It's killing me but..........

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by Sillyoldtwit, Jan 24, 2006.

  1. Bigpikle

    Bigpikle New Member

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    JS - I guess you have to do what you have to do, but I cant even see how anyone could actually physically sit on that ;)

    Been plodding away doing loads of 1-2hr SST and tempo rides getting the miles in and making the most of the mild weather, as well as a few club runs. Was still in shorts and short sleeves until 2 days ago when autumn suddenly arrived with 20mph winds and cold temps. I've been riding my singlespeed a lot and have made up a freehub for the PT wheel so that I can run the PT on the singlespeed and get some numbers! Its actually surprising how many TSS I was racking up on these rides. Its also providing a great range of cadence work with high rpm spinning on the flats with tailwinds through to lower rpm hills and headwinds. No idea if this really has any training impact over time or not though, other than a feeling of greater flexibility in the legs to cope with different cadences?

    One thing I have seen a lot written about this autumn is the 'low/high' training approach - where the majority of miles are done at L2 with just a few quality sessions at L4/5. They espouse almost the opposite of the SST threshold approach and claim L3/SST work racks up too much fatigue to allow high quality sessions to be completed as well as they should be. In some ways this seems to have been true with me this year as I racked up loads of tempo and SST riding and certainly improved my depth of fitness, but I recognise I didnt do enough quality L4 work and I'm sure this contributed to my stagnation of FTP. There is no doubt I benefited from all the work as my ability to produce good power over long periods has improved, and many of my clubmates will testify after dragging them all along for extended periods on recent club rides, but I'm not sure my 30-60 min power improved as much as it could have?

    There are lots of testimonies about this 'high/low' approach in relation to elite athletes in cycling, rowing, skiing etc but that also makes me wonder how applicable it is to those of us who cant train 15-20 hours a week? If you are only doing those L2 rides for 100-120 mins at a time then do you actually do enough work to stimulate any aerobic development at all? It seems at this time of year the suggestion would be an 80/20 approach so perhaps 3-4 sessions of L2 per week and 1 L4/5 session, and then as you move into next year the balance starts to tilt the other way with less volume and more intensity - starting with the gradual introduction of tempo riding and moving into larger amounts of L4/5 work as race season approaches.

    I'm interested to hear thoughts and experiences with this approach?
     


  2. bulaboy

    bulaboy New Member

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    I think the value of L2 is overstated. Either that or L2 is harder than I think. Last winter I did a boatload of SST on the trainer and my FTP went up. When I was able to get outdoors again I did a lot of riding. I like to go long. Lots of rides of 80+ miles. I think I did 13(?) centuries. Now I know that I surely did some loafing (L1) in through there, but I've gotta believe that when I am out riding for several hours at a time there have to be a few good blocks of L2 or Tempo in there as well. (Don't have a PM). Got back on the trainer a while back and my FTP is down. Rode a thousand miles a month all summer and I'm slower than I was in March! Did some quality training lately and I'm getting a bit of a bounce, but I've learned that (for me) if I want my FTP to go up I need intensity.
     
  3. jsirabella

    jsirabella New Member

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    bula, I believe everyone on this board will agree with you that the SST type training is believed to be the best form of training to see rises in FTP but IMHO everyone is different and will react differently to different types of training. My feeling has always been that SST type training is good for folks with limited time but I have seen many do well, hit walls or never really saw the improvements that hoped for. Also it seems that most folks go to extremes when they compare SST training to L2, how about the never mentioned zone of L3 and if you are going to put in the tons of hours I have found for myself L3 (80%) /L2 (20%) works well. In the end I have found the name of the game is mix, not always SST nor L3 nor L4.L5 but to keep changing at times to present the body with new stimulus.

    One other issue to play devil's advocate, what is the real goal, win the race, get somewhere faster or raise FTP? Today I had the best time I ever had from NYC to Belleville, under 1h 20m and when I compared my stats to yesterday I was about the same but a little better at different time intervals but lessened the time by more than 20 minutes! I was more pumped about that than the FTP numbers being a bit higher.

    FTP is fun and should result in better results in other ventures but there are many gains not mentioned through simply putting the time and miles in on the bike that can make a big difference.

    Just my experience and 2 cents...

