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Keeping "fit" sans riding
 

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April
Joined: 13 Dec 2003
Posts: 6453
Location: Westchester/NYC

8/10/18 1:38 PM

Keeping "fit" sans riding

No, I'm not quitting cycling.

But I'm definitely not riding as much as before, nor nearly as hard. There're simply many other things I'd rather use the time to do instead. I still enjoy the time I am on the bike. Just that I don't miss "not riding". Don't feel like I "must" ride any more. For a while, I thought it's just a temporary diversion I'm taking. But now, I'm enjoying all the other things I'm doing enough that I don't see myself going "back" to riding century after century all summer long any more.

Not riding as frequently nor regularly has its drawbacks. One being I don't climb as well as I'm not as fit in both cardio and quad strength. That limitation I'm willing to put up with.

The other is more serious. I don't sleep and eat as well when I don't ride for any extended period of time, like several weeks no riding. And in general, just feeling a bit more lethargic and less motivated.

I've long ago come to the conclusion I need to keep a certain base level of physical activity to stay more or less "fit" and "well" (the two seems being more or less the same thing for my body). In the past, that was automatically fulfilled by riding lots.

In the winter, I ski. And on years I don't ski lots, I go to the gym & pool to make up for the slack. But in the summer, that's not too appealing.

I know staying fit is a general topic for all of us past the middle age. But as a long time cyclist, I suddenly found myself struggling to find fun sporting alternatives to cycling that would give me similar fitness benefits.

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Sparky
Joined: 08 Dec 2003
Posts: 16861
Location: Portland, OR

8/10/18 4:04 PM

We do casual frisbee golf occasionally.

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April
Joined: 13 Dec 2003
Posts: 6453
Location: Westchester/NYC

8/10/18 4:40 PM

It’s the “occasionally” part that is partly to blame...

I do kayak “occasionally” and bike a little more frequent than “occasionally”. But those “occasional” activities are not quite cutting it in terms of fitness maintenance.

For better or worse, biking takes time to work up to the intensity that gives me the health benefits. Kayaking is even worse in that regard. Although I actually enjoy kayaking more, partly because I haven’t done it as much so it feels more “fresh”.

I’ve been reluctant to admit but the truth is I’m bored with riding the same old same old roads around where I live. I’ve managed to mix it up a bit by driving up to an hr to ride in other places. But that adds time pre and post ride. I’m looking for other things that gets my heart rate up and muscle slightly sore in a couple hrs after work, or 1/2 a day on the weekend. So that I can do that more frequently than just “occasionally”...

Basically, an “outdoor gym” that doesn’t feel like a chore after a couple tries.

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daddy-o
Joined: 12 Apr 2004
Posts: 3235
Location: Springfield

8/10/18 4:46 PM

I did a search for "contra nyc" and there were plenty of hits. This one had the best photograph. It may be the most social activity you will ever participate in, very welcoming of beginners.

http://www.brooklyncontra.org/

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Sparky
Joined: 08 Dec 2003
Posts: 16861
Location: Portland, OR

8/10/18 4:47 PM

"I’ve been reluctant to admit but the truth is I’m bored with riding the same old same old roads around where I live."

You may have read a few of us say going and getting lost out on the bike is enjoyable. I guess we all find repetition of route a bore.

Unless you do hill repeats, that kinda changes what you can and do perceive sucking wind in zone four etc.

If you really want a cardio workout, basket ball and tennis with active good player will keep you in zone 4. Tennis you may get more breaks. Both I'd say with knee and ankle 'wear' can be risky though...


Last edited by Sparky on 8/10/18 5:18 PM; edited 1 time in total

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dan emery
Joined: 11 Jan 2004
Posts: 6075
Location: Maine

8/10/18 4:57 PM

Tennis?

IIRC you were a serious badminton player, so I expect you could pick up tennis pretty easily if you haven't tried it. You need a partner of course, but I expect in Westchester there are plenty of opportunities. If you're playing singles at a decent level, it's a great workout.

Running of course is an alternative, but I think you've tried that.

Or you could get 2 Dalmatians and take them for long walks - that's a whole body workout. But you risk a broken shoulder if they encounter a skunk...:)

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Sparky
Joined: 08 Dec 2003
Posts: 16861
Location: Portland, OR

8/10/18 5:35 PM

What about competitive ping pong. Small foot print, but crazy cardio in motion...

