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Old 2015-04-22, 08:12 AM   #46
Piece Maker
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Also, never on a full, full stomach-- awful awful feeling and performance.
I'm the total opposite! I bonk SUPER easily, and so can't really ride without a recently-filled stomach. I'm not saying go to an all-u-can-eat and accept their challenge, but I always eat a good square meal before riding any sort of distance. Obviously a mile down the road to the shop doesn't need it, but if I'm leaving the house specifically to ride, I will pig out beforehand
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Old 2015-04-22, 02:36 PM   #47
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Originally Posted by Piece Maker View Post
I'm the total opposite! I bonk SUPER easily, and so can't really ride without a recently-filled stomach. I'm not saying go to an all-u-can-eat and accept their challenge, but I always eat a good square meal before riding any sort of distance. Obviously a mile down the road to the shop doesn't need it, but if I'm leaving the house specifically to ride, I will pig out beforehand
If I have too much in my stomach, I ride like crap. I usually eat light and carry something in case of bonking. For me, that is true of any activity, but especially pedaling.
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Old 2017-05-02, 06:13 PM   #48
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I'm curious, what sort of on-day/off-day regimes do people tend to find they can maintain when trying to build up personal endurance?

Obviously things like RTL, Sam Wakeling & Roger Davies' 7-day-LEJOG, etc indicate that an extremely trained body can do serious rides day after day, but what about mere mortals developing through far lower personal limits?

My first summer there was a stretch when I was doing 2nd or 3rd day rides depending on weather, and it seemed to work, but some overuse injury cut the fall season short. Additionally I noticed that I've often done some of my best distances early in the spring - not only before the weather is hot, but also before cumulative distance has taken its toll. Ironically that's also when I'm least in shape overall, suggesting that I'm mostly riding in a regime where the specific leg, knee and saddle stresses are more of an issue than overall athletic endurance ones.
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Old 2017-05-03, 09:05 PM   #49
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During LEJOG both Sam and I had problems consuming enough food/energy to recharge the body from the depletion caused by the riding. This left both of us with problems, my lymph nodes were going ballistic trying to cope with the crap in the food.

I have been doing more reading recently and I understand that the process we noticed is common among long distance riders. The body starts to consume the muscle mass if it can not get energy out of the food consumed. One of the things that is recommended is to take multi vitamins along with the high energy food you take to try and compensate and balance the body up.

The other thing that they are recommending is taking ibuprofen as a preventer not just as a reaction to joint pain.

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Old 2017-05-04, 07:40 PM   #50
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The other thing that they are recommending is taking ibuprofen as a preventer not just as a reaction to joint pain.
Roger
As an "older" guy, my joints are getting to be sensitive. When I leave for a ride that I know will be more than about three hours duration, I will take 3 or 4 ibruprofens before leaving the house. I find this to be very helpful.
I also use one of the "recovery" drinks after long rides (more than 20 miles). I notice a positive difference when I do. Cheers!
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Old 2017-05-04, 08:25 PM   #51
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Speaking of joints, having had calves perthes as a young boy, I know my hip will need replacing sometime.
As a preventative measure I take fish oil capsules and glucosamine, when I remember to do so that is
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Old 2017-05-05, 02:37 PM   #52
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When I can't get out to the hills, I will just ride on grass. It's amazing how challenging it can be. No gravity to help push you down. Tall grass with blind gopher holes...good luck. Every pedal requires quick explosion of energy to stay balance. You are definitely off the seat. Bonus is the "cushion" when you fall.
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Old 2017-05-06, 02:39 AM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rogeratunicycledotcom View Post
During LEJOG both Sam and I had problems consuming enough food/energy to recharge the body from the depletion caused by the riding.
Thanks so much for dropping back into the thread! I'm still amazed that you were able to do such long rides so many days in a row.

Only wish my limit were getting sufficient food energy in; at present, it's more achieving enough muscle/joint recovery to do meaningful rides often enough to counterbalance the desk work.

But there does seem to be a common thread of riding a lot over a few days depleting the body.

When working up to major rides, what sort of riding schedule did you have? Ride a lot and rest several days? Ride a little every day? Some mix of the two?

Quote:
One of the things that is recommended is to take multi vitamins along with the high energy food you take to try and compensate and balance the body up.

The other thing that they are recommending is taking ibuprofen as a preventer not just as a reaction to joint pain.
Yes. Even in my 35-40 km rides, I've hit the point where ready reserves are depleted by the end of the ride, and pure water becomes effectively toxic. The first time I didn't understand what was happening and ended up on my knees on the train platform vomiting essentially nothing; the second I realized what was going on, dumped out the rest of my water bottle at the conclusion of the ride and bought some salty vegetable juice on the walk up the hill to home. I don't always know how long a ride I'm going to do when I set out, and if it's a short one would rather have just the water, but I'm starting to think I should carry sports drink packets, electrolyte tablets, or similar to mix in if I do decide to go for distance.
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Old 2017-05-18, 08:15 PM   #54
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shorter cranks muni = great but super exhausting??

