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Bareback Riders Unite(13 posts)

Bareback Riders UniteB. Bunter
May 25, 2001 9:21 AM
Last week I was stupid and ended up busting the face plate on my stem and severing my computer wire at the same time (Talking mondo stupido so please don't ask for details.) As a result I've been riding without a computer and digging it. I'm just as fast (actually I feel faster), am just as strong, but best of all I mentally feel better (None of that "I'm only doing what?????"). Unfortunately, I'm going to have to return to my evil technological ways (I have latent pace busting tendencies), but I'm planning on making bareback riding part of my weekly routine. Who else trains sans computer as a regular part of their training schedule? Does this euphoria eventually fade? And why is it that once a computer is attached, I never seem to want to remove it, even though it takes only a second?
I hate computersHank
May 25, 2001 10:44 AM
haven't used one for over ten years. Puts you in "training" mode and I prefer just plane old riding. I also think you can get a better idea of the kind of workout you've had by measuring how long you've been riding, instead of speed or mileage (especially true if you also ride mtbs). So even when I am training for racing, I just keep track of the number of hours per week. Also, they're ugly.
re: Bareback Riders UniteRay Sachs
May 25, 2001 11:28 AM
I've been riding without a computer almost exclusively since last October or so (right after the last century I had to follow a cue sheet on). I love it. I still know if I'm strong or not on a given ride, but I don't ride for the numbers. I always used to fight the urge to check the average speed, but frequently lost that fight. Without a computer, no possibility of seeing the numbers so it DON'T MATTER!

I'm going to have to put one back on one of my bikes before I start doing organized rides and tours later this summer so I can follow cue-sheets. But I'm gonna use an el cheapo model that doesn't tell me anything other than how fast I'm going at the moment and how far I've gone on the ride. The less information, the better, in my book. If I was "TRAINING", that'd be different, but I just ride without any particular goals other than having fun and staying healthy.

re: Bareback Riders Unitemesa
May 25, 2001 11:43 AM
Boy, you know how to live on the edge....
Old Race Car bayou
May 25, 2001 11:46 AM
was to cover the speedo', forcing the drivers attention onto the task at hand. Reading the speedo' held them back more, they "knew" the safe numbers and stayed close to them. Same, perhaps, for us.

I ride sans cyclometer. I keep tabs by riding a route of a known distance every week and compare times. Works for me.

A luxury, once had, becomes neccesity. Don't be fooled.
Excellent ResponseB. Bunter
May 25, 2001 12:27 PM
I notice that I'm looking forward instead of down, so my attention has definitely been altered. Also, I feel less spent. One thing I can attribute this to is that I seem to be riding more in response to my body than trying to maintain a certain average speed. Possibly by focusing more on speed, I'd push too hard and run out of gas, where now that I'm focused on my body's performance, I rest sooner and more appropriately. I don't know how my speed has actually changed, but I seem to be climbing more comfortably and sometimes in a higher gear. Plus there's much more scenery. Finally, I think you're luxury/neccesity insight is right on in this case. Instead of my computer being an aide, I instead have become a slave.
Enjoy the Rideblue bayou
May 25, 2001 12:44 PM
We all want to measure our progress. It's just my observation that if a riders 'puter says he's averaging 2k better that usual, he'll tone down the pace to match the "usual" data instead of riding at his ability at that time-- the increase in speed gets ignored and the training benefit seems to get lost.

I became more aware of wind and draft and effort and breathing and in general what was going on in my body and in my mind. Seems you are getting the same effect.
Computers & Heart monitorsBroBiker
May 25, 2001 12:42 PM
For the majority of riders (including myself) computers and heart monitors don't offer much benefit. Don't get me wrong, they can be great tools (especially heart monitors) if used properly and consistantly. But most riders don't.
Computers & Heart monitorsKen56
May 25, 2001 1:26 PM
I found that I needed to set the computer on the time elapsed mode in order to get my head back on straight. I had become too obsessed with speed and average speed and watched the darned thing too much. I don't want to get rid of it entirely, because I like to see the distance traveled when I'm done. But now, as others have said, I'm more in tune to the scenery, my body and breathing, and not concerned with how fast I'm going. It's made riding more enjoyable for me.
re: Bareback Riders UniteLC
May 25, 2001 2:03 PM
The only mode I use is cadence. It really helps me from punishing my knees in too high a gear or waisting energy on red lining my engine. Only look at the distance or ave speed once I am done riding.
somone might've said this already...dustin73
May 26, 2001 12:43 AM
but, i used to take mine off 'cause i'd look down thinking i'd see 22mph, and i'd see 15. that'd make me mad so i'd speed up, and end up dieing. finally the battery died, thank god, so i rode without it for a while. then i started wanting to know how far i had ridden, so i'd hop in my truck and waste gas driving my bike route. finally, i gave in again, and put it back on. only now, instead of miles per hour, it shows kilometers per hour and time, that's all. i can't get any other function like time or avg speed. so after that happened, i made the bracket thingie loose enough so that i could turn it over while riding. that way, when i'm done, i can see what my stats are...well, avg speed at least.
you are not alonegeezer
May 27, 2001 12:02 AM
I quit using computers and heart-rate monitors about 7 years and I don't miss them at all. The only measurement device I wear riding is a wristwatch.

When I used to use a cycle computer, I found that I got way too wrapped up in average speed. I found all sorts of excuses as to why my average speed was slower than I thought I should be going: it was windy, it was hilly, I was tired from the previous day's ride, blah..blah..blah. Turns out that it just doesn't matter. Riding is what matters.

One thing I have noticed is I'm actually willing to push myself harder on hills without a computer. Before, I knew that attacking hills would actually slow my overall pace because of the recovery needed over the top. Without a computer, who cares about overall pace? ATTACK!!

I must admit that during the several years that I did use a computer and heartrate monitor, that I learned a lot about pace and the effects of weather conditions, route difficulty, fatigue and such. I also learned what different cadences feel like, and how the heart responds when fresh vs tired. However, once I learned those things, there was no need to keep tracking them.

I'll never use a computer again. Don't even need them for touring, because I don't like cue sheets. I much prefer maps instead. That way I can deviate and do whatever I want and still get to where I'm supposed to be.
May 27, 2001 10:00 AM
we have no real need for computers on the bike yet they exist and so we assume the need. apaches had no real need for horses but yet they assumed the need when offered. i have no real need to exist, yet here i am. the form we take is ever changing but constant. our needs vary but remain the same. tomorrows needs are todays dreams. our early needs have vanished as vapours from the primeval forest. we are all a form of energy making our material debut. a flicker and back to the cosmos. use the computer as your needs arise. abandon it and be free for that infinitesimal moment. old needs recede replaced by new. need is never empty. time does not exist except for our need of it. what is the need for it all. where did we come from and where are we going. do we need to know. if we could find that one door to open would we leave it closed. would true knowledge answer all of your questions or none. ride the bicycle. it will pass and so will your need.

cheers from the back forty.