It Hasn't Killed Me After All...but

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by Sillyoldtwit, May 29, 2007.

  1. acoggan

    acoggan Member

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    But LT - or your effort relative to your LT - is the primary determinant of your "endurance".

    More generally: the purpose of any workout (2 x 20 min at level 4 included) is to induce specific physiological adaptations that benefit your performance on race day. In this context, specificity is a very important principle, but it is a mistake to apply it too literally w/ respect to training intensity/duration.
     


  2. NomadVW

    NomadVW New Member

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    If this was the case, then everyone's power would drop equally once they hit an hour on the bike if they went at x% of effort. I understand what you mean and understand that raising one's FTP will inevitably raise one's power at ranges beyond one hour. However, there is more to increasing power at an hour and a half, two hours and more than raising threshold. This seems to be the dilemma posed by our challenge to 2x20's.
     
  3. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    I don't follow your logic here.

    Everyone's CP curve is a bit different with different contributions from AWC and CP itself. So even if two riders rode side by side at say 80% of their respective FTPs (which would have to be very close to one another unless their CdA, weight or rolling resistance was dramatically different or they wouldn't stay side by side for long) for an hour one rider might have less of an AWC contribution to hour power and do better at an hour and twenty or two hours or longer. Still both riders would benefit by raising their FTP as it would mean riding at a lower percentage like 75% or 70%.

    I'm not arguing in terms of needing some longer rides to handle longer races, but it still seems like raising FTP is the best bang for your buck as it allows you to work at a lower IF for the same speed which means burning more fat and preserving more of your limited glycogen stores. That won't get your butt used to sitting in the saddle or teach you to feed yourself on a long ride nor will it build the highest CTL but it still seems like the starting point for everything else.

    -Dave
     
  4. NomadVW

    NomadVW New Member

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    We agree.
     
  5. dome

    dome New Member

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    It is often stated that FTP is the best indicator for performance in endurance events. Does the quote mean that ones power at a longer duration than 1hr would be a better indicator?
     
  6. Alex Simmons

    Alex Simmons Member

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    Well as Andy has often remarked, "the best predictor of performance is performance itself".
     
  7. acoggan

    acoggan Member

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    "Lactate threshold is the most important physiological determinant of endurance performance ability." - A. Coggan

    (Note to the world at large: I tend to choose my words quite carefully.)
     
  8. acoggan

    acoggan Member

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    Your statement does not logically follow from what I wrote.

    Sure - but on the whole it is easier to raise the entire power-duration curve than it is to flatten it, plus the training that you do to raise it tends to flatten it anyway. So, rather than thinking in terms of "I need to train X hours in order to be able to race X hours", you're better off thinking of it in terms of "I need to do the appropriate amount of training at the appropriate intensities (note the use of the plural) that will induce the physiological adaptations that will most benefit my race performance". Does that mean that you can ride multi-day stage races while only training ~1 h/d? Probably not...but it also means that you don't have to train for many hours a day, day-in and day-out (at a necessarily lower intensity), to prepare for such events.
     
  9. wiredued

    wiredued New Member

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    Thought provoking jam packed zip file statement:)

     
  10. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    Agreed, there's a lot packed into that statement. Andy, your economy of words is inspiring :)
    And given your word choice disclaimer I take it you're referring to LT as in the point where blood lactate begins to rise at a steeper exponential rate from a flatter baseline, not the LT we see in articles and training guides that is used in place of OBLA or interchangebly with FTP?
     
  11. sugaken

    sugaken New Member

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    I strongly second this.:)

    Excuse me for cutting in here, but I don't think a distinction that strict is necessary, except FTP. Afterall, LT and OBLA (and can I throw in MLSS here?) are strongly correlated with one another.

    But why "except FTP"? Well, for a starter, it's not "a physiological determinant" in itself but rather a production of various physiological (and mental) determinants.

    But I'm no exercise physiologist, so I will gladly stand corrected if I'm wrong here.

