Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Fifty Plus (50+)
Reload this Page >

Need suggestions to make my wife faster

Notices
Fifty Plus (50+) Share the victories, challenges, successes and special concerns of bicyclists 50 and older. Especially useful for those entering or reentering bicycling.

Need suggestions to make my wife faster

Old 11-02-19, 01:01 PM
  #26  
OldsCOOL
Senior Member
 
OldsCOOL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: northern michigan
Posts: 12,810

Bikes: '77 Colnago Super, '76 Fuji The Finest, '88 Cannondale Criterium, '86 Trek 760, '87 Miyata 712

Mentioned: 17 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 536 Post(s)
Liked 250 Times in 133 Posts
I will give a big shout out for those Vuelta Corsa Lite’s. They will do much better than anything Bontrager. However, tires can negate this if you choose a heavier and rolling resistant tire. Michelins rock in that department.

I will echo the need to track your rides and thumbs up for Strava, it’s fun, motivating and accurate enough to check your results on any given course including one of your own making (like the 11mi course you like).
OldsCOOL is offline  
Old 11-02-19, 04:12 PM
  #27  
ridingfool
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 223
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 74 Post(s)
Liked 15 Times in 13 Posts
Originally Posted by RoMad View Post
Most of you are missing my point. Telling me she needs to train more, you can’t buy fast, etc. If some bikes weren’t faster than others we would all be still riding steel Schwinns. She rides the same route, the same fitness, and she is going slower on one bike than the other. The Trek is definitely slower than the Litespeed.
My question really boils down to “how can I mechanically make the Trek a little faster”?
Better Wheelset and get the stem as low as u can get it and make sure it is a good fit
ridingfool is offline  
Old 11-02-19, 04:15 PM
  #28  
JohnDThompson 
Old fart
 
JohnDThompson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Appleton WI
Posts: 20,964

Bikes: Several, mostly not name brands.

Mentioned: 125 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1938 Post(s)
Liked 273 Times in 192 Posts
Get a tandem.
JohnDThompson is offline  
Old 11-02-19, 04:24 PM
  #29  
wphamilton
Senior Member
 
wphamilton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Alpharetta, GA
Posts: 14,852

Bikes: Nashbar Road

Mentioned: 70 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2691 Post(s)
Liked 140 Times in 95 Posts
How do you know that it's not a perception thing, since you don't use computers and I presume you haven't used Strava? It might just feel slower because the Domane rides more smoothly (which is their reputation).

Also, tires make a perceptible difference in my experience.
wphamilton is offline  
Old 11-02-19, 10:57 PM
  #30  
TheDudeIsHere
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Posts: 467
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 184 Post(s)
Liked 262 Times in 157 Posts
Originally Posted by wphamilton View Post
How do you know that it's not a perception thing, since you don't use computers and I presume you haven't used Strava? It might just feel slower because the Domane rides more smoothly (which is their reputation).
I say this! My wife went from an old steel Bianchi to a full carbon Trek (OCLV). She rode the carbon then said, "Meh, the steel feels faster and more lively and is a better ride!".

No she had never heard the steel is real thing.

But according to the bike computer and Strava, her times are better on the carbon even though she says the ride is not as nice.

Yes, we put good tires on it so that was even with the nice tires. Same tire model on the steel bike.
TheDudeIsHere is offline  
Old 11-02-19, 11:42 PM
  #31  
Miele Man
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 2,852

Bikes: Miele Latina, Miele Suprema, Miele Uno SL, Miele MTB, Bianchi Model Unknown, Fiori Venezia, VeloSport Adamas AX

Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 634 Post(s)
Liked 244 Times in 170 Posts
Originally Posted by wphamilton View Post
How do you know that it's not a perception thing, since you don't use computers and I presume you haven't used Strava? It might just feel slower because the Domane rides more smoothly (which is their reputation).

Also, tires make a perceptible difference in my experience.
Probably because there's a FOUR MINUTES difference between the times on the old bike and on the new bike.

Could it be that there's more drag on the axle assembly on the wheels of the new bike?
Are the handlebars the same width? Are the brake levers the same distance apart?

