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  1. #1
    Senior Member acape's Avatar
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    Maximize my 6 weeks before a race

    I'd like to do my second ever race on April 29, a 20-minute crit. I did my first race back in September, had a blast, and hung on great until the very end right before the sprint. Top 10 finish, though (out of 10, ha!).

    Problem is, in October I tweaked my back (not on the bike), and have been nursing it for a while, not putting in many miles. Last summer I was probably riding ~75 miles a week, but from October through February I probably logged around 100 total. My back is now feeling much better, and I am getting out on the bike more.

    So I'd love to do 8 weeks of base training and then start some intervals, but I'd really like to race on April 29. What's the best approach for me to maximize the 6 weeks I do have?

  2. #2
    Aut Vincere Aut Mori Snuffleupagus's Avatar
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    Meadowmont is on the 29th right?

    That's a tough crit course with two very steep climbs. I'd ride base with one fast interval ride per week after the first week or two, to allow yourself to get used to the training load. Ride with a local racing group if you can. Ride easier the week before the race, with some openers the day before.

    Warm up hard before the race.

  3. #3
    Senior Member acape's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snuffleupagus
    Meadowmont is on the 29th right?

    That's a tough crit course with two very steep climbs. I'd ride base with one fast interval ride per week after the first week or two, to allow yourself to get used to the training load. Ride with a local racing group if you can. Ride easier the week before the race, with some openers the day before.

    Warm up hard before the race.
    Yes, it's Meadowmont. I'm just wondering if I'm making a mistake to try and race that soon, after having basically been off the bike completely for a few months. Would I be better off making my first race of the season sometime in late May or June so that I can get a more proper base before intervals. Something like 4 weeks of base only training, followed by 4 weeks of intervals.

  4. #4
    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    I've had this discussion with my coach, when I didn't think I would be ready for a race. His point was that whatever form you have, you'll get better training from the race than staying home. So even if you're not where you want to be in 6 weeks, you'll be better off after the race just by having done it. Desire, ego, competition, will drive you to levels you can't accomplish in training.

    So worst case, you go and get dropped, you'll still get good training, and you'll be motivated not to get dropped next time.

    Only caveot is you need some base, but you've got plenty of time to get to the point you're not going to hurt yourself.

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    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    It sounds like you've been riding a bit already. I'd take the next two weeks and try to up my miles, and add just a little intensity (Fast pedal intervals would be a good start.)

    Next 2 weeks, I'd do some steady state intervals (i.e. 10 minutes or more at LT), and maybe a fast group ride.

    Last 2 weeks, I'd put in some intense intervals, like 1 minute all out, Taper toward the end of the last week and go race.

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    Quote Originally Posted by acape
    I'd like to do my second ever race on April 29, a 20-minute crit.
    Wait, 20 minutes? Not to be rude, but that seems like a really short race to get bent out of shape about. I'd say plan your training around the season, not one really short race. A 20 minute crit is basically a training race. I know as a cat 5 a lot of your races won't be very long, but 20 minutes is a short crit, even for cat 5. Just continue your base training for now.

    Unless you meant 20 miles?

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    Senior Member acape's Avatar
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    Well I've been riding for about two years, probably averaging 20-60 miles per week, but like I said, I basically haven't ridden since October, and am still nursing my back a bit, so I'm not probably going to immediatly begin to log huge weekly mileages. I'd say I'll aim for maybe 50 miles per week to start.

    So from what you said, perhaps my best plan would be not to rush training trying to cram a real multi-phase training plan into 6 weeks, but rather, go ahead and start a good base plan with the idea of really hitting form sometime later in the summer, but still go give it a shot at this race, just to get the experience, even if all I've done is some low intensity base training. Good plan?

    Quote Originally Posted by merlinextraligh
    It sounds like you've been riding a bit already. I'd take the next two weeks and try to up my miles, and add just a little intensity (Fast pedal intervals would be a good start.)

    Next 2 weeks, I'd do some steady state intervals (i.e. 10 minutes or more at LT), and maybe a fast group ride.

    Last 2 weeks, I'd put in some intense intervals, like 1 minute all out, Taper toward the end of the last week and go race.

  8. #8
    Senior Member acape's Avatar
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    No, unless there was a mistake on the website information, it's 20 minutes.

    Quote Originally Posted by deyendznyr
    Wait, 20 minutes? Not to be rude, but that seems like a really short race to get bent out of shape about. I'd say plan your training around the season, not one really short race. A 20 minute crit is basically a training race. I know as a cat 5 a lot of your races won't be very long, but 20 minutes is a short crit, even for cat 5. Just continue your base training for now.

    Unless you meant 20 miles?

  9. #9
    Senior Member Snicklefritz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by acape
    No, unless there was a mistake on the website information, it's 20 minutes.

    I wish my crits were 20 minutes, then I'd stand a chance of not falling off the pack.

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    . botto's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snicklefritz
    I wish my crits were 20 minutes, then I'd stand a chance of not falling off the pack.
    incorrect.

  11. #11
    NorCal Climbing Freak
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    Quote Originally Posted by botto
    incorrect.
    Indeed. The shorter the crit, the harder people go out from the beginning.

  12. #12
    Aut Vincere Aut Mori Snuffleupagus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grebletie
    Indeed. The shorter the crit, the harder people go out from the beginning.
    ...and Meadowmont makes grown men cry.

    It's a very well run course, and as a HUGE bonus - the health club on the course let racers use their showers for free afterwards

  13. #13
    Senior Member donrhummy's Avatar
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    Yeah, I'd say do two weeks of building up slowly. Then do 3 weeks of super hard, nearly kill yourself intervals/hill intervals, etc, and then 1 week of EASY recovery before the race.

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    [QUOTE=acape]I'd like to do my second ever race on April 29, a 20-minute crit. [QUOTE]

    20 min crit is not worth the entry fee! what is it a cheapskate promoter??

    our cat 5 crits are at least 45 min long!

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    [QUOTE=53x11][QUOTE=acape]I'd like to do my second ever race on April 29, a 20-minute crit.

    20 min crit is not worth the entry fee! what is it a cheapskate promoter??

    our cat 5 crits are at least 45 min long!
    I hope the entry fee is cheap. The end of April is a little late to be having training races that are that short.

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