Author Topic: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues  (Read 16136 times)

lucydad

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bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« on: January 23, 2015, 09:55:15 AM »
All,

I grew up on bicycles and rode a lot in various places we have lived.  When I got back into motorcycles 4 years ago the bikes were put outside and rusted up.  No room for the Kawa and bikes.  We also had the two summers of blistering heat in Houston.  Anyway for health reasons, and fun I am looking at buying a new bicycle.  There is a very local bike shop,with neighbor (bicycle obsessed) that works there, and they recommended this bike.  It is a hybrid type good for riding local paved bike paths, streets and also some of our flood control levees.  The bike would also work just fine for a bit more rugged riding when we get off the Gulf Coast.  I want a bike that will keep me happy for ten years in a variety of riding environments.

http://www.cannondale.com/nam_en/2015/bikes/fitness-urban/fitness/quick-cx/quick-cx-3

Health wise riding a bicycle is excellent for cardio and core strength.  And I will use it after work and some on weekends (although Guzzi riding is priority on weekends).  We have some excellent local bike paths.

Ok, here is a concern: last summer Ms. LD talked me into a stationary bike class.  Ok, fine.  But the result of a hard seat, and inability to unclip shoes (stuck) was a damaged prostate/dangly bits.  The injury took a while to heal.  And I am a bit concerned that bicycle riding could repeat?  But a better adjusted seat height and ability to pace myself, and simply get off should help?  And they make gel bicycle spandex thingys

Looking for advice and comments here.  Some interweb searches on male anatomy and bicycle riding are a bit concerning.  Knees and back and such are in ok shape for bicycles, I think. 

thanks in advance

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2015, 09:58:43 AM »
 If you buy from a good bike shop they should be able to fit the bike to you correctly. Tell them your issues.
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Offline donn

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #2 on: January 23, 2015, 10:13:36 AM »
Behold the recumbent bicycle.



You can tough it out on an "ass hatchet", as we call them, and you can improve your endurance - tougher butt, neck, hands - but any time you go past the time/distance you're accustomed to, you're back to the same uncomfortable reality:  bicycles are hard on the human anatomy.  Conventional bicycles that is, not the recumbent.  Go 10 times farther than you're used to, and you'll be tired, but uninjured.  (Careful with your knees, though - you can hurt yourself, if you don't gear down and pedal fast rather than hard.)  I ride a conventional bike some of the time, but short rides only.

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2015, 10:14:59 AM »
I won't ride on the road anymore as that's too dangerous.  About a year ago I went looking for a bike path bike a when my sister said that she had my old Peugeot UO9.  I cruise old school now but I was about to pull the trigger on a Fuji hybrid that was on sale.  I think the model is now the Crosstown and depending on which version you get they run around $300-$600.  I found it very comfortable for a "seasoned" man.

Although my Peugeot gets looks I think I am going to switch to a used mountain bike.  At the local park there are some trails and I want to give those a try.

« Last Edit: January 23, 2015, 10:47:06 AM by Dilliw »
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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2015, 10:14:59 AM »

Offline screamday

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2015, 10:15:33 AM »
If you buy from a good bike shop they should be able to fit the bike to you correctly. Tell them your issues.

This. Get the bike fitted properly. Don't let the bike shop just give you a bike then walk out the door. Get a frame size that fits than make sure they spend time with you getting it set up and adjusted correctly. It will make a world of difference.
Tony in SC
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Offline not-fishing

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2015, 10:18:08 AM »
As an old fart who's started riding 10 speeds with wool shorts, leather saddles and sew up tires I'd suggest getting a decent "hybrid bike" with bigger tires and a suspension post.  Also if its not to hilly a one speed works just fine.  You don't need to get clip-ons.  I've XC raced mountain bikes and been beaten by a fella with "flats".  Platform pedals work just fine but get the bigger ones with better bearings.  Being able to get your foot off the pedal is a plus. 

I remember when I picked out a bike for my father, when he was 60, this setup worked really well for him.  He wore out the original wheels and I built him up some decent wheels which rolled much better.  Here's a Diamondback REI sells.



A shock seatpost - and you don't want to go real cheap on these.



Bar ends to give you more hand positions that relieves pain in hands.



