Cannot improve sprint

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by Dave_K, Aug 24, 2008.

  1. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    That alone tells me you're probably not seeing your best numbers and it's most likely because you're trying to fit too much into each workout. Do a dedicated L6 day if you want or do the training races for the NM work, race pace, tactics and experience, but if you want to see your pure sprint power go up then do pure sprints and don't try to hold them for 20 seconds.

    During points races or crits my peak power is generally a couple hundred watts lower than what I see during a dedicated sprint session with plenty of easy recovery between jumps. It's often enough for a prime, some points or a placing but not the best numbers I see when just sprinting.

    Try some shorter sprints in the 6 to 12 second range. Warm up well before the first one, rest longer than you think you need to between them (like five or more minutes of really easy spinning) and try to put everything into those first few pedal strokes. Don't hold anything back to try to extend it, give it everything right at the start and see what happens to your 5 second numbers.

    FWIW, I'm not a big fan of trying to mix and match training levels in a given session. Save that for races and pick one thing to work on and work it hard.

    Good luck,
    -Dave
     


  2. simplyred

    simplyred New Member

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    True dat yo.

    He's the track sprint coach, not the Grand Tour coach - cut him some slack ;) :D
     
  3. RHR38

    RHR38 New Member

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    Let's say 55 kg kid cyclist who sprints standing 500 m in 38.49 does it. I'm not surprised about FL at all if you look back his role in teams he was, numero uno leadout man? Top sprinter? Usually taking things to a final sprint :D. And you probably now you get totally different results depending sprinting standing takeoffs or doing it from 20 km/h or something else.
     
  4. Alex Simmons

    Alex Simmons Member

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    True but it only goes to show that a more specific preparation for the track events (esp team pursuit) was a key factor in GB resetting the bar with the Aussies being unable to match it.

    Specificity, "and all that jazz" he says with a Chicago like whisper.:p
     
  5. Roadie_scum

    Roadie_scum New Member

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    Mmmm. If only Australian cycling treated committed, specialized athletes like Bridie O'Donnell and Phil Thaux better... once you become too political in your selections, it's all over for performance.

    Don't know how well Phil was going before Beijing but he was on the outer the whole time. And Bridie should have been there... no questions.
     
  6. simplyred

    simplyred New Member

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    I always have a hard time defending that track sprinting and pursuit are two completely different animals. Maybe not in these forums - but outside - WHOOSH!

    Back to the orig. topic - while weights can/will increase strength - it needs to be properly applied to the pedals. Even the coach admitted that weights do not completely transfer over to the bike.

    Dave_K, my personal opinion is most people are strong enough to lay down a good sprint - they just need to know HOW to get their NMP onto the tarmac. Dave and Alex are right - you have to practice sprinting shorter and faster [be specific]. ;) :D
     
  7. Alex Simmons

    Alex Simmons Member

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    Where? I hate to miss a good party. ;)
     
  8. Alex Simmons

    Alex Simmons Member

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    I have personal experience of this.

    Not that many years ago I did do leg strength work in the gym and was capable of sets of 6-10 reps of deep free squats at 2.5 times my body mass. I never sprinted any faster though (and rest of my riding was ordinary).

    YMMV
     
  9. Steve_B

    Steve_B New Member

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    That's not an adult (not that it matters).

    Aerobic training and sprinting sometimes do not go together well, as the Oz coach wrote. When Floyd was working with Allen Lim before he tested positive (that's when this figure came from), he probably wasn't doing too much sprinting practice rather, lots of aerobic work, so it's not surprising that his sprint wasn't his strong suit.

    Your original comment was that 980 W was "low for an adult person". Since you apparently don't have any data to back that up, I will simply point out that there are many adults out there (Floyd being one of them) with similar capability. It all depends upon genetics, training composition, blah, blah, blah.
     
  10. RHR38

    RHR38 New Member

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    980 for a 65 kg person (pretty small) is 15,07 w/kg. If you look from Coggans power profiling chart it's nothing special. For an average weekend warrior crit rat like 75 kg that would be 13,06 that is already quite low.

    Backup data? In 'real life' 17,07 w/kg at the first seconds of Kilo and 13,3 w/kg in first 20 seconds is good but gets you nowhere at world cup. Same with 19,6 w/kg in scratch races (sprinting from slow speed), it gives you national gold and no need even enter WC scratch races.
     
  11. Steve_B

    Steve_B New Member

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    Keep in mind that the top end of the scale is set by world-class track sprinters. So of course 13 W/kg is low compared to them.

    http://www.cyclingpeakssoftware.com/power411/profile.asp

    And that has what to do with the average Joe, the other 99.999999% of the world? How many people actually get to race the match sprint or the kilo at the WC level? My point is that many adults are down in the scales compared to the elite on the track.
     
  12. simplyred

    simplyred New Member

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    And when weekend warriors are completing their 1hr crit - I'd wager they never get close to what their peak power is. I know guys who've won Cat. 3 sprints with about 600W, because everyone else was tired...

