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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 08-14-09, 09:16 PM   #1
genesis5521
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Wha-da-ya-thunk

I'm 64 years old. I've had a pretty nice Gary Fisher Mountain bike (Hoo Koo E Koo) for over 10 years. I really like it. Most years I just played around on the fire roads with it. This year I started riding it on the road (cause the deer flies were eating me alive on the trails). I just put 80 PSI mountain bike slicks on it.
Three weeks ago I started out with 10 mile road rides (workouts averaging 13 MPH) and thought I was doing pretty good. So I went to 20 mile rides (still averaging 13 MPH). Now I'm up to 40 mile road workouts every other day (still at 13 MPH average). I just can seem to get past that 13 MPH average. I go for 20 miles straight (no stops). Then I take a half hour (3 cigarette) break, and do the next 20 miles none stop. 40 miles takes me just over 3 hours, and I'm hump'n (and I mean hump'n) the whole time at the fastest rate I can sustain (13 MPH average). I use a bike computer and keep meticulous records of my workouts. The route I follow runs East and West. I always run in to a head wind when riding West. My body still isn't use to all of this "abuse". This is all on flat level roads. No hills. No ups or downs. I'm 64 years old, 5'10, 200 pounds, 38 waist. One chart I found said that I'm burning 885 calories an hour. That's 2655 calories burned over 3 hours. That's gotta be a good thing ~ right. I'd like to do a century 100 mile ride, but I think my average MPH would drop to about 12 MPH over 100 miles. I was checking out some road bikes. One store told me that if I'm averaging 13 MPH with a mountain bike, I should be able to average 16 to 18 MPH with a road bike. I just don't think that's possible given my age and level of physical condition. On a physical condition scale from 1 (lowest) to 10 I'd rate myself a 6 (maybe just slightly above average for my age) only because I do 40 mile, 3 hour, sustained work-outs. And much of that is just by sheer determination, and not because I'm in such great shape. If I'm averaging 13 MPH on my mountain bike on a 40 mile (3 hour) workout, what's a realistic average MPH if I got a road bike. Lets be realistic. Given the same level of effort, I don't think it would go up at all. What do you all think.

Thanks Guys

Don <><
PS: Hey I just noticed that I'm a Junior Member now. I joined this forum just 2 weeks ago as a "Newbie". Thanks for the "promotion".

Last edited by genesis5521; 08-14-09 at 09:33 PM.
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Old 08-14-09, 09:21 PM   #2
RatedZeroHero
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i read somewhere it was 6% gain in speed with road bike gearing if you were doing 100RPM...

I'm kinda in same boat I have the road bike but want to do some work (wheels sets) to it before i ride it too much and my speeds have been about 15mph on the mountain for numerous 8 mile rides and a 21 miler and cant wait to get the extra boost to distance and time...

maybe its the smoking?
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Old 08-14-09, 10:18 PM   #3
genesis5521
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Smoking has something to do with it, but I don't think it contributes as much as one might think. I still have pretty good lung capacity. I'm breathing not quite "heavy" when I'm work'n out, but I don't run outta wind. And, at 64, that smok'n thing ain't gonna change. Plus, I ain't get'n any younger. I think my age is the primary factor. I jokingly say that this biking stuff will either cure me or kill me. How many of you are almost 65, weigh over two hundred pounds, and do sustained 3 hour workouts? I'd like to hear from you. Have any of you competed in any any 50 mile rides? That's my 1st goal. Not to win, but just to finish. That's why I'm doing these 40 mile workouts.

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Old 08-14-09, 10:58 PM   #4
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Have you posted in the seasoned citizens threads? I would imagine they would be able to better provide tips for you (far better then this 28 yr old!!!!!!!).....

I got back on my bikes last year (gas prices.....) and I started on a mountain bike. I think the gearing is good to get you a nice base fitness level, but it will only work for you to a point. When I switched to my touring bike, I gained 2 mph on my avg almost instantly. This year, before my kids' started school and my bike failing, I was up to 18ish.

If you have a hard tail, you are losing something from the front suspension. How much, I don't know. I gave up math classes after Trigonometry in high school....
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Old 08-15-09, 12:27 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by genesis5521 View Post
Smoking has something to do with it, but I don't think it contributes as much as one might think. I still have pretty good lung capacity. I'm breathing not quite "heavy" when I'm work'n out, but I don't run outta wind. And, at 64, that smok'n thing ain't gonna change. Plus, I ain't get'n any younger. I think my age is the primary factor. I jokingly say that this biking stuff will either cure me or kill me. How many of you are almost 65, weigh over two hundred pounds, and do sustained 3 hour workouts? I'd like to hear from you. Have any of you competed in any any 50 mile rides? That's my 1st goal. Not to win, but just to finish. That's why I'm doing these 40 mile workouts.


Nope, I'm pretty sure the smoking has something to do with it. My buddy is about 62, not riding very long, 210 lbs, 6 footer and has been doing 65 mile rides with 6000 ft of climbing and averaging about 15 mph. These rides re maybe over 4 hours of SERIOUSLY sustained riding compared to your style. I think you should quit smoking, you'd get there sooner than you'd expect!

Week after week, April, May and June even with 100 degree temps, we rode this mountain while he helped me train for a 10,000 ft century. He eats apple pie alamode during break but doesn't smoke!

