analyse this: I keep getting dropped

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by Ade Merckx, Jun 13, 2007.

  1. Ade Merckx

    Ade Merckx New Member

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    My favourite crit is a oddly shaped 1Km circular circuit. Last year as a 3rd cat racer I won and placed highly on in quite a few races. Then my training consisted of mainly twice weekly 2 x20's plus one or two endurance rides on the weekend. This year as a 2nd cat racer I've been dropped in all three E12 races. It usually happens around the 15-20 minute mark on a 50metre drag. It appears to be my inability to recover from numerous 20 second attacks- one after the other that causes the problem and eventually I lose the wheel in front

    My technical ability on crit circuits is pretty good. I can hang in with the big boys on less technical circuits. Training wise this year I've been doing lots of 2 x20's (3 a week on average with one or two sweetspot ride at weekends) I did a block of 5 x 5 vo2max effort for eight weeks back in Feb. I don't have a powermeter (can't afford one yet) so I use the poorman's version - cyclocomputer on the back wheel when turboing. I've only raced 5 times this year. Any suggestions, its becoming quite frustrating:(
     
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  2. Spunout

    Spunout New Member

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    Stop doing 2x20s and start doing AC intervals. Try 3 sets of 6(45s, 1m15s) all out. Don't worry about power, do the intervals until you puke. You have to do speedwork.
     
  3. Bailsibub

    Bailsibub New Member

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    I second Spunout.

    You moved up to Cat 2, so the racing is faster. So you need to be working on your ability to put out the high power, which is the big difference between elite guys and the also rans.

    I'm attaching a link to a page with an indispensable interval workout. Try the standard intervals(and the crit sprints, of course). I have never used a powermeter either, so when I have done them, I just go all out. As you can see, the intervals get longer so you have to hold your speed despite the pain. And do them outside if you can. You can go much harder for some reason(and that's better).

    I think the recovery lengths can vary on how you feel, but be sure to do the work. They are hard as hell, and you will suffer more than ever. But you'll be surprised at how effective they are.

    The types of speeds Palese talks about in the page are what you can expect to be seeing when you start these. You have the base, so you can do them. I used block training(2 or 3 days of them with repetitions declining), with only these, but you could probably do them every other day (a race is definitely a workout). Long before the 20 weeks he maps out are over, you'll be flying.

    www.cyclingnews.com/fitness/?id=critspalese
     
  4. Ade Merckx

    Ade Merckx New Member

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    Thanks you guys! I'll get on the AC workouts straight away. What about VO2max intervals I haven't done them for a couple of months. Is it time to start them again as well or shall i just maintain my 'threshold power' via racing. Cheers
     
  5. Bailsibub

    Bailsibub New Member

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    Ade, focus on improving your speed at this point. If you are racing crits, you aren't really doing 'threshold' work. You are sprinting, sometimes hundreds of times in a race and holding it for up to a minute or so. Then you hit a corner and what happens? You have to brake, make the turn, and then sprint the gap shut.

    And if your a cat 2, you are probably doing 1/2 races. I feel for you brotha!

    So focus on your speed. You have to go fast to even stay in a pack like that, let alone win.
     
  6. BullGod

    BullGod New Member

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    I just moved up from 2 to elite / 1 recently, and due to work committments I am racing only crits.....which is great cos I suck at crits.

    However I worked really hard at them, and am getting better (unless there are cobblestones involved)

    I second all of the above regarding speedwork, but i also think you need to race smarter. For me that meant learning to ride on the drops, learning to corner properly, daring to ride up near the front with the local big names, and doing everything to stay near the front.

    When I first started I was nervous and trying to ride around as last wheel, on technical courses.....the accordion effect was killing me. A local ex pro told me that not even the strongest riders could hack 2 hours in the "accordion zone" on some of the insane courses round here....

    it's really simple - the nearer you are to the front, the less sprinting you need to do out of the corners. Round a tight corner the front 20 riders slow from 45km/h to 30km/h and then reaccelorate only about 10-15 km/h. If you're at the back you're down to a near standstill in the jam at the entry to the corner, and then not only do you have to sprint like a maniac back up to race speed (an all out jump of say 35 km/h) and then you have to go faster than the guys at the front in the strait to get back to them, and do all of this with larger gaps between the riders and weaker riders letting these gaps get even bigger.
     
  7. Ade Merckx

    Ade Merckx New Member

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    Hey dude you're possibly right. Last year I used to arse around at the back then burn a match and stay up front for half the race and slip to the back having attacked. To be honest I found it fairly comfortable. Now I definitley need to concentrate (not something I'm good at!) and stay in those top fifteen positions. Easy to say very hard to accomplish; believe me I've tried. I guess my thinking was if I get my threshold power up I'll be able so sit anywhere in the pack without a problem. Wrong thinking! - thanks for reminding me
     
  8. Alex Simmons

    Alex Simmons Member

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    On the contrary, a hard crit is very definitely a threshold (Coggan L4) work out (with lots of Anaerobic capacity and neuromuscular demands as you mention) but it is still primarily an aerobic event where a rider's FTP is a primary physiological marker of success. Granted, the ability to constantly repeat the NMP/AC efforts is also very important. But the higher your FTP, the less you draw upon anaerobic reserves and the more quickly you recover when you do.
     
