Monday, April 20, 2009

Slo-Poke Recovery Ride

I was invited along for a ride with some friends Saturday, and we ended up doing 38 miles in about 2:45 minutes. With an average speed of 13.52 it was a nice recovery ride for me, and a good workout for them, as there were a lot of hills on the ride. They were not long, dramatic hills, but there was hardly a flat spot on the entire route. I was glad we started early, well, early for me anyway, because we have been having record heat the last few days and climbing long, twisty hills it got pretty warm.

I took it easy on the hills early in the ride, using my gears and cadence to do the work and keeping the muscle strain/torque in check. After about an hour, and a rest stop at a very quaint nursery which hosted an Olde Tyme coffee shop, my legs started to get loose - just in time for the hills. It was nice to be able to talk and catch up with friends while getting a good ride in, and with only 4 on the ride, there was time for real conversation.

I shunned the pastries at the coffee shoppe, and stuck to my ride fuels. Training rides are priceless opportunities to hone your nutrition. With heat comes a need for more fluids and electrolytes, and blood tasked to cool your core flowing at the skin surface is not available for digestion, so sticking with your nutrition plan and noting how your body responds provides invaluable info for race day when temps climb and you need to modify or abandon your nutrition plan accordingly.

After a few miles of relative flat we turned onto what should be called the Serpent's Back. The road twisted and turned so much you couldn't see the road ahead to even tell if it was going up or downhill 500 yards ahead. This area around Newcastle and Lincoln features roads laid out like a psychedelic spider web laid down over what are foothills to the Sierra mountains 20 miles further east.

At one point we rounded a bend and the road uncharacteristically was visible for a half mile where it climbed up onto the major highway in the area. I decided to test my legs, stand and hammer up it out of the saddle in a sprint. I really expected my legs to balk, but they were very solid, so as I got closer to the top I made it an all-out sprint. I found a great bike computer online that will calculate power from grade and speed, so wanted to see if I could top the 500 watt mark. Too bad I forgot my speed! Arrrgggghhhh!!!

After a short nap I grabbed my Garmin and knocked on my neighbor's door. He loves new toys as much as I do. We decided to go for a ride on Sunday to get an elevation profile for the section from the apartment complex to Rodeo Pk in Folsom - the launch point for most of our serious training rides. Unfortunately, he kept wanting to tack on more climbing and miles, so I was starting to have 2nd thoughts. It was getting late, I still had to make dinner, and the Garmin wasn't set up yet. When I got up Sunday morning I decided I had pushed my luck with my legs far enough, and could feel a bit of fatigue in my bones, so I called and begged off.

After starting my day at 6:00 AM Saturday, and then staying up till 1:00 AM mounting and configuring my Garmin Edge 305, I was happy to stay home and watch the Lakers kick some butt on Sunday. After 35 miles on Monday, 60 miles on Thursday, and 38 on Saturday I was tired. My legs though were holding up quite well. A very pleasant surprise.

It seems that with pouring on the protein, taking a few 300mg Co-Q10 doses, and a daily dose of 1000mg of vitamin C and a lot of calcium, magnesium, & zinc targeted at tendons, I had quieted the quad muscle and/or tendon area and it has now made a nice recovery. The extra electrolytes in my Gatorade might be helping too. With the heat that will be tested soon.


Gotta Run said...

Legs are holding up... I would say. Love how they can hammer away on the rides. I treated mine to an hour nap yesterday. Today we are back on the saddle. :)

Thank you for ALL of the comments.

I am opting to not change any of the gear on my bike. Holding out for a new one later this year. Saving the dollars for one that is much closer to what I want. They sure can be $$$$$

Lourdes said...

It was great to have you with us last Saturday. Looking forward to the next time!

Grey Beard said...

Hummm, all of my female followers are looking to buy new bikes...I wonder what THAT means? :D

The cassette comes off in about 5 minutes so you'd move it to the new bike I'm sure. Most new bikes come with 12-25 cassettes, so ask the bike shop to swap that for you if you want to save yourself $65. The Ultegra cassettes are light, well-made and durable. I had a feeling you might be ready for a new bike. "Friends don't let friends ride aluminum" :D. Congrats on the ride - both finishing and in great form.

Grey Beard said...

I really enjoyed riding with you guys Lourdes. The pace was very restrained. Just what I needed. It was a bit of an indulgence, but a lot of fun flying down that long hill in the aerobars at 41 mph! ~:D You gotta come riding with me to Rescue. I'll even let you start at Karen's if you want. ;D