General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Buying a bike for triathlons... please help decide. Rss Feed  
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2013-07-27 8:49 PM


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Subject: Buying a bike for triathlons... please help decide.
Hey everyone, newb here

I did the Chicago triathlon last year. It was my first triathlon too. I had a ton of fun and wanna continue. Back then I rode my MTB, trek 6500. I need to buy the right bike for triathlons now though.

At my LBS I tried Cannondale CAAD 10 4 rvial D in 60 and liked it. Same LBS also recommended an actual tri bike, Specialized Transition Apex in XL, which they would need to order for me. I don't do much road riding, but plan to train at least 4 - 6 sessions a year, before tris, probably not enough, since there is only so much time I can dedicate to the sport ...

My question is what do you recommend, get a road bike, the CAAD 10 and convert it to tri (seatpost/handlebars), or order the Transition Apex? I am not aiming for winning top spots, but I do need to be in the upper part of the median lol.

When is it ok to get a road bike for triathlons??

I tried a lower grade Specialized, I can tell that training with a true triathlon bike is more complicated as turning, braking and gear switching is not as easy while riding alongside casual riders, runners etc. on the bike paths. Bike paths I can use for training are also not exactly as straight as tri bike roads...

P.S. Right now I have a very small interest in road riding other than for competing in triathlons and training for them, on a limited basis. Sorry in advance if I am asking a bad question.


2013-07-27 11:04 PM
in reply to: #4814840

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Subject: RE: Buying a bike for triathlons... please help decide.
Sounds like you should get the road bike due to the lower cost, more versitality, and useablilty. It seems like you could only use the tri bike at races
2013-07-28 12:15 AM
in reply to: m_okulik@hotmail.com

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Subject: RE: Buying a bike for triathlons... please help decide.
Originally posted by m_okulik@hotmail.com


My question is what do you recommend, get a road bike, the CAAD 10 and convert it to tri (seatpost/handlebars), or order the Transition Apex? I am not aiming for winning top spots, but I do need to be in the upper part of the median lol.

When is it ok to get a road bike for triathlons??


P.S. Right now I have a very small interest in road riding other than for competing in triathlons and training for them, on a limited basis. Sorry in advance if I am asking a bad question.


if you said, buy the road bike and use it as a road bike, and race tri's with it....ok, but I wouldn't buy it to convert it to a TT bike.

So I would suggest getting the Transition Apex...if that suits your budget, and it fits you well.

Road bikes are always fine for tri's but usually not optimal...yet if you only have 1 bike, generally it is a good choice. But in your case, I'd spring for the tri bike.
2013-07-28 2:23 AM
in reply to: metafizx


17

Subject: RE: Buying a bike for triathlons... please help decide.
If you are planning to do sprints and olympic distances, I'd say pick up the road bike. It's more versatile as your only bike, and although it isn't optimal you can always add on aerobars in the future. I think 40km/25 miles is definitely fine on a road bike assuming it fits you well. If you're looking to race HIMs/IMs then I'd lean more towards the tri bike.
2013-07-28 7:15 AM
in reply to: m_okulik@hotmail.com

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Subject: RE: Buying a bike for triathlons... please help decide.
Originally posted by m_okulik@hotmail.com

When is it ok to get a road bike for triathlons??



There are no "bad" questions on this site
From your above comment, in my experience (quite a few years) that road bikes are likely the most common bikes you will see at tri races. Beginners/ first time aimed tri racers often hybrids/ mtb as first race or two and the ones that like technical stuff/ have money/ aiming at top spots are likely to have tri bikes.... but in between road bikes are the most common.

Road bikes are most versatile and for someone that won't be a lot of riding, probably the safest bet. Tri bikes are harder to control (gears and brake position for a start) and you shouldn't really ride in that position if there is a lot of traffic, close to other riders or anytime you may need to have quick reactions.
You don't really need to adapt a road bike for a tri - although clip on aerobars are a great compromise (and one I would recommend) If you tell any decent bike shop fitter that you intend to do tri's then they will put the clip on aero bars on and fit you to the best position to use them.

I have been doing tri's for many years and I still love my road bike with clip ons - even did my first Ironman with it. Still love it for training. Plus it is a great bike for going out with family, friends etc.
2013-07-28 9:32 AM
in reply to: m_okulik@hotmail.com

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Subject: RE: Buying a bike for triathlons... please help decide.
If you plan on doing Triathlons for the long term . . .
Get a road bike to start. Like others have said it's versatile, great for training, and can be "adapted" if you choose. A set of Aero Bars, Fast Forward Seat, and a professional fitting can help you accomplish an adequate aero position. A triathlon bike can be acquired after a few seasons, after you've had a chance to compare brands, learn about geometry, talk with other triathletes, etc. It's also a great reward/ motivator that can help with feelings of burnout.


2013-07-28 10:29 PM
in reply to: 0


5

Subject: RE: Buying a bike for triathlons... please help decide.
Hey guys! I really appreciate all your responses. Looks like most are recommending to get that CAAD10 4 I found

Right now I am feeling confident with going with the road bike in 60 and enhancing it with tri upgrades. My goal is to keep it as my only bike for many seasons as I am not into shopping (since every time it really burns all my energy for some reason) nor want to store/maintain two bikes.

P.S.
lol For some reason I just really like the social aspect of the triathlons! You get to meet, race and hang out with thousands of cool and fit people! ... Yet I need reasonable gear too!

Edited by m_okulik@hotmail.com 2013-07-28 10:40 PM
2013-07-29 7:12 AM
in reply to: m_okulik@hotmail.com


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Subject: RE: Buying a bike for triathlons... please help decide.
Originally posted by m_okulik@hotmail.com
I can tell that training with a true triathlon bike is more complicated as turning, braking and gear switching is not as easy while riding alongside casual riders, runners etc. on the bike paths. Bike paths I can use for training are also not exactly as straight as tri bike roads...

P.S. Right now I have a very small interest in road riding other than for competing in triathlons and training for them, on a limited basis. Sorry in advance if I am asking a bad question.

Hijack.

Check the speed limit on the MUP. The ones around me are pretty slow (15mph) which isn't great for training. But with the number of people on the paths with dogs and families they need to have the slow speeds. You said that they are not straight and it also has casual riders and runners that doesn't sound like the proper place to train for racing.
2013-07-29 10:12 AM
in reply to: m_okulik@hotmail.com

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Subject: RE: Buying a bike for triathlons... please help decide.
I liked this article for help with this decision:
http://www.slowtwitch.com/Bike_Fit/General_Fit_Articles/Tri_road_or...
2013-07-30 6:47 PM
in reply to: 1Dude


5

Subject: RE: Buying a bike for triathlons... please help decide.
Thank you for the great link!
2013-07-30 6:50 PM
in reply to: Sidney Porter


5

Subject: RE: Buying a bike for triathlons... please help decide.
Sidney, I totally get what you are saying. Living in Libertyville, IL I need to find places where I can train for races. I don't like riding on the roads where cars are constantly passing me by. I just don't enjoy that. If someone can recommend good places, that would be awesome. Otherwise, I'll have to do some research...


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