My quads are knackered too quickly...

CXRAndy

Guru
Location
Lincs
Too low a saddle will overload the quads far faster.

A quick saddle setting.

Put heel on pedal and rotate pedal to bottom of rotation. Your leg should be locked out straight.-adjust saddle to get this position. When foot is on pedal correctly then your leg will have a slight bend on the pedal rotation bottom position.

You can from there adjust a few mm up or down to fine tune
 

bikingdad90

Veteran
Possibly also saddle tilt and for/aft position.
General rule is that the saddle is tilted between 0-2degrees downward and the position is such that the front of the kneecap intersects the pedal spindal at the 3/9 o’clock position.
 

annedonnelly

Girl from the North Country
Thanks guys, I will definitely take a look at my saddle height and perhaps play around with it.

Does leg length/body length ration come to play in how high the seat should be? I have fairly short legs although probably not disproportionate to my body so perhaps I'm barking up the wrong tree there.

Is there any particular reason why I find it just as hard to stand up on the pedals up hill when others seem to indicate that it should make it easier?
I'm OK for a few 'pumps' so to speak but then my quads/legs still run out of power and I still often have to simply stop.

I'm hoping to buy a better bike, more suited for road cycling and wonder if that would make it a little easier or even harder?

I know my front suspension absorbs energy that would otherwise go into moving me forward and I suspect my tyres are not as hard as they should be as the front in particular does seem to flatten out al little (it's not flat as such, it just flattens a little where it touches the road) (I only have a small bike mounted pump which does not go to the psi needed for my tyres i.e. 80 +/-)
The tyres were pumped to around 80psi when they were fitted bt that was a couple of months ago and the bike does stand on them in the garage for long periods.
The tyres don't feel too soft when I prod them with my fingers when not on the bike but that's probably not any indication as I am nearly 13st.
Does it have schrader valves, similar to a car tyre? If so you can use a pump that fits a car. Get the tyres pumped to a decent pressure - prodding with your fingers isn't a reliable method of checking :smile:
 
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Sloth

Sloth

Active Member
Does it have schrader valves, similar to a car tyre? If so you can use a pump that fits a car. Get the tyres pumped to a decent pressure - prodding with your fingers isn't a reliable method of checking :smile:
No, it has Presta valves so my old car foot pump won't fit. I don't know why, it's just what was on the tubes and I didn't know to question it.

Question though, do I need to undo the small nut on the Presta valve before trying to inflate? Trouble is though that when i tried it just started hissing before I even attached a pump so I screwed it closed again?!!!
 

Saluki

World class procrastinator
I switched from long distance running to cycling. Cycling is hard! It takes a while for your muscles to get used to the new movement, load, Time of use etc.
I can no longer run, my cycling muscles protest like hell.
Give it time, don’t rush, don’t worry about speed or distance, just ride a bit and build from there. It’s worth it, I promise.
 

Dogtrousers

Kilometre nibbler
Question though, do I need to undo the small nut on the Presta valve before trying to inflate? Trouble is though that when i tried it just started hissing before I even attached a pump so I screwed it closed again?!!!
Undo the nut a turn or two. Press it in briefly. It should hiss but stop when you release it. This will ensure the valve is moving freely. Then clip your track pump with guage onto it and pump away! When you've finished, do the nut up again.

You may also wish to replace the valve cap afterwards. Depending on which religion you belong to, the valve-cap-and-lock-nut-ites or their deadly enemies, the throw-the-valve-cap-and-locknut-away-ites.
 

boydj

Guru
Location
Paisley
The most common cause of burning quads is pushing too high a gear. You should be using a gear that lets you spin the pedals relatively easily at somewhere round about 80rpm. That's a general average, but may be a bit fast for a beginner, the main point is that the effort you are putting should not feel too hard as you'll want to maintain it for the duration of your trip.

It won't have been helping that your tires are probably nowhere near hard enough. Starting out, you need short journeys on easy routes, staying well within your limits until you have built up a level of fitness and toughened up your body for cycling so you can go longer and farther. Speed will improve as your fitness improves.
 
