Keeping interested in riding

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  • Keeping interested in riding
  • Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    There are often threads on here about people who’ve lost their enthusiasm for riding.  This has happened to me in the past, but lately 25 years after starting MTBing I’m finding myself really keen.  What’s keeping me motivated now is partly that I’ve discovered lots of new local trails recently (and new local trails have been built even) but I realised that it’s partly bike related in combination with that.

    I’ve got a motley selection of bikes of various ages and levels of kit, but every one has been significantly improved over the years and they are also all pretty different.  This means that I can try different styles of riding on different trails whenever the mood takes me.  They are all MUCH better than bikes in the old days, I can ride faster, the trails have more flow, and I have more fun as a consequence.

    Sometimes it is about the bike.

    Premier Icon trailwagger
    Subscriber

    Agreed. I don’t have lots of bikes, but I do change them regularly (I rarely keep a bike more than 1-2 years)

    This keeps me interested (nothing better than riding a new bike), lets me try out different brands, models and styles of bike. In the last 3 years I have had carbon road bikes, plus hardtail, alloy road bikes, full sus carbon, steel road bike and now a monster cross bike.

    Premier Icon Rubber_Buccaneer
    Subscriber

    Would you lend me a bike then.  I have failed to get my lazy arse out for a Wednesday night ride since I got back from a holiday a month ago because cold, wet, dark.  I know I’d enjoy it too

    Premier Icon weeksy
    Subscriber

    I needed some headspace on Sunday and went out in the drizzle, just riding, enjoying, jumped in the woods, jumped on the road and absolutely loved my ride… Although admittedly i do have a noise that’s irrtiating me 😉

    but the rides i like the most are the long quiet evenings of summer with a beer stop and cake…

    Premier Icon tomhoward
    Subscriber

    From my experience of the last 2 months, nothing maintains your enthusiasm for riding that not being able to.

    Stupid foot…

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

     I have failed to get my lazy arse out for a Wednesday night ride since I got back from a holiday a month ago because cold, wet, dark.  I know I’d enjoy it too

    That’s when my rigid 29er comes out.  I pick a route that favours lanes and fire roads so mud isn’t an issue, the bike has plenty of gears so I can choose my level of effort, and I don’t have to worry about tech in the dark.

    Premier Icon hardtailonly
    Subscriber

    Since I started riding ‘seriously’ (probably 10-12ish years ago … I’m 50 now, and only previously ‘dabbled’ in cycling as an adult), I have rarely struggled for motivation, and am probably (like many here) slightly obsessive / dependant on cycling (if I’m not riding, I often want to be riding / thinking about riding).

    4 bikes help. 1xCX’y commuter bike, with guards and rack. 1xFS (cheaply put together, old skool, still a better bike than I am a rider). 1x Rigid SS. 1xTitanium CX/Gravel bike. Means there’s usually an option for whatever the weather / trails / conditions. And I run too, which is a good option when you’re just fed up of months & months of winter slop.

    So, I agree to an extent that it is partly about the bike(s), but I don’t rely on (and cannot afford) regularly updating/upgrading/replacing my bikes to motivate me.

    Premier Icon tomhoward
    Subscriber

    Hardtailonly- 1xFS (cheaply put together, old skool, still a better bike than I am a rider)

    i dont know what to believe anymore

    Premier Icon hardtailonly
    Subscriber

    Hardtailonly- 1xFS (cheaply put together, old skool, still a better bike than I am a rider)

    i dont know what to believe anymore

    Huh?

    Reference to my username? Which was created when I did only have a HT MTB … Just haven’t got around to / not sure how to change my username …

    trumpton
    Member

    I lost my mojo for about a year. It’s back now though.

    kelron
    Member

    I really struggle with motivation. When I’m out riding I always have a great time. When I’m thinking about riding I have to force myself to go (and often don’t).

    I don’t understand it.

    Premier Icon P-Jay
    Member

    @hardtailonly – I’m sure it wasn’t the cutting remark you might have thought it was.

    As for the original question, I try not to worry about ‘the bike’ too much, otherwise it’ll occupy all my thoughts any time I’m NOT riding. Usually I start to worry because it’s not whatever (standard, colour, cool brand etc) then I ride and I remember I really like it.

