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  1. #26
    Senior Member Old Hammer Boy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DnvrFox View Post
    Just enjoy your bicycling. Why make everything so complicated? Life is too short for all these complexities, IMHO! Why does everything have to be longer or harder or faster?
    You nailed it, Denver!

  2. #27
    I need more cowbell. Digital Gee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Weak Link View Post
    I think It'll take me one more year to do the imperial.
    That's not bad. A little longer than 8 hours, but not too bad.
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  3. #28
    gone ride'n cyclinfool's Avatar
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    Many of us have cycling goals and some for different reasons. Some like the thrill of saying I did this many miles in that amount of time just for the sake of the bragging rights. Some like to continually up the goals seeking a higher faster speeds and more miles. These are unsustainable goals at our age (or any age for that matter), IMHO they will turn cycling into a job, or worse - a prison. The trick is sustainable motivation. If I was purely motivate buy the "fun" of cycling, I would ride only on a limited number of days when it's not to hot, not to cold and not too many hills. I ride a lot because it is fun, but I also force myself out on long hard training rides because I know that in the long run it will make everything else I enjoy doing that much more enjoyable. The harder I push myself at riding for exercise the more enjoyable riding for pleasure becomes (about 1/3 of my rides are for the shear fun of it), the better I can ski, hiking is easier and working around the house is easier. When I am fit and strong from riding, I am able to enjoy a life full of a lot of other things more.

    Denver did not understand why some of us talk about farther-faster goals, when I talk about such things this is why. There is a little ego in there, but that only gets me so far. The real driver is being fit for the rest of my life's activities.
    "Of all the things I ever lost I miss my mind the most." Mark Twain
    If all you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.

  4. #29
    Squirrel solveg's Avatar
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    So, if were to translate that into rides, you could also go on rides that were 2/3 pushing, 1/3 enjoyment? That's an interesting thought.

    OK, people, on any individual ride, how much is for fun, how much of it is to push onself?

    I'd say 1/4 of each ride is spent being pushed for me.

  5. #30
    gone ride'n cyclinfool's Avatar
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    1/3 pushing it
    1/3 recovery
    1/3 for the fun of it.
    That seems like a good mix for me.
    Although I have no idea what I would call a riding on a trainer, maybe a purgatory ride...
    "Of all the things I ever lost I miss my mind the most." Mark Twain
    If all you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.

  6. #31
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    I ride because I can !

    If I push for a mileage mark, it's because I feel like it.

    Cycling for me is more of an escape than a means to better health, the
    better health is a side benefit.

    So I think I'm...
    2/3+ for the fun of it
    1/3 ish work, (last leg of a long ride).

  7. #32
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    Seems to me, as an old, slow rider, that being a "good" rider involves a lot more than how far or how fast you can ride. On large group rides and cross-state tours, you'll see a lot of strong riders who can ride fast, or who take pride in riding "a century every day for a week" who are not good riders. Some of them present a danger to themselves and other riders and give cycling a bad name.
    Being a "good" rider means, among other things:
    Having and using good technical riding skills,
    Taking good care of yourself and your equipment,
    Being a safe, defensive rider who respects the rights of other riders and vehicles,
    Ride in such a way that engenders respect for cycling among non-cyclists

    If you want to become a "good" rider, take a LAB Road 1 course
    If you want to become a "really good" rider, take the course to become a league certified instructor...and become one.
    Life is simple- Eat, Sleep, Ride

  8. #33
    Around now and then DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclinfool View Post
    Denver did not understand why some of us talk about farther-faster goals, when I talk about such things this is why. There is a little ego in there, but that only gets me so far. The real driver is being fit for the rest of my life's activities.
    Well, whatever I do seems to work pretty well for me. I feel fit for the rest of my life activities. Of course I try to do things that challenge me. Its is just natural, not something I feel a need to track. Yes, there is a balance. I think I have found it for me.
    Last edited by DnvrFox; 10-07-07 at 01:49 PM.
    DnvrFox - still bicycling, swimming, walking and weight lifting at 74yo is participating a bit in BFN 50+.

