Beginner. How Often Should I Train?

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by Patryk9595, Apr 21, 2015.

  1. Patryk9595

    Patryk9595 New Member

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    Hey! I'm completely new here, and want to know how often should I train, and what's the best distance for the beginning per session? I'm 19 years old, and have an ATB bike, but plan in the future to buy something better. For now, I've thought of starting with 10 km / 3 times a week, and after like 2 weeks switch to 20km 3 times a week. For now I won't buy a better bike but think it's good for the start. Do you think that I should train more often? Or maybe longer distances?
     
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  2. An old Guy

    An old Guy Member

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    Do what feels right. No sense in setting up goals you cannot reach or that are too easy.

    When I started out, I worked on riding everyday. Then working harder or longer as I felt like it.
     
  3. Tibz1337

    Tibz1337 New Member

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    Best advice I can give you is to just get out there and ride! If you feel that your muscles are sore just take a day off, don't sweat it :)

    The ATB will treat you well for many many miles. The price doesn't mean that much when you're first starting out.
     
  4. StrawberryCat

    StrawberryCat New Member

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    Three times a week sounds like a good number to me. That's what I'm doing to improve my running. I run three times a week then walk or rest the other days. I would say, try training three times a week like you have planned and see how you feel while doing this. Maybe do it for a month before changing it up. You should always be evaluating your performance and making adjustments as you go. Don't worry about trying to be great at the beginning though. You need to just ride often and slowly increase your distance/speed/etc. as time goes on.
     
  5. dc31

    dc31 New Member

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    I'd recommend longer distances, 20 km or more once or twice a week. The important thing is not to overtrain, when muscles are extremely fatigued it takes longer to recover. For example cycling 100 km once and not being able to walk for a week instead of cycling 50 km three times.
     
  6. kylerlittle

    kylerlittle Member

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    Do it comfortably where you're not stressing your muscles so badly, it's subjective and it's up to what your body can handle, only increase time if you feel you're ready to do that because of your muscles.
     
  7. bsthebenster

    bsthebenster New Member

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    I would imagine that as long as you don't go out within 48 hours of a workout that leaves your muscles sore that you should be fine. Muscles aside though, cardio is something that you can do everyday, which why I enjoy it so much.
     
  8. Eileen100

    Eileen100 New Member

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    Everyone's personal biking journey is different and it depends on what you are training for. Is it a long distance race or something else? I think the best thing is to start slow and then gradually push yourself to do more all the while listening to your body and staying hydrated. Posture is imortant the more comfortable you are on the bike the longer you can ride. One thing is for sure, training yourself mentally is the first step.
     
  9. superbobby

    superbobby New Member

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    Learn to listen to your body. Take it one step at a time.
     
  10. Avocadogirl

    Avocadogirl New Member

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    Everyone's body is different. Everyone's goals are different. I don't know what you want. I don't know how different amounts of training will affect your body. My only advice is to get plenty of rest. Also, don't use rest as an excuse to not actually exercise, as I have done far too many times. Find your balance. There's no formula for it.
     
  11. Corzhens

    Corzhens Well-Known Member

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    From what I know, it's 10 kilometers at the start so as not to damage your muscles. But I am not a professional trainer and I am just an amateur biker giving an opinion. As per the comment of @Avocadogirl above, each one of us has a different body. Our capacities differ with our physical capabilities. Then maybe it is best to gauge your training requirement by your strength and stamina.
     
  12. carl12344

    carl12344 New Member

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    I suggest training 5 days a week, but if you feel yourself not being able to continue then take a break and continue later. Never push your self to the max while riding a bike.
     
  13. Viking55803

    Viking55803 Member

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    Endurance for cycling takes several years of consistent effort to achieve. However, cycling is not a load bearing exercise so puts very little stress on the muscles and joints. You are really training your metabolism to use oxygen more efficiently and adapt to burning fat instead of glycogen.

    Stressing muscle is necessary to trigger growth and adaptation. There are lots of books out there that go into great depth. Probably the most thorough is called the "The Cyclist's Training Bible" by Joel Friel.

