Maltodextrin As A Source Of Workout Energy

While we focus mostly on helping our local riders find the best bike paths and engage with local cycling clubs, I do like to take some time now and then to discuss broader topics such as how to protect yourself from injury and, today, looking at energy sources.

Contrary to popular belief, maltodextrin and the malt used in beer and malted milk are very different. Typical malts are made of barley and wheat, while maltodextrin is actually more of a corn or rice sugar starch product. Sometimes it’s even made from potatoes.

So why is it hitting the shelves as a fitness supplement if it’s nothing but sugary starches?

The reason is that it causes a very fast insulin spike response, which is supposed to help amino acid absorption. So maltodextrin is added to post workout shakes to get a faster and more effective gain from the workout.

Does it work? That depends. Apparently, it almost entirely depends on whether or not you are working out in a fasting mode. If you do your workout in a fast, then your post workout shake needs to do a lot of work in a little bit of time. But if you are consuming enough proteins for optimal gains before and after the workout, then the prolonged sugar highs from adding carbs like maltodextrin to your routine can encourage health issues like hypertension.

But high glycemic index foods are known to aid in recovery and reduce muscle break down in a post workout phase, making it a solid option for carving up your post workout protein.

Another common use for maltodextrin is the energy gel used by cyclists and endurance runners. With the combination of fast and slow absorption sugars, the fitness industry has been able to create a carb pack that gives an extended energy burn. It’s proven to be massively effective in distance runners and is one of our personal favorites for cycling. My personal go to is the Clif gel shots, that use organic maltodextrin.

But watch out. Using maltodextrin in any extended pattern can suppress healthy gut probiotics and bacteria that have been linked to autoimmune disorders.

You don’t want this stuff to be a daily habit, even though occasional ingestion has not been shown to have negative effects.

 

 

Local Bike Clubs Near Wichita

Outside of our local bike shops, our local cycling clubs are what make cycling happen. Cycling communities are strongest when they can get together and share their sport with others who love the same thing they do. We’ve had multiple marriages come out of our riding community. And, why not? Relationships that share the sport can share so much more in life.

Our local riding clubs also gives us a platform for cycling advocacy. This blog does a little bit of that, but it is our local people who can show up en masse to city council and who can write in to the local newspaper who make a difference in our cycling community.

So let your voice be heard! Join a club and find yourself surrounded by a group of amazing, supportive people.

The Best SPD Flip-Flops

An SPD cleat is a cycling shoe with a two bolt clip system that allows you to clip to your bike pedal and deliver more power to the pedals with your foot.

The biggest problem with SPD clips is that you can’t walk on them. Because they are optimized for endurance and distance cycling, it is assumed that the wearer will be changing into their cleats to ride a long distance and then out of their cleats at the end of the trail.

For that reason, SPD clips probably aren’t the greatest for someone who has a short commute or who is riding deliveries. The on and off in the cleats would be tiring at best, and make your job much more difficult.

But if you want to commute say, 10 or 15 miles to and from school or work, the added advantage of the energy efficiency is worth throwing a second pair of shoes into your backpack and changing when you arrive.

For that scenario, you may want to consider a SPD compatible sandal for attaching your cleats too. The reason being that they can be an all season shoe for you when coupled with socks (Not noticeable in a black sandal with black socks) for cool weather, the sandal by itself for hot days, and a waterproof cover with insulated socks for cold weather.

It is ideal, of course, to have a pair of closed shoes for winter and a pair of cycling sandals for summer, but if you have to choose just one, then I would go with the option that meets your climate.

If you’re only likely to need waterproof boot covers and socks for a few select days of the year and live somewhere where the thought of wearing shoes and socks for daily commute is suffocating, I will go with a sandal. This will make you more likely to get that bike out, even on the hottest days of summer.

Conversely, if you live in a climate with a lot of rain and cool weather, I wouldn’t bother with the sandal. The couple of times a year that you would wish for the circulation for your feet wouldn’t be worth the trouble of always having to round up all the appropriate layers to make your footwear useful.

