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Old Fast Guys?

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Old 09-05-18, 08:32 PM
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TimothyH
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Old Fast Guys?

Lots of threads on being grumpy, aches and pains, getting old...

But are you old and fast?

Have any stories about whoopin' the younger guy's rear ends on a group ride?

Have you gotten to the top of the hill first, or at least not last?

Taken your helmet off and grey or no hair surprised the younger guns?

I'd love to hear about it.


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Old 09-05-18, 09:51 PM
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Nah, I haven't been able to beat the younger guys to the top of the hill since I was 60. 63 was where the drop-off really became noticeable to me and to others. I had to stop leading the fast group from the rear out of embarrassment. I used to be able to run the length of the paceline at will. I did some randonneuring, which emphasizes the geezer strength, endurance. I had some good finish times. I somehow have the facility to be able to cruise at 20+ even after 15 hours in the saddle. I think it's nutrition and hydration, not talent. Let's see. I've been doing a 10,000' event ride again these past few years. At the rest stops youngers ask, "How do you do it?" I reply, "By never stopping doing it." There are 800 entries, bib numbers assigned 1-up by age. This year I was #10 , finished #265 . Mostly, I just don't stop much or for very long. I lost about 100 places on the last pass climb, gained back about 50 of them on the last 35 miles of upwind, downhill rollers. I never climbed well, but I'm aero. Gotta emphasize your strengths. And train. I hope to do better next year. I had health issues this year and couldn't train enough. Hopefully, that's in the past, at last for this week.
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Old 09-05-18, 10:55 PM
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I can make a good showing on some of the flatter, shortish Strava segments...

Then along will come someone that is really fast... and it is almost embarrassing.
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Old 09-05-18, 10:58 PM
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61 and I keep up with many thirty-somethings. There's airways someone faster than me, including some 63 and 64 year old friends. But I'm comfortable doing solo rides at 18 to 19 mph in areas with some flats and lots of rollers, and 19 to 21 on flat routes.

I know I'd be faster if I had more time to train. I haven't made 1,300 miles yet this year!!
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Old 09-05-18, 11:08 PM
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I have good days.... I have slower days too. Every ride... is as much fun today as riding a bike was when I was a child. Earlier this summer an attractive young lady came up to me and told me (being out cycling on the MUPS) I was a real inspiration to her and her friend. I said... you mean because I am old? She said...Yes!
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Old 09-05-18, 11:20 PM
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caloso
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I’m pretty pleased with this one: https://www.strava.com/segments/12983790 It’s the county line sprint on the Saturday A ride. Although I was 49 at the time, so maybe it doesn’t count here.
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Old 09-06-18, 02:21 AM
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I set a PB on the Innsbruck sprint yesterday. Shaved 1:58 off my previous PB.


I've also done my fastest 1.7 km run ... well ... my fastest run since I began running again last December.


I've also got a few QOMs, although two were taken from me just recently.
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Old 09-06-18, 02:28 AM
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Nope, not really. I'm fast on some Strava segments with a few in the top ten. But those are mostly cherry picking, a combination of having an unusually strong day and a tailwind. Longest sustained effort that cracked a top ten was a six mile segment.

But my average on that popular 20-40 mile route is 16 mph. There's a local guy my age (60) or a bit older who averages 20 mph on the same route, consistently. He doesn't seem concerned about Strava top tens or KOMs. He's just steady and consistent.

I have to save my energy for specific segments, put in a maximum effort sprint, then loaf cycle to recover. So, semi-fast but no stamina.

