You Forget How to Ride a Bike? Didn’t Think So. 8 Reasons to Start Cycling Again.

For 40+ guys seeking a “decades-long” plan for physical fitness, incorporating cycling into your routine is a great thing.

But even though we all remember how to ride a bike, sometimes it doesn’t feel so simple. There are impediments to getting back in the saddle.

With summer here, let’s take a quick look at ALL the reasons why you should pick this up again, man. And let’s discuss how to overcome the impediments, to get you out there.


For 40+ guys seeking a “decades-long” plan for physical fitness, incorporating cycling into your routine is a great thing.

But even though we all remember how to ride a bike, sometimes it doesn’t feel so simple. There are impediments to getting back in the saddle.

With summer here, let’s take a quick look at ALL the reasons why you should pick this up again, man. And let’s discuss how to overcome the impediments, to get you out there.


There are so many good reasons to ride a bike:

  1. Gets you out of the house, office or gym…and into nature.
  2. Low-impact on feet, ankles and knees compared to running and some other sports and workouts.
  3. Great way to have a destination-oriented workout. You can bike somewhere a lot more distant than you can reach on foot!
  4. Can combine “fitness” and “transportation” to help save time, money (and the planet).
  5. Simple to vary intensity between easy and hard…to fit your current fitness level, how you feel that day, or for interval training where you go easy and hard in the same workout.
  6. Great family-and-friends activity. You can ride with your spouse, friends or kids. For little kids, you can use a bike trailer, a rear-mounted little-kid seat, or a “trail-a-bike that has its own seat, handlebars and a third wheel. Trying going up a hill with one of those, plus the kid, behind you. That’s a workout, dude.
  7. Growth of bike paths and bike lanes in many places makes it even easier, safer and more enjoyable.
  8. Fun. Who doesn’t like riding a bike?

The logic is simple and powerful. You need to keep getting cardio endurance exercise, multiple times a week, for years and decades. There are a lot of ways to do this,but some of the main candidate activities are ones you’ll periodically need a break from. Or at least, you’ll need to balance them with other things.

This is true of running and High-Intensity Interval Training (HITT) — each of which has an “overdo” risk built in. And elliptical trainers or other indoors cardio machines will start to suffocate your soul after a while, brother. Swimming is GREAT, but you’ll want part of your routine to work lower-body strength a bit more. And as much as I espouse it (and do it 1-2 x per week), swimming laps is not that fun….

So: cycling is a natural thing to have in your mix.


So why do only a relatively low percentage of guys regularly bike?

  • It seems expensive (if you need a new bike)
  • You’re not sure what kind of bike — this was a simpler decision “back when”
  • You need to know something about fixing flats and other maintenance
  • And for some of us (I’m one), you don’t want to wear the European Racing Team spandex suit, but are not sure what your alternative apparel should be

The “expensive” concern is one each guy needs to judge for himself. But I’ll point out (a) in general, our fitness is priceless and (b) compared to non-fitness things we spend money on, or other fitness-related things (especially expensive gyms or personal trainers), a non-fancy bike isn’t all that expensive.

All the other impediment / question areas are ones you can for-sure overcome. I’ve been looking around for the best “101” view to start or re-start cycling, addressing these issues. Here it is.


It really feels good to get started cycling again. I’d gone totally away from it for years, but a few years ago started mountain biking. More recently, I’ve also re-started on road biking. I can feel the benefits in leg strength and endurance…and the variety with running and swimming is welcome.

Plus, I’ve been seeing beautiful mountains-and-vineyards scenery I can reach within a reasonable-distance loop from my house. They don’t have THAT in the gym or the pool.

So think it over, man. And have a bias toward doing something about it. After all, you already know how to do this!


“We got one last chance to make it real. To trade in these wings on some wheels.”Thunder Road (Bruce Springsteen, – click to listen).


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High-Intensity Interval Program Reviews: Orange Theory Fitness

There’s a lot of buzz around High-Intensity Interval Training, a.k.a. “HIIT”. Research studies highlight its effectiveness and time-efficiency for fitness development and calorie burning. New HIIT-centric gym concepts are being heavily marketed.

HITT interests me because of its inherent fitness benefits, and because it often combines endurance and strength work in an intense way.

I’ve started checking out HITT gym concepts and at-home workout programs, to add HITT into my own mix and also share findings via OlderBeast. This is the first of several reviews, starting with Orange Theory Fitness (“OTF” for short here).

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For Fast, Clear Results: Try This 10-15 Minute “Yoga Tonic” Each Morning


1. Are you mentally sold on the idea of yoga, but just not able to do it much because of other fitness and life priorities?

In my case, I’m ultra-sold, but I still only do a full yoga practice once a week. I don’t want to displace other workouts or my rest day. But I know I’m missing out on some of yoga’s benefits from this infrequency (especially the flexibility benefit). 

2. Do you feel sometimes feel stiff and sluggish when you get out of bed in the morning? I do.

For both of these reasons, I started doing this 10-15 minute mini-yoga practice most mornings.

I’ve noticed clear improvements in my flexibility and ability to really nail and hold some key poses. And it reliably limbers up and energizes me, too. 

If you’re a seldom-yoga guy, this will bring you (physical and also mental) benefits as a standalone habit. And if you do longer-form yoga practices with some regularity but it’s not feeling like “enough,” this consistent short-form habit will set you up for better performance when you do spend longer on the mat.

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Owed to Yourself: 6-Week Plan for Guys to Give Yoga a Fair Shake

Among 40+ guys who don’t do yoga (which is to say, among most 40+ guys), I think there are three reactions when I tout yoga in OlderBeast articles.

1. Inspired to try it. Man, I hope there have been at least a few of these…please?

2. Tuning me out. Kind of like the grown-ups in the old Charlie Brown TV specials – blah blah-blah blah.

3. Feeling somewhat persuaded, and a little motivated. But not enough to overcome remaining hesitancy or inertia.

You in Reaction mode #3? If so, this is for you, dude.

Here’s a step-by-step, no-commitments way for you to figure out more about yoga, try it, and decide if it’s for you. This envisions a 4 to 6 week period, after which you can “fish or cut bait” on the whole topic of yoga and you. 

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How to Overcome “That Sluggish Feeling” When It Threatens Your Workout Plan

There are a bunch of reasons why you might NOT work out today. Some are good, and many are not-so-good. Of all possible reasons, the one I really hate works like this.

1. You plan to work out that day. Then as the planned time nears, you start to feel a physical and/or mental sluggishness. Nothing dramatic, but you just don’t feel like working out. You start to flirt with the idea of taking the day off, considering various possible justifications.

2. But rather than explicitly, decisively declaring a day off – sometimes you need one, even if unplanned – you let minutes tick by without moving toward your workout OR deciding not to. Deep down, you might know what you’re doing, but you don’t admit it to yourself.

3. Then all of a sudden, voila, it’s “too late” for your workout. You missed the window of time you had before your next work, family or personal obligation. Even though you caused this, you don’t feel glad about the “can’t workout now” reality. You immediately feel like you’ve let yourself down.

This ever happen to you?  If so, you just fell victim to That Sluggish Feeling (“TSF”).  

I’ve devised a new response to TSF when it strikes. I don’t seek to move directly from sluggishness to exercise. Instead, I do a short, easy “bridge” activity in-between, to change my energy and get me into a better frame-of-mind to decide if I’m really, intentionally going to skip that workout. Here’s how it works.

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