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Old 06-25-07, 11:31 AM   #1
SaiKaiTai
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What a weekend. Ooof!

Did a really nice "it's great to be alive" 25 miles on Saturday (set out to do 20). What a beautiful day to out in it. Blues skies. Moderate temperatures. Slight breeze. Ahhh... Still trying to get myself fully back from vacation. Made sure I threw in a few good, short (1/4 mile or less) but steep climbs. Did some out of the saddle to give myself a good "push". Kept my HR in check mostly, brushing -but never exceeding- my cardiologist imposed limit. Got my quads burning a bit. It felt great. Nice to know 25 is already so doable even after almost 2 weeks off the bike. I even took the hard way home. Did most of the climb standing, too.

I did notice something interesting. I've read about it but never actually tried it. To stand and climb, you normally use a taller gear than you would use in the saddle. When I got about half way up my climb home, I started to run out of gas and needed a lower gear so I sat back down, shifted, and stood back up again.
I found that, when I sat down to pedal (and shift), it was easier to maintain my cadence than if I had been sitting the whole time and trying to push the gear I was in. In fact, I would never even TRY using this gear to climb in the saddle. As I say, I've heard about this "effect" (sitting down for a rest, as it were) but I'd never experienced it before. It was kind of odd.

Then I did a 3 hour, 3 set gig yesterday. Standing the whole time. You might not think so but that's a LOT of work. I am feeling it in the legs today for sure. It was a really good gig, though.

And today it is beautiful out again and I'm having a hard time telling myself that it will be a rest day when I get home. The road, it is already calling me.
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Old 06-25-07, 11:35 AM   #2
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It seems to me that you're fully recovered from the vacation
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Old 06-25-07, 11:44 AM   #3
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Getting there... my legs get a little "dead" on me sooner than they did before vacation but I can push through it.

Oh, one other thing... going to the gig yesterday I had to drive the same road I did my 35 miler on a couple of weeks ago. I was amazed at how long a ride it seemed in a car. I kept thinking: "I did this on a bike? Wow..." It just seemed like it went on forever. And it help me set a new goal.
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Old 06-25-07, 11:49 AM   #4
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Nice Post, you realized that you 'made progress' when you can rest going up hills. Not many folks understand that.
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Old 06-25-07, 12:13 PM   #5
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Good ride report...sounds like you're getting stronger.

BTW, it's possible to shift gears while standing, without sitting down to do it. You need to kind of back off the pedal pressure momentarily, but it's definitely doable with a bit of practice.
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Old 06-25-07, 12:30 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SSP
Good ride report...sounds like you're getting stronger.

BTW, it's possible to shift gears while standing, without sitting down to do it. You need to kind of back off the pedal pressure momentarily, but it's definitely doable with a bit of practice.
"Practice" being the key word, for sure. I did try this out and was met with a mighty kaCHUNK! as I dropped into to gear. Recognizing that "kaCHUNK" is not a good thing to hear, I didn't try it again. But, if I can learn to back off the pressure uphill in the saddle, then I can learn it uphill and standing, too.
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Old 06-25-07, 01:00 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaiKaiTai
Then I did a 3 hour, 3 set gig yesterday. Standing the whole time. You might not think so but that's a LOT of work. I am feeling it in the legs today for sure. It was a really good gig, though.
Wow! What a great ride! And YES, I agree that is a LOT of work.
One of the things I'm trying to work on, is extending my time out of the saddle climbing hills. After a time, the burn in the upper thighs gets pretty intense. NO WAY could I stand for 3 hours!
Congrats! Wish I were at that point.
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Old 06-25-07, 01:04 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MNBikeguy
Wow! What a great ride! And YES, I agree that is a LOT of work.
One of the things I'm trying to work on, is extending my time out of the saddle climbing hills. After a time, the burn in the upper thighs gets pretty intense. NO WAY could I stand for 3 hours!
Congrats! Wish I were at that point.
Just to be clear about this -not wanting to take credit where none is due- I meant literally standing at a gig.
Please refer to the photo to the left.

3 hours standing uphill on a bike? Another story altogether... I can't even climb IN the saddle for 3 hours
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Old 06-25-07, 01:06 PM   #9
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LOL... Thanks for the clarification. I still think your ride was fantastic.
I need better reading 'comprenshun' skills.
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Old 06-25-07, 02:28 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaiKaiTai
Just to be clear about this -not wanting to take credit where none is due- I meant literally standing at a gig.
Please refer to the photo to the left.

3 hours standing uphill on a bike? Another story altogether... I can't even climb IN the saddle for 3 hours
Just standing around for any time gets me. I have to take a gentle stroll from time to time to make sure the circulation is still there.

Now your next stage for a long ride is not necessarily to do miles- Do Time instead. When I was in training for my 12 hour ride on the Tandem- I used to do 4 hour non stop rides sometimes- Didn't matter on the distance, speed or degree of hills. It was literally time in the saddle that counted. This was interspersed with a 30 mile non stop off-road taking in hills and technical riding. When I could do that in 2.5 hrs- then I was fit enough for the long ride.

Now occasionally you will get to the top of a hill and your legs will feel dead. Do NOT STOP to recover. Ride over the top of the hill and spin at a silly fast speed. And I mean silly. Keep pressure on the pedals but just. This will help to get rid of the lactic acid and the legs will recover pretty quick.

Now as to climbing out of the saddle- What a fantastic way to give the butt a rest. I put myself in a higher gear at the top of hills and out of the saddle and push. That is if I just need a different use of the legs but sometimes I have run out of gears and there is just that little extra speed required to get over the technical bits- or the final bit of the climb that has steepened. Out of the saddle and as you have found out- When you sit down again- you do have a fresher set of legs.
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