the importance of riding, and exercising - Yamaha FJR Forum : Yamaha FJR Owners Forums
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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-22-2020, 11:50 AM Thread Starter
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the importance of riding, and exercising

When I first retired and set out to go on a long trip, I got 3 hours down the road and, because of extreme pain in my neck and shoulders, I slunk back home with my tail tucked between my legs.

Over the next year, I joined the Patriot Guard Riders {shameless plug for PGR} and tried to attend military funerals around 1-2 hours away from home, and also did a bunch of 2-4 hour rides up into the Smoky Mountains, {I know it's tough to be me, living here. LOL}

Then I started doing longer rides, culminating in an 11 hour straight through ride to Florida and 11 hours back {South Carolina] a week later, and an attempted Iron Butt Saddle Sore {1000 miles in 24 hours} that failed, but I got 800 miles into it before a massive thunder shower took me out.

The first point of this tirade is that it takes miles to get comfortable, for many people, so don't be discouraged early on, especially if you are old and have been sedentary. {but even if you haven't been sedentary, riding a motorcycle is quite different from riding in a car or even working 10 hours a day}.

Of course, the correct individual farkles, will make a big difference as well.

LASTLY, and the main reason for this post, is that I always felt that I would die in the middle of a U-turn on my FJR. Being smushed {pronounced smOOOshed} by a cager that I missed seeing in my rearview mirror, because at 70 years I could NOT turn my head left {or right if your a Brit or an Aussie} far enough to see clearly who was coming up behind me.

Thus the premonition of the method of my demise.

BUT, I have now taken up driving for DOORDASH, delivering food to people, several days a week, in my old Honda Civic. Low and behold, after a couple of months of twisting my head left and right pulling out onto highways, and backing out of thousands of parking spaces, when I jumped on the FJR the other day, I found that I could now turn my head far enough to see behind me when doing a U-turn!!!!

I don't know the moral of this story, except to encourage folks that we can get back what we have lost, but it takes time and effort.

Thanks for listening to my rambling.

07 FJR 48,000 miles 03 Yamaha FJR1300
1986 Yamaha FZX700 1977 Kawasaki KX250 1978? Yamaha TY250 1979 Yamaha YZ250 1970 850 Moto Guzzi 1974? Honda XL 100 1978? Yamaha XT500 1975 Yamaha RD350B 1964 Bridgestone 90S

Last edited by philharmonic; 02-22-2020 at 11:59 AM.
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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-22-2020, 12:06 PM
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Absolutely stretching and strengthening can do wonders for the little things.. I have a chronic knot above my shoulder blade that gets aggravated.... see a physiotherapist for chronic stuff, get a cheap gym membership and go even two/three times a week strengthen the core, etc. I feel way better and have more energy... yeah getting old, turning the big 7-Oh on Mar.1........ it's just a number.... um, yep, sure thing.
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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-22-2020, 12:46 PM
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I find 3 days a week at the gym for 1 1/2 hours really helps with staying flexible, especially during the winter months. Chiro when that doesn't work.
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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-22-2020, 01:07 PM
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Similarly years ago in physical therapy for a shoulder issue I realized how the prescribed stretch/exercise resembled the motions I used to wash back with a washcloth. Sure enough, the problem arm couldn't (then) lift much above my waist behind my back, but switching the other arm reached high. All because that was how I washed my back.

The exercise was to hold a towel behind head with one hand, grab the other end with hand behind back. Then use the top hand to lift the other. This is how I wash my back.

Therapist noticed and complemented me on great progress. Then I mentioned I had switched sides figuring if the exercise was good for the problem side I should try it on the other side.

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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-22-2020, 01:17 PM
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Staying active and exercise is a MUST at our age. Use IT or lose IT as the saying goes is for real after 60. My hands and lower back bothers me BIG time in the winter and my left hand in the summer when I get caught in stop and go traffic from the clutch lever. The AE model and adding the "Farkles" so the FJR fits me now has extended my out of state rides, plus being tall on this 690 pound bike makes it a lot easier in stop/go traffic.

When I was 30 I never dreamed I would still be riding to Arkansas from Texas at 69, my friends that I rode with in my teenage years have said it's a "miracle" I am still alive after 50 plus years. When I was 19 I worked at a Drag Strip (week ends) and raced my bikes and cars until my late 50's , it was getting too expensive and knew I needed to be thinking about retirement. In my mind I am still 25 but my body lets know different now.

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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-22-2020, 02:29 PM
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I thought you were delivering on your bike. It seemed like a win-win to me.

So far, I don’t have any issues riding, or distance riding, and feel great the next day.

But.... I broke a hand this year. Badly. And I appear to now have a permanent susceptibility to cold in that hand, and it barely functions when I first wake up. Once warmed up, it works as well as ever, but it’ll always be stiff sometimes, and suspect (but will not admit) the the whole episode may have invited some arthritis to creep into both hands. I can no longer do push-ups on my knuckles. It just hurts too bad and, if I insist on doing it, my hands will keep me awake that night throbbing. No problems with riding though. But heated glove liners are a must in the cold, for me.
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Last edited by Bill Lumberg; 02-22-2020 at 02:43 PM.
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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-22-2020, 02:44 PM
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I can't believe people actually order from Door Dash lol. The economy must be really bad if people are willing to order food, pay for it, pay to have it delivered and then tip the driver (I assume you do it for tips?)

Also like Ray, I'm also turning the big 7-Oh in May. Turning the head far enough to see left and right is an issue. As is the arthritis that has developed in my hands, right wist and knees. My wife just joined a gym and wants me to go too. May give it a try. Not much of a gym guy, I'd rather be riding, but if it can help me ride longer I guess it would be worth it.
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It doesn't matter what I ride, where I ride, how fast I ride, or how far I ride... it only matters THAT I RIDE...EVERY DAY. "Ferret"
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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-22-2020, 04:30 PM
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Home gym @ home thankfully.

Hit the Lat Machine & do triceps and biceps on that machine too.


Get on the treadmill for 10 degree incline @ +3.0 mpg


Inversion table & BackTech2000 for my low back.


Gotta do it - 66 years young now.

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...where hiway 421 & 50 kiss...
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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-22-2020, 05:47 PM
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Turn 69 this year but from 3 years ago was born again in the gym to lose 50 pounds with heavy cardio and building muscle mass 5-6 times per week. Suffered through a herniated disc and now some other health issues I’m working past but have kept the weight off and the gym at 3 times per week.
What I found really helps during the riding season especially is yoga. Really improves flexibility even if only 1-2 times per week. Try it. Huge difference.

Hugh "Mac" Brooks
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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-22-2020, 05:48 PM
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Walking/cardio, Weight training, yoga and planks for me!

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Last edited by jtdunc; 02-22-2020 at 05:57 PM.
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