Riding A Bike Around Wichita Kansas

Here is a small vlog by a local Whichitian who wanted to capture themselves riding around Wichita. (Quick reminder to Vloggers:safety comes first, the Vlog comes second!)

There are a couple of good angles of bike paths and some of the views you might see. Extremely short watch.

I would recommend running your bike by your local bike shop to get a better bike fit. Our poor vlogging friend would likely be more comfortable if his seat was a little bit higher, and that is something any shop will likely help with for not cost.

Tour Wichita Bike Paths

I found this incredible Youtube video that offers a fun overview of some of the riding opportunities in the Wichita area.

This was done back in 2015, and we’ve seen even more lanes developed since then.

Wichita has beautiful lanes that showcase the best aspects of our city. Frankly, tourists who want the best views of our city should really take advantage of local bike rentals and enjoy these paths.

Bike Rental In Wichita

We are all about encouraging more people to get out enjoy our parks and world-class bicycle paths. We think that locals need to take more advantage of the incredible opportunities.

For tourists, there is no better way to experience Wichita than by bicycle.

Hopefully, you guys will be as blown away by our recreation opportunities as we are and you can take some of these ideas back to your own cities.

Here are some addresses and websites of local bicycle rental locations in Wichita. I hope this gets you started!!

Enjoy our city!

 

 

Rogue Bike Lanes in Spokane

Metro Wichita – Rogue Bike lanes In Spokane Indicate Underground Cyclist Uprising

It was just this spring that we had a row of toilet plungers show up as barriers to guard a bike lane from the motor vehicles. Wrapped in reflective tape, they were replaced by the city with actual barrier posts within a few weeks. (

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We were all impressed with the good humor of the city in meeting the wishes of our cycling community and providing that light weight safety barrier where requested.

We also saw a similar situation happen in Omaha, where plungers were used, but the city wasn’t quite as amused. The plungers were gone within 4 hours. It seems their city wasn’t as open to suggestions as Wichita has proven to be.

That leads us to the current story of spray painted bike lanes in Spokane, WA. City officials there weren’t too concerned with the addition of the unofficial lane, since it is in an area that used to be marked as a lane. They are open to replacing the markings but feel that they have some safer options available.

Which brings us to the point of how grateful I am for Wichita City Officials’ willingness to hear their people in good humor. Since our own little plunger incident, we’ve seen the city step up more than ever to protect the cycling community.

With the expansion of dedicated bicycle routes through the city growing to nearly 100 miles, the influx of daily bicycle commuters and recreational riders means that the new focus on cyclist safety is a must.

If you are wondering what to do about all the new road markings and signs and how to drive around the multitude of cyclists that are utilizing the roads, check out this video that the City of Wichita produced to educate drivers and cyclists on cyclings laws and road markings.

The Best Baggy Road Cycling Shorts

Wanting to jump on board with the bicycle commuting community here in Wichita, but aren’t exactly ready to pour yourself into spandex riding gear?

Have no fear! There are casual, relaxed fit cycling clothes available!

It’s very easy to underestimate the power of cycling clothes as an enabler in cycling mindsets. If you’ve never regularly ridden multiple miles day after day, you probably haven’t experienced some of the aches and pains that come with the process.

Padding and a close fitting protective layer prevent things that you don’t even want to think about. Like thigh chafing from hell, and the worst saddle sores you can imagine.

That’s why urban riding shorts are a thing. Perfect for delivery riders or daily commuters, they offer some of the comforts of distance riding gear with the look of everyday clothes.

Something like the Endura Hummvee short, which looks like regular cargos but is lined and has built in padding, can be the perfect option for someone wanting to spend an hour or two per day on their bike but doesn’t want to look like a not-quite-pro cyclist.

There are a lot of fun styles and colors of urban cycling shorts. While the bulk of them look purely athletic, you can find options like the Club Ride Eden women’s shorts that have no seat pad built in so that they fit and look cute, but have a seamless gusset so that there’s no crotch seam between you and your bike seat. While this offers less added comfort, it does mean you can take your bike to hang out with your friends without worrying about seams causing massive discomfort.