    -js
     
  4. jsirabella

    jsirabella New Member

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    Quote: Originally Posted by Bigpikle .
    JS - I guess you have to do what you have to do, but I cant even see how anyone could actually physically sit on that ;)




    bp, I just wanted to say loving the Surly. It is so smooth on the bumpy road but at times it feels like driving an SUV. It rides so well but does not seem to really want to quickly accelerate but that is probably me and not the bike. Two days in a row os small craft advisory which I have learned means crazy wind and even the Surly was getting tossed around a bit but it was great in the head winds. There is something nice about the feel of a new bike (mostly new). The 44 combined with the 12/28 has given me a a great selection to keep up with folks when I want to and cruise when I want to also. The brakes has just the right pull...can not say I have been happier about a bike and will put the miles into this bike.

    The procedure seems to have had a positive based on the current numbers as I am seeing better straight numbers and normalized numbers in the 235 range for one hour best and 250 for my 20 minute best during the ride.

    My post to bula gives my approach to training but there are many wiser folks around here.

    -js
     
  5. Bigpikle

    Bigpikle New Member

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    5hrs of non-stop biblical rain on the club ride today. I would say it was horrible but actually with good rain gear that keeps you warm when wet, great banter between the 6 of s and a camaraderie in suffering, it turned out to be a great ride. Some of the roads were just a river though and it was really hard to navigate the poor road surfaces with the water filling every pothole. Another 210TSS though and a good steady session and the CTL is beginning to creep up and stay up now. A couple of rides tomorrow as my car is at the dealers and that should add another 100TSS or so. Looks like I have some good opportunities to keep building over the next few weeks so I'm determined to make the most of it and get my CTL as high as possible.

    Still unsure about this L3/SST vs L2/L4 approach. I guess regular rides makes it hard to keep the intensity so its inevitable that the intensity has to drop. I'm beginning to think that maybe short rides in low L3 and then a weekly quality L4 session for the next couple of minths might be a good way to go and then add more intensity after Xmas?
     
  6. bulaboy

    bulaboy New Member

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    Quote: In the end I have found the name of the game is mix, not always SST nor L3 nor L4.L5 but to keep changing at times to present the body with new stimulus.

    -js

    I think you hit on it there JS. I don't understand it, but I suppose doing too much of the same thing is why my FTP went down. Disappointing though. OTOH my work capacity is high so I am able to tolerate a fair amt of work now, at those higher intensities. Using spirited group rides to do some L5. Grinding away on the trainer at more than 110% FTP is like getting a root canal. Besides my trainer WO's weren't the problem. The time I spent doing SST paid off in spades.

    Another factor in this is where you are relative to your limits. I would think you'd need more intensity to spur progress as you improve and time goes on. Or maybe I'm just too old and beat up.
     
  7. jsirabella

    jsirabella New Member

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    Quote: Originally Posted by bulaboy .
    Another factor in this is where you are relative to your limits. I would think you'd need more intensity to spur progress as you improve and time goes on. Or maybe I'm just too old and beat up.


    Not that young but not that old but definitely probably beat up more than most. I am a firm believer in consistency, variety to get over those walls and the human body's ability to adapt. While we may not have the genes of the gods of cycling, we are no slouches either. I mean our genes have made it this far in the grand scheme of things so I have always felt lots of L3 if time permits with rides being of the variety of 2 hours or more. Now when I say L3 I refer to the AVG for the entire ride to be in the L3 range which usually will mean a few L4/SST intervals.

    But I will say when I was able to do a few times a week L3 rides of >3 hours I saw the most gains, now given I am not in it for racing but for commuting, fitness and when needed be able to hang on or pull a wheel when warranted.

    -js
     
  8. Felt_Rider

    Felt_Rider Active Member

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    Update:

    Lately I've been lurking on some pretty good discussions and lot of those concern the topic of intensity/duration/FTP and those are certainly great topics of discussion. But then I started to see slight hints of my mind thinking about my own training methods at the moment. On one side I have a really good understanding of my goals and how I want to approach training for those goals. I have a really good understanding of my genetic ability and the degree of dedication to meeting those goals, such as, how much I am willing to sacrifice in focus at work, life obligations and responsibilities both at home and at work and most importantly my relationship with my wife. I am not willing to jeopardize my career to be a recreational cyclist and I have learned a lesson long ago that competition and winning a $12 trophy is not worth destroying a job and relationships.

