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Old 07-01-04, 10:17 PM   #1
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First off, I have taken my cycling to another level this year. The past few Summers I would average around 30 miles a day or so + the occasional longer rides on weekends. So far this Summer I am doing at least 50 miles a day & normally 60-75 on weekends. I feel like I have only gotten stronger with every ride. We also have FINALLY had some nice weather here, so it has been hard for me NOT to always be on my bike.I built a new bike over the Winter (De Rosa Dual) and decided for the time being NOT to mount a computer. I have actually enjoyed just riding for the sake of riding without having to always be a slave to my computer (mistake?).

Secondly, I always seem to be hammering. I admit that the idea of days off & recovery rides seemed like something that applied to everybody else & not to me. I have trusted my body to tell me when it needs to rest & it just hasn't been doing anything but screaming "faster,faster!". I haven't ever used a heart-rate monitor, but I did buy one tonight.I do however usually check my resting heart-rate in the morning. It's usually around 49-51. The last couple days it has been closer to 60.

My problem started earlier in the week when out of the blue, I just couldn't sleep. Heart seemed to be pounding & it just wasn't going to happen. I figured stress, work, jet-lag. It did occur to me that maybe I was over-training, but my performance had been tops. The next day I went riding & seemed to have all the energy in the world. Did around 40 miles & was just FLYING. my body would tell me if I was pushing it too hard,right? Well... didn't sleep again that night. Decided to try a "recovery ride" the next day. The single most torturous thing I have ever done, I swear. Body kept screaming that whole "faster,faster!" thing at me. I tried not to listen & I kept right on spinning. Did about 25 miles trying to keep my heart-rate down. Guesswork, as this was BEFORE I bought the HRM tonight. Still couldn't sleep last night. Did another "recovery ride" today, stopped & picked up the HRM. Boy, SLEEP sure would be nice tonight - we'll see....

So any advice? Thoughts? Am I over-training or could it actually be something else? Now that I have this HRM (Polar ,erm... $100 model) , I will be reading the little book & stuff, but anybody have any tips on the best way to make use of the thing? Holiday weekend & I have no plans. The bike is talking to me , I swear.

Any help, insight or lectures appreciated.

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Old 07-01-04, 10:29 PM   #2
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I guess if I wasn't sleeping at night, I would try some changes in my lifestyle, to see what variables might be causing me not to sleep. First thing I would change would be the obvious - my intensive and sort of compulsive biking activity.

Take a break! Lay off a few days. See what happens. The world won't come to an end if you take a biking break. If taking a break doesn't help, consider other factors.

Maybe your not sleeping is the exact way that your body is telling you to slow down a bit??

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Old 07-02-04, 07:02 AM   #3
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Take a day off from cycling and do soemthing else to relax.

See what happens
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Old 07-02-04, 07:50 AM   #4
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Any help, insight or lectures appreciated.

Just by reading your post, it is obvious that you have all sorts of anxiety going on. You need to sloooooooooooow doooooooooooown and smell the roses. Cycling should be a part of your life. It shouldn't be your life.

I have to admit that i have to fight myself to not ride. I think it is just human nature once you get "addicted" to something. HOwever, i am trying to keep it all in perspective. Cycling is a component to my day, it is not my whole day. I use the cycling time to think and ponder about the other components that occur when i am not on the bike.

Find a way to make cycling more relaxing and you will likely enjoy it more. Sure you want to go faster, faster, faster but is that necessarily better? I often say this to myself on the bike,
Don't destinate, just ride.
Think about it.
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Old 07-02-04, 08:29 AM   #5
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The symptoms you describe are the exact same that I experienced last season.
I was doing 350+ miles a week. One week I did two centuries back to back. I thought I was getting stronger, but by mid season guys that I used to drop on climbs, were dropping me.The other problem was burnout before the season ended.

This year I have forced myself not to ride more than four days in a row ... take two off days in between (once in a while) ... and cut my milage down on days before I plan a long ride. At this point this year from last year I am at the same place, but feel much better on each ride, and I sleep much better. Oh, and I haven't been getting dropped during long climbs.

Lighten up ... it works.
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Old 07-02-04, 09:26 AM   #6
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Trouble sleeping and an elevated resting HR are tell-tale signs of over training. Nagging cold or flu symptoms are also something to watch out for.

The fact that you can ride fast, doesnt mean that you should. So, rest now or injure / burn out later, choice is yours.

If you are riding that much, try a 3 to 5 hour ride with low effort once or twice a week. 25 miles is good but you should put in some long hours to offset all the hard milage you are putting in. And to keep your motivation use the slow time in the saddle to picture yourself on your next hard day owning, using good form, feeling strong. Also, look around, nice stuff out there. =)
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