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Old 06-17-05, 08:43 PM   #1
HiYoSilver
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Is something wrong?

Am I doing something wrong? Instead of steadily getting more engetic, I'm getting tired. I thought I was keeping it simple and easy. 5 mile commutes, so 20 to 30 minutes rides. I've increased from 1 or 2 a week to 3 or 4. I don't ride on the weekends. At first it was great, my times were getting shorter and shorter. I don't have the numbers now, but I tracked times for last 12 days. I started low and went up until about the 3rd ride, then it leveled and now both the AM and PM commutes are dropping in time. I'm not trying anything special. I'm not pushing hard, just riding. I'm not losing weight as I had hoped I might.

So what's going on? Is this just a normal part of getting back in shape, or am I doing something wrong? I don't want to get too discouraged and give up biking. I'll be getting easier gears in about 2 weeks, so that'll help on the low energy stretches.

Ideas? Or just gut thru it and hope for the best?
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Old 06-18-05, 07:08 AM   #2
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get your blood checked. full chemical and blood count analysis.
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Old 06-18-05, 08:12 AM   #3
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Take a few days off. Your body may be telling you it needs a rest.
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Old 06-18-05, 02:19 PM   #4
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I ride once a week and that is a hard ride, and go to the gym twice a week for a 2 hour work out. Wish I could cut the gym and ride more often but that is not possible. There are times when I get tired, cannot work as hard, or cannot be bothered to work hard. Its the cannot be bothered that gets me, as Once I get into the swing of sweating, then it goes away.

Set yourself a bit of a target. You say you are not working hard, so why not do one of the return home commutes, to where you will work hard. Not flat out all the way, but say 5 minutes riding as normal, then 1 minute near sprint. If one minute is too long, then 30 seconds.When you get your breath back, 2 or 3 minutes later, (or even 10 if it is that long) sprint again.
I think you may have reached a level that your current fitness will allow. Ideal for a starter, but you now need to progress. With a little extra effort, you will find that journey times will be shorter, you will get stronger, get fitter, and the weight will come off. When you reach the plateaux again, up the work effort to improve again. I will also add that if it don't hurt it ain't working, but if it hurts that much--slow down.
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Old 06-18-05, 04:48 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
At first it was great, my times were getting shorter and shorter. I don't have the numbers now, but I tracked times for last 12 days. I started low and went up until about the 3rd ride, then it leveled and now both the AM and PM commutes are dropping in time.
That's the way my weeks are. Monday I'm fired up. Tuesday the same. Wednesday the ride is a little harder. Thursday I'm really tired on the ride home. Friday I have to drive.
Joe Friel says to listen to your body. If you feel tired, take a day off, two if necessary.
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Old 06-18-05, 04:59 PM   #6
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Do you wear a heart rate monitor? Even with short rides, you would do yourself well to monitor your engine. Once you establish your personal riding regimen, you will get an idea of what your heart's doing each ride. There's a lot of info out there on the subject so I won't bore you with much text at this time.

I'm 54 and ride six days a week. The monitor helps me understand my conditioning and how hard I should go on certain days when I'm not sure...or how easy.

After a long layoff (from '95 until '02) I started riding again three years ago. I'm back to my old shape and, frankly, better than before. It wasn't easy for that first six months! I really think the monitor played a big part in it for me.
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Old 06-18-05, 06:27 PM   #7
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It sounds like you are doing the same ride over and over. In cycling or any activity, repetition of the same workout will get you nowhere fast. If you want to improve your performance, you must set goals and do a little more each week.

You can choose a goal for yourself and figure out ways to meet the goal. Here are some examples that I have worked on in the last couple years:
  • Increase my cadence (higher pedal rpm) to get better cardiovascular performance and better mechanical efficiency.
  • Increase resistance (use harder gears) to improve muscular strength and performance.
  • Increase mileage of my rides to increase stamina and endurance.
  • Climb hills to improve strength and overall performance.
  • Work on my overall speed with a combination of the first two (harder gears and faster cadence).
After I set a goal, I measure my baseline (current or pre-training performance), then establish firm weekly goals for improving my performance. I work on each area for a set length of time (maybe 6 to 8 weeks), then move on to a new goal. I found that it works well to work on only one thing at a time, and to change my emphasis periodically. Right now, I am riding on country roads (I am basically an urban rider) to improve my speed and distance. My training method has been a lot of fun and it helps me to keep focussed, something that can be difficult for me.
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Old 06-18-05, 07:25 PM   #8
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How is your thyroid function? It's pretty easy to measure your basal temperature just before rising from bed each morning. If it's below about 98.0F, you may be suffering from hypothyroidism. Try increasing the iodine in your diet; if that doesn't help, you may need medical assistance.
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Old 06-19-05, 08:40 AM   #9
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A pre-existing medical condition that is now coming to light. Consider your medical history, your age, mental stress factors. Middle age people who start to ride, ride for mostly health reasons knowing that riding is at least childhood fun.
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Old 06-20-05, 04:46 PM   #10
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thanks for the info. I just rechecked the data this am and I didn't realize I jumped from 1/wk to 2 weeks of 4x/wk. Plump tuckered out and didn't know it. Commute today was just fine.

As an aside, is over 50 still middle age? 50ish has been a few years ago and definitely don't feel middle age.
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Old 06-20-05, 05:08 PM   #11
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Quote:
thanks for the info. I just rechecked the data this am and I didn't realize I jumped from 1/wk to 2 weeks of 4x/wk. Plump tuckered out and didn't know it. Commute today was just fine.
Right on. First of all things, just listen to your body. It has pretty good messages. Glad you are OK.


Quote:
Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
As an aside, is over 50 still middle age? 50ish has been a few years ago and definitely don't feel middle age.
That is why I think it is best not to use words such as "middle age" as no one really knows what age that is.

Just use the real ages. I.e., I am 65 yo. Someone else is 54; and a 3rd is 74. Who is "middle aged?"
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Old 06-21-05, 04:23 PM   #12
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thanks fox. Only problem today was a flat tire and I cut leaving time too close and had a conference call this morning. First thing to do tonight is fix that blasted flat and figure out what's causing it. what an annoying problem.
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Old 06-22-05, 04:18 PM   #13
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Some days are a lot better than others & for no apparant reason, I think its just the way we are made. There are days when I realy dont feel like getting on the bike but after ive done a 4--5Ks I start to feel good & have done some realy good rides ,other times I still feel like $#it so I turn it into a slow ,shorter ride avoiding the bigger hills & just concentrate on perfecting pedaling style & let it go at that
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Old 06-22-05, 07:19 PM   #14
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Makes sense. I left off 2 cols on spreadsheet: 1. how do you feel, and 2. are you riding into the wind. I think thurs/fridays will be my pedalling style days.
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