Thursday, July 9, 2009

Double Leg Quad Cramps

I am sure you all are eagerly awaiting pictures of 'Sweet Soddy Daisy' but you will need to continue to wait. Ahharg! I took some really great pictures last week, but the internet at the house is really slow. It took over an hour to load one picture. So I am trying to find a faster internet connection to load the rest. Oh well. Part of living in the sticks ;-)

Things have been going pretty well. I have discovered that waitressing is something to be left for the younger generation. Not that I physically can't do my job. That is not the problem. The real problem lies in the fact Andy and I are on opposite schedules and never get to see each other. A "younger" person usually doesn't have a) a house b) husband c) life plans... For instance, when I am ready to do something he is tired and when he is ready to do something I am tired. I am putting my resumé out there and pounding the pavement again. Maybe with a TN address it will come out better.

I went out for a 4 hour ride yesterday. Typically a ride like this doesn't immobilize me anymore, but yesterday was different. For those of you who ride 650c wheels (because you are a small person--like me), the idea of riding a 700c bike is totally out of the question, right? Wrong! Andy had a 50cm frame with 700c wheels -- WSD (Women Specific Design) at the shop and wanted me to try it out. I was a little concerned it wouldn't fit me because the wheel base was too big and I would be stretched out. Not a problem with women specific design. Andy left the house for downtown first. While I finished getting my things together, I missed his text message that asked for me to measure the saddle height on my old bike before I left. Whoops. Big whoops. I get to the Trek store and all is well until Andy asked, "Did you get my text?" Nope. Ok, we can eye-ball this pretty close before I leave on our ride in 30 seconds, right? Ha ha ha. Andy wasn't too sure I was fit on my bike correctly, but I reassured him it felt great. Off we go...

It was great. Being on a 700c wheel base from a 650c wheel base is TOTALLY different. I guess the only way I can describe it is I am one of the "big kids" on a 700c bike. I didn't have to work harder to keep up, like I usually do. I was able to draft and BE drafted. The climbs seemed shorter with only a little more effort. The only problem I had was my saddle was a little off. On the first climb I could tell something was wrong, but I didn't know what and didn't want to make it worse by lowering my saddle or raising it. So I endured. It wasn't that bad at all...or so I thought. After riding up Lookout Mountain (my first time on this climb) and descending on Burkholter (sp) I felt great. I got up over 45mph on the decent! Whoo Hoo! We rode though Lookout Valley for a while and then did the stair steps on some highway, not sure where we were, but thank goodness Kym was with me. We did that climb at a pretty easy pace, and then it it me. My saddle position was killing me. It felt like I was sitting on 2 searing hot stones that were zapping the power out of my legs. Ugh. I mentioned something to Kym and she said we were almost home only 35 minutes or so. I figured I could muster up the houtspa and get around the base of Lookout Mountain and head into downtown Chatt. Well my quads had another idea. Halfway around the base of Lookout (short climb...Illinoisans would call it a big hill ;-)) my right quad was starting to twinge. I turned to Kym and mentioned something, but I thought I could rub it out while on the bike. Then my left quad started to go. Trying to rub out both of your quads while climbing a hill, doesn't work too well. Consequently, we pulled off to the side and then BAM! Double BAM BAM! Both of my quads seized up. I looked down and my legs looked like they belonged to a body builder! I could see every muscle contracting AT THE SAME TIME! I then looked up at Kym (while standing over my bike) and said, "What do I do? I can't move." She came over and held my bike and I some how got off my bike and sat down with bent knees and rubbed out my legs. Ugh. That was awful.

Truth be told, I drank 60 ounces of fluid, but on a 4 hour ride in the south east summer... that doesn't cut it. Plus my position was a little off. Not that a 50cm / 700c bike was the problem. It was a great bike and I am so happy I can ride a "big girl" bike now. It think we are going to sell Beatrice (my road bike) and get me a new 2009 4.7 Madone road bike.

Although, my (future) bike would be a different color. With the compact crank and an 11-28 cassette in the should be pretty close gearing to my 650c road bike.

I am planning on keeping my tri-bike as a 650c. I think I would be too stretched out in aero position. Plus 650c wheels have some serious get up and go. I like that feel in a tri. Very aero and fast.

Sorry that was a little bike gear saturated, but when you are married to comes with the territory ;-) love him.

This weekend Jacqueline and I are doing the Waterfront Triathlon in Chattanooga. I am doing the swim, Crystal Galloway is doing the bike, and Jacqueline is running. There are 6 female we might have a shot at some hardware. Jacqueline is a running stud and her friend Crystal sounds like a bomber biker. I am also doing it on an individual basis too. Not sure how that will turn out, but we will see. I will post something after I get slaughtered ;-)

Much love, Heather

Chattanooga TN-- 83* feels like 85* wind out of the NE 1 mph with 58% humidity--Mostly sunny @ 12:00 pm

Bloomington IL-- 69* feels like 69* wind out of the ESE 8 mph with 77% humidity--Cloudy skies @ 11:00 am

Aurora IL-- 73* feels like 73* wind out of the ESE 4 mph with 65% humidity--Cloudy skies @ 11:00 am

1 comment:

Lyle said...

I would blame the seat position (or the crank length, or both) for your double cramp, not electrolytes. That has happened to me twice on the bike -- after very short distances -- and in both cases I'm convinced it's because my seat has slipped down a bit and I never take the time to stop and raise it even though I know better.

Another time, it happened to me when I tried to go for a jog, after months and months of high bike mileage and almost no walking at all, much less running. I got about two hundred yards from my house and both quads seized up simultaneously.

I think the muscle memory gets so habituated to a particular motion that when you mess with that motion, some of your muscle fibers contract in opposition to others that "aren't supposed to be contracting NOW" and then... pow.