Never judge a rider by their appearance!
My first mountain bike ride was when I was 22 (I am 29 now) in college. I went up on a group ride with a buddy. I remember seeing mainly 40 somethings and 50 somethings at the trailhead. Many had beer bellies and looked out of shape. Flash forward two hours later when I am getting smoked on the trail and nearly vomiting all over the trail.
Since then I have progressed immensley. I have built up endurance, speed and leg strength. So when I was invited to go on a trip to Moab with three guys old enough to be my Dad I naively though "Ok, well should be a cakewalk since they are so old", these dudes wore me and my buddy (same age) out the whole week.
I sometimes am impressed by how many beer-bellied, awkward looking guys/gals at the trail can shred so hard. Many of these types have cheaper bikes than most and don't insist on wearing the expensive lycra and name brand shoes.
So next time you see someone who looks out of place on the trail, he/she might just shred harder than you think!
Any similar stories out there?