    With having fairly good clarity on balancing all of these things it begins to set the outer constraints of time available to train, how to train with consistency, what to do to improve weak areas as a focus to specific goals and so on.

    So I lurk on those discussions of the importance of raising FTP and debate whether one can raise FTP on a dose of L3/SST/L4 or if it has to be L5 or other issues.

    This year because of life (work, relationships, etc.) and a whole lot of rainy weather I simply did not hit training goals like I wanted for 2013. My FTP dropped a little and my CTL has been bouncing in the 60's for months. I have to admit there are times when I focus too much on chasing numbers and for many of us we look at that 300 FTP mark (as it is often mentioned) as being such a huge benchmark of success. Back when I was a competitive lifter I was always asked, "how much do you bench?" Back in the day to bench 315 always seemed to be that magical benchmark of success and if you passed that threshold and went on up you were then considered serious. But eventually the more experienced lifters get tired of answering the question of how much you bench and focused primarily on training consistently. That was more impressive to most diehard lifters. So as it is I pulled away from chasing after FTP as a focal point and have looked at building the foundation of consistent training as best I can with the life schedule. Sure I want my FTP to improve and I know how important a role it plays in performance.

    This means a balance between volume and intensity. Because I have no intention of racing there is absolutely never going to be a time where having a race level sprint is going to be important to me. It bores me in fact to sprint. Among my cycling friends and relative to them only there is not a single one of them that can come close to me on a sprint to the county line sign, but where I struggled previously was endurance when riding with them. What was cool is to have wise veterans remind us that who gives a crap about a sprint if you cannot make it to the finish with the break away group? And this was the case for me even up to last year when in my typical group of friends I had the ability to out sprint any of them, but what good is that if I get shelled off the back at mile 20 of a 70 mile course?

    From this desire to be in the finishing front few or at least to hang on in those brutal unofficial club races was to go build the endurance side. The balance in my week was and has been a goal of L4 intervals during the weekdays inside, on Saturday do a 4 to 5 hour ride with the intensity goal in the 0.7 to 0.8 IF range and then finish off the week on Sunday with a 2x60 in the 0.7 to 0.8 IF range. With this schedule I am handling the stress load, but I am right at the brink of handling it so I feel like I have the right amount for me at this particular time. Hopefully as I get more hours my body will adapt and be able to handle more volume and intensity later.

    On the weekend rides I try to do the full duration with only traffic stops and fast nature breaks, but other than that the goals is to keep spinning the cranks with an attempt to eliminate coasting, no drafting because I train solo most of the time and I eat on the bike most of the time.

    Recent Typical Saturday Ride

    What is cool to see that even though I do primarily all of my training at an intensity below L5 and big volumes of L2 on the weekends that when I have returned to the group rides with the same people doing the same match burning antics from start to finish is that I am no longer getting shelled off the back in the first 20 miles, I am surviving multitudes of surges well above L5 and surviving endurance wise enough that in the last couple of these rides I finished in the front breakaway group and was doing long pulls on the front when even these stronger guys were starting shows signs of fatigue. I have a feeling that my endurance has improved.

    I can get distracted with a lot of these great discussions on training intensities here and on Wattage, but for now I can turn my focus from numbers to what I am experiencing out on the road. Not only have I noticed it, but I will get several comments from others after the ride is over and most of them are fairly shocked to roll into the parking lot and see my bike already on the bike rack and my clothes changed.

    This is not to say that focused intentional training in L5 would not be beneficial to me, but what I find that each time I try it costs me in training consistency and my overall weekly training TSS drops when I try to up the intensity. Maybe one day I will switch my focus over, but as a recreational level cyclists just plain ole basic focus on the aerobic machine suits me fine at the moment.

    Plus another thought of why I train a big load of L2/L3 on Saturday has some other motivations. I love cycling a lot. I love being out for hours on rural roads even solo. Being shut in an office all week I cannot stand the thought of going out to do a short intense ride and then go home. I want to go out and enjoy the day. Besides if I get home too early my wife is just going to setup up some home projects so I might as well take my time and enjoy a long L2/L3 day on the bike.

    disclaimer: this was entirely an update to where I am at the moment and don't want this post to distract others from their specific goals of training when it comes specifics like what levels of intensity or so on.
     