    Study, get yourself a cheap heart rate monitor, measure your baseline fitness, come up with a plan and continuously test your progress.
     
  14. Totalarmordestine

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    You need to get Joe Friel's "The Cyclists Training Bible." This man has worked with a number of top cyclists and knows how to get top performance. To give you a brief answer, most cyclists rely on periodization of their training. Lance Armstong is perhaps the most well known advocate of this type of training. He focused his entire year of training so that he would peak for the Tour de France. If he performed in any other races, his intention was not necessarily to win, but to advance his fitness level. Periodization breaks the training year into blocks. In the early blocks your work outs are of increasingly longer duration but low intensity to build aerobic conditioning. (This would be the time when you are taking 6 and 7 hour rides.) As you progress through each block, workouts become progressivly more intense to build muscle strength. (This is when you start doing
    intervals ad nauseum.) When you peak, everything becomes easy, except you are expected to kick a** and take numbers during races. After your peak period, you go back to developing aerobic fitness...

    To put periodization to work, you look at your cycling year and decide what few week timeframe contains your
    most important events. Then lay out your training schedule so fitness is at a peak at that time. If you'll read this book, or check out any number of other coaching systems, you see they all operate on similar principals.
     
  15. tarverten

    tarverten New Member

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    Pro level riders do train 6-7 hours a day. Lance Armstrong was known to train even more some times. I used to race at Cat 3 level and we trained 3-4 hours a day easily. If we were doing that, I'm sure the Cat 1 racers and International circuit riders like the Discovery Team, Gerolsteiner, T-Mobile, etc. train twice that.
     
  16. blastguardgear

    blastguardgear New Member

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    Pro cyclists definitely do long hours on the bike, and slowly get faster the more they ride. They do not look at their cyclometer and ride to a particular speed so they can tell their buddies they averaged 22 mph.
    It's all about building endurance, which translates well to racing.
    The hard work comes in the races. (I race on the road and that's where I see the largest jump in my performance.)
    Otherwise, it's long and slow to moderate riding and base fitness
     
  17. BikeBikeBikeBike

    BikeBikeBikeBike Well-Known Member

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    Train as much as you can handle. This means don't ask yourself "how much can I train" but ask yourself "how much can I heal." I have lifted weights and rode 20k 5 days a week for a whole year (off a week or two here and there but not many) when I was in my late teens early 20's. But then again I worked 20 hours a week, slept 8 hours a day and had 0 stress. A young body can handle that.
    Now I work 48 hours a week of shift work and have responsibilities and am lucky if I get 6 hours a sleep a night. So I ride/train a lot less.
    So you can train more than "10 km / 3 times a week, and after like 2 weeks switch to 20km 3 times a week" IF you are getting 8 hours of rest, eating properly have have the free time. Over-training is a real thing, so it's more about finding a training/recovery balance.
     
  18. thepieeatingjay

    thepieeatingjay New Member

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    Pros ride for 6 or 7 hours a day...Some will do light weight training...Other exercises....It's a tough sport.
    Update: Yes they do OFTEN train for 6 or 7 hours a day ! You ride long hours in many of these races. You can't do it if your body isn't conditioned to ride for long periods of time. Most races do NOT last for two or three hours!
     
  19. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    Patryk, don't worry about what the pros do. Ignore this jibberish about how they train. You're just starting out and emulating any of their training stragegies will be counterproductive.

    Sounds like you're doing fine with 3 days per week for now. Don't be too eager to pile on the miles too early as that can cause a lot more harm than good. Think of this as a long term commitment. Just focus on getting in some good rides and after a few months perhaps include some interval training.

    I'm not an advocate of riding hundreds of miles per week unless a rider is fairly advanced and their races are long.
     
  20. kylerlittle

    kylerlittle Member

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    I would also add do not stress yourself in terms of time, do it like 5 days a week it's fine. Do it for at least 15 mins 5 days a week, then keep adding it.
     
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