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How much fitness

Old 07-31-19, 06:01 AM
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Roadlizzard
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How much fitness

Everyone please give me your thoughts, I'm 70 yo have low blood pressure have fantastic cholesterol numbers, I ride 500 miles a month, walk 80 miles a month and work out at the gym with weights three times a week for about 5 hours a week. I have been riding for 6 years and during those six years I have ridden as hard and as fast as I could always with a group faster than myself. I usually ride 40 to 50 miles with and average heart rate (total time start to finish counting have way breaks) of around 123 and hitting max of over 175 several time during the ride. Riding at speeds of 21 mph or higher just beat me up so much! I have finally decided that I don't really need to ride this hard,the last couple ride I have ridden with a slower group and smelled the roses and look at the world. Does anyone think I really need to push myself that hard all the time. I not ever going to race so why do I need all that speed? All comments are welcome. THANKS
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Old 07-31-19, 06:11 AM
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What are your goals? Ride to meet your goals.
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Old 07-31-19, 06:16 AM
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I don’t think you need to push hard all the time but once in a while it’s fun to push hard. I’m only 59 but still enjoy beating myself up with friends. I notice my sprint power has declined over the last 10 yrs but 20min power hasn’t changed much yet. Would love to think nothing will change in the next 10 yrs but I’m doubtful.
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Old 07-31-19, 06:33 AM
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I guess I really don't have any goals except to live a long and healthy life
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Old 07-31-19, 06:42 AM
  #5  
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For myself, I sometimes feel like smelling the roses, and, other times I feel like pushing myself as hard as possible. I enjoy both and often mix-it-up on a given ride.

It's fun playing sprinter.. and other times thinking I'm KOM. It's all in my head but it sure is fun. Still other times I just cruise along the flats smelling the roses.

I do enjoy seeing my own overall improvements. I've been riding tons for the last few years and I'm still seeing gradual improvements as recently as this year at age 66.
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Old 07-31-19, 07:03 AM
  #6  
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Are you a late bloomer athlete? If so, you're just going thru what most athletes go thru just at a later stage in life. Sounds like you just need a break. I say take a month or two off ( low intensity) or use your great fitness base towards some other athletic endeavor or fitness activity. After your batteries are recharged, get back on the horse or find another horse. But I'm not 70 so what do I know?
Either way, Much respect to you.
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Old 07-31-19, 07:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Roadlizzard View Post
I'm 70 yo have low blood pressure have fantastic cholesterol numbers, I ride 500 miles a month, walk 80 miles a month and work out at the gym with weights three times a week for about 5 hours a week.
Regardless if you're pushing yourself or not, those are some great numbers. Sounds like you keep busy. My hat's off to you!
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Old 07-31-19, 07:18 AM
  #8  
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Also 70 and I would think you could use a little less intensity. I ride, lift free weights, walk and have found I need to set days off, lower intensity, to recover. When I was pushing everyday I flatlined and could not improve my personal bests on any of my segments. Taking a day off or just going out to crusie I find I get better results. I don't recover like I did in my 50's and that was/is a hard pill to swallow but the results, in my case, are hard to ignore. I do not stop riding as I find I lose ground way to easily so I will at the very least get some time on my elliptical. This is what works for me so take it with a grain of salt.
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Old 07-31-19, 08:54 AM
  #9  
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Sir, Humbly, Respectfully

You are 70 years old! You have earned the right to do whatever the hell you damn well please! You did the work, you paid it forward and here you are. If you want to work hard then do so. Roses are good too!! The rest of us could be so lucky!
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Old 07-31-19, 12:05 PM
  #10  
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Thanks everyone I guess I fell a little guilty that I do not want to push it really hard any more. I think I will ride at a leisure pace most of the time and have one ride doing intervals one a week or even once every two weeks. Today I walked with walking stick doing the Nordic walk WOW for someone who walks 10 miles at a time walking with the stick was a real work out. Thanks everyone
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Old 07-31-19, 01:13 PM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by Roadlizzard View Post
Does anyone think I really need to push myself that hard all the time. I not ever going to race so why do I need all that speed?
No you don't, and it's not a good plan for fitness as recovery is just as important as the endurance, power and speed work needed for cycling fitness.
Read Friel on the subject for a cyclist of any age & not just racers: Fast After 50:

https://www.amazon.com/Fast-After-50...s%2C172&sr=1-3

Do you need a good turn of speed on demand? Certainly.
When just entering an intersection and the light changes, get across ASAP.
When descending a series of rolling hills to keep the momentum up for the next uphill.
When keeping a decent average speed up gets you home before dark on long ride.
Just because it's fun to go fast, especially in a well practiced pace-line.