  9. jsirabella

    jsirabella New Member

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    felt, Some really good thoughts there my friend and I concur on many of them. For me it is all about fitness, thin, saving some money, enjoying the scenery of different cities and maybe doing some event rides. I think 2013 can be the perfect year for doing that. I have decided that I will let my body and motivation decide the intensity level and the hours. I am starting to remember again why I liked cycling so much in the past.

    I do have a big series I will be directing in 2013 so I am sure I will be going through my usual ups and downs but that is ok. I think I will have fun with it anyway. I will be the director who comes to the set on a bike. [​IMG]

    I leave for Tokyo Friday so no riding this week but when I come back I see some good sessions ahead.

    -js
     
  10. Felt_Rider

    Felt_Rider Active Member

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    Quote: Originally Posted by jsirabella .
    felt, Some really good thoughts there my friend and I concur on many of them. For me it is all about fitness, thin, saving some money, enjoying the scenery of different cities and maybe doing some event rides. I think 2013 can be the perfect year for doing that. I have decided that I will let my body and motivation decide the intensity level and the hours. I am starting to remember again why I liked cycling so much in the past.

    I do have a big series I will be directing in 2013 so I am sure I will be going through my usual ups and downs but that is ok. I think I will have fun with it anyway. I will be the director who comes to the set on a bike. [​IMG]

    I leave for Tokyo Friday so no riding this week but when I come back I see some good sessions ahead.

    -js


    That is the key for me. I enjoy training a lot, but I have finally come to a point where it is balanced. I think I will improve slowly as a cyclist and yet keep it in a place that does not lose its fun.
     
  11. Bigpikle

    Bigpikle New Member

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    Great contributions guys - so easy to forget why we get on the damn bike in the first place!

    Last Sunday the club ride was almost 5 hours of biblical rain - not even 1 second of break from the torrent. Usually I'd stay in bed but having told a clubmate I'd be there, I turned up. 6 of us headed out and despite the conditions had a cracking ride in the end. Horrible conditions but 5 hours on the bike in the countryside. Beats not being on the bike....
     
  12. Felt_Rider

    Felt_Rider Active Member

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    Quote: Originally Posted by Bigpikle .
    Great contributions guys - so easy to forget why we get on the damn bike in the first place!

    Last Sunday the club ride was almost 5 hours of biblical rain - not even 1 second of break from the torrent. Usually I'd stay in bed but having told a clubmate I'd be there, I turned up. 6 of us headed out and despite the conditions had a cracking ride in the end. Horrible conditions but 5 hours on the bike in the countryside. Beats not being on the bike....


    That type of ride, while one may question at first "why am I doing this", sometimes later at home it plants good memories like it has for you. Though I don't race I have prepared for certain epic events jointly with friends so that each week we did at least one ride together in training for the event. After the event was over and reflecting back I would say the memories of the journey training with my friends as we prepared together were actually greater than the event itself. It was the journey getting there like training for a early spring mountain course where you are cycling in sleet shivering. Once you get home, stand in a hot shower not willing to get out until you empty the hot water heater and then take a seat on the couch to start recovering you think, "Man! We did it. We got out today and made the best of it that we could."

    __________________

    Reading my lengthy post of the ramblings of a mad man there happens to be something sensible within it, but it probably doesn't make sense to others reading it. I would love to be able to summarize that post, but I have never been able to convey my thoughts in a concise manner.

    I guess it is more about coming to a point of taking all that is around me, understanding my genetic potential, understand my constraints in life in regards to training specifics, understanding what I am willing to sacrifice to go to the next level and then come to an acceptance of what I want to achieve. In all of this it brings clarity to my goals and when one has clarity to the goals training can be refined to get to that goal if at all. Or in other words do not set some lofty unrealistic goal unless I am willing to make the sacrifice to get there.

    I find training to be fun and if there was not those life obligations and the thought of having to give up lifting weights I would refine my cycling training. If I did I am pretty sure I would take the Lydiard approach of most of my time dedicated to the aerobic side and then as I closed in on racing start including the anaerobic training. But since I am not going to race I am just going to enjoy focusing on the aerobic side, which I still need years of training and adaptation. But to take this one step further where someone or many have said L2 is junk miles I am going to say "so what." I enjoy cycling as a hobby and I enjoy a day when I can go out and do a long ride however I want to do it and if it is junk miles to do L2/L3 for 5 hours that is okay because I just enjoy being out on the bike.

