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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After all my thoughts and talk around work about commuting, today is the day that I take the plunge. I work 7p-7a so at 5:30 today I will be on my bike which happens to be the heaviest bicycle out there. I swear the damn thing is made of lead. I will be riding a Mongoose full suspension (two springs in the front, and one spring in the back) so stating it is a full suspension is a real stretch. If I can do this I will buy a better bike but for now this is what I have. It is 7.1 miles of flat roads. Wish me luck. I will let everyone know how I do later tonight.

Jason
 

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After a while you can invest in a better commuter bike. You will really appreciate it after lugging that heavy bike around, I know I did. I went from a department store mongoose to a specialized P.1. Although, not a commuter bike, It is a dual purpose bike for me and I love it. I log my distance into excel everytime I ride as an alternative to driving and I see how much money in fuel I am saving.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
So far so good. I put 28 miles on my bike in the last 2 days and that is more riding than I have done in the last 20 years combined. It is kind of strange the looks you get from drivers. Kind of makes you feel like a freak. I am having trouble however with cooling down once I get to work. I have a cool shower and drink plenty of water but still end up sweating for quite a while. Any suggestions? I know that it does not help that I live in Corpus Christi where it is hotter than hell and then add on that damn humidity. Thanks a lot for the encouragement and suggestions.
 

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Way to go, jaysly! I just started commuting yesterday. 10.5 miles each way- not too bad, but the traffic is heII.

Concerning your sweating problem, try drinking ice water (not too fast), and set a small fan on your desk.
 

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pain don't hurt
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The good news is that after awhile you stop feeling like a freak, and you instead start looking at drivers like they are the freaks ($4.20/gal?!?!).

On my way in to work, I allow PLENTY of time, leave early in the morning before the temperature starts coming up, and ride purposely slow (no big ring). When I get to work, I stay outside for a few minutes to let my heart rate and breathing relax.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
You know that is a good idea. I do try to just get there as fast as I can which is probably not helping my core body temp. I do have the itch to buy a real bike but I want to make sure I remain dedicated. The bike I was looking at is the Specialized Hardrock Comp $550. The guy at the LBS told me as long as I put on some appropriate tires it should do fine.
 

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I commute with my Hardrock Sport and it works pretty nicely for me. I kept the factory tires on it. It would probably be an easier ride if I put a more appropriate road tire on for the paved path, but I dont want to have to worry about switching back and forth if I want to go ride a trail. Plus there is a gravel trail that runs along the paved path that I occasionally like to ride if the road bikers are being annoying or if I feel like having a little more fun.
 

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Check your local craigs list or newspaper for a used late model name brand bike. You can usually find something nice for $200 or less that's barely used. Throw some smaller, road friendly tires and possibly a higher rise stem and riser bars for comfort. Ride away and don't fear your commuter getting stolen and being out $500+.
 

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Congrats on the bike commuting. I thought I was the only one that feels like a freak when commuting. I find that the cooling off part after getting to work is by far the hardest part of commuting, but it does get better as you get more fit. See if you can find an express bus in the morning that carries bikes, you could take that, then just ride home. I used to do that years ago, but ultimately, I found that I enjoyed riding my bike more than riding the bus.
 

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About cooling down:

Maybe in the last 5-10min of your ride turn off the power and just cruise along. This allows your heart rate to lower and also serves as a bit of a warm down.

Even if other people pass you, try and stay concentrated. On the way home you can pedal as hard as you want :)
 

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When I first started commuting I would pedal like I was in a race. Thinking that the harder I rode the better shape I would get in. Not so true. Now that I'm a seasoned veteran of the commuting world...:cool: yeah right...I have learned that steady spinning will do wonders for increasing your endurance.

Before you know it, you'll be climbing hills without having to drop gears. Also your time for getting to work will decrease. Just don't think about it and soon you'll notice these things.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
You guys are absolutely right. The sweating problem will resolve itself with better conditioning. I wasn't sure how I would feel about commuting I just knew that I wanted to give it a try. It turns out that I have this huge sense of accomplishment when I arrive at work and when I arrive back home.
 

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jaysly said:
I am having trouble however with cooling down once I get to work. I have a cool shower and drink plenty of water but still end up sweating for quite a while. Any suggestions?
The best advice is making sure the shower is really cold (advice I fail to heed myself). Failing that, I have a couple of spare T-shirts at work that I wear until I've cooled down, then I put on the dress shirt.
 

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Cooling down...

I'll preface this by saying that I'm a person that sweats A LOT! I break a sweat even when doing a very easy pace.

I have a 10.1 mile commute, so I'm going to sweat, and I'm going to be pretty good and drenched by the time I get to work. Luckily, we have showers here at the office. I get to work about 45 minutes before starting time. To cool down, I sit down at my desk with my desk fan on high blowing right at me while I check my emails and such. Usually takes about 15 minutes to get good and cooled down. Then I go take my quick shower, change into my work clothes. I'm usually back at my desk 10-15 minutes early which is great, because my boss is cool with me leaving early to beat some of the traffic getting out of our little executive area of the neighborhood.

My first day of commuting, I made the mistake of getting in the showers too early, only to get out the shower and still be sweating like crazy. First and only time I made that mistake.

...iC...
 
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