  9. #34
    gone ride'n cyclinfool's Avatar
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    DF - wasn't pounded on you. I know you have a balance that works for you - many of us who have been at it a long time do.
    What I see time and time again are folks who start out setting goals and then when they hit that point where gains come hard without major commitment they get frustrated and quit or they get bored because it is no longer fun. Clearly those of us with a life time of riding have not made it a job.

    Didn't mean to offend - BTW:
    "Of all the things I ever lost I miss my mind the most." Mark Twain
    If all you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.

  10. #35
    Senior Member BikeArkansas's Avatar
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    Once again, being the OP, I am somewhat surprised by the subject that came out of this thread. I was looking for standards, I got a discussion on having goals. I actually find this odd. Most of the people that disdain goals actually have described their goals on this thread. Is there something that worries people about admitting their goals. Are they afraid of failing? Who knows? Ceratinly I do not know. I do know that I cannot imagine living without goals. I cannot imagine not being able to admit my goals, for whatever reason. I say that you would not go through the pain of pedaling up a hill if you did not have a goal.
    I started riding my bike to get healthy. Now I try to stay healthy so I can ride my bike.

  11. #36
    Around now and then DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclinfool View Post
    DF - wasn't pounded on you. I know you have a balance that works for you - many of us who have been at it a long time do.
    What I see time and time again are folks who start out setting goals and then when they hit that point where gains come hard without major commitment they get frustrated and quit or they get bored because it is no longer fun. Clearly those of us with a life time of riding have not made it a job.

    Didn't mean to offend - BTW:
    No offense taken.

    Yes, I guess we all have goals, and we are all so very different.

    One of my goals is to have an activity with a minimum of goals.

    That doesn't mean that I don't like challenging that hill, or seeing myself getting better or faster. It just means that I am glad when that happens, but I don't want to make that my emphasis of bicycling - the one place where I get away from goals! But others' mileage obviously varies!.
    Last edited by DnvrFox; 10-07-07 at 08:30 PM.
    DnvrFox - still bicycling, swimming, walking and weight lifting at 74yo is participating a bit in BFN 50+.

  12. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by OBXBIKR View Post
    Seems to me, as an old, slow rider, that being a "good" rider involves a lot more than how far or how fast you can ride. On large group rides and cross-state tours, you'll see a lot of strong riders who can ride fast, or who take pride in riding "a century every day for a week" who are not good riders. Some of them present a danger to themselves and other riders and give cycling a bad name.
    Being a "good" rider means, among other things:
    Having and using good technical riding skills,
    Taking good care of yourself and your equipment,
    Being a safe, defensive rider who respects the rights of other riders and vehicles,
    Ride in such a way that engenders respect for cycling among non-cyclists

    If you want to become a "good" rider, take a LAB Road 1 course
    If you want to become a "really good" rider, take the course to become a league certified instructor...and become one.
    +1

    I've known fast cyclists who were not good cyclists, and good cyclists who were not fast cyclists.

  13. #38
    Erect member since 1953 cccorlew's Avatar
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    I think goals are important. We are either getting better or worse. It's hard to stay in one spot.
    I achieved my summer goals (Seattle-to-Portland, hit 144 fpounds or a few seconds) and now need new ones. I'm trying to come up with something I can do, something not out of reach.

    Good cyclists:
    • Hold their line, don't wobble and worry riders near them
    • Hold their speed in a group, don't brake or stand or stop peddling suddenly
    • Look comfortable on their bikes because they are
    • Don't panic when bad stuff happens
    • Know how to ride their ride and enjoy it
    • Know how to not screw up someone else's ride


    I'll bet when Lance was at a low point with cancr and could hardly ride, but still didi we'd all have reccognized him as a "good cyclist" even though he was short on strength.

    That said... in a nutshell, riders slower than me suck, riders faster than me are compulsive over trainers with no life. Riders just like me know teh golden path.
    WANTED: Not a darn thing. I've got it all. Life is good.
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  14. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by solveg View Post
    on any individual ride, how much is for fun, how much of it is to push onself?