    I have a coworker that is very much in contrast to this type of sentiment. She is a sponsored triathlete. Her view of riding a bike for casual enjoyment is quite different and I respect that. I asked her a couple weeks ago after her last competition of the season if she had any rides planned. Her response was, "unless I have competition I don't care to ride a bike, or to run, or to swim." She told me that she only cares to train or do any of these things unless she has competition and other than that she could careless about it. I shouldn't have asked her because we have worked together long enough to know she puts her bike away the moment her last competition of the season is done. By the way her genetics are so incredible that when she does start training in the spring it is just a couple of weeks before the first one and this past season she placed first in her AG in every event she entered except when she went to the national, but even then she did quite well for how little she trains. I have to admit that on one side I struggle to talk to her since it is beyond my comprehension why she doesn't enjoy the activity of cycling.

    I think why I enjoy talking with you guys is because you have a drive to improve, but greater than that you all seem to enjoy the activity. So much so that you are willing to ride in 5 hours of hard rain or to ride with chronic back problems. I get that feeling when I see guys like Kevin Metcalfe and I don't know him personally, but when I read his posts elsewhere or see his rides posted on Strava that he has not only enjoyed competing in racing for 30 years, but greater than that he really seems to like cycling as an activity. That pretty cool to IMO.
     
  13. bmoberg337

    bmoberg337 Member

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    Quote: Originally Posted by Felt_Rider .

    I find training to be fun and if there was not those life obligations and the thought of having to give up lifting weights I would refine my cycling training. If I did I am pretty sure I would take the Lydiard approach of most of my time dedicated to the aerobic side and then as I closed in on racing start including the anaerobic training. But since I am not going to race I am just going to enjoy focusing on the aerobic side, which I still need years of training and adaptation. But to take this one step further where someone or many have said L2 is junk miles I am going to say "so what." I enjoy cycling as a hobby and I enjoy a day when I can go out and do a long ride however I want to do it and if it is junk miles to do L2/L3 for 5 hours that is okay because I just enjoy being out on the bike.


    Felt, your post reminds me of an interview I recently read between Tim Johnson and velo news.

    http://velonews.competitor.com/2013/10/news/tim-johnson-qa-curiously-caught-between-soul-rider-and-wattage-dork_305465


    IMO this guy knows how to keep cycling fun. Even though he competes as a professional athlete, he goes on extravagant rides with friends because of the fun and adventure it brings. I follow him on strava and he is always posting cool rides from all over the place. It's clear that he has found a balance between race specific training and being a "cyclists".

    These posts have also made me question my training methods. I recently moved from New England to the bay area in California primarily so I could ride more. I like to keep my training extremely structured and do a lot of long intervals in the L3/L4 range. I'm finding it difficult to adhear to my training zones in my current location because of the variability in grades on the mountain roads. It's hard to rest between intervals when your on a 10-15% grade. As a result I stress over loops that have moderate and consistent grades and the least amount of traffic obstructions. I then estimate how far I will go on each interval and compare that to the elevation profile on the roads that I plan to train on. This ensures that I am not ending an interval on a steep uphill, or I'm not hitting a steep downhill in the middle of an interval. I recently started asking myself whatever happened to just riding your bike? I made a lot of progress this past year hitting those intervals and it's tempting to keep the same structure but it's preventing me from really enjoying what the area has to offer. Definitely in the process of trying to find that "balance", but I think the answer is to match my L3/L4 efforts to the terrain and my rest is on the descents. Not sure if it will be the best training method but it will be the most fun!

     
  14. Felt_Rider

    Felt_Rider Active Member

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    bmoberg, thanks for sharing that interview. That is exactly where I want to be. I was starting to get too rigid with my outlook. I got upset when work or my wife planned something that interfered with training. This evening I will miss training and there is a part of me so fixated on CTL dropping that I get irritable and the bad thing is I don't even plan to compete ever. So I needed to back up a little and preach to myself in the last couple of posts of enjoy structured training, but also enjoy being out on those long country routes and not get too deep in the science of the sport. Which I do like the science of the sport, but I don't have to live it like I am in a laboratory study.


