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Humility: has this ever happened to you?

Old 08-07-11, 06:23 PM
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Dav305z
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Humility: has this ever happened to you?

It's a nice day of biking in Ann Arbor. My Raleigh Grand Prix is in fine fettle. I'm in fine fettle. Plus I've just bought some toeclips and am relishing in all the extra power suddenly at my disposal. I venture out to buy some green beans for my soup (a fish chowder, if you must know), and flirt a bit with the girl behind the counter (at least I think it's flirting). I'm almost home when some -- how shall I say this -- older gentleman dressed in khakis and wearing a giant backpack nonchalantly blows by me on his hybrid bike. I chase him for a about a quarter of a mile until we mercifully turn separate ways. My lungs and shins feel like they need a vacation.

This ever happened to you? How long do I need to bike before I get to be the guy who leaves people in the dust?
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Old 08-07-11, 06:27 PM
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I guess I am a pretty average cyclist. At age 60 with 100k miles of cumulative experience, I get passed by some, and I pass others. I don't worry much about it.
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Old 08-07-11, 06:39 PM
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Truth be told, I don't like being passed, but I don't find it humbling--I take it as a challenge. Keep chasing until you are the one doing the passing.
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Old 08-07-11, 06:39 PM
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just dont this story to the girl behind the counter
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Old 08-07-11, 06:40 PM
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I am an experienced motorcyclist, and I got passed in the Swiss Alps (down hill of course), by a bicycle. That was the ultimate humiliation to me. I was watching this guy pass everybody coming down that pass (tour buses, cars, other motorcycles, the guy was flying), and by god, he was NOT GOING TO PASS ME! So I wicked it up, and wicked it up some more. Finally I waved him by, no way could I keep up that pace....
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Old 08-07-11, 07:12 PM
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Ok, This is really going to sound pathetic.
I get embarrassed every time My girlfriend and I go on any kind of road ride.
Currently I only have my 28lb Mountain bike (without gear) and big fat knobby mountain bike tires.
She rides a more road friendly Hybrid style bike.
Naturally I can stomp her on flat ground and blast by her and nearly anyone else on downhill sections but when it comes to any serious uphill sections she just cruises to the top while I am huffing and puffing trying to keep up.

Even with my tires pumped to their max I seriously think that I am just applying all my power into moving my tires and heft up the hill.

This led to the purchase of my vintage road bike which I will build over the winter so I will show her who is boss when the tie comes.

I know sounds real tough right?

But serioulsy.
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Old 08-07-11, 07:28 PM
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Originally Posted by John E View Post
I guess I am a pretty average cyclist. At age 60 with 100k miles of cumulative experience, I get passed by some, and I pass others. I don't worry much about it.
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Old 08-07-11, 07:31 PM
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Just how big was this pot of soup?
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Old 08-07-11, 07:40 PM
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Just how big was this pot of soup?
Enormous. And it smells delicious. With more time to consider this disaster, I've come up with the following excuses:

1) I'd already been biking all day.
2) He surely had handlebar shifters, so he was able to downshift and accelerate better.
3) I clearly need to upgrade to cotterless cranks.
4) I clearly need to upgrade to lighter 700c wheels and skinnier tires (currently running on single wall aluminum shod in wide I-want-the-cheapest-greyest-rubber-on-your-shelf Kenda tires).
5) I was not yet used to the clips.

There. Not my fault. Obviously, I need to spend hundreds more on my bike and then I'll be able to absolutely crush Lance Khakipantstrong.
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Old 08-07-11, 07:44 PM
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A couple of years ago, I was out doing my workout, on an Ironman Carbon, no slouch in the road bike department.

I see, way ahead in the shimmering heat, a lone rider. I kick it in and catch him in about a mile. He was on some kind of Cannondale moutain monstrosity with a headset that looked like the triple clamp on a motorcycle. Full rack on the back, and he had no toe clips of any kind, probably 26 x 1.5 road tires, etc. He was lost, so I offer to ride back to town and show him the way. As soon as he realizes where we were, he drops me. I'm working hard, and to no avail.

