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Old 09-12-09, 12:33 PM   #1
Artmo
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For those who think they are still 20 years old

Interesting article in the WSJ
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...660445730.html
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Old 09-12-09, 12:49 PM   #2
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I'm 56, and I ride harder, longer, and faster than I ever have, and continue to improve every year. Slow down? Maybe for top level professional athletes, but how many on this forum are? I read somewhere that the typical cyclist can continue to improve until age 63-64. Hammer on!
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Old 09-12-09, 01:00 PM   #3
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"After 50, Avid Athletes Find That to Stay Healthy, They Must Let Go of the Need to Win"

No problem for me. As Muddy Waters sang, "you can't lose what you never had".
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Old 09-12-09, 01:03 PM   #4
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There is a lot of truth in that article. I've never been one of the fast guys in any age group, but I used to suffer to the max to keep up with them. I've let that go for the most part. It's not because I've lost that competitive drive but it was causing a lot of stress in my life and I was getting sick more. I still ride hard at times but I pick my spots and I monitor how often though I'd have to move to the flatlands if I wasn't allowed to get my HR over 120.
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Old 09-12-09, 01:43 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by BluesDawg View Post
"After 50, Avid Athletes Find That to Stay Healthy, They Must Let Go of the Need to Win"

No problem for me. As Muddy Waters sang, "you can't lose what you never had".
That is my situation, as well. I was not racing material when I was 20, although I was and still am a pretty decent hill climber. I have lost much of my long distance endurance, but I think that is simply because I have not had time for century length rides in many years, and I could probably rebuild that with training.
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Old 09-12-09, 01:45 PM   #6
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I'm 56, and I ride harder, longer, and faster than I ever have, and continue to improve every year. Slow down? Maybe for top level professional athletes, but how many on this forum are? I read somewhere that the typical cyclist can continue to improve until age 63-64. Hammer on!
A mere youngster I'm still improving at 69, but I don't try to compete with 30-year-olds!
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Old 09-12-09, 02:17 PM   #7
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One of the members of our group will be 80 this year. She rides, hikes, walks, swims, and does yoga --- at her own pace. She tends to hang at the back of the pack during group rides, but hey, she's out there doing something that a very small % of the population can do. She can ride to the beach and back the next day, almost 100 miles round-trip. She told me this morning that she is stronger than she was in about 1980 when she "was in great shape".

I agree with the article's claims that over-exertion breaks down the body and lowers the immune system, damages joints (over-use syndrome), and causes mental burn-out -- even depression.

All things in moderation.
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Old 09-12-09, 02:29 PM   #8
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I agree with the article's claims that over-exertion breaks down the body and lowers the immune system, damages joints (over-use syndrome), and causes mental burn-out -- even depression.

QUOTE]

Agreed, At any age, not just over 50.
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Old 09-12-09, 02:31 PM   #9
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I'm 56, and I ride harder, longer, and faster than I ever have, and continue to improve every year. Slow down? Maybe for top level professional athletes, but how many on this forum are? I read somewhere that the typical cyclist can continue to improve until age 63-64. Hammer on!
67 here and still improving.
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Old 09-12-09, 02:36 PM   #10
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I reached a point this summer where it felt like every ride was a training ride; every ride had some sort of goal. That attitude darn near made me an EX-cyclist.

Lately I'm back to riding for the fun of it, though trying to put in longer rides rather than faster. Goo thing about cycling is the variety of rides and it's easy on the joints.
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Old 09-12-09, 03:57 PM   #11
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Good article Artmo! Thanks...
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Old 09-12-09, 04:14 PM   #12
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I reached a point this summer where it felt like every ride was a training ride; every ride had some sort of goal. That attitude darn near made me an EX-cyclist....
I'm beginning to show the very early signs of burn-out; at that stage, it's good to examine what's most important. Working full time with 2 hours/day spent commuting, and trying to fit in a ride after work while everyone else is in a hurry to get home and the sun is low in their eyes is not my idea of a fun bike ride. The frenzy of trying to fit it in with an early bedtime so that I can keep my legs fit for long weekend rides.... and getting not much done around the house or yard on the weekends after the group rides.... is causing us to take a closer look at how much time I realistically can devote weekly to riding while I'm still working ---- and trying to balance that with adequate riding time to maintain and improve fitness on a realistic level and still participate in some of the group rides.

