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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am just returning to riding after a break that lasted about 8 years. One thing I have noticed is that the same rides seem to be harder for me now. Obviously this is a result of age, weight and being out of shape. I can't do anything about the age but this is the year to work on the other two. My work schedule and other obligations limit my ride times as I am sure it does for many of you. On a good week I can get in about 3 rides.

What recommendations can you give to make the most out of the limited time I have. Thus far I have done nothing specific other than to try and get out when I can. Thanks for any suggestions that may help.
 

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I started riding again nearly 3 years ago after a 20 some year break (I'm 47). Bottom line, you just need miles for a few months. I would avoid getting into intervals and high intensity stuff until you get a foundation built. Given that the nice weather is now here many places, avoid the temptation to be pushing yourself with other riders for a while. Perhaps later in the season, you can begin to push it.
 

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Of course the old rides are going to be harder! You're fat, out of shape, and old!

I also came back after 8 years off the bike, at age 40. It took a couple years before I felt like I was any good, and I'm still not what I was when I was 31. I'll never be; even discounting age (I'm 45 now), I won't train as hard as I did then. Maybe if I hadn't burnt out on riding and had kept training I'd have deterioriated less, but between 31 and 45 there's bound to be some loss of performance.

The important thing is to enjoy the riding. At least that came back pretty quickly for me. Not riding the same rides you used to do would be a good idea. I personally can't help thinking "I used to climb this in a 39x21 and now I'm on a 39x25! I suck!" when doing climbs I used to train on. So I try to ride different stuff.

Go put in some base miles and have fun.
 

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I second that emotion

I personally can't help thinking "I used to climb this in a 39x21 and now I'm on a 39x25! I suck!" when doing climbs I used to train on.
True that! I am 48 and coming back after a layoff of more than ten years. Today I decided to TT a 1.9 mile climb to give myself a base line for future comparison. I used to use this same climb as a training control back in the day. Back then it took me around 10:00, today 15:11. Ouch!

I agree with the previous posters who advised putting in some base miles before trying to push it too much. Also, I recommend getting a trainer or some rollers so you can squeeze in some more bike time even if is is not on the road.

Lastly, be patient with yourself. We all remember how fast we were back in the day. We do not, however, seem to remember how long it took us to build up to that level of performance. It took time, even back then with younger fitter bodies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the input. I must say that I am really enjoying getting back on the bike. It makes me wonder exactly why I quit in the first place. Although the rides are harder and the suffering seems to be more intense at times, I realize now that I need to do this for me both physically and mentally. I am even considering buying a new bike in a few months since the excitement is back. Now just to narrow that simple decision down a little!
 
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