    I don’t really need to work too hard to keep the enthusiasm up, sometimes it takes a little dip, but my mind and body punish me brutally if I go more than a week without riding. I know a few guys who’ve fallen into the whole “yeah, I’ve got to get out again’ camp and I know their bikes are stuck in the back of the shed and haven’t moved for a year, if I get to that point I’d have to find something new to do, the idea of my life being a constant cycle of work/eat/tv/sleep would kill me.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    but I don’t rely on (and cannot afford) regularly updating/upgrading/replacing my bikes to motivate me.

    You don’t have to.

    My big bike is 11 years old.  I’ve given it new modern tyres, a dropper, and a modern wide bar and stem, which has opened up all sorts of riding.  I’ve also fitted flats, when my other bikes have SPDs, to vary the experience.  I’ve fettled the fork too so it’s now working far better than it ever did.  That lot didn’t cost much.

    My rigid bike was a £400 frameset with some cheap second hand wheels nearly 4 years ago.  But what inspires me about it is that it’s different, it’s rigid, and because it’s an adventurey sort of bike I take it on long adventurey rides.

    trumpton
    Member

    If you’ve got a reasonably decent bike that’s good enough for the kind of riding you do then that’s all you need really. Do you really need a 140mm fs trail bike with a slack ha to ride your local woods?

    I still smile when I ride my 1992 Marin that I got from the tip for £10 and spent about £70 doing up again. There’s no reason now adays with the advancement of technology to avoid night rides either, even if you are on a budget. ( if you look at ebay lights ). With decent modern trail bikes you can ride pretty much anything from xc to dh.

    Just get out.

    Premier Icon jimdubleyou
    Subscriber

    I would be more motivated if I lived a bit closer to half decent trails. Sometimes another spin round Richmond Park’s Tamsin Trail isn’t doing it for me (although it is quite sketchy in some parts on slick 28s).

    That said, I’d miss living near a tube station so it’s swings and roundabouts…

    Premier Icon hardtailonly
    Subscriber

    but I don’t rely on (and cannot afford) regularly updating/upgrading/replacing my bikes to motivate me.

    You don’t have to.

    No. That was my point.

    My FS is a 2009 (I think) Prophet. It’s my first FS, which I put together about 10 months ago for around £450-500 all in. It’s not very ‘on trend’, and whilst slack(ish) is not long and low. My other MTB is even older-skool (Inbred, rigid, SS), which I love riding (for certain types of rides), and was similarly lashed together for very little money. The Hack (commuter) is about 6/7 years old, and I’ve had loads of good times on that … Just does the boring commute stuff now.

    Although the Pickenflick was a serious amount to spend (for me), most of my biking has been done, and motivation kept, on quite long-standing, and reasonably inexpensive bikes.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    If you’ve got a reasonably decent bike that’s good enough for the kind of riding you do then that’s all you need really.

    Part of my point is that different bikes open up different kinds of riding, and hence different experiences.

    trumpton
    Member

    That’s true. I have a different bike for each discipline even although they are oldish, so I agree. Your right 😉

    tnrbilly
    Member

    I’m in that struggling with motivation stage at the moment.

    Do always make it out for the usual Thursday night rides but, they seem to just be getting longer and longer in an effort to squeeze more riding in, which makes them feel like a bit of a slogg just to get round as many trails as possible, rather than having a bit of fun and enjoying the ride itself which is how it used to be.

    Most weeks I now find myself ducking out for the pub after a couple of hours and trying to enjoy the social side rather than purely just the miles.

    The rest of the week, I tend to go running in the local woods rather than biking. Can’t remember when I last went riding by myself.

    I had been planning on getting a new bike this but at present can’t be bothered to spend the money. Though maybe a new bike will help get my mojo back.

    trumpton
    Member

    Riding different places and going to a proper bike park, got my mojo back. Iam currently planning a new part urban part wood local ride in my new area and I am getting very excited.

    i’ve been struggling since the clocks have changed, i’d set myself a target of 100km a week for 2018

    (failed in the second week of January as i had a week in the caribbean)

    anyway I’ve got wednesday morning off so planning a 40km Xc ride to a few places i’ve not been recently, so that will hit the 5,000 mark…

    i like to mix it up, 3 mountain bikes and a drop handle i ride offroad in a variety of locations around west yorkshire/ pennines / lakes / peaks, as well as a couple of tarmac loops to get the miles in when time doesnt permit..

    this weekend i did a flows mtb course and that had invigorated me to do it differently next year, the 100km is out the window, i want to improve my riding skills, its amazing how incompetent and unfit you can be shown by a few hours on a bmx pump track..

    i can definately recommend

    1, a MTB skills course if you are the type who wants to improve and stop getting by on bad habits.