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Old 08-15-09, 01:05 AM   #6
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I started my fitness program 4 weeks ago. I'm considerably heavier than you at 266 and 59 yrs. old. I only do 1 timed ride a week. It's 20 mi. and I average between 13/14 mph. I do the same ride for this timed ride and there is one steep hill and one long gradual incline. Riding on strictly flat surfaces I average 15/16 mph. Although I'm younger than you, I'm way out of shape. I suspect the smoking is hurting both your overall speed and your ability to improve those speeds.

You'll notice on this forum there are a lot of successful stories about improving ones fitness. Almost all of them have included some form of lifestyle change. If you're not willing to consider to change your smoking habits, I think you are going to limit your speed and improvement. Not necessarily a wrong choice, but a choice each of us has to make. You seem like a competitive spirit. That spirit may lead you to stop smoking, or you may decide the smoking takes precedent over your competitive nature.

Whatever your choices, keep riding - it will do you good.

John
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Old 08-15-09, 04:47 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by genesis5521 View Post
I'm 64 years old. I've had a pretty nice Gary Fisher Mountain bike (Hoo Koo E Koo) for over 10 years...I just can seem to get past that 13 MPH average. I go for 20 miles straight (no stops)...This is all on flat level roads. No hills. No ups or downs...I'd like to do a century 100 mile ride, but I think my average MPH would drop to about 12 MPH over 100 miles... One store told me that if I'm averaging 13 MPH with a mountain bike, I should be able to average 16 to 18 MPH with a road bike... If I'm averaging 13 MPH on my mountain bike on a 40 mile (3 hour) workout, what's a realistic average MPH if I got a road bike. Lets be realistic...Thanks Guys Don...
Hey, Don. I have a Gary Fisher hard tail with slicks. I found that spinning a high cadence was key to improving my speed. It's not easy, but it's easier, to gear up if you are spinning fast. You just use a "home" gear that is one cog higher every couple weeks. But don't move up until you can spin the old gear at 100rpm, and the new one at 90 rpm or so.

Being in Fl., I have only flat level roads. I can hold 18 on the hardtail over the rides you describe. I also have an old road racer. On the road bike, I can hold about 19-20 over the same ride. The difference is a combination of factors. I think the aero advantage of lower handlebars is a big one, along with thinner tires, and MUCH lighter wheels.

I've ridden quite a few centures (and longer). Your idea of taking off 1 mph is spot on. You're pretty much ready, if you are rolling 40 mile rides every week.

I think a realistic guess is that you could move up to 15 mph with a good road bike. You may find it a bit less comfortable, as you will be bent over the handlebars a bit more. But you could/should be able to improve your speed on either bike by spinning faster, and maybe doing some interval workouts. Good luck and have fun out there.
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Old 08-15-09, 04:57 AM   #8
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Just an opinion (aren't they all). Just changing from MTB to Road bike under the conditions you describe will probably move your average speed up from 13 to about 15. Practice and a lot of road riding will increase you average a bit more. On the road bike you will probably climb small rolling hills faster at higher gearing then on the MTB. You will certainly roll faster on the flats and downhills.


Quit the smoking. (I did after 30 years) In about a year, you will find your endurance to be better, other people will be more comfortable around you. (you do smell like an ashtray you know) and most importantly, you will have a whole bunch of disposable income to spend on bikes. Every time you would have bought a pack, put the money in the fun fund...........you will be shocked.

Good luck. Its not easy. It hurts and it is frustrating. Many never make it. If you do congrats.


Edit: By the way, I'm 63, 6'0" and I ride between 200 and 220 lbs depending on the time of year. I build my own bikes. I quit smoking in 1992 and all of those estimates are real..............mine.

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Old 08-15-09, 06:04 AM   #9
zoste
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My personal experience:

Last year, on a hybrid outfitted with road tires, I was averaging about 12.5 mph riding the same 6 mile loop around my neighborhood. I bought a road bike (Salsa Casseroll) and the first week that I had it I averaged 13.27 riding the same loop. I know the numbers are accurate because I was keeping track on 'Map my ride'.

I have to admit that I had similar tires on the hybrid and the road bike (700 x 32's), so the increase in speed was less drastic than if I'd had narrower road tires. I've switched to 28's on the Casseroll, but I can't compare speeds because I've moved and no longer ride the same loop.

As an aside: quit smoking when you want to, not because somebody else tells you to.
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Old 08-15-09, 09:33 AM   #10
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I smoked for 20+ years here myself... towards the end of my 'smoking career' I had no air what-so-ever... worse yet is when I had my shoulder surgery they gave me a nerve block and it affected my diaphragm so even though i wasnt smoking it was more horrible than before but thanks to cycling I have had my diaphragm drop and i have lots and lots of air now...

21 miles is my longest ride ever...

I feel I could easily double it with a little more work and my road bike...

for me know I am working on getting shape on the MTB and riding some killer trails I know...

this winter I want to do www.physiquetransformation.com and hopefully drop 50lbs or so and come out in the spring on the roadie blasting... and busting some singletracks!!!

...
time will tell for me

PS I am 40 years old and a recovering nicotine addict and recovering alcoholic... I have earned my chops
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