By: Randy Lund
Seven years and 70 pounds ago, I decided to get into road biking after watching my daughter successfully compete on a local race team. In less than a year, I went from 245 to 175 pounds and never felt better or stronger in my life. Once I started to experience muscle cramping, I thought my racing days were compromised for good. Here’s my HOTSHOT story:
You recently raced LOTAJA Classic Road Race, can you describe the event? It’s a 206-mile bike ride that is done in one day and covers three states. The ride starts in Logan, Utah, riding through a part of Idaho and finishes in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. It is the longest one-day USAC-sanctioned bicycle race in the country. The first 110 miles is spent ascending and descending (3) mountain passes. By the time you’re finished you will have climbed over 9,000 feet on your bike. A grueling test of one’s mental stamina and physical abilities.
This course pushes muscles to the limit. Can you talk more about this? Having three major mountain climbs so close together, your muscles being taxed almost continuous. These climbs have grades 5% to 8%, with the last climb having up to a 9% grade at the top at an elevation of 7,630. After completing this, there still is 96 miles of riding to complete the course.
Do you have a typical point in a race where you often cramp? After completing the third climb, after coming down the mountain and finishing the ride into Montpelier, Idaho, my leg muscles begin cramping. Not one leg, but both. Due to the cramping, I had to slow down and try to peddle through them. From there it was a constant battle experiencing cramping off and on through the finish.
You experience muscle cramps and were desperate to find something to help you overcome the problem. How has HOTSHOT helped? I really didn’t have any prior problems with cramping on any of my training rides up to 100 miles. My first 140-mile ride was a different story. Just after doing 110 miles, I experienced severe cramping in both legs. I tried many different suggestions and remedies, but had little or no effect on them. Then I saw an advertisement in a running magazine about a great discovery of how cramping can be eliminated. I immediately purchased it hoping this would be the answer to my problem. On a 140-mile ride, I took it at the beginning and felt great. Just past 100 miles into the ride, I felt a little cramping, but nothing like I had experienced before. What I failed to do on this ride was to take it halfway through or even when I felt them coming on. Unfortunately, I only took it at the beginning and didn’t bring any with me. For doing LOTJA this year, I was prepared. Before climbing the three passes, I took HOTSHOT and did not have any cramping whatsoever! What a relief!
What’s next race-wise? As in years past and for the upcoming year, I train mainly for doing LOTAJA. This will be my sixth time riding the course. Leading up to it, besides my local training rides, I hit all the area centuries and hill climbs. I now have the confidence that cramps are a thing of the past. Thank you HOTSHOT!
MORE ON THE HOTSHOT BLOG
8 Questions with Dan Fitzgerald: Co-founder of Heartbreak Hill Running Co. and coach of the Heartbreakers.
Carbs and Protein: 7 tips for proper intake for optimal fuel.
What are TRP Channels? Read about why HOTSHOT’s specific calibration of spices are helping to make muscles resistant to cramping.