But we'll see next year after I recover from injuries and illness. Considering the thyroid thing I'm pretty satisfied with my improvements this year.
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Old 09-06-18, 04:45 AM
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I had a 40-something fellow fall in with me on the high end of a 100k last Sat...we rode side by side for 20 minutes or more. At one point he asked my age (61) commenting I had kept in pretty good shape. LOL...shortly after that I told him to ride on as I needed to settle my heart rate. I haven't reviewed my data log, but was pretty proud of that. Cheers!
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Old 09-06-18, 04:46 AM
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Well, I do easily qualify for this category in age, but don’t consider myself fast. But, a couple of weeks ago my wife and I are riding our 20-mile exercise trail course. We’re riding single file on the paved trail and she mentions that a group ride has entered the trail behind us. So, I thanked her for the info and kept waiting to get passed. Finally, after a mile or so I hear one of them announce “on your left” so we let them pass. It was a group from a local bike shop doing their weekly ride. We just kept riding and they really never pulled away. Maybe because we were behind them and they were reducing our wind resistance, but they never pulled away. After about 2-3 miles, they left the path and turned onto a road to follow their route and we continued on the path. It wasn’t what would be considered a very long experience in a group, nor were they a fast group, but rather surprising from my perspective. Actually felt pretty good. We were probably rolling about 16-18 mph, which we’re able to do for 3-5 mile segments at times.
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Old 09-06-18, 09:05 AM
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Back when I was 55 or so, I was doing after-work rides on my commuter/tourer with a pannier or two. The first time I jumped the line on a hill, overtook the leader, and then started ringing my bell, it shattered the poor guy. Pretty soon the rest of the group started lining up behind me, and they'd then pass me as I slowed near the top.

Nowadays, I have to be content to pass younger riders on longer event rides on shallower inclines. I can still surprise some people on 4% grades, younger or older than me.
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Old 09-06-18, 09:31 AM
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I'm not what I would call fast anymore, but there are plenty of old, fast guys and gals out there. Not long ago I met man in his mid-70s who could still TT 40km in 62 minutes and was annoyed he could no longer go under the hour. And last month I was part of a group of 8 who rode from Calais to Nice - just over 1400km - in two weeks. That group ranged in age from 40 to 80, yes 80, so at 63 I felt positively middle-aged. The longest day offered a chance to climb Mont Ventoux at the start of the ride, and four of us took it. We took the route from Malaucene, which is 21.5km at an average 7%. The middle section is quite tough, 4kms that average 10%. For a long time I was on my own but about 2km from the summit I hear someone behind me and there is Ted, aged 72 (73 next month) spinning his granny gear and exchanging a cheery word as he inched past me. He got to the top about 200m in front of me and there was absolutely nothing I could do about it.

Impressive. And it just goes to show that if you keep doing it, you can keep doing it - for a surprisingly long time, to a surprisingly high standard.
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Old 09-06-18, 09:38 AM
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Not fast, I'm happy when I'm in the top half of the popular Strava segments in my regular rides, and shoot for top quarter if I'm going for a PR on a specific segment. The truly fast old guys are the ones who were fast young guys and never stopped.
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Old 09-06-18, 10:36 AM
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Originally Posted by pdlamb View Post
The first time I jumped the line on a hill, overtook the leader, and then started ringing my bell, it shattered the poor guy.
This is what I'm talking about. Ringing the bell was a nice touch.


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Old 09-06-18, 11:11 AM
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One of the main reasons I quit racing (25 years ago, in my late 30's) was that I got tired of having my butt handed to me on a regular basis by guys 10+ years older than me. But I'm still riding, just not as hard-core.

