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How long does it take to get bike fit?

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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.

How long does it take to get bike fit?

Old 08-24-09, 04:51 PM
  #26  
Jim from Boston
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Originally Posted by itsnevertoolate View Post
I'm 58 years old and have been riding 2-3 times a week (approx 50 - 70mi per week) for 1 year. Prior to that I walked 2-3 miles a day for approximately 1 year. It is taking much longer than I expected to become bike fit (climbing ability and endurance) and would welcome any input or suggestions from anyone that has had a similar experience given age and effort.
Originally Posted by DnvrFox View Post
...I think having a very specific goal, such as riding a century (100 miles in a day) is a prompt for more intensive training, which will lead very rapidly to being better "bike fit."...

Good luck, but mostly, have fun.
Originally Posted by BengeBoy View Post
I think you'd see some benefit from biking 4 or 5 days a week, even if the rides are shorter.

If you want to be a bit more hard core, find any of a number of plans on "how to train for a century," and follow those for several weeks....even if you're *not* going to train for a century it will give you some idea of the kind of plan you get get on to increase your endurance and speed...
During the winter (November to April) I do a commute of about 70 miles/week. Beginning in May I do a ten week century training schedule with daily specified miles, gradually raising my distance to almost 200 per week,and the increase in fitness is significant. For example my resting HR of a constant 48 bpm went down to 42, and the subjective feeling of increased well-being is remarkable. Following the schedule is motivating, but I find it ultimately requires about an extra 10 to 12 hours per week. It's disapointing when October comes around and the weather begins to de-motivate me.

If you are interested in the schedule, I'd have to search around for it, but I'd be glad to post it.

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 08-24-09 at 04:59 PM.
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Old 08-24-09, 10:31 PM
  #27  
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Thank you all for the support... For now I will define 'fit' as keeping up with the weekend group ride that dropped me like a rock in spring... my goal is to be able to 'keep up' by May of next year...
I find I reach MHR quite quickly with effort and seem to be limited by heart rate and lack of oxygen albeit they are both getting better.... am interested in the schedule if available...
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Old 08-24-09, 10:36 PM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by itsnevertoolate View Post
I'm 58 years old and have been riding 2-3 times a week (approx 50 - 70mi per week) for 1 year. Prior to that I walked 2-3 miles a day for approximately 1 year. It is taking much longer than I expected to become bike fit (climbing ability and endurance) and would welcome any input or suggestions from anyone that has had a similar experience given age and effort.
I started 20 months. Just finished the 42 Ride 3400 miles in 59 days.
I am getting stronger and fasted after 22,400 miles.
Takes about Two full years.
Find a faster group to ride behind, then try to keep up with them.
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Last edited by 10 Wheels; 08-24-09 at 10:39 PM.
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Old 08-25-09, 01:25 AM
  #29  
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When I read the subject line, I thought this thread was about how long it took to get a bike that would fit, and I was going to respond that you'll probably get the frame size right by about the sixth bike. But by then you'll be bike fit, at any rate.

L.
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Old 08-25-09, 06:08 AM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by gcottay View Post
For me, the key is to ride, ride, ride and enjoy it.

I find simple and informal interval training useful. When I feel like it, I gradually apply full power until I begin to deeply regret it and then slowly ease off back to cruising speed, repeating as the spirit moves.

I've also found that a longish warm up -- trying to ride sort of slowly and spin gently for the first five miles -- results in faster rides. Starting that way I don't even decide when it's time for regular riding. It just happens.
Wow... that is exactly how it goes with me! +1
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Old 08-25-09, 06:13 AM
  #31  
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I like two of the local group rides that push me harder than I would do by myself. One rides more and steeper hills, the other cranks up the pace on the flat roads. Both of these rides go hard for 3-10 minutes at a time, then either regroup or hit a stop light, etc. So it's informal interval training. I've never tried formal intervals that do sets of x minutes hard and x minutes easy.

Last edited by rm -rf; 08-25-09 at 06:19 AM.
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Old 08-25-09, 06:20 AM
  #32  
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This thread is interesting because it shows the wide range of how folks in the 50+ forum define "fit" and the process to obtain it.

All the way from detailed examples of VO2 max aimed at racing and time trial success to ride, ride, ride and enjoy it.

This represents the wonderful divergence of personality styles and individual goals represented in the 50+ forum.

All is good.

