Forum home Road cycling forum Road beginners

Had to get off and push for the first time

VentVent Posts: 15
edited February 2014 in Road beginners
Been riding since October last year and yesterday for the first time I had to get off and push !
Quite a steep bank (Dent gate lane on the road to Copley from Barnard castle) I had covered about 30 miles at this poin mostly into the wind.i had fueled and hydrated myself on my ride but I lost all power going uphill my cadence dropped below 20 and I just couldn't turn the pedals I stopped to catch my breath and tried to remount but ended up in the ditch lol
I'm riding on a single speed and have to grind up banks can I do myself any damage riding like this ? Or is it just a case of that's it for my power and once you reach your limit that's all you've got so you will stop
Thanks Adrian

Posts

  • Nick_MNick_M Posts: 58
    Doesn't sound like it would do your knees any good, 20 rpm is very low.
  • Climbing hills on fixed or SS is a niche but very much existent interest in cycling, so you're not alone. Climbing in bigger gears now and again can be used to build strength. I don't see that there's a definite risk of injury unless you are doing this a lot at very high intensity. Some people are more prone to knee problems and so on than others anyway, and don't need to do anything extreme to aggravate them.
  • The answer to hill is gears.
  • navrig2navrig2 Posts: 1,666
    edited February 2014
    Don't worry about it.

    When you have to get off and walk so far that you wear out your cleats you can let your head go down.......

    f ecking expensive hill that was!!
  • The answer to hill is gears.

    A lot of fixed gear addicts would disagree with you there!
  • VentVent Posts: 15
    I think I'm going to have to go with gears !! End of next month I'm riding the colomba cardio classic 66 miles 3500 ft climbing .On Saturday I rode 57 miles and climbed 2500 ft and pushed hard just to keep the pedals turning .
    My knees have a burning sensation on the side of my kneecaps I'm not a young fella 47 and only returned to cycling 3-4 months ago after 25 years is this normal after a hard ride ? I have no stiffness or pain in my legs just the side of my knees it's like I've got deepheat on them
    Thanks for your responses
  • marcusjbmarcusjb Posts: 2,412
    The answer to hill is gears.

    A lot of fixed gear addicts would disagree with you there!

    Indeed. Good strong fixed riders (stronger than me for sure!) will walk very little, there will be a point in steepness where they can't get up the hill even whilst tacking, so they will have to resort the 24 inch gear, but I ride regularly with people on fixed tackling some pretty hair-raising stuff.

    Very few of them struggle with knee issues it seems, but quite a few arm and wrist strains due to pulling on the bars so much harder.

    One season I will man up and do a fixed SR. I will be choosing a flatter SR though.....
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 16,015
    It's surprising what you can do when you put your mind to it (or switch your mind off entirely to allow you to do really stupid things!)

    The hill outside my front door goes up fairly quickly about 100 feet and is signposted 10% (no idea how accurate that is - probably ought to work it out...). If I've got eg 34-26 as bottom gear then I'll usually pretty much end up in that gear - maybe a little soft but I'm always doing the climb right from cold. I tried it the other week on the highest gear for that cassette (50-13) and it didn't kill me. It wasn't exactly fast but I lived. So whilst I'd still say that SS is a daft idea around here, I reckon there is a gear that would get me too and from work without losing too much time.
    Faster than a tent.......
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,123
    "resort the 24 inch gear"

    For those unfamiliar with imperial measurements, 24 inches = 2 feet. ie walking :D
  • marcusjbmarcusjb Posts: 2,412
    Rolf F wrote:
    It's surprising what you can do when you put your mind to it (or switch your mind off entirely to allow you to do really stupid things!)

    The hill outside my front door goes up fairly quickly about 100 feet and is signposted 10% (no idea how accurate that is - probably ought to work it out...). If I've got eg 34-26 as bottom gear then I'll usually pretty much end up in that gear - maybe a little soft but I'm always doing the climb right from cold. I tried it the other week on the highest gear for that cassette (50-13) and it didn't kill me. It wasn't exactly fast but I lived. So whilst I'd still say that SS is a daft idea around here, I reckon there is a gear that would get me too and from work without losing too much time.

    I think that's the key - gears make us lazy. It is easier to click down another gear (or two, or three) rather than just getting on with it.

