My first criterium tonight...

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by Aztec, Apr 6, 2004.

  1. Aztec

    Aztec New Member

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    Did my first tonight, a 25 minute Cat 4/5.

    WOW. I think there were 50 or so riders. About 10 dropped. I held with the front 1/3 until the last half of the last lap when I was just unable to hold the wheel in front of me. I let everyone by and coasted through with a few other older guys.

    I found myself near or at max HR the whole time. And I discovered that my max is actually 194, not the 192 I had seen before. Nice!

    I didn't think that it would be that hard. I thought for sure it would settle down. Even so, the pace was only 25 mph average. Kind of demoralizing. I think I spent too much time in my own air even though I wasn't at the very front.

    But I'll be back at it next week...

    Thanks to all who gave advice on the previous thread.
     
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  2. Cryder

    Cryder New Member

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    Right on man. Wish we had more crits round these parts (MT). Was hoping you would post how you did. Glad to hear all went well and you kept the rubber side down. So what would you do dif next time? Any thoughts?

    - n -
     
  3. Aztec

    Aztec New Member

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    Well, I would try to settle down more at the start! My HR was over 130 the MOMENT I started spinning the trainer in the easiest gear. I recorded it, so I can see that just standing listening to starting instructions I was at 136 bpm. Hmmm, some nerves maybe?

    I'd also like to do a better job of drafting. I got caught way too many times too far behind the rider ahead and would have to gas it to catch back up. I think this was yo-yo effect from the inevitable post-corner increase in speed. Sometimes I'd skip the sprint back and just slowly close the gap again, but I think that was actually more net work.

    I had to tap the brakes far too often, too. What a waste of energy! I think I'd be smarter to position myself so that I can overlap the guy ahead rather than jam on the brakes and stay directly behind.

    And of course, since I've mostly trained low intensity so far, I'd like to get fitter so I can be in a more managable effort zone. It will be a lot more fun when I can have 10-15bpm to spare and can actually launch an attack now and then just for the heck of it.
     
  4. Roy Gardiner

    Roy Gardiner New Member

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    Sounds like all you need is practice. Pacing, staying near the front to smooth out the corners, overlap to avoid braking, all come fairly quickly if you're up to it with fitness, which you clearly are. How often can you ride a crit? During the season here in London I could do 6 a week :)D ) but in fact do 3. If I'm fit enough the skill comes in a month. Bonus: very little training needed!
     
  5. Aztec

    Aztec New Member

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    I can do it 1x per week. I can't believe there are so many in the UK!

    I'm not so sure about my fitness being enough. I was darn near max HR the whole time. While I could move up in the pack whenever I wanted [except for the last lap], I was gassed by the effort to do so.

    Now, you'd think I'd be relaxed for the next one. But no, I'm already nervous!
     
  6. EoinC

    EoinC New Member

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    Well done. Crit's are excellent for making you push yourself. They help you to increase both your speed and your skill level (at least while you stay upright).
    While you say that it took too much effort to move up in the pack, this is exactly what you need to do in order to expend less effort overall. As long as you can manage to stay with the pack, the pace remains more constant at the front and more "yo-yo-ish" at the rear. It's early days, but, if you can get up amongst the first 10 or so riders, taking your turn at the front, you will be in the right place for when a move happens.
    All of those efforts at chasing to catch the front riders after every corner is what takes it out of you. The further back in the pack you are, the more acceleration and deceleration you have to go through whilst trying not to let the rubber band break.
    Like the previous postings, race as much as you can. Being able to hold a wheel will save you a lot of energy and allow a degree of recovery between efforts.
    Most of all, enjoy it - and go back for more.

    Regards,
    Eoin C
     
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