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Enthusiast but not hard core,, Others?

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Enthusiast but not hard core,, Others?

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Old 03-14-19, 06:05 AM
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sd5782
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Enthusiast but not hard core,, Others?

Of course, all here are certainly enthusiasts or they would not be here on the forum. I see lots of posts here and on the C&V forum of guys who are obviously pretty racy and quite engaged. Certainly they are/were athletic at any age. I however never had the lungs to be too athletic, nor the physique to go that route. I have had a bike or two all my life though. Now that I am older, I have a few more; a hybrid, a 3-speed, and an 80s "fast" bike.

I just wondered how many lurkers here are like me and don't have riding clothes, don't wear a helmet, ride weekly vs daily, etc. We still enjoy, but usually have a casual solitary ride. I enjoy, being out in nature and I enjoy fine mechanical equipment. I figure I will get flamed for the no helmet comment, but that is how I roll. I will say that I have mirrors on all my bikes, and feel that is the most important safety feature around, and I wear a helmet on my motorcycles.
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Old 03-14-19, 06:12 AM
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I only own one bicycle, so I can't be very hard core. When I got back into riding, I planned to wear street clothes as I didn't want to appear as a poseur. But then I determined bike shorts were more comfortable. And I like the back pockets on jerseys. So I look like a serious road rider, except that I'm pretty darn slow. But enjoying the ride is all that really matters.
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Old 03-14-19, 07:11 AM
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I've been training to be hard core/ race ready, but my performance is mediocre /slowpoke
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Old 03-14-19, 07:21 AM
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We have a whole club in St Louis for that type of rider. When the weather's fit we have group rides almost every single day. stlrc.org
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Old 03-14-19, 07:21 AM
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Originally Posted by sd5782 View Post
Of course, all here are certainly enthusiasts or they would not be here on the forum. I see lots of posts here and on the C&V forum of guys who are obviously pretty racy and quite engaged. Certainly they are/were athletic at any age. I however never had the lungs to be too athletic, nor the physique to go that route. I have had a bike or two all my life though. Now that I am older, I have a few more; a hybrid, a 3-speed, and an 80s "fast" bike.

I just wondered how many lurkers here are like me and don't have riding clothes, don't wear a helmet, ride weekly vs daily, etc. We still enjoy, but usually have a casual solitary ride. I enjoy, being out in nature and I enjoy fine mechanical equipment. I figure I will get flamed for the no helmet comment, but that is how I roll. I will say that I have mirrors on all my bikes, and feel that is the most important safety feature around, and I wear a helmet on my motorcycles.

The dirty little secret here, is that some of the nicest bikes you see here are almost never ridden. It's a shame, but until the day our govt confiscates all fancy vintage bikes and redistributes them equally among needy riders, it's a situation that's here to stay. I kinda secretly wish someone would steal all of mine and I could start all over again, but if I wanted that situation bad enough, I'm sure i could make it happen.
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Old 03-14-19, 07:25 AM
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Funny

Originally Posted by Tom L View Post
I've been training to be hard core/ race ready, but my performance is mediocre /slowpoke
Since I got a racier bike last fall, I plan to ride a bit harder this year. Never had great lung power, so I don't really want to take my enjoyment away by trying at 62 years old to be something that I am not. Guess I can see where it will take me.
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Old 03-14-19, 07:34 AM
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Originally Posted by sd5782 View Post
Since I got a racier bike last fall, I plan to ride a bit harder this year. Never had great lung power, so I don't really want to take my enjoyment away by trying at 62 years old to be something that I am not. Guess I can see where it will take me.
You can do anything you set your mind to. There is a cycling past 50 Facebook group and I just saw a guy who was 70 post his last ride which 28 miles (thereabouts) at 19.9 mph average speed.
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Old 03-14-19, 10:12 AM
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I had 6 hours of memory loss from wiping out on my bike when I must have hit some lingering ice in 2005 during a February warm spell. I cracked my helmet. I don't want to think what the outcome would have been without my helmet. The biggest issue I had after that wipeout was my bruised ribs and the creepiness of having lost 6 hours of memory. Freaked out my husband as well since he had to come and get me from the forest preserve where I was riding since I must have known it wasn't safe to drive. I had loaded my bike back into the car but then handed my cellphone to some riders who were hanging out nearby so they could give them directions on where I was at. My last recorded memory was getting ready to ride. The next memory was being in the x-ray department at the hospital.
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Old 03-14-19, 10:57 AM
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I never quite understood the close connection in cycling between just plain cycling for fun and what you call "hardcore." That connection doesn't really exist in many other outdoor activities. for example I am a downhill, telemark, and cross-country skier, but I see little evidence of hardcore skiers. Most of the people I see and talk to in the mtns. are not training for anything, They are just enjoying themselves. Similarly, I love to hike, but I never encounter a hiker who is trying to get to the destination as fast as possible. Most hikers simply enjoy being in the woods and mountains. Yet in cycling, I see all kinds of cyclists who look like they are dressed for the Tour de France or who are racing around at top speed trying to improve something or other. Naturally, people can do what they like how they like, but I never quite got the idea that I should b e going as fast as I can or that I should be working on increasing speed or fitness. There is nothing wrong with racing or improving fitness or in training, but I see quite a push for doing these things right here on the forum with plenty of talk about saving time or improving some element in cycling equipment that will increase speed or reduce wind resistance or rolling resistance. The bicycle industry is in large responsible for this emphasis on hardcore because it is a bit money maker, but I do wonder why so many cyclists engage in the hardcore approach. Again, there is nothing wrong with such an approach, but it does seem odd that it is popular.
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Old 03-14-19, 11:39 AM
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Labels don't help and it is all about your perspective.

