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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I found out this week that I have shingles. For those that don't know, it's the second coming of the chicken pox virus. I don't know if it is the virus or the meds (acyclovir) that are making me feel like such poo. I have ZERO energy with headaches and general malaise along with a painful rash on my abdomen. I tried to muster some intervals on the trainer yesterday, but the best I could do was a 10 minute easy spin.

I'm trying to build up to some sportif type events later in the summer. I have been training 6 days a week for a few months, with intervals 2x a week, strength training 2x a week, and 3-4 hr rides 2x a week.

How long will it be before I am starting from scratch again? What should I do in the meantime?

It's time like these that make you realize how much cycling is a part of your life. It's almost as if I am going through withdrawals!

Thanks ahead of time for the help. :)
 

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Hey Tyro,
I understand your predicament. Getting sick and missing training SUCKS!!!
I recently had the flu and couldn't ride for five days. When I got back on the bike, I felt terrible, my heart rate was so high, it would sky rocket and my legs would burn from just standing up to pedal. It was really hard because I really was worried about losing fitness. Being really tired on the bike lasted just three or four days, so those were pretty much just easy. I think I felt so bad because I had just been sick, but also because i was on antibiotics and those really take it out of you.
The good news is that now (two weeks after getting over the sick) I am mostly back on track. Right now I feel as if I am picking up where I left off. So, I don't think I lost fitness, but it did take me two weeks of mostly low-intensity to get over feeling so tired when riding.
You will probably not be able to ride for much longer than five days as you have a much more serious illness. Everyone on this board has their own opinion about how long you can take off without losing a significant amount of fitness, about ten days is a common answer. I think that's about right too.
Hopefully you know better than to try and come back before you are ready. Don't make it last longer than it should!
Also, how long have you been training like this? If you are new to training, the volume and intensity that you are doing may have been a tad too much and you are a little overtrained. If thats the case, the time away from riding will actually help you! You'll come back stronger.
Get well soon!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks kreuzberg.

I've been training regularly since December. Before that I just logged a bunch of "junk" miles, or rather riding aimlessly with no real structure. I did get a bit overtrained at one point. I backed off a bit and then brought it slowly back up to that intensity. It has been 4 days off the bike now, but I am hoping to be back at some kind of training by mid next week. I just feel ZAPPED.

I'll take your advice and ramp back up slowly. That sounds like a good idea. My wife keeps reminding me that I am not a pro and that I don't get paid to ride. You are right. I should take it easy and heal up and not start back too early.
 

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the worst thing you can do is try to keep training right through the sickness, you will not only slow down your recovery from the sickness, but your body doesn't want all the extra stress it already has.
 

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Tyro I feel for you. Crazy auto immune sicknesses are the worst for sure.

If you have been training hard, your base will last about 4-5 days. After that, each day that goes by, you will lose 4-6% of your base. I know. That's super depressing to hear.

One thing you CAN do during your illness. Is to do Yoga. Yoga is a strange phenomenon. Not only does it work you mentally, but it also will help you stay limber and massage the connective tissue as you do it. These two things, in recent studies conducted at the Olympic Training Center, have helped Elite Athletes who come down with Mono and other types of long term illness stay in the game. Don't get down. Stay positive, keep eating clean meals and do so often to maintain your metabolic rate. These little adjustments will help you to get back on track sooner than later when this illness blows by.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
master2129 said:
Tyro I feel for you. Crazy auto immune sicknesses are the worst for sure.

If you have been training hard, your base will last about 4-5 days. After that, each day that goes by, you will lose 4-6% of your base. I know. That's super depressing to hear.

One thing you CAN do during your illness. Is to do Yoga. Yoga is a strange phenomenon. Not only does it work you mentally, but it also will help you stay limber and massage the connective tissue as you do it. These two things, in recent studies conducted at the Olympic Training Center, have helped Elite Athletes who come down with Mono and other types of long term illness stay in the game. Don't get down. Stay positive, keep eating clean meals and do so often to maintain your metabolic rate. These little adjustments will help you to get back on track sooner than later when this illness blows by.
Thanks master. Wow! That's a bummer for sure, but I'll have to deal with it. When my body is 100% healed, I'm just going to have to punish it for letting me down!!! 10x20's!!! :mad: :p

I'll take your advice on the yoga. I have a nice routine that I do on my days off. I'll start doing that in the meantime. I have been trying to stay positive and I'm eating right and drinking lots of fluids.

Hopefully this thing won't last that much longer. (fingers crossed) :)
 

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I was just getting over a really, really bad cold a couple weeks ago and went on my first two rides of the season. The first was 25 miles with some big climbs. The next day was 40 miles "race to the stop ahead sign" style. These wouldn't have been anything special normally, but I was completely toasted for a few days afterward. I should have eased into it more slowly.