And you get to choose whatever here (or somewhere else) fits your own personality style and goals to become whatever you have self-defined as "bike fit."

But, mostly, have fun!!
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Old 08-25-09, 06:25 AM
  #33  
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Some before me on this thread have addressed attaining bicycle fitness. Actually, you will consider yourself bicycle fit when you can pass Alberto on a big climb.
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Old 08-25-09, 07:53 AM
  #34  
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Get a heart rate monitor and ride over lactate threshold periodically. That really improves fitness and cycling performance very quickly at any age. It also dramatically lowers resting heart rate. The big effect on cycling is that it causes one to generate more power at lower heart rates which boosts speed/endurance. I sometimes spend almost an hour over lactate threshold on my mountain bike rides.

Weight training is highly desirable, especially as one ages (I'm 70). Squats with weights near body weight are particularly good. Takes about a year to build up to that kind of weight so it doesn't negatively affect the cycling. Technique is critical to protect the knees. If you race, you'll want to back-off the weight during racing season.

Get a cycling training book. Chris Carmichael has a new one for the time-crunched. There's also a new book (withing the last year?) on weight training for cyclists. Can't remember the title and it's at another location at the moment. It might actually be "Weight Training for Cyclists".


I started biking a few years after retirement at 58. I was fit due to strenuous canoing, weight training, walking and some jogging. it takes a few years. Road biking is relatively quick, the mointain biking took 3 or 4 years to get well skilled.

Keeping performance records helps track performance and is motivational for some of us. It also helps being in denial about getting old.

Al
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Old 08-25-09, 08:10 AM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by The Weak Link View Post
No need to get personal about this.
Heh, heh. Sorry. Some things just need to be said.
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Old 08-25-09, 09:33 AM
  #36  
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Prior to cycling (other than walking) I was more or less sedentary. When I began cycling last year I could hardly make it over an overpass. My heart rate would sore and I had difficulty with getting enough air (oxygen). Since then I have noticed considerable progress. I bought a heart rate monitor and have recorded a MHR of 188. Most of my cycling efforts take me into the anaerobic range (not sure if this is desirable or not). It is my hope that over time that will change. My RHR is 58 (taken over a week). From what I've been reading here, setting goals and developing startegies will promote the results I am striving for.
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Old 08-25-09, 10:09 AM
  #37  
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Forgot to mention nutrition. How you eat during the ride and various periods after the ride affect your energy level, endurance and recovery. Recovery is key for us older folks if you like to stay active and get your energy back asap.

Ryan is first class on the subject as she deals with nutrition for health as well. The weight training book I mentioned previously is the second link.

Al


https://www.amazon.com/Sports-Nutrition-Endurance-Athletes-Monique/dp/1931382964/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1251216211&sr=1-1


https://www.amazon.com/Weight-Training-Cyclists-Program-Endurance/dp/1934030295/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1251216275&sr=1-1
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Old 08-25-09, 08:42 PM
  #38  
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Perhaps this helps?
I biked on local trails for 15 years. Hybrid bike and speeds of under 15MPH. About 200 miles per week max. Some trips 100 miles/day but at 10 MPH average.
The result? I got fat.
------------------------
There was a point I decided to get in shape. I picked an achievable goal. A CC tour at 17 MPH average with 120 miles/day average for 25 biking days.
To do that I got friendly with a bike on a trainer. Strap on a HRM and go at it for 17 MPH for hours. It is murder but will get you fit.
Next step do 50 miles per day trail biking at 50 miles in 3 hours or less on limestone with a Hybrid.
All of that made me survive the first CC tour of 3,000 miles, barely.
-----------------
I did not like my performance and retired from my job. Rented a place on a Bike path in Florida and trained 100 miles/day for 120 days.
That did it. I was reasonably fit and was able to keep up with the main groups.
There were still bikers who dropped me. There is always someone stronger, faster, fitter.
However I am satisfied with my abilities.
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Old 02-27-20, 03:31 PM
  #39  
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Weighing yourself down?

