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  1. #1
    wreckrider
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    are 50+ guys too old for road bikes?

    Hi guys, i'm new to the forum and have enjoyed reading it since i discovered it a few days ago. i recently bought a moto cafe sprint (28 tires) hybrid believing i was just too old (57 yrs-male) to go for the road bike. since then i've been working up to about 100 miles per week averaging about 13.8 mph on mostly flat roads around chicago. I like the moto alot but it was advertised as a flat bar road bike that would be more comfortable than a road bike but faster than a hybrid. after reading the hybrid forum as well i'm having my doubts. my trusty 12 yr old jamis steel hybrid with 38 tires and a rack (my original rosinante) upon whom i just put a cheap computer seems to be just as fast as the much cooler looking moto. also altho i love riding the moto i'm experiencing wrist, upper arm and back pain. so i'm wondering: was i right to believe that i'm too old to have gotten a faster road bike with drop bars (which i can't seem to be able to use when i have tried them)? and is the moto really just a hybrid that can never go faster than well a hybrid? (will switching to 23 tires help??)

  2. #2
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    Shouda hada got a road bike with drop bars.
    A bunch of 50+ (I am 68 y/o) have done well riding drop bars to help are hurting damaged back conditions.
    I started riding at 65 y/o.
    Takes a while to totally get in a condition to not to hurt so much.

    I ride with 700 X 28's
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  3. #3
    Randomhead
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    lots of 50+ guys are still racing, so there is nothing to say that you are too old for a road bike. You might need to improve your core strength to be happy about it though.

  4. #4
    rebmeM roineS JanMM's Avatar
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    Chances are that a 'comfort' road bike with somewhat higher drop bar position and relaxed geometry and carbon stays, etc. would be more comfortable for you. The flat bars limit your position possibilities.

    If you want real comfort, but with the potential for speed, there's always recumbent bikes

    RANS V3 (steel), RANS V-Rex, RANS Screamer

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    Age 63 here. I just bought a Specialized Roubaix Elite road bike upon my return to cycling this month. I started the month riding my Trek FX7300 hybrid. I really like the Roubiax with drop bars. Even with bar ends, the hybrid isn't near as comfortable as the drop bar Roubaix. I had a couple of other drop bar bikes back 15- 20 years ago, but they weren't near as comfortable as this Roubaix, which has the bar height up even with the seat height. One thing I did to my hybrid to relieve wrist strain was to add a set of clip-on aero bars. Looks a little goofy, but works great.

    Jim

  6. #6
    Senior Member Allegheny Jet's Avatar
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    I'm 57 and these are a couple of my road bikes. I don't seem to have much trouble riding them and never thought about being too old.
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    oldschool areodynamic brick

  7. #7
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    are 50+ guys too old for road bikes?


    No.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  8. #8
    Freddin' it
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    Go to a bike shop and test ride various categories of bikes, and various types of road bikes (relaxed vs aggressive geometries). Only you and your body will know what you like best. Our opinions don't matter.

    Still, I agree with 10 Wheels. My 60-yr-old back won't tolerate an upright bike. Leaning forward takes the weight off my spine. And as JimT said, my mountain bike with bar-ends isn't nearly as comfortable as my Roubaix with drop bars, though probably just as fast, with road tires.

    Test ride, fall in love, buy. You're only too old if you don't try.

  9. #9
    Banned.
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    are 50+ guys too old for road bikes?

    This is a joke, right?

  10. #10
    Spin Meister icyclist's Avatar
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    Oh, to be 57 again. This seems like a trollish post to me.

    Pics of you and your bike, rosinante25, or I won't believe either of your are real.
    This post is a natural product. Slight variations in spelling and grammar enhance its individual character and beauty and are in no way to be considered flaws or defects.

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  11. #11
    Animated Member ahsposo's Avatar
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    Me? No.

    If you have to ask...

    It's like this. Some old guys aren't comfortable having a passionate relationship with a beautiful young thing that leaves them breathless after every encounter. I live for it. Since I made some foolish promises to my wife at the marriage altar I have to pursue this need in another fashion.
    Quote Originally Posted by toddles View Post
    If I gotta look up words, it's not worth my time.

  12. #12
    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    I'm a Chicagoan who restarted his cycling with a Hybrid two years ago. Within 9 months, I moved up to a road bike. Now I have four road bikes including two vintage bikes, a Cyclocross bike and a titanium road bike.

    To be sure that I would be comfortable on a road bike, I was professionally fitted at Get-a-Grip Cycles in Chicago. This has allowed me to ride as much as I want without problems. I rode 5000 miles last year.

    I would visit: http://getagripcycles.com/index.php?...&id=5&Itemid=4

  13. #13
    Animated Member ahsposo's Avatar
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    I re-read the OP and I believe the pain is from the upright position hybrids are designed to be ridden in. My hybrid gives me numb hands and butt after just a few miles whereas I go for hours on my well fitting road bike with no discomfort (except my lungs and quads and that's not really discomfort thats the good kind of pain) and due to the more aero position naturally go faster. Hybrids in my experience are not as precisely fitted as a good road bike. Plus some of the current crop has front suspension which scrubs some of the forward power.
    Quote Originally Posted by toddles View Post
    If I gotta look up words, it's not worth my time.

  14. #14
    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ahsposo View Post
    Me? No.

    If you have to ask...

    It's like this. Some old guys aren't comfortable having a passionate relationship with a beautiful young thing that leaves them breathless after every encounter. I live for it. Since I made some foolish promises to my wife at the marriage altar I have to pursue this need in another fashion.


