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Thread: Entering the last "quarter" of my riding career?

  1. #1
    Nickname: Droid
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    Entering the last "quarter" of my riding career?

    Got to thinking at lunch today. I, like many I bet, like to make comments like:

    "Been riding for over 42 years now."

    "Got at least 250,000 miles of riding under my butt."

    Kinda nice to gloat over those comments. But, it struck me, now that I'm 55 I probably have at most, 30 years of riding left in me? More or less, maybe less! Crap, I'm into the "decreasing years left to ride" side of my life. Each ride brings me closer to the last ride, in more ways than one.

    Makes me think of savoring each and every ride all that more. As we age time seems to speed up and pass much more quickly. Could be in ten fifteen years I'll be saying, "where'd it all go??!!"

    Kind of like loved ones. NOW is the time to express yourself to them, what they mean to you, how they impact your life, how they've enriched your life, how its time to let go and enjoy the ride!

    I am going more and more by the old Irish saying, "We're not here for a long time, but we're here for a good time!"

  2. #2
    Old man in the mountains osbornk's Avatar
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    I'm 65 and it is indeed flying by. When the weather permits, riding takes priority when it used to be only after I finished "chores" (mowing,etc). I appreciate riding more than I did in the past because I know it won't last forever.
    'You can say what you want about the South, but I almost never hear of anyone wanting to retire to the North.

  3. #3
    NC Piedmont Rider ncstephen's Avatar
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    I so relate to this. I will turn 60 this year. I have had more years with my wonderful wife than we will have left. Where did the time go?

    As for riding, after years of riding my wife asked us to be focused on parenting (and at her heart felt request of wanting to minimize risk so we both would be here) eased off riding. Returned to riding with it being my personal main means of transport in the fall of 08. (90,000 miles now). So I am looking at my dad. A sportmans and fisherman. He had a few surgeries in 2012 and is just now getting around again. I am buying the boat from him this month so there is one in the family to maintain that. He is 81 and did his usually outdoor things until 2011. So that gives me maybe another 20 years. Can I maintain the alertness and agility to be a competent motorcyclist that long? Physically I started doing a bootcamp program a little over a year ago. It makes a difference and one that I hope I can maintain. I started doing track days a few years ago and love them. I have been encouraged to consider club racing but there are too many finite issues to address. Money and Time are spoken for by the responsibilities gladly assumed in life to this point. Then there is the issue of healing when hurt. I haven't really been hurt in long time and don't relish the thought of what it would look like now versus at 30 yrs of age. So still I am exploring some more directions with the bike and planning on having fun with it. I am not writing off things but just realize a window to do things is beginning to close. With all that said, I hope to learn how well I can do on an RC51 at the track this year. GRIN (Money not there for an S1000rr).


    I do look back and consider what 60 year olds were doing when I was young and I don't remember them doing things like skiing, motorcycling, bicycling, etc. I know they were but they weren't a part of my circle. I look around now and see many folks younger than I that act and seem so much older. There are friends whom we have to make allowances for and realize if with do something with Tom Sally Bill etc, they cannot do some things anymore while if we want to do kayaking or bicycling etc, other friends can still do that.

    Life continues to be rich, just changing. Enjoy each part of yours.
    NCS
    03 K 1200RS (Black is Best)
    03 Honda RC51
    74 Honda CB750 K4

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by ANDYVH View Post
    ... now that I'm 55 I probably have at most, 30 years of riding left in me? ...
    Hate to burst your bubble, but there aren't many 85-yr-olds out there riding motorcycles. Realistically, you might have 20 years left at most. If you stay healthy and are lucky.

    But I'm older than you and I find that age is like a roll of toilet paper ... the closer you get to the end the faster it goes.

