Middle Age and not so sure...
Results 1 to 14 of 14
  1. #1
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Posts
    11

    Middle Age and not so sure...

    I'm middle aged in 50's. And once upon a time I ran 7 miles a day like clock work. Now, I'm out of shape, feel it and know it!

    I just purchased my first road bike a Specialized Roubaix Expert. My helmet I should have next week to start riding.

    I was wondering if anyone here was my age or older and how many miles would you recommend riding per day to start out? My mind tells me I can do anything but my body tells me different. I've got a gut, legs are in good shape but endurance is in question.

    Any advice would be much appreciated. I can't wait to get back into shape again. Sucks feeling like crap all the time! Glad I found this forum it might be a life saver...


  2. #2
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: Srode's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    3,283
    Quote Originally Posted by calidreaming View Post
    I'm middle aged in 50's. And once upon a time I ran 7 miles a day like clock work. Now, I'm out of shape, feel it and know it!

    I just purchased my first road bike a Specialized Roubaix Expert. My helmet I should have next week to start riding.

    I was wondering if anyone here was my age or older and how many miles would you recommend riding per day to start out? My mind tells me I can do anything but my body tells me different. I've got a gut, legs are in good shape but endurance is in question.

    Any advice would be much appreciated. I can't wait to get back into shape again. Sucks feeling like crap all the time! Glad I found this forum it might be a life saver...

    I started about your age, was 56 - and was way out of shape. The first month road every other day averaging 10 miles / ride (increasing through the month with the first one being 5 miles) - it was hard and there a few good hills. I rode at a pace that was not comfortable about half the time. Next month was about the same. The third month I was averaging 15 miles / ride and about 20 rides, the 4th about 20 miles / ride and about 20 rides. I was doing an occasional 50 miler 6 months after I started riding, and did my first 100 miler about a year after starting. It really does get easier quick if you stick with it.

    My advice - Make sure you bring a water bottle with you and plan a route that doesn't have many hills the first month - you will probably be surprised how much you have improved after a few months. Space your rides out at least a day apart to get some time to recover. One of the first limiters to distance you will find is saddle comfort. To fix this you will probably find you need a pair of cycling shorts with chamois and saddle time. If you live in cold weather climate that will prevent you riding during the Winter, consider getting a fluid trainer used and set your bike up on it in front of a TV to watch netfix or something during the Winter months so you don't lose ground before Spring.

    Be patient, and listen to your body - many years of cycling adventures and socializing are ahead of you if you stick with it!
    Gravel Rocks

    Trek Domane
    Niner RLT9 (Gravel Bike)
    Trek Crockett

  3. #3
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: kiwisimon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Posts
    6,705
    Great advice up there. Probably if you go too hard and too fast your knees are going to suffer.
    The best thing you can do do your body is get fit to the bike. Your LBS should be able to help you here when you get padded shorts and clip in shoes and pedals, (stupidly still called clipless).

    If you go for a ride and it's windy, if possible come home with a tail wind. Head winds suck when you are gassed. If you get gassed, stop and take some pictures and you'll get your wind back soon enough.

    Make sure you can change a tube incase you get punctures.


    Practice clipping in and out a bunch before you go riding but you will likely topple over at some stage, likely in your driveway. When riding stop pedaling long before you want to stop and unclip whilst coasting to a stop. I'd suggest you unclip on the right side as that way if you fall over it'll be left into the way of cars and 18 wheelers but your derailleur won't get bumped. Practice both feet just in case.

    Finally Hydrate with water before you start riding and Be patient, and listen to your body - many years of cycling adventures and socializing are ahead of you if you stick with it! Still waiting for pics of the bike.

  4. #4
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    3,494
    I'd recommend focusing on time and frequency vs. miles. I think guys that focus on miles tend to over ride for their ability because they set unrealistic goals. Something like an hour on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and maybe a bit longer one on Saturday say 2 hours. 5 hours/week isn't too much to get very fatigued but, enough to get your body used to cycling. And it should be plenty to get your metabolism jump started.