Two weeks later, I'm out again, see the guy about a 1/4 mile up. Again, I drop the hammer and catch him. He says "I'd ride with you, but you can't keep up."

He shows up at my house one Sunday morning, as I was leaving for church. He had a rattle in his freehub. I tell him "you get 15 minutes," and managed to fix it (needed the thin spacer behind the cassette). I ask him if he wants to ride that day, he says "no, you can't keep up." I ask him how much his bike weighs? 30 lbs.

He's one of those folks who lost about 100lbs in about 6 months while riding a bike. Huge legs, and a will of iron. I failed to mention he carries a cassette walkman, mace, his cell phone, all on the handlebars, and wears Bose noise cancelling headphones, no helmet.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Dav305z View Post
It's a nice day of biking in Ann Arbor. My Raleigh Grand Prix is in fine fettle....I'm almost home when some -- how shall I say this -- older gentleman dressed in khakis and wearing a giant backpack nonchalantly blows by me on his hybrid bike. I chase him for a about a quarter of a mile until we mercifully turn separate ways. My lungs and shins feel like they need a vacation.

This ever happened to you? How long do I need to bike before I get to be the guy who leaves people in the dust?
Not until you have written your 100th post to BF.

Truth be told, we all pass and get passed. The thing is, you never know how far that other guy/gal has already ridden that day or that year or that decade, or how heavy his/her bike is, or what he/she had for breakfast. So you can't take it too seriously either way. It's like being a gunslinger - there's always somebody faster out there.

Either leg strength and aerobic capacity can be a limiting factor. However chasing for only 1/4 mile isn't so very far. It's one thing to ride fast for 100 yards, quite another to do it for 30 minutes or more. And then be able to do it again and again. The key is conditioning and practice and good health and nutrition and all the other stuff that makes a good athlete good. So just ride and have fun and push yourself.

And then one day see if you can pass me!
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Old 08-07-11, 08:13 PM
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Being an old guy in Ann Arbor, I can assure you that you will never pass me on a cottered crank Raleigh. Sometimes it is the bike.

I have a really nice bike I'm getting ready to sell, too small for me. If you can ride a 52 cm, PM me and get a deal of a lifetime.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:18 PM
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That is why I liked whenever I was pulling my kid in a trailer, took me out of the competition.

Although I have to add that my finest cycling triumph was pulling said trailer (w/kid) on W&OD trail a few years back. I was hammering it pretty hard, you'd be surprised how little a trailer slows you down on flat ground, esp. w/trailer tires pumped up a bit. Well, some younger guy, full-on roadie gear, does edge past me, but as he does so he also mutters, "d*mn fast pace for pulling a trailer..".

About 25 years ago, when I was in New London at sub school, me and my roommates were all into cycling, commuting to work, etc. Bruce, who went on to serve on the USS Houston and helped out w/filming of "Hunt For Red October", was just an animal on the cycle, could drop all of us seemingly effortlessly. This was even more incongruous because he was the least into cycling of any of us and was a real big guy and a little bit plump. In no way was he a "cycling enthusiast", he was just doing it because the rest of us were and had picked up a cheap bike somewhere. But he could really smoke people and actually seemed a little unaware of how strongly he could ride.

So, this was bad enough, but...

Remember that "cheap bike"? One day, one of my roommates starts fooling around w/Bruce's bike and notices that the bottom bracket was sort of stiff. Actually, it was really stiff - as in quite hard to turn with your hands, not just a little grindy, the bottom bracket was completely toast adding how many watts of drag I don't know, but it was a lot. But ol' Bruce never seemed to notice....

I still don't feel like I've quite lived that down.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:24 PM
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Originally Posted by bikemanbob View Post
Truth be told, I don't like being passed, but I don't find it humbling--I take it as a challenge. Keep chasing until you are the one doing the passing.
I do this all the time on my bike, it keeps rides more entertaining for me, i'm usually that guy that's just blowing by everyone on the road trails. It's not cause i wanna be a prick or anything, it just seems that my pinarello was not made for going slow, it looks fast and puurdy. So everytime i get on the bike i just want to go fast.

