Road Bike, Cycling Forums banner
1 - 9 of 9 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
One of the older members (ie 40+ years of riding and countless 000's of km in his legs) of our Saturday morning bunch made a comment yesterday that it takes around 2 years of regular riding to get really fit, but only a couple of weeks off the bike to start to lose that fitness.

Assuming you don't do any other exercise at all while you're not riding, does your fitness start to fall away after just a couple of weeks ? And what about his comment about 2 years to get really fit. Is there any truth to that ??
 

·
Juanmoretime
Joined
·
2,201 Posts
Relatively accurate statement for the over 40 crowd.

I'm sure, he or she, is referring to top fitness as in race shape. I've been a multisport person for over 30 years and if you read any books on training, a serious injury that causes you not be be able to train, at all, will result in a loss of 75% of your fitness after 3 weeks. The aging clock speeds this process up. Once you been doing this for a long time you do have one fact in your favor, muscle memory. Sadly to say if your are a top level racer in your catagory and over 40, a serious injury will either have you spending a long time to get back to that level or you might never regain that former fitness.

Moral of the story: Train smart and avoid injury, if your body is telling you to rest, do it.
 

·
SoCal--S Beach to the Dam
Joined
·
1,031 Posts
More then 2 days in a row off the bike and i've lost some of my legs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,509 Posts
Unfortunatly truer than you'd want to think.

I took four to six weeks off after and intense cross season, and am dead on a 50 mile not too intense ride. It's amazing. I'm starting back up on my base tomorrow. I focus on cross so that's why I take this time of the year off. I've got some short term speed, but on a long ride, longer than 1 hour, I'm good for riding, but not attacking.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
838 Posts
BS, IMHO. I broke my leg and was on crutches almost 2 months, spent another month doing nothing but very light trainer and elliptical excercise. When I got back on the bike, I wouldn't have won any races, but I still had the fitness to cover the same ground I was accustomed too, just a little slower. A couple more months to get it all back. I was 35 at the time. I sure hope there's not some big cliff at 40 !

On the other hand, maybe if you don't have as much fitness in the first place, there's not so much to loose!!
 

·
Banned forever.....or not
Joined
·
24,421 Posts
Much truth in that.

For the average 40+ rider, it takes one day, for every day off to get back into shape. If you are off for 3 weeks, it'll take 3 weeks to regain the same fitness. The older you get, the worse it gets. For a 50+ rider, it'll take 4 weeks to get back, instead of 3 weeks.
On the other hand, a 30+ rider may take only 2 1/2 weeks to get back into shape.
 

·
SoCal--S Beach to the Dam
Joined
·
1,031 Posts
Thats to cut and dry. A 120 pounder will be different,a lot then a 225 pounder and what kind of shape your in before a layoff and what other stuff you do on the layoff,ya see.
 

·
Endorphin Junkie
Joined
·
203 Posts
For me at least...

litespeedchick said:
I was 35 at the time. I sure hope there's not some big cliff at 40 !
There has been a noticable increase in recovery time from 35 to 41. :^( However, I would consider myself below average as far as athletic gifts. I work hard and I'm still slow. Ymmv.

Kathy
 

·
Ironbutt
Joined
·
203 Posts
You're right, unfortunately

I had a really bad crash the day after my 55th birthday, and was off the bike for five months. In four months, I was back riding with my regular group, but definitely not pushing the pace. Then I had surgery to make more repairs, and was off the bike again for another month. I'm still not back to where I was before the crash, but am getting better and faster. I am a LOT more critical about poor bike handling in the paceline.
litespeedchick said:
BS, IMHO. I broke my leg and was on crutches almost 2 months, spent another month doing nothing but very light trainer and elliptical excercise. When I got back on the bike, I wouldn't have won any races, but I still had the fitness to cover the same ground I was accustomed too, just a little slower. A couple more months to get it all back. I was 35 at the time. I sure hope there's not some big cliff at 40 !

On the other hand, maybe if you don't have as much fitness in the first place, there's not so much to loose!!
 
1 - 9 of 9 Posts
Top