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  15. #15
    Senior Member rumrunn6's Avatar
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    test ride one and see
    cycling is like baseball ~ it doesn't take much to make it interesting

  16. #16
    Senior Member TromboneAl's Avatar
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    You can think of drop handlebars as flat bars with optional-use drops stuck on the end. I have inline brake levers on my tops, and I am in the drops about 5% of the time. Also, I have my handlebars much higher than most, to avoid neck pain.

    My Book: Drive, Ride, Repeat: The Mostly-True Account of a Cross-Country Car and Bicycle Adventure

  17. #17
    Senior Member rumrunn6's Avatar
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    +1 for raising the bar
    cycling is like baseball ~ it doesn't take much to make it interesting

  18. #18
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
    You can think of drop handlebars as flat bars with optional-use drops stuck on the end. I have inline brake levers on my tops, and I am in the drops about 5% of the time. Also, I have my handlebars much higher than most, to avoid neck pain.

    I had that same bike back in the early 90's. Great bike..............wish I still had it..............I'd do to it just what you've done. I can see now why my Roubaix is more comfortable than it was back then, since it had a low stem.

    Jim

    PS: Where on the coast is that picture taken? I live on the North Oregon Coast.

  19. #19
    Senior Member donheff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
    You can think of drop handlebars as flat bars with optional-use drops stuck on the end. I have inline brake levers on my tops, and I am in the drops about 5% of the time. Also, I have my handlebars much higher than most, to avoid neck pain.
    Interesting Al. My wife and I bought cyclocross bikes with interupter brakes on top. At the time we were used to flat bars and thought the top brakes would come in handy. My wife still relies on them but I prefer the regular brakes. Yet she rides in the drops more than I do -- go figure.
    Every man is, or hopes to be, an Idler. -- Samuel Johnson

  20. #20
    gone ride'n cyclinfool's Avatar
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    Must 50+ guys be confined to a nursing home?
    "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.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Billy Bones's Avatar
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    Interesting inquiry.

    As it turns out, many of us 50+ types have the 'ready cash' to afford top-of-the-line gear. So, NO! We're at just the RIGHT age for really agressive road bikes. Ask rather, can a 50+ guy. . .or gal. . .drive a '63 Shelby Cobra? Same rules apply.

    Anyway, who's gonna' tell us what [or what NOT] to drive. . .or ride. . .or eat. . .or **c*? We'll do what the hell we like, won't we?
    AUDENTIS FORTUNA IUUAT
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  22. #22
    ES&D t4mv's Avatar
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    I do notice the saddle - hbar drops on the 50+ bikes are noticeably less than, say, a 35- bike.

  23. #23
    Senior Member BengeBoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rosinante25 View Post
    Hi guys, i'm new to the forum and have enjoyed reading it since i discovered it a few days ago. i recently bought a moto cafe sprint (28 tires) hybrid believing i was just too old (57 yrs-male) to go for the road bike. since then i've been working up to about 100 miles per week averaging about 13.8 mph on mostly flat roads around chicago. I like the moto alot but it was advertised as a flat bar road bike that would be more comfortable than a road bike but faster than a hybrid. after reading the hybrid forum as well i'm having my doubts. my trusty 12 yr old jamis steel hybrid with 38 tires and a rack (my original rosinante) upon whom i just put a cheap computer seems to be just as fast as the much cooler looking moto. also altho i love riding the moto i'm experiencing wrist, upper arm and back pain. so i'm wondering: was i right to believe that i'm too old to have gotten a faster road bike with drop bars (which i can't seem to be able to use when i have tried them)? and is the moto really just a hybrid that can never go faster than well a hybrid? (will switching to 23 tires help??)
    Hi all, we have a good record on this sub-forum of responding to new member's questions, and there are bunch buried in this OP. Before we react to the headline of this thread (are 50+ guys too old for road bikes), we might look at all the questions buried in the original post and try to answer them.

    My quick effort:

    1. Lots of folks like flat bar road bikes or hybrids; lots don't. There is a mistaken impression that flat bar bikes are more "comfortable" -- but for many people (like me) a well-fitting drop bar bike is *much* more comfortable. Among other things, drop bars give you more hand positions, increasing your comfort.

    2. If you can find a bike shop you trust, you can get some help on the fit of your current bike -- could be that a new stem, saddle position, or even converting to drop bar handlebars could help you. Also, as someone noted above, raising the bars can help.

    3. Don't worry too much about average speed; for a bunch of reasons it's only a crude indicator of fitness.

    4. Switching to 23c tires almost certainly won't give you a measurable improvement in average speed. Some skinny tires are faster; some are slower. They might be less comfortable than what you're on today, making the problems you're complaining about worse. To be significantly faster, the 23c tires would have to be lighter than what you're using now, which might mean more flats.

    I would suggest you spend a bunch of time researching and working on fit of your current bike -- lots of subtle things to take into consideration.

  24. #24
    Senior Member trackhub's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allegheny Jet View Post
    I'm 57 and these are a couple of my road bikes. I don't seem to have much trouble riding them and never thought about being too old.
    The answer to the OP's question is No!

    But... That Raleigh!!! More pics of that please!!! Now you're cooking with gas!
    "The People will believe what the Media tells them they believe". George Orwell.

  25. #25
    Century bound Phil85207's Avatar
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    Last year at the USA Ironman Triathlon in Lake Placid I met a man of 73 years. He had finished the event and in respectful time too. I talked to him the day after the event and believe me he looked great. Age is just a number. How old would you be if you didn't know how old you were? We put to much emphasis on age, and not enough on
    keeping fit.
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