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Went on my first AA/BB ride this past Saturday and got completely worn out. Well first, I just got off of a 12.5 hr midnight shift at 6 and the ride started at 0830. I thought I hydrated well enough and would be fine....NOPE!!!! Around the 20 mile mark, the calves started cramping. That was my first experience of pain while riding other than sore thighs muscle or saddle butt. Man, I never knew how that could effect your overall performance. Needless to say the next 27 miles were killer and the group was wayyyyyy out of sight. Anyone experience this type of tough lesson before or have tips to prevent it from happening again? Still motivated, and want to become a really good rider. Need patience..
 

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You definitely need to work up to a 50 mile ride and it would be good to do stretching exercises before and after. It just takes time and conditioning if you are a new rider.
 

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Two skinny J's
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Ride ride ride and when cramps come in the calves don't stop spinning! Keep riding with them and you soon you will keep up with them. If your not riding hard at least 3 times a week its gonna be hard. Rest and good nutrition will help too. They will most likely slow down a little when fall comes around. If they will let you and trust you try and ride mid pack. Having said that, you will never get to be a strong rider if you always stay back and never pull. The last in line works hard to hold a wheel as the pace changes. Most of all they have to know they can trust you in a pace line so be predictable.

I know when I ride with someone new I try and stay back off of them if they get in front me until I know they can hold a line. I suck at pulling but never pass on my turn even if it slows the peleton down a bit and I can't pull a consistent pace.

Soooooo in the end just keep spinning and working at it if that's what you want and remember " It never gets easier, you just get faster "

I am by no means a good rider but I can tell you these things from my experiences so take them for what it's worth to you. I'm sure others can add much more.
 

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Rola..you're right! And I did have the chance to pull and ride mid-pack several times. I was in awe at the pace and started thinking of my surroundings more than my ride at one point, but one bump in the road quickly got me refocused. I need that kind of push from a group because on my own to go all out for that pace and distance is a lot harder to do. I'm way more motivated to do well in a group(pride) than I have proven to be solo. I just started riding on May 22, 2011, but I'm committed to riding faster/better and hope to make guys like yourself comfortable with my skill set. I'll keep your quote in my mind. It makes complete since! Thanks and anymore...
 

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You definitely need to work up to a 50 mile ride and it would be good to do stretching exercises before and after. It just takes time and conditioning if you are a new rider.
Thanks Tom. I've done several 40+ plus rides already, though at a different pace. I look forward to the challenge of becoming better, and I realize that each time out I learn something else that I didn't already have in my newbie handbook. Thanks for the tips.:thumbsup:
 

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Nobody has said anything about you just coming off a twelve hour shift at work. That most likely was your problem. My last century ride was on my birthday when I turned 61. I got off work at 7am and the ride started at 8. I got there at about 8:30 and was playing catch up all day. It was tough. Being up all night working takes it's toll. I didn't have to worry about keeping up with a group, I knew the route, it was still a tough ride.
 

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Ride ride ride and when cramps come in the calves don't stop spinning! Keep riding with them and you soon you will keep up with them. If your not riding hard at least 3 times a week its gonna be hard. Rest and good nutrition will help too.
longjohn for that reason I ride early before work. It's very difficult for me to ride in the evening after having worked all day. I'm fortunate my shift is pretty conducive for doing that.
 

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Was it the muscle cramps, or did you just totally feel like you were DONE !!!! Already had good advise on cramps, but the official cycling term for just give out is Bonking. What happens there is the glycogen that the body uses for energy is depleted, and it can't convert fat stores back to glycogen fast enough to keep up with demand. For me gels (one about every 30 minutes or so with water ) prevent that I am totally exhausted feeling, but it won't help with cramps.
 

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Was it the muscle cramps, or did you just totally feel like you were DONE !!!! Already had good advise on cramps, but the official cycling term for just give out is Bonking. What happens there is the glycogen that the body uses for energy is depleted, and it can't convert fat stores back to glycogen fast enough to keep up with demand. For me gels (one about every 30 minutes or so with water ) prevent that I am totally exhausted feeling, but it won't help with cramps.
Bingo!! I bonked. My mind and parts of my body wanted to continue and no matter how much water I consumed or the gaterade I drank, nothing got me back to where I wanted or needed to be. Do all gels primarily work the same or is one better than the other?
 
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