I don't know how much fitness you'll lose, but trying to get it back all at once is going to do more harm than good. Take it easy and give your body a break. You've got all summer. Kreuzberg is right on.
 

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If there are no long term side effects, you will lose nothing at all even after a week, nor will your base (whatever that may be) drop by 4%+. Take time off and you'll be back. I occassionally take week long business trips then come home and race that weekend...
 

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Do you want the good news or the bad news first?

OK the bad - You may want to google shingles - there is no true timeline for a cure - with some people it lasts 3 - 4 weeks with others it doesn't go away.

The Good - I have a good friend you got shingles in mid February - as of a bout a week ago, he is completely over them. He was given antibiotics which stunted the spread of the disease - then his body had to take care of the rest. He was able to manage very mild excercise after 3 - 4 weeks but nothing strenuous.

Good Luck - stay well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I'm hoping that I got to these early enough to knock it back and not get a full blown case. I'm not sure whether it is the virus or the meds that are making me feel like such crap. I figure it is a combination of he two. I'm feeling a wee bit better today than I was yesterday. I talked to a riding buddy of mine who said his wife had them last year. It sprang up during a time of heavy stress, much like what I have been going through at work as of late. I'll just have to get through this round and hope for the best.

Thanks for the help everyone. I'm just going to do some healing and then get back on the bike when I'm ready, but not too soon.
 

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function said:
If there are no long term side effects, you will lose nothing at all even after a week, nor will your base (whatever that may be) drop by 4%+. Take time off and you'll be back. I occassionally take week long business trips then come home and race that weekend...
Good advice. :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
To give this thread some closure...

I rode after 7 days completely off. I was feeling better, but still not 100%. I caught a cold in the time off too, so that didn't help. I am on vacation in Hawaii and I rode to the top of Haleakala one day and one day I rode to Hana. If anything I felt stronger than if I had been training the whole time. Both days I felt great on the bike. I usually taper a day or two before some kind of intense ride or race, but in this case 7 days was fine.

Thanks for the help everyone. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
whitley19 said:
Hi!:)

I'm sure this question has been asked before but it has never applied to me until now. In one more week I will be having a type of surgery that will force me to take 4-6 weeks off from ANY sort of exercise. I am used to juggling training along the lines of running, cycling, bootcamp, less mills gym classes etc. I feel like I've worked my butt off to get to where I am now - I feel stronger than ever. Obviously it'll be tough to start all over again but will I be back to square 1 in terms of fitness after 6 weeks off? Surely it can't be the same as starting as a true beginner to exercise.

I don't know what terrifies me more...losing fitness or gaining weight due to being sedentary, frustrated and bored...

Any thoughts?
I know what you are talking about. It gives you a certain level of anxiety to think of all the hard work that you have put into your training to get to a high level of fitness. I, however, do not think that everything will be lost. I remember reading that the human body "remembers" being at a high level of fitness.

I think it may have more to do with the person knowing what they have to do to get back. I would compare it to a road trip. The way back always seems quicker because you recognize the landmarks you saw on the way there. The brain can compartmentalize the various stages of a trip, or in this case training. I guess what I am saying is that I do not think it will be nearly as challenging mentally. You've been there and you'll find your way back.

As you can tell, I'm kind of talking out of my arse. I thought that my fitness would be diminished after a week off the bike. I was surprised to find that, if anything, it actually improved with the rest. On a more somber note, I am now sick with a nasty sinus infection after my return from Hawaii...probably due to the ubiquitous "airport cold". I've taken another few days off on doctors orders.

To quote Arnold, "I'll be bock".
 

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I've been off for a little over a week and I can feel the difference. I've had a nasty ass cough I need to see the doc about. I walked into this chain-smokers house and have been coughing like this ever since. first couple nights were sleepless. I can barely ride now for some reason. once I get moving I cough every few miles.

****ing chain-smokers. no wonder they were on 17 different medications, I would be too if I smoked 2 packs a day.
 

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FWIW, it's easier to get back to (near) where you were in fitness after a long hiatus than it is getting to a certain level of fitness from being a couch potato from the beginning.

You don't exactly lose those extra capillaries that run to your muscles, which is why it is easier to return. So, it for sure won't take you years to get back to where you were, previously. But, starting from where you are at, don't expect to have any extra fitness compared to that couch potato...at first.
 

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I've been off the bike for about 2.5 weeks because of a deep bruise sustained to my quad. I'm still not training hard. Yesterday, went out for a two hour ride with some teammates and even pedaling kinda one-legged to spare my recovering leg, I was still putting out great power despite my only rides since I hurt myself were two 20 minute spins at 100 watts.

If you take some serious time off, you might need to reprioritize your season, but don't think you can't quickly get back to where you were.
 
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