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  1. #1
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    what's happening to me ?? ( fear of riding)

    Exactly a year ago this day I've resumed my riding season, it's been like that for the past 9 years. Due to a very busy summer job I usually stop riding around mid may and resume early september. But this year I won't. I don't know what's going on with me but I have a bad feeling about riding. I constantly see myself hit by a car,even if we have virtually no traffic here in winter. I mean,it's something I keep visualizing. Am I getting old ( 44) while my son is growing up ( 2 in 2 weeks ) and it's just preservation instinct kicking in ? Am I too tired due to this summer job ? I've lost about 4 kilos walking between 10kms to 20kms a day every single day at work,very exhausting. But again,I feel like I want to feel safe at home and be there for the loved ones. Ever been through something like this ? It kills me, I have a brand new bike collecting dust since may..
    Last edited by Devastazione; 09-04-2017 at 12:28 PM.

  2. #2
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    Riding is dangerous. Driving is dangerous. LIFE is dangerous. You have mounting responsibilities and your mid forties is usually where people begin to recognize and cope with mortality in a different way. What you are feeling is normal and how we all deal with it is as individual as our fingerprints. If walking is enough for you and you are happy, sell the bike and move forward. If not riding it is effecting your happiness, perhaps consider talking with someone, maybe a professional, about your feelings.

    More than anything, know that there is nothing wrong with you and actually is quite normal. Best of luck.

  3. #3
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    mid life crisis.

  4. #4
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    Life happens and we only have so much control. I know the feeling as I'm 44 and my youngest of 3 just turned 6.

    Live life to the fullest. Get comfortable with that responsibility and to get life.

  5. #5
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    I had a similar phobia (for lack of a better word) for a few years after I wrecked myself hard on a skateboard. I couldn't skate or bike without fear of wiping out again, and even new things like running caused anxiety.

    Someone here recommended a sports psychologist. While I didn't specifically seek a sports psychologist, I did wind up seeking a general therapist who worked with me through some of those fears (among many other things). The only thing holding me back now is that I get bored of pedalling after an hour or so.
    I lost my phone number. Can I have yours?

  6. #6
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    I gave up caring about if I died suddenly. Helped me get through flight training, in my 40s. Will be nice to live to 80, but I mean it is not a tragedy if I am suddenly disappeared into the nothingness of death. I wont know it and yet have lived a great life so far too.

    I worry more about cars backing into me in parking lots while walking to the stores. Becoming disabled in the legs would not be fun to deal with.

  7. #7
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    You just have to decide how important it is to you to ride the bike. If you truly want to ride, you just have to get on the bike and ride through your fears. But you can also just put the bike out of your mind and spend your free time with your family.

    If you don't ride you can sell your bikes, or let them get dusty for future use if you decide. Life got in the way of my riding many years ago, and the bikes just hung on their hooks, for maybe ten years, getting dusty. When the time was right for me to ride again all I had to do was give everything a good going over, mount some new tires, and ride. Since getting back on the bikes I'm riding more than before I stopped.

    I'm sorry that I wasn't riding all those years, but I'm happy that I kept the bikes.
    Too old to ride plastic

  8. #8
    Fecal indicator
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    in 50 years, been hit four times...none were my fault.

    each incident has made me become more aware and assertive about establishing my position in the lane.

    the latest one was the most traumatic...a hit/run with multiple serious injuries. the first few hundred miles back on the bike left me with a serious case of paranoia, every car approaching from the rear felt like it was going to take me out...but, that sensation gradually diminished.

    you either live with the risks or find an activity that is less stressful.
    the 45th POTUS is inept, corrupt, and a pathological liar. and those may be his better qualities...

  9. #9
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    Riding on public roads is dangerous and I sympathize. I rode for 13 years on Toronto streets both for daily commuting downtown and recreationally. Hardly a day went by when I didn't say a little thankyou that I'd avoided the call upstairs. Ironically both my most serious accidents were on the trail.

    You don't say anything about the roads you have available and what the local drivers are like, but if it causes too much anxiety I'd say just forget it for a while. There are more important things in life.
    We just don’t realize the most significant moments of our lives when they’re happening
    Back then I thought “well there'll be other days”
    I didn’t realize that was the only day
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y9yrupye7B0

    There's sometimes a buggy.
    How many drivers does a buggy have?
    One.
    So let's just say I'm drivin' this buggy...
    and if you fix your attitude you can ride along with me.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GekiIMh4ZkM

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by BCSaltchucker View Post
    I gave up caring about if I died suddenly. Helped me get through flight training, in my 40s. Will be nice to live to 80, but I mean it is not a tragedy if I am suddenly disappeared into the nothingness of death. I wont know it and yet have lived a great life so far too.
    Wearing clean underwear everyday is important. You can't change it once you die and think of the coroners and even family members finding out what it looks like.

  11. #11
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    Nobody can answer that. You just need to ride and get over it. if the fear so sever that it is debilitating, see a therapist.

    Last Christmas I fell on black ice, i was out of commission for a good few weeks. it was weird getting back on the bike. i was certainly nervous and imagined ice even if the road was only wet, i rode slower, and eventually got my confidence back. you either face your fears or let your fears take over. everyone gets scared, what differs is how you respond to that fear.

  12. #12
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    I have a 5 year old (I'm 45) and have the same concerns but riding helps me in so many ways. I don't think I'd be as good of a father without having that release plus the health benefits. We must live life. Sitting on the couch has its own risks.
    2012 Motobecane Le Champion Team Titanium
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    2000 Specialized Allez Elite

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by factory feel View Post
    mid life crisis.
    So sell the bikes and buy a Corvette?

