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Fifty Plus (50+) Share the victories, challenges, successes and special concerns of bicyclists 50 and older. Especially useful for those entering or reentering bicycling.

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Old 09-03-05, 02:34 PM   #1
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In celebration of LookinUp's birthday. I rode my age today. Longest ride I've ever done and I'm only 51. The weather was really perfect and I didn't tire until the final few miles. Riding time was 3 hours 20 minutes and 51.84 miles which gave me an average speed of 15.5 At one point I had a nice surprise, two riders came up alongside of me in line and said to jump on if I wanted. I was riding about 17mph and found that as soon as I joined onto the second rider we were moving along at 22mph. Only rode with them for 2 miles as our paths went differently from there. It was nice though, that's the first time I have ever ridden with someone other than my children.
It is late afternoon now and I am feeling a little sore in the thighs, but it was a great day.
Happy Birthday LookinUp. You talked me into this and many others added terrific tips and suggestions.

Last edited by p8rider; 09-03-05 at 07:52 PM.
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Old 09-03-05, 02:44 PM   #2
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Great going P8Rider!!!

Just got back myself from stage 1 of my ride.

Funny thing is that I was using a pretty new bike, so I got up early this morning, did my weights, had a small meal, then attached the saddle bag, water bottle cage, and loaded up the tire jacks, patch kit, etc. I had to work until after 10:00 last night, so I'd asked my wife to pick up some CO2 cartridges, but she accidentally got the wrong ones.

Thus, I had to change my route to one closer to home, where I repeated circuits more frequently to avoid being stranded with a flat. Finished about 50 miles, when I decided to take a break and ride home to finally get some food. Around a mile from home, I hear a pssst. One of those thorns had poked a hole in my tire. Slow leak made it home at about mile 53.

Gonna eat lunch, then burn it off on another of my bikes to complete 65-66 miles.

Thing is, on my new bike, it was pretty darn easy keeping up a good pace. Even sped all out for a couple of miles toward the end.

Hope your birthday ride and celebration are going great, LookinUp.
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Old 09-03-05, 03:36 PM   #3
In Memory of One Cool Cat
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Bravo, both of you guys!
Dead last finish is better than did not finish and infinitely better than did not start.
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Old 09-03-05, 04:15 PM   #4
Berry Pie..the Holy Grail
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Back in, showered, feet up........ 63 miles aahhhh. Was a nice time, especially knowing that others across the country were out there, too. One flat, and then I tore the stem off the tube pumping...pretty typical for me. Good to carry a spare tube. Gets dry/dusty up in the foothills this time of year, but in a month it will feel like autumn in the mornings. Big Congrats to the guys above...especially for making their first 50plus mile ride! Once that barrier is down, things just get better.

P8rider, glad you had the experience of cruising fast with other riders....another new dimension to rideing. I've never done a century....maybe a goal for us to shoot for. (Next, we'll be getting matching logo jerseys..."FiftyPlus Velo" or something.)

