Me legs ain't tired

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Me legs ain't tired

Postby europa » Tue Aug 31, 2010 10:51 am

Yesterday I did something I've been avoiding - I took the Europa up Expressway Hill. For those that don't know it, it's over 3km long, a bit of a bear and something even the fit riders think about, just not as nasty as say, Willunga Hill.

Anyways, climbing it on a fixed gear of just over 70" was something I'd been avoiding, but yesterday I did it. Yes, part of the ride was at 24" (two feet, geddit?), but most of it was stand and grind.

You'd expect tired legs afterwards and a bit of residual tiredness today wouldn't you. Well, there isn't any.

Once you crest the beast, you have a 1km downhill run that's fairly hefty itself when going the other way - again, not major but you see lots of red faces climbing it. I came over the crest, ducked under Majors Road, then flew down that hill at around 50km/hr - that's right, a cadence of about 150 and yes, it felt as quick as is sounds. It also felt slightly suicidal but I've got two good brakes so was able to keep things under control.

Anyways, discussing things with the lad last night (he's a serious sportsman so has an interest in such things), we postulate that the very high cadence, directly after the climb, flushed the lactic acid out of my leg muscles and that's why they don't feel 'tired and sore' today.

Any thoughts? I should be knackered. I'm not. Maybe I'm fitter than I think but ...

Richard

I did consider putting this in one of the other forums but suspected the fixed gear slant ie, climbing in a stupidly high gear and descending in a stupidly low gear still meant it was better here where such foolishness is understood
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by BNA » Tue Aug 31, 2010 5:22 pm

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Re: Me legs ain't tired

Postby europa » Tue Aug 31, 2010 5:22 pm

I also posted this on an American, 50+ forum that I also annoy. One bloke, from England as it happens, reported that he lives in a hilly area and after climbing a steep hill will, as he described it, 'silly spin' down the other side, the 'silly spin' being cadences of 110-120 with no effort, the idea being to clean out the lactic acid as I suggested.

I've always kept pedalling down hills to achieve this effect, but never to that extent which would explain why I haven't noticed the effect before. It seems like I've just lucked onto a good technique ... as long as I'm a wee bit more sensible about the execution in future :roll:

No to work it into my everyday riding armoury.

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Re: Me legs ain't tired

Postby Baldy » Tue Aug 31, 2010 8:55 pm

Theres a bloke who I bunch ride with[yes those ghastly plastic bikes and power ranger outfits] who does what you describe. Hes been riding and racing longer than Ive been drawing breath.

You could well be onto something there Richard.

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Re: Me legs ain't tired

Postby Mulger bill » Tue Aug 31, 2010 11:29 pm

:shock: What's that creaking noise?..

Learnt something today. What's the grade like Richard?

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Re: Me legs ain't tired

Postby hartleymartin » Wed Sep 01, 2010 12:04 am

Someone once told me that it was better for you to keep pedalling on downhills. It didn't make any sense until I read this thread.
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Re: Me legs ain't tired

Postby robsta » Wed Sep 01, 2010 6:47 am

After a race you often see pro`s spinning. Then they head for a massage, collect medals etc.
The rapid spinning with reduced effort does seem to be beneficial but maybe it does not have to be done immediately after the hill climb, as long as it is done before the body rests.
I never ride fixed so tend to find myself coasting down hills. I live at the top of a big hill. I try and see how far I can climb before grinding to a halt. No chance for a spinning recovery unless I go back down the hill ( and then I`d have to come back up again).
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Re: Me legs ain't tired

Postby backofthebunch » Wed Sep 01, 2010 12:56 pm

seems reasonable, active recovery is the best way to remove the lactic.
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Re: Me legs ain't tired

Postby europa » Wed Sep 01, 2010 6:33 pm

Did the same trip again today ... only it rained all the way to work, dried up throughout the day then rained all the way home :?

Forewarned being forearmed and all that tommyrot, I timed my efforts better. Still stopped once on the way up, then walked the steepest 200m. If I can make it to that first plateau without stopping, I reckon I can go all the way ... until I have to walk and I reckon I won't be walking at all in a month ... maybe. It's sobering to note that that was the hill that led me to fit a 26 tooth front granny to my geared bikes, coupled with a 32 tooth rear and that I still have to use them to get up that hill (hating that steep bit). The Europa's 48x18 so I'm not surprised I'm struggling. I should also note that I've always been a sit and spin climber but that won't work on the Europa, so it's stand and grind so I'm developing new muscles and learning new techniques.

Anyway, climb and recover mk 2.
Being more aware of the descent this time, I didn't let the speed get quite so high, topping out in the high 40's. At that speed, the legs are racing but I was able to spin smoothly and still apply enough leg drag to control my speed. The same thing happened in the morning going the other way. It's sobering to think that I may never hit such high speeds again. I am certainly no robot as there wasn't much left in my legs coming into my driveway, but apart from that, they feel fine

I like backofthebunch's term - active recovery, it works ... and I'm still learning new techniques. Ain't cycling great :D

Richard
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Re: Me legs ain't tired

Postby sogood » Wed Sep 01, 2010 7:17 pm

You've obviously have come a long way since you first posted on BNA. Take a look at your legs in the mirror and I'm sure there's your answer. :D
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Re: Me legs ain't tired

Postby europa » Sat Sep 04, 2010 11:28 am

sogood wrote:You've obviously have come a long way since you first posted on BNA. Take a look at your legs in the mirror and I'm sure there's your answer. :D


Thanks. They're work hardened muscles too :D

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