Power Quest 4 the 2busy

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by kopride, Nov 13, 2007.

  1. kopride

    kopride Member

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    The Mission: Can the typical 42 y/o guy juggling a busy career, 4 young kids, and miscellaneous commitments improve power by riding between 4- 7 hours per week? I have to think that my situation is common. Little time but willing to work hard during the time available.

    Equipment: PowerTap 2.4 equipped bike and cyclops fluid trainer.

    Baseline: Last 1 hour time trial (outdoors) in July 07 resulted in a 258W average. Weight about 170 pounds. When I started in July, indoors, a 2 x 20 at 225 average was tough. Within the past few weeks, I have been able to do 2 x 20 minute intervals indoors (5 minute rest) @ 244 average fairly consistently, which I am interpreting as meaning that I need to retest my FTP. Weather permitting, I will do a one hour TT this weekend and see where I am.

    Time Constraints: I can usually get 3 indoor rides of 1 hour each during the week. If I am lucky, no kids sports, work travel etc, I can get a 2.5 to 3 hour ride in on the weekend. If not, it is another one hour session indoors for a total of 4 hours a week minimum (common) and 7 hours max (rare). I also usually do 2 "vanity" weight work outs a week (benches, chins, upper body), which I do not delude myself into thinking helps the cycling. Occasional jogging or hotel weight rooms on the road also is a feature.

    Program: Looking to craft a solid winter program under these conditions. For the next 6 weeks, I basically am going to continue doing three sessions of 2 x 20 minute invervals @ 240-250 a week (eg MWF) to increase FTP. My outdoor ride is usually just a quick tempo ride with my buddies on the weekend. Or a one hour interval session indoors Eg. 2 x 12 minute (1 min over > 120 % FTP /2 minute unders 85% FTP); 2 x 12 pyramid intervals (45s to 2 min); hill intervals etc, I don't do a lot of easy days simply because I am essentially "resting" 3 days a week by necessity.

    Request: I will share my PT data and let you know how I progress, a la Tyson's continuing thread. Any suggestions/tips/coaching are welcome.

    Goals: increase power, stay ahead of the recreational group I ride with, ease back into racing this spring after lengthy lay off, fight off the malaise of middle age, keep weight down, improve hill climbing.
     
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  2. Alex Simmons

    Alex Simmons Member

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    Yes (but consistency of training is key).

    You may want to consider changing up your intervals every so often to maintain interest and also think about what you might do if progress stalls.
     
  3. jeff828

    jeff828 New Member

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    Yes you can, I do & I race (cat 3, 40years old, and do 4-6+ hr centuries)

    Nail the 2-3x20min MWF and enjoy the weekends

    Work on that FTP, if you get bored, replace 1 day with 5x5min Vo work

    Like Alex said, consistancy

     
  4. kopride

    kopride Member

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    Last night I pounded out 2 x 20 indoors at around 9-10 est. I Haven't had time to download my PT, but the first interval looked to be AP 250 and the second 244 with a five minute rest. When I download, I will confirm. I have been trying to maintain as close as possible to my last hour TT outdoors (7/07), which was 258. I do lose a bit indoors. Generally, I do lose a bit starting my workout so late and after dinner. Also pretty stressful day overall, so not that bad given all the circumstances.

    I will keep posting my progress to stay motivated and obtain input. I am planning on lifting tonite (upper body "beach muscle" workout) and doing another 2 x 20 on Thursday. Hopefully, weather will allow a nice long loop outdoors on Saturday. I think I can keep this up for another 6 weeks and then I am going to run another hour TT
     
  5. kopride

    kopride Member

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    Downloaded my PT last night. These figures are indoors and starting at 8:30 pm. I also have 11/11 and 11/13 downloaded but they are on my other computer. From memory, those figures average closer to 242 -247 and there is usually a drop off on the second interval. I was pleased to see my second interval stronger than my first. I am going to hit a 2 x 20 3 days a week plus fun group rides on the weekends for the next 6 weeks. We will see how these numbers go up. I am also going to do a one hour tt outdoors in six weeks to see how it compares with my July '07 of 258 AP. In July, I was struggling to average 232 indoors for longer intervals. I am generally 10-15 % higher outdoors. we will see.

    11/15: 1st 20min @ 249
    2nd 20 min @ 252
     
  6. kopride

    kopride Member

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    Nice hilly group ride on Sat of almost 3.5 hours, which is a rare treat for me. (This is the lull between fall and winter sports for the kids so it is easier to slip out for a long one). I still need to download my PT but I after we turned off the group to head home, I finished with a 20 minute solo pull where I averaged about 270W. I felt very strong on the hills

    This week I will do three more sessions of 2 x 20 and try and average 250 indoors. If I can get out for another long one on the weekend, this will have been a very productive Nov for me.
     
  7. jsirabella

    jsirabella New Member

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    I hope your mission is a success because you are pretty much just like me. I am 42, one child, run a business but I usually can put in more hours especially this time of the year as I do much less traveling. I can usually put in about 12 hours a week without much problem.