Where is Sandiway when you need him? ;)

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April
Joined: 13 Dec 2003
Posts: 6453
Location: Westchester/NYC

8/10/18 7:29 PM

All very good ideas

Badminton/tennis/ping pong

I would have continued with badminton, but all the clubs play 100% exclusively doubles. A lot of quick hits and no need to run. Not nearly as cardio as I would have preferred. Nor as health beneficial. As I’m currently suffering some vision issue (early cataract), I don’t do too well with the quick moving birdie.

Similar issue with tennis and ping pong. Not enough running around and too much quick hit short rallies.

I actually prefer to run AFTER something! Like, a ball. But struggling to find game partners who like yhe same. Most older players prefer to play short rallies but won’t chase the ball when it’s out of reach. The younger more agile players tend to be very competitive and want more serious commitments than I’m ready for.

Though ping pong might work. I’ll ask around as there’s a table at work. I just need to motivate a few of my coworkers to play together. Unfortunately, I’m not a good enough player so I don’t quite get the full body workout as I can get in a badminton game.

Dance:

I might look into that too. One of my biking buddy is very much into social dances. I don’t know which kind though.

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April
Joined: 13 Dec 2003
Posts: 6453
Location: Westchester/NYC

8/10/18 7:52 PM

BTW, I’m more desperate this summer because my office got moved to the most congested part of downtown Manhattan, making for very unappealing bike commute. Till I find a better substitute, I may just have to bite the bullet and bike to work...

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Sparky
Joined: 08 Dec 2003
Posts: 16861
Location: Portland, OR

8/10/18 10:44 PM

"I don’t know which kind though."

Ballroom;quickstep, jive, paso doble, and Argentine tango ought to be exuberant enough. [and then some]

Be careful what you wish for. ;)


Elaine mentioned Zumba Class, Cardio exercise dance reps/combos.

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Pat Clancy
Joined: 13 Jan 2004
Posts: 1350
Location: Manchester, CT

8/11/18 6:00 PM

Pickleball!

Pickleball has been a roaring success with older folk due to the fact that doubles can be played relatively static. But played with younger folk, or as singles, it can be quite aerobic. It's also great since you can achieve a degree of competence fairly quickly. The USAPA web site, as well as others, can help you find places to play. Most groups welcome newcomers and there's no need to bring a partner. In our group I play with a different teammate almost every game.

See: https://www.usapa.org/

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April
Joined: 13 Dec 2003
Posts: 6453
Location: Westchester/NYC

8/11/18 7:17 PM

There’s pickle ball in my complex. And one of my former riding buddy plays. But they almost always play doubles. Not enough running around for what I have in mind. Same problem just like in my badminton club.

I would have love to play some casual basketball or soccer. It’s a lot more interesting to chase after a ball than to just run x miles. But the last time I asked around for soccer, they want me to commit to playing tournaments! Add to that my boss is having his SECOND knee operation from playing soccer. It’s all too much.

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Nick Payne
Joined: 10 Jan 2004
Posts: 2394
Location: Canberra, Australia

8/12/18 1:37 AM

A few years back I had to take about a year off the bike with sural nerve problems in my lower leg. However, I'd been doing yoga on a daily basis for almost 50 years, and weight training 2-3 times a week for almost as long, and I was able to continue those activities at a slightly increased level over that period and didn't seem to lose much fitness or put on any weight. The latter is probably due more to genetics than to any restraint on my part - my father was a beanpole his entire life and I've inherited his genes in that respect.

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ErikS
Joined: 19 May 2005
Posts: 8310
Location: Slowing boiling over in the steamy south, Global Warming is real

8/12/18 8:26 AM

personal experience

Run short distances, 3k or so on a treadmill and then go lift weights. Do the run prior to the lift.

I was off my bike for a while also and found this combo good for some form or fitness. The short runs turn up your engine and strengthen joints/muscles, while the lift builds core and upper body strength that helps in everyday life.

The other exercise I do daily. Push aways.


Push your ass away from the table, we eat way to much. I use MyFitness Pal on my my phone to track my intake vs output and it makes a huge difference. I don't think it is perfect, I think it over estimates the kCals burned for many exercises. If I burned and ate what it reflects I would be 15lb lighter right now.

I cut out extra food and got serious about exercise again in April of this year and have taken off 20lb of fat and replaced 10 of that with muscle. I feel better as a result. The extra muscle weight does not help my cycling but it helps with my other sports.

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April
Joined: 13 Dec 2003
Posts: 6453
Location: Westchester/NYC

8/12/18 10:52 AM

I don't have a weight issue (except for being "under-weight" according to some flawed formula). In fact, when I don't exercise, I don't have appetite and starts to lose weight. And in general feel really crappy.

But I found it difficult to hit the gym in the summer (our summer, which is usually nice and pleasant).

