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  1. #1
    Riding the bike I love. sstang13's Avatar
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    Why does this happen to me?

    I did my first century last week. It was exactly 155km so maybe you could say I havn't done one yet but it was with my dad. We completed it in 6hrs 30min of riding. Total of about 7 hours for rest stops and bathroom breaks. 5 stops. It was great because my shoulders never gave out as they usually do after 70km and we had no problems with the bike (chain drop, flat tire etc..) but my cyclometer did break from some crazy rain storm but then I dried it and fixed it after.

    Anyway, my question here is, why after century/ metric century rides, even successful ones like this, do I lose some love for riding!? I havnt rode in 8 days! I was going to yesterday but there was a storm, and now I don't even want to today! My dream is to ride in a professional race someday And I do love to ride! But after rides like this, I get these verrrryyy long periods of not wanting to ride. Please help!

  2. #2
    7-speed doomsday prepper ThermionicScott's Avatar
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    96 miles and change is pretty close in my book.

    Maybe you just have a longer refractory period when it comes to cycling.
    Quote Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
    There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
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  3. #3
    Riding the bike I love. sstang13's Avatar
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    Are you saying that I take longer to recover after long rides? I sleep like all day after the ride, and am tired sometimes anywhere from like 2-6 days. But I don't see how this makes me not want to ride anymore.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Chris Pringle's Avatar
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    It is normal to take periods of just pure rest, especially after some long event. A week or so it's OK for some people. You don't want to get burned out! From what I've read top racers do take several months off the bike in the off-season. During this time, they may practice other sports (cross-training.)

    Other suggestions:
    * Sounds like you normally ride solo. So, find buddies to ride with or join a club of some sort.
    * Mix it in! Why not try mountain biking if you don't feel like hitting the road? You'll hone down a different set of skills while still training the same muscles. Plus, getting in touch with nature can be reviving.
    * If you absolutely don't feel like riding at all (especially after a major race or century ride), hit the gym or go running or swimming. Again, you just need to keep active as part of your overall training especially in the on-season.
    * In the racing season (which might be short in Canada), you just need to sign up for several events to keep the tempo and pressure on your training.
    * Don't train every time like if it was a century. Some days can be short and sweet (recovery), other days can be interval training, other days hills, etc.
    * Do rest your body completely one or two days during the week. During this time, download and read some books/magazine from Amazon to keep you motivated with your training or watch bike race videos (TdF, etc.) There's tons of resources online, too. On the off-days, get together with like-minded people even for coffee/beer to discuss recent or upcoming events, bicycle components, share best practices or anything else to keep the "excitement" going.

    Good luck!
    Last edited by Chris Pringle; 08-14-12 at 04:06 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sstang13 View Post
    I did my first century last week. It was exactly 155km so maybe you could say I havn't done one yet but it was with my dad. We completed it in 6hrs 30min of riding. Total of about 7 hours for rest stops and bathroom breaks. 5 stops. It was great because my shoulders never gave out as they usually do after 70km and we had no problems with the bike (chain drop, flat tire etc..) but my cyclometer did break from some crazy rain storm but then I dried it and fixed it after.

    Anyway, my question here is, why after century/ metric century rides, even successful ones like this, do I lose some love for riding!? I havnt rode in 8 days! I was going to yesterday but there was a storm, and now I don't even want to today! My dream is to ride in a professional race someday And I do love to ride! But after rides like this, I get these verrrryyy long periods of not wanting to ride. Please help!
    I'd venture to guess you don't really want to ride then. Because if you did, then you would have gone for a 20 mile spin the next day. Stop dreaming and start doing.

  6. #6
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    In the past, I have suffered from mild dysphoria after long rides. I have to say that this doesn't include centuries though. First time I noticed it was after a ride of over 250 miles, and then I noticed it after my first 600k brevet. It wouldn't surprise me that it happens to people after centuries, and I don't know what causes it. I'm glad to say that it hasn't happened to me recently. I have heard of this happening to other randos after long rides.