I wear a helmet, have riding clothes, ride 4 or 5 days each week and am somewhat focused on athletic performance. I've raced gravel, ride fixed-gear on the road and am starting to bikepack.

To me, hardcore is the cat racer with a power meter who goes to the Tuesday night crits and travels weekly to compete in the state wide championship series. Hardcore is the bikepacker who rides across the continent or the people who do multi-day ultra endurance races where they sleep in a bivy.

From where I sit, I'm the enthusiast and the person described by the OP - doesn't have riding clothes, doesn't wear a helmet and rides only weekly - is a casual cyclist.

Hardcore, Enthusiast. Recreational. Casual. Again, these are all labels and really don't mean anything. There will always be people more or less into any given activity. Call me hardcore if you want. At 55 years old I do what makes me happy.


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Old 03-14-19, 01:54 PM
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Serious? Hard Core? It's all relative. If you tell someone that doesn't cycle that you rode 50 miles, they're likely to think you're hard core. If you tell them you rode a hundred, they'll think you're hard core and crazy.

When I started riding again a few years ago, I didn't have a speed or distance goal of any kind. Was just looking to do something to improve my conditioning that was enjoyable. I still don't have any serious goals. I haven't raced or even done a group ride. Certainly not hard core but I am serious about enjoying myself.
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Old 03-14-19, 02:21 PM
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I find constant patter about dropping or being dropped by strangers and obsessive concern about increasing speed and distance, on lists that are not set aside for competitive activities to be boring. I guess that means I am not serious or hardcore; thank goodness.
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Old 03-14-19, 05:29 PM
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Interesting to me is that there seems to be the notion of value judgments here. As if being "hardcore" is better than being casual or casual is better than being hardcore. Both notions are nonsense.

I qualify as hardcore on so many levels. I have all the equipment. I ride oodles of miles, including commuting. I do crazy long rides, and have even raced RAW and RAAM. Most of my friends are cyclists (great folks), and I advocate for cycling infrastructures and education.

Objectively, that's hardcore I guess. But it doesn't feel like it. I'm just doing what makes sense at the time.

I ride lots because I live where the traffic SUX and I have a great bike path. I have all the equipment because I've been at it for 30 years or more. I do crazy long rides, cuz they're fun and for me, they are not difficult (probably all the commuting). Ditto the RAW and RAAM ... I was just lucky to get the opportunity.

Does that make my cycling any more important, desirable or relevant to anyone else? Nah. Does it make it any worse? Hell no. We're all doing what we're most comfortable with for whatever reason. It's all good.
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Old 03-14-19, 05:36 PM
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"Hard core" is simply someone who rides a little further or faster than you do. Much like a "Computer Genius" is someone who knows a couple of tricks that you don't. Calling someone hard core says as much about the person making the statement as it does about the person being described.

And obviously, if you race for a living, the term takes on a whole new meaning beyond what us mere mortals know from our own experience.
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Old 03-14-19, 05:43 PM
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Are all those drivers who spend 10 or more hours a week stuck in traffic "hardcore motorists?"
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Old 03-14-19, 06:04 PM
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So, what exactly is "Hard Core"?

I suppose to some extent I'm a "Hard Core" commuter. But, cross just about all boundaries, other than actually racing which I haven't done since I was a Midget.

I kind of wish that I had done racing as an intermediate and junior, but other things got in the way, and I didn't have the necessary drive.

I've thought about doing some TT races, but need to convince myself that I'm fast enough to not embarrass myself too much.

And, yes, the "old bike" is pretty worn. Even the newer bikes have seen a fair amount of wear.
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Old 03-14-19, 06:15 PM
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I don't consider myself "hard-core," but I'm probably faster than the average 63-year-old. A few guys in my club are pushing 80 and they can hang with me most of the time. This group has members at all speed levels, and it's all good.
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Old 03-14-19, 06:31 PM
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Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post
Labels don't help and it is all about your perspective.

