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Climbing has become my “thing”.

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Climbing has become my “thing”.

Old 11-29-22, 05:47 PM
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Tomm Willians
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Climbing has become my “thing”.

I am primarily a road/endurance rider but due to where I live, safe riding conditions require I drive at least an hour away. I live in a very large gated community that is located in hilly terrain where a nice “flat-ish” ride doesn’t exist so I finally quit my whining and learned to enjoy climbing.
As I’ve been training for over 7-8 months for my first double century at age 62, it seemed only obvious that being able to climb was a necessary skill. I’ve completed a number of solo centuries and double metrics but never a full 200.
I’ll be signing up for the Hemet Double in April which only has 6000(+) of climbing making it one of the “flatter” doubles I can find. Today I climbed over 4000’ in only 29 miles by simply hitting every hill in the neighborhood. Many of these hills average 12-15% with one (very short) section hitting 18%.
Undoubtedly what’s helping is I just acquired a new 2022 Specialized Diverge Carbon Expert with SRAM ETap and the 52t “Mullet” gearing. My previous Orbea Terra was well geared for climbing but not quite like this !
I only decided to get serious about cycling about 2-3 years ago and though it’s a bit late at 62 to have any crazy expectations, I’m going down swinging 🤣🚴🏻‍♂️🚴🏻‍♂️🚴🏻‍♂️🚴🏻‍♂️🚴🏻‍♂️

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Old 11-29-22, 08:14 PM
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Damn!
Go get 'em Tomm.

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Old 11-29-22, 09:26 PM
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Ha, yeah, I moved from Indiana to Oregon at 57, so climbing also became my thing by necessity. I'm slow af climbing, at 215 lbs, but I love it. Actually kind of hate it in the moment, but as soon as the climb is over I'm looking for the next one. Weird but true.

After your double century, next up is a 400k.
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Old 11-29-22, 11:32 PM
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You sure you are not in your 30s?
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Old 11-30-22, 05:45 AM
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Go man go!
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Old 11-30-22, 08:49 AM
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Originally Posted by rsbob View Post
You sure you are not in your 30s?
Lord I only wish …..
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Old 11-30-22, 10:42 AM
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I am surrounded by hills other than some limited flats. To do any sort of mileage, one has to climb. When I first moved here I found the climbs a wearisome necessity. After begrudgingly taking part in a climbing competition last November, I started getting slowly getting better at it. Toward the end of the month, climbs which I would dread I could easily fly up, and in just a month. I figure it came down to use it or lose it. Now I don’t dread those hills.

What the OP posted though, is a whole other level. I would aim to do 2000’-3000’ each day and that was enough to get my fitness in gear.
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Old 11-30-22, 12:16 PM
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I just go for short trips, about 15miles only, but after 4, it's uphill. Steeply, through my little city, and I can take it further by heading to Fell Top, where a monumen exists. Many cyclists use that as a traning run, but these days I prefer to limit my distance on the grounds that I have too many other things to do.

Might not be true. Porky pies are part of my family DNA

The final part of my shortie is a modest incline, leading up to the City Park main entrance, it's surely the best place to showcase one's expertise in these matters!
Flat out, max. effort in a medium gear, for only about 200 yards or so, the heart rate rises inexorably, and I'm exhausted at the end.
Those crossing the road to the entrance are, of course, hugely impressed, faced with the sight and sounds of the huffin' and puffin' of this ole fella, doing his stupid best to emulate a steam loco of similar age . .. . . .I used that pleasant course a lot, during the pandemic.
Have fun. We all deserve it.

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Old 11-30-22, 03:04 PM
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AWESOME ride and expectations for the future.

