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Old 01-25-08, 08:27 AM   #1
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Bonking in training. WTF?

I'm guessing it's just the cold weather (35F, raining) that I've been training in lately, but I have bonked twice at the end 1-hr rides this week. My training recently jumped from ~6 hrs/wk to ~8 hrs/wk because of some fast commuting to a new campus (riding at high SST, near FTP). So it must be a combination of increased training load, not much dietary increase, and cold weather. I'm also losing weight.

Yesterday I even ate a Kudos bar 20m before I headed out yesterday. I've been 3 hrs from my last meal on departure for the last 3 years, and not bonked until this week, on rides up to 1.5 hrs.

Thoughts?
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Old 01-25-08, 08:32 AM   #2
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? You still shouldn't bonk after 1 hour.
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Old 01-25-08, 08:37 AM   #3
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I had the same thing happen when I was trying to train and not increase consumption. I was doing this contrary to a friend's advice who has had coaching for many years. He told me not to try and lose weight while training - eat what I need to eat (low fat, no junk) and ride, he told me. The easy weeks are for actual dietary cutbacks.

So now if I'm doing an easy ride I back off on food the day before. A hard ride (or a long one) means I fuel up. Maybe not conducive to losing weight but I need fitness as much as I could stand to lose some weight. As it is I found that my weight has been dropping anyway.

cdr

*edit* I found I was in a virtual bonk state all day when cutting back and still riding, so I was already getting the weak feeling, chills, etc., before I got on the bike.
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Old 01-25-08, 08:38 AM   #4
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? You still shouldn't bonk after 1 hour.
Yeah, hence my confusion. I've been doing this a loooong time and hadn't bonked previously for maybe 5 years. Now twice in the same week?

I guess I may just not be restoring muscle glycogen with all my additional SST riding at 90%. Need to eat more carbs daily?
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Old 01-25-08, 08:44 AM   #5
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*edit* I found I was in a virtual bonk state all day when cutting back and still riding, so I was already getting the weak feeling, chills, etc., before I got on the bike.
Yeah, I guess that's what's happening. I haven't had to deal with increasing a training load before, since I'm so time constrained. These commutes are "free" rides as far as the time is concerned. I'm not trying to lose weight, so I'll happily eat more.
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Old 01-25-08, 08:53 AM   #6
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Yeah, hence my confusion. I've been doing this a loooong time and hadn't bonked previously for maybe 5 years. Now twice in the same week?

I guess I may just not be restoring muscle glycogen with all my additional SST riding at 90%. Need to eat more carbs daily?
yeah, I figured out that I wasn't eating enough carbs. so I decreased my overall intake of fat a bit and replaced those with slow digesting carbs, which has made a noticeable difference.

It all depends on what your current diet looks like, though.

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Old 01-25-08, 09:03 AM   #7
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Dosent sound like a bonk to me but then again if you ask 10 folks what a bonk is you will get 10 different answers.
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Old 01-25-08, 09:11 AM   #8
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Dosent sound like a bonk to me but then again if you ask 10 folks what a bonk is you will get 10 different answers.
My symptoms:
Hungry enough to eat a truck tire.
Suddenly cold.
Hungry enough to eat a pedestrian.
Pissed off.
Hungry enough to eat Indian food.
Weak.
Strong sensations of hunger.
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Old 01-25-08, 09:14 AM   #9
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You're not bonking but rather are fatigued from the different type of training you've been doing for 2 months, which is stressing your body in an unfamiliar way than it's been stressed in a few years, + what you describe is very similar to me when I'm catching a cold. Get some vitamin C, chicken soup, Zicam, take a week of taper, and I bet you'll be fine.

I typically lose weight this time of year; at the end of a 4-week training block am more grouchy than normal, have an insatiable appetite, and feel dehydrated (thirsty) alot.
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Old 01-25-08, 09:17 AM   #10
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My understanding is that it can often take several days to fully restore glycogen levels depending on the severity of depletion, especially if you miss the refuel window. You didn't mention a recovery drink or meal after the bonk, if you're losing weight you're obviously in a calorie deficit, so the timing of your intake becomes that much more important.

