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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 04-17-13, 07:57 AM   #1
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Strava?

Thinking about the concept but don't know what I need, what works best, cost, etc. Worth doing? Just looking for info from anyone who has actual experience. TIA
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Old 04-17-13, 08:31 AM   #2
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A garmin 500 (under $200) would be ideal. If you ride on hills it can substitute for a powermeter if you are interested in tracking your progress while training. You can see all your results on particular hill segments and compare your best performance with others if you are inclined. That might be motivating or discouraging depending on your point of view
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Old 04-17-13, 08:57 AM   #3
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Thanks. This helps.
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Old 04-17-13, 06:45 PM   #4
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It's part social network and part number cruncher. The free version is fine, the paid version gives you bells and whistles you don't really need but are cool. It helps to motivate me when I see everyone putting out big numbers.

There is a Plus 50 club, has around 70-80 members I think. It is "centered" in Louisville, KY. The code is 1952.

You'll need some GPS system to upload data. The phone based systems are very easy, Garmin units aren't much harder and are more accurate when it comes to elevation if that's important to you.
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Old 04-17-13, 07:21 PM   #5
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Free version works for me. Phone app is fine, but since I have a Garmin anyway, I like that better. You can be as invested in it as you want. I have created segments on many of the hills and areas I frequently ride. It is fun to keep up with how my times compare to each other and to what others who happen to ride them do. I was surprised to see a few weeks ago that I was within a couple of seconds of the fastest time on a tough hill on one of my frequent routes. It encouraged me to go all out next time and take over the KOM for that segment. I'm ahead of people I know could destroy me if they tried and they probably will, but it's a couple of miles from my house and I could afford to totally commit to it while they would normally be on a longer ride when they hit it. Usually I see my best time as something like 135th out of 200 on a popular segment.
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Old 04-17-13, 07:24 PM   #6
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I just downloaded the app for my iPhone. Works great. One warning though, if you have a competitive nature, get ready.
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Old 04-17-13, 07:37 PM   #7
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The free version is great, and your smart phone is perfect for recording rides of 2 to 3 hours. I.e. almost no barriers to entry.

I paid for the upgrade. The extras are not worth the $$, but it's nice to give back to an organization that outs out a great product for free.

I use it to track hikes, runs, and rides, and the way it posts rides to Facebook is pretty cool too.

Try it...
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Old 04-17-13, 10:20 PM   #8
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It keeps me honest about my effort. If I keep my watts up, I know I am pushing to stay in shape. When the watts are down, I am dogging it.
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Old 04-17-13, 11:55 PM   #9
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I like Strava a lot but must disagree with those who say the premium membership isn't worth it. It's a matter of what you want I suppose. I consider the power estimates nearly useless but other features are fun and useful. I like getting my suffer score and following other local riders has given me some great ideas for routes I had not thought of before.

The iPhone app isn't as complete as the full web version. I use a Garmin to generate the data.
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Old 04-18-13, 12:53 AM   #10
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Now that all the serious answers have been posted.... I agree the phone apps work fine. Garmin works a bit better but if you aren't looking for cadence a Garmin 200 works just as well for most people and you can get one for $130.00 from Nashbar or most LBS.

Now for the less serious part. We used to have a saying here, if you don't have pictures it didn't happen. Now when someone says they have passed the local roadie club on their hybrid with panniers going up hill in the wind while drinking a soda we can say, without Strava is didn't happen. Plus if you get Strava Dudelsack will force you to join his club.
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Old 04-18-13, 05:57 PM   #11
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Love it for motivation. It puts my competitive drive into overdrive. I worked my butt off getting to 6th place on a steep 1.4mi only to get knocked down to 11th at the end of the season. Our KOM is a pro MTB guy that works a LBS. We dont have mountains, just an awful lot of hills here. Great app!
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Old 04-19-13, 04:26 AM   #12
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Seems like it is an app that provides a nexus (?) between ride data and social media. Sounds like it could be motivational if I'm willing to spend the money and figure out how to make it all work. This has been great info. Thanks.

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Old 04-19-13, 09:59 AM   #13
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I like the mapping, the route profile and the distances. I like the fact that it tells me how much I have ridden in the day, the week, the month, the year.

I dislike the competitive stuff, probably because I'm so slow. Coming back from a ride to be told you are 207th in a list of 226 riders is sort of depressing.

Maybe I should be using another app.
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Old 04-19-13, 10:13 AM   #14
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I like the mapping, the route profile and the distances. I like the fact that it tells me how much I have ridden in the day, the week, the month, the year.

I dislike the competitive stuff, probably because I'm so slow. Coming back from a ride to be told you are 207th in a list of 226 riders is sort of depressing.