    Don't worry about speed or cadence too much. Focus on steady pressure and a supple smooth pedal stroke.

    Do yourself a huge favor and buy a front white light and set it to some sort of blinking mode during the day time. Get a red tail light and again set it to flash during the day. At night if you ride with others set the red light to steady and obviously the front to steady.

    For the week end ride I highly suggest finding a group of people to ride with and be social with. It's super fun, you'll likely learn a bit and maybe make some good friends. You may here of ABC rides where A=fast B=medium and C is usually a very casual group not wanting to race or push it. Ride with the C's to start.

    Best of luck.

  5. #5
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Posts
    11
    Thanks everyone for the great advice. I'll be sure to update here in the coming weeks. I'll certainly post pics of my bike sometime this week and some of the gear that I have purchased. Helmet will be here in a couple days and then I'll start riding. Excited to say the least!

  6. #6
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
    Posts
    49
    What part of California are you in?
    Im in the Bay Area? pm me and I can probably help.

  7. #7
    Pack Fodder.
    Reputation: Alaska Mike's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    1,808
    Make sure you have the basics covered as far as equipment goes, and then just ride. New cyclists (and many old cyclists), buy a lot of crap that just ends up sitting in a box somewhere.

    You got the bike and helmet. A small saddle bag with a spare tube, a small patch kit, and tire levers is a good start. A mini pump or C02 inflator with multiple cartridges. A bottle cage or two and water bottles.

    Other than that, focus on contact points. You have three areas that come into contact with the bike - hands, butt, and feet. Spend your money there.

    Do not get an extra-padded saddle. Decent bike shorts (I prefer bibs) make life better, because the padding stays where it's needed as you move around. They don't have to be top-of-the line, but they should fit well. Jerseys are up to you. I prefer form-fitted ones, because flapping is just wasted energy.

    Cycling shoes have stiffer soles. I suggest a lot of beginners go with mountain bike shoes and pedals because they're easier to walk in, the cleats don't wear down as fast, and they're often cheaper. A "clipless" pedal like the CrankBrothers Candy or Shimano A530 have a big platform so you can pedal even when you're not clipped in.

    Hands are trickier, because fit plays a large role in comfort there. I wear gloves for protection in case of a fall and padding to absorb road vibration. They're not a requirement by any means, but I always opt for them.

    As others have said, find a recreational ride in your area if at all possible. Local shops usually are clued into any that happen.

    Ride as much as you feel like. This is a fun activity, so keep it in perspective. There's no need to make it an obligation. Take time to notice things as you ride, explore new roads, see what's around the next corner. Plan out adventures and routes. Don't get wrapped up into a constant cycle of further and faster. Just go out and chase that endorphin high. As you ride more, you'll naturally gravitate to a set of metrics you feel are important. Just keep fun as the goal.

  8. #8
    Slowski
    Reputation: eboos's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    105
    Once you get a little bit of time under your belt getting used to riding again, I totally recommend joining some local club rides. I am sure you will find that there are other people in a similar situation as yourself, and they can provide great motivation. Talk to people in local shops and ask about the different clubs in the area. Some will be more casual, others more race oriented.

  9. #9
    flinty-eyed moderator
    Reputation: Coolhand's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Posts
    12,810
    Like the idea of finding some like minded folks to ride with.
    Dr. Cox: Lady, people aren't chocolates. Do you know what they are mostly? Bastards. Bastard-coated bastards with bastard fillings. But I don't find them half as annoying as I find naive bubble-headed optimists who walk around vomiting sunshine.

  10. #10
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Posts
    7
    I started at 40, but came from a solid running background (including in college) although had tapered off due to injuries and fatigue. If you were a good runner you probably have the lungs and the ability to suffer, which is very helpful in this sport! On my first ride with a semi-talented group, I was left behind on the second big hill. That was a big motivating factor and it also changed my mind about cycling: I didn't think that much of it to be honest, before I was dropped... It changed my life. I am on my third bike, progressing up the ladder of better gear, and avg 8K km / yr. The long weekend rides slim you down quick, and the early morning rides keep me off the drink and the flab off the waistline. Good luck. Welcome to a great sport.