    On most of my local training loops, my faster times up smaller climbs are almost all on the fixed. Almost all involve close to max HR as well!

    I don't have the legs or aerobic fitness to make that true on longer climbs - but it would come if I rode fixed more.

    Leaving aside really steep hills, fixed climbing is often quicker, partly because of the whole dead spot thing, but I am sure mainly because you have nowhere to hide, there are no lower gears to resort to.

    The flipside is that you are significantly slower on the downhills (on a 67", I am totally maxxed out at only 50kph and I couldn't keep it going for very long at all).

    I've a friend who commutes on fixed from Otley to Leeds - looks pretty bumpy!
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,123
    Last time my rear mech cable on my winter bike snapped inside the shifter I couldn't be bothered with any touring type bodges involving limit screws and tying knots in the cable. I was only 10 undulating miles from home so I just rode in 30 x 12 on the uphills which wasn't so bad, and 39 x 12 for the rest.

    Think if I ever went for the simplicity / durability of a single cog it would be singlespeed rather than fixed though.
  • I know the road you're talking about and would imagine it could be unpleasant on a single speed. The best way to Copley from Barney is up to Folly Top, across to Woodland and down to Copley. Folly Top to Woodland is a great cycling road.

    To be honest I wouldn't recommend doing the Cardio Classic on a single speed. You'd probably be ok up to Muker but then you've got the Buttertubs to contend with. After that the main challenge would Scarth Nick after Redmire but there are several significant climbs near the end, not to mention Cravengate Bank in Richmond.

    Good luck if you decide to try it though.
  • marcusjb wrote:
    The answer to hill is gears.

    A lot of fixed gear addicts would disagree with you there!

    Indeed. Good strong fixed riders (stronger than me for sure!) will walk very little, there will be a point in steepness where they can't get up the hill even whilst tacking, so they will have to resort the 24 inch gear, but I ride regularly with people on fixed tackling some pretty hair-raising stuff.

    Very few of them struggle with knee issues it seems, but quite a few arm and wrist strains due to pulling on the bars so much harder.

    One season I will man up and do a fixed SR. I will be choosing a flatter SR though.....

    Yes... Sheldon Brown claims on his site that riding fixed could be therapeutic for knee injuries as well.

    This isn't helping - I'm aiming to finally start riding cog this year, even if I have to convert my old gaspipe to begin with!
  • Stalling on a steep hill is not pleasant. Getting started, depending on the hill and set-up can be a little dicey too as it can be hard to get that initial bit of momentum going.
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 16,015
    marcusjb wrote:
    I've a friend who commutes on fixed from Otley to Leeds - looks pretty bumpy!

    Naaah, there's options but the default is a steady grind each way and a gradual descent. It's not a bad run for single speeding tbh. My commute is much more lopsided - probably OK on single speed but pretty censored on a fixed.

    What sort of gear ratio do you use (in English please - cog numbers - none of the fixie gear inch stuff!)? I'm mulling over pretending my bike is single speed for a day to see how it works out but I'd want to get fairly close to a sensible ratio to start with!
    Faster than a tent.......
  • marcusjbmarcusjb Posts: 2,412
    My do anything gear is 67 inches, which is 48*19.

    That will take me on my commute around London (with rack and panniers with laptop etc.), out to my office in Buckinghamshire (80km round trip with aforementioned laptop) and laps of Richmond park amongst other various rides.

    Seems to strike a good balance.

    I started at 48*17 - it felt more natural ( I am more masher than spinner by default), but switching to the lower gear was when I started to really enjoy riding fixed more.
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 16,015
    marcusjb wrote:
    My do anything gear is 67 inches, which is 48*19.

    That will take me on my commute around London (with rack and panniers with laptop etc.), out to my office in Buckinghamshire (80km round trip with aforementioned laptop) and laps of Richmond park amongst other various rides.

    Seems to strike a good balance.

    I started at 48*17 - it felt more natural ( I am more masher than spinner by default), but switching to the lower gear was when I started to really enjoy riding fixed more.

    Thanks for that. Not a million miles off the 50-18 or 19 I suspect I used to grind my way up the hill this morning with. It's not so much that one that is the issue (short, sharp pain!) but the long drag uphill going home that bothers me. Food for thought....!
    Faster than a tent.......
Sign In or Register to comment.