The Year So Far...



kaparzo

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Apr 5, 2007
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This seems kind of strange, but the training's been funky lately, and having some outside opinions would be awesome. Thanks for any insights you might have.
 

daveryanwyoming

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Oct 3, 2006
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kaparzo said:
This seems kind of strange, but the training's been funky lately, and having some outside opinions would be awesome. Thanks for any insights you might have.
O.K. so the first chart is obviously your PMC with some form of best efforts recorded (5, 10, 20 minute?) the second is also a PMC, but what are the green bars? Weekly TSS? And I have no idea what the third graph is, but it's probably something weekly like TSS, hours and kJ but there's no way I can read the labels, what exactly are these additional charts?

But even without knowing the specifics, the first thing that jumps to mind is to always back out and think about the big picture and basic training principles when things don't make sense. Here's a couple I remind folks to go back to when they're struggling with workouts that are too intense or too much loading or perhaps too much rest.

Training works by stressing the body slightly beyond its current capabilities. Try to go too far beyond and things typically don't go very well or the athlete can't sustain it long enough to see progress. Don't stress it enough and there's no reason for the body to adapt.

Effective training requires appropriate training: intensity, duration, and frequency. Many folks miss one or more of these. Examples include lots of long easy miles without ever finding the time to introduce intensity, plenty of short hard efforts without sufficient duration or weekend warrior syndrome of piling the weekly workout into just a couple of days.

Sufficient short and long term training frequency also leads to the concept of training consistency. Piling on great workouts from time to time and then resting isn't the best approach, it's a lot like the weekend warrior's approach on longer time scales.

It's the lack of consistency that jumps out of your charts. Big loads followed by what looks like complete or near complete rest. Huge miles often fail as a training strategy because the rider can't sustain it long enough or continue to build week after week. Huge weeks followed by forced rest can result in constant training/detraining cycles. Sure you might feel great during those down weeks (if you haven't dug such a deep hole that you're simply trying to recover) but it get's back to the first point above. If you don't keep stressing the body slightly beyond its current capabilities there's no reason to continue adapting, or viewed another way your body starts adapting to the lighter loads.

Anyway, big weeks only work if you have the time and long term training history to recover from the big weeks. If they get you into a roller coaster load then rest cycle they're probably not the best approach for you. How about backing those 1000 TSS weeks down to 800 or so but do them for more consecutive weeks and don't drop your training so completely when you do need to back off or life get's in the way?

Anyway, those are my first impressions on these charts. You'll probably get other opinions, but you seem to have trouble with consistent training and coupled with the really big workload peaks it seems you're trying too hard to rack up the TSS but not really getting the best long term training as a result.

-Dave
 

kaparzo

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Apr 5, 2007
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I think that's the thing...I felt great during the big loads, and then towards the end started to feel fried...just in time for some serious rest periods. I think I built up a lot of stress that I couldn't maintain and now I'm paying the piper.

Does this make sense, I've had difficulty doing wattages that earlier were not too bad. For instance its difficult maintaining my SST for 5min, whereas before 20min was fine.
 

daveryanwyoming

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Oct 3, 2006
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kaparzo said:
...Does this make sense, I've had difficulty doing wattages that earlier were not too bad. For instance its difficult maintaining my SST for 5min, whereas before 20min was fine.
Yes, it makes a lot of sense. You feel great during steady builds or rests immediately following those builds. But you also feel fried after really big build cycles and glancing at the top (I assume 20 minute MMP) 10 power efforts, you don't hit many or top efforts when you're too rested and you're not training for one reason or another.

I hope you know the answer, 'cause it seems plain as day from here. Plan your steady builds to a level you can sustain not one that will blow you up. Take rest when you need it, but don't load yourself so heavily that you have to completely stop training when you rest, an extra complete rest day and perhaps a few easier rides than normal should be enough if you don't dig yourself too deep a hole.

The PMC isn't about racking up the most points or the highest TSS or CTL, it's a load management tool. Use it to manage your load to a level that works given your lifestyle, other comittments and ability to recover. From what you've described that sounds like backing down your load cycles a bit so that you can sustain them longer and or not have to completely quit training when you do need a bit of a breather.

Good luck,
-Dave
 

kaparzo

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Apr 5, 2007
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daveryanwyoming said:
Yes, it makes a lot of sense. You feel great during steady builds or rests immediately following those builds. But you also feel fried after really big build cycles and glancing at the top (I assume 20 minute MMP) 10 power efforts, you don't hit many or top efforts when you're too rested and you're not training for one reason or another.

I hope you know the answer, 'cause it seems plain as day from here. Plan your steady builds to a level you can sustain not one that will blow you up. Take rest when you need it, but don't load yourself so heavily that you have to completely stop training when you rest, an extra complete rest day and perhaps a few easier rides than normal should be enough if you don't dig yourself too deep a hole.

The PMC isn't about racking up the most points or the highest TSS or CTL, it's a load management tool. Use it to manage your load to a level that works given your lifestyle, other comittments and ability to recover. From what you've described that sounds like backing down your load cycles a bit so that you can sustain them longer and or not have to completely quit training when you do need a bit of a breather.

Good luck,
-Dave
thanks for the replies. always great to have "outside insight." i am curious to know where you think i should go from here. obviously lower loads that can be maintained and actually rebounded from, rather than crawled out of in hopes of fresh legs when the real training resumes. but what of limited power abilities in comparison to early season efforts? i refuse to believe i've detrained to the point that i'm less fit than i was at the beginnings of the season. will it just come around eventually, with smarter loading and a little more specificty---that was part of the plan anyway? i guess we'll see. perhaps some warmer weather, a little racing, and some more time will reveal some interesting results.
 

daveryanwyoming

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Oct 3, 2006
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kaparzo said:
... but what of limited power abilities in comparison to early season efforts? i refuse to believe i've detrained to the point that i'm less fit than i was at the beginnings of the season. will it just come around eventually, with smarter loading and a little more specificty---.
How long it takes to come back to form depends a lot on how deep a hole you've dug. About all you can do is take some complete rest (looks like you already have based on the charts you posted) then go back to some Tempo/SST work and rebuild towards a more manageable workload. Avoid the real high end work for a while (including races) and start rebuilding your form. I agree, you probably haven't actually lost the fitness adaptations you built, but you could be so deeply fatigued that it will take some time to regain your form.

Good luck,
-Dave
 

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