Adventure Cycling Association Forum

Bicycle Travel => General Discussion => Topic started by: icejan on May 10, 2009, 06:21:37 pm

 
Title: older riders
Post by: icejan on May 10, 2009, 06:21:37 pm
Hi, I'm new here, too.....want to connect with older people over 50-ish, talk about various riding places etc.  Never have done a tour, but someday would like to.....mostly ride around local recreational trails. 
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: johnsondasw on May 10, 2009, 08:06:24 pm
Well, I qualify--I'm 60 and still riding, despite 3 knee operations, and a pacemaker.  I love day rides and touring.  I've had to adjust my expectations some, as per miles per day and speed going uphill. I'm also realizing the importance of rest more now, too.

Welcome aboard!
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: trooper2899 on May 10, 2009, 08:16:35 pm
             Just joined today....I'll be 68 in November and ride just about every day.....I've ridden around NY City and crossed all their bridges (the Triboro when it was 96 degrees), I've ridden around Seattle and Portland and the Seattle area....never did a "tour"...done 2 centuries and probably will do one this Sept .....more people over 60 ought to try it, they'd be surprised how quickly they start to enjoy it. 
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: fredlonas on May 10, 2009, 08:57:26 pm

    I'm 69 and leaving next Sat. to ride the Northern tier to Astoria, Or. solo and self supported CELEBRATING MY 70TH BD in Dec. Have done 2 and 3 week tours in the New England states and into Quebec over the last 4 year's and will be thinking about my next 2 or 3 week tour soon and haven't even started my latest journey. Right now there is a man who just turned 82 the 24 of April and riding the Southern tier solo and is journaling on Crazyguy.

    DO NOT GO GENTLE INTO THE GOOD NIGHT
    OLD AGE SHOULD BURN AND RAVE AT THE CLOSE OF DAY
    RAGE, RAGE AGAINST THE DYING OF THE LIGHT.
    DYLAN THOMAS

    HAPPY TRAILS, FRED

   

    HAPPY TRAILS, FRED
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: scott.laughlin on May 10, 2009, 10:25:07 pm
I'm 71 and i still have three bikes.  I've toured quite a lot.  I still ride everyday, but I don't ride very fast anymore.

Scott in Texas 
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: johnsondasw on May 11, 2009, 10:12:59 pm
This thread would be a good place to discuss modifications we make as we get older.  I have to be sure the bike fit is accurate, unlike in the past when I didn't know there was any such thing as bike fit.  You just hopped on and rode!  I also ride a carbon bike and buy good shorts and try to be aware when my body feels like it needs a rest or an easy day.  I actually ride more miles/year than  I used to because my kids are grown and I have more time.  I'm slower now and don't race up the hills, but try to get in a steady, moderate pace and just keep at it.  And I sure like drafting, but then, I always did!     
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: DaveB on May 12, 2009, 12:47:16 pm
I'm 66 and also ride nearly every day, ice and snow permitting.  I've riden over 70 centuries (the last two were this past weekend on TOSRV).  I've also taken a bunch of week long suported tours and a couple of week long credit card tours. 

Age does have it's effects and there is no getting around it but you can slow the deterioration dramatically by keeping fit and riding as much as time permits.  I'm certainly not as fast as I was 20 years ago, and I wasn't that fast then, but I still can ride with and pass many, many riders significantly younger.

Keep riding.

 
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: cwd123 on May 12, 2009, 01:13:52 pm
Hi. I have never posted on this forum before but this thread hits home. I'm 62 years old and my passion is mountain biking. I also ride on the road to maintain fitness. Last year I build a Surly Long Haul Trucker touring bike with hopes to do a tour but haven't realized that dream yet. All my riding buddies are at least 20 years younger than I,so I have to work really hard to maintain the pace but ocassionally I still have my moments when I get in the "zone" and have an outstanding ride. It is theese times when I feel that I have turned back the clock at least for a day! I gotta go take a nap now..... riding an offroad time trial this evening...... need all the strength that I can muster.....maybe today's ride will be one of those magic moments!!!!!
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: RansRider61 on May 12, 2009, 09:37:41 pm
I qualify seeing as how I am 66 yrs. old . I rode over 3000 miles on my recumbent last year plus almost 2000 on my mountain bike . I still do many week long supported tours plus try get in a couple of self supported tours . Still do one MTB race each year called the Iceman cometh . My goal this year is to do 100 miles for each year of my life for a total of 6600 miles . 10 of us are doing a self supported tour of Door county this year which should be fun as most are near 60 or over . I got a scare 3 years ago when they had remove half of my colon and I swore then to enjoy the rest of my life .
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: Westinghouse on May 14, 2009, 05:28:41 am
I am 59. I am not cycling at all these days. I have pedaled a loaded touring bike about 34,000 miles(54,000 kilometers) through nineteen countries. My last lengthy tour was from east coastal Florida to El Paso, Texas in April and May of 2007. My strength has decreased over the years, of course, but I can usually get in 60-70 miles a day over moderate hills, sometimes less. I do intend to do at least one more transcontinental bicycle tour again some time, but I don't know when.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: whittierider on May 14, 2009, 04:11:27 pm
I'm 49 and just starting to get interested in fast, light, credit-card touring, where you use only a large seat bag and carry just enough to stay in hotels and eat in restaurants instead of camping.  I got Jandd Mountaineering's Mountain Wedge III seat bag which has almost two gallons' worth of room.  (There are seat bags with nearly four times that much, kind like having a small duffel bag back there!)  The idea is to stay light and aerodynamic so you can still go fast and burn up the road and have fun but don't need a support vehicle to do it for a ride of a few days.  My bike is set up like a time-trial bike, and I'm comfortable on it all day.