Now for a large slice of LookinUp's b'day cake....virtual of course, but still sweet!
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Old 09-03-05, 05:08 PM   #5
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Got up a little late this morning, too late for a club ride and my main riding partner was out of town. I grabbed a a banana some GORP and filled two water bottles And jumped on my bike for a ride of indeterminant length. IT was cool and almost windless so I headed down the Santa Ana River Trail, here in Orange County California. I live at one end of the trail and its 27.5 Miles to the Beach. I resisted starting off to fast but soon settled into my 18-19mph pace about mile 10 I caught up with another biker eligible for our forum and soon saw our speed increase to 20. We passed a thirty something on a nice bike aand then he passed us. We sped up a bit caught, passed and dropped him. We even passed a pack of 20 somethings and dropped them as well. I couldnt resist a mild insult as we went by. ! We slowed and chatted for a couple minutes and he told me he was turning around at mile 10 and asked how far I was going. Just then I remembered the "Birthday Ride" and told him "maybe all they way to the beach". Although I have been only riding for a little over a year and only averaging 100 miles or so a week I had made this ride at least a dozen times and except for the first time and the first time after an injury completed it easily. I got to my favorite part of the ride, a treeline shaded section slightly downhill and hammerred for 3/4 mile and accidentally dropped my partner for the last half hour or so. No big deal since this is where he was turning back anyway and I was going to the beach. I reached the Pacific Ocean in near PB time ! I rode along the beach for another 3 miles and briefly considered riding a town or two over to get the ride into the 60's or 70's ! I stopped for ice and gatorade refills and ate my half banana at abeach consession. I watched the girls for no more than 5 minutes and headed back. I felt great. Bacj to the beach head I was a little over 30 miles and headed back up the trail towards home. I am usally fast in this section 18.5 to 19 as there is almost always a tail wind. Strangely I was going a a full mph slower yet my heart monitor showed that I was working pretty hard. At mile 35 I passed a couple of cute but not very young biker chicks on nice bikes with their clubs colors. I assumed they were the tail end of a club ride. I passed them but I didnt really drop them. And they were really taking it easy...talking about men ! I got to mile 40 and was having trouble keeping 16 mph. There was shade and a restroom at mile 42 or so on this trip so stopped for a minute. I ate a power bar that I keep in my wedge and jumped back on the bike. Still the ride was getting difficult. The micro hills where the trail goes under cross streets were kicking my butt ! By mile 45 I was sufferring !!! . I was heading for the dreaded BONK!!!!! JUst then I remembered since I hadnt planned any specific mileage I had skipped breakfast. I was running out of fuel. I was plenty hydrated. I wasnt hungry. I even got my heart rate down to the 130's by slwing down to 15. Mile 50 I contemplated calling the wife for SAG support. I struggled on dipping to 14.5 mph over stretches that I do 19 or 20 on day rides. I had one small hill to climb at mile 55. I had wished I had bought that 12/27 but could do nothing about it now. I had to stand in my lowes gear (39/12 ?) to get up that last hill. I occupied myself by composing this for the last 3 miles and actually felt better and was going a little faster thanks to the freshening off shore wind that was pushing me along. Sorry about the long post and happy birthday. Final tally 58.1 Miles in a pathetic 3:34 an average of 16.4Mph since I am 55 I guess I made my goal. Warning: at our age prepare for the ride you are taking! Have a 400 clorie breakfast 2 hours before a long ride and you will avoid the BONK!!!
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Old 09-03-05, 05:16 PM   #6
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Happy B-day Lookinup!
Did your age on your b-day! As p8rider, t'was my longest ride of the year, 65 miles. Left at approx 7am returned at noon tired but content. Of course my hrm about blew a gasket and I look kind of silly walking around with a bicycle seat hanging off of my a-- but a small price to pay. Glad to know that I can do it as I am signed up for a metric century next week-end. I was grateful for the inspiration! Now I'll hit 55 on the 22nd of this month so if you need inspiration for another moderately long ride...
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Old 09-03-05, 06:08 PM   #7
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Got back from finishing my ride.

Stage 2 was completely different. Had a pretty big lunch, waited a bit to digest and was off. Yuck, I shouldn't have left so soon. My legs also had tightened up and, of course, I was now riding a heavier, slower bike, so I took it easy. I was going pretty sloooooooooow. Still, I feel great having done it and now am going to have some Baskin Robbins to celebrate.
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Old 09-03-05, 09:20 PM   #8
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Congrats on your ride, I had to work today buy it was a great day here in the Charlotte Metro area for riding.
I'm planning on doing a ride tomorrow morning, then jumping in the pool for a swim.
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Old 09-04-05, 06:54 AM   #9
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Did it!!! 65 miles - and felt pretty good afterwards. What a nice day (for Florida) - we started at 7:00 a.m., temperature about 81 degrees. There were 9 of us starting out. We did a 26 mile loop and arrived back at the park for water/food and to pick up some more riders. The second loop of 20 miles consisted of 15 riders through a beautiful neighborhood with large banyan trees shading the road. Back to the park for 'lunch' around 10:45.

