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Legs really ache after mid ride stop

surfercyclistsurfercyclist Posts: 891
Today I did a 52 mile ride, plenty of climbing but par for course around here. Anyway, mid ride I stopped for a coffee and phone the Mrs. Upon resuming ride my legs were killing me, really aching and didn't subside for rest of ride. Now I assume this must be lactic acid build up but it is something that occurs every time I do this so I was wondering if anyone had any tips for eleviating the ache (other than don't stop). If I ride and don't stop then no problem but it seems to be if I have a mid ride break upon resumption I really suffer.
Any sensible tips gratefully received.


  • From my somewhat limited knowledge of physiology I don't think it is necessarily just lactic build up also the enzymes which restore carbohydrate to the muscles start working once you stop exercising, basically putting your body back into recovery mode. Once you start again that same carbohydrate is then needed to help you pedal which confuses the body. I think this plays a big part in why you (most of us!) have heavy legs, you have basically caused a metabolic imbalance.

    Yes, not stopping is the best prevention but if you do, try not to stop for longer than 20mins as it is at this point for most when recovery kicks in. If you are already only stopping for a few mins and getting this problem not too sure what to suggest I'm afraid!
  • MishMash95MishMash95 Posts: 104
    Ahh the ol' caffed legs (no idea how its actually spelled) :P Whilst I would say I don't get it really bad, my legs do always tend to feel heavy and sluggish after a stop, however I find that starting off very easy is the best approach here. I tend to find that if I go hard right after a stop, it is a similar experience to going hard without a proper warmup and the legs just get a bit mashed.
    I guess another thing you could do is just move around a little more when stopped, whether this jiggling your legs a bit whilst sat down, or pacing around if standing, rather than just staying still.
  • zefszefs Posts: 484
    It depends on fitness, nutrition/daily stresses and your bike fit. We don't have any information on those.
    It could be that you are not used to that kind of climbing, haven't fueled enough or your bike fit is off and your muscles get tight/not able to relax.
  • trekvettrekvet Posts: 219
    Before the stop slow down and spin in a lower gear may help.
    The Wife complained for months about the empty pot of bike oil on the hall stand; so I replaced it with a full one.
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    Are you not used to the effort maybe ? Thats the only time my legs ache.
  • surfercyclistsurfercyclist Posts: 891
    fenix wrote:
    Are you not used to the effort maybe ? Thats the only time my legs ache.

    Used to effort, ride regularly and up lots of hills(I live near the Preseli hills in Pembs). It seems to only happen if I stop for around 20 minutes or so(coffee stop etc). Even if I take it really easy upon resuming ride my legs ache quite a lot. When this happened the other day, it was a warm sunny afternoon and I sat in sun drinking said caffeinated beverage so legs getting cold not an issue.

    As for bike fit, not had done "professionally" but I have no issues riding etc.

    I think it can only be a lactic acid build up and then the muscles getting cool(er). Anyway, looks like I either put up with it or don't stop mid ride. If I stop for a short period, eg for a pee then no problem it's seems to be only for a longer period of around 20 mins.

    I'll also mention I don't usually stop mid ride, only if I do a ride of 50 miles or so. Anything under this I'll just keep going and don't have an issue. So if I do say 40 miles non stop no problem but if I stop after say 25 miles then resume my legs ache.
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