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  1. #1
    Raising the Abyss celticfrost's Avatar
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    -14lbs & 20% power increase possible? How much pain, time, etc.?

    OK, so there's a local climb that currently takes me about 32 mins for me to complete.

    In the absence of a powermeter, I go to http://www.kreuzotter.de/english/espeed.htm , and plug in the numbers (weight, grade, etc). Knowing how much time it takes currently vs. my time based goal, kreuzotter is estimating that my power would need to increase by 22%, I would have to lose 14lbs and I'd need a bike that's 5lbs lighter. Yeah, that's right, I said my power would need to increase by 22% AND I would have to lose 14lbs.To me that just sounds pretty ridiculous. I'd be giving myself the entire riding season (about 6 more months) for this improvement.

    The easy part is losing 5lbs of bike, I can do that w/ my other frame and leaving tools, H2O, etc. at the bottom of the climb. Losing 14lbs is pretty doable (in about 3-4 months). I don't want to lose more than 14lbs. So, the hardest part is the whopping 22% power gain.

    The facts (aka, the ugly truth)
    • I'm 38.5 years old
    • I currently weigh 184lbs
    • In '05 I got back into cycling (after a 13yr hiatus), '07 was a bad year for me, so I'm some ways I'm starting from scratch in '08
    • "Base" miles for '08 so far ~600
    • Compared to much of the US, I'm in good health/shape. But that's still a ways off from a being in good "racing" shape/health


    How doable is this? I know it's a "stretch goal" to have for a single season, but I'm just wondering if I should temper my zeal w/ a dose of reality from this subforum. But that's not to say that I'm discouraging anyone from sharing success stories, pointers, advice, etc. either.

    Give up and just enjoy bon-bons, pork rinds and whiskey?
    Last edited by celticfrost; 03-24-08 at 01:46 PM.
    "...in Las Vegas where -the electric bills are staggering -the decor hog wild -and the entertainment saccharine -what a golden age -what a time of right and reason -the consumer's king -and unhappiness is treason..."

  2. #2
    Race to train jrennie's Avatar
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    I would think with only 600 miles in this year you would have a lot of room for improvement. Possible? Sure, just depends on your level of commitment.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Duke of Kent's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by celticfrost View Post
    OK, so there's a local climb that currently takes me about 32 mins for me to complete.

    In the absence of a powermeter, I go to http://www.kreuzotter.de/english/espeed.htm , and plug in the numbers (weight, grade, etc). Knowing how much time it takes currently takes me vs. my time based goal, kreuzotter is estimating that my power would need to increase by 22%, I would have to lose 14lbs and I'd need a bike that's 5lbs lighter. Yeah, that's right, I said my power would need to increase by 22% AND I would have to lose 14lbs.To me that just sounds pretty ridiculous. I'd be giving myself the entire riding season (about 6 more months) for this improvement.

    The easy part is losing 5lbs of bike, I can do that w/ my other frame and leaving tools, H2O, etc. at the bottom of the climb. Losing 14lbs is pretty doable (in about 3-4 months). I don't want to lose more than 14lbs. So, the hardest part is the whopping 22% power gain.

    The facts (aka, the ugly truth)
    • I'm 38.5 years old
    • I currently weigh 184lbs
    • In '05 I got back into cycling (after a 13yr hiatus), '07 was a bad year for me, so I'm some ways I'm starting from scratch in '08
    • "Base" miles for '08 so far ~600
    • Compared to much of the US, I'm in good health/shape. But that's still a ways off from a being in good "racing" shape/health


    How doable is this? I know it's a "stretch goal" to have for a single season, but I'm just wondering if I should temper my zeal w/ a dose of reality from this subforum. But that's not to say that I'm discouraging anyone from sharing success stories, pointers, advice, etc. either.

    Give up and just enjoy bon-bons, pork rinds and whiskey?
    Give up the first two, partake in the third when necessary.

    That said, your fitness will definitely be lacking if you've only done 600mi in the new year. You could very easily gain a good amount of power AND lose that weight simply by riding more, and harder.

    300+ miles a week with two days of intervals will get you there.
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  4. #4
    Just call me Chris
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    It depends. What is your base power now? For example: if you are at 200 watts and "only" need to get to 240, that is not too bad. But if you are at 400 and need to get to 500, well....., Good Luck Since the actual is probably in between, how bad do you want it?

  5. #5
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Join a race team. It's done wonders for my fitness. And don't use age as an excuse. Our best Cat 5 guy (now up in the 4's) is in his early 40's and placed 2nd and 3rd in races where the other big team in these races were college kids in their teens and early 20's. I'm the second to youngest person on our team at 28 years old.

