quit, as I have been focusing on attempting to get myself fit & healthy and to keep myself quit. Clothing, shoes, exercise equipment, matts, weights, nicotine substitutes, fresh veg, fruit & fish is all quickly adding up, however I expect it to start to even out after the initial setup costs for my goals. So no; I have not come in to more money than before as a result of quitting smoking, it is in fact the opposite due to the further changes I am making to my lifestyle.

but to the point: Max budget is £300 in the ideal world. Anything over that is really stretching it considering i'd still need helmet & supposedly shoes & pedals at a minimum (no not those fancy clip things, just want hard soles for my problematic tendons.)

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horizon
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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby horizon » 4 Apr 2019, 1:19pm

Paddywan wrote:H

Thank you petee for your kind words. I'm located near Bristol, and am willing to drive 30-50 miles for the right bike.



One day you'll think nothing of cycling that distance (at least as a round trip). :D
I have two doctors, my left leg and my right leg. (G. M. Trevelyan)
PS I always wondered why the YHA HQ was called Trevelyan House. :)

Brucey
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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby Brucey » 4 Apr 2019, 1:20pm

there are two main reasons for suggesting an older MTB

1) it will be cheaper to buy and

2) it will (all things being equal) be quite a lot stronger if it is fitted with 26" (559) wheels rather than 700C (622) wheels. (Thorn use 26" wheels for their 'expedition tourers' for this reason)


With road-biased tyres fitted 26" wheels roll down the road quite swiftly enough. Since a good portion of average halfords customers don't actually ride their bikes having bought them, there is usually no shortage of virtually unused Carrera subways and the like available on gumtree, for peanuts. You can usually get something like this

Image

for £100 to £150. They are actually pretty good bikes, once they are bolted together properly.

cheers
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Paddywan
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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby Paddywan » 4 Apr 2019, 1:36pm

Brucey wrote:there are two main reasons for suggesting an older MTB

1) it will be cheaper to buy and

2) it will (all things being equal) be quite a lot stronger if it is fitted with 26" (559) wheels rather than 700C (622) wheels. (Thorn use 26" wheels for their 'expedition tourers' for this reason)


With road-biased tyres fitted 26" wheels roll down the road quite swiftly enough. Since a good portion of average halfords customers don't actually ride their bikes having bought them, there is usually no shortage of virtually unused Carrera subways and the like available on gumtree, for peanuts. You can usually get something like this

Image

for £100 to £150. They are actually pretty good bikes, once they are bolted together properly.

cheers


Huh, thats very interesting, I thought that MTB's have full suspension? Seems I still have much to learn, but that is a very reasonable option and it does actually seem to fulfil all the criteria for a significantly lower price. I suppose I would like to have front forks for absorbing any height differential on my travels, however I suppose that is more of a preference than a requirement. I will follow up with your suggestion and will research MTB's as well. Thanks again for your input.

thelawnet
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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby thelawnet » 4 Apr 2019, 1:51pm

Thanks for the MTB suggestion Brucey, but after some hours of googling and youtube, it appears that these hybrid/"urban" bikes appear to be more suited to my purposes, and have spent most of my time researching my different options amongst this category. Similarly as the other post that Thelawnet suggestion had mentioned, apparently aluminium frames cope perfectly well with 20 stone of weight, so I think I might allow for this possibility as it dramatically increases the range of bikes available in my search.


A hybrid bike is essentially a MTB at heart, just perhaps with slightly narrower tyres.

Aluminium can cope with weight the main thing is you want something sturdy, not something fast.

As Rotavator suggested, I have taken a look over decathlons website at their hybrids, however I couldn't find a bike which met all requirements. Disc breaks meant no smaller toothed chainring, and similarly having multiple chainrings seems to equate to no disc breaks, so for this reason it seems that I need to look elsewhere. After watching a few youtube video's of recommended hybrid bikes, the brands of Merida and Specialized seemed to crop up frequently, however they are both significantly more pricey than decathlon. After some second-hand searching, it appears that I can pick up a Specialized Crosstrail for anywhere between £250 and £320 as of current gumtree posts which does indeed fit the price point I am looking for, however should i be suspicious of a £250 Specialized vs £320? I don't want to buy a stolen bike. The Merida's on the other hand appear to be Australian imports, and are far more limited in second hand offerings, so it appears that this bike is out of my price range. This is the extent of my research so far, and will continue my search for the right bike for me. Does anyone know of other Hybrid bike brand/models which would be good to investigate given these requirements?


