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Old 12-16-08, 01:33 AM   #1
captnfantastic
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I start training tomorrow: tips?

I am planning on racing for the first time this coming year (2009)

I just finished school last week (i'm 20) and have almost two months before I go back. I am dedicating this time to training, but I need some help. I'll ask a few questions and feel free to add any input you want. As for my current level, I can currently ride centuries no problem, I can keep up with my advanced group in my club (usually, I tend to get dropped in the hills). I have around 16% body fat.

1) How should I focus my time? hr/week? miles/week? I will be free to ride up to 4 hours 5 days per week. is less sometimes more?
2) what is a weekly traning schedule look like? in regards to rest and recovery rides.
3) What to eat, what to absolutely NOT eat? when to eat?
4) I hate weight training, is it necessary?
5)I use a garmin 305 with HR. should I pick up a cadence?
6)I love hills, but I don't have a climber build. Should I focus on flat ground training or climb anyways?
7) 6'1" 205lbs. This is too heavy for serious cycling so what is the best way to shed some lbs in regards to riding? Hills? long distances? more time on bike at lower hr?
8) I am willing to absolutely kick my ass for the next two months, please help me do it smart.

thanks!
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Old 12-16-08, 01:43 AM   #2
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If you do 4hr long steady distance rides for 5 days a week for about a month and watch your caloric intake, you should easily be able to drop a few pounds.

If I was in your position, I'd probably do these longer rides for 4-6 weeks, and spend the remaining weeks building intensity with SST type efforts (80-90% max HR) for as long as you can stand it. It's your first season racing, so you should go into with a strong base level and get stronger as you go along. You'll improve significantly when you start racing.

Climbing a lot is a great way to get stronger. If you have climbs, do them when you start building intensity. Maybe hit them hard 1x a week even while you're trying to lose weight.

I'm hoping Waterrockets chimes in with dietary tips. He's had success losing a few lbs over the last few weeks.
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Old 12-16-08, 02:53 AM   #3
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I've gone from 195 to 175 (6'0) in the past two months simply by not eating like a fat ass anymore. I really haven't been on the bike much. If you add eating well + bike, pounds will seriously melt. Remember, it takes 3500 calories to burn 1 lb of fat.
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Old 12-16-08, 08:34 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by captnfantastic View Post
I am planning on racing for the first time this coming year (2009)

I just finished school last week (i'm 20) and have almost two months before I go back. I am dedicating this time to training, but I need some help. I'll ask a few questions and feel free to add any input you want. As for my current level, I can currently ride centuries no problem, I can keep up with my advanced group in my club (usually, I tend to get dropped in the hills). I have around 16% body fat.

1) How should I focus my time? hr/week? miles/week? I will be free to ride up to 4 hours 5 days per week. is less sometimes more?
If you are doing intervals on a given day you don't need to make it a long ride.
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2) what is a weekly traning schedule look like? in regards to rest and recovery rides.
A common one is:
Monday: off
tuesday: sprints (short intervals)
Wendsday: tempo ride 2-3 hours
Thursday: longer intervals
Friday: recovery ride
Saturday/Sunday group ride or race or long endurance rides
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3) What to eat, what to absolutely NOT eat? when to eat?
Eat good food, don't eat bad food. Eat before you get hungry but don't eat too much.
I'm being a smartass here because there's entire books on the subject and because what works for one person doesn't work for another. If there was one single diet that worked for everyone we'd all be eating it.

I personally consider sugar and especially HFCS to be bad, except when riding. A little bit every once in a while is ok but cut out the sodas and foofy latte drinks. While riding of course you need easily digested carbohydrates. Processed food isn't as healthy as real food made from real ingredients. If you don't already know how, learn how to cook for yourself. For losing weight, cut back on food in the evenings- have a bit less dinner and no snacks. If you wake up really looking forward to breakfast then you are doing it right.

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4) I hate weight training, is it necessary?
No. Given your build, lack of strength is probably not an issue. When you get older (like mid 40s) then you need to start doing weight bearing exercise or running to promote bone density.
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5)I use a garmin 305 with HR. should I pick up a cadence?
If you need to work on your spin, then having a number in front of you can help. But you don't have to have it.
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6)I love hills, but I don't have a climber build. Should I focus on flat ground training or climb anyways?
Depends on the kinds of races you have locally and that you want to do. If you are sure that all you care about are flat crits or track racing, you can skip doing hills. But since you haven't started racing yet you are unlikely to know what you will like, so you should train for everything. Most "flat" road races have some small hills and they are often where a selection is made.