    If you've only done 600 miles of base, then yea, there is huge room for improvement.
    Cat 2 Track, Cat 3 Road.
    "If you’re new enough [to racing] that you would ask such question, then i would hazard a guess that if you just made up a workout that sounded hard to do, and did it, you’d probably get faster." --the tiniest sprinter

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    Forget about base miles.... How many hours a week do you train?
    Please remember that all statements unless quoted, are strictly my opinion of what happened. That there are as many opinions as there are spectators attending. I just choose to publish mine on this forum. And would NEVER intend to purposely hurt or discredit any other cyclist.... With that said... HTFU!

  7. #7
    . botto's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wfrogge View Post
    Forget about base miles.... How many hours a week do you train?
    +1

  8. #8
    Senior Member Duke of Kent's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by botto View Post
    +1
    And then take the number you give us, multiply it by 7 or 8, and you'll get there.

    Because 600mi/30hr is a good 10 day stretch for me in high summer, and I'm not going to claim to do huge hours on the bike.
    "If a non personal post makes you feel as if you've been attacked, maybe the problem IS you."

  9. #9
    Raising the Abyss celticfrost's Avatar
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    Yeah, I don't know if I'm quite a subscriber to the "base" miles theory, hence the quotes. But for now I have kind of put the past month or so of riding into the "beginning to get my legs and lungs back" category. And with a mere 600 miles there should be plenty o'room for improvement.

    The good news is that for the the 1st time in 2 years I won't be traveling/ jet lagging due to work. Also, the gf pretty much gives me plenty of room for riding time (w/ the exception of most Sundays). I've also started bike commuting about 3 days a week and have met up w/ a team that should start doing hard intervals on Wednesdays. I'm planning on Wednesdays and Saturdays as being my high intensity days. And as my fitness picks up, throwing an odd Tuesday or Thursday nighter into the mix. There's TONS of weekly rides of varying levels starting in April and a couple of friendly, macho-man street duels on the bike commute home have already brewed-up as well.


    Quote Originally Posted by jcbenten View Post
    It depends. What is your base power now? For example: if you are at 200 watts and "only" need to get to 240, that is not too bad. But if you are at 400 and need to get to 500, well....., Good Luck Since the actual is probably in between, how bad do you want it?
    Yep, no worries ^there^. But the "how bad do you want it" pretty much sums it up.

    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post
    Join a race team. ...
    In progress, or at least attending various training rides for different clubs/ teams.

    Quote Originally Posted by wfrogge View Post
    Forget about base miles.... How many hours a week do you train?
    About 8 or 9 now, with a guesstimated 25% of that time at high intensity.

    Quote Originally Posted by Duke of Kent View Post
    And then take the number you give us, multiply it by 7 or 8, and you'll get there.

    Because 600mi/30hr is a good 10 day stretch for me in high summer, and I'm not going to claim to do huge hours on the bike.
    Damn taskmaster! 600 miles a week would probably put me at about 40 hrs p/wk given the terrain out here! But, I hear yah -- I plan on being up to 12-15 hrs p/wk by late April and going from there. Thanks for letting me keep (some of) the booze though.
    Last edited by celticfrost; 03-24-08 at 08:15 PM.
    "...in Las Vegas where -the electric bills are staggering -the decor hog wild -and the entertainment saccharine -what a golden age -what a time of right and reason -the consumer's king -and unhappiness is treason..."

  10. #10
    Aut Vincere Aut Mori Snuffleupagus's Avatar
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    Ride A LOT more.

    I don't ride all that much compared to my competitors, had knee surgery, and am at 2000 miles for the year...for weight loss, it all depends on your body fat. If you're already lean, don't worry about giving up power. If you have 'bonus' fat, then losing some weight will be a big help.

  11. #11
    1.9lb/in pseudobrit's Avatar
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    For a 20 minute blow-up I don't see why 22% seems so daunting. Hours should be somewhere over 10/wk if you want to see meaningful improvement, and that's not including any lollygagging around or ice cream rides, either.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Duke of Kent's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by celticfrost View Post
    Damn taskmaster! 600 miles a week would probably put me at about 40 hrs p/wk given the terrain out here! But, I hear yah -- I plan on being up to 12-15 hrs p/wk by late April and going from there. Thanks for letting me keep (some of) the booze though.
    I do 20+hrs a week when I have the time. Keep in mind I'm a single, post collegiate male who works a paltry 40 and then rides...gasp...for fun, 2-3hrs every weekday, and about that or more on the weekends. It's better than watching TV.

