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Old 07-29-09, 08:06 PM   #1
SaiKaiTai
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Amazing, what we can do

It's been 3 years since I started back at this little sport... activity... endeavor... whatever and I figured I've done enough, it's time to push a little and see what happens.

So, I hit (small but significant) hills at a higher cadence or bigger gear (or both, but I'm getting ahead of myself).

Or, I push a bigger gear in the flats

Or, I get out of the saddle and climb.

Or, I set up sprint points and try to kill them.

OK, you get the idea... I try to "hut my bode-ie" as Paul Sherwen would say.
Open up that suitcase of pain.

Funny thing, it *does* hurt and usually pretty quickly.
The bode-ie doesn't like being asked to do things out of its comfort zone. Well, duh.

Funny thing, too... if you keep at it and deal with the discomfort, the body adjusts and accepts it.
Now, you have to go farther, longer, etc. to get into difficulty.
And that bar just keeps moving up and you right along with it. Wow. Who knew?

The other thing about it is that your heart begins to freak a little less. It likes to suffer, too. Double wow.

Case in point. I live at the top of a .3 mile, 8% average (max 15%). Used to be I'd use my 30x30 in the saddle as I ground all the way up beating at 168bpm at the top. 165 bpm was my medically imposed max.

Came up that way today.
39x21 out of the saddle and I wasn't grinding anything.
I was riding like I wanted this climb to end as soon as possible.
Right at the crest, I finally collapsed into the saddle and shifted down.
HR? 158.

And this isn't new, either. It's been like that for a while.
I just finally figured out that it's real.
I'm not imagining it, it's not a fluke.
And it's starting to seem like I'm adjusting faster than before, too.
Of course, I realize that I'll never been a great climber... asthma is always going to be a limiting factor.
Tough to think about "spinning 90s" in any gear when you're fighting for oxygen.
Nothing I can about it? Then I can live with the limitation, it's not my fault.
Unless I let it stop me.

Amazing what we can do, isn't it?

Just push, baby.
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Old 07-29-09, 09:34 PM   #2
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Yes SaiKaiTai it is amazing, and wonderful.

And it sounds like you're doing everything right, or right for you, which is what counts. I have asthma too, and I've found that if I take my albuterol like the Dr. recommends, I have no symptoms, even in cold air, even at altitude in cold air.

Do I always take it? No. I'd like to think I can live without drugs (vitamins excepted), but sometimes I just have to face it. Esp. for a 4:00 AM start (most always cold) of a double century.

Unless your asthma doesn't respond to albuterol . . .

But if it does, that will allow you to raise the bar further still!

Rick / OCRR

Last edited by Rick@OCRR; 07-30-09 at 12:48 PM.
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Old 07-30-09, 11:09 AM   #3
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OK, I stand corrected. It looks like only Rick and myself are amazed.

I do take Albuterol as needed and I also use Advair daily.
Even at my best, I only have about 66% of "normal" lung capacity (up from 60%) so I'm guessing this is just a wall I'm going to hit. Mostly, it's not that much of an issue, as long as I avoid those 9% climbs.
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Old 07-30-09, 11:27 AM   #4
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I'm amazed!!
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Old 07-30-09, 12:53 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaiKaiTai View Post
Mostly, it's not that much of an issue, as long as I avoid those 9% climbs.
Agreed, the 9% climbs are tough. I can hammer right along on 5-6% climbs, get bogged down on 7-8% climbs, but 9% and above are a real struggle/slog.

Can I do it? Yes.

Is it fun? No, not exactly.

But compared to 18% (Potrero Road and the Mt. Baldy Ski Lift Road), 9% is not bad at all!

Rick / OCRR
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Old 07-30-09, 05:48 PM   #6
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SaiKaiTai,

The conditioning effect in humans always amazes me.

If you want to improve, you have to push it now and then.

hang tough,
Jeff
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