    I'd say 1/4 of each ride is spent being pushed for me.
    I need a long warm up, sometimes as much as 20 miles, but usually 10 or 12.

    Then I'm in a good place for the next 20 miles or so -- warmed up but not tired -- and I go as hard as I can...which is usually about 18 MPH at 80% HR if it's flat and not too windy.

    Then I back off and just spin through the rest of the ride, be it a 60 miler or a 100 miler.

  15. #40
    SSP
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    Quote Originally Posted by DnvrFox View Post
    My viewpoint is that many or most of us come from some sort of work environment or other environment where we are pushed to our hardest to meet eomeone (or perhaps our own) goals. Incessantly. In my case, in teaching, there were tremendous daily pressures for achievement on the part of those I taught, for appropriate "classroom environment" for kiddos with serious and sometimes critical challenges in their own lives, in addition to the pressures we put on them at school, etc. In my personal world, I have been and am continuing in battles with huge systems of bureaucracy full of entropy and, at times, corruption, in a sometimes vain attempt to get services for individuals with disabilities. And etc., etc., etc.

    It seems to me that in at least one place in our lives we should be able to have refuge from this intensity and pressure, and that is in our recreation. Yet, I continuously see in these forums where folks are desirous of adding more and more and more pressure on themselves, even in their recreational pursuits.

    Why? I just don't understand it. We should all have a place of sanctity and peace, IMHO - at least I need that. I think reasonable goals of fitness and maintaining appropriate body weight are appropriate. Beyond that it just seems as if one is driven by something else that is beyond me.

    Different strokes for different folks, DF. I've always been kind of driven, and take a lot of joy and pleasure in planning my goals for each cycling season. Typically, those goals include rides that would be considered "extreme" and/or racing.

    When I was first starting out in road cycling (a little over 10 years ago), my goals were smaller - to do a metric century, then to do a century. After I'd done a century, I started doing more, and tackling harder and harder ones. The feeling of accomplishment from training for, and then achieving, these goals keeps me motivated.

    After a few years, I started doing week-long cycling tours. I've ridden the length of California, across Nevada, down the Oregon coast, and crossed the Continental Divide 10 times on 5 different tours in Colorado. Touring is a great way to meet other cyclists, learn a lot about riding techniques, and see some beautiful scenery.

    If I didn't have these goals, I'd probably find myself slacking off and losing interest...by setting difficult goals, I force myself to put in the time and effort in training.

    Lately, I've become more interested in competition, so now I've started entering road races, time trials, duathlons, and triathlons.

    In fact, I'm now on a week-long vacation in St. George, Utah, to compete in the Huntsman World Senior Games. I'll be competing in a 5K hill climb, a 40K time trial, a 60K road race, a 34K criterium, and a triathlon. I'll also find time to do some hiking in Zion National Park.

    Just riding along a MUP and "smelling the flowers" doesn't much appeal to me. For me, the "intensity and pressure" is part of the joy of the sport...it's a completely different intensity and pressure from the work-a-day world, and gives me much more in return.
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  16. #41
    Senior Member BikeArkansas's Avatar
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    SSP - That was quite a set of goals, and the fact that you achieved one after the other is tremendous. I agree with you that the pressure of reaching the bicycling goals are much different from meeting the goals at work.
    I started riding my bike to get healthy. Now I try to stay healthy so I can ride my bike.

  17. #42
    Around now and then DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SSP View Post
    Different strokes for different folks, DF.

    Just riding along a MUP and "smelling the flowers" doesn't much appeal to me. For me, the "intensity and pressure" is part of the joy of the sport...it's a completely different intensity and pressure from the work-a-day world, and gives me much more in return.
    OK, I accept your thoughts. Different strokes (of course)!

    Good luck with your goals.

    Have fun!
    DnvrFox - still bicycling, swimming, walking and weight lifting at 74yo is participating a bit in BFN 50+.

