All the Great Cyclists are Fifty Nine
...or, how I had a better year on the Bike than Merckx.
For the last ten years as I have become ever more engaged with cycling and touring. I have challenged myself to keep up with better and often younger riders. I still prefer my fifty year old riders but get great satisfaction out of riding well and surprising younger riders. I have managed to improve my cycling performance steadily every year since turning fifty. It was only in my mid forties that I started to ride seriously, dropping the chain and lock, getting decent gear and tight pants. A vital piece of the gear included a speedometer, really a small on board computer that keeps all kinds of data about any ride and enables me to measure my progress. I also ride a regular Thursday night training ride which over the years has attracted evermore younger and better riders. Eight years ago we usually averaged between 18 and 19 mph on this training ride over a rolling twenty five miles distance. About six years ago I finally broke the twenty mile barrier for an hour ride. It was just three years ago that we broke 20 mph average routinely on the regular training rides. This last spring we often got up to a score of riders, and by early summer we started to come in with averages over 21 mph. This new rung of achievement must prove the axiom that we were not getting older, we were getting better.
I then went to