Don't decide that you suck at climbing yet. I've been beaten in long distance climbing races (what I am best at) by 200+ lb guys. Ok, only one, but that shows that it's possible.
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7) 6'1" 205lbs. This is too heavy for serious cycling so what is the best way to shed some lbs in regards to riding? Hills? long distances? more time on bike at lower hr?
More time riding will burn more calories. But you should also look at your diet.
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8) I am willing to absolutely kick my ass for the next two months, please help me do it smart.

thanks!
Even though you're only 20 you will still need to rest. Remember that you need stress (riding) and rest to rebuild and get stronger.
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Old 12-16-08, 09:29 AM   #5
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Its hard to answer these questions without knowing when your first race is. If its later I'd focus on base miles, cadence, and dropping the weight. If its sooner, I'd just work on intervals.
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Old 12-16-08, 09:41 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by captnfantastic View Post
I am planning on racing for the first time this coming year (2009)

I just finished school last week (i'm 20) and have almost two months before I go back. I am dedicating this time to training, but I need some help. I'll ask a few questions and feel free to add any input you want. As for my current level, I can currently ride centuries no problem, I can keep up with my advanced group in my club (usually, I tend to get dropped in the hills). I have around 16% body fat.

1) How should I focus my time? hr/week? miles/week? I will be free to ride up to 4 hours 5 days per week. is less sometimes more?
2) what is a weekly traning schedule look like? in regards to rest and recovery rides.
3) What to eat, what to absolutely NOT eat? when to eat?
4) I hate weight training, is it necessary?
5)I use a garmin 305 with HR. should I pick up a cadence?
6)I love hills, but I don't have a climber build. Should I focus on flat ground training or climb anyways?
7) 6'1" 205lbs. This is too heavy for serious cycling so what is the best way to shed some lbs in regards to riding? Hills? long distances? more time on bike at lower hr?
8) I am willing to absolutely kick my ass for the next two months, please help me do it smart.

thanks!
Fork control for weight loss. Don't eat after 6pm. Cut out the garbage completely.
Train smart. Don't just ride around aimlessly for hours on end every day. Get a plan and stick to it.
Write down some obtainable goals and journal you training.
Sleep and take naps to help recovery. Especially since you will be cutting the calories.

My weekly training schedule is mostly medium to hard tempo, some VO2s, and hard group rides. It will be different after the new year.

Last edited by substructure; 12-16-08 at 09:48 AM.
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Old 12-16-08, 09:52 AM   #7
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9) what is a good way of judging progress? just better speeds/time? how I feel? Seeing results is what drives people so what drives you to keep going and how do YOU calculate your progress?
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Old 12-16-08, 09:56 AM   #8
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If you do 4hr long steady distance rides for 5 days a week for about a month and watch your caloric intake, you will overtrain yourself.
Fixed.
OP, 20 hrs/week is a lot to jump into. You need to build up your training progressively and if you're going to do that kind of volume you need to get a lot of sleep and eat well.

If I were you, I'd stick with two long rides per week. Use your other days for shorter, harder rides and active recovery. And lifting is not necessary, so if you don't like it, skip the weights.
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Old 12-16-08, 10:16 AM   #9
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Ride a lot, sleep even more.
Become a monk for two months and soar at the end.
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Old 12-16-08, 12:02 PM   #10
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this morning I did 2 hours medium pace (7/10 difficulty) before I ate. Is this bad? I felt terrible for the first hour and never felt REALLY good at all. I think it is because I didn't eat.
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Old 12-16-08, 12:26 PM   #11
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Eat before you ride. Not a lot though. Just enough.
I train between 4am and 6:30am. I eat toast with peanut butter or oatmeal. Then make sure I have food with me to eat before I get hungry again.
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Old 12-16-08, 12:28 PM   #12
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Everyone's different but I have to have something in my stomach before riding. Usually a bowl of oatmeal (skim milk, honey, dried fruit on top) and big cup of coffee is good for a couple of hours.
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Old 12-16-08, 12:28 PM   #13
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this morning I did 2 hours medium pace (7/10 difficulty) before I ate. Is this bad? I felt terrible for the first hour and never felt REALLY good at all. I think it is because I didn't eat.
Yep.