I hate it when someone just flies by me, i'll secretly race and catch up to them and pass them and pretend that i was just riding along with my headphones and blah blah blah. When they pass me i'm usually like "oh hell no". But most of the time i'm doing the passing, maybe i'm an adrenaline junky, i slowed down on my skateboarding a bit this year so i guess i gotta get my rush somewhere.

The funniest is when i pass people on their 4-5000 dollars carbon fibre contraptions in their super tight lycra shirts and shorts and crazy helmets. Usually i'm dressed in baseball cap, my michael jordan basketball jersey sometimes (Red chicago 23 rookie year jersey), normal shorts and jordan low top shoes, on an blue and white pinarello with white tires, saddle and wraps. Pedalling on just normal MKS road pedals with no clips or cages or what soever. Then they catch up to me at a stop light and give me the oddest look or compliment usually it's an odd look .

I can't wear all that cycling gear, i just wear what i feel comfy in. But yes speeding by people is FUN!

Last edited by mapleleafs-13; 08-07-11 at 08:27 PM.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Old Fat Guy View Post
Being an old guy in Ann Arbor, I can assure you that you will never pass me on a cottered crank Raleigh. Sometimes it is the bike.

I have a really nice bike I'm getting ready to sell, too small for me. If you can ride a 52 cm, PM me and get a deal of a lifetime.
OK, you've piqued my interest, but I'm still 13 posts too unworthy to send private messages. Feel free to PM me.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:29 PM
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You mean? Say it ain't so Joe. Its not about the bike? Even a red one?

Go figure.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:34 PM
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Originally Posted by RobbieTunes View Post
A couple of years ago, I was out doing my workout, on an Ironman Carbon, no slouch in the road bike department.

I see, way ahead in the shimmering heat, a lone rider. I kick it in and catch him in about a mile. He was on some kind of Cannondale moutain monstrosity with a headset that looked like the triple clamp on a motorcycle. Full rack on the back, and he had no toe clips of any kind, probably 26 x 1.5 road tires, etc. He was lost, so I offer to ride back to town and show him the way. As soon as he realizes where we were, he drops me. I'm working hard, and to no avail.

Two weeks later, I'm out again, see the guy about a 1/4 mile up. Again, I drop the hammer and catch him. He says "I'd ride with you, but you can't keep up."

He shows up at my house one Sunday morning, as I was leaving for church. He had a rattle in his freehub. I tell him "you get 15 minutes," and managed to fix it (needed the thin spacer behind the cassette). I ask him if he wants to ride that day, he says "no, you can't keep up." I ask him how much his bike weighs? 30 lbs.

He's one of those folks who lost about 100lbs in about 6 months while riding a bike. Huge legs, and a will of iron. I failed to mention he carries a cassette walkman, mace, his cell phone, all on the handlebars, and wears Bose noise cancelling headphones, no helmet.
that's definitely a funny story, i say you dust him on the road next time though, show no mercy. after all that help and he still acts like a prick to you, that's definitely whack.

Also those noise cancelling headphones are amazing!! I use these ones for travelling and for playing cards when i'm out in vegas, they worked great for the WSOP card events. You put these things on and literally can't hear anything around you, on the plane it really helps lower the overall cabin noise in the aircraft, which makes for a really nice flight. i don't use them for biking though, i have a different pair of bose headphones for that.

If you guys are serious into audio check out these :

http://www.bose.ca/controller?event=...942&src=k47942

i would wear these cycling though, they might work tooo well, u might not be able to hear traffic, i just use bose earbuds cause you can still hear stuff around you.

