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How to get energy for morning rides?

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How to get energy for morning rides?

Old 07-28-21, 07:41 PM
  #26  
wolfchild
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I just get up and go and don't worry about chasing numbers
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Old 07-28-21, 08:55 PM
  #27  
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Some of us never adapt to a diurnal schedule. If it was gonna happen it would have happened by now. I spent years in the Navy, usually getting up around 4:30 am, often cycling to work. I never really adapted, almost always felt sluggish during the commute to work, and didn't really begin to wake up until my afternoon commute.

I often worked part time, evenings and weekends, and always felt more energetic on the job, and on the nighttime rides to and from my part time jobs.

And it suited my main athletic pursuit when I was younger, amateur boxing. Most boxing matches start in the evening, sometimes afternoon. If they started in early morning I'd have been in trouble, or wouldn't have bothered. I didn't even do early morning roadwork like many boxers. The usual tradition was to get up before dawn for roadwork, shower, eat, go back to bed (or to school or work, depending), then do gym work and sparring later in the afternoon or evening. I always did everything in the afternoon or evening.

And because so many pro bouts occur at night, sometimes very late at night (relative to the participants' home clock), some boxers who are naturally diurnal had some difficulty adapting.

Now that I'm retired I don't even worry about it. In warm weather my routine -- if I have one -- is to walk or jog in late afternoon when it's hottest, rest, eat, and if I feel like it I'll ride my bike late at night or after midnight. If I have enough energy and ambition I'll ride until near dawn, then head home. I prefer that because it's cooler, there's less traffic and fewer idiot drivers to contend with. I can always tell what time it is without even looking, by the sudden increase in aggressive pickup truck drivers. Happens almost every day around 5 a.m. That's when I head home.

The main adjustments I've made were to invest in better lights, more of them, and watch more carefully for deer and other critters. Where I ride critters are more of a concern than drivers. Although between 10 pm and 4 am, deer aren't moving around much. And I ride with video cameras front and rear so my family and friends know whether I was killed by deer, skunk or driver. I figure one night I'll be impaled in the neck by a big buck doing buck stuff. Or tripped up by a skunk or armadillo. Somehow that seems less annoying than drivers.

Regarding coffee or caffeine, with regular consumption it has less effect, takes more of it, and seems to take longer to have any effect. If I need to be up early in the morning for a medical appointment, bike ride with friends (the only reason I'd ride a bike in the morning), etc., I'll get up a couple of hours earlier than necessary and drink some coffee or caffeinated beverage or snack early. Then go back to bed. By the time I need to get up the caffeine is working. I get a lot of headaches, back and neck aches, etc., from injuries, so sometimes I'll take Excedrin or the generic -- a mix of aspirin, acetaminophen and caffeine -- an hour or so before I need to be up. By the time the alarm goes off the pain is reduced, I'm slightly more alert, and I'm no longer wishing a tornado would just wipe out the entire town and get it over with.
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Old 07-28-21, 09:21 PM
  #28  
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Anything under 90 minutes, I do on just coffee.
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Old 07-28-21, 09:30 PM
  #29  
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It's known but not well understood that heart attacks are more common in the morning, and more frequently fatal. Dehydration is considered a factor. Other theories exist; some could affect performance.

A google search on athletic performance at different times of day finds results indicating late afternoon or evening are ideal.

IOW, morning suck, as we all knew already. Coffee as a morning stimulant is legit.

Compare morning performance to morning performance; leave evenings out of the equation.
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Old 07-29-21, 01:10 AM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by 1979schwinn View Post
Go to bed earlier. And Coffee.

^ This. I'm generally a morning person anyway so that of course helps (and a boring early-nighter).

Get up, bowl of porridge or overnight oats, double espresso, kit up, go chase those KOMs!

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Old 07-29-21, 01:47 AM
  #31  
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This morning I ate no breakfast, drank no coffee, and rode 50km. I brought a bottle of water and two small bananas. I ate Banana One around 10km in and Banana Two: The Sequel at around 25km. I drank about two-thirds of the water. It felt much better than yesterday when I did the same thing but with neither Banana One nor its later iteration, Banana Two: The Sequel.

Does it mean anything? I know it means that I will once more bring a banana duo with me. Beyond that, I don't know.
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Old 07-29-21, 01:49 AM
  #32  
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One may wonder, "How did he know when to consume said bananas?"

Wonder no more.

I knew to eat them when I was hungry.
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Old 07-29-21, 01:57 AM
  #33  
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Drink some white kratom tea and you'll be ready for a century ride haha
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Old 07-29-21, 07:20 AM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by scottfsmith View Post
Currently I am doing about 2.5 hours a week total.
Ah. In that case, I'd just ride more and with much less concern for performance metrics.
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Old 07-29-21, 08:44 AM
  #35  
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I do my workout rides in the morning, since it's a lot cooler than trying to ride in the heat of the day during the summer. But I don't do anything for energy. I get up at 5 AM and just go out and ride 10 miles, then go back home, do my morning get-ready-for-work routine which includes breakfast. I always seem to have enough energy to ride 10 miles in under 45 minutes.

