Heresy???

Discussion in 'Power Training' started by DecaturNW, Jun 18, 2007.

  1. DecaturNW

    DecaturNW New Member

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    just parted ways today with a coach (young, Cat 1 and moving up, part of a local coaching organization which sells the standard training plans) I used to get set up on re-emergence into cycling. One of his parting shots was this:

    "The Annual Training Plan, as used by TrainingPeaks, is a concept developed by Joe Friel, whose training concepts are outdated and, in my opinion, weren't very effective even when they were "novel". A "periodized" annual training plan traces its roots to training regimens developed by the exercise scientist Bompa for weightlifters. Its implementation in endurance sports has never been justified nor its effectiveness proven. The most effective way to get faster is to work on a program of gradual improvement based on high-intensity training."

    So I have a powertap, been using a program, making very good advances, but am now more than a little confused.

    thoughts?
     
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  2. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    Gotta agree with your x-coach on this one. Periodization got a lot of play for a long time but I no longer buy into it and the more you research its roots the less convincing it is for endurance athletes.

    Working with the Performance Manager and listening to feedback from folks on this forum I've moved to taking rest when life intervenes or my CTL ramp gets too steep but not based on any preplanned periods. I also agree with his feelings on "gradual improvement based on high intensity training" with the caveat that HIT means different things to different folks. If he's talking about SST, L4, L5 and above then I agree. If he's talking about the kind of plans I've seen online that work only L5 and L6 with 30 second to 4 minute intervals then I'm not buying it.

    I've become a firm believer in a Tempo/SST/L4 base topped off with a small amount of L6 and L7 work as the racing season gets under way. Compared to old school LSD training that could be called "high intensity training" but it's still based on longer aerobic efforts like 20 to 30 minute aerobic intervals. It's all about training the appropriate energy delivery systems for your target events and for general road racing, tt's and crits that starts with the ability to fuel your muscles at threshold pace(FTP) for long periods. 30 second to 2 minute intervals just won't get the job done unless you're events are completely anaerobic. Sure that can be the icing on the cake when you've already got a big aerobic engine but you've got to work the systems you're going to use and you can't fuel your muscles anaerobically for a full RR or 40 K TT.

    Anyway, you asked for suggestions, I'd build your base on SST/L4 work with some longer Tempo rides as your core aerobic fitness. When that's getting pretty solid then it's time to work in some of the real high end work that can make the difference during crunch times. That's a form of high intensity training but not the make ya puke work some programs advocate.

    Good luck,
    Dave
     
  3. DecaturNW

    DecaturNW New Member

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    I should note this is not the reason we parted ways, he decided to stop coachinbg due to time constraints.

    I guess the part I'm confused about is the periodization part, over the course of an annual cycle. I buy into his training week to week - I do 2x20 intervals at FTP, hill repeats at 10-20% over FTP, and weekends are long hill climb rides at high pace. he's gotten me quite a bit of improvement (I am now at 4w/kg). The question is around periodization, the annual plan. Your comments are interesting - thanks.
     
  4. RipVanCommittee

    RipVanCommittee New Member

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    I think the key part of his comments are the 'periodized plan as presented by Friel' is not neccessarily the most effective method. 'Periodization' in it's most simple form is to go from general preparation to event-specific preparation. I know your former coach well, and he knows full well the advantages of preparing in this manner. Still, it's hard to get people out of the 'base/build/taper' deal, so a blanket statement such as 'periodization is not effective' sometimes comes out.

    The general preparation phase (winter for most folks) is a great time to work on the basics--raising your threshold power. I'd agree w/your ex-coach--the stuff your doing is the most effective method. After that, you have to look at the specific events in which you want to do well, and look at the specific demands of those events to determine what 'fine-tuning' you need to do.
     
  5. peterwright

    peterwright New Member

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    I think what he says makes alot of sense, but agree with Rip that he is specifically referrring to the more traditional "periodisation"

    We will evolve a training plan with our athletes as they approach their key races - but the general principles are, as he states "gradual improvement based on high inensity training"
     
  6. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, when I rail against "periodisation" I'm specifically talking about a preplanned fixed cycle of rest and work weeks often planned prior to the start of the season and looking out a full year. I really don't buy that approach but raising and lowering intensity on the daily, weekly, and longer time frames to deal with how well an athlete is or is not responding, to deal with life's interruptions and to taper for important races, that I have no issue with.

    Animator called me on the same thing in a different thread, it's not periodization that's problematic. It's just a particular popular implementation of the concept that I have trouble with.

    -Dave
     
  7. buckhorn

    buckhorn New Member

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    Totally unrelated to your question, but you're a cat 1 with a 4 w/kg FTP????
     
  8. Animator

    Animator New Member

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    Actually, I didn't call you on it, at least intentionally. I tend to agree with you and just wondered how you had come to your conclusions. :)
     
  9. jbvcoaching

    jbvcoaching New Member

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    He said his ex-coach was a cat 1, he's the one at 4w/kg.

    That said, I'm a cat 1 (have been since '92) on roughly that FTP, albeit that's at 7000' elevation. They didn't ask my FTP when I upgraded, they just wanted points/results.
     
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