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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is an interesting week for me. I'm not big on adult birthdays. I agree with the comedian who once said "There comes an age when people should stop celebrating their birthday. And that age is about 16." I despise adults who make too big a deal out of their own birthdays.

But this week I turn 50 and it's causing me a lot more introspection than I would have ever expected. Much of that introspective occurred during the 5 or so hours I spent in the saddle this weekend.

At 50, I'm in better shape and lighter than I've been in the last 15 years. In those 15 years, I went from an amateur mountain bike racer, avid bump skier, and amateur triathlete to a morbidly obese, workaholic. I was too tired, too out of shape, and too fat to even think about doing any sort of physical activity. And I missed out on a lot of life.

I was too fat and tired to go walking with my kids.

I was too fat and tired to take my family skiing and introduce them to the sport that was my passion for decades.

I was too fat and tired to join them on annual family camping trips with their aunts, uncles, and cousins.

I was too fat and tired to go kayaking with my brother-in-law, skiing with my high school buddies (who still meet for annual ski trips), hiking, SUPing, or any other fun activity. What I COULD do was sit in front of a computer or TV...and I was very good at that.

But returning to mountain biking changed all that. I cleaned up my old HT and went out on flat dirt path for 30 minutes at a time. 3 years later, I'm down 71 pounds and riding hard every weekend and any other chance I get. I'm probably going to race this year.

But that alone doesn't describe what mountain biking has done for me. Saying that "mountain biking has made me a better mountain biker" is both obvious and unimpressive.

But mountain biking has made me better at everything else. I can enjoy far more activities with far more people solely because I'm riding a lot.

- I joined my son for a few days of skiing in Colorado having not been on skies for over 10 years...it was great. We skied from first chair to last on every bit of the mountain...including a grueling hike to the peak above the highest chair. No problem.

- I've taken the kids to Costa Rica for a week and spent our time hiking, SUPing, climbing, and surfing...things I wouldn't have been able to even consider a few years ago.

- We hike and walk as a family. Even turning beach vacations into an active vacation.

- I raced the Spartan Race (obstacle course race) with a bit of running added into the mix. I wouldn't have made it past the first obstacle a few years ago but I finished the race with a large group of friends and felt great the whole time.

- I look forward to camping trips, kayak trips, ski trips, and, of course, fun mountain bike getaways. It doesn't matter if it's for an hour, a day, a weekend, or a week. Life is VERY different.

So, Fifty, you can kiss my ass. I'm coming at you like a spider monkey...on a mountain bike.
 

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Absolutely amazing. I am starting on a similar journey, and this is EXACTLY what I needed to read right now. Thanks, and congrats!
 

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Just fantastic! I will add that biking has done the same to me! About a year ago I was a slightly pudgy 17 year old who didn't get out much. I had ridden a lot with my dad when I was younger but he began getting joint problems and stopped riding, so I did too. One spring day I took out his Specialized Rockhopper for a quick pedal down our local trail system. I fell in love all over again! A year later I am down 15 pounds, came in 3rd place at the New England Regional Championships (only cat 3, but still a very proud moment for me) and have been introduced to rock climbing, and surfing. I have never been happier. Even now, recovering from a broken ankle I try to find time to crutch around outdoors to take photos. All because of riding.
 

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I don't spend a lot of time here, but I am glad I logged on today :) Great post! I'm 46 with three kids who are 7, 8 and 10, and I know I need to keep active in order to make the most of the time I have with them, both while they are kids and as they become adults.

Your post helped map a little of the future for me. Thanks for sharing.
 

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Thanks for sharing. Very inspirational. I'm a 42 year old father who got back into mountain biking (after 20 years) a few months ago primarily to get back into shape.
 

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Agree. I was a former 22-year smoker and meth addict. After rehab, I gained 90lbs and realized I need to begin a FUN exercise routine that does not involve a boring, stinky gym.

The MTB fixed my heart and gave me a lean set of abs I never knew I had....after years of being hidden by a massive layer of abdominal fat. I do realize Mountain Biking has its own set of life-threatening risks....but I love the culture, nature, gear fascination and fitness much more than worry about being sedentary while suffering from the collateral damage of obesity.
 
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Nice testamonial KevinGT how mtb transforms lives. It which also supports the notion that "life begins at 50"

I can't image what my life would be like if I hadn't been introduced to mtb in 2007 (I'm 50+ now)

Thanks for sharing your positive post
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Nice testamonial KevinGT how mtb transforms lives. It which also supports the notion that "life begins at 50"

I can't image what my life would be like if I hadn't been introduced to mtb in 2007 (I'm 50+ now)

Thanks for sharing your positive post
If the smile in your avatar is yours and you are really over 50, you are definitely doing something right!
 

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THAT is passion, what a great read!

I'm 31 and weigh 5lbs less than what I did in high school 100% because of MTBing. I was 25lbs over my high school weight before I started riding 6 years ago. I dropped that weight in 2 years and maintained it for the last 4. Not quite as dramatic as some but I'm positive that if I didn't start riding my weight would have kept creeping up. If I hadn't dropped the weight my wife probably wouldn't have given me the time of day. She's not superficial but does take care of herself and I doubt she would have been as receptive to my smooth pick up lines (yeah right) with an extra 30lbs+ on my gut.

I'm convinced that because of MTB I got to marry my best friend, can't say much more than that...
 

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Double thumbs up! Agree with every word. MTB'n has started a domino effect in my life, all for the better. Better health, diet, friends, life, etc. Reconnected me with who I was/am.
 

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I just turned 61. I started riding on the bike path in 2013. An 8 mile round trip was a tough trip for me. I rode up some nasty hills today(for some reason people have decided that an undevelopable mountain is a great place to put up a few hundred houses at the value of a million+). I cannot believe how strong my legs are. I have lost twenty pounds, but unfortunatly, I am still ovewieght, glad it is working for you.
 

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42 here... mtb-ing helped me loose 15kg's... might be doing first race in a few weeks... absolutely love riding.

Only problem is, now I don't have enough time to do something else!?

Slowly getting kids into it... hopefully they catch the bug soon ^^

PS - unfortunately it hasn't made me better at my job... I wish :p

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Yeah, it's fun being in the Masters Class now. LOL
 
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