    My only warning to you is the vanity workout. Last year I also wanted to keep the upper body workout as part of my schedule as I did alot of weight training prior to getting into cycling seriously. I was keeping three - four days a week and riding at nights. It just was not working. I eventually cut it down to two than one. I also found I am a morning person and get my best workouts in the morning so cutting out the gym and getting on the bike in the morning made a difference in my performance on the bike.

    This is just MHO as everyone has a different body type and more important recovery ability. I have found making sure you have enough recovery time for me is the key to success.

    -Js

    Good Luck in your quest...in the end it will not be the goal that matters but the journey.


     
  8. kopride

    kopride Member

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    Point well taken. I have actually started doing a lot more body weight type exercises to keep my upper body looking presentable. I have a ten minute gymnastics pull up routine I do, which gets back arms and abs in one shot, some pyramid pull ups, and usually a brief shoulder routine. I usually bench once a week just for my own ego. My guess is total time currently spent "vanity training" is less than 90 minutes a week, usually in two 45 minute shots. Usually, I coach youth wrestling this time of year (10/30-4/10) which has traditionally made a good winter program difficult. I always did the calestentics, stretching, rope climbing, etc, with the kids so I got some benefit out of the season-- not to mention the pathetic coach's wrestling matches where 40 plus year old coaches would attempt to prove just how much speed and flexibility you lose 20 years after your prime! My sons are finally old enough to participate on the Jr High team so my winter is a lot freer this year. But weight training isn't much different than anything else. Quality over quantity. But you're right, 4 hard riding sessions plus 3 hard weight workouts per week and you might not see success on either end.
     
  9. jsirabella

    jsirabella New Member

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    In the end though you have to enjoy it or you will not do it. Especially IMHO in our cases where it is already so tough to make the time. Only the fun and enjoyment will be able to get me up at 5am on weekdays and ride the longer hours for weekends.

    The reason I am posting again is the point you brought up about quality over quanity. When I was focusing on weight training, I was working out even than too often and never saw the gains in muscle that I hoped for. I notice now that the combination of the intensity of the bike and using that same intensity to the weights have results in huge gains in terms of my fitness than I ever have before.

    Across the board I am in much better shape than ever before and I look it...that is something I never expected with my new training regimen.

    So I guess in two words -> intensity and recovery...sounds like a good book title...hmmm...now got to get dave, alex and the orthers here to write it for me and we can share the profits.:D

    -Js





     
  10. kopride

    kopride Member

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    I took a rest day on Monday but yesterday (11/20) did two 20 minute intervals where I tried to stay in the high 250s low 260s. I will download the data for the actual figures. (My best geussimate is that I averaged about 258) In any event, it appears as though I am making significant progress in only a few weeks
     
  11. kopride

    kopride Member

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    I did a one hour TT on Sunday and my new FTP is 262, which is a 5% increase from the last time I did a true one hour in July (250). I was rough estimating it over the fall at 255 so I guess I should be happy. I was hoping it would be closer to 270. All in all a very tough TT given the cold weather, need for booties and face warmers, and th busy social schedule over the weekend. I actually came back a little stonger on the second half so we will see how the next one looks. I think it was a sub best effort and I look forward to repeating another one in mid January

    As far as the training, on 11/23 I did 2 x 20 at 259 and 254; 11/20 it was 2 x 20 at 258 and 260. Given that I lose a bit indoors, but some allowance should be made for the lesser time, the 262 might be more accurate than I want to believe. In any event, I will adjust my training levels and I hope to trudge forward this winter. I would like to start the Spring at at least 275 FTP
     
  12. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    You probably are closer to 270 watts than you think. Remember, FTP is defined for your best long effort in ideal conditions including freshness and motivation. Face warmers, cold weather and off season solo efforts don't really qualify as ideal conditions. Personally I've only hit my best long FTP efforts with a number pinned to my back during race season and usually fall 10-15 watts short during long solo training efforts. Andy's advice to track your repeatable, regular long intervals as an estimate of FTP seems to work really well. The power I hold for my hardest 20-25 minute efforts of the week is typically what I manage for a 40km TT on race day. Don't underestimate the power of race day focus and motivation.

    Good job, I suspect you'll have no trouble hitting and passing your 275 watt goal before spring.

    -Dave
     
  13. kopride

    kopride Member

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    Thanks. I am back on the trainer tonite. If I can be at 275 in early Spring, then when the weather breaks, I can hope to get closer to 300 by the end of the season. And yes, if I was racing in a tt, I would hope that I could produce a better effort. I knew when I was going out that It was going to be subpar, but quitting would have been worse for me mentally than just gutting it our and looking at the data critically. I am going to adjust my levels based upon 262 for now and see if I can find a patch of good weather in January to run another TT.
     
  14. kopride

    kopride Member

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    Still on my quest but this is where the 2 busy comes in. Spent three weeks on trial (as an attorney) and training time is limited, a nasty cold from not enough sleep and stress snuck in there was well. I managed about two training sessions per week over the past three weeks, mostly 2 x 20 interval sessions. My numbers were down ten percent during the trials. Suprisingly, I was pretty strong yesterday (second trial wrapped up Friday) with both my intervals at an over 262 average. I should be able to get in 3 x per week plus a good weekender for the rest of December into Mid-January.

