Diminishing returns in road cycling - Your thoughts

Is that what you understand by diminishing returns?

Need to get back to some shit… want to hear more opinions and visions on this.

I guess the diminishing returns principle also applies to vibrators :rofl:

I didn’t realize the “priming effect” my username had :sweat_smile:


Either she knows or they know. Freud…

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Post-ride typo, not a Freudian slip.

Then the slips only concern one, who’s happy with the overall performance improvement due to the rides that also provoke typos. All clear now.

I like the initiative @mad_masala , but it seems like no one knew what you wanted to talk about :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

My :2cents:

I talked about this with a friend who works at Peleton and about how his indoor bike is ridiculously expensive, but at the same time, he knew how much my bike (and the maintenance/lifestyle that comes with it) and it really came down to how much you actually use the bike.

My yearly mileage is nothing to brag about, but in terms of elapsed/moving time on my bike for the year, I am seeing that every penny was well spent. The comfort a mid-high end bike gives me on a long and hilly ride (in my opinion) far exceeds one in low end of the spectrum.

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A post was split to a new topic: Upgrading road bike wheels, a dilemma

Sure. You ride more but you may get less out if it because once interesting rides get kind of routine.

But I wasn’t sure what you meant so I didn’t reply.

They hear us. Well, nothing much to hear here as per yet to be honest :smiley:

I’m all for doing things on the cheap and for putting most of the responsibility on yourself (and not the best wheel set, for example). And related to this, many of us could save big bucks by first losing 5-10 kilos.

But…I can really understand how having a bike that is beautiful and a bit expensive could really help with the motivation. And I can understand how competing in cycling and triathlon races could make you want some upgrades to buy minutes.

For me, my amateur tri racing days might start up again, but as always, I will take great pleasure in using my cheap bike to beat all the other old guys.


Sometimes it’s about efficiency. I am all for blaming yourself for lack of prep or training, but sometimes there’s a cap to what your equipment can achieve.

For example, if you are at your optimal cadence/heart rate/power/speed for a time trial, but wearing a loose jersey that’s being blow in the wind, you can only do so much with what you have.

It’s an upgrade when you buy a better fitting kit, but does not necessarily mean you are spending a fortune on an aerosuit.

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Or at least one with reasonable stamina.

I spent a lot on my race bike in 2004. Rainbow cycles, tiny shop at the President house end of RenAi road. Is it stil there? A first gen carbon TCR zero. And stuck a campy record set on it. I have replaced the wheels since then with another set of hand made carbons, a couple years ago. And I’ve worn out two seats and four sets of pedals

But I’ve got more miles out of that bike than any car I’ve ever had. Over 250,000 km now. And much more fitness, experience, tasting the wind, smelling the forest, experiencing the absolute ups and downs of each road and track I’ve ever ridden on. A few podiums, mostly not. Miles of pleasure. Miles of pain. Miles of eating the stem. Miles of ass burn and leg cramps and bonking in the heat n the mountains. But all good. So much a part of me! Why regret spending as much as you can afford on one of the most important parts of your life!

But yes, for twice as much I could have had another Colnago. A C-40 at the time, if I recall. And would it have been better? Probably not by much. Anyway, I still have a 1983 colnago so why would I need another one?


You sir lead an interesting life.


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I read the title and thought he was asking about diminishing returns in terms of physical fitness. For example, I’m riding more miles but only getting a little bit fitter!

Then I thought perhaps he means diminishing returns in terms of enjoyment. I’m riding more miles every week but it’s not making me happier!

Oh, you’re asking how many dollars to spend on a bicycle purchase? This will be variable dependent upon the individual, the budget, and the intended use.

In the U.S. I would expect to spend around $1,700 to 2,500 on a road bike. Spending more than that would not make me faster or happier.

An inexperienced cyclist or beginner could buy a cheaper bike just to figure out if they enjoy road cycling. The competitive racer or anyone who rides more than a couple hundred miles per week may want to spend more for their own personal reasons.

Sometimes it pays to buy a cheaper bike from a really good shop, just so you can build a relationship with the people who will make sure you are fitted properly to the right sized bike, help you maintain the bike, and provide encouragement and advice in lots of other ways.

400 km per week is not a lot if your work commute is 20 km each way and you do a long day every Saturday and a recovery ride on Sunday. Or a race. And you also add 50 km training sessions in the evening on your way home. Thats 20 -25 thousand km per year That does add up. Now I’m only 10 k per year or less. Getting soft and fat.