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workouts for fixed gear?(15 posts)

workouts for fixed gear?Dog
Nov 4, 2001 2:17 PM
What sort of workouts do you fixies do? I'm getting one (just a cheap Bianchi Pista, but adding front brake) Tuesday, but I don't want to over do it right off the bat.

I can pretty much ride flat, rolling, or very hilly terrain here.

Is fixed gear riding harder? How much? How would you compare to riding freewheeled bikes? Thanks.

Part 2: does anyone ride fixed gear on rollers?

Any hints or suggestions for types of workouts, technique, etc?


re: workouts for fixed gear?Ray Still
Nov 4, 2001 3:10 PM
I'm sure not an experinced fixte rider (oct) 887 miles first experince with fixed gear.
What I have learned experiment with gearing start off easy I started with a 46x16 almost to big. I use smaller cranks 165mm (but then again I ride a 49cm frame).
Need to remember you are not going to be able to freewheel I suggest you do your first ride somewhere there is not alot of traffic. you are not going to be able to stop as fast remember you have to pedal thru turns. On downhills you are going to spin like hell. Also rember if there is a bump RR tracks etc on your rides you cross you are going to have to keep on pedaling so slow down before you get to them.
As far as training I'm doing my regular road rides and not as many sprints more of a constant grinding and pushing the gear.
If you have a flip-flop hub (like Suzue) you can use a bmx freewheel on one side and a road or track pitch cog on the other side.
One last thing clipping in your pedals the crank is going to be moving forward so it is a little more difficult to clip in.

Overall it is a blast riding fixed gear it just takes a little time you will probably be sore after the first couple of times I know I was.

Good luck and have a blast.

Ray Still
re: workouts for fixed gear?tr
Nov 4, 2001 8:01 PM
I have ridden about 6k miles fixed gear and i consider it a very normal part of my riding in the late fall,winter, and very early spring. Just make sure you use the right gear for the terrain you are used too. I assume you ride everything and it is probably better to start with a smaller gear than you would normally. If you guess wrong on the gear make sure you guess too low. Getting in and out of the pedals is a little different. I always put one foot in and and rotate (off the saddle) to get in the other pedal. It won't be long before you are a natural and comfortable riding in traffic. The most important thing is too ride with more anticipation and awareness of what is around you. Fixed is a great workout and has really smoothed out my stomping. You will be a natural in a couple of rides, maybe faster. Have fun and you will reap the benefits.
re: workouts for fixed gear?Jiggy
Nov 5, 2001 6:01 AM
Wouldn't consider a $700 fixee cheap- but I'm no lawyer either. Most use ancient horz d/o frames cobbled up with old parts. A true track frame- like the one you are getting- is not ideal for road use. They have too little clearance for fat tires and have angles that are too steep. Pista has short c/s and s/t angles of about 75 degrees.

The difference between fixed and free? You can't coast. Just ride.
got a great dealDog
Nov 5, 2001 6:29 AM
"Cheap" as new bikes go - got one for $450. Figured I might spend that hobbling together the parts. I already have an extra brake and lever to add.

Likely only for shorter rides, so the "beaten up" factor is fairly minimal.


expensive as fixees goBart
Nov 5, 2001 11:28 AM
No way you should have to pay that much. A fixee should be build with an old frame- w/horizontal dropouts as mentioned- and whatever old parts you have. Should only cost you $150-200 at most and that's if you need the frame. Take your time- the hunt is part of the fun- and build yourself up something with character. But then again you might be an immediate gratification kinda guy.

You might be sorry, as said those Bianchi track bikes are tight and you can't fit 25s for the cush factor. The BB is a little higher and they also come with track gearing, usually too high for road use. And depending on how old, the fork may not be drilled for a brake. Round profile track fork blades aren't ideal for road riding either.
Find some fairly easy rollers and go for it.MB1
Nov 5, 2001 7:02 AM
Gearing=somewhere around 42-46X16. You need to be able to get up the rollers fairly well with the gear not quite bogging you down then spin down the other side with control. Going up on a fixed will improve your climbing since you can't take it easy. Going downhill on a fixed makes you spin like a madman. I've found the downhills eventually get to me limiting the length of the ride.
Depends on the gearing and where you will be ridingGreg Taylor
Nov 5, 2001 7:09 AM
A fixed gear a really great to work on leg speed and spin. Gear it short (I use about 75 inches), find a flat route and buzz along at 100+ rpm. In addition to getting leg speed, the fixed hub forces you to smooth out the strokes as well.

In terms of technique, riding a fixie is a breeze. You quickly learn not to try and coast (the crank will snap your leg down pronto) and I tend to stay seated more. You don't lean over in corners as much, and you have to get used to pedaling EVERYWHERE -- through corners, over bumps, etc. Going down BIG hills can be a bit of an issue -- too many RPMs and you can bounce out of the seat. "Back In The Day" the technique was to take your feet off of the pedals and just roll down. I don't recommend that...

One last bit of advice -- careful when you lube the chain as the sprockets can nip fingers. A friend of a friend was lubing his chain, turning the crank to wipe it down, when the rag and a finger got pulled into a sprocket, slicing off part of said finger. If the bike had a derailleur, the finger wouldn't have been munched as bad...
good tipsDog
Nov 5, 2001 7:21 AM
Never thought about just pulling the feet out on fast descents. Must be a real trick to get them back in, though.

Good note on the lubing, too. The bike doesn't coast in the workstand, either, huh?

Can't wait.

Dog, you got relatives in Pennsylvania? Lets see now...MB1
Nov 5, 2001 7:40 AM
Ride a lot, starting to run again, getting a track bike, probably can't sit still. Starting to sound a lot like my wife, hmmmmm.....
millions out thereDog
Nov 5, 2001 9:08 AM
...most are just too busy to buzz in here.

only one Dogpeon
Nov 5, 2001 9:14 AM
Lord of the Board- all hail.
I like to gear it very short and buildAlex-in-Evanston
Nov 5, 2001 9:51 AM
I know I've got an entirely different season than you have, but here's my schedule.

In Dec. (4 months from first race) I start riding a 42/18, and then bump up one tooth per month until Feb. I never go any bigger than 42/16 on the roads.

My humble advice would be to gear smaller than you first think. Advance one tooth in back when your foot speed has increased, not your strength. I think using a fixed gear as a strength building tool misses the mark. Hills are for stength. Fixed is for spin.

Nov 5, 2001 11:01 AM
It comes with a 48/16. I guess chainrings are easy to change. What sort of speeds are you riding flat ground in a 42/16?

42/16 is about 19mph at 90rpmAlex-in-Evanston
Nov 5, 2001 1:05 PM
It's a very good gear for light training, but it really starts to get interesting when you crank it up to 25mph.

If you're not using this bike on the track, I recommend a 42 up front. The gearing your bike came with is for track racing (albeit beginners' track racing - 50/15 is a widely accepted norm for regualr folk), and track racing requires a gear that you can spin up to 35mph or so. A 42 up front will let you use all of the widely available track cog sizes (13-18), but for road riding.

Not to rant, but I see lots of people on fixies with gears too large for their purpose. It's like guys in the gym with too much weight on the bar - just showing off.

Good luck,