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  1. #1
    Senior Member DanRH's Avatar
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    I started feeling not so great lately on the bike

    I'm 56 and I ride 3-5 double's a year, somewhere around 7-8,000 miles a year. Last year I did five double (four of them being quite hard). I ride the AIDS ride every year from SF to LA for the last 14 years. I never really take off during the winter since I'm in a great riding area (SF Bay Area). Since the beginning of the year, there are times when I feel like I'm bonking. No power to the legs and for a while a racing heart. I had it checked out and even had a 24 hour Holter heart rate monitor. The doctors findings were "clinically unremarkable". I made sure I hit some steep hills (which I try not to avoid...ever). Oh, my preferred type of riding is road, almost 90% of the time on my fixie. I don't do doubles on the fixie (except Solvang). I ride 100-150 miles a week on average spread out over 3-4 rides.

    So, what I've noticed is that on longer rides, after I've had lunch, I feel 100% better. Is it that simple? When I start out in the morning, I eat the typical oatmeal, hard boiled egg and banana. I have a good diet regimen but admittedly I'm a little overweight at 190 (I'm 5'9").

    Any advice would be appreciated.
    Dan Hertlein http://danhertlein.com
    2009 daVinci Design Joint Venture 700 Tandem
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  2. #2
    Life is good RonH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DanRH View Post
    So, what I've noticed is that on longer rides, after I've had lunch, I feel 100% better. Is it that simple? When I start out in the morning, I eat the typical oatmeal, hard boiled egg and banana.
    Do you eat anything mid-morning? What time of day do you ride?
    My bikes --> 2001 Litespeed Tuscany---2013 Cannondale CAAD 10 2 (5) "Racing Edition"

    Life is like a 10-speed bicycle. Most of us have gears we never use. ~ Charles Schultz

  3. #3
    Senior Member DanRH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RonH View Post
    Do you eat anything mid-morning? What time of day do you ride?
    Usually a bar or something. Also most rides are in the morning although I ride usually once a week in the afternoon when I commute 40 miles home from work. One way...
    Dan Hertlein http://danhertlein.com
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    1997 Bontrager Privateer MTB

  4. #4
    Banned. The Weak Link's Avatar
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    You might have better luck with this on the training and nutrition or the road cycling subforums.

  5. #5
    Wheezing Geezer Bud Bent's Avatar
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    Nutrition on the bike seems to always be a moving target for many people. I have a friend who's ridden RAAM who had what had always worked for him previously suddenly fail.

    If it feels like bonking, but the doctors can't find anything wrong, I vote for serious experimentation with your on the bike nutrition.
    Bud
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    They told me it's ok to post mileage over in the commuting forum, so you'll probably find me there these days.

  6. #6
    www.ocrebels.com Rick@OCRR's Avatar
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    Hi Dan,

    This may be overly obvious, but try drinking Hammer Sustained Energy or Perpetuem as you ride, i.e. don't "wait for lunch" but rather keep the nutrition going into your system on a fairly consistant basis. I use one bottle of Hammer, one of water, and rotate those as you ride.

    Or, on doubles, I use a Camelback and put the Hammer mix in there (plain water in the bottle), which works fine (but requires a detailed cleaning of the Camelback after the ride!). Just FYI I rode 9 doubles last year, but the only "quite hard" one was Mt. Tam.

    Rick / OCRR

  7. #7
    Senior Member
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    Hello Dan

    I've been type 1 diabetic for -oh my, a very long time, 35 years since I started using insulin.

    One thing I've learned to respect is that if, in your words "There are times when I feel like I'm bonking.." -------- then I'm bonking. No further time waste on speculation. Stop any and every activity and do corrective carbohydrate, right this very second! Hypoglycemia has no patience!

    (One other thing you might get checked out is haemaglobin. If that's low, it feels just like a hypo/bonk)

    Best of luck to you

  8. #8
    Senior Member JazNine's Avatar
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    Good advice to try energy drinks for awhile while riding and see if it makes a difference. One other thought ... could you be overtraining? A couple of rest days per week has helped me in the past.

  9. #9
    Climbing Above It All BikeWNC's Avatar
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    If this feeling of being tired/bonking is new and nothing else has changed like diet, sleep or overall health, then it might be time for a period off the bike. You mentioned how you never really take any time off the bike in the winter and your volume remains the same. It could be you are getting a bit stale or overtrained. A racing heart, feeling of bonking or loss of power can all be indications that you need to back off for a bit. Give your body time to rest and recover and see if that helps.