Finally and foremost get a decent pair of bike shorts, bike shoes and gloves -- you're body will thank you.  lycra is still by far the in best shorts - if you're brave enough to wear them the first time - I still do at a chubby 60 because I don't give a dam

Also I'd talk to some local cyclists and see what they say about shops.  Just like everything else there's at least 30 shops in the area I live and only about 3 I'd suggest.  The rest could be selling women's shoes for all they know.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2015, 10:22:14 AM by not-fishing »
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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #6 on: January 23, 2015, 10:18:48 AM »
 I think recumbents are pretty cool, but I'm scared of not being seen and getting run over. I have enough problems on my Bianchi Ero's with people trying to kill me!
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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #7 on: January 23, 2015, 10:20:06 AM »
Well, even professional riders with well fitted saddles/bikes are prone to pudendal nerve injury. So we're all at risk

I've read that recumbent bike riders don't seem to have that issue, but to me recumbents on the road look like death traps - way to low and out of drivers' lines of sight - even with their little flaggy things.

Best bet IMHO is a well fitted bike and saddle, padded shorts, and changing riding position frequently - take hills standing
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Offline Triple Jim

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #8 on: January 23, 2015, 10:31:08 AM »
Ok, here is a concern: last summer Ms. LD talked me into a stationary bike class.  Ok, fine.  But the result of a hard seat, and inability to unclip shoes (stuck) was a damaged prostate/dangly bits.  The injury took a while to heal.  And I am a bit concerned that bicycle riding could repeat?

Was this a one-time injury caused by something like slipping and banging your crotch on something, or was it a long-term thing?  I'm not far from 60 and ride a bicycle an hour a day, every day.  Sometimes it's 20 miles on the road, and sometimes it's an hour of strenuous mountain biking.  So far I have not had any injuries like you describe.

Spandex bicycle shorts or long pants (tights) tend to keep things in place, and contrary to the norm for young folks, I find I need to wear underwear as well.  You can get seamless jockey shorts made for cycling.

As far as seat hardness, it's my experience that it's nearly irrelevant.  The human rear end adapts to the seat, but it takes several weeks.  I've gone from a hard seat to a padded one and gotten sore, just because it was different.  I've also gone from daily running to cycling with a padded seat, and found that it still takes several weeks to adapt.  When starting out, the second and third days of riding were so bad that I had to put a lot of weight on the pedals for a couple miles, and ease back onto the seat.  But after riding daily again for a couple decades, I can go 100 miles on my relatively hard seat with no problem.

The Cannondale you're looking at should be a great all-around bike.

Edit:  wrbix makes a great point about standing on the pedals occasionally.  That's so normal to me that I don't even think about it, but it really does cut down on rear-end soreness.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2015, 10:37:20 AM by Triple Jim »
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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2015, 10:40:37 AM »
I'm not far from 60 and ride a bicycle an hour a day, every day.  Sometimes it's 20 miles on the road,


Wow, 20mph AVS - you da man.
I have a hard time doing 16 at 62yo!
Bill in VA, sometimes FL

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Offline Sasquatch Jim

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2015, 10:41:53 AM »
 When I was a young lad of 60 I could still ride a bike.
 I am trying to now but my feet keep falling off the pedals, I have no muscle control below the knees
 and the feet flop where ever they want.  In am going to a bicycle shop today to see if I can get some
 longer pedals.  I can't use the ones that snap onto the shoe because with no muscle control I would not
 be able to unsnap if I began to fall.
 They say once you learn to ride va bike you never forget.  They lie! The muscles of my lower legs have forgotten
 but  I am working on it.
Sasquatch Jim        Humanoid, sort of.

Offline not-fishing

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #11 on: January 23, 2015, 10:51:28 AM »
When I was a young lad of 60 I could still ride a bike.
 I am trying to now but my feet keep falling off the pedals, I have no muscle control below the knees
 and the feet flop where ever they want.