That being said Recovery Rides are done at a conversational pace, and are quite enjoyable in their way.

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Old 07-31-19, 01:21 PM
  #12  
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As Machka said, ride to meet your goals. If you are trying to improve, either speed or endurance, then it usually pays to mix up your training regimen some. For example, do some days with relatively short all-out speed riding or interval training, punctuated by long days in the saddle where you go for endurance, further punctuated by recovery rides where you do that "smell the roses" thing with the primary goal being sightseeing, a good lunch stop, and perhaps some adult beverages along the way..
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Old 07-31-19, 01:37 PM
  #13  
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Originally Posted by Roadlizzard View Post
Does anyone think I really need to push myself that hard all the time. I not ever going to race so why do I need all that speed? All comments are welcome. THANKS
If "life is your battlefield", you are doing it right:

"I train like I'm training for the Olympics or for a Mr. America contest, the way I've always trained my whole life. You see, life is a battlefield. Life is survival of the fittest. How many healthy people do you know? How many happy people do you know? Think about it. People work at dying, they don't work at living. My workout is my obligation to life. It's my tranquilizer. It's part of the way I tell the truth**and telling the truth is what's kept me going all these years," -- The Godfather of Fitness, Francois Henri LaLanne
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Old 07-31-19, 03:01 PM
  #14  
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Only 69 here. I ride about 500miles/mo, at varying intensity about 8 or 9 months/yr, some winter skiing (former ski patroller) and 2 kayaks help as fill-ins. If I was at the gym regularly (only sporadically), there would be no time for walking 80mi/mo. After retirement I was a Forest Service Wilderness Ranger (2 summers paid, 5 summers volunteer) and 80mi/mo with a 35# pack was typical. So I like hiking, and still hike once or twice a week on the local hilly trails, but probably only 20mi/mo.

If I were you, I would reduce either bike or hike mileage and find a less physical hobby for enjoyment into your next decade.

What amazes me is that you can get a max HR up to 175! I can't get above 155. Resting HR (taken early morning) is low 40s.

My opinion: At my age I can only achieve a certain level of fitness without changing much of my life routine, possibly negatively impacting other family members. Going longer, faster, harder for me builds fatigue not fitness. At your level a 'senior fitness coach' might be the best idea. Yoga? Meditation? Wholistic counselor?
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Old 07-31-19, 03:06 PM
  #15  
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I don't know what your goals are but whatever they are, riding full gas every ride is not optimal.
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Old 07-31-19, 03:49 PM
  #16  
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Seems you are in fantastic shape. I'm just 51 and have been trying incredibly hard to get in shape for a year. The best thing I can tell you is to listen to your body. I would think you have been doing this long enough to know how hard to push and when to ease off a little. I want to go hard as I can but at the same time not kill my stupid self.
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Old 07-31-19, 04:25 PM
  #17  
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You simply need to figure out how much total training stress you can handle, week after week, year after year, and don't go over that. I periodize my cycling/training each year. I back it off from about now until the end of September each year. Then I start over with endurance work and gradually build up to the hard stuff about the end of May. I've been cycling my body like that for about 20 years. It works.

