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  1. #26
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    my instant reaction was time for new girl friend.... sometimes sports bring out the
    real person.. maybe there are other solutions, but just sayin'

  2. #27
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    I will say it again, this is why my DH cannot have a road bike. Anyway, sounds to me like she really doesn't like riding. I ride with blokes who are great riders and they don't complain or coach, they know I will ride as hard as I can. I also ride with women who are great riders and women who are not, but we all have fun.

  3. #28
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    I always thought you needed to sail to Hawaii on a small boat to learn all you needed to know about your girlfriend. Guess I've just discovered that there's an alternative...

    Best of luck to you,

    HD

  4. #29
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    I bought a tandem and my wife and I tried to ride together on it and she shrieked at me the whole time saying that we would fall and I was going to kill her.

  5. #30
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    My workaround with my wife is she rides her hybrid on the bike path and I walk the dogs (at fast pace). She goes maybe half a kilometer and turns around to ride back to us, sometimes several times between stops. When she rides back to us and wants to stop and get some water, we hang out until she wants to ride away again. This works out for everyone- the dogs and I get to walk at a faster pace than when she walks along with us, and she gets to ride her bike at her own pace.

  6. #31
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    I think it is good to share hobbies, but you should also be realistic.

    Somehow you've made bicycling into a ultra-competitive sport, rather than just going out and having fun. I will say that I always hated riding with my older brother because no matter how hard I pedalled, he would always say I was going too slow, and offer to push me.

    Anyway, on the weekends, you need to relax.

    Next weekend, try a fun/leisure ride. Just the two of you. Leave all the bike computers home. You don't need to know how fast you're going, just that the pedals are turning. Your GF sets the pace, and you need to stay with about 30 feet of her at all times (front, back, side), except perhaps on steep descents, or other unsafe conditions. No need to draft, unless one of you is exhausted at the end of the ride.

    Find a scenic 20x20 ride, or whatever is appropriate, and go watch the trees, birds, flowers, views. Stop at all the "Viewpoints". Even take a few pictures if you want.

    In Yogi Bear Fashion, pack a pic-a-nic basket. Even a bottle of wine if you wish. At the halfway point, sit down for at least a half hour to an hour picnic lunch. Fishing Poles?

    You can talk about the birds, the bees, the trees, and the flowers, or whatever you wish.

    Forbidden Taboo Subjects will be:
    • Speed
    • Fast/Slow
    • Muscle Strength/Weakness
    • Spinning, Cadence, Gearing
    • drafting
    • Bike Racing
    • Time, other than what it takes to get home before dark.
    • Perhaps exclude work.


    If your bike is incapable of carrying the necessary gear, then put a rack on a hybrid/cross/MTB, and take it... not as mocking, but because you need it to carry the cargo.

    I don't care if you need to go out on a Century warm up or cool down ride, but the ride you'll be on will bet with you and the GF.

    You can try renting a tandem, but I'd try to get it to work first on individual bikes.

  7. #32
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    Get a tandem, she'll never fall behind again

  8. #33
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    You nearly hit the nail on the head in your first post, IMO. The answer is to get her a coach who is not you (and is not that LBS lackey that tried to help pull her up the hill on the shop ride). The coach will tell her the same things that you are telling her. She will listen to the coach and will progress. I have seen it a thousand times in tennis. Wives (and girlfriends) seem to love coaches.

    You will then only be responsible for resisting the urge to point out that you told her the same thing her coach told her when she gets excited about all the progress she is making under his tutelage.

    Be prepared for a bunch of sentences that start out "Scott (or whatever his name ends up being) says ......." Be a duck and let it roll off your back and enjoy your rides at the more reasonable pace.

    I am sure there is some sort of psychological phenomena at play here - but that's unimportant for the purposes of going faster.

    Good luck.

  9. #34
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    And stay away from the coaching sessions. Very important.

  10. #35
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    Independent coaching may help some, but I still believe that you are doomed to fail if you set biking up as a competitive sport between the two of you, where you always win, and she will always fail.

    It is not how fast you get to the finish line, but the path you take to get there, and how many roses you smell on the way.

  11. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
    Independent coaching may help some, but I still believe that you are doomed to fail if you set biking up as a competitive sport between the two of you, where you always win, and she will always fail.

    It is not how fast you get to the finish line, but the path you take to get there, and how many roses you smell on the way.
    Agree, but is that what the OP is trying to do, or is that how his partner is making it out to be?
    While we are free to choose our actions, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions. - Stephen R. Covey.

  12. #37
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    Boy, I don't know about what motivates people when they ride. I can't think of any reason that people who decide to ride together don't simply ride together and understand that the faster rider wants to ride slower and the slower rider should just enjoy the ride at his/her own pace.

    My wife and I, when we go for a ride together, we just ride together. She wants to ride with me, I want to ride with her. Simple concept. Sometimes we talk, sometimes we don't. Side by side whenever possible. I generally lead downhill (I go a lot faster and just soft pedal at the bottom until she catches up.) She generally leads uphill - slowest sets the pace, no? Is that not a given?