Now I will admit that sometimes at 5 AM I'm too tired to drag myself out of bed and ride, on those mornings I sleep in until 6 and skip the ride. Sometimes I just need sleep.
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Old 07-29-21, 08:54 AM
  #36  
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When I do long events that start at 4 am, I only drink a double espresso beforehand. Then, I wait about 30-40 minutes on the bike to start eating. You don't want to start with an insulin spike. It is usually recommended to eat 2-3 hours before a hard effort. I find myself getting a little weak a 1-3 pm and then feel very strong as the ride progresses starting at 4-5 pm and then all is good until the terrible 2-5 am stretch and then I am good again.

In the OP's case, his power duration curve is absolutely not showing a loss of power. He is misinterpreting the result. In fact, it shows a personal best at 4 minutes. These are the hardest efforts. The kind where you want to puke. If he wants to do a 20 minute personal best, his power at 4 minutes should have been around 12-15% less than what it was and the curve would be pretty flat right out to 20 minutes, touching or exceeding prior personal best,
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Old 07-29-21, 09:14 AM
  #37  
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I generally start my rides about lunch time. That's when the humidity has gone down but is still 3 to 4 hours from the hottest part of our day. Suns directly overhead though so shade is less available. Oh well, everything is a compromise. Right?

I never feel real peppy either in the mornings. Any time I'm not feeling peppy for a ride, I still go anyway. Yesterday the humidity was really high. Haze in the trees tops as the temp/dewpoint was within a degree of each other when I started my ride at 9:25am. 40 minutes into my ride I was feeling great and pedaled on for a total of 1 hr 59 min. I stopped only because I'd only brought 2 bottles with me and had other things to do later in the day.

So don't not ride because you don't feel like you have no energy. Ride and find out. If you ride in high temps and/or high humidity, then accept that your performance will suffer. Realize your performance will suffer even more if you only ride occasionally.
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Old 07-29-21, 01:27 PM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62 View Post
In the OP's case, his power duration curve is absolutely not showing a loss of power. He is misinterpreting the result. In fact, it shows a personal best at 4 minutes. These are the hardest efforts. The kind where you want to puke. If he wants to do a 20 minute personal best, his power at 4 minutes should have been around 12-15% less than what it was and the curve would be pretty flat right out to 20 minutes, touching or exceeding prior personal best,
That is because there was a long hill which I wanted to make a strong effort up the whole thing. This ride was a new route I had not done before so it was not in the 6-week past. The big hill had a lot of rest before (massive downhill - down one side of the river valley, up the other) so I was also well-rested when hitting that uphill. Anyway I think that is just an artifact of the particular ride I was on.

I always do my rides however I feel beforehand. I have surprised myself many times, both being much better and much worse than expected before.
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Old 07-29-21, 10:47 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by Lazyass View Post
Drink some white kratom tea and you'll be ready for a century ride haha
Fact. After being hit by a car in 2018, then being diagnosed with thyroid cancer, I wouldn't have gotten through that year without kratom. Especially after my health care system quoted me a wait of up to 6 months for an appointment with their pain management clinic. It's the most effective pain reliever I've tried that doesn't have significant side effects such as drowsiness or buzziness like stimulants, and doesn't aggravate my auto-immune disorder like NSAIDs do. It just knocks down the pain enough that I still know it's there, but I can function and get busy. I usually mix it with iced coffee, chocolate milk (masks the bitterness - the tea is awful unless it's heavily sweetened), a couple of spoons of whey protein powder. In 15-30 minutes I feel human again and ready to go.

Seriously, it's very useful and very affordable. I hope it stays that way, for my sake and that of other veterans and other folks with chronic pain and disabilities. The distributors I buy from say they have their products lab tested for e coli, salmonella, heavy metals, etc. And the Asian growers are being encouraged to engage in safe and healthy farming techniques. Indonesia recently announced it would loosen restrictions on kratom to encourage it as a cash crop. For years it was grown, with the knowledge of the government, but only for sale outside of Asia. Now they seem to be regarding it pretty comparably to CBD as being beneficial with careful use.

The negative hype in some media outlets is grossly exaggerated, usually involving serial substance abusers who combined massive amounts of kratom with prescription and non-prescription opiates, booze, etc., and then the OD was blamed on kratom. They might as well have blamed the Mountain Dew, Cheetos and Slim Jims in the deceased's stomach.
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Old 07-30-21, 02:16 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
Fact. After being hit by a car in 2018, then being diagnosed with thyroid cancer, I wouldn't have gotten through that year without kratom.
A couple of years ago I started drinking kava in the evening for sleep. I had a 25+ year insomnia nightmare and I was at the point where I was taking 4-5 OTC sleep aids and it started messing me up. Kava completely changed my life and I started sleeping like I did when I was a kid.