  18. #43
    Senior Member ?? Beverly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikeArkansas View Post
    Once again, being the OP, I am somewhat surprised by the subject that came out of this thread. I was looking for standards, I got a discussion on having goals. I actually find this odd. Most of the people that disdain goals actually have described their goals on this thread. Is there something that worries people about admitting their goals. Are they afraid of failing? Who knows? Ceratinly I do not know. I do know that I cannot imagine living without goals. I cannot imagine not being able to admit my goals, for whatever reason. I say that you would not go through the pain of pedaling up a hill if you did not have a goal.
    What type of standards are you looking for, BA? Most clubs have speed/distance/time standards for riders to use in order to select rides based on their abilities. I'm not sure what standards are used to determine the categories used in racing. Is this the type of info you were looking for?
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  19. #44
    Pat
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    Well I think you are confusing "good" rider with a rider in great condition and who can really ride fast. They are not necessarily the same thing. I have seen reasonably strong riders who could not change a flat. Amazing but true. I have seen people who were old and slow who were adept a nearly all things bicycle and could render aid and comfort to cyclists is distress. I think that knowing how to ride safely on the road, how to deal with mechanical problems, how to diagnose and treat physical problems are all parts of being a "good" cyclist. Riding fast really is not mandatory. Everyone gets old and slows down but that does not mean that they are no longer "good".

  20. #45
    Squirrel solveg's Avatar
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    I'm not even entirely sure if "fast" should even make the mandatory list. Strong should... or I guess it should be the common sense not to bike past your limits.

    Knowing how to change a flat should* probably make the mininimum requirements of a "good cyclist", but it's actually more important to carry a spare tube, which I just don't see on a lot of bikes.

    I know you guys are talking about century riding speed demons, but I actually have more respect for the commuters and toureres, and my stereotype is that they are the safest, most steady, most conditioned "good riders".

  21. #46
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Little Rock isn't that far from St Louis. Come on up sometime and I'll demonstrate what mediocre looks like.

  22. #47
    Elite Rider Hermes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikeArkansas View Post
    Once again, being the OP, I am somewhat surprised by the subject that came out of this thread. I was looking for standards, I got a discussion on having goals. I actually find this odd. Most of the people that disdain goals actually have described their goals on this thread. Is there something that worries people about admitting their goals. Are they afraid of failing? Who knows? Ceratinly I do not know. I do know that I cannot imagine living without goals. I cannot imagine not being able to admit my goals, for whatever reason. I say that you would not go through the pain of pedaling up a hill if you did not have a goal.
    You want a standard...here you go. http://www.westernwheelers.org/main/.../ride_info.htm

    These guys do a great job of establishing standards so that riders can select rides to their ability. Note the familiar rating system of A through F. I assume we can all agree that C is mediocre or average, but maybe not. Also, note the inversion of the rating (F is the best). So for you to be C or an average rider with this group, you would need to climb Old La Honda, the benchmark climb, of 3.9 miles with an average grade of 7.3% in approximately 30 to 40 minutes to go on a hilly ride.
    "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." Einstein

  23. #48
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikeArkansas View Post
    Actually, I have ridden 3 centuries this year. As it has already been suggested, I think probably the best thing is to time yourself and try to improve on that at whatever distance.
    A mediocre cyclist never has ridden a century and never will. I'm afraid you are going to have to drop your standards if you wish to achieve mediocrity.

    At our age, I think that smiles per miles is a great measure.

    I agree that if you want to set a yardstick, you have the best idea. If you want to race, then there are classes with fellows our age. I'll bet even Lance can be dropped by some people now that he's not been practicing as much for a couple of years.

  24. #49
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
    Little Rock isn't that far from St Louis. Come on up sometime and I'll demonstrate what mediocre looks like.
    I can show him and he doesn't even have to leave Little Rock.
    Last edited by Artkansas; 10-15-07 at 08:06 PM.

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    This is interesting because we had a discussion on this on our Sat. ride. I asked if there was a point being 57 years old that you could no longer improve on speed and climbing, etc. Another guy made a good point that as you improve you tend to ride with better riders and are still dragging up the rear so you feel like you have not improved. He said think about the riders you rode with 2 years ago. Today you most likely would drop them in a heartbeat. So improvement is slow in cycling and that improvement may not show up so easily.

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