    Why ride together if you're not just riding for fun and enjoying each others' company.

    We also have a tandem which really was fun and we did it quite a bit until I bought her a road bike for her 57th birthday to replace her hybrid. Now she just prefers riding the road bike, but the purpose of my riding with her is to ride with her - she gets it, I get it.

  13. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by love4himies View Post
    Agree, but is that what the OP is trying to do, or is that how his partner is making it out to be?
    I don't know. Somehow the situation devolved from going out for a nice Sunday ride to the GF feeling inadequate because she can't keep up, or go the distance.

    Back Seat Driving doesn't seem to help the situation either, even if she asks for suggestions (rhetorically?)

    It may be a personality trait of hers, as she apparently has a lack of patience for group rides with the "C" group, but can't keep up with the "B" group.

    The OP lists "recreational" on his profile. So, I believe that for them to enjoy riding together, all aspects of competition need to be removed from the riding, and they need to find a pace and distance that is comfortable to all.

    No doubt, the rides aren't fun for either of them now.

  14. #39
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    Isn't there a saying that "a couple can have a fun bike ride, if one of them is dead"?
    Oh, wait; I think I got that mixed up with the saying "three people can keep a secret, if two of them are dead". Darn it, sometimes I get these kind of things mixed up!
    Marketing = Deception

  15. #40
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    it sounds like you are asking for permission to move on...you don't need it.

  16. #41
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    She kinda sounds like me when I first started riding. 'Cept I wasn't THIS bad.

    If you want to be the one to deal with this, look upon it as an exercise in patience and support. I'm figuring that what she wants is a supportive Daddy figure. If you don't want to deal with this, I think that the suggestions that some of other posters made in regards to her getting a coach (and you staying out of it) is a great idea.

    Quick question: does she have a nice light bike, or is the thing a boat anchor? In our house, we have one rule when it comes to buying bikes. My husband can get whatever he wants as long as my bike is the lightest bike in the house.

    Good luck to you.

  17. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by il sogno View Post
    In our house, we have one rule when it comes to buying bikes. My husband can get whatever he wants as long as my bike is the lightest bike in the house.
    I'm liking that rule!
    While we are free to choose our actions, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions. - Stephen R. Covey.

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by il sogno View Post
    Quick question: does she have a nice light bike, or is the thing a boat anchor? In our house, we have one rule when it comes to buying bikes. My husband can get whatever he wants as long as my bike is the lightest bike in the house.
    I think the OP answered that question. The GF has a $4000 Specialized Alias which she recently upgraded with a set of $700 wheels. She apparently gave the hand-me-down wheels to the OP, followed by complaining that they made him faster.

    I know that my mother had that "boat anchor" problem with most of the women's bikes from the 70's being of very poor quality until she found a very nice Motobecane classic women's bike which unfortunately has spent far too much time hanging in the garage. But, it did help her have a much more equal bicycling experience on family rides.

    I do believe there is a cynical attitude problem on both sides... When the OP discusses the GF's bike.

    Quote Originally Posted by tailgunn View Post
    She has $4K invested in a Specialized Alias and she doesn't even ride it enough to justify the darn thing.

    But I would wager everything I own on the following: Say I borrow the cruddy old Fuji mtb I gave to my son and ride with her on that, she will be pissed off because I am mocking her!
    He states it is a nice bike and all, but seems to put her down in the same sentence.

  19. #44
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    My suggestion would be to have her do a group ride with other cyclists (women specifically) to see if she honestly likes to ride, and to get a female perspective, rather than just yours. I don't think a coach will help with someone of her personality. She seems stubborn in her own opinions, while trying to appear open minded (but isn't.)

    Not to mention she seems clingy. When my DH gets ahead of me, sure On bad days I may start to think that he doesn't want to ride with me. But then I figure, F him.... This ride is for ME.... And the zen begins to spill in and when the ride is over, we actually feel closer.

    I'll leave the B word out cuz even tho she sounds like one, we have not heard her side...

  20. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by CyclChyk View Post
    My suggestion would be to have her do a group ride with other cyclists (women specifically) to see if she honestly likes to ride, and to get a female perspective, rather than just yours. I don't think a coach will help with someone of her personality. She seems stubborn in her own opinions, while trying to appear open minded (but isn't.)

    Not to mention she seems clingy. When my DH gets ahead of me, sure On bad days I may start to think that he doesn't want to ride with me. But then I figure, F him.... This ride is for ME.... And the zen begins to spill in and when the ride is over, we actually feel closer.

    I'll leave the B word out cuz even tho she sounds like one, we have not heard her side...
    I agree, she's sounds kinda clingy.

    My husband usually rides away from me on climbs then waits for me at a convenient spot. It makes it all the more rewarding when I'm in shape and am able to beat him up the climb.