    2, riding different bikes in different locations.

    I did a loop around lady cannings yesterday, stanage edge, blacka moor, and had a right blast.. been wanting to do it for a few years.. thats invigorated me, although resting today as my legs are dead

    Premier Icon orangespyderman
    Subscriber

    I’m really struggling at the moment.  Most of my former riding buddies now ride road bikes or are as fit as whippets and only really want to do 5+ hours rides putting the hammer down all the way.  Even if I was fit enough (and I’m not), I don’t have the time (2 young kids that not only take up time but that I want to spend time with while they still want me to 🙂 ), and don’t particularly enjoy those rides any more – I have more fun with a bit of messing around.  That means I usually end up riding on my own, which is a bit of a drag, and also I’ve recently started to ride more and more round the same old trails.

    I need something to spice it up.  Trying to keep some level of indoor biking up, but that’s just a poor substitute.

    Premier Icon lunge
    Subscriber

    I’ve sort of lost my mojo, I’m not riding as much as I have (Still 2500 miles this year mind you). Yesterday I did 40 miles along the canals on the fixie which was awesome, and I’ll commute in tomorrow, but “real” off road or long road rides have been pretty minimal. But all this is OK as I’m running loads at the moment and in a few months the bike love will return and all will be well.

    I guess I’d recommend not focusing on it, certainly not stressing and just doing what you enjoy. Right now, for me that is running, but soon my best bike will come out and all well be back to normal again.

    mark90
    Member

    Riding new trails and trying to ride old trails better keeps my interest going. Also pushing my boundaries and challenging myself keeps it fresh, though it’s a fine balance not pushing the limits too far. With the colder, damper, darker nights it’s easy to sack off the mid week ride on the same old local trails, it’s only arranging to meet riding buddies that gets me out off the sofa mid week.

    Nico
    Member

    my life being a constant cycle

    I see what you did there.

    Nico
    Member

    You don’t have to.

    My big bike is 11 years old. I’ve given it new modern tyres, a dropper, and a modern wide bar and stem, which has opened up all sorts of riding. I’ve also fitted flats, when my other bikes have SPDs, to vary the experience. I’ve fettled the fork too so it’s now working far better than it ever did.

    So … updating/upgrading then?

    It’s mud that demotivates me. I suppose after many months of bone dry trails I have nothing to complain about.

    Premier Icon BadlyWiredDog
    Subscriber

    Part of my point is that different bikes open up different kinds of riding, and hence different experiences.

    You don’t need different bikes to create ‘different experiences’. I still just love the way my local trails change over the year – lines, feel, traction, colours, views, temperatures. Bikes are just bikes.

    scud
    Member

    I love bikes, but i also tend to really like the different friends i have made via bikes, i live in Norfolk, so the mountain biking is limited, but there are some great beaches and great rides linking up the bridleways and woods.

    I ride with one mate who is 15 years younger and just getting into it, i love how he is so enthusiastic and always asking questions whilst already kicking my arse.

    Another made is the kinda guy that can name every mushroom and i love that rides with him usually involve us picking and drying mushrooms, locating wood to go back later with the van and chainsaw, coming back with jersey pockets full of duck eggs and him knowing every farmer and every little cut through across their land.

    I like the real mix of people i thin meet organising fat bike rides around the coast, or the group i go bivvying with.

    I think surrounding yourself with a good group of people is what keeps me getting out and the fact that a good ride and fresh air does a hell of a lot for my mood, i work 10 hour days in an office, and if i don’t ride a couple of times a week, i can become a real grumpy git..

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    Bikes are just bikes.

    Disagree. I really enjoy going up into the valleys with my rigid bike, feels good to do 50 miles with half of it on road. The same ride would be murder on the Patriot. Likewise the steep tech in the local woods is crap on the rigid bike.

    Premier Icon ajantom
    Member

    Coming up to nearly 30 years of MTBing, and it never seems to get old 😊

    Road biking comes and goes – I’ll train for a big Sportive once a every 2/3 years. I’ve also dabbled in CX/gravel, but it’s the MTB that I always come back to.

    Partly it’s so varied, every ride is different even if it’s on the same trails. I also love putting in nadgery, technical lines in my local woods that only I will ever ride.

    It’s also totally about the bikes. I love tinkering and building them up almost as much as riding them. Currently my favourites are a 29+ and a long n low 27.5 hardtail. Both a massive hoot to ride, and eminently tweakable.