Here's your pedals you can do it yourself with an 8mm allen and 15 mm wrench.  Just remember there's a left threaded pedal and a right threaded pedal.  my youngest son ruined two sets of cranks using brute force and not paying attention to pedal threads



There are other models that are cheaper but they also have cheaper bearings.
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Offline NCAmother

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #12 on: January 23, 2015, 10:52:54 AM »
I like the Trek 7.4 FX  You should go to the trek site and read about it's specs.  I had a similar one 10 years ago!!!  Still great.  I did swap out the pedals for rubberized, it's amazing how many times you end up riding barefooted.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2015, 10:58:43 AM by NCAmother »

Offline Triple Jim

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #13 on: January 23, 2015, 11:14:51 AM »
Wow, 20mph AVS - you da man.
I have a hard time doing 16 at 62yo!

I'm 57 now, it'll catch up to me.  10 years ago I could average 21 mph for an hour.  Now if I don't really work at it, I won't make 20.  Keeping old-age at bay as long as possible is more important than speed.  And it's been shown that brain decline is slowed by regular aerobic exercise, so it's not just the body we're preserving.

There's an ex-racer who escaped from East Germany way back, that I occasionally ride with.  He's somewhere around 70 and keeps up with me just fine, so there's hope.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2015, 11:18:31 AM by Triple Jim »
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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #14 on: January 23, 2015, 11:41:51 AM »

Knowing a bit about where you live (Houston, Texas = very hot and humid much of the time) I wonder why you are giving up on the stationary bike workouts?  I don't see riding a bicycle in Houston as a part of any "real" exercise program.  You'll have "comfortable" riding perhaps as few as two months of the year (when you add up every day that you get to ride "comfortably").

IMHO, if you really want to exercise to benefit your health you need to do it at least four days a week every week.  To pull that off in Houston you're going to have to plan on "indoor" exercise, and if you want to emphasize "pedal power" that means a stationary bike.  Which leads me to this - spend the money and effort on getting your stationary bike set up right for you and then ride the thing for twenty minutes a day at least four days a week, preferably five.  Otherwise you'll soon have "another" bicycle sitting out back with the others turning into rust.

Just my two cents.

Good luck!

Bill

Offline donn

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #15 on: January 23, 2015, 11:50:16 AM »
I've read that recumbent bike riders don't seem to have that issue, but to me recumbents on the road look like death traps - way to low and out of drivers' lines of sight - even with their little flaggy things.

You don't need a flag.  My recumbent is a Ryan Vanguard, ancestor to the one I pictured.  Some recumbents lay you down more, and that's not for me - I mean, I've never tried it, but the neck position looks cramped and I doubt it does much for stability.  On a more sitting-up version like this, I'm as tall as the average car, plenty visible.  And it's like a lawn chair with wheels, ultimate comfort.  The one visibility issue it does have, I can't really look behind like I can on a conventional bicycle.  If there's a place to put a rear view mirror, possibly a helmet mount, that's a real good thing.

My recumbent isn't great for "off road", which includes gravel shoulders.  The transition from riding to walking is more awkward, starting is more awkward, the long wheelbase with lightly loaded front is poor for loose surfaces.  It's also at some disadvantage in hilly terrain - no standing up, and at slow speeds the long wheel base takes a lot of steering.  (Downhill is sweet, though, nothing like it.)  But the point is:  lawn chair with wheels/no soft tissue damage.  If I'm pedaling for miles, that's what I'm riding.

Offline Gliderjohn

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #16 on: January 23, 2015, 11:51:17 AM »
I ride a stationary bike 20 minutes averaging six days a week besides other exercises. I walk instead when time and weather permits. If it was practical for me to ride a bike outdoors instead that would be much better. I have been forcing myself to ride the stationary bike for about two years now because I really need to, but I HATE THE THING!!! If I could not watch TV while riding it I don't think I could continue to do it. I have to have my mind occupied elsewhere. It really does suck. :P I also keep my mind occupied thinking about what various firearms would do to the bike.
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Offline Guido Valvole

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #17 on: January 23, 2015, 12:02:33 PM »
 :+1 ++ on going to a good shop for proper fit. Be sure handlebar height is above seat height, and you may want to experiment with different bars. I've found straight mountain bike bars to be uncomfortable -- put your hands out in front of you and you'll see that they naturally require a little pullback. You want bars that allow multiple hand positions to reduce fatigue. There are plenty of choices and bicycles are much easier to work on than motorcycles.

