Forum home Mountain biking forum Health, fitness & training

Quick hello and a bit of info

Mick-HMick-H Posts: 7
edited October 2013 in Health, fitness & training
First off, great site, enjoy reading most of it but have to admit to getting more confused the more I read on different topics, bikes, gearing, tyres, brakes, etc etc.

Anyway bit of info on me and my bike, I'm coming up to my 52nd birthday, I'm 5 foot 10 and 17 stone. People say that I'm big build but not fat, doctors and hospitals tend not to look at it the same way and they say I'm obese and need to get down to a min of 13.5 stone before they'll perform an operation on my back.
Like many blokes my age I'm not very fit but I am much fitter than I was a couple of month ago due to almost daily rides on my Carrera Fury MTB, it's a 2008 model that I bought on the ride to work scheme, it's spent most of it's life in the garage gathering dust, only being used on the odd, very odd occasion.

I only use it on the road, it has Conti Travel Contact tyres and front suspension is set just off the stiffest setting.
I'm going to be using the bike for work over the coming months, a round trip of just under 24 miles, if all goes well I may even get a new bike after winter.

I've got several different routes that I've been riding ranging from 10 miles to 35.
I'm doing the 10 miles in a fairly comfy 40 min which is 20 min off my original time, the 35 miler which I've only done once took 2 hrs and 58 min, which I was and still am really chuffed at since the last 17 mile was mostly up hill.
Other rides include 16 miles in 1.18 and 26 miler in 2.12, not a clue how that compares with others, all I know is that I'm well chuffed and enjoying every minute of it.

Now for a question, Which bikes should I be looking at in the future? I'll be using it to commute and the odd weekend rides probably a max of say 60 mile, I like the idea of disc brakes, only because that's what the Fury has and I've not a clue as to how good rim brakes are nowadays, I think I'd prefer drop bars, not to bothered about the weight of the bike but want good components and I want a bike that will last so long as it's well maintained.
Decisions decisions.


  • JayKostaJayKosta Posts: 635
    Since you've been doing quite a bit of riding on your MTB, you've probably already found a fairly comfortable position regarding how much torso bend, weight on arms, etc. I wouldn't stray too far from your current position - don't allow a young and enthusiastic sales person talk you into buying a 'race bike.

    Drop bars are fine, but just about all of your riding will be with your hands -
    1) on flat straight section near the stem.
    2) on curve just forward of the straight section.
    3) resting on the brake hoods.

    Rim brakes are usually fine, but they can lose power when wet.

    For commuting, having mud guards is good - so make sure the bike has clearance to accept them. Also good is having durable tires, e.g. 28mm as the narrowest.

    Cycling can help you lose weight, but it also usually involves some 'life style' changes... Recognize when you are eating 'for pleasure' or as 'stress relief', and try to reduce your calories in those situations. Being hungry is just part of the training plan for weight loss.

    Jay Kosta
    Endwell NY USA
  • Mick

    Whats the operation? I got a total disc replacement 6 years ago (charite disc...operated from the front) The surgeon said it was a waste of time on anyone who was not fit. Luckily i was at the time......although put on a couple of stone when the operation came round....generally through not being able to do any sport at all. It is brilliant.....struggled for 6 months or so but now play golf, played football and have done Etape du Tour etc.

    If i were you i would lose the weight
  • Mick-HMick-H Posts: 7
    I'm trying to lose the weight but stuck at 17 no matter what I do it's just not going any lower.
    The opp is for stenosis at the lower part of my back.
  • kajjalkajjal Posts: 3,380
    Weight loss gets harder as you get older but eating reasonably healthily with no snacks or sugary drinks between meals should lead to quick weight loss if you do enough exercise. If you can ride three or more times during the week at a good pace with a longer rider at the weekend that will help as well. I love my food and use cycling to allow me to enjoy it without any worries. Your times are coming down nicely so just keep going !

    Due to your back condition I would be tempted to stick to your current bike if it is comfortable at the distances you are doing. A road bike will cover the same distances faster on road but they need to be more accurately setup to fit the rider. A badly fitting road bike will cause discomfort to anyone. If you do go for a road bike explain that you need it setup for comfortable long rides rather than a race like position and that will take the strain off your back. My road bike now setup properly is very comfortable and still a lot faster than my mountain bike. The rim brakes are fine so far but not as good as my mountain bikes disc brakes.

    Hope that is of some help and good luck :)
  • Mick-HMick-H Posts: 7
    Decided to keep my current bike till at least after winter to make sure that what I'm experiencing is not just a fad.
    What I hope to do though is upgrade some bits and bats, namely the gears, maybe the wheels but that would be much further down the line.

    Rear Derailleur SRAM X5
    Shifters SRAM X5
    Front Derailleur SRAM X5
    Chainset Truvativ Blaze powersplined
    Wheels Yes Mavic XM-317

    I'll be using the bike to and from work and rides out when not in work. I'm doing it to gain fitness and lose weight.
    I have to admit that I'm a complete beginner where all of this is concerned so any help will be welcome.

    I've currently got my eye on a Shimano Tiagra Rear Derailleur and a Shimano Tiagra Hyperglide HG 50 - 12 to 25 Cassette from what I can gather these are decent entry level road bike equipment but would they be ok on a mountain bike/commuter bike?
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