  9. Ade Merckx

    Ade Merckx New Member

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    Cool Alex, so I've got to keep engine building -VO2max and FT. Damn I wish there was just one all encompassing work out I could do to solve the problem. FT takes time to build, VO2max perhaps I need to another solid block and all that anaerobic stuff scares me.

    There's roughly eight more crits to go in the series. If i could guarantee myself a bunch finish in the last two that would be great. I could then invite the girlfriend and my son down to watch. Oh well i'll keep plugging away. Alex I've been reading your blog, its inspirational stuff Sir! Keep that fire burning mate:)
     
  10. ives

    ives New Member

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    Hi Mate,

    I'll just add my own idea here of what's happening. Bear in mind that probably all the guys on here (including you) know far more than me about training etc. However, I do know the circuit you are talking about ;) even though I'm nowhere near racing at your level. :)

    My own naive idea is that your training has to replicate what you're doing in the race. So, that would be something along the lines of riding at threshold for an interval of time and throwing in 20-30 sec sprints every 2mins or so. This, to my mind, is essentially what you are doing in the race. I think just doing 2x20's is never going to prepare yourself for the hard sprinting and recovery after each sprint that you need.

    Just my 2 cents ... :eek:
     
  11. ric_stern/RST

    ric_stern/RST New Member

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    If you're doing hard sprinting in and out of every corner in a crit, you're not riding technically very well. You need to practice being smoother, braking less and not accelerating as hard.

    On the other hand, the recovery from such intense efforts is completely undertaken by aerobic processes such that building FTP and VO2max is the most important aspect of recovery.

    Ric
     
  12. Ade Merckx

    Ade Merckx New Member

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    Ha ha thanks Mr W. As you know its a two minute lap at E12 level with perhaps two sprints per lap. very difficult to replicate in training but hey I may give it a go. "Nowhere near my level" Ya joking right?:)
     
  13. Ade Merckx

    Ade Merckx New Member

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    Hey its my training guru, I'm not worthy:) . Hey Ric I'm talking about Crystal Palace in South London. I don't supposed you've raced there its a bit too far away from South Wales. You're spot with the accelerating too hard. Its my fear of being dropped that makes me do that. I thought I was good technically but that obviously needs to improve too. Cheers Man. How are you enjoying fatherhood by the way?:D
     
  14. ric_stern/RST

    ric_stern/RST New Member

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    Ummm... do i know you? Fatherhood is great, thanks.

    Not ridden CP, but ridden Eastway, and Goodwood (use to live on the south coast, until 4 or 5 years ago).

    ric
     
  15. Ade Merckx

    Ade Merckx New Member

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    Ha ha sorry i didn't mean to be overfamiliar. I only know you through your work on various forums. You were the first one to open my eyes to 'training scientifically' for which I'm gratefull. I often post under my real name Toks on the cyclingplus forum and I try and provide links to your work or reference you when I can. Like most others I found out about about 2 x 20's through you. Then Peeps like Dr AC, 2Lap, RDO, Alex and many others scientifically minded trainers helped to further embelish and consoildate my knowledge.:)
     
  16. ric_stern/RST

    ric_stern/RST New Member

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    No, probs. Just wasn't sure whether i actually i knew you! I have seen your name.

    ric
     
  17. Spunout

    Spunout New Member

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    Maybe a crit averages L4. A L4 workout it is not, or else you are racing very easy crits.

    Typical 1 hour crit for me has 12 minutes AC (but waay high like 900 watts), 20 minutes L5, and the rest in lower zones.
     
  18. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    Yep, but that averaging to L4 part is real important. If you just do L6 workouts but still don't have the FTP to handle the average power you'll still burn out before the end.

    I like the "hour of power" style workouts for crits. I do a variation I call "tempo with a twist" I ride tempo for as long as I can with a ten to 15 second burst every two minutes. At the end of each burst I try to get back to high tempo as soon as I can. The workout averages as L4, I recover pretty fast at high tempo so it's not brutal and the bursts end up in L6. It's very similar to the hour of power workout in Hunter and Coggan's book but a lot easier mentally.

    -Dave
     
  19. Bailsibub

    Bailsibub New Member

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    Surpising to hear someone call a crit a threshold workout....

    But I'm not surprised by the numbers you are getting in a crit Spunout. That's the kind of power that has to be put out to keep up when the pace really picks up.

    That reminds me. I was at the Clarendon Cup in 2005. Ivan Dominguez got into a 4-man break including Bobby Julich. Bobby sure can time trial...a seriously high FTP. I've seen Ivan's time trial times and he can't even get out of his own way. But guess who won on that day?
     
  20. nath1

    nath1 New Member

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    Hi Ric, so to try and nab:) some of your expertise what would you consider to be a good workout for crits? I use the indoor trainer for my preparation work for races and mainly follow the workouts on a dvd by chris carmicheal. Not because I think he has all the answers but his sessions were at least a good start to a "rounded" session. And I must admit they have done some good. But they are getting somewhat boring:rolleyes: . So what would be a good one hour indoor trainer session for crits? cheers
     
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