Over the last couple of months I’ve had the privilege of being a member of a lucky group of people / guinea pigs who have been testing and giving feedback on the great range of cyclist oils made by La Gazzetta Della Bici’s Simon Lamb.
Firstly, there is the red labelled Rosso Dopo Gara (Post Ride) oil. This oil is a blend of 6 essential oils including Arnica and Tea Tree oil. Arnica is a major ingredient in many anti-inflammatory products and Tea Tree oil has many beneficial properties such as being antiseptic, antibacterial, and antifungal. I’ve been using the oil after any ride that has been at least 70 miles long. If, like me, you’re a bit rubbish at stretching at home (in the gym, no problem – lots of people to show off how flexible you are in front of), then this oil will definitely help your muscles recover from any ride. Hopefully before you’ve hopped into the bath or shower, you’ll have done few basic stretches, and then after your bath/shower, you can give you legs a few more minutes t.l.c. by applying this oil. Might be my cycling style, but I find that it is my quads and hamstrings that are most tired after cycle rides so I concentrate on these two areas rubbing a little bit of oil in. What you’ll find is that you don’t need very much oil, and that it is absorbed really quickly into the skin and gets to work relaxing those muscles immediately. The Rosso ‘whiff’ is also phenomenal – spicy and warm, it has one of those ‘comforting’ smells that takes you back to being a kid. In fact, it has to be said, the nights when Rosso has been applied, I sleep like an absolute baby. So not only do your muscles benefit from the essential oils in the product, you also get a great nights sleep, which we all know is also fundamental in the recovery process. This last weekend I tried Rosso in the bath when I got back from a ride – I about a capful of oil into a really hot bath, gave it a good swirl and got in. 20 minutes later I emerged a new woman! Legs felt better, skin soft from the oil in the water, and mind totally clear. Leaves the bath tub a little greasy but it’s worth it! The sports masseuse I saw on Thursday said that hot baths/showers are really good for tired muscles as you can then massage and stretch your muscles really easily. So if you incorporate some Rosso in the bath, you’re onto a win win situation as you can self massage your legs whilst sat in the bath.
Secondly, there is the green labelled Verde Pre Gara (Pre Ride) oil. This isn’t for sale yet, but you’re all going to want it when it is! Having been personally delivered the bottle so that I could try it before leaving for Paris, I gave it a whirl Saturday morning before my ride – and I really, really liked it. In a weird way it relaxes the legs before leaving, which is how you want to start any ride anyway. The thing that you’ll notice is that it isn’t a warming embrocation product. I personally don’t mind this as (in my head) I know that the heat thing is partly psychological. From what I gather, the warming agents in pre ride products actually counter balance the actual effects of the product because what you feel in the warmth is your blood near the surface of the skin which means it takes away from where it is needed in the muscles. The most important thing is that my legs felt totally relaxed when I got on the bike. Like the Rosso oil, Verde has a lovely peppermint aroma that you actually get a little whiff of every so often when you’re on your bike, and particularly as you sit back to drink your latte at the coffee stop.
I’ll be taking both the Rosso and Verde oils to Paris. You all need to buy some too. Rosso is available at La Gazzetta della Bici for £13.99