I've been considerably faster in recent years than at any previous time in my life, mostly from better knowledge of training and nutrition.  Last summer I climbed a local canyon faster than I ever have in my life, over 3mph faster than I could 25 years ago.  If it's any inspiration, French pro women's racer Jeannie Longo just won the Climber's Trophy at age 50, beating women who are easily young enough to be her daughters.  Here's a picture of her:

(http://img36.imageshack.us/img36/8880/2506200902gf.jpg)

John Sinibaldi, who was in the 1932 Olympics and died three years ago of cancer, went out on morning club rides with the fast group even when he was 90.  I understand that a large percentage of the people who do the long rides like Paris-Brest-Paris where you have 72 hours (total, not just riding time) to go about 750 miles started doing that in their 50's.  I remember trying to keep up with some men in their 70's when I was around 19, but they were too much for me.  I couldn't even draft them for very long.  I guess what I'm saying is don't let age make you feel handicapped.  What you lose more of as you age is not the sustained power, but the explosive sprint power which has very little application in touring.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: paddleboy17 on May 14, 2009, 05:57:28 pm
I am 51, and while whittierider's  words, give me comfort, I am not there yet.

Up until I turned 40, I used to be able to hang with the college kids and leave many of them doubled over and puking.  Since then, age has taunted me.  I have some knee pain that seems controllable as long as a pedal at a good cadence.   I had saddle issues that went away once I switched over to leather saddles.   I have recently had prostrate issues, but a leather saddle with a cut-out, and proper fit seems to be the answer to prostrate issues.

The biggest challenge seems to be keeping balance in my life.

I spent my 30's as a divorced guy, so there were many biking adventures.  I did some pretty cool stuff.  Toured Cape Breton and part of the Continental Divide.  Rode the length of the Keweenau Peninsula, and up one of Michigan's coasts and down the other.  Learned to Eskimo roll a kayak.  Stuff that none of my peers did.

I remarried at at 42, and lets just say that being married is time consuming.  My new bride knew about, but was not prepared for all the time spent paddling and pedaling.  In the end, I kept the wife, kept the bikes, and scaled back the boats.  Last year I sold my fancy British touring kayak to pay for my new custom touring bike.  My riding partners also married, and it seemed we spent a lot less time riding together.

When I entered the work force as a novice engineer in 1981, engineers were treated as a treasured resource.  This decade is lot more different.  We are up against the pressure to can us and ship the work to India.  We are up against the pressure to replace us with younger workers.  Never mind that I don't choke under pressure and the youngsters do.  I have a hard time finding enough time to ride like I used to.

The good news is that I picked up someone new to ride with.  In the beginning I mentored him along; now I relate to Victor Frakenstein.  If it is above 25F, John drags my sorry butt out for a ride.  You riders from Southern California or Florida probably have never ridden on iced road after dark, but this is how I spent my winter this year.  We will see if I can swing carbide tipped studded tires for next winter.

Also on the good new front is that riding is still the spiritual experience it always was.  I always return home with more than I left with.  I still tour, I just have to find something I can do in less than a week.  And I am still doing stuff that none of my peers do.

I guess that I hold out for my retirement years.  I have this expectation that I will have enough time then to ride all I want.  That I will have trained enough that I can ride like I did as 30-something.  That the absence of stress will make weight management easy like it used to be.

I am OK with slower acceleration--I just want to climb like a billy goat again.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: mucknort on May 14, 2009, 11:03:51 pm
Right now there is a man who just turned 82 the 24 of April and riding the Southern tier solo and is journaling on Crazyguy.
I've been following his inspiring journey:
http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/?o=3Tzut&doc_id=4767&v=4b

Fred, I wish you well on your trip! Are you gonna be posting on CrazyGuy as well?
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: johnsondasw on May 14, 2009, 11:58:17 pm
It is hard to find guys my age to ride with.  I have a few friends around my age (60) that I go with, but most of my riding is alone or with younger guys.  When I rode the Seattle to Portland 208 mile one day event, the sum of my 2 partners ages was my age.  I took my turns in the lead, too.   


I'm also very into rock climbing, and of the approximately 15 guys I meet up with regularly, only one is my  age.  That's OK, though.  In rockclimbing, I can keep up or even climb harder than a lot of the younger guys.  And then there are the others so out there I'm not even close, like my 27 year old kid.

