L6: duration vs. intensity

Discussion in 'Power Training' started by Speedskater, Jan 18, 2008.

  1. Speedskater

    Speedskater New Member

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    It´s quite some time until I will have to do serious L6 training but I want to check this in advance.

    Last season, I did my L6 training in a 6-8x 1 min format, separated by 3-5 min of rest. Every interval was done at maximum power. My best 1 min avg was 669 W and I managed to so 550-580 W in the last repetition.
    When I take a look at my race data, there is only one race, where I came close to my PB and did 615 W. In the other races, the MMP1 was 480-540 W.

    From this data, two questions arise for me:
    Does it make sense for me to train so much above the power that is required in racing situation or would it be more reasonable to do either more repetions or prolong them?
    Comparingmy PB to the demands of my racing and considering, I did not win these races, is it likely that I should concentrate more on my FTP combined with a high CTL in order to be able to put out a higher raction of my PB in race situations?

    Tobias
     
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  2. waterrockets

    waterrockets New Member

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    I've only had my PowerTap since November, but it showed me much stronger in the 5s and 1m ranges than in 5m and FTP. At the time I was doing 6x200 meter sprints and 6x1m intervals (similar to your workout) every week -- both. When I realized how lopsided I was on the low end, I changed to much longer intervals and SST, doing sprints or 1m intervals only every two weeks -- and only one of the workouts.

    Six weeks later, my 1m power has jumped from 691W to 721W, and my 5m and FTP are climbing with it. This surprised me, because I am so rarely training at that duration. So, I think it depends a bit on your natural abilities, but your 1m power seems quite strong on its own, and developing 5m power and FTP is probably going to help it anyway. There seems to be agreement that road racing favors 5m and FTP much more than 5s or 1m power....
     
  3. frenchyge

    frenchyge New Member

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    Three things:
    1) yes, a higher FTP is going to be more generally useful in race situations and will improve all aspects of your racing. Definitely put as much focus here as you are able.
    2) most likely you'll always see better numbers from an all-out training effort than during a race. In a race you're either holding something in reserve in case there's a counter-attack, or you're already tired when the effort starts.
    3) 1-min power reflects one's abilities in both neuromuscular power and anaerobic capacity, and will benefit from working to improve either one, or both (if that's the goal). Shorter sprint intervals will probably do more for NM power than the workout you described above, and 1-min intervals with a shorter rest interval will probably do more for your anaerobic capacity (the shorter recoveries will do more to drive oxygen-deficit) -- say, 1-min on, 1-min off for at 3-5 reps, then recover and repeat ad nauseum.

    Now, I'd argue that improving 1-min power is *not* the goal here unless you really felt that those races were lost by your lack of performance for 1 key minute. Look at the demands of your racing to determine what fitness areas you'll benefit the most from improving.
     
  4. rmur17

    rmur17 New Member

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  5. Speedskater

    Speedskater New Member

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    Quite the opposite is true. My 5s, 1m, 5m, FTP PB are 17,8, 9,8, 6 and 4,6 W/kg with FTP never formally testet but out of a 2 h race. Some information about me, so you all don´t have to read tomuch between the line. Last year, I upgradet from category C to A, which should be Cat. 1 in the US. my CTL was around 70-80, since I mainly did 3x20 min L4 and 5-8x5 min L5 with a bit L6 and startet SST only in fall, due to reading this forum. ;)
    Therefore, my FTP was quite high and the CTL was okay, since races in cat. C are around 2 h. When I upgraded and did some cat. A-races in fall, I directly felt what is ment, when someone writes that FTP is how fast you can go and CTL determines for how long. I had no problem with the speed but faded towards the end of the races. To this end, this winter I try to build a solid base (current CTL 73 with 650 TSS/w) and do less L4/L5.

    I hope this helps in order to give some suggestions.
     
  6. rmur17

    rmur17 New Member

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    Sounds like you're strong right across the board (in terms of power-duration). Something most of us would just love to have!

    I don't know your background or whether you have a coach but in general if you need to compete at longer events and, more often, and back-to-back ... stage races etc. then I'd suggest getting your CTL up in advance of racing season is one good goal. Many folks have found the 100-150 Tss/d range manageable so perhaps mid-range (125 Tss/d) would be a good target for you.
     
  7. Speedskater

    Speedskater New Member

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    Thanks for the reply!

    Last year, I just looked at raising my FTP with minimum effort (time wise), what resulted in excessive L4 and L5-training. I managed to raise my normal avg power in 3x20 min L4 from 320 to 345 W from December to May, where it stabilized. This approach was at least partly due to my negative experience with LSD, stressing the L. When I went from junior to amateur, I switched to a very strong regional team with some seasoned cyclists, some of them among the top 50 amateurs in Germany. Training with them, especially in a training camp, led to a steady decrease in my performance - quite normal if you are used to 10-12 tkm/year and do 180/200/220 km back to back for two weeks in hilly terrain. So, after taking a long rest from cycling and competing in speedskating, I chose the short-duation-high-intensity-approach.

    This season, I will have to do mainly 3-4 h races with a very competitive peloton, including KT pros. Luckily I realized by late summer that there is more to your sustainable power than plain FTP and started a CTL-based plan from last November. In November, I did around 50% of my pervious in season CTL (70-75) on the bike and added running, so started with a CTL of 50. Fom then, build ~ 3 TSS/w, keeping the cycling TSS the same and adding volume by running. In December, I also increased my cycling volume and rode my bike 3 times a week an ran 2 times or did XC-skiing. My cycling maily consisted and consist of SST und the week for time constraints and L2/3 on the weekends. Now, I quit cross training apart from core and upper body training, and only ride my bike. Last week, I was at 700 TSS/w and plan to build 3-5 TSS/w until the end of February what should result in ~850 TSS/w. Then, I want to switch to more L4 and L5 training, because early races start at the beginning of March with the first more important one in late March. I hope CTL to reach its maximum due to the delay in this phase and then give away something of it for L6 training and freshness.

    Does this sound reasonable?
    One thing, I worry a bit about is the CTL increase from 80 at maximum in 2007 to 125-130 this season. As common wisdom goes, one shouldn´t increase mileage more than 20% from season to season. The same should be true for or not? Do you see a great danger of overdoing? Right now, I´m between -10 - -20 TSB and feel quite good and the form coming up, although I did no formal FTP testing fr two months.
     
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