I get assistance in/planning all that by recording and planning my activities, whatever they are, on my computer. I have a premium TrainingPeaks account. You can generate your personal year's training plan in there. I find having the numbers a big help in keeping going, but not too hard. I use a Garmin Edge for biking and wear a Polar recording watch for walking, hiking, running, weights, etc. I find it helpful to quantify all my training.
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Old 07-31-19, 07:11 PM
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By reading everyone reply I guess my problem is I don't really have a set of goals. Like I said my only goal is to have a healthy active life as long as possible. I might change my thinking at a later time but riding hard just so I can ride at a fast pace just doesn't seem that important nor does it really mean I will have a healthier life. I know having more recover time would really change everything but I don't want to stop and recover, I enjoy riding at a slower pace so the next day I can work out or go for a hike or long walk. I know it silly and I really don't have a problem,everyone whom work out rides or walks is the 1% of the US population and we all should be proud of ourselves. One way to look at it is if I decide to ride a little slower and spend time doing other activities it doesn't mean I can't change my mind set and start riding like mad again. THANKS
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Old 07-31-19, 07:29 PM
  #19  
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I wish I could keep my heart rate down sometimes, I can hit 180 after a could hours riding then do a hard fast sprint.
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Old 08-02-19, 01:13 PM
  #20  
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Originally Posted by Roadlizzard View Post
I don't want to stop and recover, I enjoy riding at a slower pace so the next day I can work out or go for a hike or long walk.
"Active Recovery" on the bike is part of a well designed cycling fitness program, although there are days off the bike completely in a seasonal plan as well.
Too much to go into in a BF post with well researched books available on the subject for those who are interested in a structured training plan, why and how-to. See Post # 11.

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Old 08-02-19, 02:19 PM
  #21  
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It's not really an "either/or" choice. You can do both, on the same ride if you want to.
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Old 08-02-19, 05:08 PM
  #22  
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I have a copy of Fast After 50 on my nightstand. One of my main takeaways is that intensity is still important for older athletes, probably more important than volume, but recovery is a must. When I am in the middle of a heavy training cycle, I absolutely need to schedule in active recovery time. Some times that takes the form of a walk around the park with my wife or a super-easy ride. So easy that little kids on training wheels are dropping me.
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Old 08-02-19, 05:09 PM
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At 60, after 2 years of going slow and long due to health issues, I started riding hard again. Two days a week I hammer the pedals as hard as I can for 20 miles. Some days I absolutely enjoy it, others I question why I am doing it. What I have noticed that the easy days are easier and faster than they were last year and the year before. It must be good for the body to bring up the bpm into or near the red zone every once in a while, however if one is not so inclined to do so, who cares? It is just as well that one enjoys the activity so they keep coming back to it and reap the benefits of being out there and moving.
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Old 08-02-19, 05:13 PM
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do what makes you have fun

14mph was what my averege was in the '80 for all the miles i put in commuting. I'm still commuting by bike and i still average 14mph. Im fit and alive still so just do what you want
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Old 08-03-19, 06:24 AM
  #25  
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How much fitness
Originally Posted by Roadlizzard View Post
Everyone please give me your thoughts, I'm 70 yo have low blood pressure have fantastic cholesterol numbers, I ride 500 miles a month, walk 80 miles a month and work out at the gym with weights three times a week for about 5 hours a week.

I have been riding for 6 years and during those six years I have ridden as hard and as fast as I could…

I have finally decided that I don't really need to ride this hard,the last couple ride I have ridden with a slower group and smelled the roses and look at the world.

Does anyone think I really need to push myself that hard all the time. I not ever going to race so why do I need all that speed? All comments are welcome. THANKS
I have posted:
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
I’m a 40+ year [long] cyclist and I ride mainly for fitness. My training tool is the Relative Perceived Exertion (RPE) Scale, and I use cadence to chose gears to maintain my desired exertion.

My basic training is…[follow the link]
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
My basic premise was that I wanted to get significantly fit, within a busy work/family time-crunched life, but not suffer so much that I would abandon the program.

I do have the advantages of a very nice minimum 14 mile one way commute that is easily extended; and a high end, very comfortable carbon fiber road bike that encourages riding.
I also have mileage goals, including weekly cumulative miles, depending on the weather and what I'm training for:
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
How many miles is a "good ride”

I have previously posted that I consider a “ride,” worthy of suiting up, going out, and warming up to be at least 10 miles (my one-way commute is 14). I consider a “good” (long) ride, e.g. on a weekend for training, or on a tour, to be at least 40 miles.
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
What is your average miles per week (or hours) for us old guys...”

I have the opportunity to commute a minimal 14 miles one-way during the week (Commuter Rail home), and round-trip on Saturday all year-round, for about 100 miles a week. During the nice weather, I’d like to put in about 150-200 miles to train and do long rides.

In reality though, I probably get in about 20-30 miles per week during the winter, and maybe about 75-100 during the nice weather (to include early evening rides).

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 08-03-19 at 07:49 AM.
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