By Nigel Wynn
The majority of us starting cycling at a young age, back when we had boundless energy and everything seemed to hurt a little bit less.
As you carry on riding through your 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s and beyond, some people's appreciation and perception of their two-wheeled pursuit changes. For others, cycling simply makes them feel young again, and they don't feel any different at 60 than they did at 16.
We recently asked Cycling Weekly readers how they thought cycling changes as you get older. Here are a selection of answers, brought to you in association with Decathlon.
How do you think cycling changes as you get older? Let us know in the comments section below.
When I was six I would jump off my bike at speed and let it fly onto the ground without a care in the world. Now I'm 36 if it looks like I'm falling, I try and protect the bike by cushioning its blow with my body.
I am 70 years young this year and have just started to use my bike again. I love cycling but I have found it hard work this time around. Also, my balance seems to have gone a bit awry so perhaps there are changes as you get older. I still love my bike, though.
It's not just the bike that creaks.
I think you mellow out a bit. Ripping it and hitting gnarly stuff super-fast isn't as important as enjoying the ride and the sights this incredible planet has to offer. And, in my case, has become something I can share with my children. Over time I have become less concerned with riding the newest tech and more concerned with just riding.
Not sure it does as we're still all out for the same reason, which is to enjoy ourselves.
You realise that figure-hugging Lycra perhaps will never be your thing ever again.
You politely tell the fast lads to keep going (when they stop to chat). Let me not be holding you up… and off they speed while I enjoy the scenery. Last Sunday, I noticed a young lad coming towards me trying to read my jacket which read "Passo Stelvio". Bet he hasn't done it, I thought to myself.
You hold up more traffic as you weave side to side going up a hill.
When I was a 16 I couldn't afford a bike and had to build one from scratch with second-hand parts, taught me a lot about how a bike actually worked. 50 years later, the bikes today are so much easier to build and keep running, and are a pleasure to ride. Unfortunately, I have noticed that a lot of people just don't know how to complete a basic service on their $10,000 jewel.
I'm living proof of that hoary old chestnut: 'the older I get, the better I was'.
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