  11. #11
    Motocafe
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    9
    Start slow and concentrate on building up easy miles. Make sure your bike is a good fit to avoid injuries. Training has come a long way and there are a ton of websites out there to help. If you're unsure about riding outdoors, start by riding indoors with an app like Zwift. Training just like dieting all require self discipline. These are built up over time so don't get frustrated. Set some easy goals and start with some small accomplishments.

  12. #12
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    307
    I recommend starting out easy and build-up endurance so you don't get discouraged (or injured). If you're just doing this for your health, then there's no rush to do big miles right away. Pushing too hard too fast will likely result in injury, not to mention a lot of sore muscles.

    You mention that you used to run a lot, but runner don't use the same muscles bikers do (and that's even if you are currently in good physical shape as a runner). Perhaps set an initial goal of 10 miles round trip. If that was way too easy, try 15 next time. Just don't let your head tell you how great you feel when your 30+ miles from home and then find-out you can't make it back once your legs do run out of gas!

    Even if your legs somehow have the strength to do a long ride, your butt muscles will definitely not be in shape and will be very sore for days after your first few rides. The pain of a sore butt typically only goes away when your start to build-up your butt muscles (which is the reason why pros can ride on seats with hardly any padding). I used to call this "sore-ass syndrome"

    With your bike being new and new to you, it's pretty likely that it's going to be a while before you get used to it and get it dialed-in to fit you. On your first few rides, you may find the seat or bar height isn't right, your pedal cleats might not be aligned properly, etc. Therefore, take a few Allen wrenches with you on your first few rides so you can make adjustments "on the fly" instead of having to ride home in pain from poor fit. Heck, after a few rides, your brake and derailleur cables are going to stretch and so your bike is going to need a tune-up as well.

  13. #13
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: troutmd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    23,672
    If you are going to use clip in pedals (good option) start with one shoe with the clip in cleats and the other without. You'll gain confidence safely and quickly this way. Soon thereafter you'll discover more efficient and effective pedaling.

    As other have said, first month or so avoid climbs if possible.

    Finally if you bought your bike at a shop, ask them to put it in a stationary trainer and have them adjust the seat/bars with you on the bike as a good starting point.
    I am 100% convinced the internet and social media are not the salvation to human civility.

  14. #14
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    367
    I'll be 61 in a month and while I have been riding steadily for at least a couple or few decades, or more, I began racing again three years ago after a decades long layoff. In short, what everyone has already said.

    Along with water and a took and patch kit, that you'll want to know how to use, I'd say bring some food as well. A bar or two in your pocket can be a ride saver. I'd also invest in good shorts and jerseys. You'll have to figure out what you like.

    You'll also have to expect a sore butt and shoulders at least initially. I'm off the mind that the problem with most saddles is that we don't give our butt time to get used to them, though that isn't always the case. I have the same saddle on the bikes I ride most often so I don't need to adjust.

    As for riding, consider avoiding hills at first, if you can. Also, look for bike paths as you'll have less to worry about and lower speed limits will maybe keep you from wanting to push it too much.

    Mostly, just have fun.
    Bradley

Similar Threads

  1. Any middle age gamers out there?
    By High Gear in forum The Lounge
    Replies: 44
    Last Post: 12-15-2013, 08:51 PM
  2. And so the middle-age memory lapse begins....
    By Big-foot in forum The Lounge
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 01-03-2012, 07:56 PM
  3. Replies: 104
    Last Post: 04-04-2011, 09:40 AM
  4. What age does middle-age start?
    By the_rydster in forum The Lounge
    Replies: 83
    Last Post: 12-06-2007, 06:11 PM
  5. The heck with middle age, when does old age start?
    By MikeBiker in forum The Lounge
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 12-06-2007, 07:28 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT ROADBIKEREVIEW

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2019 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.