Fitness, or lack thereof

Discussion in 'The Bike Cafe' started by jllbmx, Jun 23, 2016.

  1. jllbmx

    jllbmx New Member

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    Hello,

    I'm a 61 y.o. male, returning to cycling after a few years off. I'm finding it somewhat discouraging since my ride limit is around 16 miles and my average speed is usually between 9 and 10 mph. WTH?

    I often have limited time after work, so I try to get in a short, really short, 6 mile ride. If I stomp on it, I can average 10-11 mph. Again, no speed records. On these rides, my heart rate is pretty consistently at or above 135 bpm.

    For context, my bike is a Specialized cyclocross model with maybe 33mm tires. I don't have the greatest area to ride in, and much of it is on a seawall paved path. So, skinny tire speed demons won't fit in.

    From my perspective, this isn't optimal, but it is getting me off the couch to do... something.

    Appreciate your comments,

    John
     
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  2. SirJoe

    SirJoe Active Member

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    Hello John and welcome. It's good to hear that you have gotten back onto the saddle. What you are doing is ideal, it's better to start slow and gradually build up the distance. Too often people rush out and try to ride too bigger a distance and too fast and end up getting cramps. Slow and gradual is the best way to build up stamina and strength.
     
  3. north woods gal

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    John, you're only competing with yourself, so don't worry about how your speed compares to anyone else's. Use it as a gauge to measure your progress.

    One thing that you might want to consider is buying a trainer so you can ride your bike, indoors, too. Because I live in a cold climate, I ride a lot of miles, indoors, but riding indoors is also very convenient, because I can ride whenever I want, for as long as I want. It's not just about beating bad weather. Be a great way for you to get back into bike shape.
     
  4. SirJoe

    SirJoe Active Member

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    A bike trainer is a great suggestion, provided you have the space for it. There are even some that have simulators connected to them and it feels like you are really going out for a ride.
     
  5. mauricioq

    mauricioq Member

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    You're doing it right, you need to start slow and start by gaining resistance, and only then make bigger distances. You'll notice the difference.
     
  6. neednoexcuse

    neednoexcuse Member

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    I agree. Successful people starts slow. Every big person starts slow but with the help of consistent hard work and practise, he makes it big. Many people don't do it right. They think that they need to start big and that is a wrong thought. The other thing that is required is 'patience'. You need to have extraordinary patience. Then, you will be able to notice and see the results.
     
  7. gracer

    gracer Member

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    Hi John! :) First off, let me commend you for going back to cycling after a years of not getting on the cycling wheel. I do agree with what the rest of the members said. Starting slow and gradually increasing your speed is the way to go especially after being away from biking for quiet some time. Soon you'll be able to be at your peak again.
     
  8. hades_leae

    hades_leae Member

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    I agree with you on this statement, I remember when I first got started with riding bikes. I thought about riding like the pros, I made a mistake thinking that. I tried to ride my bike for 20 plus miles my first time out. I had no clue as to what stamina was at the time.

    I told myself that since I'm not walking, I should be able to pass threw cities easily. I got that thought from watching movies, and learning about people in real life who rode their bikes around the country just exploring. Little did I know that I wasn't ready for it.

    It takes time to build up to something you really want to do, you just can't push it, otherwise you may be breaking your body down more. I had to take a taxi home after about 10 miles. I was exhausted.
     
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  9. mauricioq

    mauricioq Member

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    This is the base not only for cycling but for any other sport or activity. You need to learn first, start with the basic and the go progressing through time. It's important that people know this, no one knows everything at start.
     
  10. Djordje87

    Djordje87 Member

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    Take it easy of course. Strength, stamina and cycling power will come with time. You cannot expect to have that over night. You go slow and overtime results will be there if you are constant in you training routine. Remember that it is crucial, especially in your age, not to strain yourself because you can have some unwanted injuries and then you are back to square none.
     
  11. SirJoe

    SirJoe Active Member

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    I learned that through trial and error. I went through a period of my life that I didn't move around that much and started putting on weight. I remember I once was in a hurry I tried to run about 100 meters, it took me forever and I was out of breath. I realized that I had to do something about it. I started real slow. First just walking around the block and gradually increasing the distance. I only started seeing real results two weeks after I started but didn't change my new routine. When I got back on my bike I did the same thing, the great thing is because I went so slow, even if I go a week or more time without cycling I don't feel it. Through the whole process I never got a cramp or overly tired and best of all I feel great.
     
  12. Corzhens

    Corzhens Well-Known Member

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    That's already something from your bike because you realize that it gives you the impetus to make the effort of doing exercise. My initial intention with riding is for leisure and fun but later on, it is the exercise that was my objective because I have an office work and has no more time to exercise in the morning. For me, the bike doesn't matter as long as I can ride it and it can bring me somewhere, it would do for the needed physical exertion.
     
  13. hades_leae

    hades_leae Member

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    Yeah that's what happens when you train your body to handle something over a period of time, it will get used to it and you will have no problems in the future. Now if you really wait a long time, then over time your body will not be so used to it anymore.

    That's actually how I train in the gym, and I know for a fact that a lot of people will give up in the first week not knowing that everything was going to be OK after a little more training.
     
  14. SirJoe

    SirJoe Active Member

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    This is true but the period that you can go with out doing it is longer then say if you rushed it. Since the muscles in your body take longer to build up they will also take longer to disappear.
     
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