It's all fun.  I just want to do my best to stay in shape and be out there doing it at whatever level works.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: icejan on May 16, 2009, 02:08:40 pm
Thanks to everyone who replied to my "older riders" post.  I know there are lots of over 50 and beyond out there.  Mostly men, though.  No offense....but where are the women????   I'm a female and have a husband that won't get out and ride, so I go alone.  Can't find other women in over 50 age group who want to ride for fitness and possibly plan some type of tour in the future.  I do, however, appreciate all the good words and encouragement.  I'm a wussy compared to those of you in your 70's and above, some even with challenging physical conditions, who don't let anything stop them.  I needed some of this type of role model to get myself out there.  icejan
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: johnsondasw on May 16, 2009, 10:40:59 pm
I'm not sure what your situation is, but most communities have a formal or informal riding group.  Just hook up with them and go for it.  Ask around at the local bike shop.  Often there ar e different levels offered for fast/medium/slow, etc.  I live in a very small rural town in the mountains and therefore am not able to do this.  However, Seattle is 85 miles away, and I can ride with the group there, or with friends I know who live there.

When the old man finds out you're out there riding with a social group, he may be tempted to try it out himself.  My wife did not ride until a few years ago, then decided to give it a try and really likes it when she has the time. 
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: scott.laughlin on May 17, 2009, 05:52:57 pm
I am 51, and while whittierider's  words, give me comfort, I am not there yet.

Up until I turned 40, I used to be able to hang with the college kids and leave many of them doubled over and puking.  Since then, age has taunted me.  I have some knee pain that seems controllable as long as a pedal at a good cadence.   I had saddle issues that went away once I switched over to leather saddles.   I have recently had prostrate issues, but a leather saddle with a cut-out, and proper fit seems to be the answer to prostrate issues.

The biggest challenge seems to be keeping balance in my life.

I spent my 30's as a divorced guy, so there were many biking adventures.  I did some pretty cool stuff.  Toured Cape Breton and part of the Continental Divide.  Rode the length of the Keweenau Peninsula, and up one of Michigan's coasts and down the other.  Learned to Eskimo roll a kayak.  Stuff that none of my peers did.

I remarried at at 42, and lets just say that being married is time consuming.  My new bride knew about, but was not prepared for all the time spent paddling and pedaling.  In the end, I kept the wife, kept the bikes, and scaled back the boats.  Last year I sold my fancy British touring kayak to pay for my new custom touring bike.  My riding partners also married, and it seemed we spent a lot less time riding together.

When I entered the work force as a novice engineer in 1981, engineers were treated as a treasured resource.  This decade is lot more different.  We are up against the pressure to can us and ship the work to India.  We are up against the pressure to replace us with younger workers.  Never mind that I don't choke under pressure and the youngsters do.  I have a hard time finding enough time to ride like I used to.

The good news is that I picked up someone new to ride with.  In the beginning I mentored him along; now I relate to Victor Frakenstein.  If it is above 25F, John drags my sorry butt out for a ride.  You riders from Southern California or Florida probably have never ridden on iced road after dark, but this is how I spent my winter this year.  We will see if I can swing carbide tipped studded tires for next winter.

Also on the good new front is that riding is still the spiritual experience it always was.  I always return home with more than I left with.  I still tour, I just have to find something I can do in less than a week.  And I am still doing stuff that none of my peers do.

I guess that I hold out for my retirement years.  I have this expectation that I will have enough time then to ride all I want.  That I will have trained enough that I can ride like I did as 30-something.  That the absence of stress will make weight management easy like it used to be.

I am OK with slower acceleration--I just want to climb like a billy goat again.

I don't know how close you are with your new bride, but have you considered renting a tandem and giving the long bike a whirl?  If you've not done this before be prepared to invest about 250 miles in this effort before becoming fully coordinated as a team.  Barb and I bought our first tandem nearly 20 years ago and we consider it the best investment we ever made.

Wherever your relationship is going it will arrive there much more quickly on a tandem.

Scott
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: whittierider on May 17, 2009, 06:39:17 pm
Quote
have you considered renting a tandem and giving the long bike a whirl?  If you've not done this before be prepared to invest about 250 miles in this effort before becoming fully coordinated as a team.
right.  Tandems are definitely not an instant-gratification thing.  After the first several rides on ours, I was ready to put it in a dumpster and write it off to experience.  In time though, we began to enjoy it a lot.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: DaveB on May 18, 2009, 08:36:33 am
Thanks to everyone who replied to my "older riders" post.  I know there are lots of over 50 and beyond out there.  Mostly men, though.  No offense....but where are the women????   I'm a female and have a husband that won't get out and ride, so I go alone.  Can't find other women in over 50 age group who want to ride for fitness and possibly plan some type of tour in the future. 
You don't say where you live but, is there a bike club in your area?  Most recreational and even racing clubs have many women members and joining one should put you in touch with other like-minded women.  Post an "ISO" (in search of") notice in the club's newsletter or web site. 
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: paddleboy17 on May 18, 2009, 01:18:02 pm
I don't know how close you are with your new bride, but have you considered renting a tandem and giving the long bike a whirl?  If you've not done this before be prepared to invest about 250 miles in this effort before becoming fully coordinated as a team.  Barb and I bought our first tandem nearly 20 years ago and we consider it the best investment we ever made.

