General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike? Rss Feed  
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2017-04-13 3:11 PM


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Subject: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?
Comfort wise, I'm not a big fan or being in aero (have had a tri bike for about a year) and felt much more comfortable on a road bike (which I sold). I'm planning on racing in a 70.3 this summer. Do I just need to suck it up and learn to love aero, look into a bike fit, or does it make sense to look into returning to a road bike? Thanks for the advice...


2017-04-13 3:19 PM
in reply to: 0

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Subject: RE: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?

Is it just comfort, or handling?   Handling just takes getting used to.  But if comfort, have you had a fit on the bike? [ETA if I could read right, looks like you have not   )    TT bikes can be uncomfortable if not fit correctly so wonder if that's the issue.   The bike may not be the correct size for you

But ultimately you have to ride what you are comfortable on   Plenty of folks do HIMs on road bikes (i'd still recommend a fit, with clip on bars though)



Edited by ChrisM 2017-04-13 3:20 PM
2017-04-13 3:42 PM
in reply to: benjico17

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Subject: RE: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?
I agree with Chris. FYI, when I did 70.3 I did it on a road bike with clip-on aerobars and was glad to have another place to put my hands.
2017-04-13 7:45 PM
in reply to: benjico17

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Subject: RE: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?
Originally posted by benjico17

Comfort wise, I'm not a big fan or being in aero (have had a tri bike for about a year) and felt much more comfortable on a road bike (which I sold). I'm planning on racing in a 70.3 this summer. Do I just need to suck it up and learn to love aero, look into a bike fit, or does it make sense to look into returning to a road bike? Thanks for the advice...


Some of the best pro hardly ride their TT bikes. Sebastian Kienle probably rides it about 10% of the time. Many opt for road bikes for comfort.
2017-04-13 8:32 PM
in reply to: ThomasGerlach ProTri

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Subject: RE: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?
These threads always confuse me. I found my tri bike way more comfortable than my old (cheap) road bike. Holding myself up made my shoulders tired and sore. Once I got used to the clip on aerobars, I feel in love. I then got a tri bike and it just seemed like a natural fit. I did get a free bike fit buying it though.
2017-04-14 7:50 AM
in reply to: Blastman

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Subject: RE: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?
Your position may be more slack. Many professionals ride aggressive positions to go faster aerodynamically. They first and foremost put a lot of strain on the neck.


2017-04-14 11:46 AM
in reply to: ThomasGerlach ProTri

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Subject: RE: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?
I ride in a pretty aggressive position and I am still way more comfortable on the TT bike than a road bike. The only time I ride a road bike is for group rides. I get a big push riding with a group, so that's why I do it, but I always end up with shoulder soreness after. I can sit on my aerobars for hours without issue.
2017-04-14 1:34 PM
in reply to: ThomasGerlach ProTri

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Subject: RE: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?

Originally posted by ThomasGerlach ProTri Your position may be more slack. Many professionals ride aggressive positions to go faster aerodynamically. They first and foremost put a lot of strain on the neck.

Could be but also, not turtling your head as much and relaxing helps quite a bit.  Frameless glasses or a visor make it easier to look up the road.

Pros can endure discomfort a little more because they're not on the bike as long.

2017-04-14 3:00 PM
in reply to: 3mar

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Subject: RE: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?
I'd say I'm equally comfortable on the road bike as I am in aero on the tri bike. In general I'm more comfortable in aero, but I do like to give my elbows a break every once in a while.

What specifically is causing you the discomfort? Is it your elbows? Shoulders? Back? The solution could be a few different things. One might be fit - adjusting your bars, stem. or saddle might make things more comfortable. Another possibility could be core strength - get some planks done on a regular basis might get you in better shape to hold aero for longer periods.
2017-04-14 5:01 PM
in reply to: benjico17


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Subject: RE: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?

Could be a couple things in your case, but it would be shame to have an aero TT bike and not ride it because it's too uncomfortable. 

1. Make sure you're not in a wacky setup

Usually this isn't a problem if you got some sort of fitting at a bike shop, but you should check youtube for 'aero positioning' just to get the basic recommendations for aero positioning. They're pretty simple - stuff like 1-4 inches of seat to aerobar pad drop, elbow angle, etc. Photo yourself from the side and make sure you're not in any wacky setup.

2. Get it comfortable

This may mean a less steep body position. One easy way to check it out is to do a trainer workout and just put some folded towels under your elbows to give yourself 1-5 cm of extra height and see if that helps things. If so, you can then add spacers to the stem to get a similar position. 

3. Train more in aero

If your discomfort isn't too bad, and you have a reasonable position (you can just find youtube videos that tell you the simple guidelines to a basic aero setup), your pain should improve as you acclimate to the position. Even a perfect aero position will be uncomfortable to someone who has never spent any time in it or a lot of time in the drops on a road bike. 

 

2017-04-14 9:31 PM
in reply to: 3mar

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Subject: RE: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?
Originally posted by 3mar

I ride in a pretty aggressive position and I am still way more comfortable on the TT bike than a road bike. The only time I ride a road bike is for group rides. I get a big push riding with a group, so that's why I do it, but I always end up with shoulder soreness after. I can sit on my aerobars for hours without issue.


Hey if it works it works. Can't argue with that.


2017-04-14 10:16 PM
in reply to: ThomasGerlach ProTri

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Subject: RE: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?
I'm similar--have a nerve issue in one hand from an old injury, so I always struggle with that with long rides on the road bike. After a while it will make my arms feel tight as well. But I can stay in aero for hours with little problem. I was really worried when I started riding in aero because I heard all these stories about sore back/neck, but haven't ever really had that despite fairly aggressive position. I guess my upper body is pretty flexible, and I have a small head! Would suggest the OP get a professional bike fit and mention the issues he's having.
2017-04-17 1:51 PM
in reply to: benjico17

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Subject: RE: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?
When I bought my first ti bike, I bought a used bike that I thought fit and asked a bike fitter to do his thing. I was never felt completely comfortable on the bike and I found myself riding my road bike more often. When I finally got another tri bike, I went to a fitter first, and picked a bike that really fit well. Since then, I don't have any issues with sore back, discomfort, etc. I rarely ride my road bike any more. For me, the fit was key.
2017-04-18 8:10 PM
in reply to: 3mar


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Subject: RE: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?
Originally posted by 3mar

I ride in a pretty aggressive position and I am still way more comfortable on the TT bike than a road bike. The only time I ride a road bike is for group rides. I get a big push riding with a group, so that's why I do it, but I always end up with shoulder soreness after. I can sit on my aerobars for hours without issue.


Yeah I think there's something amiss if you're not comfortable on your aero bars. A full IM, you're down on the bars for 5hours+, if you can't get comfy you're going to be in big trouble. That said, if you're not that serious about triathlon there's nothing wrong with racing with a road bike. I have a friend who is a BOPer and just likes to race, doesn't care where she comes and she ditched her TT bike and is now back on a roadie with no aero bars.
2017-04-19 10:05 AM
in reply to: benjico17

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Subject: RE: Really Hate Aero...Stick with it or switch back to a road bike?

I almost cried after the first ride on my Tri bike. Thought I made a huge mistake. It took some time but I love my Tri bike now and can stay aero for long time periods without any issues. My road bike stayed in the garage collecting dust so I finally sold it.

My Tri bike was new and I got a good fit by the bike shop. We made some small adjustments after a couple of rides. So I would recommend not only getting fit but providing feedback to shop on what issues you have with the comfort.

Bottom line: Go with Road bike if you can't get comfortable on the Tri bike. You have to be comfortable on the bike since you will spend hours on it.
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