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  1. #1
    Lost in Nostalgia
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    Aching Quads and stretching

    Whenever I put in a fair ride, say 70 miles and up, on the returning trip, my quads starts to develop a deep down aching and quite painful, it has always done this the past several rides of this length.

    So on the last ride, thought I'd try something. I stopped to stretch the quads a good 6-7 minutes each leg and I was amazed to find the aching went away completely for the rest of the ride.

    What do you suppose the stretching did and what do you think caused the aching?

    Thanks..knotty

  2. #2
    Road Runner PDay's Avatar
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    Do you stretch beforehand?

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    Lost in Nostalgia
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    No, I've been very lax in stretching but since the last ride incident, I've begun.

    knotty

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    Senior Member Chaco's Avatar
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    On any ride over 50 miles, I down a couple of Advils. It does wonders for aching quads.

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    Quote Originally Posted by knotty View Post
    Whenever I put in a fair ride, say 70 miles and up, on the returning trip, my quads starts to develop a deep down aching and quite painful, it has always done this the past several rides of this length.

    So on the last ride, thought I'd try something. I stopped to stretch the quads a good 6-7 minutes each leg and I was amazed to find the aching went away completely for the rest of the ride.

    What do you suppose the stretching did and what do you think caused the aching?

    Thanks..knotty
    Stretching helps stretch the fibers, which is good. The time off the bike may help you as well.

    You might want to try a hydration drink with protein and perhaps use an easier gear.
    Eric

    2005 Trek 5.2 Madone, Red with Yellow Flames (Beauty)
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  6. #6
    Lost in Nostalgia
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    Thanks all, and ericqu, I'll go investigate different drinks, I've been on Gatorade, perhaps thats not too good.

    knotty

  7. #7
    negligent. slynkie's Avatar
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    stretching after a ride improves my recovery time immensely. for 70+ mile rides, i do a few quick stretches (takes 1 minute) every 25-30 miles.

    this book has sets of stretches for everything imaginable -
    http://www.amazon.com/Whartons-Stret.../dp/0812926234

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    Lost in Nostalgia
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    slynkie: thanks, I'll do just that, stop and stretch along the way. I'm excited to try it out on the next long ride.

    Yes, previously, I just rode and rode without a let up, just a few minutes to eat something and off again.

    knotty

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    negligent. slynkie's Avatar
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    good luck! report back

  10. #10
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    If Gatorade's all you're drinking, you're definitely not getting enough glucose and electrolytes. Well, you can if you mix it at 2x concentration and drink 750ml of that per hour.

    Part of the aching could be from cramping due to lack of electrolytes. Are you sore after the ride? If not, then it could be lack of electrolytes and maybe even dehydration.

    If you are sore after the ride for a day or more, then it's overstraining the muscle. A 70-mile ride should be done at an endurance intensity. You shouldn't even be pushing the muscles hard enough to the point where they cramp or get fatigued (that's for interval workouts). So take it easy on the muscles by using easier gears. Be aware of the evenness of your pedal-strokes. Don't be pushing down at the bottom of the stroke, that just tries to stretch the crank. You really want to be pulling directly back when the crank's at the bottom Actually, you always want to be applying force at 90-degrees to the crank.

    What happens with a lot of people is they 'rest' their upstroke leg on the pedals. This requires extra force from the opposite leg; not only does it have to apply force to move the bike and y ou forward, it has to apply ADDITIONAL force to push the other leg up. This ends up requiring more muscle-effort than necessary for the speed you're riding and can lead to quicker fatigue and cramping.
    Last edited by DannoXYZ; 11-07-07 at 05:21 PM.

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    Senior Member Terex's Avatar
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    Hey Danno - any recommendations on drinks? The ones with significant electrolyte replacement are pretty pricey.

    Also, I did my first weight workout tonight. Thanks for all the info you've posted previously. It's going to take me some weeks to get things sorted, but already I've identified leg extensions as an area where I really need work. I kept reducing weight until I could really get full extension, and I ended up at 30 lbs....
    "It could be anything. Scrap booking, high-stakes poker, or the Santa Fe lifestyle. Just pick a dead-end and chill out 'till you die."

  12. #12
    Lost in Nostalgia
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    DannoXYZ
    > Thanks for the tips, yes, Gatorate is all I've been drinking.
    > Not sore after the ride at all, the aching goes away soon after the ride is over.
    > I am totally guilty of pushing too hard. When starting off nice and fresh, I can't resist the urge to jam hills and keeping up with faster cyclists.
    > Yes on the circular pedaling, I've been doing that for many years now.

    Luckily stretching periodically during the ride seems to take care of the aching and I'll also change sports drinks.

    knotty

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    Lost in Nostalgia
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    OK, been experimenting and I've found the problem with the aching quads. I'm ashamed to say, not enough fluids was the main culprit. I upped the fluid to twice my usual intake to 16-20 oz. per hour and it made a world of difference. No aching whatsoever, fast recovery and just a overall, great fresh feeling even after 70 miles, simply amazing. And this was riding about twice my past intensity, jamming hills and flats along the way.

    I didn't even eat much during the ride, perhaps 200-250 cals per hour and occasionally stretched.

    My only complaint is the bitter after taste of Gatorade. I really have to change drinks.

    I should have added, about 2-3 hours before the ride, I drank about 20+ oz. of water and peed that out.

    Thanks all for great tips.

    knotty
    Last edited by knotty; 11-14-07 at 05:06 PM.

  14. #14
    Raptor Custom Bicycles ZXiMan's Avatar
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    Yes, I can't stress proper hydration more. Drink more water during the day. In fact, I make it a point to drink 10-12 ounces of water within 20 seconds of rising out of bed in the morning. It makes a HUGE difference.

  15. #15
    Lost in Nostalgia
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    Thanks ZXiMan, yes, I've been drinking 2x-3x the water I used to and haven't had the aching quads since. I have to make a conscious effort to drink enough water though. Drinking water upon rising makes a noticeable difference during the ride so that's a rule now.

    knotty

  16. #16
    Senior Member BigSean's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by knotty View Post
    OK, been experimenting and I've found the problem with the aching quads. I'm ashamed to say, not enough fluids was the main culprit. I upped the fluid to twice my usual intake to 16-20 oz. per hour and it made a world of difference. No aching whatsoever, fast recovery and just a overall, great fresh feeling even after 70 miles, simply amazing. And this was riding about twice my past intensity, jamming hills and flats along the way.

    I didn't even eat much during the ride, perhaps 200-250 cals per hour and occasionally stretched.

    My only complaint is the bitter after taste of Gatorade. I really have to change drinks.

    I should have added, about 2-3 hours before the ride, I drank about 20+ oz. of water and peed that out.

    Thanks all for great tips.

    knotty
    Try Heed by Hammer Nutrition.

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