    During the winter I'm at ~14hr a week, and as soon as it gets up to 60F on a regular basis, I'll be racing every weekend, and riding myself into the ground. And, a Beam/Jack and Coke or three with friends once in a while keeps it light.
    "If a non personal post makes you feel as if you've been attacked, maybe the problem IS you."

  13. #13
    Burning Matches. ElJamoquio's Avatar
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    Last year, after two months of training (in May), I was ~175 lbs and 250 FTP.

    In October I was ~155 and 300 FTP.

    Yup, it's possible.
    Reacting is mind candy; it requires no thought. Thinking is tedious.

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  14. #14
    Raising the Abyss celticfrost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snuffleupagus View Post
    Ride A LOT more.

    I don't ride all that much compared to my competitors, had knee surgery, and am at 2000 miles for the year...for weight loss, it all depends on your body fat. If you're already lean, don't worry about giving up power. If you have 'bonus' fat, then losing some weight will be a big help.
    Ah, 2000 miles by mid March -- add that as another nice thing that I've heard about NC. But it probably hasn't been that much colder in Denver for me to only be at 600.

    The only excuse I could ever have for not getting more miles in is work chaining me to my cube for 60+ hours a week, but even then I could probably manage.

    Quote Originally Posted by pseudobrit View Post
    For a 20 minute blow-up I don't see why 22% seems so daunting. Hours should be somewhere over 10/wk if you want to see meaningful improvement, and that's not including any lollygagging around or ice cream rides, either.
    Perceived effort (on a scale of 1-10) during my last timed climb was ~8, so yeah without lollygagging over the next few months or so and putting in a perceived effort of ~9.5 hopefully will get me there and not put me in the ER.


    Quote Originally Posted by Duke of Kent View Post
    I do 20+hrs a week when I have the time. Keep in mind I'm a single, post collegiate male who works a paltry 40 and then rides...gasp...for fun, 2-3hrs every weekday, and about that or more on the weekends. It's better than watching TV.

    During the winter I'm at ~14hr a week, and as soon as it gets up to 60F on a regular basis, I'll be racing every weekend, and riding myself into the ground. And, a Beam/Jack and Coke or three with friends once in a while keeps it light.
    See, now that's just crazy -- I recommend you upgrade to Jack and GINGER(ale).




    Quote Originally Posted by ElJamoquio View Post
    Last year, after two months of training (in May), I was ~175 lbs and 250 FTP.

    In October I was ~155 and 300 FTP.

    Yup, it's possible.
    -20lbs & 20% power increase ≥ -14lbs & 22% power increase.

    Nice job, now it's my turn.
    "...in Las Vegas where -the electric bills are staggering -the decor hog wild -and the entertainment saccharine -what a golden age -what a time of right and reason -the consumer's king -and unhappiness is treason..."

  15. #15
    Making a kilometer blurry waterrockets's Avatar
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    I'm sitting on about 11% FTP gain in four months. Weight has been flat. I'm approaching a plateau though. I was coming off the best form of my life four months ago, so I think you've got room for 22% in 6 months. Losing the weight will be tough when you're riding as much as required.

  16. #16
    Aut Vincere Aut Mori Snuffleupagus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
    I'm sitting on about 11% FTP gain in four months. Weight has been flat. I'm approaching a plateau though. I was coming off the best form of my life four months ago, so I think you've got room for 22% in 6 months. Losing the weight will be tough when you're riding as much as required.
    Big plus one. Gaining power and losing weight at the same time can be extraordinarily difficult, if not downright impossible for an already fit cyclist.

  17. #17
    Raising the Abyss celticfrost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
    I'm sitting on about 11% FTP gain in four months. Weight has been flat. I'm approaching a plateau though. I was coming off the best form of my life four months ago, so I think you've got room for 22% in 6 months. Losing the weight will be tough when you're riding as much as required.
    Yeah, as I most likely won't be collecting points, wins, and kisses from the podium girls one of my greatest rewards will being able to eat like a horse in a few months. I plan on trying to be at about a 350 average calorie deficit p/ day until ~12-14lbs come off. Then hoping that my appetite and riding kind of balance each other out for the rest of the season.

    And can you guess what 4.5 mile climb I'm using as a baseline?
    "...in Las Vegas where -the electric bills are staggering -the decor hog wild -and the entertainment saccharine -what a golden age -what a time of right and reason -the consumer's king -and unhappiness is treason..."

  18. #18
    Making a kilometer blurry waterrockets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by celticfrost View Post
    Yeah, as I most likely won't be collecting points, wins, and kisses from the podium girls one of my greatest rewards will being able to eat like a horse in a few months. I plan on trying to be at about a 350 average calorie deficit p/ day until ~12-14lbs come off. Then hoping that my appetite and riding kind of balance each other out for the rest of the season.

