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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.

First Loser

Old 03-10-24, 08:22 PM
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First Loser

I competed in a local "Senior Games" time trial today, finishing second in my age group (first loser) in both the 5k and 10k distances. One of the nice things about the event was seeing pretty good performances by riders older than I am, reinforcing my (obviously false) belief that I can beat Father Time and ride forever. The oldest rider, in the 85-89 age group, rode the 5k in 10:46 and the 10k in 20:49. That comes out to more than 17mph. I was impressed. I usually ride solo, and when I've gone riding with others have always been the oldest rider by at least 20 years, so it's nice to see strong cycling by us 50+ people. For that reason, I always like to read posts here on BF about the accomplishments of riders older than I am. Keep posting, old timers, to help us maintain the illusion that Father Time can't knock us out of the saddle.

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Old 03-10-24, 09:43 PM
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If we want to beat the curve in results, we have to beat the curve in behavior. That and have good genes.
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Old 03-11-24, 05:07 AM
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Originally Posted by downtube42
If we want to beat the curve in results, we have to beat the curve in behavior. That and have good genes.
IIRC I read that genes only become the dominant longevity factor over behaviours above the age of around 85.
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Old 03-11-24, 08:14 AM
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I have noticed a few competitors (both male & female) in other sports, Masters age groups, that outperform competitors in much younger age groups.
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Old 03-11-24, 08:27 AM
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at 59 I continually place in the last three places of every CX race I do. Part of the reason is probably because I'm a Cat 4, and some of them are Cat 1s and 2s, but still, it's amazing how fast those guys in the late 60s are.
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Old 03-11-24, 09:00 AM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski
IIRC I read that genes only become the dominant longevity factor over behaviours above the age of around 85.
Hmmm. I'm not quite sure about that though I'm not the expert in this area: my wife is, though, and she doesn't think about mortality or longevity in quite such a cut-and-dried way. I think people like to believe that behavior matters more than "endowment" (whether genetic endowment or capital endowment) because they want to believe they have agency over their lives, with the side effect that if you live a long time it's because of what you did, and if someone dies young(er) it's because of what they didn't. As an historical aside, there was a hypothesis in perhaps the 1940's and 1950's that there were "exogenous" and "endogenous" causes of death and one could classify mortality this way. We don't use this distinction anymore because it turned out to be rather unhelpful. The main causes of death vary across countries, but especially between high-income and low-income countries, which suggests that endowment, broadly defined, plays a pretty big role.
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Old 03-11-24, 09:35 AM
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Originally Posted by RChung
Hmmm. I'm not quite sure about that though I'm not the expert in this area: my wife is, though, and she doesn't think about mortality or longevity in quite such a cut-and-dried way. I think people like to believe that behavior matters more than "endowment" (whether genetic endowment or capital endowment) because they want to believe they have agency over their lives, with the side effect that if you live a long time it's because of what you did, and if someone dies young(er) it's because of what they didn't. As an historical aside, there was a hypothesis in perhaps the 1940's and 1950's that there were "exogenous" and "endogenous" causes of death and one could classify mortality this way. We don't use this distinction anymore because it turned out to be rather unhelpful. The main causes of death vary across countries, but especially between high-income and low-income countries, which suggests that endowment, broadly defined, plays a pretty big role.
I will see if I can remember where I read that, but it was a credible source. I think it was referring to longevity of the "survivors" beyond 85 being largely determined by genetics.
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Old 03-11-24, 09:50 AM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski
I will see if I can remember where I read that, but it was a credible source. I think it was referring to longevity of the "survivors" beyond 85 being largely determined by genetics.
Ah, that makes more sense, and I think we'd agree that this is the current "operative hypothesis": conditional on attaining some advanced age (I'm not sure that 85 is exactly the number), then further survival beyond that may have a reasonable amount to do with what we in the biz call "frailty." (As an aside, depending on the audience, we often avoid the term "genetic" because of the association with eugenics. Further, there's a lot of active research discussion going on about data quality for these older survivors. This is the kind of in the weeds research which explains why the stuff I do in my day job is arcane within a field that is obscure).
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Old 03-11-24, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by RChung
Further, there's a lot of active research discussion going on about data quality for these older survivors. This is the kind of in the weeds research which explains why the stuff I do in my day job is arcane within a field that is obscure).
I can't remember the name of the scientist who said, regarding an asian population with extremely long lifespans, that they weren't good at surviving to old age so much as they were really bad at counting.