Originally Posted by itsnevertoolate View Post
I'm 58 years old and have been riding 2-3 times a week (approx 50 - 70mi per week) for 1 year. Prior to that I walked 2-3 miles a day for approximately 1 year. It is taking much longer than I expected to become bike fit (climbing ability and endurance) and would welcome any input or suggestions from anyone that has had a similar experience given age and effort.
i started cycling with my new tour bike recently , after using my mountain bike for a long while ..not traveling too far, just going off road and foraging in forests up and down hills...with my new bike I can climb hills better just in a few days with 35kg plus on the back of it ..I ride with my 6 year old, bags, backpack, lock, water etc ...I have found in a few days I can now climb a lot better but I feel its an extreme change to undergo, and I have almost pushed myself too much but my fitness has jumped. Perhaps adding weight could increase the fitness level on shorter rides? I can still get some fair speed with all that going on , on the flat.
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Old 02-27-20, 05:18 PM
  #40  
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Autz,
Welcome to Bike Forums. Nice to hear you are riding.

Just a little thing.....
You replied to a thread that was 11 years old. It's from 2009

Not really a problem, but as it is your first post I thought I mention it so that you know.
If you revive such an old thread, many will not reply to you.

All the best

Welcome again

Barry
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Old 02-27-20, 08:12 PM
  #41  
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Great thread and very much interested.


I came into cycling as a guy who had been consistently “working out” for about 3 years after not doing much for 20 years. For the past 3 years I had been lifting pretty hard 3 days a week and doing 30 minutes of, what I thought, was solid cardio 3 days a week.

I got my bike in August and cycling has really shown me how very average my cardio strength was. I mean, I got my “doors blown off” lol

When it was warmer, I could get 3 solid rides a week in and built up to my first 20 mile ride. But winter hit and I have only been able to ride 2 or even 1 time a week. So I went backwards and my last few rides I’m only getting 10-16 miles.

Im looking forward to warmer weather and being able to get to routine 20 mile rides. That would be awesome for me.

But I realize that in many ways...that would just be a “beginning” when I look at how accomplished many of you guys are.

Just happy I found cycling and looking forward to many miles ahead ; )
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Old 02-28-20, 07:01 AM
  #42  
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All I want to say is that you can't out train a poor diet, and proper rest and recovery gets even more critical as you age.
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Old 02-28-20, 10:49 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by Autz View Post
..with my new bike I can climb hills better just in a few days with 35kg plus on the back of it ..I ride with my 6 year old, bags, backpack, lock, water etc ...I have found in a few days I can now climb a lot better but I feel its an extreme change to undergo, and I have almost pushed myself too much but my fitness has jumped. Perhaps adding weight could increase the fitness level on shorter rides? I can still get some fair speed with all that going on , on the flat.
You're carrying 80 pounds on your bike and you want to know if adding weight will help your fitness?

Your 6 year old, as in your child?
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Old 02-28-20, 02:20 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by big john View Post
You're carrying 80 pounds on your bike and you want to know if adding weight will help your fitness?

Your 6 year old, as in your child?
i meant the dude who was originally posting about bike fitness...he never said anything about how much weight he carries, i thought it was relevant in ways to improve endurance possibly..

yeah my child is 6, and we have a long way to school.
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Old 03-01-20, 10:53 AM
  #45  
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A sign over the sales counter in a bike shop I once visited read, "The more you ride, the better you get. The better you get, the more you ride," Turned out to be true for me.
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Old 03-01-20, 08:11 PM
  #46  
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Was 202 lbs when I originally posted this... Now, 11 years later I'm 163 lbs... weight, IMHO, makes a difference, but not as much as riding as regularly as you can. I am recently retired and riding 4-5 times a week and looking forward to warmer weather... My goal is longer rides more often with plenty of rest in between.

Good luck to all the newbies who stumble into this thread...
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Old 04-06-20, 10:43 AM
  #47  
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Hermès, your reply is probably the most informative answer I’ve ever read on Bike Forums.
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Old 04-07-20, 08:58 AM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by itsnevertoolate View Post
Was 202 lbs when I originally posted this... Now, 11 years later I'm 163 lbs... weight, IMHO, makes a difference, but not as much as riding as regularly as you can. I am recently retired and riding 4-5 times a week and looking forward to warmer weather... My goal is longer rides more often with plenty of rest in between.

Good luck to all the newbies who stumble into this thread...
Thanks for checking back in to BF and providing a positive update!
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Old 04-07-20, 12:31 PM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by robkyle View Post
Hermès, your reply is probably the most informative answer I’ve ever read on Bike Forums.
He knows a lot of stuff.
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Old 04-07-20, 12:54 PM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by big john View Post
He knows a lot of stuff.

Probably even more in the almost ten years since that post!
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