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Lately I've decided to do a few solo rides. I was always told it's better to ride in a group because it helps gauge you against other riders. Sometimes when I ride with a group I get frustrated if the group rides at a faster pace and I'm the one who lags behind, on the other hand when I'm with a group who rides slower that happens to be the day that I'm ready to push hard and never go fast enough to warm up. In that case I think of it as a casual ride and just talk alittle more while riding. Even though I prefer to ride in a group or with a friend or 2, solo rides offer alot of advantages in terms of training. Solo or group?
 

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Livin' the Dream
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I rarely ride w/ a group due to my work schedule. Computer and HR monitor tell me if I'm going fast compared to other riders. The biggest drawback to solo though is a computer can't sit on your back wheel and push you. I think a combination of both solo and group riding is best. Most of my buddies won't ride alone, I think they miss out on alot. Solo riding tight singletrack w/ nothing but the sound of your breathing and your drivetrain; pretty damn hard to beat.:thumbsup: As long as you get out there and do it, that's the important thing.
 

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10001110101
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I don't do training rides, but like Asbury said, my schedule rarely permits me to ride with a group. Riding in a group is fun and makes you push harder and try different lines, but as the group gets larger, it takes more time to complete the ride which sometimes isn't an option.
 

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I like to ride with 1-5 other people. Usually it's just 1-2 others who are a little slower on the climbs but a little faster on the tech descents. They sort of help me pace myself on the climbs so I have fun and don't blow up. When I ride by myself I always think I'm going really slow and push myself to hard, making th e ride miserable.
 

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I ride solo due to the fact that my friends don't ride and I don't hang out at the LBS looking for a riding buddy. I used to have some friends that rode, but the after-ride beers had an unusual effect. It used to be, ride for a few hours, drive to get some beers, then it became ride to the bar. One day they just called and said, "We're going to the bar. When you're done riding come join us."

Still, rarely a buddy will call and ask if I want to ride through the park(paved trails)with him and his kids, and I'll oblige. But like Asbury stated, soloing the trails is hard to beat!!!;)
 

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ravingbikefiend
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Most of my riding is done solo so I have learned to push myself as hard as possible.

When I'm riding my mountain bike I will hit singletrack sections over and over until I get them right and then work on getting them right while going faster. When it's XC riding I try to beat my average times over certain sections, and will just do sprints to increase my capacity for top speeds.

There was a time when I could cover more than 40 km in an hour on my road bike and my goal is to get back to this level of conditioning as well as increase my sprint speed where I can hit 60kmh on a consistent basis.

Group rides are great becuase they also push you to ride better and really enjoy being able to hang out with like minded psychos... :)
 

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What's a group ride? Nah seriously then I don't train for anything as I've never raced but we have moved pretty often in the past and kids came along and now I live in a mining town with no LBS & just motorbike trails.
I've always ridden solo and exploring the surrounding bush and trails by myself has always been one of the best parts of riding, no time to get bored of doing the same circuit all the time that's for sure.
At one time my husband did come on a ride or two, but he's not into it and doesn't like going up hills so in reality I did prefer to go by myself, like others have said those sort of rides are treated more as group rides. But from that I came to understand how you would feel like you're not very good if other people are faster / better than you and I can see how you end up pushing yourself more when riding with someone else.

Of course the down side is not really knowing how you would go in a race or where you fit in a group, but hey maybe one day.

It's funny at times I've entertained the idea of putting a notice up at the local shops just to see if there is any mountain bikers in this town, I know I haven't seen anyone out on the trails - well one bike once in the 9 or so months we've been here.

My group rides are out the back on the dirt trails and rolling over the jumps with my 2 & 4yr olds on their "firstbike" type bikes.

I guess in an ideal world you would do a bit of both: some social rides with a group, some solo rides to maintain your riding essence, training rides with a buddy or two who have similar abilities to yourself.
 

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Combat Wombat
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Prefer solo riding for the same reason others have mentioned above. Not that I do not enjoy riding with a group of friends occasionally, but for the most, between my family and work, I ride when I can and not really around a set schedule. This kind of makes it difficult to coordinate riding times with others and it has also gotten to the point where I now look forward to a ride to get away from everything and have some time to myself.
 

