Mountain Bike Reviews Forum banner
1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,055 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Now that I'm 52 years old my riding is less consistent than I would wish. I have days in which I'm climbing a (brief) 30-degree slope and not using my granny gear. Then there are days like today. I had hoped to do a long ride at Henry Coe State Park but felt so flat going up Coit Road from the Coyote Creek entrance that I sat at the horse camp picnic table, rested and ate, and looked at my map for a shorter route. I felt disappointed but knew better than to try to put in 25 miles. I opted for Grapevine Trail to Anza Trail, up Anza to Cullen Trail, Cullen to Grizzly Gulch Trail, and out.

I'd never ridden Cullen Trail before and thought it was great. I did not climb it well, but I know I'll feel better another day. And I saw nice wildflowers throughout the ride—pictures are attached. Sorry that some are out of focus. So I was rewarded in two different ways despite my lethargy and lack of strength: a great new trail experience and seeing the early wildflowers.

Still, my inconsistency makes me nervous. I'd like to do one of the more difficult Western Spirit rides in Utah this summer. It's four days of hard work, mostly over 10,000 feet on challenging singletrack. What if I have an off day? I guess I'll just have to power through it. Any suggestions on how to impose perseverance on oneself are welcome!

P.S.: There's a big tree fall on Grizzly Gulch Trail between the two Timm Trail entrances. It lies across the trail and knocked flat a bunch of old barbed-wire fence, so you can walk over it to get around the blockage.
 

Attachments

·
Be happy......go riding
Joined
·
136 Posts
Flat legs blues

I had one of those days yesterday at Rockville. Normally I can power thru the large rock garden there, in the ascending direction, using various lines as I go up and down thru the garden to work on my techincal skills. Well, I gave up after several failed attempts, and then proceeded to ride my normal route through the park. My usual 12 mile ride turned into only an 8 mile ride because of my bummed out feeling. I'm also 52 yrs.old and have come to realize that I will have those "off days" and as disappointing as those days are, I just have remind myself that it's still a blessing to be able to mountain bike, like I do, at this stage in my life.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,197 Posts
Don't use age as an excuse, although its a valid one but I'm only 28 and I have just the same off days! It happens to the best even I'm sure
 

·
ol'guy who says hi &waves
Joined
·
2,546 Posts
I'll be 56 in a few weeks and really relate to "off" days. Preparation, mentally and physically, a couple days before the ride, becomes more important as time passes. Finding a good recovery drink/diet makes a huge difference for multi-day rides.

I see it's not uncommon for we "seasoned" riders to stop and smell the roses.

From yesterday.........
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
723 Posts
As I was training for the Sierra KOM time trial over the last 4 weeks I was really getting down about the fact that my training times were well over my time on last years climb. I showed up for the race and I beat last years time by almost 3 minutes, which was 11 minutes faster than my worst training times. Then I climbed Sierra again in the rain after the time trial to watch the race and I was back to the slower mode. I don't think there is any guarantee that one will have their best day on an event that they train for but with the proper rest techniques I think it is quite likely. I think the trick is to enjoy the moderate paced workouts and not always be trying to beat times or have a max day. Slow down, take some pictures, and ride a lot.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
190 Posts
Being member of 50+ year age group, I have found when the legs don't respond as I would like I just scale back my plans for the day. I actually stop and take in the scenery. It makes what would be a miserable ride into a pleasant ride.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,055 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks, guys. Your responses are great and I feel positively reinforced by them.

Two days after my Coe ride my legs are still rather flat, but I did go out in the rain this morning and do an 1100-foot hill climb on a road near Mission Peak Regional Cow Pasture in Fremont. I didn't feel lively while doing it, but I feel invigorated as a result of the effort.

I think some of my lethargy may come from my resumption, after many years, of weightlifting at a local gym. It feels great and my upper body needs it, but it may well drain a bit of energy I'd otherwise have for more riding.
 

·
I like mtn biking, too
Joined
·
3,230 Posts
Sometimes I have those days, too. (And I hope I'll be riding places like Coe when I'm your age!). Anyway, not saying this is true in your case, but for me diet seems to be a huge factor. My last lethargic day riding was when I ate an egg and cheese bagel about 30 min's before the ride. I felt like falling asleep after that, not riding.

However, I just did a 21 mile, pretty strenuous ride around Butano yesterday, with only a tiny fruit smoothie prior to the ride, and felt pretty strong. I tend to have a lot more energy during the ride when I avoid eating a whole lot, which is contrary to what "they" say you should do, but all I know is, fruit works, bagels do not. Digestion takes a lot of energy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,055 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
shredchic said:
Sometimes I have those days, too. (And I hope I'll be riding places like Coe when I'm your age!). Anyway, not saying this is true in your case, but for me diet seems to be a huge factor. My last lethargic day riding was when I ate an egg and cheese bagel about 30 min's before the ride. I felt like falling asleep after that, not riding.

However, I just did a 21 mile, pretty strenuous ride around Butano yesterday, with only a tiny fruit smoothie prior to the ride, and felt pretty strong. I tend to have a lot more energy during the ride when I avoid eating a whole lot, which is contrary to what "they" say you should do, but all I know is, fruit works, bagels do not. Digestion takes a lot of energy.
Thanks, Shredchic. You bring up a point I think of often, which is that I feel privileged and lucky to be able to ride difficult trails at my age. I used to road race and mountain-bike race and know a lot of racers who were much better than me at the time but who in their late 30s or early 40s began to suffer back or knee problems and now can barely ride at all. I feel like a survivor.

I think I have the opposite reaction to food. I seem to need a huge breakfast before I can ride comfortably. But maybe I should try your approach and see if I ride better on fewer calories or at least less heavy food. I do get sleepy sometimes in the middle of a long ride.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,055 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
shredchic said:
. . . (And I hope I'll be riding places like Coe when I'm your age!). . .
I meant to say earlier that I also hope you'll be riding places like Coe when you're my age, and well past it too. I was encouraged at the Appetite Seminar ride in Marin a couple of years ago to see two guys probably in their sixties who were climbing like helium-filled balloons. Very strong and fit notwithstanding their solid-white hair.

In case anyone is unfamiliar with the Appetite Seminar, it may be the oldest mass mountain bike ride in the country; it takes place on Thanksgiving morning, does the Pine Mountain loop at Mount Tamalpais, and usually attracts close to a thousand people. It's great fun.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,751 Posts
Turkey ride challenge

imtnbke said:
In case anyone is unfamiliar with the Appetite Seminar, it may be the oldest mass mountain bike ride in the country; it takes place on Thanksgiving morning, does the Pine Mountain loop at Mount Tamalpais, and usually attracts close to a thousand people. It's great fun.
OK, that's what we have to aim for on this year's Turkey ride: a thousand people. Who counted this year's riders?

Anyway, anyone who thinks Coit road to Grapevine, Anza to Cullen, and especially Cullen (that one's steep!) to Grizzly Gulch is an easy ride, is a pretty darn good mountain biker. Keep it up! J.L.
 

·
The Green Machine
Joined
·
149 Posts
Happens to everyone. I'm 27 and get off days too. I think the most important things are that your body is properly rested and you get good food into you.

Don't forget to work your legs when your lifting as well. In the beggining they will be sore and flat but things will get better and in time it will make you stronger.
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Top