OP
Sloth

Sloth

Active Member
Thanks, I'm going to order a decent track pump, any recommendations?
I don't want to spend over £30 and want a gauge (with memory marker dial function to easily see required pressure) and at least 160psi rating.

Is there any benefit to paying say £30 over cheaper, £15 alternatives off eBay?
Will I, as a novice casual cyclist just starting out benefit from it (i.e. will it last longer) or should I just buy a cheap and cheerful one?

Currently I'm looking at either a Topeak Joe Blow Sport III (£36) or a Lifeline Professional (£30).

Do I need an air bleed valve function or is it a pointless for my level of the hobby?
 

Dogtrousers

Kilometre nibbler
I'd be inclined to get a named brand like Joe Blow or whatever because it's more likely to last. But that may just be because I'm a fool who is easily misled by fancy names. I have a Zéfal which has lasted yonks and is still going strong.

I had to look up what a bleed valve was. (A bleed valve is a handy feature if you want to be very precise with the air pressure in your inner tubes. It allows you to let a little air out without removing the valve head from the valve. Source) I've never had one and have never missed it.
 

vickster

Legendary Member
I don’t think you need to spend £30. I hated the Joe Blow I had but I think it was the max version, struggled to get anywhere near 100psi.
that said why on earth do you need to get a tyre to 160?!
 
OP
Sloth

Sloth

Active Member
Thanks, yes I don't think I need a bleed valve, not especially anyway or enough to pay extra for it.

I don't want to particularly inflate my tyres to 160 psi but I hit on that figure as it seems to be the upper mid-range of pump track pump capacity, so figured it would ensure plenty of scope or future proofing, should I change my bike to something requiring more tyre pressure or need it for other perhaps non bike related stuff.
I also (perhaps incorrectly) applied the logic that, if I wanted say 90 psi, but the pump was rated to 160psi, then it would be easier as I approach 90 psi than if the pump were rated lower at say 100 psi as it would be approaching it's limits?
 

icowden

Über Member
Location
Surrey
Question though, do I need to undo the small nut on the Presta valve before trying to inflate? Trouble is though that when i tried it just started hissing before I even attached a pump so I screwed it closed again?!!!
Yep. Undo the nut all the way. It shouldn't hiss if you aren't touching the valve. It will hiss as you get the pump clamped on, and again when you remove it..

Re hills and running. My BiL is a hill monster but he was regularly running long distances, marathons etc before he took up cycling and has massive amounts of stamina. He now does a *lot* of cycling. He will run and cycle many hundreds of miles in a month.

Me on the other hand, different story. Like you - short legs. Not like you, not a runner. Like you again, I find hills *hard* work. As others have said, if you don't have legs of steel, then getting onto the lower front ring before you hit the hill and then gently dropping down the gears as the work gets harder is the way to do it. Just keep the legs ticking. The more you do it (apparently) the easier it gets. If it's a steep hill there is no shame in being as slow as, or slower than a pedestrian. In Richmond Park I have cheerfully cycled up a steep hill keeping pace with a slow jogger.

It's about keeping going and getting there without exploding in my book. Not having front suspension and having a lighter road bike definitely helps. In my case, losing 3 stone would help more! A pub or cafe at the top of the hill also helps - though not with the weight loss...
 

PaulSB

Legendary Member
Thanks, I'm going to order a decent track pump, any recommendations?
I don't want to spend over £30 and want a gauge (with memory marker dial function to easily see required pressure) and at least 160psi rating.

Is there any benefit to paying say £30 over cheaper, £15 alternatives off eBay?
Will I, as a novice casual cyclist just starting out benefit from it (i.e. will it last longer) or should I just buy a cheap and cheerful one?

Currently I'm looking at either a Topeak Joe Blow Sport III (£36) or a Lifeline Professional (£30).

Do I need an air bleed valve function or is it a pointless for my level of the hobby?
I had a very good track pump for years which eventually died on me. I replaced it with a cheap one, £25 or so, which I binned after a few months. It was difficult to attach to the valve, the valve core didn't always depress and unatrac attaching the sometimes resulted in a loss of pressure.

I then bought a Lezyne. An excellent pump which I've had no issues with. Expensive but a quality product I expect to last for years - I've always found Lezyne offer good value compared with cheaper alternatives.
 
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