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Flexibility Issues(5 posts)

Flexibility IssuesJervis
Jun 5, 2003 9:42 AM
Recently after 20+ mile rides my leg muscles tighten up considerably. Not so much that it prohibits movement, but I'm noticably less flexible than I was before I started in on the bigger rides. I do a good amount of warm up and cool down before and after the ride and I stretch a bit afterwards, but nothing seems to help. I know that when muscles grow they tend to tighten up, but is there any way to alleviate this? Any experience, hints, or nutrition ideas are more than welcome. I just don't want to end up barely being able to bend down and touch my knees by the time I'm 30.

If you are doing 20 miles and this is your...eschelon
Jun 5, 2003 10:07 AM
limit to what you can handle...then you must accept the fact that those 20 miles puts your body to the limit and you can't expect your body to feel 100% limber or great...ah, those were the days when 20 miles used to suck me dry of energy...those were the days........ugh, sorry about that...just remincesing the "olden days".....

Anyway, don't ever expect your body to be limber after cycling. You have to think of it this way: if you bench pressed 25 pounds 1000 times in a row, you can't expect your chest and your arms to feel limber or loose. So why would you expect your legs and your body to feel limber after pedaling a few thousand times on the bike? When you mucles work, they have to constantly constrict to function...thereby producing lactic acid and other side effects of muscular use.

Keep stretching before, after, during, and any spare moments you got....which reminds me that I should make it a point to stretch more outside of pre-during cycling.
Jun 5, 2003 8:31 PM
It's not that I'm worn out or in pain, my legs are just kind of stiff. Which brings up more questions involving physical bike related ailments. I'm wondering if my handlebars are the correct width for me. Or possibly it's a stem issue? Or maybe geometry. My seat tube is 57cm
c-c and 58cm, my top tube is 46cm, my stem is 100 or 95mm and my handle bar is 42cm wide (I measured from the outside of the tubing, I'm not too familar with road measurments. The problem is I have a lot of trouble with my elbows hurting when I ride. I try bending them and my wrists and hands different directions but it still hurts like hell after like 15 miles. Anyone else had this problem? I'm 6'3" with a 32-34" inseam and I think about a 22" torso, so maybe I need a longer stem? Any help welcome.
to my untrained eye...reklar
Jun 6, 2003 2:44 AM
...sounds like your bike is the wrong size.

I'm 6'0" with a 33.5" inseam and I ride a 58cm bike (that usually translates to 57cm top tube). Fit kit for me claimed that 56.8 was ideal...

I assume you meant your bike has a 56cm top tube, not 46...

Take a look at this link:
Jun 6, 2003 3:53 AM
My elbows used to hurt during and after rides until I started using a shorter stem with more rise. If your handlebar is too low, it could be contributing to your other problems as well. Also, is your saddle the right height? Nothing tires out my legs more than a saddle that is too low. Occasionally I have had my saddle slip down because the seatpost binder bolt wasn't tight enough. I noticed the problem because my legs hurt and I was struggling on hills. Recently I had a tuneup done at a local shop and they apparently took my bike out for a spin and lowered the saddle about 1/2. It wasn't immediately obvious, but I really struggled on the hills the next time I rode. I checked my saddle height after the ride, raised it up to where I had it, and the problem was solved.