QUESTION: I'm a mountain biker, but I want to get faster and I've heard that I should be training on a road bike if I want to improve my cardiovascular fitness. But I'm a little worried about traffic. Is road cycling dangerous? Bob R ANSWER: Worrying about distracted and drunk drivers or those with road rage against cyclists is a common occurrence with road cyclists. … [Read more...] about Is Road Cycling Dangerous?
1Training & Health
by Lars Hundley We've heard it from Coach John Hughes many times that regular foods from the convenience store like Peppermint Patty and Fig Newtons have more carbs than energy bars and gels, and often taste better. A new scientific study in the Journal of Applied Physiology shows that regular potatoes are also just as effective as energy gels when it comes to cycling … [Read more...] about Potatoes Just as Effective as Energy Gels for Cyclists
by Martin Sigrist Editor's note: A few weeks ago, we received an inspiring comment from one of our readers on the article by Coach Hughes, Setting Goals As You Grow Older. I traded emails with the commenter and asked if he would let us adapt his comments into a short article, and he agreed. Below is his commentary. … [Read more...] about A Reader Responds: Getting Older Doesn’t Have to Mean Getting Slower
By Stan Purdum One memorable day on my ride on US 62, from Niagara Falls, New York, to El Paso, Texas, occurred when I crossed the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers. I started the day in Paducah, Kentucky. Here’s an excerpt from my book, about that ride, Playing in Traffic: … [Read more...] about Pursued by the Peterbilt
PROBLEM: You just picked up a shiny new gravel or all-road bike, but you don't know where to ride it yet. How do you find gravel roads that are within a reasonable distance from your home? SOLUTION: Turns out that there are several different options to easily find nearby gravel roads and routes. Here are some that you might find helpful. … [Read more...] about Quick Tip: Find Nearby Roads for Your Next Gravel Riding Adventure
By Coach John Hughes In last week’s newsletter Dr. Mirkin wrote an informative column Tips for Keeping Your Maximum Heart Rate Up As You Age. He’s correct that the formula of (220 – your age) is a wildly inaccurate way to determine your maximum heart rate. However, your max heart rate – even if determined with a heart rate monitor by riding all out – is … [Read more...] about Older Riders: Why Max Heart Rate Is Irrelevant
by Gabe Mirkin, M.D. The best way to achieve a high level of fitness without injuring yourself is to listen to your body. Don’t depend on heart rate monitors, fitness trackers or other gadgets. The most sophisticated fitness tracker and injury-avoider is your brain. Training to achieve a high level of fitness and to prevent diseases usually involves intense exercise, and … [Read more...] about Listen to Your Body
by Alan Bragman Question: It appears that I have a pinched nerve in my neck, probably between C6-C7 (according to my retired neuro nurse wife.) Sometimes the pain is really strong, radiating down my left arm and/or near my left scapula. I'm hoping this is not from riding! Obviously, when in the drops I am bending my neck back in order to see, which on most … [Read more...] about Dealing with a Pinched Neck Nerve
By Coach John Hughes My longtime friend John Lee Ellis, age 67, completed his sixth Paris-Brest-Paris (PBP) this summer. PBP is a 750-mile (1200 km) continuous ride from the outskirts of Paris to Brest and back, which must be completed in 90 hours or less. The 90 hours includes all stops for rest stops, meals, sleep, mechanicals, etc. Ellis finished in 83 hours 9 … [Read more...] about Setting Goals as You Grow Older
By Fred Matheny Unless you live in temperate climes where winter means slipping on a sweater in the cool of the evening, you probably equate off-season training with cold weather. Sure, you can retreat to the trainer and Zwift or the weight room to escape the arctic blasts. But what fun is that? Cycling is an outdoor sport. Even at its January worst, cold weather … [Read more...] about Bicycling in the Winter: Whipping Cold Weather
by Richard Ellin, MD, FACP Question: I'm a 37-year-old cyclist. Next year will hopefully be my 3rd year of cycling. I'm contacting you today to seek help with a saddle issue that is threatening to remove me from the sport. And the thought of not being able to ride my bike is heartbreaking. … [Read more...] about How to Deal with Chronic Anal Fissures
by Joshua Cohen PT, MS Question: Several years ago an article was written proclaiming that there are only 2 kinds of cyclist, those who have ED and those who will, and that cycling is the absolute worst thing a man can do if he wants to maintain sexual function. Should ED be a legitimate concern for cyclists? If so, how best can it be prevented, and can it be corrected … [Read more...] about Is Erectile Dysfunction Inevitable Among Cyclists?
by Richard Stephens, MD Question: I had prostate cancer surgery 20 months ago, and have had continuing problems with incontinence. I turn 70 this June. My urologist says the best option for my individual situation (and I agree) is to have an artificial urinary sphincter implanted. He also said I will never be able to ride long distances again (I don’t want to agree). Rides … [Read more...] about Riding After Prostate Cancer Surgery
QUESTION: I fractured two pelvic bones in a bike crash a few weeks ago and I have been told that the bones are stable and should heal without surgery. I am currently partial weight bearing and starting to do some physical therapy. I am wondering if the scar tissue from this fracture will strengthen the affected bones, or will I be more susceptible to future … [Read more...] about Two Pelvic Bones Broken Cycling. Will They Heal Properly and be just as Strong as Before?
By Coach John Hughes Question: “I understand that interval training of one type or another is the best method to improve performance. However, I am coming off an extended six month period of minimal riding. Is there some level of base miles I should do before I start doing intervals?” RBR Reader Richard Z. … [Read more...] about How Many Base Miles Before Intensity Training?