    Ken
     
  12. Alex Simmons

    Alex Simmons Member

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    The problem with LT of course is one of practical application, it requires formal testing with a specific protocol to estimate, wheras FTP, while it is a higher wattage than LT, only requires one to ride their bike and inspect power data to estimate it. Hence the use of "Functional" in FTP.
     
  13. acoggan

    acoggan Member

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    Actually, I was hoping that disclaimer would cause people to focus on the "...most important physiological determinant..." part.
     
  14. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    There I go being literal again and focusing on the wrong part :)
     
  15. Pendejo

    Pendejo Member

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    I really wonder if in the attempt to make the study of athletic performance into a rigorous science we've reached, or gone past, the point of diminishing returns: too much data that will ultimately reveal nothing helpful.

    An analogy would be stock market analysis. There's no end to the data that can be accumulated or the ways it can be sliced and diced. But there is no hidden key to the stock market that can be found underneath it all, no Holy Grail. Almost any stock-picking scheme will work well sometimes, and not others, and there's no way to tell beforehand what those times are.

    I think the same is true for athletic performance. A training regimen might work well for one person but not another, and there's no way to tell beforehand. Because no two athletes are alike genetically, physiologically, and mentally (and even the same athlete is not the same from one time to another), it is impossible to duplicate the initial conditions in experiments, something that is necessary in order to reach valid scientific conclusions.

    In the end, in my opinion, the most important bit of data will be the intuitions of an experienced coach and those of the individual athlete, with course corrections along the way. The sort of detailed numerical analyses of performance data that dominate some of these threads might be interesting, but I doubt that much of it is making many people faster out on the roads.
     
  16. rmur17

    rmur17 New Member

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  17. peterwright

    peterwright New Member

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    That's a bit like saying that if you were badly injured, you would rather trust yourself to a 19th century doc with good experience & intuition than a young doc using the latest technology and principles at a new ER...

    Of course the best coaches will use experience and intuition - but this will be in conjunction with the very latest developments in training science.
     
  18. Alex Simmons

    Alex Simmons Member

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    Myself and clients are living proof that's not the case.
     
  19. acoggan

    acoggan Member

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    If you asked me (which you didn't :) ), I'd say that the probability that somebody would benefit from some of the various "tools" that are now available hinges upon two things:

    1) how close they've come to reaching the limit of their ability when relying on purely empirical/experiential methods; and

    2) the extent to which they can fully grasp and apply the various scientific/analytical methods.

    Since the majority of those who have previosuly made it to the top presumably were already doing quite well in terms of #1, I don't think that a more quantitative approach is necessarily going to make the fastest significantly faster. There are, however, a lot of people - in fact, quite possibly most - who underperform relative to their ability because they haven't (yet) been able to figure things out purely empirically/based on experience.* For them, route #2 can pay huge dividends, by "speeding up the learning curve" and making more people just plain fast. (In turn, this requires those at the very top to raise the level of their game, as more pressure is exerted from below.)

    *Even the most elite athletes don't necessarily always "get it right" - for example, I saw data recently for a runner who finished just off the podium in the Olympics which suggested that they'd badly mistimed their peak, something that a more analytical/quantitative approach should have helped them avoid.
     
  20. frenchyge

    frenchyge New Member

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    Fortunately, the laws governing energy and physics are more predictable and repeatable than the myriad perceptions, circumstances, and manipulations that affect how people value stocks.

    Within the perceived context that I believe it was made, I actually agree with this statement (except for the use of the word 'dominate', which I believe is hyperbole). That is, lurkers snipping *detailed* training routines from posts directed toward other riders, without having any means to check whether the lurker shares physiological characteristics with that other rider, seems akin to trial-and-error or using Bicycling magazine articles for coaching advice (or perhaps picking stocks from Money magazine's Hot List).

    Now, I'm more of the opinion that more threads are dominated by 'generic' advice which is intended to be adapted to the reader's specific situation prior to use. I also believe that principled advice of that nature is more generally useful, although it does require the additional steps and fine tuning on the part of the user to be successful. I'd be willing to bet that the generic advice offered here is making *many* people faster on their bikes.
     
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