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Nomadicone 07-13-11 08:41 PM

Sabbaticals from ridding are hard to get over
Iím new to the forum and glad to see they have a place for those of us who are seniors. Iíve taken a long break from riding (much too long) and Iím struggling but making small improvements every day. Having added a bit of ballast in the last few years and now being well over 50 is not helping. Iím finding so much has changed technology wise since I last rode. Just the road bike frames alone look so much different in dimensions. Gotta lose some of this weight but Iím looking forward to getting back in shape and learning from this forum. Maybe even be able to contribute a bit.

jdon 07-13-11 08:55 PM

Welcome Nomadicone. There is often good info here and often daydreaming about the next pie ride. Enjoy and contribute and take what you like and discard the rest. Pretty civil bunch here though.

stapfam 07-13-11 11:57 PM

Just take it steady and don't push too hard too soon. If a short ride is all you can currently manage- then jusat do a short ride---Then repeat when the butt- hands and back stop aching. And look on the ballast as part of life from now on. Some of it will go but unless you start doing 100 milers up mountains- then you are stuck with some of it.

And on the bikes- No idea how out of date or fashion your bike is but that is the least of the problems you will have. Just ask some here that are still riding 20 year old 30lbs bikes that still do everything they want to do.

rothenfield1 07-14-11 12:11 AM

It wasnít that many years ago that I felt I needed to start moving my body because I was obviously over weight at my age. I donít remember what the motivation was to get the ship off the dock, but I started by riding the bike I had up and down the .6 mile road in front of our house. 1 lap, 2 laps, 3 lapsÖI started gaining confidence in my legs and lungs and started to venture out into some of the hilly side roads. With the pleasure of the rides and the commitment to keep doing it, I began to feel the extra pounds melt away and my desire to keep riding increase.:)

TealLA 07-14-11 12:20 AM

Original Poster:
I'm 34 and just started riding again after 10+ years off the bike. I recently started riding mountain bikes with a group here in Los Angeles. In this group there is a 70 year old rider who is pretty much neck and neck with me as far as ability/endurance goes and then there is a 77 year old who is way stronger and in much better shape than me. Just to give you an idea of myself I am 5'10" 180 pounds and in fair shape, I could stand to lose some weight for sure but not totally out of shape either. My point is this. Those two guys give us all hope that we may "ripen" with old age as well.

bruce19 07-14-11 08:56 AM

OP: this is exactly the the situation I found my self in at age 58 in 2004. At that point I had been off the bike for 8 yrs. after having ridden Centuries and multiple 100 mi. days and what I used to call my "20 mi. TT" in an hour for my 50th birthday. I got back on the bike thanks to a female co-worker who wanted to try cycling. She needed advice. Knowledge of cycling I had. Fitness....not so much. I had accumulated 8 yrs. of "rust" and 15 lbs. Ugh! But, I got back on the bike and started riding with this woman on group rides. I was usually the slowest rider and she was kind enough to hang back with me. It was painful watching "lesser" riders disappear as I struggled to stay in contact. Now I'm 65. It has not been easy but I've managed to lose 10 lbs. and gotten my fitness back to the point where I have increased my average on my 15 mi. TT from 14 mph to 17.5 mph. I'm also a solid B group rider with my club. Easily the oldest B rider. For my 60th birthday that same woman bought me a Masi Gran Criterium w/ Dura Ace. I bought her a Fuji Team Sport for her birthday the same year. Happily she is my best friend and the person I share a home and life with. And, of course, we still ride together.

CraigB 07-14-11 01:10 PM

Welcome back to the game. I took an extended break myself, from about ages 40 to 55, after having been a pretty active cyclist in my 20s and 30s. During that time I let my weight get way out of control. I started back riding, a little at a time, about 5 years ago, and have loved every minute of it, especially this season, when I started out lighter (under 200) and in way better cycling shape (thanks to a winter of twice-weekly spin classes) than I've ever been before. As much as I thought I loved riding, it's waaaay better now.

Nomadicone 07-14-11 02:27 PM

Thanks for all the responses and encouragement. It sounds like several have been where I am now. After about two weeks of riding I'm starting to enjoy it again and up to 10 miles and around 15.5 mph. That's a far cry from the centries I used to ride at higher averages but it's a start and I intend to stick with it. I need to drop about 30-40 lbs and the only way I was able to do that in the past was with the 50+ mile rides.

As an interesting side note, I have had two flats in two weeks. One was due to decayed rim strips and the other I wasn't paying attention and hit a baseball size rock in the road. I almost went down and now have a new tire on order but until it arrives early next week I am riding on a patched tire. The cords on one sidewall are broken for about 1/4 inch.

teachme 07-14-11 02:39 PM

:welcome Better start saving your money for a new bike!!:thumb:

John_V 07-14-11 02:55 PM

Yes, pretty much all of us have been in your shoes when it comes to riding. My wife got me started almost 2 years ago by getting me a steel frame comfort bike for my 63rd birthday. Rode it the first day and didn't quite get in a mile but my legs felt like jello when I got off the bike. That was three bikes ago and over 4,500 miles since last July. It sounds like you are doing great. Just don't give up.

alanknm 07-17-11 11:07 PM

Just keep on moving. One thing leads to another.. and another ... and another and more $$$. :notamused:

I was a pretty active rider as a teen and had been out of the saddle for about 35+ years. Like John_V I got back on it in a serious way with a hybrid last year and got back on a road bike this spring. I've taken up a third sport since then (kayaking because I x-country ski in the winter) so I was out on the water a few hours a day up my cottage last week in a new 17 foot sea kayak with my wife and her boat and spent last weekend getting my level 1 certification after spending 6 hours a day out on the water for 2 days.

Now it's back on the bike for a week or so until I get back up north again and back on the water for another week.

One thing is for certain though, you can't beat cycling for the cardio workout and for the sheer exhilaration that you get when you start beating each goal that you set for yourself. The other upside to riding is that you also wind up getting tanned in a more symmetrical fashion. Two weeks of kayaking with a spray skirt on means that my face, head and the tops of my arms are tanned and the underside of my arms and legs are lighter than the rest of me. :D

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