Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Johnston City, IL
Bikes: Specialized Sirrus 08
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I live in the hills of Southern Illinois. I know that might sound strange to some just north of I64, but its hilly down here.
Your rides sound alot like mine. I had/have knee pain in my right knee. The Dr/PA are cyclists and gave me a few tips. Alothough not ment as medical advise, for you, I believe they may help, and at the least not hurt.
1) Get straps for your feet. I got a set of cages at Dick's, about $40. They helped me use my hamstring (the back of the thigh) more and not over power the quads.
2)Stretch like hell! I do before, during at rest stops, after, before bed. You get the picture.
3)Bananas are your friend. I eat two or three a day. And they join me on rides as well.
4)Water, water, and water. Hydrate!
5) Find some flat land. I don't ride my hill route back to back to the gym anymore. I found a less hilly route about three miles away. Keeps me from overworking my quads.
Hills are great for building strength and muscle. And, they are hard to avoid in some areas. Even on shorter trips, like under 15 miles, they can wear you out till you get some down time. Like it was said before, try taking some lighter days before and after your hilly days. Give them legs some rest.