Cheers
Miele Man is offline  
Old 11-03-19, 05:35 AM
  #32  
nomadmax 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: SW Ohio
Posts: 1,237
Mentioned: 87 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 533 Post(s)
Liked 462 Times in 251 Posts
What's four minutes in the life of a recreational cyclist? If there isn't a race leader jersey involved, a workout is a workout. Reset all the wife's PRs with the new equipment and call it good.
nomadmax is offline  
Old 11-03-19, 08:17 AM
  #33  
Steve B.
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: South shore, L.I., NY
Posts: 3,779

Bikes: Flyxii FR322, Cannondale Topstone, Miyata City Liner, Specialized Chisel

Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1359 Post(s)
Liked 153 Times in 120 Posts
Originally Posted by nomadmax View Post
What's four minutes in the life of a recreational cyclist? If there isn't a race leader jersey involved, a workout is a workout. Reset all the wife's PRs with the new equipment and call it good.
Well, I can sympathize with the OP trying to solve a problem his wife has noted and I wouldn’t have wanted to plunk down a chunk of change on a new bike only to find out it’s seemingly slower and takes more effort to ride. That would annoy me. I still think it’s a fit issue.
Steve B. is offline  
Old 11-03-19, 08:34 AM
  #34  
late
Senior Member
 
late's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Southern Maine
Posts: 8,579
Mentioned: 108 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9313 Post(s)
Liked 41 Times in 37 Posts
Process of elimination.

First step is a professional bike fit. If you can, get an expensive, thorough one. A lot of bike shops can throw a good fit together on the cheap, but a lot of them can't.

I don't think this happened by accident. Likely she changed bikes because she wasn't comfy, and now she is. The more upright position is likely costing a minute or two.

No one has mentioned tires, and the ones she has now may be fine. But google up the rolling resistance of tires and see if you can't get her better. When I say that, I don't mean narrow.

Another thing I'd suggest is coming up with some other rides. One ride?? I'd go nuts. How about a long, leisurely ride on weekends? That's a form of base training, and could bring her speed up.

One last thought is the saddle. I'm a big fan of Selle Anatomica saddles because they move with you. The speed difference is prob trivial, but I feel faster.

Lastly, patience. She may have simply found her groove. That can change with time. I have the same situation with my wife. I have to do rides without her occasionally.
late is offline  
Old 11-03-19, 08:40 AM
  #35  
Digger Goreman
Senior Member
 
Digger Goreman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Decatur, GA (Metro Atlanta, East)
Posts: 397

Bikes: 1995 Trek 800 Sport, aka, "Frankentrek"

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 126 Post(s)
Liked 104 Times in 71 Posts
(Totally kidding): ummm, shave her legs....

(dives into the foxhole anyway)
Digger Goreman is offline  
Old 11-03-19, 08:56 AM
  #36  
Fatter Frank
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Location: Iowa
Posts: 24

Bikes: 2020 Specialized Roll Elite 2015 Trek Verve 3

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Liked 12 Times in 7 Posts
Totally kidding.

Go ride the woods, tease a bear or two.

Start looking at younger models.

Up her allowance.

Seriously.

Study aero. Compare gearing, including tire circumference. Compare tires.
Fatter Frank is offline  
Old 11-03-19, 12:34 PM
  #37  
wphamilton
Senior Member
 
wphamilton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Alpharetta, GA
Posts: 14,852

Bikes: Nashbar Road

Mentioned: 70 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2691 Post(s)
Liked 140 Times in 95 Posts
Originally Posted by Miele Man View Post
Probably because there's a FOUR MINUTES difference between the times on the old bike and on the new bike.

Could it be that there's more drag on the axle assembly on the wheels of the new bike?
Are the handlebars the same width? Are the brake levers the same distance apart?

Cheers
At least that's something, but there are a lot of things that can cause a 4 minute difference between a couple of rides, that can't be blamed on the bikes.

The point I'm making is that if you try to correct a problem, and if that problem isn't what you think or assume that it is, you're very likely to fail. It's not snark that impression of speed correlates poorly with actual speed - it's more common than not, for those of us who do not race and train for races and utilize devices to calibrate those perceptions.

My perspective is of an engineer, a troubleshooter in some of my phases. Accurately identify the problem first, with objective, quantified A-B comparisons if possible. Identify all of the differences in the two systems. Just trying to "make the bike faster" is likely to result in what I call the "shotgun approach" - randomly trying everything to see what works. It usually doesn't.
wphamilton is offline  
Likes For wphamilton:
Old 11-03-19, 04:38 PM
  #38  
RoMad
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
RoMad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Citrus county Fl.
Posts: 786

Bikes: Litespeed Tuscany , Lemond Poprad, 1970's Motobecane Grand Record

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Okay everyone, thanks for the replies.
to answer a few comments. We don’t only ride one ride but we do ride the 22 mile route a lot. My wife rides 4 to 5 days a week when we are not traveling and when we travel we take our hybrids on the back of the camper so we can still ride.
today I sat the two bikes side by side and took some measurements. I was surprised at how close the frames were to each other.
the main difference I found is that the stem on the Litespeed is a little longer and it angles down more which would make her more aerodynamic.
also the Trek has a compact crank and the Litespeed doesn’t. She says the Trek is harder to pedal, but that may be due to wind resistance.
The Litespeed wheels weigh 1440 grams and the Treks weigh 2280 grams according to a Trek rep I talked to.
The Litespeed has 23mm Continental gator skins and the Trek has 25 mm Bontrager R1’s.
Today when we rode she rode slower than normal and said she was just enjoying the weather and the day.
I showed her the difference in the handlebar locations and said I could make the Trek match the Litespeed.
She thought about that for a few seconds and said

Here they are side by side
Don’t do anything to it”.

