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  1. #1
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    That's the earliest I've ever cramped on a ride

    I did a pretty humid Century today and I actually starting cramping in my sleep this past Wednesday night!! I must have been dreaming about riding in our Carolina's humidity??? Actually I had been on my legs on warm pavement for 7 hours at the Time Trials Wednesday evening so that didn't help.

    My calves actually did start cramping within the first 10 miles today and I fought leg cramps for another 90 miles. I could spin a pretty easy gear at 90 rpm but if I tried to mash a gear to stay with a group things just locked up on me. It was a pretty flat century and could have easily ridden it in around 5 hours with some groups but soft pedaling cost me about 45 mins. Debated taking the shorter route but said what the heck.

    Now it's time to rehydrate with some margaritas with salt on the rim.............
    Ride your Ride!!

  2. #2
    Senior Member teachme's Avatar
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    Oh yes! margaritas with salt are very good for cramps... Follow that up with pickle juice! It works...
    Official member of the Brotherhood of Clyde...

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  3. #3
    Senior Member Bikey Mikey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by teachme View Post
    Oh yes! margaritas with salt are very good for cramps... Follow that up with pickle juice! It works...
    OMG! I puckered up just reading that--Margaritas with a pickle juice chaser....*pucker*

  4. #4
    Senior Member yodatic's Avatar
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    El Presidente' fishbowl margaritas ! ( with nachos!)

  5. #5
    Lance Legweak HIPCHIP's Avatar
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    Cramping can be caused by a number of things. The medical term is Muscle Guarding, where you've stretched the muscle and injured it (strain). The muscle tightens up to stop it from being further stretched and injured more. Problem is, this is like stepping on a water hose, this restricts blood flow, which causes more damage, which leads to more muscle guarding, etc. A strain can be caused by having a slight cold, an allergy, using the muscle in a way it was not trained to be used, as well as being dehydrated. You should do an easy light stretch on the area. I recommend hold the stretch for 30 seconds, relax, then stretch for 45 seconds, relax, then hold for 1 minute. That will teach the muscle that stretching is OK and not going to injure it more. You also will need to do strengthening to replace the injured muscle tissue. Make sure you do a good warm up and are well hydrated. After you are done working out, do your stretches, then ice for 20 minutes MAX, you can take 40 minutes off and then ice again for 20 minutes. This can be done all day and ice will relax the muscle.
    Margaritas are great, but just remember that alcohol will dehydrate you and may make things worse.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Timtruro's Avatar
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    Is pickle juice really good for this type issue? Is potassium involved?
    "If there are no cigars in heaven, I shall not go." -Mark Twain

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  7. #7
    Lance Legweak HIPCHIP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Timtruro View Post
    Is pickle juice really good for this type issue? Is potassium involved?
    Potassium helps to make the muscles work, so a strain can be caused by lack of potassium, but a strain can be caused by so many things that it's hard to say what causes it. You could be slightly allergic to something, not even enough to know that you are allergic to it, and it could cause the muscle to not do what it's supposed to do for just a fraction of a second, and then you get a slight muscle tear (strain) which causes the cramp (muscle guarding). A slight cold can do it, dehydration can do it, over stretching the muscle because you are using it in a different way I.E. you had your leg/foot in a different position made you use the muscle in a slightly different direction, that can cause it too.

    Bananas have good potassium, so that would be better than pickle juice. Pickle juice is basically an urban legend and is no better than anything else. A good sports drink, like Gatorade, is really good since it replaces all the electrolytes your body has lost. I always water my Gatorade down by 50% so that I get more water in my system and I don't get too much sugar which can actually make your energy go down.

    Again, a good warm up, stretching before and after, icing for no more than 20 minutes on/40 minutes off, and good nutrition including electrolyte replacement, will do more for you than just about anything. A strengthening program on the muscle group your are having problems with, and using full range of motion in different positions, will also help to strengthen the muscle group and stop the strains.