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Mostly solo

I'm self-employed so I can ride when I want. In the summer it means being on the trail at 6:30 am or earlier during the week because I don't HAVE to ride on the weekends. But the crew I ride with can only ride on the weekends or after work (too hot for me then) so Sat or Sun we leave to drive to the trailhead about 6 am. Which is not early for me or them, but they have to get back before their wives throw a fit. All the guys I ride with are stronger than me so I push myself as much as I can on the climbs (yes, they wait for me at the top--I'm not that slow, it's just that they are that strong). On the descents, fuggetaboutit! They are so much faster than me it's almost laughable. Again, they'll wait for me. Or not. I tell them go with your flow and I'll catch up. When I'm riding by myself it seems like I'm going fast both up and down, so the delusion is enjoyable!
 

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I ride mostly solo except for once a week. My friends who do ride are never interested they always wuss out on me, so I started to ride solo all the time. I do ride once a week with a group. My LBS has a group ride on Tuesday's. I like to ride both in a group and alone they both have benefits.
 

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mtbr dismember
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Solo group rides

I'm noted for my solo group rides. I'm slower than most so I'm usually solo behind the group. I don't like stopping so when the group stops I keep going. Eventually they catch and pass me, and we continue this leapfrogging most of the ride. I also often go ahead and wait for them to pass for photos.
 

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I'm not very good at riding solo on my mtb. I usually get to the first or second climb, say, "f this" and head home. On my roadie I can ride 30 miles or so no issue by myself. Not sure what the difference is. I prefer mountain biking with friends though.
 

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I ride solo. When I rode with a group years ago,they would get stoned or drunk after a ride and I rode for my health so it didn't work out. I prefer the solitude anyways and I can ride in my own pace.
But once in awhile I'd run into someone who wants to have a little drag race on the trail and I'll race him.
 

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GusTopher said:
I have only rode with other people a couple of times and I slowed them down too much, hahah!
Same here. Although, I do confess... once or twice a year I convince some friends of mine to ride with me. Usually it's the only times that they ride that year. Man, I can smoke them! :D

I actually do ride in a small group when we do road rides (whenever our schedules work out), and I'm working on getting together a weekly riding group at some of our local trails once the ground thaws out.

I enjoy riding in groups if the groups are pretty close in ability. Most of the riders around here will drop me in a heart beat, though. All of them that I've ever ridden with don't mind waiting at the top of climbs and stuff, but I hate making them wait on me, so I usually ride alone.
 

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~I Ride In Circles ~
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I mainly ride solo. Mosly because people are rarely available to ride with. If I do ride with people it's usually around 3 or less. The large group rides of 11+people were fun I have to admit, but there was something missing from it all when that many people were making so much noise and riding too fast at times.

The 2-3 guys I do normally ride with, my brother and 2 friends are pretty fun to ride with. One of my friends def. pushes me all the time because he's pretty damn good. I enjoy seeing what he can do and how he does it. Helps to see how someone else rides.
 

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Freshly Fujified
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Both have merits

Group rides definitely help you to challenge yourself and become a better rider, and it's definitely great to be among other riders. I do prefer solo for a number of reasons though. In group rides, I slow everyone down, and regardless of their tolerance for my lack of riding skills I hate being the one they have to wait up for. Solo rides allow me to ride at my slothful pace, enjoy the scenery, take whatever route I choose, and end the ride when I'm ready to go home.

Bob
 

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Sometimes..

traylseeker said:
Lately I've decided to do a few solo rides. I was always told it's better to ride in a group because it helps gauge you against other riders. Sometimes when I ride with a group I get frustrated if the group rides at a faster pace and I'm the one who lags behind, on the other hand when I'm with a group who rides slower that happens to be the day that I'm ready to push hard and never go fast enough to warm up. In that case I think of it as a casual ride and just talk alittle more while riding. Even though I prefer to ride in a group or with a friend or 2, solo rides offer alot of advantages in terms of training. Solo or group?
its takes a fun group ride to get me out there. Other wise ill ride by myself either commuting or when others are working and im not...
 
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