    From the interview "Johnson spends as much time pedaling long rides as he seems to train."

    You are right there in that area of Kevin, Chris Lyman, Fast Freddy and probably tons of others that it must be a good area for cycling. Enjoy some good long rides out there for all of us. :)
     
  15. bmoberg337

    bmoberg337 Member

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    I'm definitely spoiled when it comes to places to ride. The options out here are endless, but I get too rigid with my training as well and it's a shame to let that ruin what the area has to offer. Definitely going to take a step back and just ride!

    And I hear ya about sweating over the numbers. I need to put a piece of tape over my power numbers for the next couple weeks.
     
  16. Felt_Rider

    Felt_Rider Active Member

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    bmoberg, I finally found a route that I was able to smooth out the hills sort of speak in my area. It is about the flattest course I could find near my typical training area north of Atlanta. There are a few big sharp rollers that are in the mix since I cannot eliminate all of it. The other part of this course that is nice is it not a complicated route with very few turns and not that many intersections. It is rural and has fairly low traffic for an early Saturday ride. It took a while to put this route together to fit my goals. I've been cycling in this area since 2004 and just found this combination of roads two years ago. It is an out and back and I have up to 100 miles available, which I typically just do 80 of it on most Saturday's. This course allows me to sit at a steady pace for very long stretches of time without interruption and with the exception of some of those sharper rollers most of the low rolling hills I can stay tucked in aero and power across them.

    Maybe there is something like that near you that you haven't found yet. But I imagine that it will be much tougher to find those roads in your area. Mt Diablo that Kevin uses all the time seems like a nice place for a long steady uphill effort.
     
  17. bmoberg337

    bmoberg337 Member

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    Felt, thats definitely an ideal route. I find steady long efforts like that to be the most productive and efficient way to build endurance. It also allows you to get a good feel for your legs. One nice thing about living in New England was that the roads were pretty consistent in terms of grades. Sounds pretty similar to what you have in GA. I find this helps you develop a feel for different zones. I had gotten myself to the point where I could ride at certain % of my FTP just based off of feel and could literally hold it at fixed wattage for the given duration of an interval w/o ever looking at my pm.

    I now live right at the bottom of the Santa Cruz moutains and a lot of the climbs around there are inconsistent in terms of grades. you might start climbing with a 4% grade then hit a section thats 14+ then it drops to -9% then back up again. The fun factor is high but its hard to put together long steady efforts and maintain a feel for a particular zone. And as you mentioned I have been stressing over putting together loops that are consistent enough to be conducive to long efforts. There are some roads that will allow this (pacific coast hwy, and Hwy 9) but you have to go out and back on the same road. Those roads are honestly some of the best I have been on but I definitely don't want to burn myself out on them. I think the best practice will be to incorporate the long efforts on those roads once a week and on my other rides try to manipulate my intervals to meet the demands of the terrain. For example rather than doing a structured interval 3x20 etc. I just shoot for getting in 60 min at that zone within a given ride. So my efforts will be on the climbs and recovery whenever it descends. The benefit of riding this way is that I can take advantage of everything the area has to offer vs. letting structured training dicatate where and how I ride. It will be interesting to see if I progress at the same rate as before using this method. Never afraid of trying something new if it means having more fun!
     
  18. Bigpikle

    Bigpikle New Member

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    Decided to make a bit of a change today, so as the weather was wet again I jumped on the rollers and decided to add some intensity. 5 sets of 5 (40on/20off). I had no idea how many of these I'd actually manage and what level to go for being indoors rather than on the road, but managed around 320w for the on and 170w for the rests. Managed all 5 sets and actually hammered the final set at around 330-340w for the 'on' bits. Finished pretty toasted but a good session.

    After a lot of reflecting and reviewing lots of discussions here and elsewhere, I've decided to try a slightly more polarised approach for a little while. It will probably end up being 3-4 sessions of L2 on the roads, including the weekend club ride which is a pretty steady and well controlled 120-130km but always includes a good number of short and sharp little hills that get the legs burning a bit before returning to a steady L2 ride. This should then allow me to add in 1 session of intensity each week - perhaps more 40/20's or 30/30's and probably an occasional Sufferfest session. Work will throw in the occasional spanner with a few 2-3 day trips coming up that might mean less time in a week, so I'll try and add a little tempo/SST work on weeks when I wont be able to ride as much.

