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The other day I decided to make the most of my time off work and decided to go spend a good few hours out on the bike so I took myself off down around the RNP, 130km, 2 200m of climbing in around 6 hours which was all well and good BUT I was physically destroyed by the end! My legs were tired but ok but my back was killing, neck was agony, backside was killing, I was chaffed to the bone and I think it took a god 2-3 days for my to get all feeling back down below!
For anyone that does some long rides, what am I missing? Is it my position on the bike or saddle or something that caused all the issues? Lack of strength in the back and core? Need for some mid ride pain killers and anti chaffing cream?
Any and all advice welcome!
How many long rides have you done before? If you are not used to being in the saddle for 6 hours then it will hurt the first time you do it.
Yes, your bike may not be adjusted to the ideal setup. You can get a professional bike fit done, or just tweak the settings yourself. A sore back could indicate any number of things such as saddle too low, bars too far away, riding position not efficient etc.
It does get easier the more times you do it. I remember when 100km was a massive effort, but now I can go and do a 120km ride without giving it any thought.
'11 Lynskey Cooper CX, '00 Hillbrick Steel Racing (Total Rebuild '10), '09 Electra Townie Original 21D
How much riding have you done before? Bike fit? Good quality kit?
What about posture on the bike - that's important too. I reckon a lot of this is to do with the bike fit and posture on the bike.
It does get easier once you've done a few of them - but this sounds like the bike fit and posture.
I'm not a doctor or physio so seek a qualified opinion.
Ok, just my own experience. Bike fit is critical. If you're on the wrong sized bike and set up then pain will ensue on long rides. Do some stretching when you stop. Vary your hand positions (bar tops, drops, hoods). Buy the best knicks you can afford (Assos FI Mille S5 for me). Use chamois cream. Get out of the saddle often.
I can't agree more - bike fit is critical when doing long rides.
Even with a properly sorted fit, 6 hours is a long time on the bike, so it's crucial to change position and have a bit of a stretch every so often, otherwise your body will get objectionable. You don't even have to stop riding to do it; stop pedalling for a few seconds, stand up & have a stretch, pedal a few strokes, stop pedalling again & do a different stretch.
Your body will adapt as you do more long sessions, but any substantial increase over your normal level is going to hurt.
I had a thought, but it got run over as it crossed my mind.
I make it a point to spot about every 50km and stretch/eat. As the duck said, any significant extensions to your normal distance is going to hurt!
Got through a 158km yesterday ok. The first big ride I did, 178km 6 weeks ago, was a killer and ended up just being about getting home.
Regarding the chafing, long hilly rides like RNP are gonna chafe anyone. My son and nephew just did 4 days straight in the Victorian Alps and despite both having excellent quality knicks and chamois cream they got minor chafing. Sliding forward and back on the seat under effort and standing up /sitting down constantly does it.
I might add that once you get to that point in the ride where you are dead and creeping, there is no further physical benefit to be gained, you might as well shut it down, you are doing more harm than good.
Thanks for the advice and the feedback.
It was the furthest ride I have done by about 30kms and was about 60 km above my average but had decent knicks on, Santini something or other but no chaffing cream so thats something I will definitely look into. I was trying to stretch on the bike although I found it hard, I probably needed to stop and rest more often but I was trying to really go hard. I have spent that long on the bike before but not with that kind of effort.
I was measured for my first bike but not this one, they copied the measurements across my Avanti to the Focus so I guess they are the same...in theory. Although to be honest they dont feel alike to ride so maybe I need a refit?
Great point about working the muscles and the mind, that was one thing I was pushing when I was really hurting...kept thinking to myself that there was no way I wasnt going to make it home and pushed it as hard as I could!
What is your posture like OFF of the bike? This will have more impact than you think...
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12 posts • Page 1 of 1
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