Level 2 revisited

Discussion in 'Power Training' started by Chipotle, Jan 12, 2007.

  1. yzfrr11

    yzfrr11 New Member

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    I am not a believer.
     


  2. jbvcoaching

    jbvcoaching New Member

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    Which don't you believe? That the FTP of the prior year's TdF winner was between 5.5 and 6.0W/kg (I'm assuming 70-75kg), or that he could produce ~90% of FTP (normalized) for 4 hours?

    With all the other numbers getting bandied about by some of the folks on this list...these seem quite believable.
     
  3. rmur17

    rmur17 New Member

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    https://www.peakscoachinggroup.com/freeinfo/going_uphill_fast.html

    this article states 150 lbs / 68 kg ... he looked Rasmussen-like to me ....
     
  4. jbvcoaching

    jbvcoaching New Member

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    That article refers to his weight in July of 1996, Amstel took place in April of 1997. 2kg "heavy" in April is not a stretch for most pros.

    Doesn't look anything like Rasmussen here:
    http://www.cyclingnews.com/photos/1997/BJARNE3AM.JPG
    http://www.cyclingnews.com/photos/1997/BJARNE1AM.JPG
    http://www.cyclingnews.com/photos/1997/BJARNE2AM.JPG
    http://www.cyclingnews.com/photos/1997/BJARNE5AM.JPG
    http://www.cyclingnews.com/photos/1997/riis97.gif

    Even at 68kg, that only gets his FTP just over 6W/kg...again, I've got no problem believing that one. In fact, it seems low given what we now know about what was going on in 1997, and the riders/teams he beat.

    http://www.cyclingnews.com/results/archives/apr97/amstel97b.html

    Edited to correct years. Thanks Robert!
     
  5. RChung

    RChung New Member

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  6. rmur17

    rmur17 New Member

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    okay he was on the Kaiser roll eating plan that winter! In TdF shape he looked like skin & bones to me.
     
  7. Barrel

    Barrel New Member

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    As you discuss about books, have any of you read Maximum Performance for Cyclists (Paperback) by M.D. Michael J. Ross ISBN: 193138262X and what were your thoughts about it?

    Br,
    NewMemberHere
     
  8. Barrel

    Barrel New Member

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    Have any of you read Michael J. Rosses book ISBN:193138262X and what were your thoughts about it?
     
  9. Barrel

    Barrel New Member

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    Have any of you ever read book of Michael J. Ross; "Maximum Performance for Cyclists" (2005) 193138262X and were thoughts about it?
     
  10. sidewind

    sidewind New Member

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    I just read it quickly; the core of the book are different HIT (High Intensity Trainings) described. HIT is like the key to performance, according to the author. For a layman, most of those seem to be based on different tests performed and reported in the PubMed, at least several protocols are 1:1.

    Anyhow; the book promises that by the book, one could tailor every workout to suit the individual, but not much details how to do that. There are lot of exercises proposed to be done early in the morning with empty stommach, and then after exactly one hour rider should stop for eating carbs or something.

    The long steady power exercises are deemed to be counter productive, as according to some study they had been dropping the athöetics performance by 1-2 %. However, no claim why the elite riders are doing 4-6 hour training rides, as e.g. Discovery training camp seem to be about.

    And lastly, they have example training programs which cover 24 - 30 weeks; what are the cyclists assumed to do the other half of the year?

    The book contains a lot of theory how the different types of muscles work and how to develope those; that was maybe the most interesting part of the book.

    So I bought the book, as I somehow had a different opinion what the book would be about; it was not expensive, but don't know weather it was worth of it... Maybe for someone looking for new types of VO2max or anaerobic intervals, but not something I'd base my endurance training on.
     
  11. woodgab

    woodgab New Member

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    Taking the L2 position.

    Breaking ranks a bit here, but don't be surprised if the cumulative attacks during a road race leave you dropped. Lots of L4 and some L3 aren't going to physically, or mentally, train you to withstand all of the bursts that racing will force out of you. Its quite possible you will become a "pack" finisher with too strict a L4 routine.

    For TT's, I can understand the heavy L4, but even then, some L5 (~1-5min) is called for to develop your V02 max and trigger bigger gains in FTP. I don't think I'm breaking ranks with "training with power" to say this. I was just reading the Normalized vs Average power section this morning. The very fact that NP is apt to be much higher than AP during a road race speaks to your ability to survive the surges that will take you well past threshold for what will seem like *interminable periods* if all you've done is threshold work.