Wherever your relationship is going it will arrive there much more quickly on a tandem.

Scott
My point, which clearly I did not make well, is how hard it is to have a balanced life.
 :)
My wife Lynn, will be touched that you all think of here as a new bride.  We will celebrate our 9th anniversary this summer.

I will agree about the importance of shared activities for a happy marraige.  I alluded that I scaled back on my boat collection.  I went from 6 kayaks down to 3 kayaks, keeping two matched recreational singles and a recreational tandem.  Lynn does not really like to pedal, but she does like to paddle.  So we paddle in the tandem kayak.  There are similarities with the tandem bicycle experience:  the importance of being a team, and where ever you go--you get there together.

I have thought about a tandem bicycle.  We are a blended family of 6, and 4 out of 4 kids are in college right now.  This brings us back to that balance thing again.  A Santana or Burley tandem is not in my budget any time soon, but I would love to have one.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: scott.laughlin on May 19, 2009, 10:26:26 am
You see the big picture.  Press on.

Scott
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: BikingViking on May 19, 2009, 06:53:31 pm
I am 55 and have been touring every summer for the past 5 years with my wife, also 55. (Boy alot of 5's) We take a month long vacation every summer, that work thing gets in the way, and tour different locations. We have done the Norther Tier from Sandpoint Id to eastern North Dakota, another year we did a 1000 mile loop of Northern Minnesota. We have also done some more local door to door tours within the state of Oregon. This year we are planning on the Oregon coast to the Redowoods then to Crater Lake, over the McKenzie pass and then back up the Willamette bikeway. We go fully self supported and rarely eat in a cafe. Camp cooking is half the fun. We have stayed in a motel only 6 times in 5 tours. When we retire we plan on doing the "Wind In Your Back Tour". Basically going whichever way the wind is blowing and see where we end up.
Ride On
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: scott.laughlin on May 20, 2009, 03:11:24 pm
My wife and stopped our pickup camper and gave shelter to a middle-aged tandem couple in Utah a few years back.  They'd been caught in a downpour.  They were visiting all the Utah counties on their tandem.  There was just room for the four of us.  Barb brewed a pot of coffee and we shot the breeze until the rain had passed. 

What a great experience. 

Scott
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: Sailor John on May 21, 2009, 10:08:14 pm
I'm there, will turn 60 in August, will celebrate with my first self supported tour in New Mexico in late September, keep riding, it's always a beautiful day for a bike ride.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: DaveB on May 23, 2009, 07:51:11 pm
Quote
I am 55 and have been touring every summer for the past 5 years with my wife, also 55. (Boy alot of 5's) We take a month long vacation every summer, .....

Do you have any idea how lucky you are and how unusual your situation is? 
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: gamcgregor on May 23, 2009, 08:45:07 pm
Good for you, keep going. I started biking at 50 now 56. Its just as hard to find someone to bike with in my little corner of the world. Port Huron, MI.
I try to get to Fla as much as possible, but jobs make that hard. Belong to a great club down there in North Port. Would love to meet some folks my age or at least close who also would possibly like to go on what would be my first tour some day. Male and/or female. Any way Happy riding.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: jgdavis2@cfl.rr.com on May 24, 2009, 07:49:39 pm
Testing.  I wrote a nice long note of encouragement and advice and it fail to process.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: icejan on June 04, 2009, 09:58:14 am
I'm not sure what your situation is, but most communities have a formal or informal riding group.  Just hook up with them and go for it.  Ask around at the local bike shop.  Often there ar e different levels offered for fast/medium/slow, etc.  I live in a very small rural town in the mountains and therefore am not able to do this.  However, Seattle is 85 miles away, and I can ride with the group there, or with friends I know who live there.

When the old man finds out you're out there riding with a social group, he may be tempted to try it out himself.  My wife did not ride until a few years ago, then decided to give it a try and really likes it when she has the time. 
    The bicycle clubs in my area seem to all be pretty fast road riding groups, but I never thought of posting a specific ISO for women my age and speed, to ride with.  I'm a little too slow for even the slow riders in these clubs, but I could probaly get up to speed if I practiced.  also, I will search some more for more of a social riders group.  You'r right, that might light a little fire under the old man and get him out there more.  Right now he only goes with me about 3 times a year, and that's not enough for me to build up speed and strength, so i need to find other riders.  Don't mind going alone sometimes, but it can get boring, especially cause I like to stop for lunch and stuff.  bye and thanks for the good words. 
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: paddleboy17 on June 04, 2009, 12:07:49 pm
Good for you, keep going. I started biking at 50 now 56. Its just as hard to find someone to bike with in my little corner of the world. Port Huron, MI.
I try to get to Fla as much as possible, but jobs make that hard. Belong to a great club down there in North Port. Would love to meet some folks my age or at least close who also would possibly like to go on what would be my first tour some day. Male and/or female. Any way Happy riding.