Originally Posted by Tomm Willians View Post
I am primarily a road/endurance rider but due to where I live,..............................................I only decided to get serious about cycling about 2-3 years ago and though it’s a bit late at 62 to have any crazy expectations, I’m going down swinging 🤣🚴🏻‍♂️🚴🏻‍♂️🚴🏻‍♂️🚴🏻‍♂️🚴🏻‍♂️........................................
r.e. bold IMO, if you don't go down swinging, you haven't tried hard enough!!! ENJOY THE MILES WITH SMILES
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Old 12-03-22, 02:05 AM
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Well done. Yeah, about a year after I resume cycling in 2015 after a 30+ year hiatus, I got bored with the flattish trails and realized that if I wanted to explore the rest of my area I'd need to learn to deal with some climbing. We don't have any mountains here, but after awhile those short, steep rollers can start to feel like mountains (which I did get a chance to ride in the 1970s in California).

I've been doing more running than riding the past year, but when I do get out on the bike I head toward the roller coaster terrain, especially a few neighborhoods with lots of short, steep hills in the 9%-12% range and do repeats.

Interestingly, while running doesn't really translate well to cycling in terms of speed on flats, it does seem to keep my legs in shape for climbing.
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Old 12-03-22, 05:15 AM
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4000' in 30 miles is respectable, for sure. I consider anything in the neighborhood of 80-100 feet/mile to be a hilly ride.
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Old 12-04-22, 01:06 AM
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Pretty much any ride I do around here (northern California), there's about 1,000' of climbing per 10 miles, so your ride exceeds that by a fair amount. It's almost impossible to do a flat ride here. Good luck on your double century. I've done the Davis Double (similar to the Hemet Double) a bunch of times and it's a great feeling of accomplishment when you finish. That said, I did a much harder ride a couple of years ago...the Markleeville Deathride...130 miles and 16,000' of climbing. It's the climbing (and the altitude) that gets you, not the miles.
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Old 12-04-22, 08:33 AM
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Originally Posted by davester View Post
Pretty much any ride I do around here (northern California), there's about 1,000' of climbing per 10 miles, so your ride exceeds that by a fair amount. It's almost impossible to do a flat ride here. Good luck on your double century. I've done the Davis Double (similar to the Hemet Double) a bunch of times and it's a great feeling of accomplishment when you finish. That said, I did a much harder ride a couple of years ago...the Markleeville Deathride...130 miles and 16,000' of climbing. It's the climbing (and the altitude) that gets you, not the miles.
Yeah. I spent a month in Berkeley this past summer. Pretty much every ride was in the neighborhood of 100±20 ft/mile. For a flatlander from the midwest, It was great. But I found myself wanting to mix in an easy flat recovery ride here and there. In the east bay anyway, those kind of suck - i.e., urban routes full of traffic controls or a narrow MUP along the bay with lots of pedestrians and dog walkers
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Old 12-04-22, 11:11 AM
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I made the transition from being a flat land rider to being a climber many years ago. Best cycling move ever; better fitness, more enjoyable, and more feeling of accomplishment. This is now my normal ride.





I'll never be a great climber, but I've found my place in the tough old bird category.


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Old 12-04-22, 11:18 AM
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Great route and performance to match!

After living most of my life in the flatlands of northeastern Illinois, I developed a passion for hills in southwestern Wisconsin, coastal Italy (while visiting in-laws) and the bluffs of the Mississippi river near St. Louis.

I'm still the slowest climber in history, but I'm willing to climb just about anything now.

Descending can be fun, too:
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When I ride my bike I feel free and happy and strong. I'm liberated from the usual nonsense of day to day life. Solid, dependable, silent, my bike is my horse, my fighter jet, my island, my friend. Together we will conquer that hill and thereafter the world.

Last edited by Barrettscv; 12-04-22 at 11:58 AM.
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Old 12-04-22, 07:57 PM
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Tell me more about your gearing. Bottom gear on my mountain bike is 26 gear-inches, 28/28 ratio with 26" tires. I have gone as low as 24/28 (22 gear-inches), but I don't know whether anything lower would be useful. I have seen some radically low gearing for bikes purpose-built for the short and steep Fargo St. climb in Los Angeles.
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Old 12-04-22, 08:00 PM
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Chainring is 42, cassette is 52, riding on 32c Michelin Power Roads
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Old 12-05-22, 12:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Barrettscv View Post
Great route and performance to match!