Maybe I should be using another app.
You get used to it.
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Old 04-19-13, 11:12 AM   #15
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You get used to it.
That I have. I load into Strava and go to the last page. Woo Hoo!
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Old 04-19-13, 11:39 AM   #16
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What a great tool Strava is for keeping me from telling fibs about my cycling
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Old 04-19-13, 01:37 PM   #17
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There have been a couple of updates to the app recently, and one of them is that you are supposed to be able to see where you are on a map as you ride. I have not figured out how to do this. Anyone?
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Old 04-19-13, 02:14 PM   #18
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There have been a couple of updates to the app recently, and one of them is that you are supposed to be able to see where you are on a map as you ride. I have not figured out how to do this. Anyone?
I haven't done that with Strava yet.

I've been playing with Cyclemeter this season, and uploading the GPX files to MapMyHike. I put Strava on my iPhone a couple of months back, and just the other day uploaded the same GPX files to my Strava account, and we'll see which I like better. I think that the calorie estimates on Strava are much more accurate than those on CycleMeter - I mean, no way I burned 1000 calories on a 17-mile ride, ya know?? Cyclemeter has a real-time display so if you don't mind killing your iPhone battery by keeping the display on all the time it shows your current speed, current grade, altitude etc, and shows your position real-time on a map so it could theoretically replace your computer. However, I'm forced to have a lock on my phone and it's a PITA (to say nothing of dangerous) to unlock it while riding, so I just carry it in the mount and use a conventional wireless bike computer for real-time info (current speed is really all I'm inclined to check anyway). I think Strava will be nice in that I don't have to export the GPX file, email it to myself, save it to my computer then upload it to MapMyHike.

I kinda think that there are two distinctly different functions that I'm looking for - historical data, showing how much I've ridden and how my performance is improving, and real-time stuff, that shows me what I'm doing right now. Strava looks to be good for the historical stuff, and a conventional cycling computer seems to be more practical for real-time performance display. A lot of apps and devices will connect wirelessly to HRMs and cadence sensors too, but that's much more information than I'm interested in collecting.
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Old 04-19-13, 02:57 PM   #19
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Me so dum.
I answered a question from a ferrner who was planning a US visit, about a place
I used to live and he kept mentioning "strava" to which I replied "I dont know where strava is . . . "

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Old 04-19-13, 05:36 PM   #20
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We live in a small area so it is great fun for me seeing my chums out there doing their thing. Which is primarily kicking my arse. I recommend using it.
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Old 04-19-13, 05:58 PM   #21
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We live in a small area so it is great fun for me seeing my chums out there doing their thing. Which is primarily kicking my arse. I recommend using it.
And I was thinking that it would be kinda fun if I could see my performance on some segment to go from 297th out of 305 to 296th out of 305!!
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Old 04-20-13, 11:27 PM   #22
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I have been using Strava on a Virgin Mobile Optimus Elite Android phone for about five weeks. It started out fine for the first half dozen rides but it has gone down hill from there. In the last dozen rides the Strava app has locked up three times (losing all data) and had syncing problems three times (losing all data). It seems to be getting worse as my rides are getting longer. It is no fun to be out riding 3-4+ hours and then find out you lost everything collected for the ride. It may work better on an Apple iPhone or a different Android phone but I am getting ready to uninstall it as I find it very unstable. They were responsive to my Support inquiries but offered no help in resolving my issues. I highly question the Calories used and Power numbers it calculates and I wish it kept track of associated weather for the ride (no temperature or wind data). Its a good idea but it needs work...........................
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Old 04-21-13, 02:39 PM   #23
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I have been using Strava on a Virgin Mobile Optimus Elite Android phone for about five weeks. It started out fine for the first half dozen rides but it has gone down hill from there. In the last dozen rides the Strava app has locked up three times (losing all data) and had syncing problems three times (losing all data). It seems to be getting worse as my rides are getting longer. It is no fun to be out riding 3-4+ hours and then find out you lost everything collected for the ride. It may work better on an Apple iPhone or a different Android phone but I am getting ready to uninstall it as I find it very unstable. They were responsive to my Support inquiries but offered no help in resolving my issues. I highly question the Calories used and Power numbers it calculates and I wish it kept track of associated weather for the ride (no temperature or wind data). Its a good idea but it needs work...........................
The system works best with a Garmin because of the constant GPS coverage. I have found the phone based Strave is very reception sensitive.
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Old 04-21-13, 03:02 PM   #24
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i upload my garmin data to strava. Like Ibohunt, i also load the data into strava and then go to the last page to see how I did. Actually for my ride Saturday, I looked at some segments before and saw what looked like a reasonable time to try for (a little more than halfway through the pages. It gave me a goal to work towards and I beat the time I wanted to on both segments (That put me at page 35 instead of page 36 out of 73)
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Old 04-23-13, 03:59 PM   #25
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I like the mapping, the route profile and the distances. I like the fact that it tells me how much I have ridden in the day, the week, the month, the year.

I dislike the competitive stuff, probably because I'm so slow. Coming back from a ride to be told you are 207th in a list of 226 riders is sort of depressing.

Maybe I should be using another app.
Get the premium version so you can sort on your age
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