training to beat the hour for 25 miles

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by sharples, Aug 27, 2003.

  1. sharples

    sharples New Member

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    :( Hi folks,

    Just discovered the forum and have read with interest the many messages that have been posted about training for Time trialing.
    I have been riding for a while now but have only been really serious for the last couple of years, perhaps I’ve left it a bit late in life but I really want to break the hour for 25 miles.
    I seem to have reached a plateau in that I am very close to it (have done a 1.01 this year and an 0.31 last season but can’t seem to find that extra bit to get me under the hour.

    I’m 39 and have a max hr of 185 and weigh 82 kilo’s, I know I’m not going to get any lighter as I’ve tried to loose weight without success but I’m not fat by any stretch of the imagination! And there are plenty of guy’s that are bigger and faster than me.

    I’ve realised that if I can’t be lighter I’ll have to be stronger and with that in mind my training now involves at least one session per week of big gear climbing repeats on a three quarter mile hill with a gradient of around 1 in 10 in a 53x12.

    My heart rate is in the 160’s but my cadence is around the 70 mark it’s a long drag and it hurts but I do about 6 ascents using a circuit of local roads to recover between efforts,

    The rest of my training is based on 3 laps of an 11 mile circuit which allows me after traffic lights etc about 45 mins of level three at about 165/173 bpm, I can get about 15 mins uninterrupted effort per lap.
    Don,t really want to be on the turbo if the weather is hot!

    Then of course there’s a 10 or 25 mile tt at the weekend, I use a cadence meter to keep above 90 rpm when I’m training and racing and HRM to keep me at around 165/173 .

    I ride every other day because of family etc .

    Am I going about this all wrong or do I just need to refine or stick at it, or am I just crap!
    Any constructive comments would be greatfully received.



    Sharples
     
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  2. TTer

    TTer New Member

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    Cadence of 70 in 53x12 on a 1 in 10 hill? That would be 24mph! You must be joking? I have a 1/10 (sign posted as such) hill I use occasionally but I ride that in 39x19 and 39x21 and push about 68rpm at roughly 280W. 70rpm in 53x12 must be ~1000W on a 10% hill according to analytic cycling!

    I can't answer your question as I'm in a similar position really. The concensus is generally 2x15-30mins at 90-95% of your TT power, done once or twice per week. This will raise your lactate threshold and TT pace.
     
  3. veloguy

    veloguy New Member

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    Dear Sharples, you are definately on the right track! You and I are very similar: I am 38, max HR on the bike is about 182, and until I lost a bit of weight in the last month, weighed 80 kilos. If you are riding on a flat course, I wouldn't worry about your weight too much. I am able to ride 25 miles on a flat course, no wind in 56 minutes. I have only been cycling for one year, but have been a runner for 25 years, so I already had a good cardio system. Muscular endurance and muscular strength seem to be most cyclists limiters, I know they are mine.
    Your hill repeat workout is EXACTLY what I consider my key workout. However, I would get a little more specific about your training. Pick a landmark at the bottom and top of the hill and start and stop at those points each time. How long does it take? I take it the gradient isn't steep, thats why you are using a 53 x 12. To build strength, I would drop the rpm's to the 50-60 range. If that means you need to use a 53 x 11, you should. Your HR might be lower because you are stressing your muscular system more than your cardio system. Just time each repeat and try to be consistent. Also, time the recovery. What is it?
    You might want to consider dropping your other hard workout during the week. With your hill repeats and weekend TT, you might be tapping into you anaerobic system too much, thus having high lactate levels in your system too great a percent of your training time. Write back for any clarification, Kevin

     
  4. sharples

    sharples New Member

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    Thanks for your reply's folks, and for the good advice, let me apologise for my previous inaccuracy, I’m not trying to waste anyone’s time here, I genuinely want to improve, I have clearly over estimated the gradient of the hill as well as my cadence.

    I did the training session last night and although I hit the bottom of the climb with a cadence of 70, at the top of the climb I was down to 57 (should have checked this before I posted my message, D’uh!)