    Premier Icon BadlyWiredDog
    Subscriber

    Disagree. I really enjoy going up into the valleys with my rigid bike, feels good to do 50 miles with half of it on road. The same ride would be murder on the Patriot. Likewise the steep tech in the local woods is crap on the rigid bike.

    No, I didn’t mean all bikes are the same and do the same thing. What I’m saying is that I don’t need lots of different bikes to find variety in riding or to motivate me to ride, the way the world changes is enough. Everyone’s wired differently though, so whatever works.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    I have been bored in the past, riding in the same old woods.  But now there are actually far more trails in the same woods, and it’s fun again.

    Premier Icon epicyclo
    Subscriber

    molgrips

    …Sometimes it is about the bike.

    Nothing like having a selection.

    But can I suggest you get one really unsuitable bike and try that on a trail it hasn’t been designed for? Double the fun, and you really appreciate your good bikes after.

    About £25 should cover the N+1 🙂

    Premier Icon BadlyWiredDog
    Subscriber

    My point is that I like riding the same trails in different conditions. In different weather. In different light. I like the micro-differences and seasonal changes. I like the way trails change subtly with wear. And the way different people ride the same sections of trail. And trying different lines. I like riding trails on the ‘wrong’ bike as well as the ‘right’ one. Because all those things make each ride, even on the same trails, subtly different.

    Don’t get me wrong, I like new stuff too, but I think variety is there on your doorstep, hiding in plain sight, if you’re prepared to look for it.

    kerley
    Member

    Never have a problem with motivation.  I enjoy riding my bike more than anything else I do so can’t wait to get out on it.  I am usually getting a bit fed up by the end of February after riding all through the winter but even when it is 0 degrees outside I still enjoy my bike ride.

    I only have one bike and it is as simple as possible so it is not about having numerous bikes for me.

    Premier Icon BadlyWiredDog
    Subscriber

    Moly’s on commission from the cycling industry though. It’s a bit like N+1, call it Nx1 where your total enjoyment of riding is determined by the number of bikes you own…Not at all a shallow justification for buying more and more bikes 😉   <—- that’s a wink smiley just so there’s no confusion. I don’t genuinely believe that Molgrips is a bike industry stooge, just to nip that one in the bud like. Below for full-sized version.

    😉

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    Below for full-sized version.

    Lol 🙂

    It’s just that we constantly get this message that it’s not about the bike.  Well, that’s true in some ways, but in other ways not.  The bike does matter.  You, the bike, the geography and the trails all have to come together to make a fun ride.  That’s not to say your bike has to be shiny and new – just that it has to work well for you with whatever you want it to do.

    But can I suggest you get one really unsuitable bike and try that on a trail it hasn’t been designed for?

    I’ve done that lots of times and I have to say I don’t really enjoy it that much.  Even back in the day on a mid 90s rigid bike, whilst they were designed for the trails, they weren’t really very good.

    There’s a trail near me that I’ve ridden since the mid 90s.  Back then I had a rigid bike with 1.9″ tyres on.  The trail goes down into a dip and back up to the same level.  It’s fairly rocky and there’s a lip into the dip in both directions.  I used to try and get air off the lip, and come up the other side fast enough to get air off the other lip and I never managed it, I just couldn’t keep the speed up.  Now, on my 29er FS, I come into it so fast I can land half way down the downslope and get decent air from the lip on the other side.  So yes, I’m going faster – but more speed in this case makes the trail way more fun, it makes features out of what was just plain trail.  And the speed is down to the bike.  And of course the same is true for trails all over the place.

    Premier Icon BadlyWiredDog
    Subscriber

    It’s just that we constantly get this message that it’s not about the bike.

    Maybe in your alternative reality, where I’m sitting, the message we get is constantly that it’s all about the bike. You need more travel. Bigger wheels. Small wheels. Plus-sized tyres. An adventure bike. A gravel bike. An enduro gravel bike. A hardcare hardtail and a softcore softail. A road bike. A singlespeed gravel bike. An e-bike. An e gravel bike. And you need a new one of each. Now!

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    I’m just reading STW…

    Matthew
    Member

    After around 12 years of riding, I lost interest for about 4 years, started going back out a year ago, struggled to keep up but persevered, bought a new bike & I’m now as obsessed as I ever was, still struggle to keep up as my riding buddies are 15 – 20 years younger than me but I’ve noticed a significant improvement over the year, cant imagine giving up again,

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