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So just how good are you anyway?

Fifty Plus (50+) Share the victories, challenges, successes and special concerns of bicyclists 50 and older. Especially useful for those entering or reentering bicycling.
View Poll Results: In which quintile do you rate yourself as a 50+ cyclist?
Top 20%
19
19.79%
Second 20%
16
16.67%
Mid 20%
31
32.29%
Lower 20%
17
17.71%
Bottom 20%
13
13.54%
Voters: 96. You may not vote on this poll

So just how good are you anyway?

Old 05-24-10, 07:57 PM
  #26  
big john
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Speed is how many measure improvement of fitness, how one can compare one's level of fitness. I don't obsess over speed, but it is an indicator of some things.
On flat ground I can keep up with or drop a lot more people than I can in the hills, but I am over 200 pounds.
I can do a hilly century any weekend, but there are 60+ riders in my club and even 55+ women who can do the rides faster.
To answer the poll, it would be more fair if we could compare to others who do a similar amount of riding.
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Old 05-24-10, 08:13 PM
  #27  
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I consider it good when I can commute / ride 3+ days a week. I'd like to average 15 mph but I'm sure it's more like 13 mph this year. I'd also like to get back the Seagull century this year after missing the last two years. I voted lower 20%
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Old 05-24-10, 09:45 PM
  #28  
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pokey1 !! -- have to be in the bottom bracket --- i just like to
ride and aquire more distants as i ride more -- more like a tourist
taking in the sceanery
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Old 05-24-10, 09:59 PM
  #29  
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I feel really slow during the week, when I'm commuting. My bike is heavy, and (especially in the winter) only hard-core riders are out. They *all* pass me.

I feel faster in the summer -- especially on nice weekends. All kinds of newbs out on the road, people just tooling along, or people getting out on bikes for the first time in years. Then I feel not-so-slow. I still get passed, a lot, but there is usually someone slower around on a nice day. All it takes is 1.
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Old 05-25-10, 03:30 AM
  #30  
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I am not a hot weather person it seems that I cant get rid of body heat and it makes it a struggle above 90 to move my 270lbs.
Well Sat was no different I had done 17 miles of my first leg of my planned 59 miles. It was already above 80 when i started the second 17 mile segment to the next town I was already struggling I was carring a 20lb camelback. But it was downhill and into a 10mph headwind.

Somewhere on a flat section a fellow biker peddles along side and asks me if I am ok. I said yeah but I am not sure he believed me and I'm not sure i believed me. And with that the cycliest road away at what seemed lighting speed. The guy, who was riding a mountain bike, had a big gut and didn't look like your club rider.

The thing was he was enjoying his ride and I was struggling on mine. But the time i reached the next town i had finished off all but 8 oz of my water (from almost a gallon). It took me an hour to cool off. then I called home to get a ride.

Although the ride wasn't a milestone ride or practicullary enjoyable because of the heat. It was a ride and any day you can ride is good.
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Old 05-25-10, 03:39 AM
  #31  
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I was thinking this year I was slower than last until I looked at last years rides and found I was just the same.

It is hard to say where I am compared to others and to be honest I don't care. I ride as much as I can, 4-5 times a week sometimes 6. All seem to be around 30 miles except on weekends where I like to go beyond that and all seem to average between 17 and 18 mph. So there you go.

All my rides are solo as well.

edit: forgot to vote
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Old 05-25-10, 07:12 AM
  #32  
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Riders ride. Posers pose.
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Old 05-25-10, 07:56 AM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by cyclinfool View Post
I'm not going to down grade myself or any of my fellow 50+'s - HTFU, we are all in the top 20 percentile of the entire 50+ cycling population out there.
+1.
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Old 05-25-10, 08:07 AM
  #34  
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Who give a flying fig?
Enjoy the Ride!
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Old 05-25-10, 09:08 AM
  #35  
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125 miles per week at about 15 - 16 mph average, I selected 2nd 20%.
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Old 05-25-10, 09:20 AM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by leob1 View Post
Who give a flying fig?
Well, I certainly would if I had a spare one.

