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One of the joys of a hard day in the saddle is that warm, satisfied internal glow you feel in the aftermath of your ride. It amplifies the sense of achievement you get from climbing or descending a mountain, finishing a race, completing a sportive or reaching a training target. There are times after a ride where I feel immensely euphoric and talking with friends, enjoying a cold beer and listening to music is better than ever. Surely this isn’t just because of the Rapha Bib Shorts I’m wearing?
Endorphins are endogenous opioid polypeptide compounds. Eric Simon, who discovered opioid receptors in the brain, created the term by abbreviating ‘endogenous morphine’, which implies ‘a morphine-like substance originating from within the body.’ They are produced by the pituitary gland and the hypothalamus in the spine (which links the brain to the central nervous system) during exercise and they resemble opiates as they produce a natural anaesthetic and sense of well-being.
Endorphins allow humans to feel in control allowing them to persist with physical activity over long periods. However, it is not proven that moving the body across a pain threshold (such as climbing a mountain or sprinting for the line during a criterium) is the only trigger for the release of endorphins. It is suggested that endorphins are some of the many chemicals that contribute to the high cyclist’s receive after a hard ride; other chemicals include adrenaline, serotonin, and dopamine. Time for a ride in the autumn sunshine.
- RT @rapha_n_america: Up Close: The Rapha x Raeburn Fall-Winter Collection via @selectism :: http://t.co/O27Eo9pQGK
- What do you get the cyclist who has everything? Here's what we recommend for the dandy in your life. → http://t.co/ciPREr3fnP
- RT @racefietsblog: Leuk, de Alpe d' Quiz van @RaphaRacing is begonnen! 3 weken elke dag een andere prijs http://t.co/QiWhfY8hXy @rapha_euro…
- The @rapharacing #festive500 is back. Once again we challenge riders worldwide to clock 500km between 24-31 Dec. → http://t.co/HmgDlUJTiI
- RT @RaphaCycleClub: NYC: Analog to digital conversion. #oneoftheseplease #Festive500 http://t.co/f2rQd3Lv6g
- RT @roadcc: Rapha Alpe d’Quiz starts today with prizes to be won @rapharacing #cycling | road.cc http://t.co/tTdEEWjf8k
- RT @RaphaCycleClub: LDN: great to have @DanMartin86 as guest barista in the club this afternoon. http://t.co/IeCC0HKuKr
- Part Two from @RigoZimmerman's series, ‘The Winter’ is now available to read → http://t.co/GIl5Kj9Sfy • Part One → http://t.co/8IclbHCHcc
- As teased at the weekend, Rapha is pleased to welcome the return of Alpe d’Quiz, three weeks of… http://t.co/od3pWXomm9
- The 2013 edition of Alpe d’Quiz is now underway. For a chance to win a Rapha Backpack + Rain Cover, enter here → http://t.co/3n8XlqiNYq