I've experienced burn-out in other areas, twice, and it's a looooooooong road back that takes many months, perhaps years.
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Old 09-12-09, 04:49 PM   #13
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Be 70 in 2 months. I am slowing down - but I have a lot of other stuff going on in my life - some pretty stressful.

My bicycling, swimming, walking, weight lifting and stretching is to relieve stress and to maintain fitness.

I have to be careful not to let my desire to maintain fitness become an additional stress!
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Old 09-16-09, 05:01 AM   #14
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I'm only 57 and want to ride until I can't swing my leg over the top tube. I just go with the flow and that varies from ride to ride. If it 'feels right' I will hammer after I am warmed up. As long as you keep riding you are improving. My goal is to avoid burnout by keeping it fun. Riding is an escape.
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Old 09-16-09, 05:24 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BluesDawg View Post
"After 50, Avid Athletes Find That to Stay Healthy, They Must Let Go of the Need to Win"

No problem for me. As Muddy Waters sang, "you can't lose what you never had".
Oh, man now I got to clean the coffee off my keyboard. Don't know why this hit the funny bone so hard this morning, but it did. This describes my cycling life to a fault. As I like to say, "I was never very fast and always will be." My competitive juices flow more toward my professional work. I do not want to detract from or denigrate the experience of those 50+ who like to compete on the bike; it's simply not me. I tend to think that any time I'm able to go for a ride, I've already won. Going faster or longer for me isn't about anything other than the experience of speed and more time in the saddle. That said, there is some good advice in the article for those who train beyond their body's ability to accommodate the stress (good advice at any age, I might add).
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Old 09-16-09, 08:06 AM   #16
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It takes me longer to recover from a ride and I now like to take a nap afterwards but not right away. It depends. Sometimes its just 20 minutes. Sometimes longer. It does wonders. Wake up feeling refreshed.

I also make sure the immune system doesn't break down by getting proper nutrition. Lots of anti oxidants in the form of my own smoothie concoction. That's one thing the energy supplement business is not doing. They do the carbohydrates, the protein, the electrolytes, but not the anti oxidants. I figure the older riders really need the anti oxidants more than the younger riders.
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Old 09-16-09, 08:30 AM   #17
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Thanks for the article. It's very timely for me as I've been pondering this issue for the last several days. I'm 62 and always ride alone, unless it is a public ride suuch as a Century. I attempted to do an easy 50 miler last weekend, but ended up being the 7th rider to cross the line out of about 75. Obviously my pace didn't match my intentions. I'll also add that it took me the better part of 2 days to recover. that sucks!
Regardless, I am always driving myself to do better, go faster, etc. Unfortunately, the results don't match the ambition. For some reason, I keep comparing myself to all riders regardless of there age. If I see someone ahead, I have to pass. If someone passes me, I go into manic depression.
I really need to adjust my attitude. Somehow I need better alignment of my goals and my capabilities or I will never be satisfied.
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Old 09-16-09, 08:36 AM   #18
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Here is a different viewpoint.
There are many articles and advisers to tell you not to exercise too much. It amuses me.
Over 50% of Americans are overweight. Many are obese. Many can hardly walk.
My wife and I just returned from a 3 day bike tour. We stayed in a motel near a casino in Wisconsin. The amount of grossly obese people in the Breakfast room was depressing to see.
OTOH the bike trails were nearly empty. Less then 10 bikers in 50 miles on one day and less on the other days.
Americans need to exercise more, much more, not less. They need no encouragement to take it easy. They are very good in finding their own reasons.
I agree that there are some very few people overdoing it. They are not the problem.
Why is it that all the overweight people need constant stroking that they are doing the right thing? They are not.
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Old 09-16-09, 11:04 AM   #19
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You seem to have missed the point of the article, Will. It was directed at long time athletes who tend to overdo it as they age, not at obese people who don't exercise.

One of the things I like about randonneuring is that it stresses being self sufficient while doing non-competitive riding at your own pace. You get to chat with friends at the start of a ride, after the ride, and during control stops when they may show up either before or after you at a particular control, and there isn't much pressure to blow yourself completely up trying to stay with a group or hold a certain speed. Indeed, when it comes to long distance riding, picking a pace you can maintain to successfully complete that many miles is of major importance.

