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When are you too old to ride?

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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.

When are you too old to ride?

Old 11-20-19, 04:30 PM
  #51  
caloso
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Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
Yup. "You don't stop riding because you got too old, you get too old because you stopped riding."
Exactly!
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Old 11-20-19, 07:43 PM
  #52  
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Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
Yup. "You don't stop riding because you got too old, you get too old because you stopped riding."
That's my take too... at 70, still working full time with not enough time to ride much more than my commute, my plan is to dial back work to 3 days a week in order to build up my stamina. A few weeks ago my 72 year old buddy and me rode 33 miles with 2000 feet of climbing, and it felt darn good afterwards... first time in a long time that I experienced an endorphin buzz. I can't run, swimming is out due to separated shoulders, walking is OK but not half as much fun as being on the road. Call me an addict, I don't care.
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Old 11-20-19, 08:03 PM
  #53  
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I'm 68 and didn't start riding until I gave up running 7 years ago following a hip replacement. Last year to supplement my riding (2,500 miles/yr) I tried Spin Classes and was surprised at how much they helped me.
Between that and some relatively easy strength conditioning exercises at the gym I've kept or slightly increased my stamina each year. Like others have said will just keep riding as long as I can.
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Old 11-23-19, 10:19 AM
  #54  
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Originally Posted by epnnf View Post
At 64, I recently realized I can't do the things I used to do. Now, I ride shorter distances, ride a little slower, use a lower gear when standing on steep hills. Makes me wonder what the future will be like. Recumbent? E-bike? There will come a day when I'm too old to ride at all. Alternative sports? Shuffleboard? Walking? Blogging?
Last September I did a half century with my father. He's a very fit 73, I'm a fairly fit 51. I couldn't keep up with him. He beat me to each rest stop by 5-8 minutes.
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Old 11-23-19, 10:28 AM
  #55  
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Thereís a woman Iíve seen twice now on the greenways near my home - she has to be in her mid 90s. First time she was riding a fairly large hybrid / comfort bike in the opposite direction, and we exchanged smiles. I was riding with my kids in tow, and get a lot of smiles. Second time she was stopped and resting. A friend and I were riding our English roadsters, and she gave us a thumbs-up. A beautiful sight. Lots of age related things can probably stop one from riding, but age itself doesnít seem to be the main one.
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Old 11-23-19, 03:08 PM
  #56  
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I thought it was time to give up a few years ago. Was talking of 3 wheelers and stuff; I'd had one or two setbacks, stiff neck, shoulder rotator cuff tear, hernia, BCC cancer removal, but worst of all, cataracts and extreme short sightedness. My confidence in riding, driving, even walking, was precarious. Thought I was losing my mind almost.
Lens replacements followed by YAG laser over the last couple of years . . . .what a difference! And my Russian glaucoma-doctor is a Bond fantasy . . . .Gym bikes, road bikes, shopper bikes, love 'em all!
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Old 11-23-19, 09:06 PM
  #57  
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I was at my local bike dealer today talking about Trek Project One bikes. He was telling me one of the few he has sold was to a 75 yo rider. Said the gentleman's hand strength wasn't what it once was so he wanted to upgrade to Di2 shifting and hydraulic discs to make shifting and braking easier for him. I thought that was a neat story for someone taking advantage of the latest tech to keep riding.

My take, if you have that kind of money to drop on a Project One type bike and you want one why wait until it becomes a necessity? Might as well get it a little earlier in life so you can have more years to enjoy it.
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Old 11-24-19, 03:11 AM
  #58  
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Originally Posted by CrankyFranky View Post
That's my take too... at 70, still working full time with not enough time to ride much more than my commute, my plan is to dial back work to 3 days a week in order to build up my stamina. A few weeks ago my 72 year old buddy and me rode 33 miles with 2000 feet of climbing, and it felt darn good afterwards... first time in a long time that I experienced an endorphin buzz. I can't run, swimming is out due to separated shoulders, walking is OK but not half as much fun as being on the road. Call me an addict, I don't care.
Originally Posted by tobey View Post
I'm 68 and didn't start riding until I gave up running 7 years ago following a hip replacement. Last year to supplement my riding (2,500 miles/yr) I tried Spin Classes and was surprised at how much they helped me.
Between that and some relatively easy strength conditioning exercises at the gym I've kept or slightly increased my stamina each year. Like others have said will just keep riding as long as I can
Magnificent gentleman, and inspirational. For a moment I was beginning to think our generation wasn't good for anything besides super big gulps and power chairs.
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Old 11-24-19, 03:20 AM
  #59  
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I’m in my 60s with two stents in my hart and a double bypass. I’ll stop riding when I’m dead, no worries!

