Video: How To Ride Until You're 70 & Beyond with Ben Plenge from the Strength Factory

Jan 16, 2024 at 7:05
by Ben Plenge  

Do you want to be a Rad-Grandad, or Gnarly Nanna when you're older?

If so, then you need to watch this video. It's going to tell you exactly how you can keep riding until you're 70 years old, and maybe even longer...

If you found that interesting and useful then hit the link to receive your free training guide for riders over 40:
thestrengthfactory.uk/over-40s-free-guide

Thanks for watching.

Ben

thestrengthfactory.uk

Author Info:
MTB-Strength-Factory avatar

Member since Mar 25, 2014
26 articles

121 Comments
  • 173 11
 Well, I'm 70 and will turn 71 this year. I ride as much or more than my peer riders who are in their 40s. The only thing special is to just get on the bike. I did need to come to grips with slower speeds, slightly slower reflexes, and on some days less stamina. Instead of stopping, I opted for a pedal-assist eBike for those days.
  • 13 2
 Nice one mate. Keep up the good work.
  • 9 0
 there are many active 70 year olds, when I’m 70 I hope my health permits me to do what you do, you are one of the lucky ones
  • 14 2
 As someone turning 40 this year, I've come to grips that embracing slower speeds in higher risk areas will be the ticket to being able to keep riding into my 70s! Having had a non riding related ACL injury made me realize that sometimes the risks of absolute speed aren't worth the possible downtime of injury.
  • 30 0
 My riding buddies are all over 65. Two of us are 70 and 3 of them have replacement parts (knees and hips). We ride in the woods at least 3 times per week. We do not plan on gving this up anytime soon. Of course it helps that we've been doing this for 30+ years and have kept up our skills on the mtb.
  • 31 0
 Right behind you at 68. I know my "window" for riding the good stuff will close at some point, but it isn't today or tomorrow.
  • 13 0
 @bedren: this is really the ticket, having the skills and experience when you’re younger, taking care of yourself, and staying actively consistently through the years.

For all you young folks reading this, do yourself a favor, don’t becomes desk jockey and think tomorrow is another day, procrastination is a death sentence.

There is no excuse not to ride, that’s just you rationalizing your choices.

Just do it!
  • 61 13
 To the three people that downvoted the top post, likely as the word "ebike" was used.

You need help. Desperately. This is a gentleman who's been able to keep enjoying their hobby due to a niche product. That product may not be for you, but you may need to seriously look yourself in the mirror and ask; "why do I hate people innocently enjoying their lives so much?"

Keep riding man, you rock and anything that keeps you loving life is awesome. Here's hoping for another 70 years!
  • 37 20
 @sherbet: those people are super hardcore bro’s. They are either 16 or act like they’re 16. I’m 51 and love riding my ebike. Down vote away, losers.
  • 10 0
 I'm friends with a guy that just turned 70 (I'm 45) and he can just school everyone on the ride. Even makes the eBikers look like they can't ride up hills (which usually means they can't )J ust amazing ridiculous! He is legend at the Dog Park in San Clemente, CA.