The third loop, we had about 8 riders. I learned NOT to eat a peanut butter/jelly sandwich while doing a long ride. About 5 miles out, had to stop for a few minutes just to cool down and settle my stomach down. After reading these forums for the past several months, you'd think I would know not to eat something I'd never tried before during a ride. <sigh> Anyway, with much suffering, made the third loop of 10 miles.

On the last 10 mile loop, everyone else had dropped out except my niece and a friend - the temperature was in the 90's by then with a heat index of over 100. By then, my stomach was feeling MUCH better and that 10 miles was easy. We arrived back at the park with my sister awaiting us with flowers and a big smile.

What a fun thing to do! Can't say it was easy, but it wasn't nearly as hard as anticipated. And having all the folks riding with me - both virtual riders and actual riders was such a treat. THANK YOU to everyone who rode with us - I thought about you often and it helped to keep me going.

Below is a picture of the start, the finish, and the signing of the T-Shirt. I had everyone who rode with us sign my T-Shirt - and plan to add the names of all of you who rode.

Thanks again for all your encouragement. I couldn't have done it without you!!!
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Old 09-04-05, 07:00 AM   #10
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Congratulations LookinUp!!!
What a nice way to do a ride, lots of friends involved, great breaks planned, plus my fave, PB&J. Great effort, wonderful pics.
My pics are both from after the ride, when I left the house in the morning no one was up
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Old 09-04-05, 09:56 AM   #11
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Nice pictures both of you. I, unfortunately, don't know where my digital camera is (my daughter borrowed it, but forgot where she put it).
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Old 09-05-05, 01:37 PM   #12
Let's do a Century
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Great job folks! My Bday is coming up this weekend (53) so looking forward to that. I've done 100 mile rides for 5 consecutive weekends so maybe I'll shoot for a "double Bday" ride of 106 miles.......The following weekend is the pretty tough Bridge to Bridge ride that is 102 miles and finishes at the top of Grandfather Mountain. Includes a 13 mile climb up Hwy 181 and 2.5 miles of 9-11% at the very end. Ugh........
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Old 09-08-05, 07:29 PM   #13
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Hi, guys!

Well, I turned fifty today, so I guess I'm eligible to post in this forum now. I couldn't take my birthday ride as planned, however, since my back tire BLEW OFF THE RIM as I was pumping it up! What a bummer! Especially as I'm in a company apartment far from home, with minimal spare parts and tools. GRRRR!!

Anyway, I'm planning to try to put in at least 50 miles on Sunday to celebrate the milestone. I've done quite a few rides in the 30 mile range, but no 50-milers yet, so wish me luck!

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Old 09-08-05, 08:45 PM   #14
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It's a little bit late for me to report, but I will anyway.

My birthday was in August, and I had to attend a wedding on my 'official qualifying' birthday (50.) I made up for it the next day by riding a century. Average speed registered on the computer as 20.2 mph, but with a few social stops thrown in it was about 5 1/2 hours. Due to shifting winds, I had either headwind or sidewind virtually the entire ride. The route was actually the pre-ride of the Assenmacher 100, which I did the following week. The Assenmacher is billed as a fun ride, but since it's relatively flat, a lot of weekend warriors use it as an opportunity to get personal bests for a century. That means it puts a mix of riders on the roads, ranging from slow to pretty fast. Very few serious racers, though; I presume they have more important places to be.

With headwind on only half the route the second week, I managed a 4:38 elapsed. The fastest claimed time I heard was 4:27. I might stick with the idea of 'birthday centuries.' Doubling my age seems like a lot of work, especially 10 or 20 years from now!
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