I used to live in Shelby TWP, but now I live in Northville.  If memory serves me right, both the Slow Spokes and the Clinton River Riders run an annual ride out your way.  You might check with them. Maybe they run weekly rides as well.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: scott.laughlin on June 20, 2009, 05:45:19 pm
I'm there, will turn 60 in August, will celebrate with my first self supported tour in New Mexico in late September, keep riding, it's always a beautiful day for a bike ride.

What part(s) of New Mexico do you touring?  We own some undeveloped property a half-dozen miles northwest of Pie Town, within a stone's throw (literally) of the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route.  It's a diverse state.

Scott
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: Cycnus on June 21, 2009, 07:18:03 pm
IceJan -

I am 53, female, and taking on the biking world as we speak.  I gave up everything I own but a bike, a trailer, and camping gear to start out living on the land and seeing as much of the world as I can.  My family thinks I am out of my mind... I just think I need to do more training rides.   :)  Drop a note if you would like to chat more. 
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: scott.laughlin on June 22, 2009, 03:13:40 pm
IceJan,

Tell your family I can't think of a more noble cause than cycling toward the distant horizon.   Willie suggests keeping your journal in letter form.  Scribble your events of the day on notebook paper and at the end of the week mail the finished sheets home to Aunt Martha, or whomever will hold them for you.

Keep us informed.

Scott
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: Westinghouse on June 23, 2009, 01:07:26 pm
I am 59. At the moment I am considering the possibility of cycling the Atlantic coast this summer, say from south Florida to Maine. Not definite yet, but it's a big maybe. I definitely need the exercise. I have been teaching the past seven months. The one thing I regret as I get ready to take vacation
is not joining a gym and working out regularly. Oh well, there is always after summer to stick to a regimen.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: justbarb on July 27, 2009, 09:37:51 am
I am 60 and picking up my Raleigh Sojourn this week.  Hubby backpacks but doesn't enjoy riding long distances, so I will go alone.  I bought the Sojourn because of its low gearing and ready to travel set up.  (Also, there were no Surly LHTs to try out.)  My LBS showed me the thickness of the spokes, which compensates for the number.  He also has made adjustments with the stem so that the reach is proper for me.  A front rack, center kickstand, and swapping the men's for a woman's B-17...can't wait to go for my first ride!     
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: litespeed on August 01, 2009, 08:44:05 pm
I'm 68 and will admit to some loss of strength. I don't crank out the 100+ mile days while touring as often as I used to. Maybe it's just as well. I should smell the roses more.

I have discovered that I need more liquids with the passing years to avoid cramps and heart arrhythmia. On my first day out last year I cramped up for the first time ever. Not in shape. I knocked on a door and drank about five water bottles from a guy's tap and was able to continue all right. I also got some heart arrhythmia at night in Texas that required lots of liquid to stop.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: bigstrongmary on August 07, 2009, 09:12:47 pm
Hi, I'm new here, too.....want to connect with older people over 50-ish, talk about various riding places etc.  Never have done a tour, but someday would like to.....mostly ride around local recreational trails. 
I am a female rider as well.  I agree that there seems to be an abundance of male riders out there, but few women...I just turned 57 and have been riding since I was about 30.  I've done multiple centuries and supported cross state rides, but never a tour, although I've always wanted to do one.  I ride about 8000 miles a year all year long...and I live just outside Cleveland! 
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: tonythomson on August 08, 2009, 07:28:49 am
Hi another wrinkly here - nothing better than setting out in the morning - no idea where you will end up that night or who you will meet.  How exciting is that. No phones or work I'm doing more touring than ever.  Next is Orlando to Vancouver - unsupported and on my own. Anyone think I'm going to swap this for a pair of slippers and the TV, no chance.

However, have to admit to not going so fast or far on a daily basis.  And staying in better hotels/motels. So what's wrong with a bit of comfort? 

