Slow twitch and fast twitch muscle fibres make energy in different ways
Muscles that contain a lot of slow twitch fibres are red, because they contain lots of blood vessels. Slow twitch muscle fibres rely on a rich supply of oxygenated blood as they use oxygen to produce energy for muscle contraction.
Fast twitch muscle fibres don't use oxygen to make energy, so they don't need such a rich blood supply. This is why fast twitch muscles are lighter in colour than muscles that contain a lot of slow twitch muscle fibres.
Fast twitch muscle fibres can produce small amounts of energy very quickly whereas slow twitch muscles can produce large amounts of energy slowly.
best ways of improving ride/distance stamina for a noobie?
tinribz, your 2nd quote says something quite different from your first
the fast twice muscles are anaerobic, producing lactic acid which is subsequently combined with oxygen to produce C02
"My interval training involves a fairly non-technical but enjoyable descent half way round my training loop. It takes 30 seconds to ride down, a couple of minutes back up, I start at the bottom, sprint up, then freewheel back down, repeat 10 times, puke, then carry on the loop."
Yup, this is how to make interval training not-boring. Done this way, it's not training, it's "sessioning". Yo. On the rare occasions I can be bothered to actually do anything on the bike that isn't just riding, I do the same- climb and drop, climb and drop, on a bit of trail that's interesting enough that doing it 10 times is worth doing in its own right.
For us slackers, the only way to train is to pretend you're not training
went from downhill rider/racer who couldnt ride 10 miles on the road period to XC endurance rider in 2 years.
number 1 for my endurance was singlespeed - you dont freewheel so pretty constant motion for the legs....anything flat becomes an interval session if you want any speed ...anything uphill becomes an interval session if you dont want to walk
Number 2 was ride with a group of riders who are faster than you - im luckier than most ive got a race orientated club local with a wide spectrum of abilitys. Pick the slowest and aim to stay with him - once you can do that pick another to stay with till you make your way to the front then start taking a singlespeed out with them and repeat. (may not work if your local club has oli beckinsale or liam killeen in it ! )
number 3 Diet and nutrition. Its amaizing the difference eating nutritionally good stuff like fruit / veg / whole wheats makes against eating highly processed crap and white bread/pasta etc and staying well hydrated all the time to aid recovery.
"Ride lots." — Eddy Merckx
I've never won the Tour de France and I never will, but I can improve on this advice I think.
"Ride Lots, and take some sandwiches with you or you'll be peckish" - Shoefiti.
Maybe not as catchy?
Also remember that east Anglia might be flat, but the wind is a killer - all those that turn their nose up at riding around there saying it is so easy, might be surprised how bloody windy it can be, and this has a massive effect (on me anyway) on how far I can ride without feeling knackered.
odannyboy - yeah I'm 'local' I ride with CamMTB a few times a year - would ride more often but I struggle to get to the meetup point in time.
Knee pain can just be down to seat height, pushing a too harder gear or just not being used to it.
Riding in Cambs can be a bit tame, but there are plenty of entertaining bits hidden away if you know where to look.
Try getting out for more than one "proper" ride a week - A few years ago I was a bit unfit and riding with a club once a week would kill me with little appreciable gain. Doing a bit of running (1 or 2 times/week) and gettin out on the bike most weekends now, combined with a 4 mile each way gentle commute, and I'm not remotely killing myself on the weeknight rides or the weekend ones.
Also, don't push yourself to be at or near the front on rides, just ride at your own pace. There's no prizes on a social ride!
The 2 mile each way commute you do will be good to keep your legs ticking over, so keep that up.
Getting out and climbing has helped me more than anything. Friends ride fast flat cycle trails etc and trail centres in forests and there pace is quite quick but their stamina is poor. So if I can hang on to their coat tails till the next climb comes along I'm off. Hit those hills and build up your stamina, it should also help your rate of recovery!
I was interested to read about the different types of muscle - but surely the good news is that we have an inbuilt anabolic system that allocates muscle in response to the demands made without any conscious input - it evolved in relatively mindless animals, so if you do what you want to do the muscles will develop to do it better. Result! :o)
""so if you do what you want to do the muscles will develop to do it better. Result! :o) ""
Indeed - but it's best to play to your genetic disposition, that way results are easier to come by!
but it's best to play to your genetic disposition
I have no idea what that is, unless it's just to have fun riding :o)
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