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43

"Optimal" cadence varies with what you're trying to optimze, so your question doesn't have a simple answer. Freely-chosen Cadence vs. a Targeted Cadence A recent review by Hansen et al. summarizes what is currently known about factors affecting choice of cadence. In particular, they conclude "[d]uring high-intensity cycling, close to the maximal aerobic ...


25

This is not an either-or proposition. Your bike is hitting the bumps and supporting your full weight (minus the very small proportion of weight that might be falling at that exact moment) regardless of how you stand when you hit the bumps. The difference is whether you're going to let the additional damping effects of the down tube, seat tube, bottom ...


22

For any given speed, you can either spin at a higher cadence in a lower gear, or a lower cadence in a higher gear. The high cadence + low gear combination should reduce the strain on your joints since you don't have to push as hard. You just have to do it more often. I like to ride around 90rpm and sometimes drift up to 100-110 especially if I'm trying to ...


21

If I see a significant bump coming (on my touring bike -- no suspension), or just a stretch of fairly rough pavement, I'll generally raise my bum a few inches off the seat and flex my arms, so that my legs and arms are the "springs". This in not only more pleasant than taking the hard bumps, it also helps the bike maintain contact with the road, reducing ...


18

This happens to runners more than bikers but is the same thing you describe... friction. I've done band-aids, tape and even special products (Nipguards) made for covering just the nipple area but the best remedy I've found is compression clothing. Even in the middle of summer, I will wear some skin tight Under Armour shirt. Heat Gear (odd naming, but ...


17

A scientific Journal, Chest Journal, published an article about the efficiency of heat exchange masks on asthmatic subjects during cold weather exercise. They found that the heat exchanger masks were at least as effective as pre-treatment with albuterol in preventing decline in lung function. I found several commercial heat exchange masks which could ...


14

The simplest advice is: just keep it up. Give your body time to adapt to the new workload you're putting on it, and it will get easier and easier. For drinks, you can buy gatorade powder and mix it yourself at home. $19.49 for 9 gallons of gatorade is way better than paying retail price for a quart at a time. As I understand carb loading, it's not ...


13

I am a physician (not practicing anymore), a biker, and an office worker. And I ride fixie. And I sometimes have knee discomfort. So, my few cents: Depending on HOW YOU SIT DURING WORK, specially how you rest your legs/feet, your knee might be twisted for a long time (hours a day). Watch yourself if it is happening or not. Take a rest on the fixie. I ...


12

I bring enough to dress small cuts and stop bleeding, at least until 911 could get to me. If you're riding in areas you might not be able to be reached by emergency services, or if you have particular medical issues that need specialty supplies, a kit like this would insufficient. Bandages/band-aids of a few different sizes Gauze -- usually a small roll ...


12

The purpose of the channel in a bike saddle is to reduce pressure to the perineum, which can cause numbness and other long-term problems. This is a matter of both comfort and health, although not everyone is affected. Individual body type, saddle design, bike fit, and riding style work together to make saddle fit a very personal issue. On a related note, ...


11

Hypothermia can sneak up on a person. Unless you're paying attention, you usually won't notice until you're extremely cold. Hypothermia can slow your reaction times and cause severe lapses in judgement, so be very careful out there! It's best to avoid it altogether, but if it happens, don't trust yourself to make good decisions. As far as what to wear: ...


11

I worked as a physician (not anymore nowadays, got into medical systems design), and I can guarantee you that either people and health professinals overemphasize the importance of the weight as if it was a single "magic number" regarding health, and it is not. Body fat percentage, cardiovascular endurance, muscle and joint flexibility, dietary habits and ...


10

As I became more experienced I noticed that I began to spin at a higher cadence. I typically stay between 85-95 now, while when I started I spun at around 70. But cadence is a very individual thing, and bike fit can play a large part in how comfortable you are at a particular cadence. If you find that you want to pedal faster, but have difficulty ...


10

Talk to a doctor The symptoms of waking up with tingly fingers make this sound consistent with carpal tunnel syndrome to my non-doctor opinion. Basically, as I understand it, a little bit of that now and then isn't a problem, but too much over time causes damage which can be permanent and cause some major hand problems. There's a bundle of nerves and ...


10

First off, unless you aspire to be a professional racer (or at least a highly competitive amateur) ignore the advice that you "must turn at least 90 rpm" or whatever. Secondly, even if you DO have such aspirations, you're not going to do well by trying to achieve a high cadence right from the start -- it's something that you must develop slowly. With ...


9

Most scientific studies on cycling and urogenital problems are written with clinicians in mind, to make them aware of possible symptoms that they will encounter. Often these studies get summarized into review articles. One such article (Leibovitch and Mor, 2005), reviewed 62 relevant studies. They say: The reported incidence of bicycling related ...


9

Clothing is a good choice for sun block while cycling. Unlike walking or standing still, there's always a breeze as long as you are pedaling which increases comfort. Long sleeves and long pants may be comfortable on a bike in hot weather even when they are uncomfortable indoors or walking outdoors. Pros for Sunscreen as sun protection while biking It's ...


9

Standing to pedal won't damage your knees. Supporting and propelling you when you are standing is exactly what knees are designed to do. If anything standing is better for your knees than sitting. When you are sitting down their motion is limited because the top and bottoms of your legs are 'fixed' in position. When you stand your knees and hips can move ...


9

Yes, too many electrolytes can do all sorts of bad things to you. Good article here: http://www.livestrong.com/article/521763-can-you-consume-too-much-electrolytes/ The U.S. Army has done a lot of research, here's probably the most pertinent paper: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10410838 In general, if you are mixing the drinks according to the ...


8

One suggestion: Neosporin. Every time you change a bandage, wash it out and slather that stuff on.


8

Hand numbness or tingling can happen for a variety of reasons. It could be a matter of fit, or simply tape or the handlebars themselves. Bike fit: How's your riding posture? If you're putting too much weight on your hands, it could be because you need to raise you saddle to allow you to put some of your weight on your legs. It's also possible you just ...


8

To be very to-the-point, in your situation I would first consider the following two things: Rise/exchange your handlebar to leave it at least some 8 inches above the saddle height; Have a good quality suspension seatpost. I have studied medicine (and have a little back pain, also), so the rationale is the following: This figure illustrates a part of ...


8

VO2 Max refers to the maximum volume of oxygen that an individual can use at maximum levels of intense aerobic exercise. It is usually reported as as milliliters of oxygen used in one minute per kilogram of body weight, though sometimes you see liters of oxygen per minute with no adjustment for body weight. The former measurement is more useful in exercise ...


8

A couple of potential quick fixes: Slow Down A Little If you cycle a bit slower (5-10%) you should find that takes a lot less out of you and it will only add a few minutes to your commute. Take The Bus One Day A Week If you exercise 5 days in a row you're going to feel tired, particularly on the 4th and 5th days. If you work Monday to Friday then try ...


8

There are a number of reasons you could be cramping - if that is, in fact, what it is. You are not properly warmed up before exerting yourself You are exceeding your limit of fitness You are not properly hydrated You have not eaten enough food to fuel your ride Without additional information it's really hard to diagnose something like this, but those are ...


7

From experience and from what little I've read cadence beats power (and cadence with power is the winner) - in general you want to be turning the pedals more often with less effort in a smooth motion not stomping down each time. To which end you probably want your cadence to be in the 90+ region as consistently as possible (including when climbing) I'm not ...



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