Friday, November 5, 2010

Triathletes: I Need Bike Advice!

  This post is going out to all my amazing triathlete readers.  I need help!!  I want to start training learning to ride a road bike as soon as possible, like yesterday.  Only problem is my current bike looks like this:

     Not very conducive to racing, I would think.  So I've started looking into purchasing a road bike, my birthday is in a week-ish and I have already talked to Matt about considering it my birthday present.  It doesn't matter if how we split the cost, it is all "our money."  
     I have looked at some bikes online, but I don't know what I am looking for, how cheap I can go and still get decent quality, if there are sites that have cheaper prices/ used bikes.   Yesterday I stopped in a local bike store so that I could talk to someone who knows about bikes in person.  The older gentleman that I talked to pretty much tried to sell me a brand new 2011 $1,000+ road bike.  The bike was beautiful, but I am not ready to drop a grand for my first sprint triathlon.  The other option he had for me was another brand new-not even out of the box yet $800 road bike which "had the same quality as the more expensive bikes."  Still a little steep for my first bike.  
      I decided to stop in Sport's Authority and see what they had as far as road bikes.  They had one women's bike for $450, I just tried to find it online right but I don't see it.  They do however have this one online for $209!
Is this doable for getting started?  I still plan to be competitive and go for time, as opposed to just completing it.  

I also found this site:, which seems to have some nice bikes for discount prices.

For example this bike:

Originally $1595, Now $600

Questions for all you experienced tri-ers out there:

What are the best sites for good bike deals?
What should I be looking for in a bike?
How will it effect me if I go for a cheaper bike?
Best brands?
What other bike equipment do I need?
Anything else I need to know?

Help! Please :D

Note: The tri that I have scheduled to be my first is at the very end of August, but I have been contemplating strongly leaning towards entering one in June/July in order to gain some experience.   I really want to kick ass in the August one and I doubt things will go smoothly without any prior tri experience.  


Julie said...

I'll preface this by saying I don't know much about bikes. I think the main advice I got from most people though, was to spend at least a $1000 for a decent bike. That being said, my friend did her first Ironman on a $700 bike from REI.

I did my first tri on a MOUNTAIN BIKE (a half ironman at that!) so although I much prefer having a road bike, any bike "will do". The problem with the cheaper bikes is probably that they'll fall apart on you eventually. If you can find a great road bike on craiglist for cheap, that's always a good option, too. However, I found it really hard to find the right fit doing it by myself. At the bike shops, they will fit you.

Not sure if this was helpful at all, but have fun with this sport! It's all about the fun!

Big Daddy Diesel said...

What is your email address, this will be a lengthy conversation

Katie said...

Thank you Julie, definitely helpful!

BDD~ I knew I could count on you for advice lol

Jeff - DangleTheCarrot said...

BDD will help you out! He is my go-to-bike-question-guy. He'll probably tell you to check out craigslist in your area for a used bike. You can also go to and go to the classified section. I picked up a nice Trek 1000 for my wife on for like $300. AND usually they are well maintained bikes b/c most BT peeps are crazy bike people like us and their bike usually live in the living rooms like our bikes!

Katie said...

Thank you Jeff! I'm hooked on BT now :) BDD did give me great feadback!! There is so much out there though, I'm still deciding.