He has been my inspiration guy ever since I first road with him a few years ago.
  • 5 0
 @sherbet: Agreed but to be fair, PB on mobile makes it quite easy to tap the wrong vote button.
  • 10 3
 What kind of losers would have downvoted your comment here is what I’m curious about, maybe ebike haters? Good for you, I hope to be riding for many decades to come (I’m in my early 40s).
  • 4 1
 @BermJunky: You are not a looser! One day I will most-likely will need one to keep up with my mind's expectations when my body starts to deteriorate as I get older.
  • 7 0
 I’m also nearly 40. The reason I don’t ride enough now is the same reason I won’t be physically able to ride in my 70s: I work too much. I’m wasting my existence but I’m set on changing that. Take heed, whippersnappers
  • 7 1
 @sherbet: At 68, I own a trailbike, a hardtail and an awesome e-bike. The trailbike is still 70% of my riding, but I love the e-bike for trail work, recovery days and riding with groups that are a whole generation younger than me, including my son, without compromising their ride. As cool as the e-bike is, I need/want to keep my pedaling fitness and enjoy riding in silence most of the time.
  • 9 1
 I'm also 71, 72 in July. Ride three times a week, rode today in fact. Everyone I ride with is at 15 years younger than me, but they want to ride with me. Like you, I've had to come to grips with slowing down, I no longer lead the rides like I used to, slower reflexes, etc.. But hey, I'm still riding, hiking, kayaking and even climbing occasionally. The secret??? Just get out and do it. You gots to keep moving. Its hat simple. Happy trails
  • 1 1
 @kwmtrumpet: who is this legend at san clemente??? Fastest old guy I know is Nick
  • 1 1
 @bikepark167: two legends in San Clemente, bravo Nick and Larry. I see my parents at 75 and I seriously doubt I will be riding at their age. I’ve come to terms with it and will spin on my trainer.
  • 2 1
 Awesome work!!! I hear you on the Ebike and the changes but it let's me still get out at 71. Keep it going!!!
  • 6 2
 @sherbet: ageism is a problem in cycling as in sports in general which needs more attention. Ebikes are not the core of prejudice its rather ones own negative attitude towards ageing and fear of dying
  • 1 1
 @jrcook: awesome. Great to hear mate.
  • 3 0
 I highly doubt the jackalopes that downvoted you are anywhere near your age, or even fitness.
  • 1 1
 Number one tip - never take fluoroquinolone antibiotics if you want to stay fit and healthy until old age. Trust me on that one
  • 66 3
 You don't stop riding because you get old, you get old because you stop riding.
  • 1 0
 Jah mon \m/
  • 29 1
 I ride with John, who is 79, I'm 74. We both are still riding black diamond trails although we do admit to periodically bike hiking some features. The way I figure it...when i finally get old...if all I can do is ride blue or green trails, I'll do a bunch of them in a day. The mind and body can age at different rates. For some, the mind ages quicker so they convince themselves their body is no longer capable. For a few, it's reversed. The mind pushes the slowly degrading body to keep achieving. This is what I know: When I finally "get old", I want to be like John...as should all of you.
  • 33 3
 TL;DW - just keep riding a lot until you're in your 70's
  • 26 1
 same - if I will fall over dead at 70 then it will be. If not I will keep on. 64 now.
  • 7 3
 Why not just ride the rest of your life indeed. Loads of people become older than 70 these days.
  • 4 1
 @cxfahrer: Yup, totally agree. Keep riding bikes until your body falls apart.
  • 26 2
 One of the very best things you can do for your long term fitness - get a town bike and use it instead of your car for local journeys. You'll be happier, fitter and financially better off. Cue the people who live 30miles from the nearest village and their home is surrounded by nothing but multi lane highways.
  • 7 2
 Or walk to places.
  • 30 3
 But I live 30 miles from my nearest village and my home is surrounded by nothing but multi lane highways.
  • 3 1
 @CantClimb: It’s hypothesised that lots of walking is a big factor in Japanese longevity. Riding a town bike serves the same purpose (motors are discouraged).
  • 4 17
flag scary1 (Jan 20, 2024 at 5:26) (Below Threshold)
 Some of us need to get things done while we’re awake.
  • 5 0
 Yeah, if you can sneak in extra doses of aerobic fitness and movement then that really adds up over the years.
  • 2 2
 @bigtim: if you only live once, will your seventy year old self respect that sentiment? Don’t live to regret the choices you made in your youth … there’s no going back for a redo.
  • 3 1
 I used to commute on a bike, I've been hit by cars too many times. I also witness about one cyclist a month get hit in warm months. Unfortunately bike commuting by me is bad for your long term health, I still do it, but it can't be my only form of transportation.
  • 3 1
 @scary1: Well, um, actually a pretty nice little Saturday, we're going to go to Home Depot. Yeah, buy some wallpaper, maybe get some flooring, stuff like that. Maybe Bed, Bath, & Beyond, I don't know, I don't know if we'll have enough time
  • 1 1
 @VtVolk: Frank the Tank
  • 1 0
 True, but it's better with a dirt jump bike, safer too.
  • 11 1
 All tips I try and follow. 66 now. I rode around 175 times last season. Some rides were to the gym and back. Last winter I cross country skied 65 days and alpine skied 25. Not to mention shovelling snow from my driveway. The most important thing for me is rest and recovery. I bought a fitness watch to help monitor that and it seems to help. Aging is inevitable. You will get slower. Injuries will be worse and take longer to heal from similar falls.
  • 13 1
 Mountain biking is a great way to get in touch with your inner child while injuring your outer adult.
  • 2 0
 Good one
  • 9 1
 Transition Patrol, Stanton Switch9er ti, Cotic BFEmax. 66 Sixty six Very beardy
  • 6 1
 I'm 43 and still can't grow a beard. Maybe that's the tip I'm missing. It's why I added one to the photo for the thumbnail! Ben
  • 2 1
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: I feel your pain buddy.