    I can't do the riding I did only 10 years ago. Nowadays the tirps are a little shorter (one week instead of two, for instance), each day is a little shorter (400 miles instead of 600, for instance) and the speeds are a little shower (60 instead of 75, for instance). When I run into bad weather, I find a cafe or a motel and sit it out; used to hunker down inside the Aerostich and ride through it. But one thing hasn't changed: my love of travel and seeing new places and meeting new people.
    Royce
    On the coast of Kansas
    2012 F800ST

  5. #5
    jeepinbanditrider
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    250k in 42 years. Ride more post less

    J/K. Don't worry about what you have left just go out and use it to the best of your abilities.

  6. #6
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    "Been riding for over 42 years now."
    "Got at least 250,000 miles of riding under my butt."
    Kinda nice to gloat over those comments. But, it struck me, now that I'm 55 I probably have at most, 30 years of riding left in me?
    Andy, my stats are similar to yours. Took my first ride at 13. About a year ago I made the decision to make my last trip the same route as my first trip. Some time after finishing high school (Back in 1975 or 76) I took my R75/5 to Nova Scotia. I hope that I am lucky enough to be able to make this my final trip. I am sure it will be a bitter-sweet trip.

  7. #7
    Mars needs women! 35634's Avatar
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    I'll be 60 this year, never really thought about it impacting my riding. Thought even less about years left. I don't think I'll start now. That said, my new sidecar added a whole new dimension, lovin' it
    1987 K75S
    Original litter
    Original owner
    2012 Ural Gear Up

  8. #8
    Kbiker BCKRider's Avatar
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    I have a close friend, now 70, who had polio while still in high school. "Probably never walk again," was the prediction then. Well, he exercised like crazy and - even though he lost most of the muscle in one leg and 50% in the other - had many years of backpacking, bicycling, duck hunting and fishing (his passion) including wading many rivers in the Queen Charlotte's. Though backpacking, cycling and duck hunting are now memories for him (as is wading strong rivers) he still fishes like crazy. Every year when we fish lakes out of his Sportspal canoe, I wonder how the hell he is going to get out of the boat. With care, a lot of thought, and sheer determination! For more than 50 years he has had to think about every step just walking down a sidewalk, so he is used to it, though every year it gets just a little bit harder.

    The moral, I believe, is don't be quick to give up an activity if you still love it. For many of us that means shorter days in terms of both miles and hours and perhaps a bit slower speeds. Fine! You are doing this to ENJOY THE ACTIVITY. No need to compete with anyone else or even your former self.
    Doug
    1992 K100RS

  9. #9
    2011 R1200RT ka5ysy's Avatar
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    Interesting thread. I am about to turn 64 and am very active. Ride almost daily, scuba dive regularly as an instructor, teach MSF courses necessitating a high level of conditioning to dodge newbies and stand in the heat all day. I recently lost my mother to dementia at age 89, and after watching that 5 year slow crash, I know absolutely that there are worse things than death.

    Staying active, maintaining a health regimen and getting routine medical checkup are critical to my activity level. I know at some point all the activity has to slow down a bit, but I will not go out quietly, and probably will not go out in a hospital bed, and that is ok . One of the Medical Motorcycling articles in "MCN" recently pointed out riding a motorcycle activates a whole lot of areas in the brain than are normally active, and that probably has very good effects, so the moral is clear: ride more

    Anybody up for some rappelling ? Did this a couple of weeks ago down in Mexico. Still fun to do after a lot of years :

    Doug, 2011 R1200RT Polar Metallic
    MSF #127350 NAUI #36288

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Royce View Post
    Hate to burst your bubble, but there aren't many 85-yr-olds out there riding motorcycles. Realistically, you might have 20 years left at most. If you stay healthy and are lucky.

    But I'm older than you and I find that age is like a roll of toilet paper ... the closer you get to the end the faster it goes.