Last edited by tim24k; 11-24-19 at 03:23 AM.
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Old 11-24-19, 07:06 AM
  #60  
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The important thing here is keep on riding a long as you can. You will be rewarded with better health. As I said before, if you set you rust.
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Old 11-24-19, 11:11 PM
  #61  
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I will probably stop riding when I can't remember where I parked my bike.
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Old 11-25-19, 04:49 AM
  #62  
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When you're falling over a lot and can no longer maintain your balance.
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Old 11-25-19, 06:58 AM
  #63  
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Originally Posted by August West View Post
I was at my local bike dealer today talking about Trek Project One bikes. He was telling me one of the few he has sold was to a 75 yo rider. Said the gentleman's hand strength wasn't what it once was so he wanted to upgrade to Di2 shifting and hydraulic discs to make shifting and braking easier for him. I thought that was a neat story for someone taking advantage of the latest tech to keep riding.

My take, if you have that kind of money to drop on a Project One type bike and you want one why wait until it becomes a necessity? Might as well get it a little earlier in life so you can have more years to enjoy it.
I am considering swapping my Campagnolo triple with 10 speed rear for Di2, if I can't solve the wrist issue with wrist braces or some other orthopedic solution. I'll be visiting my hand specialist a few more times, I am sure. She didn't make very encouraging noises last time I went, as my hand issue is not only my CMC joint, but widely distributed OA.
Di2 might become necessary if I decide to switch from my road bars to another type of bar. I do love my road bars, but it is hard to attain a neutral wrist position. Shifting brifters of either Shimano or Campag type do impart strain also. But I will persue orthopedic solutions first.

The other point - about not waiting to treat yourself to a better and lighter bike - is also something I endorse. Why wait if you have the money? $2500 is less than a day's cost in most nursing homes! If you ride wisely and often, you may postpone that outcome.

Being a cheapskate, I waited far too long. I had a steel bike made for me in the 1980s, when gearing was still 2 X 6 f/r. I finally decided that if I wanted to climb hills again, I really needed modern gearing - and while I could have rebuilt my old bike with modern components, I figured why not simply...buy a more modern and lighter bike? So I did that, four years ago. I bought a used but high-end bike with 3 X 10 gears which was in great shape. But you can really get great gearing and light frame rigs for around $2200 or so. My riding buddy just bought himself a nice lightweight Trek with 2 X 12 for around that. You deserve it if you love to ride!

My particular locale is not conducive to recumbents or trikes, - traffic density and driver habits should be weighed when thinking about your options. So, without moving away from my city, I'll try to continue with upright bikes. Three decades ago I could sustain 19 mph over a full hour. Now, it's more like 10-12. Who needs fast when slow but steady gets you the same results?

Every medical article I read underscores staying active as a key strategy. If you embrace that idea and make sure that the medical professionals who serve you know your priorities, it serves to guide their recommendations. Some doctors need more persistent reminders, as more than a few think that it's time for us to sit down past a certain age.

Last edited by CrankyFranky; 11-25-19 at 07:13 AM. Reason: topic flow
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Old 11-25-19, 08:01 AM
  #64  
eja_ bottecchia
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Originally Posted by tim24k View Post
Iím in my 60s with two stents in my hart and a double bypass. Iíll stop riding when Iím dead, no worries!
I am in a similar situation. I am in my early 60s (gad I never thought that Iíd write that), I am diabetic and I sport seven coronary stents.

Riding is my drug of choice.

I will stop riding when I am dead...thank you very much.
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Old 11-25-19, 08:07 AM
  #65  
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@CrankyFranky, I have been experiencing constant pain at the base of my right wrist. It makes it uncomfortable to shift down my rear derailleur. So far it has only been an issue on rides longer than 50 miles.

I will see the doctor next week.

I am curious, what are your symptoms and what was your diagnosis?

Thank you.
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Old 11-25-19, 08:28 AM
  #66  
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I’m 75, have ridden 82,000 plus miles since 2006. Over the years I’ve had a broken cheekbone, shoulder and hip, this year I’m at 4,300 miles and counting. I also suffer from spinal stenosis and use a cane when walking, but these issues do not prevent me from riding. My cycling allows me to be active with no pain and will keep cycling as long as I possibly can.
Never give up!
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Old 11-25-19, 10:34 AM
  #67  
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Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
Yup. "You don't stop riding because you got too old, you get too old because you stopped riding."
Originally Posted by caloso View Post
Not trying to be flippant, but the day I can't ride my bike is the day that I am too old.
Word.

I do not want to challenge the cycling gods so I am quoting these.
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Old 11-25-19, 11:01 AM
  #68  
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Originally Posted by eja_ bottecchia View Post
@CrankyFranky, I have been experiencing constant pain at the base of my right wrist. It makes it uncomfortable to shift down my rear derailleur. So far it has only been an issue on rides longer than 50 miles.

I will see the doctor next week.

I am curious, what are your symptoms and what was your diagnosis?

Thank you.
Hi eja - ay, I have an '72 Atala... your Bottecchia and mine should get together and reminisce about the old country :-) just kidding.