Last edited by RoMad; 11-03-19 at 04:42 PM.
RoMad is offline  
Old 11-03-19, 05:35 PM
  #39  
Steve B.
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: South shore, L.I., NY
Posts: 3,779

Bikes: Flyxii FR322, Cannondale Topstone, Miyata City Liner, Specialized Chisel

Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1359 Post(s)
Liked 153 Times in 120 Posts
840 gram difference on the wheels ?, not including the tires ?. That’s about 1.4 lbs and is likely something she might notice, just getting up to speed. More effort in that, but in truth, I’d buy a scale and measure the wheels plus tires to see if those numbers are real.
Steve B. is offline  
Old 11-03-19, 07:01 PM
  #40  
DrIsotope
Non omnino gravis
 
DrIsotope's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: SoCal, USA!
Posts: 7,635

Bikes: Nekobasu, Pandicorn

Mentioned: 114 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4234 Post(s)
Liked 755 Times in 458 Posts
Over 2kg for a road wheelset is pretty much boat anchor heavy. I haven't tried to shave grams with any of my wheelsets, yet they are all under 1,600g.

Now if the Trek spec is the wheelset with tires mounted, that would make more sense.
__________________
DrIsotope is offline  
Old 11-03-19, 09:50 PM
  #41  
Carbonfiberboy 
just another gosling
 
Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Everett, WA
Posts: 15,614

Bikes: CoMo Speedster 2003, Trek 5200, CAAD 9, Fred 2004

Mentioned: 96 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2094 Post(s)
Liked 200 Times in 156 Posts
I doubt wheel weight has anything to do with it. Even bike weight makes very little difference to average speed. My guess is that it has something to do with road feel to her. Try switching wheels and tires. Those have a lot to do with road feel. The other thing which would totally make her faster is to put on a slammed -17° stem, and check to see that her upper arms are at a 90° angle with her torso when on the hoods. That'd be the right stem length. Aero trumps almost everything for average speed. Bars have to be well below saddle to get aero. But that has nothing to do with comparative speed difference between bikes, only absolute speed. There's nothing to prevent any healthy person under 80 from riding an aero position which couldn't be fixed with a little stretching every morning.

Also, you could put on a set of Conti 5000 tires. Those Gator Skins are horrible for rolling resistance. I haven't seen any RR numbers for the R1 but the Contis will be faster. She'd notice that, for sure. I also doubt there's a measurable difference between 23mm and 25mm.

The nasty thing in the background is frame feel. Some people have a real affinity for a particular frame feel. It's entirely possible that for your wife, the Litespeed's frame is her thing, and the Trek's is not. I've had friends buy very expensive, custom high end rigs, and find them slower than their old steel frame. It's a real thing.
__________________
Results matter
Carbonfiberboy is online now  
Old 11-04-19, 05:50 AM
  #42  
zacster
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Brooklyn NY
Posts: 6,544
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 22 Post(s)
Liked 101 Times in 79 Posts
I doubt those Trek wheels are that heavy myself, but they will be heavier than 1440g. I feel wheel weight when I ride but I can't say for sure they make me faster or slower. I'd say to just swap the wheels but you have a compatibility problem with the 9 vs. 11 speed.

My own theory would be that she's just enjoying the new ride, getting comfortable on it, trying to enjoy it, and in the process just taking it a bit easier. Have you set out to do this same ride at a steady, maintainable pace that matches what you perceive as being faster? Without a computer measuring HR at least you have no idea though what is perceived vs. real. Get an HR monitor and do the ride on each bike and see avg HR vs. time. Somewhere in there you may find something that either proves what you think or debunks it and if it debunks it, it is all just perception. If it proves it then you'll at least know there is something about the bike making it and the rider slower.

I do a ride, actually it was my 10 mile commute, that would take one hour on my commuter bike, a converted MTB, and it would take 58 minutes on my road bike, an all out CF. It is everything else that keeps the times almost equal as I know I can go much faster on the roadie and did. It just didn't make up for all the other lost time.

And I need suggestions to make my wife faster too. She just plods along no matter which bike she rides and is only a good riding partner when going to the beach.

Last edited by zacster; 11-04-19 at 06:04 AM.
zacster is offline  
Old 11-04-19, 04:57 PM
  #43  
Miele Man
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 2,852

Bikes: Miele Latina, Miele Suprema, Miele Uno SL, Miele MTB, Bianchi Model Unknown, Fiori Venezia, VeloSport Adamas AX

Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 634 Post(s)
Liked 244 Times in 170 Posts
Just wondering. Could you swap the cassettes and chains and see if that improves her time?