    Last season, all I did was TT's and some group rides. Lots of 2 X 20's, with 3 and 5 X 4's mixed in. All I wanted to do was nail 12k (~20min) TT cources. At season's end, according to Coggan's chart, I was upper cat3 for FTP (~3.9w/kg), but a full catagory behind in 5 second and 1 minute durations. I knew how bad it felt when L5/L6 power was needed to bridge, or power over rollers.

    This season I plan of doing crits to round myself out and my routine since the fall has been vastly different. ccrnnr9, if it's your first year on the bike, sticking to L3/4 may be wise. Coming from where I am/was, however, L4 makes little sense because it is not where I will be a sitting duck with the Cat4/5 crowd.

    So, I've given traditional (majority view) methods a try since fall. Yes, that's LSD, starting with about a month of L1 before mostly L2 and L6/L7 work. This included some core and weight training (L7) mixed in. It has basically been what you might call a "pro-lite" base training program crammed into 8-12 hour weeks.

    Before I go further on how its going, I should explain that I am not here to be troll, or throw gasoline around. My reason for returning is bridging the gap between insufficient weekly TSS and what an appropriate base is. L2 is NOT worthless in my eyes and is a key reason why Pro/1/2 riders are relaxed as they lap at 27-30mph(~40kph) on-season.

    More than 2 months in, after I had gotten over a wild insecurity about dumping all my threshold work, it started to hit me that strength and fitness weren't the same thing. One can go up while the other goes down. I went out one morning to my usual 1.5mi, ~3-4minute interval spot and, to my surprise was able to average within 10 watts of my PR. This was without doing ANY L4, for months. I reasoned three things. Low cadence hill work, squats/lunges and being in the road vs TT position. I was panting like a dog, but told myself in November and December I shouldn't care and continued working.

    6-8 weeks from what should be the first events and its time to start adding duration to what is now higher, but short lived power. So far, three, or four, 2 X 20's have been thrown into the mix at low L4, but no full on threshold work because I don't want my knees to buckle during the "maximum strength phase". I don't even know what my FTP is right now, but zone 2 watts are definitely higher at given heart rates.

    Going at level 4 a lot isn't easy, but I believe being there too much fosters insecurity about stepping back to work on different zones/weaknesses. Letting go of FTP becomes a horrifying thought, if steady L4 is your mantra. In my case, if I can regain my FTP, without adapting added power, nothing will be gained. If I can't regain FTP, I'm in real trouble. But if the same, or higher, FTP comes back with a properly developed sprint, running cat4/5 should be a real blast this year;)
     
  12. ccrnnr9

    ccrnnr9 New Member

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    That is an interesting way of thinking of things woodgab. I'm not really sure I understand how you maintained close to the same avg watts without any dedicated L4 or L5 work (especially L5). On the other hand, I think it is in the best interest of every rider to have a mix of workouts at different levels. The only thing I just don't agree with is the whole L2 concept. I do do L2 rides on occasion and they are fine and dandy but I have yet to have anyone prove to me that the benefits of L2 are any better (or even the same) as L3. People seem to think that L3 is a very narrow range when if you use the zones that Coggan or Stern outline, the ranges are actually pretty broad. You can do rides of upwards of 3hours in that range.

    I guess what I am saying is that I don't understand why people don't emphasize a mix of different training intensities and durations. Assuming I am riding 7days/week, I do probably 3-4 of those as L4 workouts, 1-2 as L1 workouts depending on my fatigue level, and always have at least one L3 (maybe L2) ride. Once I am around 6-8weeks out from the beginning of the season, I will start to add in L5 interval training and other higher intensity training.
    ~Nick
     
  13. otb4evr

    otb4evr New Member

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    Nick,

    Take a look around. You will find that the vast majority of the people here do recommend a mix of different training intensities and durations.

    What you will find, though, is that general questions bring general answers and specific questions bring specific answers. If you are asking about what "base" is thought to be vs. how to prepare for a season of crits, you will likely get a different answer.

    Jim
     
  14. ccrnnr9

    ccrnnr9 New Member

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    I agree. I was just making a point in case someone were to be reading the thread and were to get confused. I think sometimes people tend to get into these arguments too much and that leads people to believe that a solid training regimen is either A or B and not a combo thereof. Sorry for the confusion.
    ~Nick
     
  15. otb4evr

    otb4evr New Member

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    Nick,

    Not a problem.

    Personally, I think you have the right idea about your training approach and am curious to see how you do this season.

    Good Luck.

