Question for all you biking enthusiasts. - AF Association

AF Association

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Question for all you biking enthusiasts.


Nothing to do with A.F.

My son is doing an 80 mile road race in May. He hasnt done this before. He is currently training and building up speed and distance. In the week before the race, should he rest or continue training.

I have given him all the A.F. warnings but know that you cant put an old head on young shoulders so have resolved to help with practical advice from people who do this biking thing!

Thanks in anticipation. X

10 Replies

I don't coach cycling or am I a cyclist I am a swimming coach with 20 years experience of coaching swimming and athletics (sprint coach) however all sports follow a few basic rules.

The last few weeks (2 to 4 weeks) leading up to a major competition an athlete should begin what is commonly know as a tapering period... Tapering is a phase in an athletes training programme when their training work is greatly reduced to allow the body to fully recover before a competition....the hard work under his belt.

The weeks before his race your son should greatly reduce the mileage and intensity of his training to be fully recovered for his 80 mile race.

Very good advice.

Thank you that is really helpful. I will pass the message on.

CDreamer in reply to dedeottie

My step-grandson is an elite athelete and does a weekly Vlog (video blog) on his training - he also studies sport science. He often posts about his training regime and explains why etc and also lots of tips & recipes for those training - Arthur'sOlympicCountdown on YouTube.

He does not have AF though.........

Must be difficult for you to watch.

dedeottie in reply to CDreamer

Wow Im impressed!

I will pass that on to him.

My son is 34 and had two episodes of A.F. about 10 years ago after a stagg weekend. It was investigated but of course nothing was caught on e.c.g. . He was scared and so is a lot more sensible now but I must admit that i do worry for him. I look back though and am sure that if i had been warned to stop the physical activity i loved, i probably wouldnt have either. Hindsight and all that. X

Hi, I am a runner with AF and was going to say something similar to sportscoach about tapering. The same thing applies to marathon training which is perhaps the running equivalent of a long race, reduce intensity of training the closer you get to the event. Don't stop, keep going, but don't wear yourself out and try and let all your muscles regain their full potential. Also, eat plenty of Carbohydrates in the week/few days before to get those muscles fuelled up with energy. I wish him the very best of luck. Yan

dedeottie in reply to yanbart

Thank you x

I don't race now too old now. Thing to do is ask a practitioner who cycles. Endrance cylcist and runners tend to have a higher population of AF suffers than normal. But the groups mortality ratio is much lower than normal. I have AF but most clinitians don't know this and as a result I have a credibiliy issue with them as I am 72 yo cycle 20 to 30miles and walk 6 to 7 miles with ease. Next week I am going skiing. You have one life so live it. Ther are a few cardiologist that are good, usually those who have Electrophysiology skills, the rest are olds hat.

It sounds like a Sportif or randonée thay he is dong rather than a road race. Poad races for beginners tend to be shorter and virtually all participants will be members of a cycling club who will tell him what to do. I used to time-trial rather than road race, but we did have road racers in our club. The main thing is to taper before the day and not to do too much the couple of days before the event. Assuming it is a sportif event, eat well (carboloading used to be the operative word) the day before. You need about 3 hours before starting the event on the day, an hour for breakfast, an hour to get there, an hour for fiddling about getting ready, warming up, panicing etc. Don't try to bust a gut keeping up with the leaders at the beginning, it is an easy way to cripple oneself. Make sure that the bike is in reasonable nick when you start. Tyres pumped up, wheels in properly, brakes working etc. If you can hang in with a group that is going much the same rate as you, try to keep in with them. This means that you should do your utmost to get to the top of hills with them if it hurts, however if you are feeling good don't drop them unnecessarily sine you can go much quicker in a group than you can alone. Make sure you have enough to eat and drink on the bike. Hunger knock or dehydration are not much fun. Wear a heart rate monitor and ease off if you arte going into the red.

dedeottie in reply to didunth

Thanks. All sounds good advice for him. X

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