I'm not a doctor but…
Cycling injury, recovery and health issues.
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19 posts • Page 1 of 1
So I've been riding for about 7 months, done about 5000kms and happy with my progress.
Done a couple of 100km+ rides, no big deal.
Did 125km 2 weeks ago with an average of 30.3, 577m elevation gain with a group... intense at times.
Thismorning I did 126km (different route), ave 30.6, 354m (no decent hills whatsoever) and no intensity. I've done todays route once before but today I pushed much more.
Both rides towards the end of the ride I felt stuffed as you'd expect, but far from bonking. Could of kept going if I needed to.
However today it was 7degrees & freezing cold for most of it and I ate less carbs.
2 weeks ago 1497 calories before and during ride total.
Today 683 calories before and during ride total.
After todays ride I feel totally bed-ridden. Absolutely 0 energy and just complete all-body lethargy, and exhaustion.
I've never felt this before and I've done much more intense rides with groups etc.
My question is, is this the result of the lack of calories I've eaten?
Would the cold weather contribute to this? I had arm & leg warmers on but was still bloody cold. I haven't ridden for 3 days.
I just can't believe how bad I feel.
I've ridden 70kms with 0 calories before and during ride and felt better than this.
Been doing some reading on this recently. Lack of carbs during the ride can do it. Staying fuelled during the ride boosts recovery. Not staying fuelled and then not taking on board enough after the ride to feed recovery can see your body entering a catabolic state where it canibalises itself to feed the recovery. I'm no expert, but the explanation certainly fits with my experience over many years, and also with the better results I've been getting recently from a change in strategy.
When I got home I had about 1500 calories within an hour... lots of carbs & protein. I've had about 2700 calories so far today (about 2600 burnt thismorning) with another 1900 or so to eat tonight. I'm not trying to lose weight so I'm not calorie deficient at all now, so I didn't think that would be an issue.
Should have eaten a bigger breakfast and ate/drank more on the ride.
75km on tuesday, 50km wednesday... my lightest week for a month or 2. I usually average 200-250 a week.
Apparently much depends on the form in which it's taken, and the timing. I get best results for myself by taking it in liquid form within 20 minutes of the end of the ride, and it needs to have protein.
For me, that looks like 600ml of skim milk with four huge heaped teaspoons of Milo. Supposedly the sugar helps carry the protein to your muscles, and best results are within 20 minutes of stepping off the bike. It needs to be skim milk, as fat supposedly interferes with the protein uptake, at least according to Joe Friel in his Training Bible series. Usually I'll follow up with a banana within an hour.
It certainly fits with my experience - I have less muscle soreness and feelings of fatigue and a lot more energy for the ride home if I've followed this regimen after the ride to work in the morning. If I delay it too long and don't get it in within half an hour, or even worse skip it, the ride home isn't a whole lot of fun and my concentration at work during the day isn't so brilliant either.
I've usually consumed a bottle of High5 en route to work, on top of breakfast (1 hr 15 to 1hr 30 rde length). When training I usually consume one bottle of High5, a gel and half a fruit bar per hour, and the same in a race. Less intense rides, the carb intake is less.
PS there's no way I'd be able to do a 70km ride in Sydney terrain on just breakfast and only water during the ride. I'd bonk big time after about an hour 30.
What you describe is classic signs of over-training for your current condition - that's not to say your not up to it generally but at this moment in time your body is not up to it!
Could be simple over work, could be a virus that has minimal symptoms until your ask a lot of your body. I doubt its calorific given the history you describe but such things are worthy of consideration.
Best thing to do - nothing! That is take a short break for at least two weeks. By all means ride but no more than an hour at a time and at a look at the view, riding with the kids type pace. Increase to your standard pace/distance over a month after that. Sounds a long time but keep going feeling like that and you'll be off the bike for much longer sooner or later.
Last edited by G-Ride on Sun Apr 01, 2012 9:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
+1, I've seen this a lot with new riders, they seemingly go from strength to strength for 3 to 6 months; then wham
Take a little break, you have earned it! Enjoy the break and return fresh and revitalised.
The biggest mistake made by riders is, to up the training programe to fast. By this I mean instead of doing a set rate of work/distance for a month to six weeks, they increase it every week/fortnight, therefore doing to much to soon.
I don't suffer fools easily and so long as you have done your best,you should have no regrets.
It could also be that you're coming down with something. It happened to me a few weeks ago (on a much shorter ride) and within a few days I ended up with a viral infection in my chest.
Hope not for your sake.
There are only two types of cyclist.
Those that have crashed and those that are about to.
