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05-24-2011, 11:04 AM
New to this fantastic women's forum. As most, I biked growing up and last year got back into cycling. I bought a cheap, are you ready for this, Mongoose to see if my back could take it (2004 back surgery w/ lots of post-op complications). The good news I felt great, the bike of course is a heavy piece of, well, you know and I've been shopping for a decent entry/intermediate cycle.
I ride paved bike paths, typically a 20 mile spin twice a week and 1-2 10 milers during the week after work, yes with my 35 lb mountain bike.
I began shopping for a flat bar - C'dale quick --but now I'm wondering if I should purchase a bike w/ drop bars instead. At first I was skeptical because i thought drops may aggravate my lower back but after reading excerpts from this forum, i wonder. I know drops would be best for long distance, but i was doing okay cycling 20 with the flat. I'm returning to the shop later today to test a Fuji finest and/or C'dale. I know I'll be flying on whatever i get. I'm in good physical shape -- workout 5-6 times a week w/ core w/outs; back has been great for the past 2 yrs.
Really looking for some feedback. Thoughts on the Fuji (had one in my teens & loved it)? Any other advice is certainly appreciated.
05-24-2011, 01:35 PM
Hi! I'm newish to the forum myself, and it's a great place to be. ^_^ I hope you find the community you're looking for here.
As to the bike, no specific advice (I've haven't seen either), but I will give a shoutout on behalf of any and all flat bar road bike lovers. Try drop bars, definitely, but if you don't think they're for you, don't feel bad about getting something you love. (Unless, of course, you want to be the Fastest Rider in the World. Then you may have a problem).
Hi Janet, I rode a heavy bike last year like you, and this year upgraded to a Trek FX (I think probalby similar to the Quick). Flat handlebars, skinnier tires, lighter, but not quite a road bike. Riding is so much easier this year. However....I do wish that I had tested some road bikes. I ride with some beginner groups and can keep up, but I'm not sure I could keep up with the next level of riders. I can't speak to the back pain you might feel on a road bike, but I'm sure the other ladies on here will have good advice for you. Just wanted to suggest that you consider a road bike, because you sound like you are in better shape than me :) Have fun test riding.
Welcome to TE Janet!
I'll leave the advising part to the gals who know, I ride an old beater. :p
05-24-2011, 02:12 PM
How about an alt bar such as the Salsa Woodchipper (http://salsacycles.com/components/woodchipper/)? The drops are narrow and sweep out so that you can get a little lower on the bike while opening up the chest for those long rides. I have one on my Fargo and I like how I can get down in the drops without bending over so much like I would with a standard road bar. Salsa also make a Short N Shallow (http://salsacycles.com/components/short_shallow/) road bar. My hubby has some back issues and likes to use a butterfly bar (http://www.amazon.com/XLC-Multi-Functional-Trekking-580mm/dp/B000NULPIS) on his Specialized Sirrus bike. This bar offers many hand positions while allowing you to sit more upright. :cool: It's among the favorites for the trekkers.
05-24-2011, 02:56 PM
Hi, Janet, and welcome to TE!
Some people are perfectly fine doing long distances on flat-bar bikes. My experience is different. That shouldn't stop you from testing both, and Sundial has a good point about swapping out bars. Go test out both drop- and flat-bar bikes. For flat-bar bikes, there's also the Giant Rapid/Dash.
05-24-2011, 04:50 PM
Hi Janet - my vote would be to try the drop bar road bike and see if you like it.
My own experience is that I started out with a heavy hybrid and after I did a ride of 130 kms over a week-end I rushed out and bought a flat bar road bike which was much lighter and more fun. But it didn't give me any more hand positions compared to my hybrid.
Then I tried a drop bar road bike (actually a second hand one that my partner had talked me into buying but which I'd only ridden once because I was too scared of it) and now I love, love, love riding a drop bar. I haven't ridden the flat bar for over 18 months. I now have a new carbon fibre drop bar bike (a Cannondale Synapse Femme 3) and it is a dream to ride. I can vouch for the comfort of drop bar bikes and the ability to move your hands around.
So, you may want to consider a drop bar to avoid that interim step of buying a flat bar then feeling compelled to upgrade again to a drop bar.
I know that lots of people love flat bars and don't subsequently buy a drop bar but since you are already considering it, I think there's a high likelihood that you might only be happy with the flat bar for a while.
05-26-2011, 10:38 AM
thank you all for your feedback. I've tested about 5 bikes and decided to go with the C'dale Quick 3 carbon. picking up today and looking forward to the ride. Will post pics over the weekend.
05-26-2011, 07:53 PM
Welcome to TE! This is a great place to hang out, ask questions, and share experiences. Definitely post a picture of your new bike -- it's a firm requirement for joining this forum. :D
05-26-2011, 10:10 PM
Enjoy! I love my flat bar Kona Dew for commuting and all-round riding. I have a recently acquired road bike. I'm glad she isn't my only bike.
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