Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Riding my blue bike on Madison's Southwest Bike Path while less than optimally trim and thin

Riding the Blue Bike on the Southwest Bike Path
From Gina Kolata's The Bicycling Paradox: Fit Doesn’t Have to Mean Thin:
“When I first got into cycling, I would see cyclists and say, ‘O.K., that’s not what I perceive a cyclist to be,’ ” said Michael Berry, an exercise physiologist at Wake Forest University. Dr. Berry had been a competitive runner, and he thought good cyclists would look like good runners — rail-thin and young.

But, Dr. Berry added, “I quickly learned that when I was riding with someone with a 36-inch waist, I could be looking at the back of their waist when they rode away from me.”

He came to realize, he said, that cycling is a lot more forgiving of body type and age than running. The best cyclists going up hills are those with the best weight-to-strength ratio, which generally means being thin and strong. But heavier cyclists go faster downhill. And being light does not help much on flat roads.
I know just what she means. (I go really fast downhill.)


vfm4 said...

"(I go really fast downhill.)"

me too... but going up the hill i'll rather walk.... LOL

Madison Guy said...

One of the glories of this particular bike path is its nearly three-mile-long downhill swoop into central Madison. And yet, as a former railroad grade, the route to the top of the hill isn't that arduous either.