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Strange cycling habits.........

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Strange cycling habits.........

Old 06-02-12, 12:02 AM
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Mondo734
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Strange cycling habits.........

The past few rides I have done I noticed I have been getting strange looks from other cyclists and other random people passing by. Here is what is going on, I usually ride 3-5 miles and then take a break. During my break I like to take about 10-20 minutes and really stretch. While stretching I get funny looks from other people. My question is it really strange to stretch while taking a break from a bike ride? Do you all stretch? What are the strange habits you all have that people think your strange for?
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Old 06-02-12, 12:10 AM
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Usually we stretch before we begin to cycle, or do anything type of exercise...

Of course, there's no law against stretching anytime that you want. Perhaps, it was the particular manner in which you stretched...


PS.

I once saw a really tall guy stretch before a Tae Kwon Do match. It just happens that he was double jointed. He placed his legs over his shoulders and behind his neck. He looked so weird doing that! Everybody just gawked and stared at him...

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Old 06-02-12, 12:15 AM
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hmmm....Yea for most forms of exercise I stretch ahead of time but for cycling I feel like it helps more when I stretch after I have warmed up a bit. As for the manner in which I stretch most of the stretches I do come from Muy Thai and a few yoga-esque stretches. Nothing that seems overly unusual, to me anyway.
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Old 06-02-12, 12:25 AM
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Turns out there is very little empirical evidence showing that stretching prior to or during cycling or many other activities is in any way beneficial. http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/0...ot-to-stretch/.

The people giving you funny looks know this.

After learning this I took up running again and wish I'd known what bunk stretching was all along. I love running so long as it needn't be preceded by 5 minutes of stretching on the floor.

But really, I wouldn't ever bother to take note of what you describe. I see way weirder stuff going on than people just stretching.
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Old 06-02-12, 12:31 AM
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Actually, it's probably best to stretch after the ride, when the muscles are all warmed up, rather than before.

And I suspect that most cyclists simply don't stretch.

I will do some off-the-bicycle stretching about every hour on long rides, especially if we're riding the tandem, because it feels great to move and change positions. Otherwise I'll stretch now and then while I'm riding. And if the ride is under 2 hours or so, I don't do much stretching at all.


As for this question: "What are the strange habits you all have that people think your strange for?" ... The answer is, pretty much most of the cycling I do. Most of my coworkers etc. think that riding any longer than about 10 km is strange.
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Old 06-02-12, 12:36 AM
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As the article said static stretching for long periods of time is bad but typically my stretching doesn't fall into that category. I also find it strange that blood flow was not addressed in the article at all. This is partly why I stretch after 5 miles or so because my heart rate is up and stretching seems to help the blood circulate through the muscles better that way. Now that of course is just my personal observation from my own exercising experiences.
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Old 06-02-12, 12:48 AM
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Exercise helps with blood flow ... if you sit and move your feet - point your toes, then bring your toes up toward you (which will give your calf a bit of a stretch), and repeat over and over, you're pumping the blood back up toward your heart.

Walking is also really good to help with blood flow.

Stretching puts your muscles into a different position than what you've been in for the last hour.

After an hour on the tandem, for example, I like to get off, walk up and down a little bit, and then lean forward and wrap my arms around my knees to stretch my lower back, glutes, and hamstrings a bit because they tend to get sore sitting in one position on the tandem for any length of time.
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Old 06-02-12, 12:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Mondo734 View Post
As the article said static stretching for long periods of time is bad but typically my stretching doesn't fall into that category
Not proven to be harmful, but still not proven to be beneficial either.

Originally Posted by Mondo734 View Post
... stretching seems to help the blood circulate through the muscles better that way. Now that of course is just my personal observation from my own exercising experiences.
Not meaning at all to give you hard time about it. But I personally have no physical sense of when blood is circulate through my muscles better or worse. You very well may be more in tune to that sort of thing.

Rather, I was just dying for an excuse to can the whole stretching before exercise routine, and the Well blog came through!

As for my own strange habits (confined to cycling), top of the list is probably commuting home between the hours of 1-3AM. Others: "But it's dark out". Yeah, thanks.
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Old 06-02-12, 01:01 AM
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Yea I dont know if I could do the whole cycling at night thing, I think I would be super on edge watching for every little movement.
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Old 06-02-12, 01:56 AM
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I move my neck around, swing my arms around. shake my feet around, to get the blood flowing and eliminate numbness. Do people stare cause of that? Dont know, dont really care. People will look at me just cause i'm decked out and on a nice road bike.
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Old 06-02-12, 02:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
As for this question: "What are the strange habits you all have that people think your strange for?" ... The answer is, pretty much most of the cycling I do. Most of my coworkers etc. think that riding any longer than about 10 km is strange.
Most people I know think I'm crazy for cycling to a town 30-odd miles away when I could take the car. They can't understand riding 100km or more for fun. I can only imagine what they'd make of a real long distance cyclist.
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