So yesterday I had one of those "cloud with a silver lining" experiences...
My muni skills have improved over the last few years and I've moved from 24" to 26" to now 29+ (30.5") and both my uphill and downhill have really improved. So for yesterday's ride I switched out my 150mm cranks for 127s... and technically I did incredibly great: I was able to ride up almost all uphills that I ride on my 26 with 150s and my 29+ with 150s. As expected short/fast uphills were easier but even super steep slow crank-and-pause hills went great (that was really amazing and a great feeling!). And downhill I was able to ride (almost) as well as with the 150s. Only for hops and drops did I really feel the difference. And, as expected I was *WAY* faster. It was amazing.

However, there was a major down side:

But what I couldn't believe is just how incredibly tired and exhausted I was. I've thought about it a lot and the only theory I can come up with is: b/c of the shorter cranks I am forced to spin fast _all_ the time. Uphill I must use high force to keep riding and downhill I must spin fast. And slow-speed/technical then requires concentration and force on the pedals to stay on the uni. And (duh) as there's no freewheel there is no rest or recovery time at all.

After the first hour or so I had to stop and take a break and then for the next 3+ hours I had to get off and take a significant break about every 20 minutes or so because I was so thoroughly exhausted. This was on my normal 2-4 hour route that I've been doing 1-2 times a week for the last 2+ years and am I usually never forced to stop for recovery although I usually take 1-2 breaks just because and to eat/drink. But my level of tiredness was crazy and near the end of the ride, even after taking a break for 20 minutes I would get back on and ride up one hill and 10 minutes later again feel like I was about to die... (I'm guessing I had already massively over-exerted myself so I had no reserves left at all)

I've done lots of enduance sports over the years (mtb, road/trac/crit biking, trail and mountain running, etc.) but I've never been as thoroughly exhausted on a fun/training ride as I was: ok, maybe at the end of some multi-hour races where I pushed myself really hard, but never from a training ride. Or maybe a few times due to high heat in >95F (35C) high humidity, but yesterday was around 22C(72F). And I've bonked due to lack of energy, but that is different and was not the problem (after taking a break and eating and drinking it was not significantly better).

Anyone ever experienced this when dopping down crank length? I had a simliar experience about 6 months ago when I had dual hole 150/127 cranks on my 36 and had had them at 127 for a road tour and rode to the trailhead and just thought, "It'll never work, but I'll try and ride the trail with the 127s..." With the 127s on the 36 I wasn't able to ride everything, especially the steep uphills (but my technique has also improved since then), but I was also totally exhausted after 15 to 20 minutes.

So I'm not sure:
Do I leave the 127s on and expect (hope) that my fitness will improve with time?
Or do I switch back to the 150s as all-in-all it is more fun to not feel like I'm about to puke out my guts from exhaustion? (and today I still feel like I got hit by a truck)

Maybe I'll break out my heart-rate monitor again. However if I remember correctly from my last attempts with muni, the correlation of the HR with exertion was not nearly as informative as in cycling or running (I assume because you do a lot more then just push the pedal/feet but also have to balance). And then what do I do if I find I am riding in too high % zone? I can't switch gears or slow my footspeed?? With the short cranks it is either 95% effort or get off and walk...
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Old 2017-05-18, 09:22 PM   #55
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Have you considered adding a brake? My 36er had 125's on it when I got it - just enjoyed riding down a long descent with the brake last night that I felt compelled to walk when I first encountered it without that mounted.

I've been pleased at the degree to which my ability to go up things on the 36er without getting longer cranks has improved in the weeks since I got it.

But then I do essentially road riding - paths or packed dirt wit the occasional tree root exposed or cracking the paving upwards.
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Old 2017-05-18, 09:50 PM   #56
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I noticed this too; I recently put 137s on my 26 (it used to have 150s).

What seemed to affect me more than the extra force required was the timing; the dead spot got bigger and the point at which I'd stall was a little further out from TDC. Felt like I had to be 'tighter' with my balance feedback.

To test this I tried a few times halting as rapidly as possible from a sprint and forced myself to relearn the timing and amount of torque to apply to bring the wheel to an instantaneous dead stop.
It felt easy to stop dead with 150s but dropping even a few mm to 137 meant my lean-back/reverse-torque/stop-dead was out of whack.

