Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 04-26-06, 09:01 AM   #1
1ply
Plays in Traffic
Thread Starter
 
1ply's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Kitchener, Ontario
Bikes:
Posts: 484
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Cramping while riding

The past two rides I've been getting some severe cramps in the calves 1/2 hour into my ride. I'd like to do a century this year and it will take that much longer if I have to get off the bike to stretch every 30 minutes.

What can I do during or before the ride to avoid this? As a backgrounder, I'm clipped in on the balls of the feet and my seat seems to be at the correct height with my knee very slightly bent at the bottom of the pedal stroke. Could I be sitting too far (5mm ?) forwards? I can play with the seat position and not much else. Maybe I'm deficient in some vitamin - HELP!
1ply is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-06, 09:25 AM   #2
Tmax1
... .
 
Tmax1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: ...out there.
Bikes: IF, Litespeed, Bianchi, Fisher, Dahon, Schwinn, Burley
Posts: 452
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
After dia;ing in your bike fit, here's what I do:

I take four tablets of Bio Plasm. It's a "hoo doo guru" homeopathic salts concoction I find at my local health food store. It has all the essentials that you need potassium, magnesium, calcium and stuff.

Google it.

It works for me in preventing cramps. I use some afterwards also and don't cramp at night when I try to sleep.

I've been on rides and seen people cramp to the point of not walking and a dose after a bit has helped them as well.

Might help. Try it.

my 2 cents~jg
Tmax1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-06, 09:31 AM   #3
ignominious
pointless & uncalled for
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: TOONCA
Bikes:
Posts: 378
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1ply
The past two rides I've been getting some severe cramps in the calves 1/2 hour into my ride.
Unless you are indulging in severe pedal mashes from cold then I would actually very strongly recommend seeing either a doctor or a sports physician. This sounds like an odd condition, particularly of you are in good shape, and could have a number of causes.
ignominious is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-06, 10:12 AM   #4
DannoXYZ 
Senior Member
 
DannoXYZ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Saratoga, CA
Bikes:
Posts: 11,606
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Too high a seat may have your calves fully contracted all the time in order to point the toes down. Will result in cramping. But could be pedaling motion as well.

Most likely, yeah, sounds like he's mashing big gears to me. Shift two gears lower and the cramping will go away. If it was a longer time, like 2-3 hours into the ride, I'd say it was lack of electrolytes. The solution would be using energy-drinks with electrolytes and possibly adding some supplemental electrolytes.
DannoXYZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-06, 10:49 AM   #5
AndrewP
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Montreal
Bikes: Peugeot Hybrid, Minelli Hybrid
Posts: 6,521
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Drink before the ride, and when you start riding, ride easy in lower gears for 10 mins. Add pinch of salt and a pinch of 'No-Salt' to your water bottles.
AndrewP is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-06, 10:51 AM   #6
1ply
Plays in Traffic
Thread Starter
 
1ply's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Kitchener, Ontario
Bikes:
Posts: 484
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by DannoXYZ
Too high a seat may have your calves fully contracted all the time in order to point the toes down. Will result in cramping. But could be pedaling motion as well.

Most likely, yeah, sounds like he's mashing big gears to me. Shift two gears lower and the cramping will go away. If it was a longer time, like 2-3 hours into the ride, I'd say it was lack of electrolytes. The solution would be using energy-drinks with electrolytes and possibly adding some supplemental electrolytes.
Sounds like I should take it easy the first little bit and let the muscles warm up. When I think about it, I take it easy down my driveway (3 seconds) and it 25-30kph from there on... point taken.

Is there some warmup (not on a bike) or stretching that I should do before a 1-1.5hr ride?
1ply is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-06, 11:18 AM   #7
supcom
You need a new bike
 
supcom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Bikes:
Posts: 5,433
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
It's not an electrolyte or vitamin problem. Electrolytes are not going to be depleted after one-half hour.

How long have you been cycling? I suspect that you are simply overdoing it on your rides. Perhaps you are going too hard for your fitness level? Maybe you should slow down a bit and work on increasing the amount of time on each ride as opposed to increasing distance.
supcom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-06, 11:39 AM   #8
Mach42
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Salt Lake City, UT
Bikes: 2005 Scattante R660 Triple, 2006 Specialized Rockhopper Comp Disc
Posts: 643
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
You want to check your cleat positioning too. I was having bad calf cramps after an hour of riding. I looked at my cleats and they were set nearly full forward. Your calves need to work overtime when they're set like that. I put them back 1cm and lowered my seat as well to avoid the toes down pedalling.