    Dave K, don't worry about how "low" your sprint power is. Having a great sprint means nothing if you use it poorly - how many times do we see Cat. 5, Cat. 4's blow themselves up in the first 15 minutes trying to stomp one another and then suck wheel for the remaining 45?

    I still advocate practicing form and explosiveness - but I'd worry less about what the chart says. I'd focus more on getting up to 60kph consistently on the tarmac. If you can get to that speed - you're flying. Make note of what the Oz coach said about neural adaptations - that comes with practice. That being said, don't overdo L6/L7 - that's the spicy stuff that can ruin your training regimen.
     
  13. RHR38

    RHR38 New Member

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    Ok, I admit it was bit harsh.. (sorry Dave K) What I tried to say is that it's much easier for average joe to product decent w/kg for few seconds because it's mostly raw power and ability to keep bike straight. Much harder to get average joe to ride 40 km in one hour. If Dave K says he can TT well, I'm not that surprised and things can be perfectly well if he knows 'how to bring it on a line'. Tactics and everything as I said earlier.
     
  14. velomanct

    velomanct New Member

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    I think its been shown that healthy non-athletes often times have higher 5 sec power than many endurance cyclists.

    The reason being is that typical cycling, the type that 95% of cyclists do, it TEACHES you to be SLOW, it teaches you to move like a slug on the bike. That is why I myself have said on here numerous times that many roadies could greatly improve their 5 sec power if they really focused on it.

    When I'm in a fast group ride or race, I often see 800-900watts just coming out of corners (just pushing hard, not explosive, JUST to match the group), and I'm not a huge rider at 85kg. I can't imagine how hard it must be if there are guys who have to go balls-to-the-wall out of corners bc their 5 sec power is under 1000w. Maybe if they are <65kg then its possible.

    I'm not even a fast twitch athlete at all. Vertical jump is 18" at best, (although I am starting to work on it).
     
  15. Steve_B

    Steve_B New Member

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    Hmmmm. Let's put it this way: the guys I race with/against are all less than 80 kg. Most are in the 68-72 kg area.
     
  16. Adam-from-SLO

    Adam-from-SLO New Member

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    Dave,

    I'm no pro, nor am I some cycling coach, guru, etc. Take my 411 for what ever it may be worth to you:

    Why not train the brain to confuse the muscles.
    By confusing the muscles, studies have shown an increase in strength/stamina (not necessarily change in size).

    Leave for a ride not knowing for sure if your going to go for a gingerly light spin, or a hard interval sprinting session. Once warmed up, be spontanious and either let the spark ignite and rip out some knarly sprinting intervals. Or.. possibly your not feeling up to sprinting that day (lower hours sleeping, nutrition intake not up to par the last 1-2 days, ... etc, a miriad of possibilities), and go for a hour- 90 minute spin.

    When ever I ride MTB- X-country, I know its going to be a grind of a day, mentally going into the ride day (thats something I need to train my brain not to think that way, and I should go into the day thinking happy/fun thoughts of simply riding, and see what happens). On the road, I am very much in control of what I'm capable of doing day to day (not over doing it, yet after a ride coming away with a sense of having accomplished a real productive 1-2 hours in the saddle).

    The Aussie coach had some good points, but certain methodoligy cannot be applied accross the board since each athelite is composed of a different genetic/physiological make up , and there isn't one perfect(or near perfect) way to prepare for a specific type of cycling training. There are certain core/foundation principles related to cycling that aid in taking a cyclist from one level to the next . The ultimate tool, regulating weapon, is the way a cyclist goes about preparing/training, and the psychological aspect of flight or fight, ways of dealing with pain in the saddle over any given number of different terrains and circumstances.

    Work smarter .... don't work harder :)
    Sometimes having a plan isn't exactly the best thing. Maybe spending 5 hours per month on a MTB, helping to refine your bike handling skills is in order (usually this cannot hurt unless the rider crashes and does damage)?? I don't know.
     
  17. velomanct

    velomanct New Member

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    I like you're thinking Adam. I've done that a bit, just go out and do what feels right for that day.


    On the other hand, I've had some of my best sprint days when I felt like garbage with no energy during the warmup.

    Two days ago I did my best sprint this year, yet I didn't even feel all that great when I went.

    Conclusion: it's a crapshoot. As long as your legs feel at least decent, anything is possible.
     
  18. Adam-from-SLO

    Adam-from-SLO New Member

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    Nice !

    Ultimately though, it comes down to your state of mind( right before, and during the ride), whether you feel up to it or not(physically drained, or physically feeling good) does play some role in things , but the mind/brain is a powerful tool- a force to be rekon with for sure.
     
  19. fergie

    fergie Member

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    + Chris Boardman.

    Who could hit 56kph and hold it for 60min!!!
     
  20. john979

    john979 New Member

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    Didn't Boardman once say he never once exceeded 1000 watts?
     
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