Good to see there is so many of us out there still trucking. (That shows my age)
Tony
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: staehpj1 on August 08, 2009, 09:14:06 am
I started touring at 55 with a coast to coast ride.  I am now 58 and expect to do longish tours for a many years to come. My preference would be to take 6-12 weeks at a time and be home a while before heading out again.  It would be nice to be able to keep working but be able to take a long trip (2-3 months) once a year or so and maybe some short ones (two weeks or so) in between.  If I can't work out a schedule that is flexible enough to do that I plan to retire in 4 years.  Some of my future trips may be backpacking or motorcycle touring but bike touring is usually my first choice.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: johnsondasw on August 09, 2009, 02:30:03 pm
Biking, hiking, climbing--for some reason, it seems to keep getting better despite "advancing" age.  I'm almost 61 now and trips are more relaxed and enjoyable than ever.  there's really  nothing to prove, and I can just go out and have a great time.  Also, it's nice to have sufficient funds to be able to buy the proper gear and to be able to stay in motels when you want.  However, many of the adventures have to be done solo now or with partners half my age.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: justbarb on August 10, 2009, 04:44:11 pm
I live just north of Cincinnati...so let's see if we can get in a short tour this fall.  I can only go for shorter tours, due to my work schedule.  But a tour is a tour is a tour...yes?
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: RansRider61 on August 10, 2009, 06:08:30 pm
We just got done touring Door County fully packed down . The oldest was 73 and the youngster was 53 with five 59 and one 66 years old and we all got along great during the 300 miles . It is fun to slow down and smell the roses .
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: GeorgeC on August 17, 2009, 05:19:53 pm
Hello to all you "mature" riders in this thread.

I'm 71, live in Columbus, Oh; have done 14 week long supported rides around the state over the years and now am ready to try touring self contained. In July, I rode the Across Ohio Bicycle Adventure (XOBA) and talked to so many people who have toured self contained that I am really excited to give it a try.

I hope to start by doing a couple days riding up the UGRR since I can be on the route riding out of my garage. Then I would like to follow that up with 4 or 5 days riding the Northern Tier west from Vermilion to Indiana and back in September.

I'm not fast on organized day rides but am seldom the last rider returning to the parking lot since like the Energizer Bunny, I just keep going.

I think it would be great to chat with other riders in the area about issues related to touring.

GeorgeC
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: JHamelman on August 18, 2009, 08:07:36 am
Hi George,

You might also want to post a query in the Regional Discussion area for the Great Lakes to connect with people in your area:

http://www.adventurecycling.org/forums/index.php?board=16.0 (http://www.adventurecycling.org/forums/index.php?board=16.0)

Have fun!

.Jennifer.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: jacko999 on August 19, 2009, 04:56:15 am
im 54 looking someone in southe east england to ride with :)
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: tonythomson on August 19, 2009, 01:18:27 pm
Hi Jack, over in Southampton, too far away?  or are you meaning to cycle over in the USA?  up for both!
Tony www.bike4gus.com
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: mikedirectory2 on August 19, 2009, 01:48:13 pm
I just want to say that you are all an inspiration.  I hope that I can continue riding for the rest of my life!
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: MTNGator on August 19, 2009, 06:45:58 pm
I'm a 59-year old, this is my first post on this forum, cancer survivor who has always dreamed of the long tour but put it off for career, family and other obligations. Well the bucket list demands more than dreaming so I'm doing the "state ride" next year on my Cannondale T2000 and then who knows???

I can attest to some of the other issues raised here - especially the "bike fit" comment. My 1987 Cannondale fit great "out-of-the-box" but the same size frame in 2005 has been a disappointment. A lot of stems and seat posts have not yet produced the perfect fit but I'm still working on it.

Nice to be here on the forum and looking at the grass from the green side. Ed
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: justbarb on August 21, 2009, 07:48:51 pm
What a joy to read about older riders and their experiences!  And I see that a few of you may have been able to get together for some tours...wonderful!  I am about to go on my first "official" tour, as my Raleigh Sojourn now has a front rack, a tent and other camping equipment has been purchased, and the work calendar may free me for a few days.  Let's continue to inspire each other with our experiences!
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: mainebiker on August 26, 2009, 03:22:38 pm
I am 68 and started riding and wrenching in 2004 to help me beat cancer. Have been cancer free since I started riding--so I better not stop. I ride every day and use the touring bike I built up from a frameset to run errands, shop, etc. I also have three road bikes. My wife and I are currently caring for her 86 year old father---so getting away to go touring is out for the time being. To keep my mind off caregiving, I started a bike repair shop. I have almost every Park Tool in the catalog. People here donate unwanted bikes and I restore them and give them to the Y. They always seem to find a person who can use a bike. I have done 30 bikes in the past two years. Am now working on two 3 speeds--a Raleigh and a Free Spirit. Finding people my age to ride with is hard. We have a bicycle club here that I belong to, but can`t do their rides--they run pacelines and average 18 to 20. They are also in their 30`s and 40`s.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: scott.laughlin on August 27, 2009, 11:09:14 am
I am 68 and started riding and wrenching in 2004 to help me beat cancer. Have been cancer free since I started riding--so I better not stop. I ride every day and use the touring bike I built up from a frameset to run errands, shop, etc. I also have three road bikes. My wife and I are currently caring for her 86 year old father---so getting away to go touring is out for the time being. To keep my mind off caregiving, I started a bike repair shop. I have almost every Park Tool in the catalog. People here donate unwanted bikes and I restore them and give them to the Y. They always seem to find a person who can use a bike. I have done 30 bikes in the past two years. Am now working on two 3 speeds--a Raleigh and a Free Spirit. Finding people my age to ride with is hard. We have a bicycle club here that I belong to, but can`t do their rides--they run pacelines and average 18 to 20. They are also in their 30`s and 40`s.
==================
I'm 72 and I ride nearly every day.  It's what keeps me going.  At our age it is difficult to find folks with whom to ride.  But I'm satisfied to go it alone.  I remember a group of club riders passing me by one morning.  I overheard one say, "Why's he going so slow?"  If I could have caught up to him I would have suggested he wait another 50 years then ask that question again  :-)
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: conifir on August 27, 2009, 03:14:37 pm
i will be 60 in this coming winter
when i was younger i lived on my road racing swiss made 10 speed....
it was a gas....
going as fast as you could....
took a few tumbles....
back in the fall of 2002 i bought a trek full suspension mtb
i wanted a full suspension for the comfort....
you know the drill ....all of the little aches and pains
after fussing around with the bike since then...
going on daily rides...
smelling the fresh air....
watching the asphalt or dirt wizz bye
sweating up a storm
feeling good..
i started looking into ultra-lite bicycle equipment
such as frame bags
handlebar harness , etc...
so after a couple of hundred smackers
i had a complete ultra-lite set up custom made for my trek fuel
now i have this dream
of hitting the open road
my total weight that i will be carrying is 35 lbs
i will be totally self supported..
i had my bags made by this guy out of alaska   www.epicdesignsalaska.com
check out his equipment that he makes...
be safe
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: johnsondasw on August 31, 2009, 12:06:12 pm
Probably my main piece of advise for us older riders is to mix it up.  It's important to have other athletic interests.  I use hiking, weights, and rock climbing in addition to road biking.  If I get too obsessed with any one of these, I start to hurt.  Changing activities is a good way to take a "rest" day, although there are times I take a real rest day, too.  I have friends my age (almost 61) who are interested in only one activity, and they seem to be dealing with an injury most of the time.  A regular stretching routine also makes me feel better.