Slept 12 hours lastnight, had a fever in the middle of the night and was intensely dehydrated. Doing nothing today indeed.... but I do feel a little better.
Promised the wife I'll have the week off and start slowly next weekend
It's definite virus symptoms, but I definitely have no shortness of breath or anything else chest related.
The fever is worrying, but in general it's just extreme fatigue.
I do wonder whats triggered it but... the distance wasn't an issue but it was probably just a combination of small factors that contributed.
Cheers for the comments everyone.
My money would definitely on negative fluid balance = dehydrated.
Most recreational athletes have a very poor understanding of hydration for endurance sport.
I'd suggest you google Allen Lim. He is the most respected cycling sports scientist in the world currently, and has a lot to say about the subject.
If you are riding at moderate to high intensities for >2 hrs, then hydration status is critical.
You shouldn't be getting on the bike before you replace the fluid you pee'd off overnight. And you should be replacing it with electrolyte, not water.
Then you need to replace all fluid lost each hour.
Then have 1.5x your net fluid deficit over the 3-4 hours after the ride.
The immune system is suppressed with higher intensity exercise, and it is even worse with dehydration.
Listen up....hydration and electrolyte status is more important than carb status.
And yet, in your first post, you don't mention hydration.
Time to read up on it.
That makes further sense.... 3 pints of beer friday arvo and didn't feel like I drank enough water to compensate.
Because it was so cold I wasn't sweating so of the 2 bidons I took with me (both with high5 electrolytes) I hadn't finished the 2nd by the time I got home.
I didn't feel dehydrated during the ride, but I'm guessing my body told me otherwise when I got home.
I wouldnt go as far to say you ARE overtraining, rather over-reaching or under-eating.
I would assess your diet first than look at designing a training plan, I wouldnt completely stop riding even though you feel rubbish, just take it easy and stretch well.
On the diet front, I would look at getting a blood test just to check for any indications, I would increase your fats, things like sardines, walnuts, coconut etc.
Anymore information just pM me.
If you can't explain it simply, then you don't understand it well enough.
I have an easy week every third. I call it my "recovery week". There is sound science behind doing this - look up "cycling training periodization". After coming off the recovery week, my next "on" week usually rocks. If I neglect to take it, I end up with either an injury or an illness. Most programs specify a recovery week every third, however I've taken Joe Friel's advice from the Mountain Biker's Training Bible that if you're north of 40, 1 in 3 is the go and I've found it to be good advice especially if I'm doing 7-8 hours a week on the bike.
However, 2 weeks off the bike is a major setback - lots of fitness lost.
Thumbs up for this comment. I'd still rate carb status as important, but it's not much use being carbed up properly if you're dehydrated. Dehydration can kill you. Bonking on the other hand is merely extremely unpleasant.
Let me get this strait you went on a 4hr 10min ride (126km (AT) 30.6 avg) with just 2 bottles fluids and didn't even drink the both of them?
Reguardlesss of temperature I'd be so dehydrated after that I would be peeing brown syrup and more than likely bed ridden or hospitalised on a drip after attempting that and still be wrecked for days after, and I train 15 - 20hrs p/wk, 400 - 600km p/wk, so I'm far from unfit.
I'm 74kg and drink 500ml - 800ml per hour depending on temp and pace, even in cold, rainy weather races I've drank close to 2.5lts fluids in over 3.5hrs riding and come back over a kilo lighter.
As mentioned dehydration can kill and you really need to educate youself.
Weighing yourself before and after training is advised, I've been training and racing for over 10yrs and still do this on a dailiy basis, although mostly because l'm training almost every day but still keep an eye on hydration and nutrition on my rest days.
Aussiebullet is right on the money. What he says fits with recommendations by the AIS and Sports Dietitians Australia.
Here's Allen Lim talking about hydration and electrolyte developments. It is a bit of a lead in to his new sports drink business, but he is a groundbreaking researcher on cyclist hydration and electrolyte intake.
Thanks for everyones input, with the consensus being I was severely dehydrated and electrolyte depleted.
Well I've had this week off completely. Luckily felt OK monday and only just feel back to 100% yesterday/today. Surprisingly I had lost my appetite this week as my stomach was affected also. Recent chocolate gorging has proved I'm all good now!
This morning I spent some time giving the bike some TLC ready for a ride tomorrow morning.
I've been invited to ride with a group which is apparently going to take it very easy, but I haven't ridden with any of them before and after last weekends episode I'm a little nervous!
I'm itching to get back on so I'll no doubt just bight the bullet and have a crack... adequately hydrated!
Thank you for this post. Researching hydration was on my “to do” list for the weekend.
2012 Oppy A4
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