I first went to the hand specialist two years ago complaining of bilateral wrist pain - she looked at my X-ray and said that I had CMC degeneration and that pain which originated there was becoming "referred pain radiating out on the back of both wrists. I tried the usual generic wrist support and NSAID for a few weeks and the pain vanished. Then it came back six months ago and I haven't shaken it off. But I've also been typing a lot at work. Anyhow, on revisiting the doc she said that 1) lots of other joints in my hand were degenerated and 2) cortisone in my CMC wouldn't do anything to help. I asked for some topical diclofenac to try, since my gut doesn't like systemic NSAIDS any longer. She was skeptical that it would reduce my pain, but gave me a script. It requires one to put a big glob on the area and let it soak in, pretty awkward. I'll go back to have her make other recommendations, and again remind her that riding is my primary exercise. I'm tempted to go ahead and purchase the Push-MetaGrip-Thumb-CMC-Orthosis devices, however expensive. Looks as if they are on sale for a few days.

But Hey - if you pain only shows up after 50 miles, count your blessings!
And good luck!

ps there is a thread on CMC arthritis in this subforum. Annnndd - while it is a bit early, the one hand that I was treating with the gel for a few days seems to be less painful than the one I wasn't treating... so I'll keep it up and try it 2 X day on both wrists for a week. Will report back

Last edited by CrankyFranky; 11-25-19 at 11:32 AM. Reason: forgot to add
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Old 11-25-19, 11:37 AM
  #69  
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I don't think you are ever too old to ride, if you can at all. If anything, riding keeps that boundary pushed back.
One of my grandfathers was born in 1896 and grew up riding horses for transportation. He never had much money, and got by on a bike as much as a car. He wasn't a "commuter", a "roadie", or anything like that. He just used bikes for transportation. In his upper sixties, living here in central west Texas, he took a notion to go back to "God's country", south Texas, about a 300 mile journey. He strapped what he had to his bicycle, loaded up his suitcase on the back of the bike, and headed out. He made it down there in about five days.
You're never too old to ride.
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Old 11-25-19, 12:08 PM
  #70  
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Rowing

Originally Posted by epnnf View Post
At 64, I recently realized I can't do the things I used to do. Now, I ride shorter distances, ride a little slower, use a lower gear when standing on steep hills. Makes me wonder what the future will be like. Recumbent? E-bike? There will come a day when I'm too old to ride at all. Alternative sports? Shuffleboard? Walking? Blogging?
Because of the weather, and a few very unfortunate accidents, Iíve been enjoying rowing indoors. Great exercise.
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Old 11-25-19, 12:17 PM
  #71  
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I'm 69 and have no problems riding and do not plan to quit in anytime soon. I have ridden 10,000 + miles this year. We live in a retirement area and I sometimes do group rides where most others are older than me. One 82 year friend doesn't ride with our group because our pace of 15-16 MPH is too slow for him. Another 87 year old keeps up with us just fine.

When I have difficulties I plan to go to trike and then an E trike. Then maybe a trainer in the nursing home?



Originally Posted by epnnf View Post
At 64, I recently realized I can't do the things I used to do. Now, I ride shorter distances, ride a little slower, use a lower gear when standing on steep hills. Makes me wonder what the future will be like. Recumbent? E-bike? There will come a day when I'm too old to ride at all. Alternative sports? Shuffleboard? Walking? Blogging?
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Old 11-25-19, 12:24 PM
  #72  
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I'm 66-1/2+ and recently increased my distance to hit 2,500+ mi/yr. on my mtb. Next summer I'm planning to start backpacking again (8-10 mi. trip ups to 10,000+ ft. elev. after not having backpacked for 10+ years).

You're only as old as you feel. And you only feel/get old if you stop doing things to keep your body (and mind) limber and conditioned.

Keep doing what you're doing (riding and any other exercises/activities you may do) so I'm not out here all by myself
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Old 11-25-19, 12:24 PM
  #73  
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Too old, think not. I'll be 87 in February and get 20 miles on most days, strive for 25, and have been known to touch 35. Hope to be posting here when I'm 90??
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Old 11-25-19, 12:27 PM
  #74  
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Iím 64 and remember when that seemed old.

Wife and I just got new hybrids last month and we plan to ride a lot. So far 10 miles is about the limit but that will increases.
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Old 11-25-19, 12:37 PM
  #75  
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Originally Posted by epnnf View Post
At 64, I recently realized I can't do the things I used to do. Now, I ride shorter distances, ride a little slower, use a lower gear when standing on steep hills. Makes me wonder what the future will be like. Recumbent? E-bike? There will come a day when I'm too old to ride at all. Alternative sports? Shuffleboard? Walking? Blogging?
I'm 74 in a couple months, and bicycles are an integral part of my fitness routine. I wouldn't consider giving them up. As long as I'm not falling off, I will probably continue to ride. I also ride and race motorcycles at the track, and broke my neck in a crash six weeks ago. I'll be back out riding bikes of both kinds, however. I am already back on the bicycle.
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