I wear a helmet, have riding clothes, ride 4 or 5 days each week and am somewhat focused on athletic performance. I've raced gravel, ride fixed-gear on the road and am starting to bikepack.

To me, hardcore is the cat racer with a power meter who goes to the Tuesday night crits and travels weekly to compete in the state wide championship series. Hardcore is the bikepacker who rides across the continent or the people who do multi-day ultra endurance races where they sleep in a bivy.

From where I sit, I'm the enthusiast and the person described by the OP - doesn't have riding clothes, doesn't wear a helmet and rides only weekly - is a casual cyclist.

Hardcore, Enthusiast. Recreational. Casual. Again, these are all labels and really don't mean anything. There will always be people more or less into any given activity. Call me hardcore if you want. At 55 years old I do what makes me happy.


-Tim-
That's me, but truthfully I don't feel that hardcore compared to a lot of the folks I ride with. Between family and house and job, squeezing in time to ride is always a compromise. Right now I've got just enough fitness not to totally embarrass myself, but it's all for fun. Racing is not for everyone, but I enjoy it and I have made a lot of really good friends racing my bike.
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Old 03-14-19, 06:41 PM
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Not hard core here, my glory days are behind me. I wear clothes that keep me comfortable. I still love knocking out a 35-40 mile day ride. I hope and pray for many more.
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Old 03-14-19, 07:59 PM
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Ouch, I didn't mean to step on any toes, and certainly not to label anyone. Actually after seeing some responses, I may more accurately be labeled as a casual rider who is also an enthusiast. I guess I kind of considered an enthusiast as one who perhaps has several bikes for various cycling styles; one that enjoys working on them and perhaps going to swap meets, one who appreciates fine equipment etc.

I guess hard core was the wrong term and I should have been referring to more enthusiastic riding styles and riders that can use their bikes for many more hours and miles per week. I certainly applaud and envy this and wish I had the time and opportunity. I guess I was wanting to see how many casual riders were out there that enjoyed the hobby as I questioned in the OP.
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Old 03-14-19, 08:28 PM
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I ride most of my miles solo, so I get to pretend I'm all kinds of riders at any given moment. Years ago I got over the idea that I could be the fastest rider, or own the most state-of-the-arts equipment, or dress the part of a world class champion. That doesn't stop me from giving a little more kick when someone is overtaking me in the mirror, or browsing the slipperiest clothing on the rack, or hitting the brakes to circle back around to get a longer look at a deer peering back at me just off the trail. It is about the ride. The journey. The time away from the noise of the world. Hard core cyclist? Still at it after 66 years. Maybe.
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Old 03-14-19, 09:04 PM
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Originally Posted by iowa mark View Post
I ride most of my miles solo, so I get to pretend I'm all kinds of riders at any given moment.
Same here. It's always nice to begin a ride feeling like Pee Wee Herman, and to end it feeling like Hinault / Lemond / Indurain, etc. The mood-improving effects of a good ride are really amazing. That's mainly what I use the sport for, everything else is secondary.
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Old 03-14-19, 09:12 PM
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I wear the basic bike garb but boring no fancy jerseys the same high vis yellow so I can be seen easily. I ride solo to get away from people which isn’t hard because no one I know rides I try to ride atleast 100 miles a week but usually more. I enjoy riding trails like The Katy. GAP/C&O etc. I have no training plan I just ride various terrains and distance and intensity goes by how I am feeling. Hardcore sometimes I want to think so but really just an enthusiast that gets a natural high from riding bikes. I have about 8 bikes 6 which are functional and plenty of parts so I like wrenching bicycles that saves money and the closest bike shop is 50 miles away.
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Old 03-14-19, 09:22 PM
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I ride my two e-bikes regularly for fun and exercise.
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Old 03-14-19, 10:40 PM
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Enthusiast but not hard core,, Others?
Originally Posted by sd5782 View Post
Of course, all here are certainly enthusiasts or they would not be here on the forum. I see lots of posts here and on the C&V forum of guys who are obviously pretty racy and quite engaged

I just wondered how many lurkers here are like me and don't have riding clothes, don't wear a helmet, ride weekly vs daily, etc. We still enjoy, but usually have a casual solitary ride. I enjoy, being out in nature and I enjoy fine mechanical equipment…
This thread seem to be a re-hash of previous discussions, like:Bike Riding vs Cycling,” e.g,
Originally Posted by Digital Gee View Post
You guys crack me up. I've been away from the forum for a while, and I come back to find a thread with 88 comments on it discussing whether it's "cycling" or "biking." Only in the 50+ group!
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
Since you've been away, you may not realize that biking = cycling ≠ bike riding.
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