Last edited by mapleleafs-13; 08-07-11 at 09:13 PM.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:43 PM
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So far I've only been dominantly passed by superior technology in similar class of bike a few times. And it was the touring/road bike category. Otherwise I know what to chase with SS/FG and the atb/mtb category where I've held my own. In the road category, I riode a 12 speed touring bike that isn't any match for today's 27 & 30 speeds. Took me a couple of times to figure it out, but the rider was fitter and more serious about cycling at that level. There are a few gears the 12 speed is missing, so it's one or a combination of 3 things. I've either got that gear and the other cyclist is a superior rider. Or I'm trying to pedal more GI that I'm not fit to push at that speed or I'm under geared and simply won't keep up. In any case with SS/FG or slower class of bike, I'm competitive for miles. There have also been times I take the lead against newer technology and never relinquish the lead. Those cases I'm in better shape or maybe they just don't care ?

Once, a woman, I figured to be about 10 years my junior passed me on her roadie as I was riding the SS/FG. I thought I could beat her with fitness. Boy was I wrong on that one. She really didn't even work that hard to get away from me in the first mile we were pacing each other. The SS/FG simply didn't have the GI to keep up. After that I learned that the equipment has to be fairly close for it to be a race. Sometimes when another is setting a challenging pace, it's a good thing to see where you stand in the grand scheme of it all.

Another time, riding the 12 speed, 3 roadies smoked me. I tried to kick it into the highest gear, started to catch up but simply didn't have the legs and stamina to keep that pace for very far. These cyclists were riding carbon bikes, so I figured that it was a combination of fitness & technology that was an ego crushing defeat. That had me thinking it was time to upgrade, then I started pricing similar bikes. I'm perfectly content to take last place for that kind of money ?
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Old 08-07-11, 08:52 PM
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My son almost passed me on his skateboard just this evening, and I was seriously trying to get to the corner before him.
I've never won a race at anything, ever.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:53 PM
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Yes it has.

Unless you can push the 53-16 to a spin for stretches pretty much everytime you're riding, its going to happen to you at some point too.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:59 PM
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I don't mind getting passed at all. I am riding at the pace I want to ride at and that is good enough for me.
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Old 08-07-11, 09:01 PM
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Oh yea i forgot to mention. A cute chick flew by me the other day, and i was going fast not super fast, she had all the gear on and what not (jersey, bike shorts, crazy helmet, waterbottles around her waist, speedometer) and she went by real fast that i was like hmm, i don't know about this one. I was kinda startled and scared that this chick was going so fast, i would say she's one of the 2 "losses" i had in the last week (can't win them all), i caught up with her at a stop light and noticed that she was on a beautiful modern lugged Decor art 2000 ish colnago. I didn't partake in a race against her, i just gave her the win and bowed down because she had an awesome bike

i should've chatted her up about her bike at the stop light, instead of staring at it a little (she may have thought i was checking her out, this may have been true too) , campy record components on the bike, it was awesome and beautiful (and so was she )

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Old 08-07-11, 09:04 PM
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When I used to ride my old Schwinn Mountain bike around at age 15 I was passed by a group of 60 somethings on roadies. I was peddling as fast as I could on that bike and they still passed me with ease. The top speed of that bike was 22MPH on flat land with no wind resistance. I could probably blame that one on the bike but in all honesty I wasn't nor currently am the most fit person of my age. Now I could probably have managed to stay ahead of them with a half decent bike.

OT I know but PLEASE be careful wearing headphones while riding. A soccer coach of mine was killed on a bicycle while riding with some of his friends. His friends tried to warn him of the danger ahead by yelling out to him but he could not hear them. He was struck by an oncoming truck. He left behind a wife, triplets of about age 11 at the time, and a team of young soccer players.
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Old 08-07-11, 09:18 PM
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A few weeks ago I was climbing this pretty serious hill that I had never riden before. I wasnt completely dying but I was in like 1/3 1/4 just spinning away when some guy comes up on my left riding a neon green orbea and just blows past me. he got out of the saddle and powered up this climb like he was on level ground. I just told myself, he probably rides this road all the time, and lives about 1 mile from here so he had fresh legs where as I had already put 25 miles in just to get there...by the time I made the top he was out of sight (he may have turned)
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Old 08-07-11, 09:23 PM
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Originally Posted by iab View Post
You mean? Say it ain't so Joe. Its not about the bike? Even a red one?

Go figure.
Red is faster, but the right bike can be even faster.
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