Stephen Jay Gould (of course)

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Old 03-11-24, 11:42 AM
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Originally Posted by asgelle
I can't remember the name of the scientist who said, regarding an asian population with extremely long lifespans, that they weren't good at surviving to old age so much as they were really bad at counting.

Stephen Jay Gould (of course)
Some Asian countries count age differently than most Western countries. Korea used to follow Asian customs but recently switched to follow Western customs. That's the kind of detail that makes people in my field excited. Our amusement threshold is low.
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Old 03-11-24, 11:50 AM
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One article I read on blue zones said the really old folks could have overstated their ages decades ago to qualify for pensions, and they were born before actual records were made to say otherwise.

So at least a grain of salt is to be taken with the idea that you can duplicate blue zone results with lifestyle changes.

Of course, sitting around a stressful job and eating crap will shorten your life, no real argument there.

And to the thread, there are some fast masters out there.
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Old 03-11-24, 01:13 PM
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Originally Posted by McFlyRides

Of course, sitting around a stressful job and eating crap will shorten your life, no real argument there.

.
That was my point really. Genetics might greatly influence whether we can potentially live to 80, 90 or 100+ but lifestyle certainly has a huge impact on our health long before we reach that point.
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Old 03-11-24, 01:38 PM
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Originally Posted by McFlyRides
And to the thread, there are some fast masters out there.
True statement.
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Old 03-12-24, 09:43 PM
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Originally Posted by McFlyRides
One article I read on blue zones said the really old folks could have overstated their ages decades ago to qualify for pensions, and they were born before actual records were made to say otherwise.

So at least a grain of salt is to be taken with the idea that you can duplicate blue zone results with lifestyle changes.

Of course, sitting around a stressful job and eating crap will shorten your life, no real argument there.

And to the thread, there are some fast masters out there.
When I look at where I fall in some Strava segments for my bracket, it is shocking how many fast geezers there are out there - this is especially true in a major metro area. Where I live in the countryside I am a quasi big fish in a small pond - but get my come-uppence in spades in Seattle.
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Old 03-12-24, 10:37 PM
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Originally Posted by rsbob
When I look at where I fall in some Strava segments for my bracket, it is shocking how many fast geezers there are out there - this is especially true in a major metro area. Where I live in the countryside I am a quasi big fish in a small pond - but get my come-uppence in spades in Seattle.
Truth!

Since I aged up to the 65 group a few months ago, Iíve been trying to pick off some geezer KOMs. Not that easy in the Bay Area. Iíve had to dig pretty hard to grab the occasional uphill segment, here and there.
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Old 03-14-24, 07:29 PM
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I haven't heard "first loser" in a lot of years. There's nothing wrong with a podium finish. It seems my favorite place is 4th - just missing the podium. Now THAT'S "first loser."
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Old 03-14-24, 07:40 PM
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Originally Posted by BlazingPedals
I haven't heard "first loser" in a lot of years. There's nothing wrong with a podium finish. It seems my favorite place is 4th - just missing the podium. Now THAT'S "first loser."
Yes, that was just my attempt at some self-depreciating humor. I was happy just to be there and mingle with some other elderly cyclists. My silver metals were just icing on the cake.
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Old 04-13-24, 08:06 PM
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Non-humble brag:

With parents currently aged 91 soon to be 92 and 93, and my active lifestyle combined with a pretty decent diet, will have me posting here until people are more sick of me than they are already. The physical thing might be real actively easy, but what I am seeing out of them mentally is pretty scary. Maybe I can get my brain chipped then.
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