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Walking up hills

Old 07-20-11, 10:38 PM
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dsprehe89
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Walking up hills

I know this sounds pathetic, but do any of you ever just walk you SS/FG up hills instead of just forcing through?

I just last week started commuting to school (16 miles one way) and there are 2 hills that are probably close to 25-40% grade slopes (one is much steeper but shorter) and one is about 150ft long and the other is closer to 400ft long. My SS is a 53:18 gearing and I can only seem to make it about half way up both of these hills.

Have any of you ever ran into a situation like this? Is it even doable with my gearing?

Also, I weigh 240lb. I'm loosing weight now that I am riding, but I know this also makes it harder for me.
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Old 07-20-11, 10:40 PM
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htfu.
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Old 07-20-11, 10:45 PM
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Keep at it.
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Old 07-20-11, 10:45 PM
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Try a lower gear?
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Old 07-20-11, 10:47 PM
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53x18 is in the high 70's gear-inch wise. Low 70's is what most people prefer (at least those that aren't trying to sound cool on the internet).

What sort of bike do you have? Why is your chain-ring so large? Conversion?

I'm proud to say I've never walked up a hill, but that's because

A. Getting off the bike is as much of a PITA as riding up the hill is.

B. If I know I can't climb something in my current condition (drunk/asleep/tired) I take a flatter route.

I'd recommend getting a 46t chainring, and also htfu. Congrats on beginning to lose weight!
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Old 07-20-11, 10:47 PM
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Originally Posted by UCF Eric View Post
Try a lower gear?
I want to, but I love the feeling of being able to just cruse comfortably at 20+mph on the flats.
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Old 07-20-11, 10:49 PM
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you should try telegraph hill in sf
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Old 07-20-11, 10:51 PM
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Originally Posted by rustybrown View Post
htfu.
Not to be an ass, but yeah.
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Old 07-20-11, 10:54 PM
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How sweaty do you arrive to class after a 16 mile ride in the July sun
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Old 07-20-11, 10:56 PM
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Originally Posted by hamish5178 View Post
53x18 is in the high 70's gear-inch wise. Low 70's is what most people prefer (at least those that aren't trying to sound cool on the internet).

What sort of bike do you have? Why is your chain-ring so large? Conversion?

I'm proud to say I've never walked up a hill, but that's because

A. Getting off the bike is as much of a PITA as riding up the hill is.

B. If I know I can't climb something in my current condition (drunk/asleep/tired) I take a flatter route.

I'd recommend getting a 46t chainring, and also htfu. Congrats on beginning to lose weight!
It was a really cheap conversion. It is a late 80's Raleigh Capri.

I guess I'll just keep riding until I can make it.
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Old 07-20-11, 10:58 PM
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Originally Posted by rustybrown View Post
htfu.
+1
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Old 07-20-11, 11:07 PM
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Originally Posted by hamfoh View Post
How sweaty do you arrive to class after a 16 mile ride in the July sun
Fortunately, I am already done with summer classes, I work on campus though. I was able to ring out my shirt when I got home today though if that is any idea of how bad it is!
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Old 07-20-11, 11:10 PM
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Bro, I'm in the deep south. My sentiments remain.
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Old 07-20-11, 11:14 PM
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Originally Posted by rustybrown View Post
Bro, I'm in the deep south. My sentiments remain.
I wasn't complaining about the heat or sweating. I was just answering the question.

Personally, I love the heat. It was 99 here today with a heat index of around 105+ and I loved every minute of my ride. If you aren't sweating or sore it isn't worth it!
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Old 07-21-11, 12:16 AM
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they make bicycles with multiple gears so you dont have to walk uphill or force through anything.
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Old 07-21-11, 12:27 AM
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Originally Posted by dsprehe89 View Post
I want to, but I love the feeling of being able to just cruse comfortably at 20+mph on the flats.
Do you think you can have a comfortable gear for hill climbing and a comfortable gear for cruising the flats? Seriously. You know that's not how it works, right?

Since you won't change the machine (by changing the gear) then you will have to change the engine...either by getting strong enough to climb on a large gear or by learning to spin a smaller gear on the flats.

My suggestion would be to put on a feasible climbing gear and learn to spin at a higher cadence.

You asked for help...well we've offered it. Now it's up to you to listen to it. There have been lots of threads lately of people asking for help then getting PO'd because the consensus is something that they don't want to do. Are you going to be like that?
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Old 07-21-11, 12:29 AM
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SIU-Edwardsville? I'm moving to Carbondale in 2 weeks for graduate school at SIU-Carbondale. Looking forward to the riding there since Giant City State Park is so close, but I've seen some hills that look discouraging.
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Old 07-21-11, 12:31 AM
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Originally Posted by rustybrown View Post
htfu.
+1
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Old 07-21-11, 01:03 AM
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Sometimes I have to walk halfway up this one hill on my ride home. I make it more often than not, but my lung capacity (that's what gets me, not legs, I run out of breath) isn't enough due to a few pulmonary embolisms that I am in recovery from.

That said, if you don't want to change your gearing, then I say go as hard as you can, as far as you can, and then you'll be able to do it. I know that more than half of it is mental. If I am coming up on the hill, telling myself I can't do it, odds are, I can't do it. But, if I am mentally tough and refuse to quit, then I make it at 10ish mph.
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Old 07-21-11, 06:05 AM
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I'm 6'4, around 230 and i just started riding a bike after god knows how many years. My short 3 week recent riding experience has shown me that while you may not be able to do it now , you will be able to do it in time. It's all a matter of conditioning. If you want to puss out and not push yourself, you aren't going to see the results you want. You've got to push through the tough times in order to really be able to conquer the obstacles in your path.

I've got a straight uphill climb 300ft from my house that lasts around 12 blocks and 3 weeks ago, i could barely hack it. But after some perseverance, i can ride halfway up on my SS sitting down.
Power through it, walk it when you absolutely cant take it.
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Old 07-21-11, 07:36 AM
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25 - 40 % grade ? Are you kidding ? If that's really true, and I rather doubt it, then you won't get up it on anything but a geared bike with a granny gear, especially if you need to haul 240 lbs up it. And to all the rest of you guys telling the OP to htfu, I say liars
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Old 07-21-11, 07:41 AM
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That's kind of what I was thinking, 40 % grade is nuts.

OP do a map my ride so we can get a better estimate of the size of the hill.
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Old 07-21-11, 08:41 AM
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Old 07-21-11, 09:10 AM
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Originally Posted by TejanoTrackie View Post
25 - 40 % grade ? Are you kidding ? If that's really true, and I rather doubt it, then you won't get up it on anything but a geared bike with a granny gear, especially if you need to haul 240 lbs up it. And to all the rest of you guys telling the OP to htfu, I say liars
I for one just automatically assumed he was exaggerating. I imagine others did the same.
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Old 07-21-11, 09:19 AM
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If I take the track bike out, I need to walk the last three blocks (of a 8 block hill) on the ride home. 48x18 (way too high). My other bike is 38x17 and it is still a workout.
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