Dr. Carlo Guardascione, the Team Lampre-Farnese Vini physician, speaks about the winter break.
- During the post-season break is it better to completely stop activity?
"It would be better to rest completely for 15-20 days. Then, it's good to start activities in a gradual way: before cycling it could be useful to swim, run or to go to the gym".
- The winter break is always linked to a weight gain: how many kilos can a cyclist add to his weight?
"It depends on the different bodies of the athletes and on other factors. A limit for a pro cyclist is 5% of his normal weight: so, an athlete, that is usually 70 kg, needs to pay attention to not exceed 73,5 kg".
- Do the cyclists suffer from the same winter illnesses that affect all other people or do they suffer from peculiar infections?
"No peculiar illnesses; the athletes have to face, as do non-athletes, illnesses of the winter months. These include those caused by flu viruses and by gastrointestinal viruses. The only peculiarities for cyclists are the problem of the sudden change of temperature due to taking vacation in warm places: when they come back to their own country they're target for colds".
- Which kind of precautions does a pro cyclist take in order to avoid illnessess during winter?
"Every year the medical staff from Team Lampre suggest to the riders an anti-flu vaccination and immunostimulant therapy".
- Could winter be the proper time for addressing some medical problems?
"Of course, the winter pause could be the proper time for taking care of dental problems, sinusitis, pharyngitis and problems linked to the posture".
- What suggestion to you have for cyclists that restart cycling is in this wet period?
"It's very important to wrap up in a proper way, because during training you breath cold air that could cause colds".
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