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Height Lost Over Aging

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Height Lost Over Aging

Old 02-19-20, 06:11 AM
  #51  
dirtman
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I'm just shy of 64, when I was 18 I rode a 63cm frame, now that I'm older, I lost only about 1/2" of height but it was early on in life due to a crash. (Spine compression in a rather minor helicopter crash).
I find two issues 'fitting' on a bike these days, especially since I'm getting back into it again after about 18 years of not riding.
I have reach issues, leg extension issues, and back issues that prevent me from riding a bike with dt shifters, or drop bars for that matter. My knees are bad, have been for years, riding a bike that doesn't give me full leg extension leaves me in pain after riding, as does riding in a drop bar position. Its a combination of my gut getting in the way and the fact that I can't breath properly bent over combined with back pain.
Most of my road bikes have been downsized to a 57cm frame but with taller stems and taller seat posts. This was mostly for reach issues. I run all straight bars now.
I also can't ride as long as I used to because the road shock starts to cause back pain.
As I get older, having worked with my hands all my life, my hands also have issues holding the bars in one position for very long. My hand fall asleep on even short rides if I don't keep moving positions. Cold weather makes all my joints stiff, I move slower these days. I also don't have the same natural balance I used to have. Some of that is likely due to loss of some hearing and vision over the years. I noticed the biggest declines physically in my mid 40's, and its been a steady downhill slope since then. A broken foot, and broken leg in '07 due to a fall, and a knee injury again to the same leg in '17 has only made for more issues over the year. three hernia surgeries two years ago, and one on the way, lung and breathing issues from a bad respiratory infection in '15 have taken their toll as well.
Most of the guys I rode with over the years are gone, buried years ago, most were older, others just didn't survive to get old. Car accidents, cancer, falls, illness, physical injury all take a toll as you age. Somethings you get past, others you learn to live with. When I was younger, I never figured I'd live this long. I never once pictured my self old with gray hair. I fully expected not to make it much past 35 when I was younger and I lived that way. I'm paying for it now. Having to buy a smaller or larger bike as you get older is a non issue compared to the other things life throws at you.
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Old 02-19-20, 07:56 AM
  #52  
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I like the response @Wildwood left above and @dirtman too, I think both are in-line with my experience. At 20, I was just under 6' 2", by the time I hit 40, on a good day I may measure 6' ½" and on current trajectory, I'm expecting to be 5' 11½" by 60. I engaged heavily in a sports and activities that led to compression (skateboarding, cliff diving, etc.)

I was always told in my earlier years to fit into the tallest thing I can manage which was more in the 61-62 range CTC. I found myself most comfortable ~59 CTC range by 30-35. This past decade I've been thinking forward, I picked up a couple of bikes in the 57-58 CTC range and equipped them to allow stretching out a bit more: 175 cranks, longer stem, etc. that way it's not too much of a PITA to make minor tweaks later if I remain on target to reach 60 under 6' tall.

It's been working out pretty well for me. The takeaway I'd share: Expect your vertical numbers to reduce, things compress with age and gravity. Just know you'll have some wiggle room. And depending on how you were taught to fit into a bike, you may want to adjust the way you look at fitment if you really want to future-proof your riding options.
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Last edited by francophile; 02-19-20 at 04:38 PM. Reason: Apparently 5ft and 6ft aren't the same thing.
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Old 02-19-20, 07:56 AM
  #53  
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Originally Posted by J.Higgins View Post
I'd love to buy a nice old Colnago, but I'm a little short...
So...buy a little one!
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Old 02-19-20, 12:41 PM
  #54  
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Originally Posted by J.Higgins View Post
I'd love to buy a nice old Colnago, but I'm a little short...






LOL, that’s usually my problem, too. 😁
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Old 02-19-20, 12:54 PM
  #55  
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The husband of a friend from work lost enough height that his vintage bike didn't fit properly anymore. Fortunately, his old frame fits me just fine.
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Old 02-19-20, 01:31 PM
  #56  
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Originally Posted by thumpism View Post
So...buy a little one!
I just did!

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Old 02-19-20, 02:18 PM
  #57  
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fwiw - at almost 61, I ride the same size frame I rode in high school in my late teens. can't fit in the same clothes however ... ;-( my 93 yr old Dad is thin, so maybe there's hope for me down the road?
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Old 02-19-20, 02:22 PM
  #58  
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Originally Posted by francophile View Post
At 20, I was just under 6' 2", by the time I hit 40, on a good day I may measure 6' ½" and on current trajectory, I'm expecting to be 5' 11½" by 60
I would think as we age we lose height mostly in our torso, not our legs
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Old 02-19-20, 02:23 PM
  #59  
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I've lost an inch or so in height, but it's above the waist. My problem is my butt has dissolved and turned into gut, and my pants try to move down my legs about the time I'm trying to get the leg over the saddle. I can still get on the old 23-1/2" frame if I sneak up on it, though.
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Old 02-19-20, 02:32 PM
  #60  
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Originally Posted by Ol Danl View Post
my pants try to move down my legs about the time I'm trying to get the leg over the saddle. I can still get on the old 23-1/2" frame if I sneak up on it, though.
lol I use cheap Walmart suspenders with my cycling pants
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Old 02-19-20, 02:52 PM
  #61  
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At 68 I'm about 2.5cm shorter than I was in my 20s, but it didn't affect my cycling.
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Old 02-19-20, 03:05 PM
  #62  
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Non Pool related shrinkage, But I am almost 2" shorter than I was 20 years ago, vast majority through my torso.. Age, joint injuries, knee replacement, spinal compression... But the worst single issue for me was breaking my spine @ T9 and 6 level fusion T7-12. No way to stretch and bring that back.

