A story of going from being a non-runner to planning for a marathon in three years...

Friday, February 5, 2010

I Need Help


So that whole going slow thing? Totally did not happen. Instead I ran what my schedule told me to run. 4 miles at goal half marathon pace. Well, actually, 4.85 miles at an average of 9:08. It's just, well, I can't find anyone who wants to run 10:00 minute miles (or slower)! On the plus side, if I can still manage this pace even when exhausted then at least I'm getting in some good runs on tired legs. Regardless, I'm REALLY looking forward to my rest day tomorrow.

Thankfully one of the other women in the lunch time running group was out with us and she was willing to go slower than the guys. We chatted about workouts and dogs and marathons. She's debating whether or not to sign up for Chicago again. It would be her fourth year in a row if she does it. Her husband is talking about doing it again. And, she said, if he does then she'll probably do it, too. She sounds like she's got some good marathon advice so I'm totally going to be quizzing her. Plus, she's really good at pacing. My pace graph looks so smooth!

At the start of the run (when we were still hanging with the guys) we were talking about the Grand Haven Triathlon which a few of the guys in the group are doing. Grand Haven is GORGEOUS and I would love an excuse to go back. My family vacationed there for a week a few summers ago and we have wonderful memories. I think if I ever decide to do a tri (or a duathlon. They have one of those, too.) I'd do this one. For a split second I thought about even doing the duathlon this year. The problem? I don't own a bike!

One of the guys in the group told me about Village Cycle. It's in the city and he swears they are super nice and helpful for novice bikers. I'm just so intimidated by bikes! It's like buying and owning a car. All these things to know and parts to worry about. Not to mention I am completely gear-challenged. No matter how many times someone tries to explain how the gears on a bike work I just get lost.

Still, I've been thinking about getting a bike. I think I could ask for some money towards one as a gift. But every time I go on a website to look at bikes I click away overwhelmed and scared. So, anyone reading this who bikes on a regular basis, what kind of bike do you have? Tell me about it. Suggest a bike for a beginner who is terrified of changing gears. In other words, help me!


Route:--Elev. Avg:0 ft
Location:Chicago, ILElev. Gain:+0 ft
Date:02/04/10Up/Downhill: [+0/-0]
Time:12:20 PMDifficulty:0 / 5.0
Weather:Overcast with Haze
 32 F temp; 68% humidity
 32 F heat index; winds S 6

Distance: 4.85 miles
Speed:6.6 mph
Pace:9' 08 /mi
Elevation (ft)
Pace (min/mile)
MilePace (min/mile)Speed (mph)Elevation
actual+/- avgactual+/- avg
19' 17+0' 096.5-0.1-- ft
29' 19+0' 116.4-0.1-- ft
39' 25+0' 176.4-0.2-- ft
49' 12+0' 046.5-0.1-- ft
end8' 50-0' 186.8+0.2-- ft
Versus average of 9' 08 min/mile

Posted from bimactive.com


Anonymous said...

As far as buying a bike, come up with a price range then go check out what the store has. It's good to stop in a few stores to get an idea of what's out there. If you've already got some biking skills try a quick ride. They usually let you test ride in a parking lot.

When I bought my bike I hadn't rode for almost 15 years, so it was a bit of a re-learning curve. But it is true, you really don't forget how to ride a bike. After a few times on it felt like second nature.

In terms of shifting. In a way I was lucky, my bike was so basic that it didn't have a gauge to tell me what gear # I was in. So I just learned by trial and error. Click gear, if it gets easier that's good, if it got harder, click the other way.

Short version of shifting: Left side will make a big change, right side will make small changes. Just play around and see what works for you.

Lacey said...

ooh i don't know anything about bikes. healthytippingpoint.com just did a post on buying bikes! that might be helpful.

glad you had someone to chat with-- she sounds like part of a "power couple" lol... they both run marathons- wow!

happy friday!!!!!!!!!!!

lifestudent said...

I am clueless when it comes to bikes. On the other hand, I (and many of my friends) run slower than 10 min miles ;)

Anonymous said...

I definitely recommend the bike I bought used, because it's a "good" bike, but a beginning model. The gear numbers show really easily. And it has straight handlebars!




It's a Specialized Sirrus.


Mine's a 2007 or something though. :)

Anonymous said...

Grr, those didn't make links. Sorry you'll have to copy and paste.

Anonymous said...

I WISH I had bike advice for you....truth is, I know NOTHING about them! I bought my bike (it's a hybrid) at a bike store, and they were more than helpful there. I would LOVE to do a triathlon one day. That is my next goal!

kilax said...

Ooo, I am excited you are thinking about getting a bike! I only have an old mountain bike, so I have no advice... but think it is great cross-training and it would be fun to do duathons or triathalons! :)

The woman you are running with at lunch sounds really cool! :)

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.