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  1. #1
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    poor performance yesterday, need some advice

    Quick background:
    I was riding about 175mi a week when some serious pain in my right knee prompted me to visit an orthopedic doctor. He said I had IT band syndrome, sent me to a physical therapist. The therapist had me stop riding for 4 weeks and put me on a three time a day stretching/foam roll routine with some other exercises twice a week visiting the office to help with core strengthening/balance etc.

    Helping myself:
    The therapist had me do a test ride to see if all the increased flexibility and foam rolling had helped. Like clock work 1 hour into my ride, knee pain. I knew the next step was back to the doctor for an MRI so I took a step of my own and scheduled a bike fit at Bike Barn's Custom Fit Studio in Houston. Short Video I did a test ride that same evening (4/13) of 25 miles, and another one the next day (4/14) of 45 miles. The bike fit wasn't cheap and I needed a new handlebar stem, seat and shoes but I was cured! Not only was the knee pain gone, but I picked up some speed with the increased efficiency, and felt much better on the bike.

    More miles:
    That same weekend I participated in the MS150 from Houston to Austin. I rode 100 miles on Saturday (4/17), and about 80 miles on Sunday (4/18). I drank Hammerstrength Recoverite after both rides, and on Monday (4/20) I did a slow and easy 30 minute recovery ride.

    Yesterday:
    I went to memorial picnic loops with a couple guys I rode the MS with to do some interval training. Rode 5 miles to the park, and did an easy 1 mile when I got there so I was nice and warmed up. First 1 mile interval I felt ok, but thought that my legs felt a bit "weakish". Recovered and went for another interval and things just felt ****ty. My legs felt like they had no power and were getting fatigued extremely fast. During the MS150 I felt extremely energetic and powered up hill after hill and felt fantastic. Yesterday at the loops I felt like I was running on empty.

    Prognosis/Advice:
    I am still new to cycling, I have only been riding since September and had a good amount of disruption during November and December. I have about 2200 miles in the saddle so far. I really thought I would be recovered from last weekend and am trying to figure out what it wrong.

    1. I took a four week break, and then rode 250 miles in one week. Is it possible I need more recovery time?
    2. By my standards my diet this week has been great, loots of vegetables, fruit and complex carbs. Meat wise I had some salmon on Monday and some chick breast on Wednesday. Am I eating wrong? I try minimizing the meat I eat for health reasons, but make sure to get protein from other sources.
    3. Sleep/Rest... I slept 11 hours Sunday night and took Monday off of work. I know I haven't been sleeping enough this week, only about 5-6 hours a night. Could that be the issue?

    Anyway...sorry for the long rambling post, I tried to be concise I swear. My poor performance is bugging me and I am trying to figure out what I did wrong.

    As I said I am new to cycling and I really don't know best practices yet, I am still learning my body and learning about training and recovery etc.. I am looking for the advice/opinion of some more seasoned cyclists.

  2. #2
    pedo viejo
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    Any possibility it's a cleat fit issue? I used to have IT band issues when I ran, but on the bike the only time I've had knee pain was when my cleats were out of adjustment.

    I have to say that 250 miles your first week back sounds like too much. If it were me, I'd start with ~100 miles my first week to see how things felt, then ramp up. But then, I'm a cautious old fart.
    The trite subjects of human efforts---possessions, outward success, luxury---have always seemed to me contemptible. - Albert Einstein

  3. #3
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    A bad day? Everyone gets them, you can't expect to have great performance on every ride. You could have been tired, could have not eaten enough, eaten something that didn't agree with you or maybe your electrolyte levels/hydration wasn't sufficient. Could be any number of things. What did you eat/drink in the 24hrs before and prior to the ride? Lack of sleep wouldn't have helped.
    Elite XC turned Cat1 Road Cyclist

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  4. #4
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    The knee problem was fixed with the fit.

  5. #5
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    I think you probably just overdid it a bit after a 1 month layoff.

  6. #6
    pedo viejo
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    Quote Originally Posted by greatnate View Post
    The knee problem was fixed with the fit.
    Argh -- didn't read your whole post. (I'll blame you for writing such a long one. )
    Glad to hear the fit solved your knee problem.

    Yeah, you'll have bad days every now and then. Be sure you're not overtraining -- 180 miles in 2 days may require more than one day to recover. If I do a century on Sunday, I don't plan to do intervals again until Wednesday or Thursday.
    The trite subjects of human efforts---possessions, outward success, luxury---have always seemed to me contemptible. - Albert Einstein

  7. #7
    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    No kidding you need some more recovery time. Lack of sleep doesn't help, and can also be a symptom of needing recovery. One simple thing you can do to learn about your body is to buy a heart rate monitor. Lower than usual heart rate during hard exercise is a symptom of needing more recovery. As is an increased morning resting heart rate.

    I'm sure your diet is fine. Ride easy for a week and then test with intervals again.

  8. #8
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    @paulclaude
    The day before..
    Breakfast: Banana, Large bowl of fruit
    Lunch: Veggie Wrap and Banana
    Snacks: Apple, Orange
    Dinner: Avacado Sandwiches

    The day of:
    Breakfast: Dried fruits, Oats, Banana, Soy Milk
    Lunch: Vegetarian chinese food. Vegetabes, brown rice, noodles.
    Gu Pack: Right before the ride and one during.

    @Carbonfiberboy
    I was sturggling with my heart rate percentage in the mid 80s to low 90s. I usually feel good in that zone, and as you suggest that would indicate im not fully recovered.

    I am putting a lot of thought into this because I was annoyed but honestly, Occam's Razor would suggest the most simple answer is just that I am fatigued, havent fully recoevered and should take it wasy this weekend as opposed to hammering about. I have another century ride coming up on the first of May, I'll just plan on taking it easy until then.

  9. #9
    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    Totally normal. Do some intervals next Wednesday, but not all the way to exhaustion. I like a few 1.5-2 minute speed intervals. Makes you feel good for the 1st.

  10. #10
    Banned. $ick3nin.vend3t's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by greatnate View Post
    1. I took a four week break, and then rode 250 miles in one week. Is it possible I need more recovery time?
    An early grave beckons.

  11. #11
    Don't Believe the Hype RiPHRaPH's Avatar
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    i'm guessing saddle height and fore/aft issues.
    Fix it and don't look back.

    Don 't try to set a new PR on every ride.
    Don't ride the same speed with every ride.

    Chances are, you are not riding slow enough on what should be your slow days and not fast enough on your fast days.

    Don't overthink this.
    I have enough words to get me into trouble, but not enough to get me out of trouble.

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