    I can't do the riding I did only 10 years ago. Nowadays the tirps are a little shorter (one week instead of two, for instance), each day is a little shorter (400 miles instead of 600, for instance) and the speeds are a little shower (60 instead of 75, for instance). When I run into bad weather, I find a cafe or a motel and sit it out; used to hunker down inside the Aerostich and ride through it. But one thing hasn't changed: my love of travel and seeing new places and meeting new people.
    Royce,

    Reading the above...is like hearing myself ...darn near to the letter. When I was 55, old age was a ways off. Now @ 63...it seems to be just around the corner

    Ron

  11. #11
    Minnesota Nice! braddog's Avatar
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    Started riding motorcycles at 13, stopped at 21 for 19 years, started again at 40. It's been 13 years since I started riding again.

    At 53 years old, when I look at the numbers, I know that I've got a few more years behind me than I do ahead of me. No big deal. My brain is kind of stuck at 25, so no big deal.

    How many more years of riding? I have no idea. There have been times within the last 2 years when I thought I was done. It had nothing to do with my physical or mental ability, rather it had to do with the fact that my children are all grown, and my wife and I now have the opportunity to do more stuff together. The thing is, she does not now, nor will she ever, share my interest in motorcycling; either as a passenger or as a rider. It's just not here thing at all. That said, I'm not quite ready yet. I just enjoy it too much. But, I suspect that I'll hang up the helmet long before I'm limited physically.
    -----------------------------------------
    Brad D. - Member #105766
    '77 R100RS - Black Beauty (big pipe, baby!)
    '94 R1100RS - Sylvia

  12. #12
    Nickname: Droid
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    I LOVE this comment posted above, I quote, "age is like a roll of toilet paper ... the closer you get to the end the faster it goes." So I guess it is best to "enjoy the roll before it's "wiped out?" I agree too, that it's wishful thinking on my part that I'll be riding another 30 years. But then again, consider Aldy Kellerman, riding at 84. If she can do it then perhap I can too.

    Thanks everyone for the responses. Kind of surprised to see the number of responses. But then again, considering the demographics of our age group and the cycle choice we've made, I'm not too surprised. But the comments as to activity and youth of heart, mind, and body, are in large part due to what we accept for ourselves.

    Me, I keep quite active: downhill ski, snowmobile, ice-bike racing, dirt bike riding, road bikes, MSF instructor, bicyclist (road bikes and self built recumbents), self taught cycle wrench, all my own home repairs/updates, sing in two chorus groups. Still plan to get trained to scuba dive. Maybe learn to fly some day.

  13. #13
    Rally Rat
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    Enjoy every minute you have left After over 62 years of riding, I am in the process of giving it up. Health and physical acuity are slipping, and I want to go out without any major hurts. Just recovering from rotator cuff tear and ultimately surgery caused by hefting a R1200 R up on the center stand. Am now trying to sell the bike and a lifelong accumulation of stuff...camping, riding,,,packing, etc, etc.

    Tom Barhart
    Port St Lucie, FL

  14. #14
    Registered User f14rio's Avatar
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    ya wanna ride longer, ya gotta stay in shape.

    don't run so fast anymore but i run hard (lotta hills and sand). i'll be 67 this year (got my ticket in '62).. still fly, snowboard,wakeboard, shoot and ride. (oh yeah, a bit of 'boom boom' once in a while, too).
    ya don't wear out, ya rust out.

    that's beach sand between 1.25 and 2.0 miles... note the elevation changes commencing at 2.5 miles:

    http://connect.garmin.com/activity/259375596

    hey, at my age its okay to be an obnoxious old blow hard.

    8365928074_aef2cd27e8_o.jpg
    Last edited by f14rio; 01-09-2013 at 09:49 PM.
    "Enemy fighters at 2 o'clock!...Roger, What should i do until then?"

    2010 r1200r, 2009 harley crossbones, 2008 triumph/sidecar, 1970 norton commando 750

  15. #15
    Nickname: Droid
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    +1 on that! I think riding, and continuing to ride may be the motivation that finally gets my butt exercizing regularly. Knock on wood, I have never had any back troubles. Which I feel is due to my vanity of holding in my gutt for many many years. Underneath the "extra" on the belly side I'm sure my core has helped me for many years. But its time to treat myself better and get in shape so I can continue to do the things I love (especially the boom-boom).

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