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Lactic Acid buildup...(7 posts)

Lactic Acid buildup...UncleMoe
Aug 18, 2001 8:38 AM
I was reading the thread below about preventing Lactic Acid buildup by taking Baking Soda. Has anyone else ever heard of the following?

Following a ride, shower your legs down with COLD water? I read this in a runners training article once. Apparently the worst thing you can do is take a nice hot shower following a workout. Cold shower, or simply taking tha water hose and running cold water down each leg for a minute or so helps your muscles to flush out the Lactic Acids that have built up.

If I recall, I think there is a time frame window of apportunity to do this, maybe even as short as 15 minutes. I do it, but I'm in fairly decent shape and my legs don't usually hurt. So I'm not sure if it makes a difference or not, but I do it anyway. Just wondering if others have heard of it.
mmmmWoof the dog
Aug 18, 2001 9:41 AM
It would seem logical that when you heat up your muscles with hot water that would promote circulation and therefore the removal of Lactic acid out of your muscles. That would be my guess, but there is probably some good reason behind cold water. We need some qualified help.
Sincerely

Woof the dog
mmmmJon Billheimer
Aug 18, 2001 1:13 PM
Cold water will reduce inflammation and promote vasoconstriction. However, to clear lactic acid, you're right, warm water will promote circulation. The better alternative, though, is to ride an easy cooldown. Fifteen minutes of easy spinning will clear any residual lactate buildup.

Some studies have shown that large doses of bicarbonate, and also sodium diphosphate if I remember correctly, does have a buffering effect on blood pH. The problem is, however, the upset stomach and diarrhea that usually accompanies this supplementation more than offsets the benefits. I don't remember the dosages used, but if you go to a search engine and look for phosphate loading for endurance performance, or some such designation, you can find the studies.
re: Lactic Acid buildup... maybe not.rpicayo
Aug 18, 2001 5:39 PM
I used to know an Olympic sprinter who swore by taking ice baths after hard workouts to alleviate soreness. While there is no way I'm jumping in the tub and putting bags of ice on my legs after riding, I do think a cold shower would be more beneficial than a warm one, at least in terms of how much soreness you have the next day. I don't know if it is regarding lactic acid buildup but probably think it is more a matter of reducing some of the muscle inflammation resulting the microtears created when you are building muscle.

I've pretty much confirmed this (at least regarding to my physiology) while snowboarding. The jacuzzi, while it feels great during and after usually makes the soreness/stiffness in my quads much worse than if I ice them or do nothing. Heat is evil. Ice and Advil the best.
R
re: Lactic Acid buildup... maybe not.Jon Billheimer
Aug 18, 2001 6:56 PM
You're right, RP. The faulty assumption was that lactic acid causes soreness. It doesn't, and it is cleared from the muscles and taken up by the liver and converted to glycogen or taken up by neighbouring muscle cells and converted to pyruvate within a few minutes. The microtears you refer to as well as free hydrogen electrons are thought to be responsible for muscle soreness. Cold water reduces inflammation and relieves soreness.
ThanxWoof the dog
Aug 18, 2001 7:50 PM
I am buying a huge freezer now. Hmm... how about dry ice. Hey, you know what, if you take Epp. tube (in many science labs they have tons) put a piece of dry ice in it and pour some Ethanol and then close the lid, after a few seconds it pops real loud. Rips the cap right off. The less ethanol you pour in, the longer it will delay....so you can put it right next to the person and back off. Hehe, great to scare the sh!t out of everyone. Its pretty late....
But seriously, cold shower makes sense to me now. Thank you.
Sincerely

Woof, the
This idea originally came from....JohnG
Aug 19, 2001 6:21 AM
My understanding is that horse trainers have used the cold water "treatment" for quite some time. Right after the horse finishes their workout the cold water is sprayed on the legs.

JohnG