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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    9

    "draining fluid from your legs"

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    I've heard lots of coaches and athletes use self massage and leg elevation to "drain the fluid" from their legs after a hard workout to speed recovery. What fluid are they talking about? Sorry if this is kinda a dumb question, it's just something that's been in the back of my mind for a while and it's driving me crazy not to know. Googled it and a few sites said this "fluid" was byproducts, but I'm at a loss to know what that means too!
    Anyone know
    I guess it's not *that* important to find out, but it's been bugging me.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    1,253
    Quote Originally Posted by hellostarshine View Post
    I've heard lots of coaches and athletes use self massage and leg elevation to "drain the fluid" from their legs after a hard workout to speed recovery. What fluid are they talking about?
    Most edema is an accumulation of lymph fluid, which is usually just the non-cellular component of blood. It's mostly water, with electrolytes and other organic substances in solution. Unlike the circulatory system, which is driven by the pumping heart, the lymphatic system does not have a central pump. Lymph ducts have one-way gates in them so it all eventually returns back to your trunk, but it's easy for lymphatic fluid to accumulate in the extremities due to simple forces like gravity, compression from clothing, etc.

    HTH!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Middle Earth
    Posts
    4,001
    Quote Originally Posted by Dianyla View Post
    HTH!
    ????

    HTH

    ????

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    1,055
    "Hit the Hurts"? "Hone the Hams"?

    Well, "Hope that Helps"....

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Switzerland
    Posts
    2,033
    I can hardly imagine getting fluid buildup from a medium-length workout. Long runs, maybe. I get edemas from hiking or extended shopping orgies.
    It's a little secret you didn't know about us women. We're all closet Visigoths.

    2008 Roy Hinnen O2 - Selle SMP Glider
    2009 Cube Axial WLS - Selle SMP Glider
    2007 Gary Fisher HiFi Plus - Specialized Alias

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Limbo
    Posts
    8,783
    Hide the Hennessey
    2008 Trek FX 7.2/Terry Cite X
    2009 Jamis Aurora/Brooks B-68
    2010 Trek FX 7.6 WSD/stock bontrager

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Sf Bay Area
    Posts
    457
    hellostarshine, I'm so glad you asked this question because after long riding (ie, many hours for several days), this is exactly what happens to me. Thanks very much for bringing up this subject. At least now I can begin to correct the problem.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    2,309
    For years now I've been jumping into an ice bath after my long rides/runs. My coach got me doing this, and it really does speed recovery. Since I have a pool now I just go stand in my unheated freezing cold pool. I try to stay in as long as possible, but can barely make it five minutes. It hurts. But it really helps with recovery. On the rare occasion that I don't have time to do it, I'm really sore the next day.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Switzerland
    Posts
    2,033
    *wonders if she could stand even seconds in the river before crawling home*
    It's a little secret you didn't know about us women. We're all closet Visigoths.

    2008 Roy Hinnen O2 - Selle SMP Glider
    2009 Cube Axial WLS - Selle SMP Glider
    2007 Gary Fisher HiFi Plus - Specialized Alias

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    WA State
    Posts
    2,058
    2nd the ice baths...also, I swear by my rolling pin...works great on the calves and quads.
    "The best rides are the ones where you bite off much more than you can chew, and live through it." ~ Doug Bradbury

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Limbo
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    8,783
    Muscle soreness and edema (the original query) are two entirely different matters.

    Edema is an accumulation of extracellular fluid that Dianyla referred to. It's explained in detail here.

    Soreness after exercise is due to an accumulation of lactic acid. That's when you get out the rolling pin.
    2008 Trek FX 7.2/Terry Cite X
    2009 Jamis Aurora/Brooks B-68
    2010 Trek FX 7.6 WSD/stock bontrager

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    WA State
    Posts
    2,058
    Zen, so if you are rolling toward the lymph ducts (like up the leg, and toward the groin area), doesn't that help kind of flush both lymph goo (to use a technical term) to where it needs to go, and lactic acid out of the muscles at the same time?
    "The best rides are the ones where you bite off much more than you can chew, and live through it." ~ Doug Bradbury

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Limbo
    Posts
    8,783
    That's a good question.
    I had one year of anatomy & physiology, I only know enough to get myself into trouble
    It sounds good in theory but I'm thinking maybe you'd still have to elevate your legs above your heart because if the valves/gates aren't working right you have to give them a gravity assist to open.
    2008 Trek FX 7.2/Terry Cite X
    2009 Jamis Aurora/Brooks B-68
    2010 Trek FX 7.6 WSD/stock bontrager

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    9
    Wow, thanks for the replies. That's really interesting!

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    3,079
    Next time I see people running around wtih rolling pins and talking about lymph goo, I'll know they're TE gals...

 

 

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