Decathlon only I think sell MTBs in the style you want

https://www.decathlon.co.uk/rockrider-5 ... 50582.html

MTBs are basically as mentioned not much different from hybrid, the main issue here is the fork is a spring which cannot be meaningfully adjusted to your weight, so it's going to be sitting there sunk on the front of your bike.

What DOES work with weight is something with adjustable pressure, i.e. pneumatic tyres and air forks. A pricier MTB such as this one

https://www.chainreactioncycles.com/vit ... prod173149

has an air fork where you can simply increase the pressure (more air) so that it responds correctly to your weight.

The problems with this is the extra cost to buy, and extra maintenance.

So you will likely want to stick with a rigid bike.

Which excludes the Crosstrail.

I think Brucey already mentioned the Carrera Subway range, though he didn't like the Subway 1 model. TBH it's not bad https://www.halfords.com/cycling/bikes/ ... -22-frames

£250 for a used bike is not a very good deal at all. The problem being is if you aren't competent to fix it up you can take it to a bike shop and then it's £120 for nothing very much (although do check Facebook for local mechanics who will probably service for £30-£40)

At that point a new bike is certainly a better deal.

You need to go lower, and collect

E.g.,

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Carrera-Subw ... 7675.l2557

Sold for £62, looks to be well-kept, meets your needs, add in £30 for a mechanic off FB to take a look at it adjust the gears, and you are in

Paddywan
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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby Paddywan » 4 Apr 2019, 2:13pm

Pneumatic suspension seems beyond my price point, but some ability to absorb shock is better than none, although not strictly necessary I suppose. That rigid bike sold for an incredibly low price, which surely is appealing in itself, however due to how ebay typically works I would be hesitant to pay money for something without seeing it first, and similarly fuel will add up if I must travel multiple medium distances to pick out what i feel suites me best. This carerra option does seem to be more fitting to my price range however, so I'm currently researching these a bit more now, and would likely be able to afford them as new, and similarly for the first decathlon which you posted. Some good points have been raised over my ability to be aware of issues & be capable of repairing pre-owned bikes, so this does leave me wondering if it would be better to bite the bullet and buy a cheap carerra from halfords as new instead. I will keep researching the possibilities.

thelawnet
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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby thelawnet » 4 Apr 2019, 2:31pm

Well you have pneumatic suspension in the form of the tyres. Bigger fatter ones give you more suspension effect than narrow ones. So you aren't by any means riding 'rigid', despite the name.

slowster
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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby slowster » 4 Apr 2019, 3:14pm

Here's my twopennyworth:

1. This forum is populated by keen cyclists, who enjoy cycling and think it's great. Whilst it might be a good form of exercise for you (non-load bearing, gentle rotational movement (as opposed to impact), and you can ride slowly and use gears to allow you to control the intensity), it's possible that you might end up deciding you don't even like cycling. There's nothing wrong with that, and it might only be something which you do for a short time to help you improve fitness and lose weight, whereupon you might give it up because you prefer a different activity. For example, you instead might prefer running once you have lost sufficient weight and are in a position to start running. Equally it's possible that you might find you enjoy cycling a lot and it becomes one of your main leisure activities. Another possibility is that you end up continuing to ride a bike not because you particularly like it, but for the same reason that most people on this planet ride a bike: it's a very cheap and very convenient form of transport to get to work, the shops, university, the pub, your friends etc.

You don't know into which of these catagories you might end up falling, and for now it's best to get a cheap and cheerful bike. A used MTB in decent condition like Brucey sugggests would be ideal, but equally a basic hybrid should do, or for that matter a utility bike (e.g. Decathlon's City and Commuter range). To begin with the most important thing is that whatever bike you get fits and is reasonably comfortable, and any of these three types/categories of bikes would probably be adequate for whatever cycling you do initially while you develop fitness and lose weight. However, each of them is a bit better suited to some types of cycling.