It is especially dangerous for an older person who has not been active at all, and suddenly decides to "get in shape", so he/she abruptly jumps in with an intense schedule of biking or any other active sport.  That's an injury waiting to happen.  Even though I had been very active my whole life, I found this out when I started a new sport, technical rock climbing, at age 45.  Within about a year, I got shoulder tendinitis that took 8 months to heal, and then only with the help of a cortisone shot.  In the winter, that shoulder still stiffens up, and it appears I'll be dealing with it for life.     

There are books out there for older athletes that are worth reading.  I've found a few.  "Cycling Past 50" has important info, and I'm sure there are others.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: justbarb on August 31, 2009, 07:43:11 pm
I agree with "mixing it up," and walk as much as possible and swim laps.  Our gov't has a free publication titled "Exercise: A Guide from the National Institute on Aging."  Go to www.nia.nih.gov to get one.  And I want to continue the main topic of older riders, as that is this thread's topic.  I am just about to take off on my first solo trip...nothing big, just a few days...but I am very excited to do something that I have dreamed about for so long.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: johnsondasw on August 31, 2009, 08:14:46 pm
Go for it!  "Just a few days"  can be a great adventure in itself and the inspiration for longer trips to come.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: tonythomson on September 01, 2009, 02:50:48 pm
Hi justbarb let us know how you get on.  Bet you have a great time and it is just as exciting heading out on a new trip regardless as to how many times you have done it before.  I have done several long hauls before but still get unbearable excited plus quite a bit of anxiety mixed in like "can I do this".  But just heading out that first morning there is no other feeling quite like it.

I'm sure I'm not the only who feels like this - am I?
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: johnsondasw on September 01, 2009, 11:31:46 pm
I think most of us feel that way.  That's why we're on this forum.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: longjohn on September 04, 2009, 05:52:20 am
When they first opened the trail all the way through from Washinton DC to Pittsburgh I had to do it.  I remember those feelings of "Can I do this?" as I was riding the train to Washington.  It was an exciting feeling, knowing when I got off the train and put my bike back together I was on my own for 350 miles.  I had to be back at work in six days.  On the train ride to Washington I met a group of riders that had just completed the ride and they took eight days to do it.  It gave me an uneasy feeling knowing I had to complete it in two days shorter time than they did.  My first day I rode hard all day and put in enough miles to know I could do it.  The rest of the ride I took my time and finished in five days. I was 57 years old when I made that ride.  It's a good feeling to know what you are able to do. :D
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: GeorgeC on September 05, 2009, 06:18:05 pm
I just wanted to add to a previous post I made on this topic.

I just got home from a three day "short" tour, one day of which was on the UGRR. This was my first fully loaded ride and it took a few miles to become comfortable with the way the bike handled, but after that the rest of the ride was a wonderful experience.

All the months of looking at the pictures in the Adventure Cyclist magazine, reading about other peoples experiences, and dreaming about what it would be like and now I have experienced the thrill of being on the road for myself. It almost makes you feel like a kid again and that is worth a million bucks right there.

