Originally Posted by Pierre
My research and gut feeling is telling me its more how I am doing things than what I am doing. Poor hydration practices, Too much of my time at high exertion levels, Poor warmup and cool down practices, Eating at the wrong times, Lack of sleep, Inadequate intervals of time between rides or falls.
All of those things pretty much leads to the "Duh, you friggin moron, what were you expecting" response in my head. Certainly I am making changes but what and how much is needed is where I am at.
I need to pick up a hydration system of the right size and type. Still researching this. Everytime I think I have it I read something else that opens another door. Sooner or later I have got to pull the trigger even if its not ideal. What do youz guys put in the water? Fish f**k in that stuff yeah know! that's why it tastes funny.
I use a CamelBak Hawg, but also have a bigger CamelBak Octaine 18 - I do long trips the Canadian Rockies and an extra shirt and jacket comes in handy at times, especially now that fall and cooler weather is more likely. I like CamelBak products because the bladders have been reliable and the packs are well made and last years. In Ohio, you might consider a smaller pack, depending on your needs. As far as stuff in water, that seems to be more of personal choice - what your stomach tolerates. Some friends just use water, others use Gatoraid, I'm using Ultima without any sugar most of the time, but put in sugars (a glucose polymer) on really long rides. If I use water only, I make sure that I eat products with sodium and potassium. The best thing to do is experiment and find what works for you.. Also on long rides, I try to eat/drink 300 to 400 calories per hour. For me, eating more can lead to a bloated feeling, eating less leads to bonk.
I need to figure out how to pace myself better and design the kind of buildup program you and others in this thread have talked about. I probably need to incorporate more time in between rides with some stretching and other excercise on off days. I am still a bit foggy on how much and what to include in a program. Anybody with a good book suggestion geared towards mountain biking at my age.
Keep it simple. At 57 you might need more time off without any exercise - a day per week at a minimum - two days sometimes. Keep super intense days to two per week. Try to do longer days at at 70% of max as a maximum, and do a longer day or two per week.
I am currently eating carbs about a half hour before I go. Seems like I run out of energy quicker if I don't but, that may not be the best practice. Nutrition wise I eat very good. Maybe I need to carry something to eat on the fly.
Usually, people can go an hour or two while exercising without having to eat, but you might consider an energy gel or something similar after 30 minutes, or get in the habit of using something like Gatoraid in your CamelBak. Eat more often on longer rides - I like to bring things like Sharkies or other easy snacks and put them in my bike jersey pocket for easy access. I find that I might not eat as well if I have to dig into the pack for things, but if it is easy to get at, I eat better.
One of the problems I was having was stiff neck and low grade headaches. One of the things I came across that helped a lot was to put a strap on my progressive trifocals to keep them in the right spot on my nose so I don't have to tilt my head back so far. I have also shortened up the cockpit, raised my saddle a bit more and moved the cleats on my shoes forward just a little. I am strongly considering shorter cranks.
Your photos just make me drool. Like everyone else, I want it now, if I wanted it a year from now I would start a year from now. just kidding, I am enjoying the discovery process and the journey in and of itself.