    Jim
     
  16. Roadie_scum

    Roadie_scum New Member

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    Due to study commitments, illness and an occasional lack of organisation, I did several road races and crits this year with widely varying FTP's. I ride A grade Australia/Cat 2 US, with, in bad form (from Cog's chart) mid range Cat 2 FTP, 5MP, Cat 3/4 1MP, Mid cat 4 5SP. In good form that turns into Low end Cat 1 FTP, Slightly higher 5MP and not that much adjustment in the other two. I almost never get dropped in surges and have found that where I get dropped tends to be whenever I am riding with a lower FTP and normalized power is higher than my FTP.

    I agree, but for different reasons. I find constant L4 mentally taxing and I go stale (not sure if there might be a physiological reason for this). Still, I put in plenty of L3/L4 when, eg, climbing on endurance rides.

    Yep.

    I don't think L2 is worthless either, to quote Ric Stern:

    "Zones 1-3: These zones are primarily designed to help with endurance, allowing high volume, low intensity work to be completed. Zone 2 forms the 'core' of an endurance cyclist's training programme. At the lower zone, fat is the predominant fuel source, with carbohydrate usage increasing as intensity increases."

    I'm not buying the weight training, but that's another thread.

    I'd be much more interested to know (if you are uding WKO+), how does your accumulated TSS in all sustainable aerobic zones look (eg L2/3/4). Also, it is only a 3-4 minute interval, when you say you are doing L6, how much are you doing? This could bias your ability up.

    This is more a sign of consistent training than necessarily being proof that fitness improving in a positive way. It's not a bad thing though, I'm not saying that.

    You can certainly regain FTP and probably increase it - another season in the legs, some different training, etc.


    To me it seems your training is 'not unreasonable', though not necessarily optimal. Stick to your plan, I wouldn't claim my training is optimal either. We all have to experiment, and hopefully we get better each year.

    My bottom line would be this: if your FTP is upper end of cat 3, you should be able to consistently finish very close to the front of cat 4, even if you go backwards when you sprint. I would make sure you do some very solid L6 work sprinkled throughout your time (1-2 minutes with full recovery, not 20s of sprint). I would also very seriously evaluate my bike handling and tactics. I had a teammate a couple of years ago who was better at pretty much every point in the power chart last year but got dropped in crits because he was timid in the bunch. I also managed to get prize money in big time crit sprints by riding the right position and being aggressive. This is sprinting against pro's, with cat 4 sprint power. I am certainly working on my sprint some more this year, but with that kind of gap between your FTP and your peers, nothing should be hard unless you are making tactical errors or are timid in the bunch.

    If you are timid in the bunch: find a large grassy area (like a football field or a park). Go out with a friend and ridee along next to each other, arms relaxed, stable on the bike. You then practice steering into each other, bumping, etc. One-three sessions of this done with commitment and you should be fine to basically try as hard as you can to push each other around, try to force the other person off, etc. You should both be able to handle anything. Now, I'm not saying you then push guys around in races, but it gives you a lot more confidence if you then know that if someone brushed you, it ain't no thang, you could handle much more contact.

    Good luck with your season!
     
  17. ccrnnr9

    ccrnnr9 New Member

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    Thanks! I have already seen about a 10-15% increase in my FTP since mid December. This is all calculated and is not perfectly accurate, but regardless, I am definately making improvements. Good luck to you as well!

    Roadie, you refer to Coggan's chart in your post. I have been searching on google but cannot find it anywhere. Is it online or just in his book? Every once in awhile people refer to a chart that lists average power or avg relative power #'s that equate to a certain racing level (cat5, cat2, etc). I would be interested in looking at that as well as a chart that has a general ranking for relative power in males. Right now I am at around 3.56 watts/kg for my 20minutes and ~3.2 watts/kg for 1hour.
    ~Nick
     
  18. peterpen

    peterpen New Member

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  19. Roadie_scum

    Roadie_scum New Member

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

    And then download the excel file or look at this: http://www.cyclingpeakssoftware.com/images/powerprofile_v4.gif

    As Andy says, the charts are most useful for comparing relative strengths and weaknesses and appropriately responding to these with training strategies. The middle of the charts are interpolated from known world class specialists and untrained values so, I think especially sprint powers can be higher by category than equivalent level road riders could do.

    You know your racing category from how well you race, but, for interests sake the 1 hour power you give is around Cat 4 according to the chart.
     
  20. ccrnnr9

    ccrnnr9 New Member

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    Thanks! I don't know how I passed that up. I read the article but some how missed the links to the profiles. My hope is to increase my FTP to around 3.8-3.9 by the end of the season which for me would be around 275watts at FTP. The best thing about training with power is the ability to set goals so much better!
    ~Nick
     
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