Some of these options are fairly expensive, and may seem ridiculous for a simple pair of short. But with cycling, you will find that you are more than happy to rotate a few key pieces from laundry day to laundry day because comfort and function take over as the prominent drives in your wardrobe choices.

How To Stop Brakes From Dragging And Sticking

As our cycling community expands, our bike routes improve, and our bicycle commuting population grows, we want to try to improve your every day riding experience with helpful tips from time to time!

Today we want to give a little walk through on what to do when your brakes are sticking on your bike.

Because going to slow down and having your brakes continue to drag against your wheel after you’ve released them can be as dangerous as it is irritating.

So, a simple guide to helping your brakes release:

1. Check To See If Your Brake Pads Are Too Worn Out

You need more than 1/4″ thickness in your brake pads for them to operate properly. If they are worn past that point then you are going to need to replace them.

2. Lubricate Your Handlebar Brake Lever
Sometimes the sticking is caused by the lever control, not by the brake itself. Use a bike lubricant to oil the pivot points in the lever, but not the brake itself.

3. Clean The Brakes and Tire Rims
If there’s a lot of grime and dirt in the brake pads and tire rims then they aren’t going to work well. Take some time to clean them thoroughly, disassembling them if you know how so that you can reach the interior areas.

4. Adjust Your Brake Cables
If your cycle has adjustment barrels on the cables then there are no tools needed to change the tension from the lever to the brake. A simple twist can tighten the cable enough to get the brakes to return to their correct position when you release your brake lever.

If these simple little maintenance tips don’t help, ask around and see if any of your friends have any bike mechanic skills. With our up and coming community of cyclists, it’s more likely than you would expect that a friend could help you tune up your ride. If not, a quick stop at one of our many local shops should get your rolling again in no time!

The Importance of Taking Care of Your Achilles Tendon When Riding


The long band of tissue which runs down the of our calf connecting to the bone of the heel is called the Achilles tendon.There are various exercises, especially running that can cause it to become damaged or stressed. Overuse of the calves is what typically provokes Achilles tendinitis, this can occur from cycling, however high-impact activities are what more commonly brings it on.

Consequences

By building the surrounding muscles that can support the tissue, cycling can be beneficial to the Achilles tendon. When you get on a cycle after a log period of time has elapsed sin you have used it and ride for a long amount of time without gradually increasing strength, that is when injury or pain can occur. When riding uphill, the Achilles tendon will undergo significant stress. Pain or damage can also be caused by riding without having properly warmed up.

Equipment

According to the Endurance Corner. Achilles tendinitis can be caused to cyclists die to incorrect bike equipment. If your pedals are misaligned and your cleats do not fit properly in the foothold, excessive pressure could be being placed on the tendon. If your foot pronates due to a pedal. Or if it is pushed way forward while riding, the tendon can be strained, this can cause discomfort and pain. When you ride, cycling shoes should rock so that there is not persistent stress. Make sure that you shoes fit properly allowing the stress of pedaling to be properly spread across the entire foot.

Interference

Although you may be able to effectively build your calf muscles by cycling avoiding tendinitis while you ride, if you have been injured due to an accident or another sport, the condition can be exacerbated by cycling. Even when you are not riding, it is important to take care of your legs. It is important to have the daily habit of wearing the correct shoes you build your muscles or that allow for rest of the Achilles tendon.

According to the Stretching Institute, you should also receive enough support from cycling shoes to prevent your ankle from turning while you ride. The pressure is taken off the Achilles tendon with shoes that have a slight heel loft, they are a great choice to wear after a long run or is the tendon is feeling a bit sensitive. To continue building calf muscles in preparation for longer rides, at other times wear shoes with lower heels.

Preparation

If you do not properly prepare for a ride, cycling can take its toll on the Achilles tendon. Other than having the correct bike equipment and shoes, you should also properly stretch in preparation. Whether you are riding or not, you should stretch twice a day. Leaning with you hands against the wall while you stand around three feet away from the wall is a very effective Achilles stretching exercise. With your right knee bent, lower your body, the calf muscles in your left leg which is straight will be stretched. Without bouncing, hold the position for twenty seconds. Go back to the starting position and repeat the stretching exercise on the other leg.