If you are feeling bad, you are wasting your time on the bike. Hurting is different. You expect it to hurt. But feeling bad and riding slow as a result means you screwed up- either you didn't eat right or you didn't recover and need rest.

But you have to make that mistake a bunch of times before you learn.
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Old 12-16-08, 12:34 PM   #14
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Start today and starve yourself.

Skipping meals = pro. Skipping rides = not pro.
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Old 12-16-08, 02:36 PM   #15
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I am afraid training and weight loss might now go hand in hand... But if losing weight will in turn make me faster perhaps that is what I need to be focusing on.

oh and BTW I have a fair amount of knowledge when it comes to dieting, but my questions are more directed towards eating food as fuel instead of eating food as a part of everyday life. The food I eat needs to not only keep me healthy, but it has to be able to fuel my almost-daily workouts.
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Old 12-16-08, 04:34 PM   #16
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Put your training off until you've got a training plan. Otherwise you're just playing.
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Old 12-16-08, 05:39 PM   #17
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Put your training off until you've got a training plan. Otherwise you're just playing.
I disagree. If the OP is trying to lose some weight while he's figuring out what he wants to do, then doing a few 3-4 hour rides a week at low intensity will not hurt him...
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Old 12-17-08, 06:21 AM   #18
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no he's not right, but it could hurt him: ^4 five hour rides is 20 hrs/week...that is huge training volume -- I've never done that much. ericm979 has the right idea, imo.
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Old 12-18-08, 06:22 AM   #19
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no he's not right, but it could hurt him: ^4 five hour rides is 20 hrs/week...that is huge training volume -- I've never done that much. ericm979 has the right idea, imo.

I am pretty sure he means 4-5 One Hour Rides.
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Old 12-18-08, 04:56 PM   #20
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I meant I have 4 hours a day available to me five to six days per week. for the next two months. I am not saying that I want to train all this time, I am basically saying I have too much time on my hands.

Also, I have a difficult time going slow on my recovery rides... I just always believe faster is better. I'm sure this is wrong but its really hard to relax on the bike and take it slow
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Old 12-18-08, 05:03 PM   #21
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I meant I have 4 hours a day available to me five to six days per week. for the next two months. I am not saying that I want to train all this time, I am basically saying I have too much time on my hands.

Also, I have a difficult time going slow on my recovery rides... I just always believe faster is better. I'm sure this is wrong but its really hard to relax on the bike and take it slow
Then you're not going to recover. Do something else, or don't ride if you can't keep at it.

If you ride with a HRM, then figure out what you need to do to keep your HR in the recovery zone.
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Old 12-18-08, 05:33 PM   #22
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I meant I have 4 hours a day available to me five to six days per week. for the next two months. I am not saying that I want to train all this time, I am basically saying I have too much time on my hands.
I understand that, and I'm saying that you shouldn't even try. About the recovery rides, you're better off no riding at all then doing them too fast.
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Old 12-18-08, 06:06 PM   #23
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Also, I have a difficult time going slow on my recovery rides... I just always believe faster is better. I'm sure this is wrong but its really hard to relax on the bike and take it slow
That's one thing that heart rate monitors or power meters are good for.
Set a low limit and stay under it. Five year old girls on "My Little Pony" bikes with basket and tassels should be dropping you.
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Old 12-18-08, 06:35 PM   #24
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That's one thing that heart rate monitors or power meters are good for.
Set a low limit and stay under it. Five year old girls on "My Little Pony" bikes with basket and tassels should be dropping you.
People always say that, but even half my FTP will still drop the little girl on the little pony bike... or at least allow me to stay in her draft
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Old 12-18-08, 10:09 PM   #25
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my max HR is 200. today I averaged 160bpm over 60 miles (80%)

Recovery should be somewhere around 100-120 then MAX right? (50-60%)

If it actually hurts my performance going too hard every day then that should be enough inpiration to keep me going slow.

as far as weekly training goes here is what I have come up with through research:

1 high mileage day (I am thinking about 50-70 miles, 70 miles being the point where my energy is gone)

one recovery day (long and slow, following high mileage day??)

3 intermediate mile days (30-40 miles?)

1 hill climb/sprint day

1 rest day



how is this so far? Also, should recovery day come after high mileage or after some other day?

thanks!
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