Single speed can work if you're in relatively flat territory or in good shape. Internal-shift hubs are an acquired taste -- they've probably improved since the Sturmey-Archer junk of my youth (hey, something has to make an Italian motorcycle gearbox seem good in comparison  :) ). The most comfortable saddle I've found is the Brooks (leather) with the big rivets, seems more supple than the less-expensive variety. YMMV…
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Offline screamday

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #18 on: January 23, 2015, 12:02:33 PM »
I ride a stationary bike 20 minutes averaging six days a week besides other exercises. I walk instead when time and weather permits. If it was practical for me to ride a bike outdoors instead that would be much better. I have been forcing myself to ride the stationary bike for about two years now because I really need to, but I HATE THE THING!!! If I could not watch TV while riding it I don't think I could continue to do it. I have to have my mind occupied elsewhere. It really does suck. :P I also keep my mind occupied thinking about what various firearms would do to the bike.
GliderJohn

In the winter I ride a stationary bike, trying to get 20+ miles or 60 minutes in every morning before work. When it's nice outside I try to ride the same distance/time outdoors. I hate riding indoors also. Since I do not have cable TV, the programing available on OTA at 5:30AM is nil. I tried listening to music but even that got boring. So, since I've discovered video games (PS3) within the last couple of years, I now play video games while I ride.  :BEER:  :BEER: Much more interesting....so much so that sometimes I find myself riding longer than I had planned....which is a good thing.  8)
« Last Edit: January 23, 2015, 12:03:43 PM by screamday »
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Offline Aaron D.

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #19 on: January 23, 2015, 12:08:41 PM »
LD, that bike will do you fine. Your seat should be comfy and you should not require special clothes or shoes to ride for anything under 10 or 15 miles at a time if it's put together right.


Offline Tobit

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #20 on: January 23, 2015, 12:10:27 PM »
The kids finally grew past the WalMart quality bikes so after putting them on a Verza and GT, and another GT for the wife, the local shop gave me a deal on a used Specialized MTB.  I was riding my '80s Lotus Challenger but being a road bike it wasn't at all good for camping with the fam.  The best thing I did with the Specialized is to remove the MTB tires and install hybrid skins.  Thick road tread in the center, knobs on the sides.  Completely transformed the bike for greenline and road use.

Dang fun to ride too!



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Offline donn

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #21 on: January 23, 2015, 12:10:41 PM »
Another thought on recumbents - this is kind of out on the fringe of the fringe:


Cruzbike makes front wheel drive recumbents.  So the drive train, so to speak, is much shorter and more efficient.  I've never been on one, but talked to a rider who was very pleased with his.  It was a mountain bike conversion job - they used to sell a kit with which you could make a front wheel drive recumbent out of an ordinary mountain bike, ideally one with a low top tube and rear suspension.  It looks like they quit doing that, don't know.  He was a committed no-car type biker, and that was the bike for him.

lucydad

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #22 on: January 23, 2015, 12:36:05 PM »
Holy Schwinn Stingray, I go do laundry, walk poodles, and fill a Rx and the Guzzi forum comes through again.

Ok, to answer a bit:  the stationary bike injury was a one-off quirky thing. 

On riding a bicycle in Houston (hot humid half the year, fairly nice to cool/rainy other half)  yeah I hear you.  The deal is:  yes I have a gym membership I use about once a week for stretching and lifting weights.  I can hardly stand to go there, and as far as the ellipse and stationary bike machines:  boring boring.

I think a new bicycle would encourage me to get out and get more cardio.  Being outside is key for me, and yes I find bike riding fun, mostly.  Forget dense traffic streets, etc or long distance  My riding is informal and on local trails and there are lots here.  Neighbor is a fanatical rider, and she has time and is ten years younger and leads typical rides twice a week over 25 miles around this area.   Bike shop and owner are first rate:  will get the right fit.  I doubt I have ever had a bicycle the right size or fit. 