    And can you guess what 4.5 mile climb I'm using as a baseline?
    Hmmm. Maybe a deer-populated hill overlooking the Coors brewery, with multiple parking locations that have played host to hundreds of unplanned teen pregnancies?

  19. #19
    Raising the Abyss celticfrost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
    Hmmm. Maybe a deer-populated hill overlooking the Coors brewery, with multiple parking locations that have played host to hundreds of unplanned teen pregnancies?


    Hah! I can't believe that I've never thought of Lookout Mtn. as an "Inspiration Point" type of place. I'm getting freakin' old. But at least it's high above the Coors brewery. The only thing w/ a more fetid stench than a can of Coors is the Coors brewery.

    But even sadder than that is that MY lofty goal of climbing it in 25mins would STILL be a full 6mins off the top Cat4 and in the BOTTOM 20-25% of the Cat4's and Cat4's 35+:
    http://www.americancycling.org/resul...okout-mtn.html

    These guys are fast out here.
    "...in Las Vegas where -the electric bills are staggering -the decor hog wild -and the entertainment saccharine -what a golden age -what a time of right and reason -the consumer's king -and unhappiness is treason..."

  20. #20
    Overacting because I can SpongeDad's Avatar
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    I'm a bit older and perhaps a bit fatter. Using a guided training program last year (only 7-9 hrs/wk; I have a time demanding job and 2 kids I actually like spending time with). I gained about 10-12% watts and only dropped a few lbs.

    Gaining twice that and droping a **** load of weight seems like a two year goal to me unless you can really bump up the training time.
    “Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm." (Churchill)

    "I am a courageous cyclist." (SpongeDad)

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    Making a kilometer blurry waterrockets's Avatar
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    I've done it in 21:00, and I'm a sprinter. You'll get under 25:00 for sure. That's just fit cyclist territory, not some goal made of unobtanium.

    Another concern is that it's not a steep climb, so you can work on form and maybe gain some aero benefits from lowering your shoulders.

    If you see my virginity out there, don't pick it up. It's old

  22. #22
    Raising the Abyss celticfrost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
    I've done it in 21:00, and I'm a sprinter. You'll get under 25:00 for sure. That's just fit cyclist territory, not some goal made of unobtanium.

    Another concern is that it's not a steep climb, so you can work on form and maybe gain some aero benefits from lowering your shoulders.

    If you see my virginity out there, don't pick it up. It's old

    Stop bragging. I was alot quicker than that when I was a virgin.

    But seriously, tell me that you did it in 21:00 after a few years of riding AND you were in your 20's??

    Yep, kreuzotter says that in the drops will save me some time as well --- that'll come w/ more flexibility and less guttage.
    Last edited by celticfrost; 03-24-08 at 02:52 PM.
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  23. #23
    Raising the Abyss celticfrost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpongeDad View Post
    I'm a bit older and perhaps a bit fatter. Using a guided training program last year (only 7-9 hrs/wk; I have a time demanding job and 2 kids I actually like spending time with). I gained about 10-12% watts and only dropped a few lbs.

    Gaining twice that and droping a **** load of weight seems like a two year goal to me unless you can really bump up the training time.
    Your results are a bit more in line w/ my current expectations -- but who knows.

    And a "**** load" of weight!!??
    Last edited by celticfrost; 03-24-08 at 02:54 PM.
    "...in Las Vegas where -the electric bills are staggering -the decor hog wild -and the entertainment saccharine -what a golden age -what a time of right and reason -the consumer's king -and unhappiness is treason..."

  24. #24
    Aut Vincere Aut Mori Snuffleupagus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by celticfrost View Post
    Stop bragging. I was alot quicker than that when I was a virgin.

    But seriously, I'm guessing that you did it in 21:00 after a few years of riding AND you were in your 20's??

    Yep, kreuzotter says that in the drops will save me some time as well --- that'll come w/ more flexibility and less guttage.
    Climbing in the drops doesn't always mean faster. More upright often means better breathing. Although, if you're going for that whole Pantani thing, some coke might help

  25. #25
    Making a kilometer blurry waterrockets's Avatar
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    Yeah, I was 21 years old. I'm much stronger now, but 13 lbs heavier. That was my 2nd year riding, when I went from Cat 5 to Cat 3 in six weeks (sprinting, not climbing).

    There are certainly parts of that climb where the bar tops are appropriate (the switchback sections 1/4 up and 3/4 up). That long section in the middle, with the paragliders on your left, is where you can probably get into the hoods, bend the elbows a bit, and duck the headwinds.

    Attack the steep parts and recover a bit on the shallows.

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