I'm glad no one took umbrage at the allegation that posters on this forum from 4 continents are dopers. We live in a very literal emoticon-riddled society and you never know who shows up at this place having left their sense of irony at home.

As I was leaving the house today my wife remarked that my son thought I was a bit down because he could flog me like a rented mule on the road on a singlespeed after riding it only two weeks.

Which is of course true.

I suppose I could get faster if I turn my rides into "training rides". I thought I was having a good year up to this point.

I have a 40 miler scheduled for tomorrow. I could try to ride it as quickly as possible but I'm going to turn it into a LSD ride as it will be solo.

I guess that's it.
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Old 05-25-10, 09:38 AM
  #37  
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I train with the 20, 30 and 40 yearlings on the road and track. I race with the 20, 30 and 40 y.o. on the velodrome in the B group and have a blast beating them once in a while. There's three of us 50+ in the B group and the kids don't cut us any slack.
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Old 05-25-10, 09:41 AM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by The Weak Link View Post
I have a 40 miler scheduled for tomorrow. I could try to ride it as quickly as possible but I'm going to turn it into a LSD ride as it will be solo.
Bear in mind, LSD means Long STEADY Distance, not Long Slow Distance. It doesn't matter--fast, slow or in between--it's steady that counts.
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Old 05-25-10, 09:51 AM
  #39  
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Interesting thread.

My experience is that speed is like sex. The ones who are talking about it aren't the ones who are getting it.

Personally, I don't much care how fast I am going vis-a-vis anyone else. Someone's always faster and someone is always slower, and in the big scheme of things, it doesn't mean squat. Cripes ... only one of my bikes even has a speedometer. Weather is such a huge variable, whether I'm faster one day to the next doesn't necessarily mean a thing ... I just ride to a level of effort that I'm happy with and leave it at that.

One thing I never want to do is take cycling so seriously that it starts to turn into work. I got enough work.
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Old 05-25-10, 09:55 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by Biker395 View Post
My experience is that speed is like sex. The ones who are talking about it aren't the ones who are getting it.

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Old 05-25-10, 09:56 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by tsl View Post
Bear in mind, LSD means Long STEADY Distance, not Long Slow Distance. It doesn't matter--fast, slow or in between--it's steady that counts.
Exactly my point. why should it matter?
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Old 05-25-10, 10:01 AM
  #42  
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Most of the people I ride with are in their 30s, me in the 50's. I hold my own. There are many 50 y.o. on trails, in fact the only ones I have seen are on walks with their women. I am playing with the idea of getting in a race just to see how I do.

My two favorite memories for the year include dropping a 30 something on a Stumpjumper on the Bur Sage Loop. I later showed him the shortcut back down. In a kind act he waited at the end of the trail to make sure I got out. I was the last one up there.

Another is coming back in with a Fat Tire posse and seeing some Roadies just leaving the Library parking lot. Spontaneously I hollered, Look Roadies, lets get em! They scurried away. It was a blast.
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Old 05-25-10, 10:03 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by The Weak Link View Post
Spring has sprung and we are rapidly approaching Summer. The daffodils and crocuses have bloomed and faded. The whirly birds have long flown. All the birds have returned from their Florida condos, and along with them, some hawks who hang around the back yard two or three times a year (I haven't figured out their schedule but I'm sure it will occur to me sooner or later) terrorizing the rabbits and squirrels, giving the backyard farmers some respite and depriving our cat of hours of entertainment.

And with the arrival and passing of the warm seasons come the Embellishers, posting times that rival the ToC TTers. I won't link it but someone on the Road Cycling forum was complaining just yesterday that he was chuffed to the gut because he was getting dropped by his group as they rocketed up 15% grades at 20 MPH.