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Old 09-06-18, 11:24 AM
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I actually started racing when I was 38, and boy is that true. One of the things about racing in NorCal is that you can get your butt handed to you by a teenager in the morning, and then by his dad later that afternoon.
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Old 09-06-18, 01:30 PM
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I don't nor have I ever raced, and I know I'm not fast but it always makes me feel good when I do an organized ride and I see plenty of riders that are way younger than I am finishing much later. I did a century this past weekend that also had a metric option. At about 30 miles the two routes spit and rejoined at about my 80 mile mark. I saw some younger riders that were doing the metric coming up to the intersection where the two routes met. I also passed a bunch of people between that point and the end. Most of them were younger than I am or at least appeared to be. I was already really happy with my day, but that just made it better. Still not gonna be racing anyone though.
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Old 09-06-18, 01:38 PM
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Originally Posted by caloso View Post
I actually started racing when I was 38, and boy is that true. One of the things about racing in NorCal is that you can get your butt handed to you by a teenager in the morning, and then by his dad later that afternoon.
I didn't start racing until I was in my 50s. I was mainly interested in checking out whether I was really as fit as I thought I was. It was interesting, and humbling, in equal parts. I could easily hang in with the cat 3/4 guys in the open races but when it came to the 55-59 age group road races, I was toast. Some seriously quick old men who've ridden more than 300km per week, every week, for the last 30 years.

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Old 09-06-18, 01:45 PM
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Exactly. For me the M123 race is always harder than the E3 race.
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Old 09-06-18, 01:52 PM
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Originally Posted by caloso View Post
Exactly. For me the M123 race is always harder than the E3 race.
Which is a nice message for the old folks here, don't you think? It is possible to retain a very high level of aerobic fitness into old age. And all it takes is a bit of commitment.
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Old 09-06-18, 04:57 PM
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Originally Posted by tourisme View Post
I didn't start racing until I was in my 50s. I was mainly interested in checking out whether I was really as fit as I thought I was. It was interesting, and humbling, in equal parts. I could easily hang in with the cat 3/4 guys in the open races but when it came to the 55-59 age group road races, I was toast. Some seriously quick old men who've ridden more than 300km per week, every week, for the last 30 years.
...and a lot of 'em are former pros and elite amateurs. I used to get schooled regularly by a guy whose biggest regret in life was coming in second to John Howard at Masters' Nationals.

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Old 09-06-18, 05:04 PM
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Originally Posted by tourisme View Post
Which is a nice message for the old folks here, don't you think? It is possible to retain a very high level of aerobic fitness into old age. And all it takes is a bit of commitment.
I think this summarizes what I've been feeling lately but have been unable to formulate into words or express.

Here is what got me thinking about this...

I rode alongside a guy just out of college the other day. Really nice guy but a bit caught up with how he cycles, does yoga, has a six pack, etc. I decided to have some good natured fun and upped the pace slowly, little by little, intentionally half-wheeling the guy until he struggled to talk. Then he got behind me and eventually I pulled away on a grade. I slowed, letting him catch up and he asked how long I've been cycling. I just said, "1977" sort of deadpan. Eventually we parted but the episode was funny to me. Actually, it made my day.

So yeah, I have been really committed this year. Lost weight and have 5000 miles so far. Age is relentless, but it is nice to know that one can still be fit even with grey hair.


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Old 09-06-18, 07:18 PM
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I have my moments. But overall, at 63 I'm getting a bit slower every year in spite of my efforts to the contrary. Someone commented a few days ago how often they see me near the top of the strava rankings. I would probably have more KOMs around here if I took advantage of riding in a pack, like everyone else seems to do.
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Old 09-06-18, 08:07 PM
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Cool, a boasting thread

I think I'm somewhat fast for a 55 years old. When commuting, I can count on one hand the number of times I'm being passed compared to the number of time I'm passing others, and that after many months (I think I've been passed only three times this year so far). I'm first for my group age in many Strava segments. During the two 100 km and the 100 miles ride I did this Summer, I was never passed but passed many. During a 70 km charity ride this Spring, I rode in a group with colleagues my age and younger than me by decades. I kept up (averaged 33 km/h once the herd thinned down) with my younger colleagues while those my age group had to dial it down half way.
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Old 09-06-18, 08:45 PM
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Being an ex-racer boy, I am always interested in going fast, however this year I simply don't have it. Since slowing down I find riding more interesting. I see things I miss when going as fast as I can. Honestly, I enjoy riding more now than I did when I could hang with the A group.
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