  8. #8
    Banned. Mr. Beanz's Avatar
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    Last time I did this ride in 09, I cramped right at the 12 mile mark. Just before the start of the climb. It was wet, foggy and cold for the first 25 miles. I was well hydrated and fueled. My guess was the cold wet legs. Didn't bring leg cover as previous years the weather was nice to warm. Darn June gloom!

    I lost about 5 minutes waiting for the cramp to vanish.


    Profile Bear by gulpxtreme, on Flickr

  9. #9
    Lance Legweak HIPCHIP's Avatar
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    If you were cold then your body could have been working on keeping the muscles warm, which delayed sending the chemicals to the muscles, or just being cold caused them to not work normally. SO many different things can cause problems.

    In case you were wondering, I'm and old MX racer, and I'd race on Sunday then go see the Athletic Trainer at school on Monday to fix all my "OWies", so when I graduated from my JC I took Kinesiology and specialized in Sports Medicine to figure out how to fix myself. Ended up becoming a Certified Athletic Trainer, but that was a long time a go. So if you have any questions, I'll try and help. Not up on all the current trends, but still have enough knowledge to be able to fix a lot of the stuff that makes you go "OUCH!" (LOL)

    The biggest problem with cramps is what they call the Pain-Spasm-Pain cycle, where the swelling slows down the blood flow, which causes more tissue damage, which causes more swelling, etc, etc. A light PAIN FREE stretch will help stop this cycle, as will the ice (but once you ice, you're done for the day). A "Ace" wrap can help, as will taping, but unless you know what your are doing, tape/wraps can do more harm than good, so taking it easy and trying to get the cramp to release is the best. Problem is, rubbing a cramp can be like rubbing road rash, it just makes it worse. Sometimes it's best to grind up some ice, put half on the cramp, and the other half mix with tequila and margarita mix!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by HIPCHIP View Post
    If you were cold then your body could have been working on keeping the muscles warm, which delayed sending the chemicals to the muscles, or just being cold caused them to not work normally. SO many different things can cause problems.
    I cramped really quickly on a ride once, I think because I was cold... No warmup at all and I did something stupid - I was planning on a fast time on this ride, and it started with a hill AND a strong headwind... I'm very strong in a headwind, and figured I could ride away from the group I was with if I could get ahead of them, so I sprinted the hill...

    ... B A D ... I D E A.

    Within 10 minutes I had noticed something was wrong in my left hip adductor ... within 15 minutes the group was back with me, and within 30 minutes it was in full-on spasm. I had to stop and spend about 5 minutes gently stretching it out and even after that, I was at roughly 75% of my performance level... it sucked. I'll never do something that stupid again

  11. #11
    Lance Legweak HIPCHIP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlbertaBeef View Post
    I cramped really quickly on a ride once, I think because I was cold... No warmup at all and I did something stupid - I was planning on a fast time on this ride, and it started with a hill AND a strong headwind... I'm very strong in a headwind, and figured I could ride away from the group I was with if I could get ahead of them, so I sprinted the hill...

    ... B A D ... I D E A.

    Within 10 minutes I had noticed something was wrong in my left hip adductor ... within 15 minutes the group was back with me, and within 30 minutes it was in full-on spasm. I had to stop and spend about 5 minutes gently stretching it out and even after that, I was at roughly 75% of my performance level... it sucked. I'll never do something that stupid again
    If you lived in a cold climate and your body was used to starting out like that it might have been OK, but if your body wasn't used to it then yes, BAD IDEA! Your body is working on keeping warm and it's not used to that, so that messes up the normal way your body works and BOOM, instant strain! Same as the first hot day, a lot of people dehydrate and get cramps, so you have to ease into stuff. It takes the body 2 weeks to acclimate to new climates so going out and hitting it hard with a change of weather is bad, even when you are a 19 year old athlete in good shape. First two weeks of training/season are the worst in a Training Room, lots and lots of injuries.

  12. #12
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    mile 65. Average speed 18.2

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