I have hopes though, my dad’s beard is slowly starting to show through. (He’s 67)
  • 3 1
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: ....well that may be a good thing? Lower testosterone?

Great video you have done there...nice idea and really nicely executed. an important topic as the population ages.

Today on the trail I stopped to help someone with a damaged chain (finally found my chain splitter in the depths of my pack) and one of the pack was a great woman in her late fifties - previously an ultra runner but then diagnosed with heart failure and has a de-fib - but this also talks to her e-bike so that as her heart rate increases, the bike kicks in with more power. Nice.
  • 6 1
 I started working out/racing my bike around 30yo. I’m 41 now and can’t see myself stopping.i did the tour divide last year, and also took up dirt jumping 2 years ago. I train 6 days a week and workout a decent squat/deadlift every winter.

Make or buy a plan and stick to it. Set long term and short term goals. My physical health is my mental heath so I prioritize it.

I love feeling strong and trim. As a former fat kid, it’s been fantastic to be in peak shape the last 10 years.
  • 2 1
 Trap bar deadlifts are awesome for carry over to cycling.
  • 6 1
 Specialized Enduro

Santa Cruz Bronson

Chromag Wideangle

62 & live on the North Shore

Ride, run & walk as much as I can

Not so beardy
  • 4 1
 I ride with a buddies who are 75 and 71. I am 58 and have trouble keeping up with the 75 year old on the ups! He was still riding Black diamond trails! The other buddy is a bit slower but still kicking it! I just hope I can do what they are doing at there age!
  • 7 1
 As with most things concerning aging, just don’t stop. Once you hit the couch it goes away pretty quickly.
  • 5 1
 100% mate.
  • 4 1
 52 here. 2 knee replacements, 1 shoulder replacement. Been riding since I learned. Never stopped. Tons of base miles as a bike commuter, plenty of Physio work 3x a week. Still get after it and routinely spank those 1/2 my age. I did give upon the big super booters, been there, that’s for the come ups. I’ve branched out and now I’m really stoked on long distance bikepacking trips. Really, just never stop. If it some point I’m totally fuct, there’s always e-bikes. Until then…..
  • 4 1
 Almost every rider I know does the absolutely minimum of off-bike training that they can. I love crossfit, olympic lifting, yoga and pilates. Pretty much anything that offers me a new way to operate my body is fair game. Riding bikes in an incredibly limited activity in terms or range, flexibility, power output, etc. It's the one I love best but if that's all I did I would fall apart pretty fast. People who don't take the time to broaden their fitness base will have their riding taken away from them eventually probably earlier than they would like.
  • 4 1
 I got my first mountain bike in 1984. However, I was unable to ride regularly when I was raising kids. Disappearing for hours on the weekend was not an option. When I was 50, I bought an Iron Horse full suspension trailbike. I fell (back) in love with the sport and have been riding about 5 times per week ever since. Now I am 64. I've had many injuries from falling off two wheels (dirt bikes, too). I heal much more slowly than I did in my youth. Consequently, I avoid coming off the bike. I didn't come off the bike in 2023, at least not violently. I hope for the same in 2024.
  • 4 1
 My father rode the entire west coast of South America when he was 72, all the way to the bottom. He followed that up by going across central Asia next. He did it all solo and camped on his route. He told me when I asked about riding this late in life, he replied with a, 'just dont stop pedaling' response.
  • 4 1
 Buy a BROMPTON... You can easily double your total days of "biking" over the course of a year. Grocery runs, coffee runs, work commutes, etc. From your front door you are pedaling. Love it.
  • 1 0
 LOL. You are probably sincere, but it is still a folding commuter bike for the train.
  • 1 0
 @suspended-flesh: Out of all the bikes I've ever bought.... The Brompton is in the top 3.
  • 1 0
 @JonDud: Maybe the couple of Brompton World Championship races I've seen at the Sea Otter years ago have clouded my perception.
  • 2 0
 It's all about bone density. The way to keep bone density up is resistance training. There's a lot a ways to accomplish that and riding mountain bikes is certainly one of them.