71 is not too late to start, but oh how I wish I had tried this 20 years ago.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: justbarb on September 06, 2009, 05:34:37 pm
Congratulations, George!  Your first tour must have been a blast.  Seems to me that your first tour was at the "right" age, since it's the age you are.  I can relate to "feel like a child again", as I almost feel giddy while complete the preparation to set out on the 15th.

What part of the UGGR did you do? Any problems?  Thanks for inspiring the rest of us!

Title: Re: older riders
Post by: GeorgeC on September 10, 2009, 12:28:15 pm
Congratulations, George!  Your first tour must have been a blast.  Seems to me that your first tour was at the "right" age, since it's the age you are.  I can relate to "feel like a child again", as I almost feel giddy while complete the preparation to set out on the 15th.

What part of the UGGR did you do? Any problems?  Thanks for inspiring the rest of us!



I live in the north end of Columbus and only 1.6 miles from a bike path that will take me 14 miles north without any road riding. From there I rode on local roads to Delaware and then to the state park campgrounds for a total of 40 miles on Thursday. Friday, I rode back to Delaware and followed the UGRR route to Fredericktown and on to the Kokosing Camp for 50+ miles. Saturday, I rode back home on the UGRR to Kilbourne and then local roads the rest of the way for a total of 56+ miles. Problems? None. It was a great time and a great experience.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: justbarb on September 18, 2009, 10:37:50 am
First official bike journey was a great success!  Since I am older and, thanks be to God, wiser, I shortened my intended mileage by about 18 or so miles.  I had enough to process:  riding with the bike loaded, new places to discover, setting up camp, etc.  33 miles was just right, as I had energy for the next day.  That, also, went very well.  Several people stopped to ask me questions, as I was the only one around who was traveling by bike, and I hope those who said they wanted to do bike traveling will do so.  Thanks to all of you for your support.  I am now plotting when and where to go next...and for at least five days.  Tailwinds to all!
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: tonythomson on September 18, 2009, 11:09:44 am
Hey Barb, congrats - great fun eh?
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: staehpj1 on September 18, 2009, 11:35:36 am
Thanks for sharing.  I'm glad you had fun.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: johnsondasw on September 24, 2009, 11:32:39 pm
  Several people stopped to ask me questions, as I was the only one around who was traveling by bike, and I hope those who said they wanted to do bike traveling will do so. 

It's always been amazing to me how many people are fascinated by bike tourers.  They want to know all about you, your route, bike, etc.  I've even had people ask me how I get up the big hills!  One of the most common laments I've heard is that "Well, I wish I had done that when I was younger, because I'm too old now."  Most of the guys saying this are in about their 40s. 
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: justbarb on September 25, 2009, 10:32:51 am
I'm amazed, too, and have learned to not answer questions specifically.  When asked where I'm coming from and going to, I respond, "Oh north and south and wherever."  I also never tell people where I am camping.  We older females need to be very careful about revealing information.  Guess that's true for most people these days.  <sigh!>  I also limit my time in conversation when on the route, as lots of time can be consumed and my muscles get too cool.  In camp is another story.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: cycledancer on October 03, 2009, 01:02:11 pm
Thanks to everyone who replied to my "older riders" post.  I know there are lots of over 50 and beyond out there.  Mostly men, though.  No offense....but where are the women????   I'm a female and have a husband that won't get out and ride, so I go alone.  Can't find other women in over 50 age group who want to ride for fitness and possibly plan some type of tour in the future.  I do, however, appreciate all the good words and encouragement.  I'm a wussy compared to those of you in your 70's and above, some even with challenging physical conditions, who don't let anything stop them.  I needed some of this type of role model to get myself out there.  icejan
Just to encourage you, let me say, I turned 61 yesterday, and biking (and dancing) is my great love. I rode weeklong Cycle Oregon last fall: biggest day was 84 mi and 7000 ft elevation gain! Was I proud! and tired! Rode a metric century last weekend, and another 30 mi the next day, considering a Southern Tier crossing (supported) for next spring. For me, 50-60 mi feels like a good day's cycling.
I love to walk and hike, but feel much creakier after a day of them than after a bike day. As for friends to ride with, I've found some here in Seattle, but also, when you bike here, you're never alone; lots of cyclists, and if you stop even to read a map, somebody always comes along to make sure you're okay.
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: bevbiker on October 05, 2009, 01:36:41 pm
I'm a 76 yr old woman -- plan to ride the Lewis &
Clark trail this summer.  Did the Southern Tier with WomanTours starting on my 70th birthday & the east coast with America by Bicycle at 73.  Not as fast as I was in my 50s but sagged less than 1/2 day on each of the above tours.  And I ride a Bike Friday.  Maybe @ 80 or so I'll try a recumbent.
bevbiker@gmail.com
Title: Re: older riders
Post by: justbarb on October 05, 2009, 08:34:20 pm
Bevbiker -  You are my kinda woman!  What have you found to be the biggest thrills and obstacles with your touring?  What words of wisdom do you have to pass on to those of us who aspire to bike as you have?  Barb