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I was trying to explain to my wife the benefits of warming up & the "Down side" to not, But could any of you "confirm or confuse" the issue???
She does 10-20mi. rides at an "easy" pace, But she has a "Corporate Challenge" race (10 mi.) coming up. So any help would great.
Thanks to all...
 

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if you don't need to hit 25 by the first turn, you probably don't need to warm up.
one of my best road race performances was without a warmup.
it depends on how hard you need to go, how soon. Not too hard, not too soon, it's not a big deal. and vice versa.
 

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http://www.roadcycling.com/cgi-bin/artman/exec/view.cgi/4/458

A 10 mile race will take under 30 minutes.

Think of it like this: it's like warming up a car. It's not needed, but you wont be getting as good of gas mileage and you can have damage to the engine if you don't.

Basically, it gets your body ready for the abuse you are going to give it, so you don't go from a resting heart rate and a cold body to a sub-max heart rate and heating up faster than you should.

The only time you shouldn't warm up/stretch is before powerlifting.
 

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no one really answered you.
if the "Corporate Challenge" race is what it sounds as if it is -- a chance to go out there and get a little sweaty but no one is going to kill themselves, she likely doesn't need a warm-up. If it's going to get intense, fast, then she definitely should do a warm-up.
If I don't get in at least a fifteen-twenty minute warm-up, twice that if I can, I can definitely feel the difference.
 

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to echo bill:
if its gonna be intense from the get-go, a warmup is nice cause your legs are loose and your body is ready to go out and push it. Think a crit - you come to the line slightly sweaty and ready to drop the hammer as soon as you come out of the turn, if not earlier.

if its gonna be gentle, a warmup is still neccessary, although less so. Think a road race - things start off nice and slow, you get a chance to loosen up, but you still wouldn't want to come in cold, you want to come in having loosened the legs.

In general, doing any sort of physical activity without warming up can lead to muscle and joint problems. Think about any sports you ever played, be it soccer, running, whatever, your team warmed up before games and practices....cycling is no different.
 

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Yep, if the race intensity is high early on, then a good warmup is a must. Not just crits. I did a road race last weekend that had a steep hill only 2 miles into the race. As a result there was no nice roll out, rather a fast pace to the hill, then drilling it on the hill, then going harder after the hill to take advantage of gaps. A warmup was defiinitely in order for this race.

My MO has been a slow starter and strong finisher. Believe me, I've been trying to figure out the proper warmup for a long time, and I'm still learning. In cyclocross races I often experience what I call "2nd lap blues", where I start losing ground. I'm usually able to regain form and ride the strongest in the last half of the race though. I can only conclude that my warmup just isn't sufficient.

I've tried to find out ways to quantify when I'm warmed up better. One thing I've noticed is that when I monitor my heart rate during a warmup, my "perceived effort" seems much higher at a lower heart rate when I'm still "cold". So, one way to know when I'm getting properly warmed up is when I get that heart rate up close to LT/AT and it starts feeling more like "steady state" rather than "max effort". It can really vary as to how long it takes for the warmup to get me there. Sometimes I just don't have the time, and then I'm forced to get there during the race.

The race you mention is so short such that a warmup could be really beneficial, if she really wants to go for the big win. BTW, I've also found that stretching beforehand doesn't really help. In fact it sometimes makes things worse, e.g. lower back starts stressing out sooner. It's better to warmup slowly and get the blood flowing before doing much stretching at all. I've found stretching after the race really helps though.
 

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bill said:
if you don't need to hit 25 by the first turn, you probably don't need to warm up.
one of my best road race performances was without a warmup.
it depends on how hard you need to go, how soon. Not too hard, not too soon, it's not a big deal. and vice versa.
Bill,

Ha! I rode with your mates from Coppi at Tysons (all 15 of them) and we we're doing at least that speed at the first corner..and let me tell you, warming up properly was the least of my issues in that race. The question I have is, will you blow up much sooner, or just a bit later, with a good warm up before a Masters race in District 20?! I'm fighting back this Sunday to find my ego at the Doolan -- I am now repeating 100 times a day..."don't chase the breaks, don't chase the breaks, don't chase the brakes...." Hope you are mending well!

cp
 

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Are you doing static stretching before the race?

Dynamic stretching might help out more by getting blood to the muscles and actually warming them up.



GearDaddy said:
The race you mention is so short such that a warmup could be really beneficial, if she really wants to go for the big win. BTW, I've also found that stretching beforehand doesn't really help. In fact it sometimes makes things worse, e.g. lower back starts stressing out sooner. It's better to warmup slowly and get the blood flowing before doing much stretching at all. I've found stretching after the race really helps though.
 
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