  7. #7
    Riding the bike I love. sstang13's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Pringle View Post
    It is normal to take periods of just pure rest, especially after some long event. A week or so it's OK for some people. You don't want to get burned out! From what I've read top racers do take several months off the bike in the off-season. During this time, they may practice other sports (cross-training.)

    Other suggestions:
    * Sounds like you normally ride solo. So, find buddies to ride with or join a club of some sort.
    I ride with my dad almost all of the time in the evening because he loves to ride. But he slows me down a lot so I go during the day (I'm 16 yo and am off school until September 4th) to keep up good intense training rides, It works out nicely because I can enjoy almost a recovery ride 4-6 hours after my "day-time" rides. I also am part of a club and try to go every thursday, sometimes wednesday if neccessary. I am also going to give a club located near me a call sometime this week to ask if I can become a part of them, they train and race seriously.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Pringle View Post
    * Mix it in! Why not try mountain biking if you don't feel like hitting the road? You'll hone down a different set of skills while still training the same muscles. Plus, getting in touch with nature can be reviving.
    Funny you say that, I've really been loving mountain biking during the past couple months. I have a trail just down my street and love to go. I did not realize that it was very good for training, I thought the best thing was to ride on the road. Maybe this will be the turning point.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Pringle View Post
    * If you absolutely don't feel like riding at all (especially after a major race or century ride), hit the gym or go running or swimming. Again, you just need to keep active as part of your overall training especially in the on-season.
    I worked out yesterday because of the storm because I needed to get my legs going again! I will definitely consider running, swimming might not be a choice, but running for sure.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Pringle View Post
    * In the racing season (which might be short in Canada), you just need to sign up for several events to keep the tempo and pressure on your training.
    I am looking very hard to join at least one race this year (September 8th) so for next year I'll know what to expect for the next season, and realize where/how to improve my riding/racing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Pringle View Post
    * Don't train every time like if it was a century. Some days can be short and sweet (recovery), other days can be interval training, other days hills, etc.
    I have two routes that I switch up every couple rides between hills, and a mainly flat, interval route.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Pringle View Post
    * Do rest your body completely one or two days during the week. During this time, download and read some books/magazine from Amazon to keep you motivated with your training or watch bike race videos (TdF, etc.) There's tons of resources online, too. On the off-days, get together with like-minded people even for coffee/beer to discuss recent or upcoming events, bicycle components, share best practices or anything else to keep the "excitement" going.
    I always make sure that I take at least 2 days off a week, and I always look for motivational (or not) cycling stuff. Here's one that my Slovakian friend, who's in Slovakia right now, got from Peter Sagan that motivates Peter: http://www.cyclingpowermodels.com/Pr...alCycling.aspx
    I talk with my Slovakian friend a lot about cycling, and when he gets back we are thinking about competing in races together.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Pringle View Post
    Good luck!
    Thanks a lot, this is really helpful!

  8. #8
    aspiring dirtbag commuter max-a-mill's Avatar
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    often times you just gotta go out even when your not feeling it.

    try this if you feel like crap but have a ride planned: go out anyway on the condition that if you still don't feel like riding after 1/2 an hour you'll turn around and go home. that is what i do... guess what, i never go home.

    in fact i often find my legs feel amazing after a while even when feeling like complete crap at the beginning of a ride (frequently on the second day following a previous days hard effort).

    i do like riding mountainbikes because there is so much more to concentrate on other than the monotony of sore legs pumping up and down.
    - the revolution will not be motorized -

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    Quote Originally Posted by max-a-mill View Post
    often times you just gotta go out even when your not feeling it.
    good point. I've been obsessing a little about my recovery since I have a big ride coming up. The other day at the start of my ride, my legs felt really dead going up the first hill. But as I warmed up, I felt great. Usually the first big effort will be a little harder after a long ride, but once you get into a ride it's just like any other ride. Force yourself to go out and ride, it gets better