For example, if you like to ride off road on bridleways and tracks, the MTB will be better suited. Hybrids and utility bikes can cope with towpaths and tracks that are in good condition, but once you start to ride on rougher tracks, the MTB wins. If you want to cover long distances on the road, then the hybrid is likely to be better (it's essentially a flat barred touring bike). If you want to use the bike mainly as a runabout for riding around town, going to work, going to the shops etc., a utility bike will probably be better (the more upright position gives a better vision of traffic and the bike is typically fitted with the accessories you need, like mudguards, luggage carrying capability and lights).

You could modify an MTB by adding things like a rack, panniers, lights, mudguards etc., but that increases cost. Moreover, modern MTBs with suspension are often difficult/impossible to fit mudguards to (whereas rigid fork MTBs, like the one in Brucey's photograph, may have the eyelets to allow mudguards to be fitted).

The mudguards issue is likely to be an important one. You would be starting to ride at the perfect time of the year, i.e. spring. The weather is only going to get warmer and drier for the coming months, during which time a lack of mudguards may not be a concern. However, when the road is wet (and bridlepths are muddy), riding without mudguards can be miserable. In your shoes I would make sure that whatever bike you choose either had mudguards fitted, or could definitely be fitted with full mudguards.

2. Easy does it. You've already incurred an injury/pain in trying walking. For many people the biggest mistake when they decide to get fit and lose weight, having not exercised previously, is that they overdo it and end up with an injury. Seeing initial improvements in fitness and weight loss is often a spur to do more exercise in order to increase the fitness and weight loss, which frequently does not work and ends up causing injury or "burn out" and loss of any pleasure in the activity. The key to getting fit with any activity is to enjoy it for its own sake. If you have to force yourself to go out on the bike every time, it almost certainly won't work. So whatever cycling you end up doing, you need to enjoy it and find it convenient/pleasurable.

3. If you ride regularly, even if you just ride to work and back, you probably will lose weight without conciously trying. My own experience was that when I started cycling again after a long break, I was ravenously hungry after each ride for several weeks. I craved very sweet food/drink when I got back, and so would have a coke, cake or biscuits because I figured my body needed the sugar. Eventually I found that the craving for sugar ceased (my body had adapted to the repeated exercise and was probably burning more fat for fuel), and I would just have a normal meal or snack instead when I got back. During that time I lost weight without trying and without ever looking at a pair of scales. I would advise you not to keep weighing yourself (or using computers or Strava to measure your speed or performance). Just focus on enjoying yourself when riding. There's nothing wrong with riding out to a pub or to a cafe for coffee and cake, and they often greatly add to the pleasure of a ride.

Good luck.

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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby Vorpal » 4 Apr 2019, 3:26pm

Paddywan wrote:Vorpal these bikability lessons sound like something I need. Although I drive and am acutely aware of the rules of the road, I feel incredibly anxious about how to cope with lane changes, roundabouts / 3'rd exits. I will endeavour to look into these communities & services.
Many bike hubs & similar groups also have used bikes for sale, workshops wherre you can learn basic repair skills, etc. Some local authorities offer free Bikeability courses. But you can also find providers from the Bikeability site https://bikeability.org.uk/find-a-course-provider/
Paddywan wrote: That being said, I do believe that high gearing is essential to move my mass up hills, and similarly disc breaks are essential to stop my mass from rolling down the hills uncontrollably. I just cannot imagine two little rubber pads on a rim having enough friction to combat the forces of gravity upon my mass, although I may well be mistaken as I have 0 experience of this situation, so please correct my assumption if you have personal experience that suggests otherwise.
The gearing you want, we usually refer to as low, where a big chain ring, like the pros use is 'high'. As far as disk brakes versus rim brakes goes, if they are set up correctly, those little rubber pads (4, actually) are perfectly capable of stopping you. My tandem has rim brakes, and I have hauled two kids & camping gear with it. Similarly, I've loaded the trailer with cat litter & hauled it home. Disk brakes have the advantage of being somewhat easier to use. If you visit a shop you can try bikes with different sorts of braking systems, and see what you think.
Paddywan wrote:As Rotavator suggested, I have taken a look over decathlons website at their hybrids, however I couldn't find a bike which met all requirements. Disc breaks meant no smaller toothed chainring, and similarly having multiple chainrings seems to equate to no disc breaks, so for this reason it seems that I need to look elsewhere. After watching a few youtube video's of recommended hybrid bikes, the brands of Merida and Specialized seemed to crop up frequently, however they are both significantly more pricey than decathlon. After some second-hand searching, it appears that I can pick up a Specialized Crosstrail for anywhere between £250 and £320 as of current gumtree posts which does indeed fit the price point I am looking for, however should i be suspicious of a £250 Specialized vs £320? I don't want to buy a stolen bike. The Merida's on the other hand appear to be Australian imports, and are far more limited in second hand offerings, so it appears that this bike is out of my price range. This is the extent of my research so far, and will continue my search for the right bike for me. Does anyone know of other Hybrid bike brand/models which would be good to investigate given these requirements?

