Dave Wallace's cycling background

as of 5/3/05

On Sunday January 9, 2005,  Ed Kerl and I were at the Brice's Creek rest stop on the 31-mile Pollocksville loop talking about when we started cycling. I asked Ed how long he'd been cycling.

Ed said he had cycled all his life. I'm sure he had but doesn't every kid have a bike and cycle everywhere until he gets a driver's license? However, only a few kids really become serious cyclists upon reaching adulthood as Ed has done. I didn't start cycling seriously until I retired. 

I was really interested in when Ed had started cycling cross-country or on a routine basis. I see lots of cyclists riding around the block at 8 mph and head back home but I don't call them serious. Ed, like myself, likes to cycle every day, cross country and at a nice pace. I told him I had collected statistics on my cycling for 20 years, which I've decided to post below. My hopes are that it might interest others to tell us about their cycling experience or at least help to get a few folks off their duff. It's never too late. 

My cycling

I retired at age 55 in October 1984, over 20 years ago. At that time I was burned out and felt I was living on borrowed time especially since my dad had died of a heart attack at age 53. I was overweight, a smoker and a couch potato. I knew I had to change my life style or probably die young so (1) I quit smoking and (2) Started riding a bike.

I had an old Raleigh 3-speed and my objective was simply to cycle 100 miles/month year around. This was a big deal for me at the time.

I had an Apple computer with VisiCalc software so I set up a spreadsheet where I recorded monthly mileage and had it track my average per month since retiring (I still record monthly miles). Winter months were cold in Maryland so I had to cycle more in the summer to maintain my 100-mile average. During this time I began rebuilding bikes and selling them so I kept getting myself a better bike.

In 1993, we moved to River Bend and in 1996 I decided to enter the Senior Games cycling competition at age 67.  I managed to barely win 3 bronze medals riding a French Motobecane touring bike. I was surprised how fast the competition was and that's when I learned that I had the WRONG BIKE. I needed a ROAD BIKE. So I purchased a new Cannondale R900 aluminum ROAD BIKE and entered the NC State Finals in Raleigh in '96 and came home with 3 silver medals. The bike made the difference. I continued racing locally and in state finals and in 1999, at age 70, I competed in the Senior Nationals at Disney World. I didn't win but was proud of my results which are posted at http://pages.suddenlink.net/davew/Clermont.htm

So I can say serious cycling began for me in 1996 at age 65 when I bought my Cannondale ROAD BIKE. Like I said, it's never too late. 


Started cycling on a routine basis following retirement in October 1984 at age 55. I'm now 75. As of May 3, 2005, over 20 years later,  I have:

J Cycled 53,903 total miles at average of 219 miles/month. That's over twice around the world.

J Cycled 36,800 miles on my Cannondale since August '96 at average 350 miles/month.

J Entered 46 Senior races in local, NC State and National since 1996. (See bikerace.xls , a MS Excel spreadsheet where I have recorded times for 1st/2nd/3rd place for every race I've entered since 1996.)

J Won 15 gold medals, 12 silver medals, 5 bronze medals.

J Cycled 48 Century trips since 1996.  Started the New Bern Century Cyclists (NBCC) club that has 53 members, not all of whom are "serious" cyclists. See http://pages.suddenlink.net/davew/nbcc.htm