Cheers
Miele Man is offline  
Old 11-04-19, 07:22 PM
  #44  
RoMad
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
RoMad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Citrus county Fl.
Posts: 786

Bikes: Litespeed Tuscany , Lemond Poprad, 1970's Motobecane Grand Record

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
I have really enjoyed reading all of the good feedback. I got the Trek wheel weight from Treks live chat so I assume it is pretty close.
I have been sharing a lot of the feedback with her but she has said to just leave it alone and she would keep riding the Trek. I would have liked to flip the Trek stem over and drop the bars a little bit but after 42 years of marriage I know better than to fix something she doesn’t think is broken. We did a nice 25 miles on a different route today and she said she enjoyed the ride. So I officially give up unless or until she changes her mind.
RoMad is offline  
Old 11-05-19, 09:35 AM
  #45  
Steve B.
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: South shore, L.I., NY
Posts: 3,779

Bikes: Flyxii FR322, Cannondale Topstone, Miyata City Liner, Specialized Chisel

Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1359 Post(s)
Liked 153 Times in 120 Posts
Originally Posted by RoMad View Post
I have really enjoyed reading all of the good feedback. I got the Trek wheel weight from Treks live chat so I assume it is pretty close.
I have been sharing a lot of the feedback with her but she has said to just leave it alone and she would keep riding the Trek. I would have liked to flip the Trek stem over and drop the bars a little bit but after 42 years of marriage I know better than to fix something she doesn’t think is broken. We did a nice 25 miles on a different route today and she said she enjoyed the ride. So I officially give up unless or until she changes her mind.
In other words you wimped out, gave in to your wife and stopped trying to fix a problem that she probably doesn’t recognize as a problem. Typical guy response.
Steve B. is offline  
Old 11-05-19, 10:06 AM
  #46  
350htrr
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Canada, PG BC
Posts: 3,751

Bikes: 27 speed ORYX with over 39,000Kms on it and another 14,000KMs with a BionX E-Assist on it

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 957 Post(s)
Liked 20 Times in 20 Posts
How's about making your ride a little slower...
350htrr is offline  
Old 11-05-19, 06:19 PM
  #47  
Miele Man
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 2,852

Bikes: Miele Latina, Miele Suprema, Miele Uno SL, Miele MTB, Bianchi Model Unknown, Fiori Venezia, VeloSport Adamas AX

Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 634 Post(s)
Liked 244 Times in 170 Posts
Originally Posted by RoMad View Post
I have really enjoyed reading all of the good feedback. I got the Trek wheel weight from Treks live chat so I assume it is pretty close.
I have been sharing a lot of the feedback with her but she has said to just leave it alone and she would keep riding the Trek. I would have liked to flip the Trek stem over and drop the bars a little bit but after 42 years of marriage I know better than to fix something she doesn’t think is broken. We did a nice 25 miles on a different route today and she said she enjoyed the ride. So I officially give up unless or until she changes her mind.
For some people good enough is good enough. Sounds like your wife is one of those people. The IMPORTANT thing is that SHE is RIDING and SHE is ENJOYING it.

Cheers
Miele Man is offline  
Old 11-06-19, 09:31 AM
  #48  
freeranger
Senior Member
 
freeranger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 1,443

Bikes: 06 Lemond Reno, 96 GT Timberline mtn.bike

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 85 Post(s)
Liked 85 Times in 63 Posts
Maybe try changing tire pressure--simple and free! Interesting article: https://www.roadbikerider.com/the-ti...-jan-heine-d1/
freeranger is offline  
Old 11-06-19, 10:15 AM
  #49  
wphamilton
Senior Member
 
wphamilton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Alpharetta, GA
Posts: 14,852

Bikes: Nashbar Road

Mentioned: 70 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2691 Post(s)
Liked 140 Times in 95 Posts
Originally Posted by RoMad View Post
I have really enjoyed reading all of the good feedback. I got the Trek wheel weight from Treks live chat so I assume it is pretty close.
I have been sharing a lot of the feedback with her but she has said to just leave it alone and she would keep riding the Trek. I would have liked to flip the Trek stem over and drop the bars a little bit but after 42 years of marriage I know better than to fix something she doesn’t think is broken. We did a nice 25 miles on a different route today and she said she enjoyed the ride. So I officially give up unless or until she changes her mind.
I hesitated to mention it then, but maybe for future reference: in the photo the Lightspeed saddle is tilted nose down compared to the Trek. And that can make a pretty major difference in how the bike feels.
wphamilton is offline  
Old 11-06-19, 05:43 PM
  #50  
mr_bill
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 3,956
Mentioned: 32 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1732 Post(s)
Liked 224 Times in 175 Posts
I have to concur. When the difference is small, it’s the small stuff.

It may or may not be the saddle, but...

-mr. bill
mr_bill is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.