No cramps since.
Mach42 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-06, 12:10 PM   #9
1ply
Plays in Traffic
Thread Starter
 
1ply's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Kitchener, Ontario
Bikes:
Posts: 484
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mach42
You want to check your cleat positioning too. I was having bad calf cramps after an hour of riding. I looked at my cleats and they were set nearly full forward. Your calves need to work overtime when they're set like that. I put them back 1cm and lowered my seat as well to avoid the toes down pedalling.

No cramps since.

Good point, I will try that as mine are maybe 2mm from full forward now.

To answer the other questions, I am fit enough to handle a 1 hour ride (all I have time for right now) at an average speed of about 22km/h (14mph), and I could go longer but these cramps slow me down.

I'm moving the cleats before my ride tonight - and I guess I'll have to lower the seat 1/2" or so.
1ply is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-06, 02:43 PM   #10
Machka 
Long Distance Cyclist
 
Machka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: I ride where the thylacine roamed!
Bikes: Lots
Posts: 46,243
Mentioned: 19 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 336 Post(s)
Drink one 750 ml bottle of water and/or sports drink every 1 to 1.5 hours out there.

While you are riding consume foods with potassium and sodium such as bananas, dried apricots, salted almonds, and potato chips.
Machka is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-06, 03:00 PM   #11
Lolly Pop
Senior Member
 
Lolly Pop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Norn'Iron
Bikes: Gardin
Posts: 1,399
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Have you considered "intermittent claudication"?

Info from the British Heart Foundation
Lolly Pop is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-06, 04:01 PM   #12
1ply
Plays in Traffic
Thread Starter
 
1ply's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Kitchener, Ontario
Bikes:
Posts: 484
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lolly Pop
Have you considered "intermittent claudication"?

Info from the British Heart Foundation
I'd have to say no, as until about 1 week ago I've never had it happen. Even though I have ridden a mtn bike for about 1.5 hrs straight last year, followed by about 1 hour on the trails and 1.5 hours back.

^^ that's part of the reason I got a bike more suited to riding on the road, I hated taking the car to 'go biking'.
1ply is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-06, 04:13 PM   #13
Nightshade
Humvee of bikes =Worksman
 
Nightshade's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 5,363
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
99.999999% of the time you need to add some potassium to your diet.
Potassium is critical for blood flow and nerve health. Cramps are muscles
screaming for food (blood) or oxygen(blood again). Potassium helps the
body deliver the blood promptly.

That said ,add ONE tablet of 595mg Potassium Gluconate each morning with
breakfast to avoid this concnern. It will help or do no harm. Just give it a try
for a week or two to find out. Bannanas will help but not at quickly as a supplement
tablet will.
Nightshade is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-06, 07:27 PM   #14
1ply
Plays in Traffic
Thread Starter
 
1ply's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Kitchener, Ontario
Bikes:
Posts: 484
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
So I got back from a 10k ride earlier and after moving the cleats about .5cm back no pain!
1ply is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-06, 09:35 PM   #15
Nachoman
Senior Member
 
Nachoman's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Point Loma, CA
Bikes: Bill Holland (Road-Ti), Fuji Roubaix Pro (back-up), Bike Friday (folder), Co-Motion (tandem) & Trek 750 (hybrid)
Posts: 14,099
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 46 Post(s)
Excellent. I hope that solved your problem.
__________________
.
.

Two wheels good. Four wheels bad.
Nachoman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-06, 09:05 PM   #16
DRLski
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Derry, NH
Bikes:
Posts: 1,608
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'm sorry, I need to bring this topic back up, I'm having the same issue but it's during high intensities, and it's only in one leg, I've been riding for several years with the same cleat position and setup however it only recently started to cramp up on me, particularly during intervals or races. I have been getting all the nutrients into my system that I need. I was recommended to actually go to a massage therapist and have them do a deep tissue massage, does that normally help at all?
DRLski is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-12-06, 04:40 AM   #17
DRLski
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Derry, NH
Bikes:
Posts: 1,608
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
....
DRLski is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:40 AM.