    The climb is .65 of a mile but using Veloguy’s advice I have found 2 land marks and they are Half a mile apart and it took just under 2 mins to cover on 53 x 12 with a cadence varying between 55 and 60.

    I have been unable to find out the gradient of the climb though, there’s no sign on it and nothing on my map, sufficed to say that its steep enough to give me a tough work out! (The gradient actually increases a little as you move up the climb)

    The climb is part of a circuit which is roughly triangular, from the top of the climb the route back to the bottom is 2.5 miles, half of which is flat.
    The remainder is downhill I twiddle around this on a 42x18 to recover, it takes around 5 or 6 mins.

    Veloguy, you suggested that I drop my other hard session during the week, I assume that I should replace it with a recovery ride!

    Also, do I need to change my approach to testing when it comes to hills, I usually ride a test at around 170 give or take a few beats but this leaves me no buffer for when I reach a climb ( there are no flat courses in my area) .

    Should I back off a little before a climb or ride the whole test at a slightly lower heart rate or just accept that I’m gonna have to go into the red.
    I usually change down as my cadence drops letting my cadence dictate the gear I’m in so to speak!



    Sharples
     
  5. 2LAP

    2LAP New Member

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    Maintain your work rate up the hill (i.e. back off on the climb); don't ride the whole race slower or go into the red.

    Remember that when trying to go under the hour you need to ride at more than 25 mph, as there are lots of times you have to slow. Train to race at 26 or 27 mph.
     
  6. veloguy

    veloguy New Member

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    Well, you gave us a little more info, but you didn't answer all the questions we asked you. Anyway, if you want to break an hour for 25 miles, riding 2 minute intervals with 5-6 minutes recovery is not going to train the proper systems. Obviously, you want to be able to ride continuously for an hour at 25mph. Your intervals should be much longer than 2 minutes. You have probably seen that some riders do 2 x 20 minutes at threshold. I am not suggesting you go that long, but somewhere between 2 minutes and 20 minutes would be better. You are on the right track with the low cadences you are riding at. That stresses the muscular system and is like weight training on the bike. Whatever intervals you decided to do, here is a good rule of thumb: your recovery should be ONE-HALF the time of the hard effort. For example, if you do 4-5 x 7 minutes, you should recover for no more than 3 1/2 minutes between hard efforts. Your HR should AVERAGE 85-90% of your max HR. That would be 164-174 for you. Kevin

     
  7. ric_stern/RST

    ric_stern/RST New Member

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    You're probably best using a minimum of ~ 4-mins for increasing VO2 max. The 2 x 20, or 3 or 4 x 15 etc., are the most specific to TTing and shouldn't be underestimated. I see no reason why you shouldn't do this, it is after all only 2/3rds of the target goal so shouldn't be too mentally taxing.

    I'm not a believer of specifically doing low cadence workouts, when you have a power meter and can ensure that the power is the same irrespective of cadence (obviously, in some situation your cadence will be limited by hills). I can't think of any benefit it'll give unless you want to learn to TT at lower cadence.

    On longer duration intervals (e.g., 15, 20 mins) the recovery period is pretty much irrelevant.

    On shorter intervals (e.g., 4-mins) it's still not that important, for e.g., it would be (generally) better to complete 8 x 4-mins with a long recovery period as opposed to having a short recovery period and only completing 4 x 4-mins. However, if the recovery was very long (e.g., 1-hr!) then you're obviously doing the intervals at too high an effort!

    Ric
     
  8. 2LAP

    2LAP New Member

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    Those 4 minute intervals should be done at a HR or power that ilicits VO2max (e.g. max HR and max min power). I've found that 10 minutes is enough rest for completing 4 min intervals where a heart rate zone (max HR to 10 beats below max HR is maintained).

    The longer intervals are done at TT power.
     
  9. sharples

    sharples New Member

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    Thanks for all the excellent advice guys.

    Based on what's been said I think that I can now put together a more efficient training programme using the longer intervals.

    The weather has taken a turn here and the nights are drawing in so I may have to think about the indoor trainer, but "no pain no gain" I suppose.

    There are about 6 weeks of my season left so I'll let you know how I get on.

    Best regards

    Sharples
     
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