Things I've found from training in the snow country: for me the cold really makes my body want to ramp up the calorie intake, and slows my recovery. If I have to layer up I stay away from intervals and intensity work. It's too easy to overheat or get chilled because your body can't do a good job of naturally thermo regulating; speed and wind (and rain) combine to create some pretty big effective external temperature swings and a sweat layer adds into this.

A lot of the folks I know who would do their intensity work outdoors in the cold always ended up sick.
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Old 01-25-08, 09:18 AM   #11
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sounds exactly like you need to eat more carbs. try maybe eating only two hours before you ride? i eat a meal pretty religiously every three hours and two hours between meals is my max. especially with higher-end aerobic work you're burning a higher percentage/ratio of carbs to fats. i'm hypoglycemic so when i'm hungry i realllly really feel it. if it gets particularly bad i'll start slurring my speech like i've had a couple too many adult beverages...
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Old 01-25-08, 09:21 AM   #12
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My symptoms:
Hungry enough to eat a truck tire.
Suddenly cold.
Hungry enough to eat a pedestrian.
Pissed off.
Hungry enough to eat Indian food.
Weak.
Strong sensations of hunger.
And I always hit the hot tub or hot shower if I got chilled right away and had some hot soup or drink. One less thing (getting warmed back up) your body has to burn calories for.

My $3.99.
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Old 01-25-08, 09:45 AM   #13
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Right after my rides, I have a turkey sandwich with cheese, PB&J sandwich, 14 oreos, and an apple -- all in the first 15 minutes after the ride. Hot cocoa with that on cold days.

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You're not bonking but rather are fatigued from the different type of training you've been doing for 2 months, which is stressing your body in an unfamiliar way than it's been stressed in a few years, + what you describe is very similar to me when I'm catching a cold.
I agree it is the training, but I'm not that fatigued. I'm doing less intense work than I have for the last several years, and I feel really strong. Power number back that up -- I'm getting stronger in all areas. I get two or three consecutive rest days every week, and ATL falls, TSB rises to -10 to -5.

Maybe it is time to let the TSB go positive for a couple days? Big races coming at the end of Feb and beg of March, so the timing might be right next week.
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Old 01-25-08, 10:15 AM   #14
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Right after my rides, I have a turkey sandwich with cheese, PB&J sandwich, 14 oreos, and an apple -- all in the first 15 minutes after the ride. Hot cocoa with that on cold days.



I agree it is the training, but I'm not that fatigued. I'm doing less intense work than I have for the last several years, and I feel really strong. Power number back that up -- I'm getting stronger in all areas. I get two or three consecutive rest days every week, and ATL falls, TSB rises to -10 to -5.

Maybe it is time to let the TSB go positive for a couple days? Big races coming at the end of Feb and beg of March, so the timing might be right next week.
That doesn't sound like a bonk to me. The only time I truly bonked, I could barely turn the pedals. Little kids with training wheels could have outridden me.

Could be nutrition, it could be the cold.

One last thing -- I seem to recall your getting on blood pressure medication last fall. Have you been monitoring your BP? Any changes in medication? Any recent prescription refills?
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Old 01-25-08, 10:31 AM   #15
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14 oreos

damn dude!


Didn't you say you were doing 3'a'days some times too?

I know the few times I've done this that my body has needed way more calories, exponentially more so.
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Old 01-25-08, 10:31 AM   #16
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My symptoms:
Hungry enough to eat a truck tire.
Suddenly cold.
Hungry enough to eat a pedestrian.
Pissed off.
Hungry enough to eat Indian food.
Weak.
Strong sensations of hunger.
That sounds like you are not eating enough and get extremely hungry and lazy, not really tired. Try to eat more and give it a whirl. See what happens. Since you upped your training you will have to figure out exactly what your body is asking for.
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Old 01-25-08, 11:03 AM   #17
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Your basal metabolism is higher when it is cold- your body's burning fuel to keep warm. That and not eating quite enough can bring on the bonk pretty quick.