Once I got the timing down and my body knew what to do it was fine. Maybe just stick with it; the fitness 'is what it is' but maybe you just need more exposure to the new dead spot and the narrower arc over which you can usefully interact with the wheel before running out of legs!.

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Old 2017-05-19, 12:42 AM   #57
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Another vote for conditioning. A change in crank length is a big one.
Your tire size just changed as well. That affects everything again.

We're in the same skills boat.
When I put the pedals in the 127mm holes everything is so smooth but I find I'm muscling through a few moves instead of the 150 finesse where my body just reacts and corrects.
So I use my 150s on the trail and move them in to 127s when it's all access road.

I also know the 127 position is much harder on my knees. Again probably more muscle than technique attributing to this.
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Old 2017-05-19, 04:34 PM   #58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MUCFreerider View Post
So yesterday I had one of those "cloud with a silver lining" experiences...
My muni skills have improved over the last few years and I've moved from 24" to 26" to now 29+ (30.5") and both my uphill and downhill have really improved. So for yesterday's ride I switched out my 150mm cranks for 127s... and technically I did incredibly great: I was able to ride up almost all uphills that I ride on my 26 with 150s and my 29+ with 150s. As expected short/fast uphills were easier but even super steep slow crank-and-pause hills went great (that was really amazing and a great feeling!). And downhill I was able to ride (almost) as well as with the 150s. Only for hops and drops did I really feel the difference. And, as expected I was *WAY* faster. It was amazing.

However, there was a major down side:

But what I couldn't believe is just how incredibly tired and exhausted I was. I've thought about it a lot and the only theory I can come up with is: b/c of the shorter cranks I am forced to spin fast _all_ the time. Uphill I must use high force to keep riding and downhill I must spin fast. And slow-speed/technical then requires concentration and force on the pedals to stay on the uni. And (duh) as there's no freewheel there is no rest or recovery time at all.

After the first hour or so I had to stop and take a break and then for the next 3+ hours I had to get off and take a significant break about every 20 minutes or so because I was so thoroughly exhausted. This was on my normal 2-4 hour route that I've been doing 1-2 times a week for the last 2+ years and am I usually never forced to stop for recovery although I usually take 1-2 breaks just because and to eat/drink. But my level of tiredness was crazy and near the end of the ride, even after taking a break for 20 minutes I would get back on and ride up one hill and 10 minutes later again feel like I was about to die... (I'm guessing I had already massively over-exerted myself so I had no reserves left at all)

I've done lots of enduance sports over the years (mtb, road/trac/crit biking, trail and mountain running, etc.) but I've never been as thoroughly exhausted on a fun/training ride as I was: ok, maybe at the end of some multi-hour races where I pushed myself really hard, but never from a training ride. Or maybe a few times due to high heat in >95F (35C) high humidity, but yesterday was around 22C(72F). And I've bonked due to lack of energy, but that is different and was not the problem (after taking a break and eating and drinking it was not significantly better).

Anyone ever experienced this when dopping down crank length? I had a simliar experience about 6 months ago when I had dual hole 150/127 cranks on my 36 and had had them at 127 for a road tour and rode to the trailhead and just thought, "It'll never work, but I'll try and ride the trail with the 127s..." With the 127s on the 36 I wasn't able to ride everything, especially the steep uphills (but my technique has also improved since then), but I was also totally exhausted after 15 to 20 minutes.

So I'm not sure:
Do I leave the 127s on and expect (hope) that my fitness will improve with time?
Or do I switch back to the 150s as all-in-all it is more fun to not feel like I'm about to puke out my guts from exhaustion? (and today I still feel like I got hit by a truck)

Maybe I'll break out my heart-rate monitor again. However if I remember correctly from my last attempts with muni, the correlation of the HR with exertion was not nearly as informative as in cycling or running (I assume because you do a lot more then just push the pedal/feet but also have to balance). And then what do I do if I find I am riding in too high % zone? I can't switch gears or slow my footspeed?? With the short cranks it is either 95% effort or get off and walk...
Try going one step short cranks (110mm) for a couple or more rides on the same route. Then switch back to your 127s. Your should find your confidence and effort issues disappear.

The shorter the cranks are the more skill you need to climb and ride at a slower pace. Once you attain the skill to ride slow and not charge off at a higher speed you should no longer need to be over exerting above a level of effort you can sustain.

Switching to an even shorter length forces you to adapt and develop faster. Then when you return to the 127s it might become your new favorite length or they may even seem long now.