  10. #10
    Riding the bike I love. sstang13's Avatar
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    That is a lot of the reason why I like mountain biking, where I live there is not too many routes that I can bike on and I've done every route I've been able to find, and even with a group, countless amount of times. They're very boring now and there is no excitment. But with mountain biking, you can go almost anywhere and I love the obstacles (ie. rockes, roots, sharp turnes) and you can hit them as hard as you want, instead of being on the road getting passed closely by cars and worrying about tiny rocks in your way. Nothing against road biking, I do just need a brake sometimes to keep it exciting and fun. I'll start racing next year, maybe this year if I can find one, and I'm sure that'll keep me motivated.
    I also do get 'forced' to ride a lot because my dad always wants to go, and in a year we've been riding I've only said no once, and they usually are pretty good, like last night when my legs were in a lot of pain because I'm a rookie when it comes to working out with weights, but went riding anyway.

  11. #11
    aspiring dirtbag commuter max-a-mill's Avatar
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    you know if you like the mtb better you can race those too? plenty of long races taking place on the dirt these days.

    i am a mountainbiker first and foremost. only got into the crazy long distance riding thing through commuting; which i only got into to make me faster on the mtb. didn't really work fully as i am still not really fast on the mtb, but man do i enjoy a good long day on some nice trails though.
    - the revolution will not be motorized -

  12. #12
    Uber Goober StephenH's Avatar
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    Was it really fun riding? Or were you killing time till you go there? Was it a social event? Or exercising?

    For me, riding with friendly people is 3/4 of the fun on a longer ride. I get along fine with my dad and with my kids, but don't know that I'd pick either for a long ride together, either. Anyway, I'd say give it some thought, figure out what would have made it more fun, and change accordingly. If you're not physically exhausted when you're done, then it's all a mental issue.
    "be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."

  13. #13
    Riding the bike I love. sstang13's Avatar
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    Ya I've realized that almost all of the mountain bike races in Ontario are like no more than an hour from me. Plus there a trail literally less than 1 minute away from me. They're not the best but definitely worth going on, when I start to ride more I'll be sure to did some more trails..or just make some of my own but ya my main focus is to road race.
    Great news, my dad just phoned a club today which I am going to join, and they will help me train and develop as a rider/racer. They're like a mini professional team. They take riding seriously, it is a full time job for the coach. I think this is what I always needed. I need a coach and a team for motivation. There was just a post today on the 41 explaining this.

    As for the ride up I did it for ejoyment only. And it was nice to get out and ride that far for the first time.

  14. #14
    Lover of Old Chrome Moly Myosmith's Avatar
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    I occasionally have periods of a day or three where I just don't feel like riding, usually after an unusual increase in training or sometimes after a big event like a century. I figure it's just my body's way of telling me I need time to recover. By the third day or so my enthusiasm returns and my quick 10 miles can turn into 30+ without even thinking about it.
    Lead, follow or get out of the way

  15. #15
    Riding the bike I love. sstang13's Avatar
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    I'm starting to think it's my sleep deprevation? Every night for as long as I could remember just this summer, I've only been able to fall asleep anywhere between 1-3 a.m. For the past week or so I've been trying to go to bed around 10-11 p.m but still I cannot go to sleep until at least 2 a.m. I'm waking up at like 9 falling back to sleep, then wake up at 10, than 11, and I could go all day but I don't want to waste my day doing nothing so I get up around 11-12. I hate trying to sleep at night.

  16. #16
    aspiring dirtbag commuter max-a-mill's Avatar
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    you don't wake up until 11 and wonder why you can't sleep till 3AM?

    8 hours is good regardless of when those 8 hours occur. i find it optimal to go to bed shortly after dark (if possible) and rise shortly after dawn. when i was your age though i am sure my schedule was much more like yours. it really only started to change with a fulltime job and trying to get up early on weeekends for group rides. i wouldn't skimp on sleep, other than training it is probably the best thing you can do to get faster.

    can't do better than a fulltime coach and a very supportive parent. just pay attention to the advice given and i am sure you'll be flying in no time!
    - the revolution will not be motorized -

  17. #17
    Riding the bike I love. sstang13's Avatar
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    I can only wake up at 11, now pushing 12, because of only being able to sleep at 3. Iv'e tried so many times to go to sleep anytime before 11 or even 12 p.m but it's literally impossible. I have school in a couple weeks, got to wake up at 7a.m, wish me luck!