I'll argue however - it's not enough to be really "fit" so it's good to have other sports in the mix or have a good routine of body weight workouts at a minimum. Burpees, pushups, pullups, squats, etc.. a few times a week.

If you are over 50 and can slowly work your way up to 3 sets of 10 burpees you'll see your mountain biking explode. Nothing beats proper burpees.
  • 2 0
 66 yo, riding since watching Lemond in 1986. A lot of bikes since thenWink . MTB, Road, and Gravel

Currently undergoing chemo for multiple myeloma, which I am hoping to convert to a chronic illness. Really knocked the shit out of me in the first 4 weeks.

FTP in September, 225. FTP after first cycle 84, one month ago. Currently pushing 155 on the trainer, and hoping to get back by spring....

It really is All About The Bike.

Not looking for Attaboy's but just saying things are possible if you push back. Look after yourselves!
  • 3 1
 Been riding / racing consistently since I was 3. I'm 61 now. My goal is to do a MTB ride on my 100th birthday. At this point it seems like an easy goal to reach. If you like to ride don't ever stop.
  • 2 1
 The most depressing tips video i've ever watched. I wouldn't have watched it when i was thirty because i was invincible at 30. Turning 50 this year, broken abused body and mind. Food for thought though, just wish would have listened 20 or 30yrs ago.
  • 6 3
 Good advice as always. I’m still surprised how many mountain bikers do zero strength training, it helps in so many ways, not just for biking.
  • 4 1
 Thanks mate. Strength is a non-negotiable in my opinion. Ben
  • 6 5
 It is good advice and I agree with everything he said. Gotta take care of your body in its entirety by eating right, working on flexibility/range of motion, and working on fitness both strength and aerobic. You just can't stop. As soon as you stop riding or stop any sport/activity that requires a lot of fitness/stamina/strength, it is really difficult to get back after long terms away from the sport/activity. The older you get the more difficult it is to get back with long terms away from the sport.

Also, the older you get, injuries are more real and take longer to heal. So, taking less risk as you get older is better. Flexibility and range of motion also get worse. So, spending more time on stretching, range of motion, and warming up is more important.

Lastly. Even though most PB-ers hate ebikes, you will all need to get an ebike at some point in your life, if you want to keep climbing to do the downhills. Some will get ebikes earlier and some later, but in the end, you will all need to get an ebike. Wink
  • 2 1
 53 years old now. Last summer was one of my best on the bike ever and I’ve been riding since my teens. Lots of skills progression and tons of riding. One thing I did this year that helped a ton was work hard in the gym. It’s no exaggeration to say that the gym work was a game changer. I had aches and pains that have plagued me since my twenties disappear and I was able to ride stronger than I have for a long time. My physio has me focus on deadlifts to balance out being hunched over on the bike and that has been huge. I have set my gym goals around the deadlift which has made going to the gym fun because I have focus and I’m focusing on something that makes me stronger on the bike.

It also helps that I have a teenage son to help me progress at the bike park, which is to say riding with young guns helps progression even when you’re old. Want to ride like a kid? Ride with one!
  • 2 1
 Ride BCBR this summer with a guy who is 71 and rides or builds trail every day. He says he will ride an ebike when he gets old. He got me into trail building again and he is so technically good and fast. Props to guys who don’t make excuses to themselves and don’t quit even though he had torn his Achilles months before the race etc.
  • 2 1
 Keep up the inspiration for all of us - way to go. Peddling anything or walking are increasingly being tied to better health, both mental and physical. And anyone lucky enough to remain injury free, both genetically and by pilot error, into their 70 and even some in their 80's should be everyone's inspirations.

As for the haters, igore them, they hate on anything that they can herd amongst their shi(&ty selves or if somebody else can enjoy something they cant.