  10. #10
    Dan J chinarider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikeWNC View Post
    If this feeling of being tired/bonking is new and nothing else has changed like diet, sleep or overall health, then it might be time for a period off the bike. You mentioned how you never really take any time off the bike in the winter and your volume remains the same. It could be you are getting a bit stale or overtrained. A racing heart, feeling of bonking or loss of power can all be indications that you need to back off for a bit. Give your body time to rest and recover and see if that helps.
    That was my thought. It may be as simple as taking it easy for a week or 2. Also as others have said, you may need better on the bike nutrition. If you read the regimen followed by pros, they eat & drink at frequent, regular intervals while riding. Probably much more than most recreational riders. Granted, their energy needs are higher, but the point is to be ahead of the curve is taking care of energy needs.

    Dan
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    “The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts.”
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  11. #11
    Senior Member NOS88's Avatar
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    The way our bodies process food and recover from work changes as we age. You may have just hit a new marker in how your body is going to work for the next bit of time. I know my functional abilities have improved as I've started eating smaller amounts but much more frequently during the day. And, you may need more recovery time than you are giving yourself. I'd take a few days off, keep a steady flow of healthy foods through out the day, and see how I felt in a week. BTW, kudos for going to get things checked out. Too many of us men don't have strong enough "health seeking behaviors".
    A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking. - S. Wright

  12. #12
    Senior Member DanRH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick@OCRR View Post
    Hi Dan,

    This may be overly obvious, but try drinking Hammer Sustained Energy or Perpetuem as you ride, i.e. don't "wait for lunch" but rather keep the nutrition going into your system on a fairly consistant basis. I use one bottle of Hammer, one of water, and rotate those as you ride.

    Or, on doubles, I use a Camelback and put the Hammer mix in there (plain water in the bottle), which works fine (but requires a detailed cleaning of the Camelback after the ride!). Just FYI I rode 9 doubles last year, but the only "quite hard" one was Mt. Tam.

    Rick / OCRR
    Thanks. Usually on longer rides, I use either SE or Perpetuem. I will eat more and rest more. Thanks to all!!!!
    Dan Hertlein http://danhertlein.com
    2009 daVinci Design Joint Venture 700 Tandem
    2007 Independent Fabrications Steel Crown Jewel Single
    2011 Volagi Liscio Ultegra Single
    2006 Lemond Filmore Fixed
    1997 Bontrager Privateer MTB

  13. #13
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    After age 55 is when the power loss starts to creep in. I was a very good golfer ( 0 index) until i hit 55, started losing distance off the tee big time. On the Senior Golf tour after 55 they seldom win. Hale Irwin tore it up from 50 to 55 then dropped off the face of the earth. No matter what you do it only gets worse. I hit off the white tee's now and planning to move to the red tee's when the time comes. I can still shoot in the hi 70's but its disgusting because you remember what real power felt like. All i can say is to take more breaks between long rides, increase your recovery time and enjoy what you have now. I will be 65 in may cycling has helped me increase my fitness.

  14. #14
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    Hey, everyone has free health care now so what is stopping you from going to the doc?

  15. #15
    Senior Member Wogster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oilman_15106 View Post
    Hey, everyone has free health care now so what is stopping you from going to the doc?
    Welcome to the real world, there is no such thing as free health care, it's still coming out of the same pocket, yours. Here is how it works, in Canada and most places with government health insurance. We pay much higher taxes. Sales tax here in Ontario is 13%, and covers nearly everything from nappies to coffins. There are exceptions, but very few. We pay more income tax, and tax is the reason why gasoline is $3/gallon in the US and $1/L in Canada (equivalent $3.80/US Gallon).

    American's are under taxed now, the fact the US government didn't have a surplus during the mid 2000's when nearly every other government did, means that taxes during that period were far too low. Now toss in Government health care, which is going to cost the government a lot more then the number bandied about, and your very close to the brink Germany fell over in the 1920's. Here is the problem, once the government pays it for some, then those that pay it themselves are going to want the same deal. Why should Billy Gates have to pay $10,000 a year when Willy Gates gets it paid by the government, paid by Billy's taxes?

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