Maybe you should step up to 15 oreos.
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Old 01-25-08, 11:27 AM   #18
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+ whatever to not eating enough.
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Old 01-25-08, 11:35 AM   #19
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My symptoms:
Hungry enough to eat a truck tire.
Suddenly cold.
Hungry enough to eat a pedestrian.
Pissed off.
Hungry enough to eat Indian food.
Weak.
Strong sensations of hunger.
Not before a ride, but I'll eat Indian food any other time ... yum yum
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Old 01-25-08, 12:30 PM   #20
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Over the past month I have really cut back on calories... To the point I feel pretty hungry all the time. On my long rides (over 2 hours) I take in food/gel/drinks like its a race just to avoid what you are seeing.

On shorter rides (under 1 1/2 hours) I havent hit a wall like you are but I get off the bike very hungry. My suggestion is the obvious.. up calorie intake a little or maybe give yourself a semi-free day once a week to eat whatever you want.
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Old 01-25-08, 12:56 PM   #21
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Not before a ride, but I'll eat Indian food any other time ... yum yum
Yup. I don't know what crap you're eating, WR, but indian food is good.
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Old 01-25-08, 01:56 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by waterrockets
I'm not that fatigued
That doesn't sound like a bonk to me. The only time I truly bonked, I could barely turn the pedals. Little kids with training wheels could have outridden me.

Could be nutrition, it could be the cold.

One last thing -- I seem to recall your getting on blood pressure medication last fall. Have you been monitoring your BP? Any changes in medication? Any recent prescription refills?
Sorry for the confusion, when I say "not that fatigued" I mean post ride, the next morning, and so on. During the ride, I'm dying to pedal, but driven by fear of hypothermia just to stay in the active recovery zone. These are absolutely bonks. I'm weak as hell at the time.

Yeah, good memory on the BP meds. My BP is fairly normal now at 122/71 (checked this weekend). These bonks came with 35 degree rain and increased training volume.

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damn dude!


Didn't you say you were doing 3'a'days some times too?

I know the few times I've done this that my body has needed way more calories, exponentially more
Yeah, I love the Oreos. I'm sort of doing 3-a-days four days/week with my commutes. The commute amounts to 15 minutes of SST up to FTP with a 5 m inute high-tempo "pseudo warmup." I'm hammering on the commutes, but they are short. The lunch rides remain at about 1 hour, but the commuting is adding 2.5 hours to my week of 6.

I think I need to eat more carbs. This may subside with the 70F sunshine coming next week too. This week I flatted 35 minutes into a 35F rain ride. Put frozen hands back into wet gloves, and climbed into my pain cave to finish my intervals. My bike looks like hell (worse than usual). The cold and wet is probably a significant part of this.
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Old 01-25-08, 01:57 PM   #23
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bonking sub 3 hours is weak

more taters at lunch will fix it
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Old 01-25-08, 03:20 PM   #24
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Sorry for the confusion, when I say "not that fatigued" I mean post ride, the next morning, and so on. During the ride, I'm dying to pedal, but driven by fear of hypothermia just to stay in the active recovery zone. These are absolutely bonks. I'm weak as hell at the time.

(snip)

I think I need to eat more carbs. This may subside with the 70F sunshine coming next week too. This week I flatted 35 minutes into a 35F rain ride. Put frozen hands back into wet gloves, and climbed into my pain cave to finish my intervals. My bike looks like hell (worse than usual). The cold and wet is probably a significant part of this.
I see from your earlier post what you meant now. Disregard the man at the keyboard.

I do admire you for the rain rides at 35F -- I'll ride down to about 20, but not in the rain. Such a ride would put me in a fairly surly mood.

You should watch out, however. Just as CF will spontaneously combust and/or melt in the sun, that ferrous ride of yours will rust out from under you in the rain, or so I'm told.
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Old 01-25-08, 03:38 PM   #25
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Is that where it went? Crap.
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