Starting A Bicycle Journey at 60 Years Old

Looking to start a new fitness journey at the age of 60?

Are you feeling a little excited but also a bit apprehensive?

I get it!

After a knee replacement, my running days were over. So, my doctor suggested that I give cycling a try instead.

And you know what?  It was the best decision!

If you’re worried about your age, don’t be.

Age should never be a barrier when it comes to trying new things, including fitness routines.

Personally, I did some research before taking on cycling and I discovered some helpful tips that made my decision a whole lot easier.

So, I thought that I would share what I learned with you.

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Finding Your “Why” For Starting A Bicycle Journey At 60

Your “why” will help you to stick with any fitness program.  It is a huge motivator and will assist you with staying focused and on track.

Whenever I start any new fitness program, my “why” has always been the thing that has pushed me forward.

It was no different when I decided to start bicycling program.

It doesn’t matter what your “why” is – just remember that this is your personal fitness journey so make it something that will motivate you.

My “why” is my 5 grandsons. I need to keep up with the boys, and to do that I need to stay in shape physically, mentally and emotionally.

Maybe your “why” is to keep up with your grandkids too.  Or maybe it’s to get in shape for your child’s upcoming wedding or you want to get out and socialize with friends again, but you don’t have the stamina.

Whatever it is keep that “why” with you at all times – write it down and keep it somewhere you will always see it – this will help you to succeed at starting and sticking with a new bicycle journey.

So, take a minute and give it some thought.

What was that one thing that made you think about starting your bicycle program?  That should probalby  be your “why”.

Are you trying to get back into cycling after a long break?  Did you stop because you didn’t have a “why”?  Maybe your “why” will help you stick with it this time.

Determine your “why”.

9 Health Benefit of Bike Riding

After some research to see if cycling was right for me, I found that there are actually several wonderful health benefits that come from  bicycling that I didn’t even realize.

All of the reasons are especially helpful as we age.

Here are my 9 favorite benefits.  Hopefully some of them will convince you to get back on that bike! 

1.  Improves Mental Health

Life is full of stress – cycling could help you to deal with your stress better.  It can also help with depression and anxiety which many people including seniors suffer from.  

Since it’s an aerobic activity, it will stimulate your brain’s feel-good neurotransmitters, called endorphins.   This is often called a “runners high” but they don’t own the market on it – any aerobic exercise including cycling can give you that same feeling.

Serotonin levels can also increase naturally by aerobic exercise.  Serotonin helps to fight anxiety, depression as well as panic disorders.

Cycling can also mimic a mindful meditation effect – this occurs when you are concentrating on the road ahead or you just find yourself caught up in the present moment during your ride. 

2.  Weight Loss

Can cycling help with weight loss?

It sure can.

Depending on the intensity and distance that you are cycling, it can burn between 100 – 500 calories.

It also raises the heart rate which helps the body to burn more calories even after you are done working out.

However, like any fitness program – you will never be able to out work a bad diet – so you may have to take a good look at your food choices and intake when trying to lose weight. 

3.  Easier On The Joints

This is why my orthopedic surgeon suggested that I begin my bicycle journey.

There is no secret that activities such as running can be hard on the joints.

Cycling however, is much more joint friendly because it places less stress on your joints.

Maintaining good joint health is important – especially as we age. 

4.  Strengthens your Muscles

Cycling is a form of resistance training.  It strengthens your calves, buttocks, quads and hamstrings.

It also works your upper body when you are holding onto the handlebars to keep yourself balanced and up on 2 wheels.

And oh boy does it work the core muscles.  You will build up your core – including stomach, back, butt and hips – just keeping yourself balanced on the bike.  You will feel the burn for sure. 

5.  Helpful With Building Endurance

Cycling will increase your heart rate which will increase your lung capacity and strengthen your heart.

Even a short bike ride, a few times a week, will increase your endurance over time.

So, if you are looking to get back into Pickleball or hiking with friends, cycling can help to increase your endurance and get you back in your game! 

6.  Improved Digestion

If you have difficulty with digestion or acid reflex – which we all seem to experience as we age – cycling may be a huge help for you.