'hybrid' means it is in between a road bike and mountain bike, and some are more road bike like & some are more mountain bike like. In any case, a mountain bike easily becomes a 'hybrid' with some smooth tyres on it.

If I were helping a friend or family member in a similar situation, what I would suggest:
-suspension at your weight and price point is not likely to be durable. If you can find a bike without it, I would say that avoiding suspension is more important than getting disk brakes.
-make sure you get a bike with a cassette hub in the rear, and not a freewheel; some cheap bikes have screw-on freewheels that are not durable

An older steel framed mountain bike would be what I would look for, but I say that knowing that I am capable of assessing it's condition and how much work it will require. If you have a friend or family member that knows bikes, get some help or take them with when you look at bikes, especially used ones. If you don't have anyone like that, and you find something you think may be suitable post it on here for comment.

As someone said above, a first bike is a learning experience. But you don't want to learn that you bought a piece of junk, either!

If you are buying second hand, you can check if it has been reported stolen on Stolen Bikes https://stolen-bikes.co.uk/

p.s. other people have posted while I've been writing this, with some similar information
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

eileithyia
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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby eileithyia » 4 Apr 2019, 3:39pm

Hello and welcome.
As you have probably found out there are as many opinions as people on the forums.

With £300 budget i would look at Decathlon you get a lot of bang for buck and the options to have it serviced.
If you are unsure what you are buying you could buy something that requires some upgrading / sorting out of worn components which will quickly eat into your budget / take you over.

Try out Bikeability as already suggested to give you some confidence.

There is no reason why you should not loose weight as you take up cycling, the very fact you are increasing your activity (as am assuming as well excess calories some lack of activity have helped pile on the pounds), many of us are long term experienced cyclists and as such are very efficient at burning fuel / require a lot less calories than we sometimes assume we need for a cycle ride.... I certainly have to be very cuatious what I eat at cafes if I do not wish to put the pounds on.

Good \luck
I stand and rejoice everytime I see a woman ride by on a wheel the picture of free, untrammeled womanhood. HG Wells

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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby PH » 4 Apr 2019, 3:46pm

Good luck, plenty of decent advice here, I started adult cycling on a cheap steel MTB and it was fine for the first few months (Would have been longer if it hadn't been pinched) No reason you shouldn't get plenty of value for the budget you have, find a way to use it to replace some other transport need and bikes quickly pay for themselves.
I struggle with weight, which tends to fluctuate depending on what else is going on in my life. As you probably know losing it is easier than keeping it off and cycling can be more useful in maintaining the loss than achieving it. What works for me is to keep the same calorie deficit weather cycling or not and if I ride add 30 calories per mile to my intake. That assumes you're recording and weighing everything you eat, which for me is the only way it works. Another good thing about cycling is that it gives you the incentive and rewards, a little bit fitter and a little bit lighter and that hill become a lot easier and more fun, and those gains come quick so you want to keep at it. If you find the right club or group to ride with can help, they're not all into racing, there's several groups local to me where you'd be welcome including the local CTC Member Group.
EDIT - it's probably already been said, but don't overdo it. It can be fun to push yourself to the limit from time to time, but you also need to factor in the time to recover. 10 short rides can be more beneficial than 1 long one, when I was building my mileage up I'd ride 2 or 3 time a day, but rarely for longer than an hour.