    I would also like those 8 hours to earlier so I cant ride at 11.

    Also I am going to be part of a 'team' soon. I say 'team' because they have a team, but I still need to prove myself to be on it. For now (when I join) I will most likely be on a development program. And yes, my dad is supportive

  18. #18
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    I sometimes look back over my riding spreadsheet at the end of every month and wonder whether I've missed out on anything else, spending all those hours riding. Then I try to up the mileage for the current month...

    No riding this week. I decided to cross train with a bit of MTB and now I have to wait until the injuries subside...

  19. #19
    Senior Member chandltp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sstang13 View Post
    I can only wake up at 11, now pushing 12, because of only being able to sleep at 3. Iv'e tried so many times to go to sleep anytime before 11 or even 12 p.m but it's literally impossible. I have school in a couple weeks, got to wake up at 7a.m, wish me luck!
    So when you wake up at 7:00 AM are you able to fall asleep sooner? Or do you just get 4 hours of sleep a night for the entire school year?

    After a sleep deprived weekend, I found that I was pretty easily able to start transitioning my sleep schedule from 9:00 PM to 4:30 AM. I was staying up until 10:00 PM before and didn't get enough sleep to comfortably wake up at 4:30. I imagine in a week or two 9:00 won't seem early.
    There are 10 types of people, those that understand binary and those that don't.

  20. #20
    Riding the bike I love. sstang13's Avatar
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    Well it's only happened this bad recently, just this summer. So this will be my first time trying to get up so early after so little sleep.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Syscrush's Avatar
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    155 is a big accomplishment and you should be proud of it, but I don't think you should call it a century. If you wanted to say you rode a century, then you should have added 3 miles.

    As for the motivation: If you ride more, you'll love it more. Others have suggested this, and I agree. I've never raced or done crazy distance, but I've done 750km in 8 days, and despite the difficulty to get going some mornings, it just got better and better every day. Same for when I did 2 century rides in 2 days on my fixie. I was profoundly burned out, exhausted, and sore, but the next day I woke up just wanting to ride. For any endurance activity, you do it when you don't love it until you can't not love it.

    As for the sleeping: what's your caffeine intake like? One cup of coffee or a can of Coke will affect your body for almost 24 hours. People don't treat caffeine as the powerful drug that it is, and I expect some "pshaw" responses to this post. Limit your caffeine intake to 0-200mg per day, and never, ever after 10AM. See what happens. You'll probably find that you don't sleep any longer, but sleep earlier, easier, and more restfully.

    Also, lack of sleep doesn't have a huge impact on aerobic performance, at least at the training level, and certainly not at the recreational level. I don't care if you didn't sleep until 4AM, get up at 7, have one coffee and go ride 100 miles. You can do it. When you come home, have a couple of beers and you'll be ready for a nice relaxing sleep by the time the sun goes down. Don't try to drink yourself to sleep - it's not healthy and doesn't work. But it'll help you wind down a bit after 6-7 hours of hard cranking on the bike.

  22. #22
    Riding the bike I love. sstang13's Avatar
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    Ya I don't mind not having it a century because realistically its not.

    I'm starting to ride more and more now as I am probably joining an all year round team and am part of a club. The love is coming back.

    And for caffeine intake, I used to drink coffee like 3 times a week at 9 or 10 p.m ad I was able to sleep fine. I havn't had a cup for about 3-4 weeks now probably and I rarely drink coke. Maybe half a can or a full one sometimes once a month, not even.

    I woke up at 7 today, stayed awake, and so hopefully I can fall asleep earlier tonight and keep that routine going.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Syscrush's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sstang13 View Post
    Ya I don't mind not having it a century because realistically its not.
    I'm not trying to be a pedantic dick about that, but I probably am being one. You'll do your real century soon!