Physical activity such as cycling can help balance the bacteria in your stomach.  It also increases the blood flow to the digestive muscles so food can flow easier.

And don’t forget, it also helps to decrease stress.  So, if that is the cause of your stomach issues it will help with that as well. 

7.  Added Brain Power

Physical activity helps with maintaining blood flow to the brain.  Which results in a constant supply of oxygen to the brain.

This can help you focus and make planning and multitasking easier.

So whatever mental task needs your attention – cycling can help to get your thoughts in order! 

8.  Improves Balance

Cycling helps to increase leg strength and increase balance perception.

As we age our sensory system begins to deteriorate.  This leads to balance and stability issues.

This is definitely a big concern especially for us seniors.  Poor balance leads to increased falls and injuries.

Which can lead to a broken bone, and you know that this can take you out of the game for long time! 

9.  Helps With Sleep

Cycling on a regular basis can also help with any sleep issues that you may have.

With as little as 10 minutes of cycling 3-4 times a week you can really improve your sleep quality.

It’s not really known exactly why aerobic exercise helps with sleep, but it does.

It could be due to the release of endorphins when you cycle which helps to decrease your stress and anxiety.

Whatever the reason a good night sleep is always a huge win! 

How To Get Prepared To Begin A Cycling Program

Whenever you start a new fitness program you have to do a little prep work.

Cycling is no exception.

I did buy a new bike a few years ago since it had been numerous years since I rode one.

And my old bike was stolen so there’s that!

However, since my bike has been sitting for a long time, I did have to do a few things to get it ready for my new bicycle journey.

Here are a few things to consider while getting ready for a ride. 

Why Is It Better To Ride A Bike Than Drive A Car

Getting Your Bike Ready To Roll

If you are using a bike that’s been hanging around in your shed or garage for a few years or longer, you may want to do a little maintenance to get it ride ready.

  • Make sure that the tires are filled.  If it’s been a while since you have ridden your bike you may want to consider replacing the inner tubes.  This could prevent you from getting stranded on your first ride!
  • Make sure that your bike chain is in good condition and well oiled.
  • Give your bike a good bath before you take it out.  Not only will you look good but it can help to give you a smoother ride.
  • Your bike should be a good fit for you to prevent injury to your low back, hands, shoulders or knees.  So, take a minute to adjust your seat, handlebars and pedals if needed.
  • You may even want to consider taking your bike to the bike shop for a once over.  They can be a huge help with getting your bike ready for the open road!

 Some Gear That Could Help Your Ride

  • A water bottle and water bottle holder – you don’t want to dehydrate during the ride.  Especially seniors.  
  • Moisture wicking clothing for comfort.  You may also want to layer your clothing to adjust to the weather.
  • Bicycle shorts are also worth the investment.  They can help ease any back or butt pain.
  • helmet – it is not a must, but it is certainly smart to use one.
  • Mirrors for your bike – There are a lot of crazy drivers, and you want to make sure you see them even if they do not see you!
  • A bell or horn – again crazy drivers but also if you are going through an area of walkers and can’t change course or get by them.
  • A comfortable seat – this can really save you!  It took me a few tries to get it right, but trust me your perfect seat is out there.

 Plan Your Route

  • Try to find a route that is familiar to you while starting out.
  • You may want to stay close to home when you are first starting your journey. Just in case something doesn’t go the way you planned. You may need to return home sooner than you thought you would.
  • Consider using an app to plan out your route.  You may be surprised what great routes may be around you that you didn’t know existed.  
  • Try to find a quiet route. Avoid a lot of traffic when starting out. You’ll want to be more familiar with your bike before challenging traffic.


At sixty plus years old, there is no better time to start a cycling journey than now.

From the data there have been many seniors who have taken up this journey. 

Cycling can be very beneficial and enjoyable for all seniors regardless of age, size or experiences.

With obtaining the proper knowledge and safety gear as well as finding an appropriate bicycle tailored to your specific individual needs, you are on your way to starting a successful journey.

I encourage all senior cyclists to view cycling as a chance to explore yourself and the world around you in ways you never expected before.

But most importantly, remember that it’s never too late to begin a new journey in life – we know you can do it!

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