In April I was on vacation in Boone, NC with my family in a cabin. The last day I was out of kava and saw there was a kava bar at the university campus in town. When I went there I saw they also had kratom tea. I had heard about it but didn't really know anything. After speaking with the guy there I ended up buying a double white kratom tea. The next morning right before I was going to make the 4 hour drive home I drank the tea. I was blown away with it, I felt like pulling off the highway and going on a 12 mile run. Then I thought how it would be to drink it in the morning before my bike rides.

To make it short, before I got home I stopped at a shop where I had seen a kratom sign and ended up buying some. Now I mix 8g in a glass of water when I wake up as a coffee substitute and I've had the best starts to my days ever. I ride my bike more than ever. I'll probably drink it forever. You just have to be careful if you have an addictive personality because I read about some people who are taking insane amounts and go crazy with it. Apparently it's good for people who are trying to quit hard drugs like heroin. But I totally see why it's popular with the college crowd, I could write a master thesis after drinking it haha

I never had red kratom but I understand it's good for pain with people like you. I use white and green. The only single thing I don't like about it is I have to go into a head shop and buy it, I've never been into smoking pot or anything but that shop has very good stuff. I bought a kilo last month and it will last me till the end of the year.

Here's Lance learning about it


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Old 07-30-21, 04:49 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by scottfsmith View Post
That is because there was a long hill which I wanted to make a strong effort up the whole thing. This ride was a new route I had not done before so it was not in the 6-week past. The big hill had a lot of rest before (massive downhill - down one side of the river valley, up the other) so I was also well-rested when hitting that uphill. Anyway I think that is just an artifact of the particular ride I was on.

I always do my rides however I feel beforehand. I have surprised myself many times, both being much better and much worse than expected before.
Exactly.

It is not a power curve issue.
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Old 07-30-21, 05:10 AM
  #42  
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I've never trained with a power meter, but I did do morning rides (4:30 am - 6:30 am 3-4 days/wk) for over a year, before my wife put her foot down. (I don't race, so I didn't have a good excuse for making her "a cycling widow" - her words. Plus, you know, crashes (3), because I couldn't see road hazards - a shallow construction trench across the road; debris in corners; etc. - at 20+ mph in the dark.)

Although my body did get used to riding early in the morning, I don't think I ever got to the point where my early morning rides were as fast as my weekend rides during the day. Rides later in the day often felt harder because, surprise, I was able to work harder. It wasn't easy to get my HR up that early in the morning, although eventually I was able to work up to doing lactate threshold sessions (using HR, not power).

Everyone is different, but IME it was difficult to make harder efforts early in the morning, and it took time to get to a place where I could sustain hard efforts at that time of day.
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Old 07-30-21, 08:04 AM
  #43  
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I tend to have faster rides later in the day, but I ride almost every morning. When I need inspiration I try to set a new speed record for my morning route.
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Old 08-02-21, 07:41 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by scottfsmith View Post
It is really hot here so I am switching to doing more morning rides. I'm not a real morning person though and I notice it in my performance. Here for example is my power curve on the ride I did this morning, plotted against my 6-week average (which is probably 80% not-in-morning). As you can see I had a lot less on the burst side, and 10-15 watts less on average. I felt good other than being a bit lower on energy, and was plenty cool since it was not that hot and I was wetting myself with a bottle of ice water.

Part of it I expect is just experience, as I do more AM rides I will adapt. But, I'm curious what morning regulars do to get enough energy. Currently I am eating my usual small breakfast of one piece of PB toast, and also quaffing one gel before I prep for the ride (I added the latter after I noticed my lower energy levels). I don't do anything special the night before. Since I am going to be riding 15 minutes after breakfast I don't really want to eat too much, but maybe I should eat more? Or, eat more the night before??

I am very much a morning person. I have the most energy then (also only need ~6 to 6-1/2 hours of sleep). I do morning rides (as in as the sun rises) for a number of reasons:

1. Less traffic (tho, that will change as the days shorten and we get off DST in the fall) and fewer people on the MUPs
2. Air is fresh and clean. Since there are much fewer cars at that time, there's that much less pollution in the air.
3. Cooler (tho, that will also change to "colder", as much as it can in the SF Bay Area) as we head toward fall
4. When I do my longer ride out to the bay on Wed., there is a large variety of shore birds and water fowl doing their thing in the sloughs
5. Doing my ride 1st thing in the morning allows me to get it done, take a shower and have my whole day ahead of me (nothing better than to come home sweaty and get into that warm shower to clean up). I also feel more energized for my day. Great feeling....