After living most of my life in the flatlands of northeastern Illinois, I developed a passion for hills in southwestern Wisconsin, coastal Italy (while visiting in-laws) and the bluffs of the Mississippi river near St. Louis.

I'm still the slowest climber in history, but I'm willing to climb just about anything now.

Descending can be fun, too:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZxrKiyxtYRk
If you enjoy descending, check out the videos by SAFA Brian on YouTube. Amazing speeds, if not ridiculous and some nice views.
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Old 12-05-22, 01:07 PM
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Originally Posted by rsbob View Post
If you enjoy descending, check out the videos by SAFA Brian on YouTube. Amazing speeds, if not ridiculous and some nice views.
My personal memories of Italy will always supersede someone else's downhill antics.

Nothing like over looking out at the mediterranean while descending at a consistent 4650 ft in about 12 miles..

https://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/411922326

https://www.bikeforums.net/fifty-plu...ean-coast.html

Last edited by Barrettscv; 12-06-22 at 08:33 AM.
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Old 12-05-22, 05:39 PM
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Originally Posted by rsbob View Post
If you enjoy descending, check out the videos by SAFA Brian on YouTube. Amazing speeds, if not ridiculous and some nice views.
I can't watch those videos. I know a lot of the roads he posts videos from. Extreme stuff.
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Old 12-05-22, 06:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Barrettscv View Post
My personal memories of Italy will always supersede someone else's downhill antics.

Nothing like over looking the mediterranean while descending at a consistent 10% for a dozen miles or more.

https://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/411922326

https://www.bikeforums.net/fifty-plu...ean-coast.html
Had not seen your excellent thread on Italy. Spectacular shots and what a wonderful place to cycle. My wife and I have covered most of Italy on our trips and thought we would like to start a cycle touring company there but the dream was never realized.

My wife and I were fortunate enough to cycle around Sienna out to San Gimignano. We brought our tandem for a cycling tour of Italy but it got lost at the Milano airport so we had to rent bikes during the trip. I am envious of your rides and adventures. Thanks for sharing a part of your life and travels.
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Old 12-06-22, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by rsbob View Post
Had not seen your excellent thread on Italy. Spectacular shots and what a wonderful place to cycle. My wife and I have covered most of Italy on our trips and thought we would like to start a cycle touring company there but the dream was never realized.

My wife and I were fortunate enough to cycle around Sienna out to San Gimignano. We brought our tandem for a cycling tour of Italy but it got lost at the Milano airport so we had to rent bikes during the trip. I am envious of your rides and adventures. Thanks for sharing a part of your life and travels.




We took the Italian dream to the next level in 2021 when we purchased a home near Lago Maggiore (and covid didn't derail us), see ;

https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/i...ing/index.html
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Old 12-06-22, 11:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Barrettscv View Post



We took the Italian dream to the next level in 2021 when we purchased a home near Lago Maggiore (and covid didn't derail us), see ;

https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/i...ing/index.html
Actually have been to your lake. Picturesque and beautiful. You are living the dream!
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Old 12-06-22, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
I consider anything in the neighborhood of 80-100 feet/mile to be a hilly ride.
Same here, for the most part. Some of the days of my June tour in Vermont were exceptions. 65 feet/mile can be tough when you have steep, ruling grades on dirt/gravel.
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Old 12-07-22, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Barrettscv View Post



We took the Italian dream to the next level in 2021 when we purchased a home near Lago Maggiore (and covid didn't derail us), see ;

https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/i...ing/index.html

Wow, kudos to you for embarking on such an adventure. I've dreamed of such a thing, though more likely in southern France since I don't speak Italian. The wife would be unlikely to agree to it though.
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