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How long does it take for your legs to wake up?

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How long does it take for your legs to wake up?

Old 06-16-21, 04:56 PM
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a_d_a_m
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How long does it take for your legs to wake up?

To the folks in this subforum, just wondering if you have a dial-in period with your legs every time you get on the bike.

I always feel like I need 5 to 8 miles before my legs are fully awake and ready to pedal. Those first 20-40 minutes are just misery most of the time...
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Old 06-16-21, 05:50 PM
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I'm only doing short rides less than 5 to 10 miles about 5 days a week. My first down and up hill is right out the door. It takes about from my living room to the end of the driveway for my legs to wake up. When I hit that first little hill its a BUGGER!!! All awake from then on...
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Old 06-16-21, 08:13 PM
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8-10 for me.
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Old 06-17-21, 05:29 AM
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Originally Posted by UCantTouchThis View Post
Out of curiosity, wondering how old you guys is? It takes me longer to warm up now, more than it did 15 years ago. 2 mile back then, 7 to 8 now.

But 58 years old, in the old fart category now.
I'm a few years behind you, but my friends/co-workers say the label still fits.

For me: I try to stretch a little before the ride, which helps (after about the first two miles or so, I'm as inefficient or efficient as I'm going to be on that ride.) Without stretching, double that.
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Old 06-17-21, 07:24 AM
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It depends, but usually about 2-3 miles for me.
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Old 06-17-21, 07:25 AM
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Originally Posted by UCantTouchThis View Post
Out of curiosity, wondering how old you guys is? It takes me longer to warm up now, more than it did 15 years ago. 2 mile back then, 7 to 8 now.

But 58 years old, in the old fart category now.
I'm 50, but still get warmed up after about 2 or 3 miles. Maybe 4.
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Old 06-17-21, 10:23 AM
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I know not of this “warming up” of which you speak. I put my foot on the pedal and can go to a full sprint if needed.
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Old 06-17-21, 01:54 PM
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I've always found that, whether with cycling or running, the legs feel best and at their strongest about a half hour into the exercise. Blood flow's better, oxygenation's better, whatever modest tightness might have existed has disappeared. That translates to ~5-6 miles on a bike, for me.
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Old 06-17-21, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
I know not of this “warming up” of which you speak. I put my foot on the pedal and can go to a full sprint if needed.
I prefer to warm up for a half a mile or so first.

10 miles? That would be up, or over the ridge and out of town (in three directions)!
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Old 06-17-21, 05:49 PM
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i need at least 5 miles....then i can go bawls out.
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Old 06-18-21, 12:47 AM
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I’m 51, but have always been a slow starter. I need about 20 minutes to warm up, regardless of intensity. And it’s bad; it’s uncomfortable and fills me with doubt about my ability. The harder I have to go early, the worse I feel. I think it’s why I’m a bad racer; I have anxiety when others have adrenaline.
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Old 06-18-21, 03:39 AM
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Originally Posted by a_d_a_m View Post
To the folks in this subforum, just wondering if you have a dial-in period with your legs every time you get on the bike.

I always feel like I need 5 to 8 miles before my legs are fully awake and ready to pedal. Those first 20-40 minutes are just misery most of the time...
I agree. Same with me. I always look to get to 7 miles , then I feel that they begin to loosen off and work properly.
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Old 06-18-21, 07:19 AM
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I remember reading something about metabolism & the sensation of a second wind, whereby one starts with a certain oxygen level in their bloodstream, strains their muscles thereby reducing the oxygen level a little, then increased respiration works to increase the oxygen level back up, perhaps surpassing the initial starting level. & our brains & body can sense this increase in oxygen & we feel better

on a former bike commute, I started with about 2 miles of easy downhill & level pedaling, then hit a large steep hill requiring out of the saddle pedaling for a few minutes. I remember liking it & feeling like that hill helped me energize somehow, enabling me to power up the next long grade in traffic
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Old 06-18-21, 07:27 AM
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Originally Posted by pdlamb View Post
I prefer to warm up for a half a mile or so first.

10 miles? That would be up, or over the ridge and out of town (in three directions)!
Perhaps my lack of needing a warm up comes from years of commuting. If I were to take it easy for some of the mileages suggested here, I would be late to work and it would take a couple of hours to get there.