I used to ride 60cm only, and still enjoy 60cm bikes, but I've added a couple 58cm frames as well. 2 of my 26' wheel MTB bikes are 22" frames, one is a 20". And while my 700c hybrid SAYS 20.5"/52cm, standover height at the middle sloped top tube is 34"... That is pretty tight, my 29er is 33.5 in the same spot.
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Old 02-19-20, 03:41 PM
  #63  
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
"I recall having a height of 6'1/2". Lost it. Can't remember where. Got given a new one. (From my doc?) It was half an inch shorter.. Lost that one too. The one I've got now is even shorter. D***ed inflation!"

"I can live with this height thing getting shorter. It's the constant losing of stuff I can't stand." (They do say aging isn't for sissies.)

Ben
This reads kind of like Twain. I like it
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Old 02-19-20, 04:37 PM
  #64  
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Originally Posted by rumrunn6 View Post
I would think as we age we lose height mostly in our torso, not our legs
That's definitely where I'm losing mine, lower torso, and a lot of sacral and lumbar pain arrived in its place. You having a different experience?
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Old 02-19-20, 05:11 PM
  #65  
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Wow, lots of old, shrinking dudes on this forum.
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Old 02-19-20, 05:12 PM
  #66  
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I'm not afraid of heights. I'm afraid of widths.
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Old 02-19-20, 05:37 PM
  #67  
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Originally Posted by zjrog View Post
No way to stretch and bring that back.
Nonsense. Where’s Morticia Addams when you need her? Half an hour on the rack should do! 😁😉

Not really a slur on BG there at all, I’ve been watching a lot of Addams Family, on Pluto. 😎
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Old 02-19-20, 05:52 PM
  #68  
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Originally Posted by J.Higgins View Post
I'm not afraid of heights. I'm afraid of widths.
Quoth Steven Wright.

Originally Posted by stardognine View Post
Nonsense. Where’s Morticia Addams when you need her? Half an hour on the rack should do! 😁😉

Not really a slur on BG there at all, I’ve been watching a lot of Addams Family, on Pluto. 😎
Wasn't she thinking about putting a rack one roof?.....

And let's leave the cartoon dogs out of this.
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Old 02-19-20, 06:02 PM
  #69  
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I am 65 and am the same height I was when I was in my early 20s. My shoe size has gotten bigger though.
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Old 02-19-20, 06:45 PM
  #70  
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Originally Posted by nlerner View Post
Wow, lots of old, shrinking dudes on this forum.
As long as the other stuff isn't shrinking, I'm good with it!
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Old 02-19-20, 06:57 PM
  #71  
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If the bike the OP is referring to is CF, I think he shouldn't worry at all.
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Old 02-19-20, 07:44 PM
  #72  
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Originally Posted by Reynolds View Post
If the bike the OP is referring to is CF, I think he shouldn't worry at all.
CF= Carbon fiber?
Nein!
Vintage steel touring bike. I guess the fact that it's a touring bike makes the geometry more relaxed. I read ST is proportional to TT in another thread. Noy sure if road bikes have it equal, but for my touring bike the TT is 58cm and ST 60cm. It fits me nicely. I've tried riding smaller frames and they just don't feel as comfortable since my knees hit the handlebar ends.

Loving the comments!
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Old 02-19-20, 08:19 PM
  #73  
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Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
Quoth Steven Wright.

Wasn't she thinking about putting a rack one roof?.....

And let's leave the cartoon dogs out of this.
In case you’re not familiar, Pluto is an app for Apple devices, that lets you watch TV & movies for free. 🙂 That was part of why I bought an older iPad mini, for touring. A 7.9” screen looks pretty big for TV, but you can hold it with one hand pretty easily. 👍
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Old 02-19-20, 08:25 PM
  #74  
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At 19yo, at my tallest, I was 5' 8-1/2". Now 40+ years later, I'm barely 5' 7".

Back then, I preferred the 23" frame to the 21" (Fuji only came in odd inch sizing back then) because the 21" felt too 'cramped' fore/aft. I didn't know about different stem lengths back then, LOL!

Anyway, I still prefer the 'too-tall' 23" or 58/57cm frames. Actually, a 22"/56cm would probably be better for 'the boys', but that wasn't an option open to me, but I've grown to prefer the longer reach...

Soooo... My Fuji that I bought back then is 23", and the Miyata 710 and both Univegas are all 58/57cm. Conventional sizing says they're too big, but that's what I still prefer...

I haven't even considered a sloping toptube bike because 'that's just wrong' to my C&V eye... Likewise, all of my bikes have (foolproof) friction shifting.


Hmmm.... maybe I'm on to something. Short stature, long arms... I'm an ape - or maybe just a Luddite!
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Old 02-19-20, 08:44 PM
  #75  
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Originally Posted by francophile View Post
That's definitely where I'm losing mine, lower torso, and a lot of sacral and lumbar pain arrived in its place. You having a different experience?
haven’t lost any height yet but got my share of aches & pains :/
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