So far, I've only managed to Citibike home after work. But that's getting really old after a while. Especially now my office is in the middle of some congested streets. Also I don't get much upper body exercise biking. Some days, I do a bit of kayaking after work, or hit the outdoor pool on days I work from home. That feels good, just not enough. I would like to do something for at least an hour, or even two, after work for maybe twice a week. I could continue to bike in Central Park. But really could use some alternatives. (did I mention I'm easily bored?)

It's particularly worse when we have a couple of weekend of bad weather. This this weekend! Then the mid-week activities become really critical. I'm desperate enough to even consider running!

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dan emery
Joined: 11 Jan 2004
Posts: 6075
Location: Maine

8/12/18 4:28 PM

Blast from past

Erik says "push your ass away from the table." My college basketball coach said "the best exercise is pushing yourself away from the table." That was a while ago.

I'm resolving to do that. I've put on a few lbs with a reduced activity level due to my various issues. Now I think I can begin building up the exercise again, and will try to reduce intake as well.

But as April said, that's not her issue.

Now that my shoulder and knee are working reasonably I'll revisit trying to get some sea kayak basics.

Mowing my large lawn is a decent workout, but I guess you don't have that "opportunity" April.

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April
Joined: 13 Dec 2003
Posts: 6453
Location: Westchester/NYC

8/12/18 5:09 PM

Dan!

I don't have a lawn to mow. No wood to split either. The most strenuous household chore I have is vacuuming. I suppose I can power wash my deck. But I'm not sure that counts as cardio workout.

Yesterday was a complete washout. Today, I had plan to swim. But the weather was iffy (thunderstorm brewing) so they close the (outdoor) pool. :(

So this is the week that I didn't bike (ok, a 10 minute ride to lunch), didn't kayak, didn't swim... And with the forecast still more thunderstorm on the first half of next week, it's making me really ... claustrophobic!

The only productive thing I did this weekend, was discovering the warped rim sidewall! :( (see other thread)

I wish I could take that old advice of "push yourself away from the table" more literally. That is, push myself AWAY from that desk (job)!

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Matthew Currie
Joined: 11 Jan 2004
Posts: 769
Location: Vermont

8/12/18 6:09 PM

Owing to shoulder injuries among other things I'm not doing it as much as I used to, but my answer would always be swimming.

Of course that's easy to say when I have good swimming facilities handy, and a lake in the summer. Harder if you don't. But swimming is good exercise, good for your aerobics, and low impact, and you can pretty much decide for yourself how hard you want to go.

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daddy-o
Joined: 12 Apr 2004
Posts: 3235
Location: Springfield

8/13/18 9:38 AM

I was wondering what became of the woodsplitter project, then I saw the other thread the next day.

About the dancing: These are from old European barn dances. The Contra (wikipedia) that I linked is particularly easy to follow because of how they present it. It's a repetition of a pattern. The patterns for the night are worked out ahead of the night by the 'caller.' I'm assuming you didn't do square dancing in elementary school. They work through the steps before each song, and if someone misses a step during the song the partners absorb the oversight and it just keeps going - so don't let "not knowing the steps" be a barrier. Plus Contra is a pretty good aerobic workout, everyone works up a sweat. New York state is hotspot because of its northern European roots.

Dances like Sparky mentioned also have classroom environments. Your parks department probably has group classes for different skill levels. Studios also have group classes but sometimes they turn out to be flypaper for expensive individual instruction, they gotta pay the rent.

Also, group classes and Contra don't require a partner, lots of singles, plenty of couples, no gangs.

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Sparky
Joined: 08 Dec 2003
Posts: 16861
Location: Portland, OR

8/13/18 10:35 AM

The ballroom stuff can be fun/work/rewarding to get good at. We saw a 71 year old gal several rounds into AmericaGotTalent these last few episodes and still not eliminated.

Her fitness and frankly her tone and body condition is that of a 40 year old arguably. Granted the youger partner is doing the lion share with the lifts et al.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nGQl487_-lc

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daddy-o
Joined: 12 Apr 2004
Posts: 3235
Location: Springfield

8/13/18 11:15 AM

Sometimes a pro or ex-pro like Jerry Rice is quoted after DWTS appearances "hardest thing ever did" type quotes. I saw on PTI the other week Jerry Rice is thinking of coming back. Born 1962. They say he's still formidable in practice. But the takeaway was "but that's practice."

Hey, let's hear it for Tiger Woods! Man, that putt on 11, too bad the gallery didn't just go quiet and stare real hard at it, or maybe a collective leap.

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