Saturday, June 9, 2012
Cramping, twitching and other wonders of long rides...
Thursday, June 7, 2012
With surgery looming and long rides a fading memory, I climbed on the bike with thoughts of a three-hour effort. I hadn’t done one so long in weeks and considered the implications of such a move...for about 10 seconds...and then headed out.
I have two primary courses and ride them often. I was on my Pekin Road ride...a straight out and back...which is good when you’re riding on an uncertain knee. Stop and turn around if things aren’t going well. Or not...it my case.
I felt great through the first hour and reached my pr marker only seconds behind that pace. I did have a tail wind and wasn’t really riding that hard. I wanted to save something for the return since I thought I might really need it. I went 90 minutes and turned. I was a little over 25 miles.
I felt strong on the way back, too, until I hit the two hour mark and the familiar cramps in my quads began. These painful, troubling spasms force me to ease my gearing and slow down. I don’t know where they come from and they always hit both legs at precisely the same time. One of life’s little exercising mysteries.
Anyway...I slowed somewhat and continued to battle a stiff headwind, but managed good time and actually pulled into the driveway exactly 90 minutes after I’d turned around. I was exhausted, but happy. I went to shower and was amazed to find the amount of salt crusted over my face that I did. I hadn’t felt like I was sweating so heavily, but clearly I was dropping electrolytes.
Holly made a dinner of pasta and shrimp and I took the opportunity to shake extra salt on everything. I also downed a huge smoothie and watched the multiple twitches in my calves slowly dissipate. I’ve got to talk to my nutritionist again. I’m sure something is being depleted on these long rides that, if I replenished, might end the twitching and cramping spasms. Then again...maybe I’m just getting old.
Bike Duration: Three hours.
Training Heart Rate: 120 bpm.
Calories burned during workout: 2500.