    I'm starting to ride more and more now as I am probably joining an all year round team and am part of a club. The love is coming back.
    That's how it works. If you do it enough, your body gets addicted to it, and you won't be able to stay off the bike.

    And for caffeine intake, I used to drink coffee like 3 times a week at 9 or 10 p.m ad I was able to sleep fine. I havn't had a cup for about 3-4 weeks now probably and I rarely drink coke. Maybe half a can or a full one sometimes once a month, not even.
    Every body is different, but I would suggest that if someone can drink coffee at 9 or 10 PM and fall asleep at a reasonable hour, they are probably sleep-deprived.

    I woke up at 7 today, stayed awake, and so hopefully I can fall asleep earlier tonight and keep that routine going.
    If you keep getting up early, no matter how you feel about it, eventually you WILL definitely start falling asleep early. It's a bit harder for someone your age, though - your body and brain are still developing in a way that means your sleep patterns will tend to be a bit harder to manage than for most of the folks on here who are at least a bit older.

    Do you get any natural light in your bedroom? If you can arrange things so that sunlight hits your face in the morning, you'll probably find it a lot easier to get up, aka a lot harder to sleep in.

  24. #24
    Riding the bike I love. sstang13's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Syscrush View Post
    I'm not trying to be a pedantic dick about that, but I probably am being one. You'll do your real century soon!
    No you're not, I even gave you permission - "It was exactly 155km so maybe you could say I havn't done one yet "

    Quote Originally Posted by Syscrush View Post
    That's how it works. If you do it enough, your body gets addicted to it, and you won't be able to stay off the bike.
    Can't wait for the day, I don't think it's come yet..

    Quote Originally Posted by Syscrush View Post
    Every body is different, but I would suggest that if someone can drink coffee at 9 or 10 PM and fall asleep at a reasonable hour, they are probably sleep-deprived.
    Wierd because I was tired in the mornings, but that's normal, but through the day I was fine, happy, and energetic! Now I'm tired all the time! Plus I ate my coffee with cookies, possibly thee greatest late night snack!

    Quote Originally Posted by Syscrush View Post
    If you keep getting up early, no matter how you feel about it, eventually you WILL definitely start falling asleep early. It's a bit harder for someone your age, though - your body and brain are still developing in a way that means your sleep patterns will tend to be a bit harder to manage than for most of the folks on here who are at least a bit older.
    Well ya, as of September 4th, I'll be back to waking up at 7-7:30 AM 5 days a week. Plus I got classes in school such as: Chemistry, biology, physics, math, and english that are all academic. And in grade 11 which is apparently the hardest year. So I pray that I will get some sleep by then. Aslo, I have personal fitness, which is basically go workout by yourself. Do you have any recommendations for weight training to get better at cycling?? I'd appreciate that


    Quote Originally Posted by Syscrush View Post
    Do you get any natural light in your bedroom? If you can arrange things so that sunlight hits your face in the morning, you'll probably find it a lot easier to get up, aka a lot harder to sleep in.
    That's actually the very reason I woke up this morning. My blinds were moved a bit because my window was open, and the sun was hitting my face right on. I got up to close them, but as soon as I stood up, I was unable to fall asleep atm. Got sleepy an hour later but decided to stay awake.
    Last edited by sstang13; 08-24-12 at 03:35 PM. Reason: I pressed tab and it posted my post which wasn't finished.

  25. #25
    Dharma Dog lhbernhardt's Avatar
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    Getting to the point in cycling where you "ride for a professional team" is so hard that you really have to be passionate about it,

    Having a passion for something means that you didn't choose to do the thing you're passionate about, it chose you.

    If you don't feel like riding, then you should definitely be doing something else. I can see not feeling like riding when you are in mile 155 of a 200-mile ride, but the next day, I always feel guilty if I'm off the bike resting, and I can't go two full days without riding! I just wouldn't feel right.

    That said, if you're going thru a low period where you're just too depressed or whatever to ride, a good way to trick yourself into riding is to put some upgrade on your bike. Slip on the race wheels or something and go test them!

    Luis

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