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Using a heavy bike for training

downfaderdownfader Posts: 3,686
edited March 2009 in The bottom bracket
I know a lot of guys tend to like carbon forks, aluminium or carbon frame and some decent lightweight wheels, etc. All in all you go very fast with a moderate effort (in my estimation obviously). The thing is I've been riding the kona now for a few weeks, its quite heavy but I love it. What I find very odd though is that I can hill climb and actually enjoy it, where as on my old Marin Sausilito it was a very light bike but hills were a nightmare.. perhaps partly due to the way the gears were set up..

So here is my thought of the day. Is it of more value to train on a heavy bike and save the lighter ones for races and such? Or do you all prefer the comfort a lighter bike can sometimes provide? Like quick gettaways at the lights. :D

Posts

  • Jimi_08Jimi_08 Posts: 28
    I Train on a fairy heavy bike my trek 6500 but when I race i go to my trek elite 9.9 and there is so much difference in not only speed but feel. I do prefer my 6500 as when doing trails i rather am more comfortable riding with a heavier bike than that of the elite. The only advantage of the elite is the shinyness and weight. :P
  • teagarteagar Posts: 2,100
    Surely if you ride a lighter bike you should just ride faster than if you were on a heavier one? That way you get the same out of it.
    Note: the above post is an opinion and not fact. It might be a lie.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Yes. Simple answer, the handling may be different. Only thing is that I have found is although you will get faster it will not get easier. For instance you may put in the same effort on a hillclimg in training on the heavy bike as you would in a race with a lighter bike but you will get there quicker and recover sooner.

    Hope tis makes sense :?
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Will also work on my spelling, read hillclimb instead of hillclimg and this for tis. :D
  • McBain_v1McBain_v1 Posts: 5,237
    My bikes get lighter as the seasons do:

    Winter = 531c 1983 Raleigh with 8-spd Shimano 600 throughout
    Spring/Autumn = 631 Raleigh with 9-spd Ultegra throughout
    Summer = Titanium with 10spd Dura-Ace

    I notice the difference between all of these bikes and love their individual quirks.

    What do I ride? Now that's an Enigma!
  • unclemalcunclemalc Posts: 563
    I used to use a stupidly heavy Scott Hybrid for the winter but at ~ 35 - 40lbs that was too much, so I went out on the old Dawes which must be ~25lb.
    As said above, it didn't necessarily seem to make a lot of difference once I went to the Bianchi, at ~20lbs. This winter I was using a single-speed Spesh which although similar in weight to the Bianchi, meant riding in a different way, which made it harder.
    By swapping around, all this has led to a better appreciation and enjoyment of the different feel of each bike, and more fun generally.

    In terms of the theory, if you expend X amount of energy on a heavy bike you will achieve a fitness level of Y and accomplish an achievment of 'Z'..
    All other things being equal, if you then expend that X amount of energy on a lighter bike, at the same fitness level, you will accomplish Z a lot quicker and/or easier, or achive 'Z+'.
    You can do the same thing by hauling a belly around with you (like me) and then getting rid of it (I am getting there...), or strapping a full camelbak on every trip over the winter and then leaving it off in the spring.
    It works: I know someone who does.
    Spring!
    Singlespeeds in town rule.
  • downfaderdownfader Posts: 3,686
    teagar wrote:
    Surely if you ride a lighter bike you should just ride faster than if you were on a heavier one? That way you get the same out of it.

    Personally I feel like I've developed more core body strength and leg strength that with the lighter bike. As Unclemalc says its a different feel with different bikes obviously. :)
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    I have a heavy steel fixie for the winter, and a light carbon bike for the summer.

    I only notice the difference for about the first half hour of the ride - after that - I cant tell.
    I dont think theres any real benefit, apart from heavier usually = cheaper ?
  • OffTheBackAdamOffTheBackAdam Posts: 1,869
    We shoved a house brick into a club member's saddlebag once, that seemed to slow him down a bit on the club run! :D
    Remember that you are an Englishman and thus have won first prize in the lottery of life.
  • HeadhuunterHeadhuunter Posts: 6,494
    Have to say that adding weight just slows me down but I still expend the same energy. When I commute home on normal days my rucksack weighs in at about 5kg perhaps, but when I stop at Tesco it ends up at 10-15kg and I just end up going more slowly. Equally at the weekend I get the old carbon Focus out for club runs and I just go further and faster than I would on the commuting bike.
    Do not write below this line. Office use only.
  • teagarteagar Posts: 2,100
    downfader wrote:
    teagar wrote:
    Surely if you ride a lighter bike you should just ride faster than if you were on a heavier one? That way you get the same out of it.

    Personally I feel like I've developed more core body strength and leg strength that with the lighter bike. As Unclemalc says its a different feel with different bikes obviously. :)

    Tell that to the pros who ride the same frame all year round. :roll:


    They change their wheels but that's more for strength of the wheels than anything else
    Note: the above post is an opinion and not fact. It might be a lie.
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