There are prob'ly other reasons but those are at the top of my list.

I neglected to mention that I ride a mtn. bike and I am also 68-1/2 yrs. old, so there's that, fwiw

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Old 08-02-21, 10:44 PM
  #45  
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My secret, or was, is a quad espresso and a biscotti. The biscotti is just to break up sips.
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Old 08-03-21, 02:01 AM
  #46  
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Hi,Getting good sleep will help you feel excited and ready to ride again the next day. Avoid coffee and foods with a high sugar content before bed. “You don't want a big bowl of chocolate ice cream and coffee before bed,” says Powers. Try a cup of chamomile tea.
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Old 08-03-21, 01:24 PM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
Some of us never adapt to a diurnal schedule. If it was gonna happen it would have happened by now. I spent years in the Navy, usually getting up around 4:30 am, often cycling to work. I never really adapted, almost always felt sluggish during the commute to work, and didn't really begin to wake up until my afternoon commute.

I often worked part time, evenings and weekends, and always felt more energetic on the job, and on the nighttime rides to and from my part time jobs.

And it suited my main athletic pursuit when I was younger, amateur boxing. Most boxing matches start in the evening, sometimes afternoon. If they started in early morning I'd have been in trouble, or wouldn't have bothered. I didn't even do early morning roadwork like many boxers. The usual tradition was to get up before dawn for roadwork, shower, eat, go back to bed (or to school or work, depending), then do gym work and sparring later in the afternoon or evening. I always did everything in the afternoon or evening.

And because so many pro bouts occur at night, sometimes very late at night (relative to the participants' home clock), some boxers who are naturally diurnal had some difficulty adapting.

Now that I'm retired I don't even worry about it. In warm weather my routine -- if I have one -- is to walk or jog in late afternoon when it's hottest, rest, eat, and if I feel like it I'll ride my bike late at night or after midnight. If I have enough energy and ambition I'll ride until near dawn, then head home. I prefer that because it's cooler, there's less traffic and fewer idiot drivers to contend with. I can always tell what time it is without even looking, by the sudden increase in aggressive pickup truck drivers. Happens almost every day around 5 a.m. That's when I head home.

The main adjustments I've made were to invest in better lights, more of them, and watch more carefully for deer and other critters. Where I ride critters are more of a concern than drivers. Although between 10 pm and 4 am, deer aren't moving around much. And I ride with video cameras front and rear so my family and friends know whether I was killed by deer, skunk or driver. I figure one night I'll be impaled in the neck by a big buck doing buck stuff. Or tripped up by a skunk or armadillo. Somehow that seems less annoying than drivers.

Regarding coffee or caffeine, with regular consumption it has less effect, takes more of it, and seems to take longer to have any effect. If I need to be up early in the morning for a medical appointment, bike ride with friends (the only reason I'd ride a bike in the morning), etc., I'll get up a couple of hours earlier than necessary and drink some coffee or caffeinated beverage or snack early. Then go back to bed. By the time I need to get up the caffeine is working. I get a lot of headaches, back and neck aches, etc., from injuries, so sometimes I'll take Excedrin or the generic -- a mix of aspirin, acetaminophen and caffeine -- an hour or so before I need to be up. By the time the alarm goes off the pain is reduced, I'm slightly more alert, and I'm no longer wishing a tornado would just wipe out the entire town and get it over with.

Reading this was so enjoyable. Thanks! Great post!!
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Old 08-04-21, 11:49 AM
  #48  
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to be that close (for longer durations) to your 6 week best effort is really pretty good. knowing that youíre only riding 2.5 hours a week, that isnít too surprising but there are many factors which will keep you 5-15% off your ďbest everĒ for any interval. many routes simply donít have the conditions to absolutely crank for 5 minutes, or a 20 minute stretch will have lots of stoplights, or wet roads, or whatever.

itís really unlikely that you need to eat (or even drink) a bunch before a 45 minute ride. just something small to get your body going, stretch, jump around a bit, wake up, go.

as to the significant difference at the burst end Ö did you actually TRY to do a best effort sprint for 15 or 30 seconds? i know that for me to push that curve up, i have to try and do so. iíll identify a slight downhill or uphill or sufficient length, get the heart rate close to max (which for me is 115-120) and the speed to the right zone for a high gear peak cadence effort before that section starts, look at my timer, and then stand up and crank it as hard as i absolutely can. a quick glance down once or twice tells me where i am relative to the part of the curve iím trying to push up (30 seconds, letís say.)

i donít know if this is true for everyone, but my heart rate and especially blood pressure are notably lower in the morning, which results in overall slightly less output for the same degree of perceived fatigue.
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