    I'm in my late 40s, took way too long to latch onto this activity, so now I do it as often as I can. I've had two pretty serious accidents, neither my fault. I have two disabled children in their teens, my life insurance is paid, and my wife is a looker, so I ride knowing they'll all be (mostly) ok if something should happen. That said, as mentioned earlier, debilitating injury is a bigger fear for me than actually getting killed-ed.

    Ride often. Or don't. Either way, make sure it's what you WANT.

  14. #14
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    Why don't you try some off road riding? Mtb, gravel, cyclocross, etc. There are a lot of options out there that allow you to avoid cars and traffic. I can understand your concern. I am definitely feeling less safe out there these days, but I won't give up yet. I do my best to avoid heavy traffic areas. Be safe and good luck what ever you choose.

  15. #15
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    One thing is certain. The longer you stay off the bike, the worse the fear will become.

  16. #16
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    This degree of concern is more appropriate for someone riding a motorcycle or handling rattlesnakes for a living. By and large, cycling is a very safe activity when the proper precautions are taken. And this is coming from a physician who has never been a risk-taker, even before getting married and becoming a father.

    That being said, I don't think it's unreasonable to cater to your fears to at least some extent. You could always limit your rides to times when fewer drivers are out, and roads that are less frequently used by cars. Similarly, you can limit your speed and can thus ride in a more upright position that gives you better control of your bike. I practically never put my hands in my drops unless I am on the straightest of paths because I know that more of my weight is leaning forward and over the front wheel - a more dangerous situation should a fall occur.

    Needless to say, a helmet is an absolute must. When I was young and stupid (and didn't recognize the risk of doing so), my road riding was always done without a helmet. Today, I won't put my leg over a bike without one.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Devastazione View Post
    I constantly see myself hit by a car,even if we have virtually no traffic here in winter. I mean,it's something I keep visualizing.
    1. smoke pot.
    2. see a therapist.
    Yossarian: don't worry. nothing's going to happen to you that won't happen to the rest of us.

  18. #18
    I make Eagles fly
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    Get a MTB

  19. #19
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    guess i've been ucky. Been riding since 1974ish, maybe 3000km a yr. Can only recall two crashes on road bikes in that 43 year span. Once in 75 or 77 when I was a 7 or 9 yr old kid touring with 30lbs of bags on the bikes in a rainstorm in scotland. slipped on a descent and chipped a tooth. 2nd time was in 93 in a road race pileup which happened right in front of me. That's it. twice. a chipped tooth and a couple scratches. first 20 years no helmet. Never hit by a car.

    on MTB have only crashed about 35 times, LOL and a couple concussions, though only maybe 2 crashes in past 5 years. It depends on the techiness of the chosen trails though, and requires a lot more skill than a road bike

    the motorbikes make me nervous. I bought a nice 600cc superbike a couple years ago. but the thing scares me even though I know how to ride expertly (also have never crashed or dropped a motorcycle in 30 years riding, and 8 motorbikes owned). Feel much safer on a bicycle. Sold the superbike, but still have a motoscooter

  20. #20
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    I believe we all get the jitters from time to time but we get over it. Recently I got the jitters from being brushed by the back tires of a 40ft trailer traveling at light speed, f--- a-- hole. I thought about quitting, buying cameras, more insurance and a gun but given the choice to ride or not, I choose to ride. The personal rewards I get from riding are huge, mentally and physically. All we can do is to control our actions, where we ride and reduce our risks by riding defensibly and try not to do anything stupid. This should include making sure your dependents have the means to survive if the worst happens. (No, I don’t sell insurance) Be safe and have fun!!!

  21. #21
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    What? Me worry??......
    If you live in fear of riding, just take up bowling. On the other hand, get a huge life insurance policy so when you get squished, they'll be sitting pretty.
    If your opinion differs from mine, ..........Too bad.
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    How would you like it if Hitler killed you
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    I>U

    Buying parts to hang on your bike is always easier than getting fit.

    If you feel wimpy and weak, get out and train more, ya wee lassie!

    If Jesus had a gun, he'd be alive today!

  22. #22
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    I see the danger as a feature. It's just part of riding, and adds a special risk factor.
    Waxahachie, Texas
    Biciclette Gios

    "Forget it, Jake. It's Chinatown."

  23. #23
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    I mean...can you belive this sh.t ?? A motorcycle accident in front of the office today,the guy has been T boned by a douche german tourist and died in front of me and my coworkers . Few minutes before that I've bought a cycling jersey online. Just what I needed...
    Well,since I wont' get much sleep tonight looks like I'll spend some time in the garage getting the bike ready..
    Last edited by Devastazione; 09-05-2017 at 09:32 AM.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by burgrat View Post
    Why don't you try some off road riding? Mtb, gravel, cyclocross, etc. There are a lot of options out there that allow you to avoid cars and traffic. I can understand your concern. I am definitely feeling less safe out there these days, but I won't give up yet. I do my best to avoid heavy traffic areas. Be safe and good luck what ever you choose.
    I think this is good advice. Ease back into it with some trail riding. Try to get out on the road, little by little. Take some practical precautions like a rear blinky light and hi-vis clothing. Don't give up otherwise your current heightened level of fear/anxiety will continue to grow

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    This degree of concern is more appropriate for someone riding a motorcycle or handling rattlesnakes for a living. By and large, cycling is a very safe activity when the proper precautions are taken.
    Bingo. Using NHTSA data (USA), the calculation is that driving has 2X the fatality rate per hour compared to cycling. Yes, you cover more miles in that hour, but many people spend more hours per week in their cars than on their bikes. The number for motorcycling is 8X. And note that around half of bicycling fatalities are either at night or with a DUI cyclist. The numbers for experienced road cyclists are extremely low (lightning strikes, anyone?).

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