I did ride with a guy long ago who had an extremely long warm up period. For the first 10 miles he was always threatening to turn around. For the second 10, he was still considering it but was say something along the lines of “I’m not feeling it but I guess I’ll just keep going”. At 30 miles, he’d start saying “I’m feeling a little better but….” By the time we’d reached 75 miles, the son of a dog was sprinting for signs like he was going to win money. I wanted to go Team Cinzano on him!
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Old 06-18-21, 07:47 AM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
I know not of this “warming up” of which you speak. I put my foot on the pedal and can go to a full sprint if needed.
Sometimes my legs want to complain between 2 or 3 miles into a ride, but after that they understand what's going on and get to work.
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Old 06-18-21, 07:48 AM
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Originally Posted by chaadster View Post
I’m 51, but have always been a slow starter. I need about 20 minutes to warm up, regardless of intensity. And it’s bad; it’s uncomfortable and fills me with doubt about my ability. The harder I have to go early, the worse I feel. I think it’s why I’m a bad racer; I have anxiety when others have adrenaline.
Maybe it's just us old farts who are like that. What I wouldn't give to have my 20 year old body again.
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Old 06-18-21, 03:41 PM
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Originally Posted by UCantTouchThis View Post
Plan ahead. I've never been a last minute man. Especially on a ride that last 2 hours….Not to mention, the warm up period is to get one beyond the stiff feeling of first getting on a bike.
I don’t need to “plan ahead” because I don’t feel any “stiff feeling” when I get on a bike, even at sub-freezing temperatures. “Going slow” for X number of miles if of no benefit to me at anytime of year. In fact, being able to transition immediately to hard effort helps at those sub-freezing temperatures. If I go slow, I’m just going to get cold.

Perhaps I’m just different from you and others.
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Old 06-18-21, 10:07 PM
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At 77 years young, it takes 8-10 miles and a hill to open my lungs, then I’m good to go …
JD
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Old 06-18-21, 11:42 PM
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Depends on the length of the ride. There's warmed up for a short hard effort, then there's achieving a steady state for an all day effort. The former is maybe five miles, while the latter may take forty.

On a really long brevet, 1000k or longer, when the distance behind is as impossibly far as the distance ahead, riding the bike is life - it's all there is. Maybe that's not woken legs, but it feels like something physiological. That the legs work at all seems magical, but they just do. I'm sure it's not right, but at that point i think of my legs as being like my heart - the'll just go on forever. It's pretty cool when that happens.

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Old 06-19-21, 12:43 PM
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51 yrs young here. It takes me about 4-5 miles for my legs to wake up. Then after that I am good to go. Today I did about 45 miles and felt pretty good during the ride. But now both my thighs are giving me the bird. It will be a sore for the rest of the day. Will take tomorrow off or just go on a short 5-6 mile ride.
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Old 06-20-21, 09:26 PM
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Less than a mile. That's how far it is to get out of my housing tract and down the road to the main roadway. I might go slow for longer if there's a headwind when I get out to the main roadway so I don't tie-up from pushing into that wind.
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Old 06-21-21, 09:48 AM
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A half hour to 40 minutes before my legs and lungs come to an agreement and start working together. Once that happens I can enjoy the ride for a few hours.
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Old 08-05-21, 10:41 PM
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I start slow and easy. Then I slowly ramp up to pedaling harder. After 5 miles I'm loosened up pretty well. However as more miles go by I get faster. When I played league basketball it was much the same thing. Easy warm up and lay ups then the game would start and it would take about 5 minutes of sprinting to get the legs muscles hot. Once the legs are hot it is much harder to hurt your muscle and tendons. I am very wary of doing too much from a cold start. Once the legs are hot you can really push hard without hurting yourself.
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Old 08-08-21, 05:18 AM
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We were talking about this after the club ride yesterday. It seems to take me about 20 miles before I feel "right" and my HR settles down. I think it's more lungs than legs. It's not a problem if the ride starts out slowly. Some other 70+ guys related similar. This has become more noticeable as I've aged. It sucks but at least I can still ride w/o a motor.
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Old 08-08-21, 10:18 PM
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv View Post
We were talking about this after the club ride yesterday. It seems to take me about 20 miles before I feel "right" and my HR settles down. I think it's more lungs than legs. It's not a problem if the ride starts out slowly. Some other 70+ guys related similar. This has become more noticeable as I've aged. It sucks but at least I can still ride w/o a motor.
Recently bought my wife a RAD step thru e bike. She is now able to keep up with me and goes on my 20 mile rides regularly now. She hasn't been able to do that in many a year. I notice e bikes everywhere. There are a lot of stealth e bikes also. Expensive bikes with no visible batteries and riders in riding suits going so fast that they could be in the peloton at the Tour de France. Even better are the upright fat tire e bike crowd, mom and dad in regular street clothing catching the fast guys on the bike trail. As long as I can motivate a bike to go 20 to 30 miles I'm holding off on an e bike for me. I'm with you on that.
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