Likely this afternoon I will go run errands and drop by the bike shop.  It is cold and rainy so I doubt he will be busy and I will talk to him. 

thanks to all ;-T

Offline Cam3512

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #23 on: January 23, 2015, 01:32:01 PM »
I would hope your bike obsessed neighbor could properly set you up.  Most importantly, get a nice wide gel seat.  They make 'em for cruiser type bikes, and they bolt right on.
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Offline tonUPRacer

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #24 on: January 23, 2015, 03:42:11 PM »
LD,

I used to race bicycles and would put lots of training time in. 12-16 hours per week, this was usually done on very firm racing saddle. I've also suffered some short-term issues on my "man parts". Many saddle manufacturers make saddles with cut-out centers to relieve pressure on the important parts. I no longer race and only ride occasionally but I've since put new saddles on all my bikes, similar to the one on the link below. Bike fit is paramount as others have stated. Another thing is a good pair of cycling specific shorts, they will run $75 for a decent pair. If you're self-conscious, you can wear some baggy shorts over them. On another related note, I'm recovering from a double hernia operation. 10 days post-op. back at work but still sore. How long was it before you felt like you back to normal?

http://www.coloradocyclist.com/selle-italia-max-flite-gel-flow-saddle

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Offline Late to the party

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #25 on: January 23, 2015, 04:25:04 PM »
If you buy from a good bike shop they should be able to fit the bike to you correctly. Tell them your issues.

Truth... if it's a good shop.

Offline Steph

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #26 on: January 23, 2015, 04:43:16 PM »
Get something that will turn YOU on.

I have a mountain bike (Kona Smoke) and a road bike ( Cannodale CAAD 9), My son has a cyclocross (Kona Jake) that does both exceeding well 99% of the time. That's what I'd get if I had to do it again. Put flat pedals & keep it simple.

Decent mountain bike short will have the appropriate padding on the private bits that will add comfort. No need for the Lycra Lance Armstrong look. Cheap bicycle gloves will prevent a nurse spending an hour removing embedded dirt in your hand. A decent bicycle helmet will prevent a Schumacher incident.

For a little more than your chosen Cannodale you could get this ( & unsold previous year model could be cheaper) :




Edit: and the cyclocross handlebar add comfort due to the variation of hand positions over a straight flat bars

« Last Edit: January 23, 2015, 04:45:55 PM by Steph »

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #27 on: January 23, 2015, 05:09:59 PM »
Another thought on recumbents - this is kind of out on the fringe of the fringe:


Cruzbike makes front wheel drive recumbents.  So the drive train, so to speak, is much shorter and more efficient.  I've never been on one, but talked to a rider who was very pleased with his.  It was a mountain bike conversion job - they used to sell a kit with which you could make a front wheel drive recumbent out of an ordinary mountain bike, ideally one with a low top tube and rear suspension.  It looks like they quit doing that, don't know.  He was a committed no-car type biker, and that was the bike for him.

That looks really kool. I have a Rans recumbent (I'll ride their bicycles,but not fly their airplanes)  ;D that is really comfortable, but isn't *fun* to ride. The long wheelbase just doesn't get it. I'll look into it.
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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #28 on: January 23, 2015, 05:14:04 PM »
All,

Ok, I ran errands then went to the bike shop.  It is less than a mile from our house.  Went in and talked and asked questions and got great answers.  Place was quiet since weather today is cold and wet and windy.  Chose the Cannondale CX3 as recommended after discussion.  He set me up on his stand and adjusted and tweaked the bike for best fit.  Said he would readjust as necessary.  Bike is 2014 model so he knocked off 90 bucks, and I got all the accessories ten percent off too.  Nice guy, very competent.  I pick it up tomorrow morning and will have Ms LD drop me off Saturday and I will ride it home.  This area has built out a lot more bike paths in the past few years, some really excellent trails.  Got some bike shorts with gel and also felt the saddle fit to bones.  Seems ok, and shop owner said he would trade out saddles if I did not like this one.  Also got gel gloves, a new helmet, a slick odo/speedo, side stand and chain lube.  May get a jersey when it gets warmer.  

So yeah more cardio and core and having a nice bike will motivate me.  

Here it is:



Pretty thing. Bikes have changed a lot since the last time I bought one in 1984.

Online Chuck in Indiana

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Re: bicycle for 60 year old, and health issues
« Reply #29 on: January 23, 2015, 05:19:29 PM »
Attaboy..
Quote
Bikes have changed a lot since the last time I bought one in 1984.
Oh, yeah....
Chuck in (Elwood) Indiana/sometimes SoCal

02 Scura RC
87 AeroLario
95 Skorpion tour
 
I think senility is going to be a fairly smooth transition for me..

 

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