    Riding outdoors has been tough with very cold weather and overzealous work crews that have been cindering with a mix that includes ground silica, i.e. tiny shards of glass. Last weekend, my buddy and I only got 8 miles in on our usual route before we both flatted out multiple times on both tires, went through our co2s, patch kits, and spare tubes, before we finally had to call for a sag wagon (the spouse with an SUV). Very demoralizing and caused me to swap my summer racing tires for heavy Conti al seasons. We will see how these tires fare. But my old ones are trashed and I pulled out 20 shards with tweezers before I gave up trying to salvage them for a trainer tire.

    Despite the gods conspiring against me, I hope to keep working for my goal of coming into the Spring averaging over 270 for a one hour tt.
     
  15. upstateSC-rider

    upstateSC-rider New Member

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    I know I'm pulling for ya.
    I'm almost 42, 4 kids, and also have between 4 and 7 hours available training time, only difference is I'm extrapolating power with a Fluid2 trainer. If you can't do it there's no hope for me, keep it up. :D

    Lou.
     
  16. musher

    musher New Member

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    Hi,great idear to post your "Training Log".

    It is the "consistancy" & "Volume of Exercice" at 70% to 90% of (Vo2max ) in training to have the "Biggest Long Term Improuvement" on your " Progress".

    Improuving your subtainable Power at LT are a matter of "Accumulating Time at a Given Intensity".

    It takes 3 weeks for your body to adapt to a type of w/o(training) so , vary the time of interval (ex. day1:1x30' at LT + L3/ day2:2x25' at LT+L3/ day3:3x15' at 103%/105% + L3 )

    TRY different time/volume/intensity.I find doing longer intervals (30' -45'- 60' ) are better for inprouvement of FTP ,: ex : it TAKES (3'/4' for lactate to rise) , it takes me 5' to get used to the pace ,and i suffer for the first 10' to 12' (this is the time where my braine is telling me to stop stop ...) after my legs feel great ,so why stopping ? ,and also it takes 15' for my HR to be in LT .
    Try training in block: L4 -30' to 60' for 3 days -recover 2 days and do L4 2 or 3 days with some L3:p , ansd 1 day every week/10days try 1x 60' to 90' non stop at 85% +....

    The premier benefit of increasing training volume (at LT) is an increased capacity for Mitochondrial respiration,which, is imperative to improuvements in Lactate Threshold :) .It importante to get a good Volume betwen TEMPO( L3)& ( SWEET-SPOT) and Pure Threshold work each week.

    I hope it help. Ride hard, Musher
     
  17. kopride

    kopride Member

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    Great suggestions. Last night was 2 x 20 at 262, even after a rough few weeks at work, so you might be right that I am aclimating to the 20 minute invervals and need to change it up a bit. The nice thing about the 2 x 20s so far is that it allowed me to compare apples with apples from week to week, but that is probably the draw back as well. On my next one hour tt, my body will be saying "where's the break?" after the first 20 minutes.
     
  18. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    I agree with you about the week to week feedback, there's a lot of motivation in being able to objectively track your progress. But your point above is good as well. You might want to think about doing hard 2x20s some days and backing off a bit and working on extending time on other days. I find it easier mentally and I agree, it's a good idea to train yourself to hold steady power for longer than 20 minutes at a shot.

    One approach is to pick a power a bit below what you hold for 20 minutes say 240 - 250 watts at your current levels and hold it for half an hour then shoot for 45 minutes the following week. When you can stretch it to 50 minutes or an hour it's time to bump up to a bit higher power. It's another way to gauge progress and helps build the mental toughness to ride a steady power for longer. Rick M. got me thinking along these lines a while back and it fits really well with the idea of working down in intensity but up in duration during your weekly training blocks.

    -Dave
     
  19. kopride

    kopride Member

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    Sounds like a plan. I will start mixing in some 1 x 30; 1x15 sessions; and then a 1 x 45; and a 1 x 10, till the end of January. I still plan on a healthy amount of the "bread and butter" 2 x 20s as well. I don't plan on really mixing in intervals under 10 minutes until February, except to break up boredom from time to time. I also like 2 or 3 sets of under/over intervals: (1 min over 115% / 2 min under 85%) of about 12 -15 minutes as February comes into view. Those are great, there is no real rest period during the under and it is a good way of starting to ease into the higher level intervals without really knocking off the FTP plan.
     
  20. Piotr

    Piotr New Member

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    I have a workout that I like to do to break up the monotony of doing only 2 x 20 min or Tempo rides. I'll ride Tempo for 60-90 min with 5 min FTP intervals thrown in every 15 min. IOW, 10 min L3, 5 min L4, 10 min L3, 5 min L4, etc. Having to recover from an 100% FTP effort by riding Tempo is an additional training benefit. It's more interesting than typical Tempo or an even intensity Sweet Spot session. Here's an example.

    Another kind of SST I do is simply to start at L3 and gradually increase the speed until finally doing the last 5-10 min at FTP. Last weekend I stretched it to 2 hrs - TSS of 175.
     
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