  21. #46
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    " She won't ride in front, she gets pissed if I ride behind her because she knows that she is slowing me down. Ok, fine. I don't mind going whatever speed you want...but like one of you said- if you want to get faster and/or better, you have to ride with someone that makes you push a little bit. "

    My line always was from the very beginning, and gets repeated...This is not my ride upon which to train, nor is the success of this ride measured by speed or effort level for me. I am here as your domestique, your directeur, your companion, whether in front, alongside, or behind. Put me where you want me, ask or don't ask what you want, and ride YOUR ride, with me along. I will take my rides in my time and measure the success of them in a different way.

    If we are both actually riding hard on the same ride, it is a fairly short distance circuit for a specified time, and we each lap at our own training pace. She enjoys being the rabbit I suffer to catch and it pushes us both. She knows that if she wants to compete with me, its small victories like catching me out with a surprise sprint, or digging deep to keep me from passing her before a certain intersection or point and telling me afterward that all she wanted was to beat me to that point before I continued on.

    To us, the key is not taking the same kind of ride together unless its pure leisure. If it is point to point, not circuits, we know that I am trying to get out of the ride something greatly different than if I was training alone. I thoroughly enjoy helping her suffer through her training rides, and make it very clear that my success and enjoyment comes from her enjoyment of that ride.
    K$

  22. #47
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    Re: Advice needed- girlfriend and I just cannot ride together in a civil fashion...

    Quote Originally Posted by kmunny19 View Post
    " She won't ride in front, she gets pissed if I ride behind her because she knows that she is slowing me down. Ok, fine. I don't mind going whatever speed you want...but like one of you said- if you want to get faster and/or better, you have to ride with someone that makes you push a little bit. "
    First, raise a daughter as a single parent, where she's The Apple In Your Eyes, and you ride a lot with her, happily.

    Then go get a girlfriend after your daughter has grown up and left home.

  23. #48
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    You both need to get over yourselves and remember it's an optional activity you do for enjoyment. Period.

    1. She will never be as fast as you. True. She needs to accept this and realize it's not a bad thing. This realization could take awhile, though, and probably won't happen until she is more comfortable cycling. It may be especially difficult for her to come to the blatantly obvious realization if she is competitive, or maybe if she hasn't taken part in male-dominated activities where strength, lung capacity, and speed make a difference. She may eventually develop better handling skills and balance. Women, on average, have better dexterity. She likely has the ability to do that if she tries and chooses. But she doesn't have to.

    You need to remember that she is a beginner, and hasn't learned to ride her ride. She's too busy being worried about failing to ride yours. Just be nice and ask her to ride her ride, and not yours (don't tell her. ASK). Don't be a jerk about it. Everyone has to do this. Something like: hey hone, do me a favor...please? Just... ride your ride. Don't worry about how fast other people go. It doesn't matter. Okay?...

    2. You. Need to quit expecting her to accept that she is a beginner and you are not, and realize she feels anxious. There is no 'she is not riding enough,' or 'she has reverted to junior high.' The reality is she is worried about looking weak and disappointing you. Get over it. This is how beginners are when faced with doing activities alongside people who are more experienced.

    Oh. And she doesn't want you to figure anything out, or fix anything. She wants you to listen and sympathize. Period.

    Me. I ride with really fast guys all the time. I also like to hang out on Team Estrogen women's cycling forums. When the guys get out of hand, I just compliment them by referring to them as Team Testosterone.

    I think it makes them happy.
    Last edited by aureliajulia; 07-03-2014 at 08:47 PM.

  24. #49
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    You both need to read "Emotional Intelligence 2.0"

    And no, I have nothing to do with the book. I read it. It works.

  25. #50
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    tailgunn, you have a hyper competitive, type A, over achiever GF. JD and Master of X... That sh*t doesn't turn on and off. It just IS. She's like this in more than cycling, you are just riding together so it's smacking you in the face. She's not clingy, she's hard as nails and freaking hates being second to anyone in anything. It's not you, it's just made worse because it's you. Wouldn't matter if it was hopscotch. I could likely write a profile of her father, maybe military, or mother... Either way, she has lived with nothing being good enough her whole life. So she kills things, does nothing half assed and is looking at expensive equiptment to close the competitve gap because she is looking to close the competitive gap by any means necessary. You are cannon fodder to this woman. If you plan on staying BF/GF (and I'm not so sure that has long term potential) then by all means separate for riding. If she wants to ride she rides in groups on her own. You ride and she rides. Maybe at some point you can ride (occasionally) together, like (as suggested) for a picnic or something, unless she gets fast enough... And watch out, she might. Listen bro, lots of people ride horses and love it, but not a lot of people like riding thoroughbreds. It's tough. They are high strung and dangerous. I know.

    She is too smart and competitive to patronize or have ride at some fake pace of yours. Don't even try. Find some things to do that she does. Learn from HER. Meet her family and spend time with them, you will learn more in a weekend than you could ever expect.

    If you ride together and you want to go, then damn it, go. Kill it. She is a predator, she gets it. She sounds completely awesome to me.
    If I knew then what I know now, I woulda done it anyway.

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