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Recreational Cyclocross and Gravelbiking This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like :The Dirty Kanza". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

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Old 09-18-07, 06:40 PM   #1
MarkWW
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muscle warmers

Who here uses muscle warmers (greyhound juice, sportsbalm, etc.)? What brand do you use, and do you like it? I'm thinking about trying them out this season and want some reviews.
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Old 09-18-07, 08:39 PM   #2
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I was under the impression that muscle warmers just make you feel warmer, and have no physiological benefit - you'd be faster with some leg warmers.
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Old 09-18-07, 08:58 PM   #3
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I was under the impression that muscle warmers just make you feel warmer, and have no physiological benefit - you'd be faster with some leg warmers.
Your impression is wrong... embros work wonders. All european pros use embro creams to keep their legs warm and sealed from the wind. Cross races do it in the winter and roadies do it in the spring classics. Legwarmers are a terrible idea in a cross race. They just get soaked and loaded with water. Unless you like carrying around 5 lbs of extra water weight... look at other options.

I personally like the greyhound juice. I will also put a layer of white petro jelly over that if it is really wet and cold, as it seals your skin pretty well.
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Old 09-18-07, 09:39 PM   #4
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Do you know how they work? Obviously they do not chemically react and produce actual heat. I belive are they irritating the skin and blood is brought out to the surface, like a sunburn. If that's the case, that doesn't help your muscle at all, since you are both lowering your blood temp (think radiator) and drawing blood away from your muscles. Isn't all your blood already where it should be?
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Old 09-19-07, 01:36 PM   #5
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Do you know how they work? Obviously they do not chemically react and produce actual heat. I belive are they irritating the skin and blood is brought out to the surface, like a sunburn. If that's the case, that doesn't help your muscle at all, since you are both lowering your blood temp (think radiator) and drawing blood away from your muscles. Isn't all your blood already where it should be?
After some googling, it appears that it is not fully understood how warming liniments work. But they do dilate blood vessels, counteracting the body's natural reaction to cold. So you would not want to use liniment as a way of staying warm in, say, a wilderness survival situation. In a race or training situation, however, it seems reasonable (to me) that the dilation would help keep leg muscles functioning well.
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Old 09-19-07, 02:24 PM   #6
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After some googling, it appears that it is not fully understood how warming liniments work. But they do dilate blood vessels, counteracting the body's natural reaction to cold. So you would not want to use liniment as a way of staying warm in, say, a wilderness survival situation. In a race or training situation, however, it seems reasonable (to me) that the dilation would help keep leg muscles functioning well.
Exactly, they just promote blood flow and help fight the natural inclination to close off vesseles in teh extremities. Fw keeping your muscles ready to go they are great. Obviously they aren't for actually producing "heat" and would be a dumb choice in a survival situation.... but of course we're talking about bike racing here

I do know that after using the extra strength greyhound juice you better wait a good while before jumping in a hot shower! OUCH feels like someone put a blowtourch onto your skin. The stuff def makes your skin very sensitive to extrna heat sources.
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