Paddywan
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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby Paddywan » 4 Apr 2019, 3:55pm

Wow, some very thoughtful points here. As for my motivation, I NEED to lose weight and NEED to get active to improve my physical well being as well as my mental well being. With running out of the question for now, and swimming having me hate myself at the thought of it, I see cycling as one of the few options left to me, and will hopefully come to enjoy the experience, but who knows what the future holds. Regardless, your comment on this topic is incredibly insightful and broad in terms of possibility. Your caution has been noted.

I would indeed like to cycle off-road, I feel there is less severe danger on tracks than roads. Small chance of death but larger chance of minor injury I suppose. I think you also raise some very good points in regards to the mud guards, this is something I have not considered up until now, but is something I believe will be required for me to commit to this activity for the majority of the year.

In regards to my injury, yes you are indeed correct. I am all to aware now of how poorly my body has been treated, I will endeavour to start this activity with low intensity and slowly build my way up to burning off my fat, and enjoying the experience while I'm doing it. Thank you for reinforcing this point that it shouldn't solely be for a means to an end. I must say I do like the idea of it, but still have no experience so am unable to judge any enjoyment as of yet. I guess I just need to try it and find out.

As for consciously trying to lose weight, unfortunately I am at a point in my life where this is my only option, and my GP agree's. I have a moderate amount of mental / depressive behaviours & thoughts, lack of confidence in my own abilities and my GP agree's that counselling / talking therapies & courses alongside a more active lifestyle and less time behind the computer screen is likely my best course of action in order to increase my motivation in life in general & to help me "get back on my bike" and secure the career that I want, but don't have. This is my ultimate goal, and cycling is just one tool I will be using to achieve this, but as you have put so well, I hope that this will be something I soon come to love, enjoy, and depend upon.

Thanks for your incredibly well written and insightful post. I have much to think about slowster.

Thank you Vorpal for clearing up my misconceptions. I will take the comments on board and try and find something suitable, although knowing that its possible to acquire something suitable to my needs as new, I might opt for this option to prevent the possibility of my noobishness overlooking something that should have been obvious to the more experienced. And unfortunately no, I do not have anyone who can vet a purchase for me, which is why I am posting here. I'll definitely ask for comments before I decide to purchase.

eileithyia, I have indeed been looking into Decathlon's MTB's at greater detail, and will take a look at their rigid frames. They seem to be a very reasonable option for me to avoid requiring knowledge on wear & tear.

thirdcrank
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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby thirdcrank » 4 Apr 2019, 4:09pm

There's nothing better than cycling to achieve all your aims above. It's one of the few forms of regular exercise that can be combined with doing something useful like travel. Not necessarily travelling big distances but things like doing a bit of local shopping or commuting, if it's not too far to your place of work. It can do wonders for the mind: I always used to say that after a busy day at work, the first few pedal turns had the brains rinsed out by circulating blood. Not even slightly scientific but it's right, one way or another. Self-esteem ditto.

Take it steady to begin with. You will quickly find out what suits you. As a cyclist, I've often been approached by colleagues wanting to take it up and, unfortunately, by those who shelled out on a bike, went at it like a bull in a china shop then packed it in. Cycling is as hard as you make it. Gently does it till you get used to it.

simonhill
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Re: 20st. mid-20's Beginner "cyclist" looking for advice on where to start

Postby simonhill » 4 Apr 2019, 4:34pm

I note in the long list of credits above, my suggestion to go to a bike recycling scheme was ignored.

Let me reiterate it. You can get some good bikes at good prices with good advice. Plus you will probably be doing some good. What's to lose. There are a few such schemes around the Bristol area, just try googling "Bristol bike recycling project" to get a list.

Here is one to start with https://thebristolbikeproject.org/our-s ... uy-a-bike/

Also, if you buy a fairly basic bike to get started you can always chop in in for something better and maybe more suitable once you know what more suitable is for you.