Advice please - increasing mileage

bigal999
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Joined: 19 Jul 2018, 11:09pm

Advice please - increasing mileage

Postby bigal999 » 1 Aug 2018, 3:21pm

Hi I am returning to cycling after fifty years I am 63.
I want to build up to be able to do the coast to coast next June.
I have been overdoing it a bit and trying to hard so given myself tendonitis in my knees.
Could someone please explain a reasonable training schedule that would get me up to be able to do it in 4 days.
I have been riding 3 weeks now most distance in one day was 10 miles but it was to much to soon.
Finally got bike setup so comfortable to ride and seat height right probably the cause of the tendonitis as seat was to low.
I am riding an old specialized rockhopper pro mountain bike but will be getting a new bike in January sales.
Thanks in advance for any help
Albert

pwa
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Re: Advice please

Postby pwa » 1 Aug 2018, 4:14pm

You have ages, so don't worry about the miles just yet. Just get used to riding often, and make sure your position on the bike is as good as you can get it.

When you feel good on the bike and ten miles feels fine, increase the distance a little sometimes. Eventually you will be okay with twenty miles and you will be close to where you need to be for your target.

When you buy a new bike get one that allows you to replicate the position you have found to be right for you. That is very important. Also get one with very low gears for the hills. Most bikes don't have that.

But again, you have ages so take it easy and build up slowly, refining your position on the bike if necessary. You are a non-cyclist transforming into a cyclist and your body will take time to adapt.

bigal999
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Re: Advice please

Postby bigal999 » 1 Aug 2018, 5:19pm

Can you please suggest a type of bike or even better an exact bike that would be suitable please
Albert

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Re: Advice please

Postby pwa » 1 Aug 2018, 8:55pm

bigal999 wrote:Can you please suggest a type of bike or even better an exact bike that would be suitable please
Albert


Lots of options out there, but I suggest you ask the question in Bikes and Bits. You need to think about your personal needs and wants. Do you need to be able to ride off-road or are you okay limiting your cycling to roads and smooth tracks, for example. If you want to be able to carry spare clothes and food you may want to be able to carry it on the bike rather than on your back. And do you prefer drop bars or straight, or some other bar type?

Others will disagree, but I think if you allow yourself a budget of about £1000 you will have some really good options that could last a long time.https://www.oxfordbikeworks.co.uk/model-1e/

This is just one example of a well thought out bike with no gimmicks and a lot of integrity.

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Re: Advice please - increasing mileage

Postby Vorpal » 1 Aug 2018, 9:18pm

A little and often is good. If you can get out most days, even if it just down to the shops for the paper or something, it's good. Take a little longer ride once or twice a week. You'll soon feel able to do more.

Don't worry about a new bike, yet, but get some slicks, or at least something with minimal tread for your Rockhopper, if you haven't. Big Apples are often recommended on here, but almost any sort of slick or touring tyre that fits on your wheels will be better than MTB tyres. Ask at your local bike shop.
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bogmyrtle
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Re: Advice please - increasing mileage

Postby bogmyrtle » 2 Aug 2018, 7:54am

The thing about getting older is that it takes the body longer to recover from physical exertion. Don't try to keep pushing the mileage upwards. Aim from an achievable plateau and stay there for a while before setting a new plateau. When it comes to planning your coast to coast, split the route up according to your ability. I'm sure you want to enjoy it as well as being an achievement.
A bike does more miles to the banana than a Porsche.

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foxyrider
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Re: Advice please - increasing mileage

Postby foxyrider » 2 Aug 2018, 9:04am

Firstly - allow plenty of time for the knees to recover - when I had a dose some years ago it took several months to get over and return to pain free riding. You can ride at light intensity but don't push things.

Others have suggested different tyres and bike styles which are all good but once your knees are okay again just go out and ride and enjoy it. When you are comfortable just riding for a few miles add a longer ride - maybe 10% extra, into your programme. After a couple of weeks you should be okay with that and you might want to increase the shorter rides.

Slow and steady increases are the way, you'll be up to rides of a couple of hours after a couple of months. I wouldn't consider longer rides until you've sorted out a more suitable bike, you can then think about how far you will need to do in a day over what terrain. Then it's a matter of adding a few miles to a ride once a week over several months.

After illness last year it took me 3 months to get up to 100km, the first month I could barely manage 15km! I'm now happy doing 100km plus rides several times a week across any terrain.

Anyhow, welcome to the wonderful world of wheels!
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NUKe
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Re: Advice please - increasing mileage

Postby NUKe » 2 Aug 2018, 9:28am

The knee issue is possibly to do with gearing, and or seat height, more than distances.
Firstly make sure your seat is not too low. I personally find that 109% of inseam that is crotch to floor, not trouser leg length works for me. A good way to test your seat height, is to put your heel on the pedal in the 5 o’clock position, your Knee should be only slightly bent, sat on the seat, but there are other methods. Gearing new/ returning cyclists tend to push too big a gear. Drop the gear down and spin your legs slightly faster, you will generally find that this will increase rather than decrease your speed and save your knees.
Also make sure that the bike is in good fettle and that the tyre pressure are correct.
I would agree with the comments about building the distance slowly, I would say the way to increase the distance is to take longer, go slightly slower take rests along the way.
Last edited by NUKe on 2 Aug 2018, 4:33pm, edited 1 time in total.
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horizon
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Re: Advice please - increasing mileage

Postby horizon » 2 Aug 2018, 2:42pm

NUKe wrote: Gearing new/ returning cyclists tend to push too big a gear. Drop the gear down and spin your legs slightly faster, you will generally find that this will increase rather than decrease your speed


+1. It feels a bit funny at first and you won't seem like a Tour de France rider as you will be going more slowly but it is the way to do it.
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