Hi guys, my tracks race night works on
10-15min open track for warm up
During the warmup, I don't go out too quick, I start out very steady yet I feel really bad cramps in my glutes and hamstrings. Is this due to flexibility? Mine absolutely sucks, I can touch about halfway down my shin before I start to break a sweat!
Or, could it be because I don't put a 'warmup' gear on? I warmup at a lower cadence and just leave the race/sprint chainring/cog on.
During the first event (if it's a long one) I'll start to feel good and then feel like I can contend for placement, so the 'issue' does resolve itself with more time. Do I just need to warmup for longer? (And therefore take my own rollers/turbo).
Thanks for the input!
Thats quite a short warm up. Although these things are quite individual, what works for some doesnt work for others.
I do about 20 minutes on the track (motorpaced) then after that come off and get on the rollers just to spin the legs and keep things moving but with a few high cadence efforts mixed in too - i do this up to the racers are called to line up. Where i race first is usually a 10 lap scratch so you've got to be good to go from the gun and that generally means rolling to the start already dripping in sweat!
I dont do any stretching beforehand, but do lots afterwards.
What is your gear you use for warmup? How old are you? If you are over 30 and are using something over an 88" gear, I would probably attribute this to your choice of gearing. There might be a bike fit component to it as well.
The only gear I take to the track is a 48-15 or a 86 gear inch. I'm a Youth rider so am supposed to be limited to a 48-16 (under British Cycling), although I fail the roll-out every week, the organisers say that it's okay.
(Side note - the gear isn't holding me back in events, so it isn't big for me personally after I'm warmed up)
Thanks for the input, I'll start doing longer warm-ups and get myself a smaller chainring.
Would stretching (as in during the week, rather than part as my warm-up) help this? I'm often told how 'aggressive' my saddle to bar drop is, but I warm up on the tops or hold where the hoods would be...
Stretching during the week (best to do it after riding, when your muscles are warmed up) is a VERY GOOD idea. if you are a Youth rider and can't touch your toes, you are very (surprisingly so) unflexible - you are setting yourself up for injury, forget the cramps.
Originally Posted by Lew.
But yes, although its not the only factor, or a conclusive factor, when it comes to cramping, muscles that are tight to start off with are instantly pre-disposed to cramping. its all got to do with how muscles work on the cellular level (which i won't go into here).
Especially for cycling, where you are using your muscles in a 'shortened' position as well (unlike running, which lengthens the muscles out).
I'd say the stretching thing is more of an issue than the warm up, since you roll the gear slowly to start off with, but there is a bit of a combined factor if your tight muscles start 'tightening' more to get the big gear going before they are properly warmed up, so definitely get a lighter gear and take it slower before you are at top speed/ power part of your warm up.