Even on this humble forum we see a gradual disappearance of the "I enjoyed my ride today because I saw the deer in the valley below prance and frolic" only to be replaced by "I rode 130 miles and had to stop because the casing on my tires was melting from the speed".

I have to get this off my chest. I think some of you guys are making it up. The rest of you are doping.

Some of you are probably doing both.

In the spirit of the Two Most Esteemed Progressives In America (Barack Obama, who gives himself perhaps a bit immodestly a good solid B+, and Garrison Keillor, who admits that all the local kids are above average), I'm inviting you to rate yourself for active 50+er cyclists.

Do be honest. I'm doing this for posterity.
What is the scale? Is it distance, is it speed, is it photographs per mile? Personally I would rather see the deer, I would probably stop and take photos, I usually don't care how far or fast I go.... I do track distance and saddle time, but distance is more to know when things need to be replaced (tires, chains, brake pads), and saddle time is so that I know how much water and supplies I might need on a specific ride. Which I usually plan for double the saddle time.
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Old 05-25-10, 10:08 AM
  #44  
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Well, I just put myself in the bottom 20% because some days I can only ride about 5 miles (with a few short hills) before I have to turn back home, thanks to Chronic Fatigue. Very frustrating. Other days, I can ride 15-20 miles and it doesn't do me in, but I don't want to push it, or I'll be laid up too many days in a row afterward.
However, any day I can actually get on the bike and ride outdoors is an excellent day!
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Old 05-25-10, 10:11 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by tsl View Post
Bear in mind, LSD means Long STEADY Distance, not Long Slow Distance. It doesn't matter--fast, slow or in between--it's steady that counts.
I don't think that is quite so - I believe Arthur Lydaird coined the term for cyclist (runners use it too). I believe it is indeed "Long Slow Distance" however your point is correct, most trainers who advocate this training tend to focus more on the steady rather than the slow. For those of us with jobs and limited time we are better served with the long - steady at a faster pace than long - slow anyway just due to the amount of time we can devote. We may get a little more aerobic conditioning in as well.

TWL - I would stop focusing on keeping up with your son on the bike and focus on making the most of what you are capable of (and have time for). If you want real revenge - when your son starts "feeling his oats" remind him that all that tuition you either paid, are paying now or will pay is/was just a loan - you expect that money back.
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Old 05-25-10, 10:33 AM
  #46  
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I beleive that Lenny (cranky old dude) said it best in another thread

"To my way of thinking, it isn't how fast you do the ride but how much you enjoyed it that counts!"

With that being said, I agree that all of us here are in the top percentiles from 50+.

Also, maybe we should start a thread like the one in Road Cycling where you post your GarminConnect link to show actual results. It is kind of funny that not many post to this thread but most can maintain 20+ MPH.
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Old 05-25-10, 11:17 AM
  #47  
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Feeling fairly strong for a man my age. Getting in a lot more middle distance rides of 40-60 miles this year and last than I ever have and the speed is picking up a little. Was able to ride 55 miles at 16.5 mph on Sunday with just a couple of ten minute stops.
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Old 05-25-10, 11:33 AM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by tsl View Post
Bear in mind, LSD means Long STEADY Distance, not Long Slow Distance. It doesn't matter--fast, slow or in between--it's steady that counts.
Your correct that LSD means Long Steady Distance, however that means one of the keys is to set the proper pace, and that pace is more often then not, a slower pace, rather then a faster pace.
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Old 05-25-10, 11:58 AM
  #49  
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I always ride faster towards pie. The ride home is slower yet.
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Old 05-25-10, 12:27 PM
  #50  
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not sure where I rate. I put myself in the middle 20% as a pure guess. I rode Tour de Phoenix in April, 72 miles, and averaged 16+ mph for it. I believe I averaged 16 mph for Tour de Tucson last November. Last Sunday I rode 36 miles and averaged 17.2 (but it was windy.. gusting to 22mph).
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