How true is this?
I know I am not the oldest rider here but I will be 55 in July. I’m the youngest guy in our group with the oldest one being a young 66 in June. I notice on the trails that it is always “older” riders. Not sure what the average age would be but I see way more riders in their 40s than I see 20 year olds. Not exactly sure what that says except you are never too old to ride.
One night last winter I was getting out of my vehicle. The wind was howling, it was snowing a blizzard and there was already a few feet of snow on the ground from previous storms. I was pulling on my Camelback and clipping on my helmet when a young lady, maybe 20, walked by. She had her hood up and was hugging herself to keep warm. I turned by helmet light on and this is how the conversation went:
Her: Are you going out for a ride right now?
Her: Isn’t it a little cold?
Me: A little but not too bad if you dress properly
Her: Isn’t it a little slippery? Aren’t you afraid of falling?
Me: You just have to keep your wits about you
Her: But it’s snowing and dark out.
Me: I know. My favorite conditions to ride in
Her: Well good for you at your age still getting out for your exercise
Me: (Inwardly) Why don’t you go home and get your bike and we’ll see who is who’s age
True Story. It was a fantastic ride too, as always
As someone firmly entrenched in middle age - 47 in a few weeks - my thoughts on older vs younger riders being the ones out on the trails, and roads, and rail-trails, etc is probably less of the currently popular hand-wringing around ‘kids don’t exercise anymore’ and more likely a case of 20-somethings are too busy trying to find and retain gainful employment, pay student loans, start their married lives to have time to devote to a lot of recreational riding. Add to that, most young people haven’t got to that point in their lives where health concerns drive a lot of us to start taking better care of ourselves. They still think they are going to live forever in perfect health and fitness.
I know I didn’t really get to a point in my career that afforded me that kind of time, motivation, or the extra disposable income until I was close to 40. And I don’t even have kids.
Exercise is a choice, a choice we all should be making. But it can be a tough choice to make when you are trying to make ends meets and paying your dues. I don’t envy young folks starting out right now.
As a 52-year old (53 next month), I’m not quite up to 50 years on a bike, but I could totally relate to the video. Still loving to ride and wanting to ride as long as I can. When I was younger, 50 seemed ancient. I’m beyond 50 now, but pretty active (started playing badminton now too) and loving life.