The biggest risk of ebike use is misuse and can end up closing trails for everyone due to a whole different group of haters. In than case it is haters (dont care about rules) against the other haters (trail users who mostly dont even use the trails, but cant imagine a different trail user enjoying something).
  • 3 1
 l'm 77 and ride my ebike in cornwall,ontario,canada whenever l want. one size fits all is b.s. do what youcan, when you can. that is the only rule. the rest is bullshit!
  • 5 4
 I’ve found making some investment in chiropractic and physio treatment has made big differences in posture and mobility and I wasn’t even that bad before. When you realise what you can gain, I found it very motivational.
  • 1 1
 Good work mate. Get on top of things early. Ben
  • 9 1
 Not a fan of the chiropractor, but a decent physio can make a difference.
  • 2 2
 @Jacquers: osteopath is the one. Although as with any tradespeople you need to find the right one!
  • 1 1
 I’ve been doing Ben’s over 40 workout for over a year now and my posture is so much better.
  • 1 1
 @PB-J: Couldn't agree more. I had a brilliant one when I lived in Adelaide, but where I am currently, unable to even find one at all...
  • 2 1
 @bikedrd: Cheers mate. Good to hear!
  • 1 1
 Excellent and thorough presentation Ben. Not much too add, and it would be helpful to have it stickied.

The injury aspect doesn't get enough attention here - it's part of the sport but ride at 80% and it may extend the time on the bike. I'm also hoping to be mountain biking until I'm 75.

Also note that alcohol consumption does interfere with sleep quality too (Check out Matt Walker for further info). And Peter Attia's Outlive is a good resource to compliment this information.
  • 1 1
 I'm 44. Rode over 11,000 total kms last year between MTB, commuting, bikepacking, and a small amount of road riding. Off-season strength training is so important. I've been riding and racing MTBs since I was a teen. Certainly bikes are better now, and I have a very dialed Tyee as my main sled that would put my 1996 GT Tequesta to shame, lol. But I may be faster now than I ever was. Haven't hit the peak yet!
  • 2 1
 Thank you for this advise, I'm 68 and still riding bike park features, lots of trail riding and looking forward to our annual Whistler trip for DH riding.
  • 2 2
 Best advice for keeping riding as you get older is to ensure you have a roll of toilet paper in the car and take some with you on the ride. 49 and always got my priorities right haha
  • 2 1
 my parents are 74 and ride more than 5000km a year. my dad boight his first fully with 71 and my mom just last year a turbo levo sl. wish i will that fit when that age
  • 1 2
 @BalfaPleaseComeBack: those side effects come into play when you're putting unnaturally high levels of T into your body, like what body builders do. When TRT is used for aging people, they're simply keeping their natural youthful levels the same.

You'd be surprised to learn that a lot of sporting body's allow a 'natural range' and lots of your favorite athletes are on TRT to stay towards the top of that natural range. They pass drug tests because they're still within the natural range and as long as their levels are stable it can't be detected.
  • 3 1
 55 & I'm just looking forward to another 20 years of buying bikes!
  • 6 1
 ...... and not selling any! N+1
  • 1 1
 @MTB-Strength-Factory: the current market dictates that I can’t sell, oh well more for me lol
  • 3 1
 It’s simple. Never stop.
  • 4 1
 70 is the new 30
  • 3 1
 My body tells me I'm 71, but my brain tells me I'm 28!
  • 3 1
 Wild how many 60+ year olds are on PB..super cool
  • 3 6
 Tip #4, if you’re the type of rider that gets bucked on table tops, then get rid of that POS fox X2 rear shock, those things are the f*ckin devil, one minute they work the next there is no rebound dampening and you’re off to endonesia.
  • 3 1
 A year and a half on mine and I've never had that problem. I've never even heard of that before (not saying it didn't happen to you).
  • 1 0
 You mean the coil (DHX2)? Never been bucked
  • 1 1
 I always found the things I did in my teens and twenties had the biggest impacts.
  • 3 1
 Don't let the old man in
  • 1 0
 Risk VS Reward becomes a much bigger factor.
  • 1 1
 great info. totally agree
  • 4 4
 Key to health: Do what big pharma tells you to do
  • 8 2
 @redfoxrun: I fixed it for you!!

"Key to health: Do the opposite of what big pharma tells you to do"
  • 1 1
 For a good read, pick up Phil Cavelll’s Midlife cyclist.
Below threshold threads are hidden







Copyright © 2000 - 2024. Pinkbike.com. All rights reserved.
dv65 0.062281
Mobile Version of Website