JM
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Old 2017-05-19, 04:39 PM   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MUCFreerider View Post
So yesterday I had one of those "cloud with a silver lining" experiences...
My muni skills have improved over the last few years and I've moved from 24" to 26" to now 29+ (30.5") and both my uphill and downhill have really improved. So for yesterday's ride I switched out my 150mm cranks for 127s... and technically I did incredibly great: I was able to ride up almost all uphills that I ride on my 26 with 150s and my 29+ with 150s. As expected short/fast uphills were easier but even super steep slow crank-and-pause hills went great (that was really amazing and a great feeling!). And downhill I was able to ride (almost) as well as with the 150s. Only for hops and drops did I really feel the difference. And, as expected I was *WAY* faster. It was amazing.

However, there was a major down side:

But what I couldn't believe is just how incredibly tired and exhausted I was. I've thought about it a lot and the only theory I can come up with is: b/c of the shorter cranks I am forced to spin fast _all_ the time. Uphill I must use high force to keep riding and downhill I must spin fast. And slow-speed/technical then requires concentration and force on the pedals to stay on the uni. And (duh) as there's no freewheel there is no rest or recovery time at all.

After the first hour or so I had to stop and take a break and then for the next 3+ hours I had to get off and take a significant break about every 20 minutes or so because I was so thoroughly exhausted. This was on my normal 2-4 hour route that I've been doing 1-2 times a week for the last 2+ years and am I usually never forced to stop for recovery although I usually take 1-2 breaks just because and to eat/drink. But my level of tiredness was crazy and near the end of the ride, even after taking a break for 20 minutes I would get back on and ride up one hill and 10 minutes later again feel like I was about to die... (I'm guessing I had already massively over-exerted myself so I had no reserves left at all)

I've done lots of enduance sports over the years (mtb, road/trac/crit biking, trail and mountain running, etc.) but I've never been as thoroughly exhausted on a fun/training ride as I was: ok, maybe at the end of some multi-hour races where I pushed myself really hard, but never from a training ride. Or maybe a few times due to high heat in >95F (35C) high humidity, but yesterday was around 22C(72F). And I've bonked due to lack of energy, but that is different and was not the problem (after taking a break and eating and drinking it was not significantly better).

Anyone ever experienced this when dopping down crank length? I had a simliar experience about 6 months ago when I had dual hole 150/127 cranks on my 36 and had had them at 127 for a road tour and rode to the trailhead and just thought, "It'll never work, but I'll try and ride the trail with the 127s..." With the 127s on the 36 I wasn't able to ride everything, especially the steep uphills (but my technique has also improved since then), but I was also totally exhausted after 15 to 20 minutes.

So I'm not sure:
Do I leave the 127s on and expect (hope) that my fitness will improve with time?
Or do I switch back to the 150s as all-in-all it is more fun to not feel like I'm about to puke out my guts from exhaustion? (and today I still feel like I got hit by a truck)

Maybe I'll break out my heart-rate monitor again. However if I remember correctly from my last attempts with muni, the correlation of the HR with exertion was not nearly as informative as in cycling or running (I assume because you do a lot more then just push the pedal/feet but also have to balance). And then what do I do if I find I am riding in too high % zone? I can't switch gears or slow my footspeed?? With the short cranks it is either 95% effort or get off and walk...
Try going one step short cranks (110mm) for a couple or more rides on the same route. Then switch back to your 127s. Your should find your confidence and effort issues disappear.

The shorter the cranks are the more skill you need to climb and ride at a slower pace. Once you attain the skill to ride slow and not charge off at a higher speed you should no longer need to be over exerting above a level of effort you can sustain.

Switching to an even shorter length forces you to adapt and develop faster. Then when you return to the 127s it might become your new favorite length or they may even seem long now.

JM
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Old 2017-05-20, 04:14 PM   #60
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So I stuck with the 127s and today was so much better. I think the main difference was that I wasn't stressing and forcing myself to go as fast as possible -- last time I felt like I was about to fall off on every uphill -- this time I just relaxed and chose my pace. Amazingly I still made it up almost all the steep uphills! For some I was going ultra slow - half-crank, pause-1-2-3-, half-crank, pause, etc. just a few weeks ago I couldn't have imagined having this kind of control on super steep gravely trail uphills :-)

I did my normal ride and didn't have to take a break until my half-way point close to 2 hours in :-)

In addition to even more control on the uphills and doing great on the downhill (although I didn't do the route with the 30-60cm drops). What was even cooler was that I was able to jump on the shorter cranks which I hadn't been able to do before. On the way back I cleanly cleared about 20 logs in the 6-10cm range at full speed! That really feels cool!

I think I'll try the 127s maybe one more ride and then switch back to the 150s. As BungeeJoe said and I know from my 36, the 150s will probably feel so long and I should have monster control! Hopefully it'll help me get better at landing bigger drops in the future. Plus the jumping short transfer well too.
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