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Old 09-16-09, 11:17 AM   #20
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You seem to have missed the point of the article, Will. It was directed at long time athletes who tend to overdo it as they age, not at obese people who don't exercise.
One of the things I like about randonneuring is that it stresses being self sufficient while doing non-competitive riding at your own pace. You get to chat with friends at the start of a ride, after the ride, and during control stops when they may show up either before of after you at a particular control, and there isn't much pressure to blow yourself completely up trying to stay with a group. Indeed, when it comes to long distance riding, picking a pace you can maintain to successfully complete that many miles is of major importance.
Respectfully , I disagree.
Perhaps my brain works differently.
I look at that article in search of an issue. The very few athletes who overdo it as they age may be a problem. Could be. Certainly does not apply to this crowd in the 50+ as far as I can see.
I suspect that the OP was not addressing that but a not so subtle hint that some of us are pushing harder then the OP thinks reasonable.
My reply is meant to say that we have a much bigger problem with lack of exercise in the general population then the few excesses.
I would like to see the fireworks if there is an article describing declining cycling activity due to obesity.
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Old 09-16-09, 11:25 AM   #21
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I reached a point this summer where it felt like every ride had some sort of goal.
That's why there's pie.
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Old 09-16-09, 12:05 PM   #22
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Here is a different viewpoint.
There are many articles and advisers to tell you not to exercise too much. It amuses me.
Over 50% of Americans are overweight. Many are obese. Many can hardly walk.
My wife and I just returned from a 3 day bike tour. We stayed in a motel near a casino in Wisconsin. The amount of grossly obese people in the Breakfast room was depressing to see.
OTOH the bike trails were nearly empty. Less then 10 bikers in 50 miles on one day and less on the other days.
Americans need to exercise more, much more, not less. They need no encouragement to take it easy. They are very good in finding their own reasons.
I agree that there are some very few people overdoing it. They are not the problem.
Why is it that all the overweight people need constant stroking that they are doing the right thing? They are not.
Here in the U.S., 20-30 lbs. overweight is the new standard.
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Old 09-16-09, 12:49 PM   #23
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I know a few friends that risk over-use, but 99% of the people I know are not sufficiently active.

I have been lucky enough to begin a solid pattern or exercise, and I'm not going to cut back without a fight . Like most of us, I don't have the time or personality that would lead to overuse. I would hate to think about cutting back or slowing down, maybe when I'm seventy.

I have no plans to "act my age", I have never understood the concept.

Michael
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Old 09-16-09, 01:07 PM   #24
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Certainly does not apply to this crowd in the 50+ as far as I can see.
No, this group is laid back enough that the few people who come here with the potential for this problem either end up leaving for a more competitive oriented forum or stay and preach to the rest of us about how this article isn't the real problem.
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Old 09-16-09, 01:58 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by will dehne View Post
Here is a different viewpoint.
There are many articles and advisers to tell you not to exercise too much. It amuses me.
Over 50% of Americans are overweight. Many are obese. Many can hardly walk.
My wife and I just returned from a 3 day bike tour. We stayed in a motel near a casino in Wisconsin. The amount of grossly obese people in the Breakfast room was depressing to see.
OTOH the bike trails were nearly empty. Less then 10 bikers in 50 miles on one day and less on the other days.
Americans need to exercise more, much more, not less. They need no encouragement to take it easy. They are very good in finding their own reasons.
I agree that there are some very few people overdoing it. They are not the problem.
Why is it that all the overweight people need constant stroking that they are doing the right thing? They are not.
Two questions for you to consider, the first following a short introduction:

1. Men in three Matsigenka villages in southeastern Peru were shown six drawings of women that differed only in body weight and waist size. The men chose a drawing for each of these categories: healthiest, most attractive, and best potential spouse. The overwhelming winner in every category was the drawing of the heaviest woman with the thickest waist. Why might the Matsigenka men perceive heaviness as attractive?

2. What is the difference between overweight and being obese? Can a person be overweight and be healthy?

The strength of your response has me wondering if there isn't some body image prejudice taking place. I might be completely off base, and if so, my apologies.
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