    I really think I've slipped into the middle ground and apart from the pure VO2 sessions I did as I was TT'ing in the summer, I just haven't done a great deal of focused harder work. I'm hoping this approach will enable me to do more quality - be it quality L2 or quality L4/5. It will be interesting to see what happens by Xmas this year. At some point the weather and darkness will mean I have to go indoors for much of the weekday riding so I'll have to figure that out, but lets cross that bridge when we come to it. I do think its also easier to drag yourself outside when its a L2 ride than worrying about a session of intervals in bad weather.

    So, 2 days of solid L2 work this weekend to kick it off...
     
  19. Felt_Rider

    Felt_Rider Active Member

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    Quote: Originally Posted by Bigpikle .

    So, 2 days of solid L2 work this weekend to kick it off...


    Looks like you got in some good miles between Saturday and Sunday.


    _____________________

    I finally had an encouraging day yesterday with an unexpected opportunity to hit a higher intensity on my 2x60's for the Sunday ride. It was unexpected because I had full intention of keeping it L2 based on how sore my legs were from the Saturday group ride. It was encouraging since I have been in a slump through late spring and the summer months following an injury, illness, work issues, loads of rain and other things. I trained through all of that, but certainly not the quality of training and my fitness slipped. Instead of adjusting my FTP I left it the same thinking that I could make a quick comeback and yet the comeback has been extremely slow.

    I went to the MUP as my typical Sunday place for a calm L2/L3 type pace. This is not a good place to train for higher intensities and if I had an FTP like you guys there is no way to safely train with the amount of people on the trail walking dogs, teaching kids how to bike, people walking, rollerblading and running.

    In the first 60 minute interval that proved to be true as I had to keep my speed down to safely navigate around folk and I got stuck at a couple of extended red lights. My legs were screaming even at low watts, but as I got further out on the trail away from the people I found the watts and speed picking up despite the discomfort. Next thing I know I feel motivated to see if I can hit my old FTP before the slump. At the end of that first 60 minute interval I almost matched my FTP based on looking at the WKO's best 20 minute block of time and was in the 90% range for 30 minutes. On the second interval I backed off the intensity a little so that I did not dig a deep recovery hole.

    So no personal best set yesterday, but still an encouraging day as it has a been a long dig out of that slump. Plus I had a fair amount of residual fatigue before starting this ride.

    Here are the basic metrics for the 2 intervals yesterday. So hitting 0.84 IF on the first interval with half of that time in the L2 range I picked it up once I got some more clear path, but even far out I had moments that I had to ease up to navigate around small groups of cyclists. I was above my FTP quite a few times trying to make up for the loss of momentum due to traffic.

    Lap 1: Time 64 minutes, Distance 20 miles, Avg Speed 19 mph, IF 0.84
    Lap 2: Time 62 minutes, Distance 20 miles, Avg Speed 19.3 mph, IF 0.76
     
  20. Bigpikle

    Bigpikle New Member

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    sounds like a good hard session there Felt.

    I got some miles in but not quite according to plan. The bearings on my PT have simply crumbled after the rain last weekend so the wheel is totally unusable until they are replaced. So single speed on Saturday and although I just span along for 2 hrs the legs felt surprisingly worked after I finished. Might well be the high workload this week? After 2 easy club rides the last 2 weekends I was actually looking forward to a long steady ride on Sunday. Poor weather reduced the turnout to only 6 again and the leader had planned an extra rolling route, so it turned out to be a leg ripping experience. Although I didnt have my PT on a clubmate with the same FTP rode with me and his data showed >28 mins at L5 and above across the 75 miles! No wonder it hurt...

    Got home and immediately started to fel a sore throat and stuffy nose and today I've had a horrible head cold since I awoke. Hoped to at least get an easy hour done today but no hope and I had to get to the airport early as well, so 3 days off the bike now. Good news is I'm off work all next week so am hoping for 10 days of solid steady work. I've sorted out my routine for riding in totally sh*t weather now so hopefully nothing will get in the way!
     
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