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Old 05-21-09, 06:19 PM   #1
swak
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Training Plans

Can you recommend a good weekly 'program'?
Im looking to step up my game in racing, and looking for a good program to go with.

Any advice is appreciated.
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Old 05-21-09, 06:30 PM   #2
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What are you doing now? What's your background? How much do you ride?
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Old 05-21-09, 06:36 PM   #3
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2ish endurance rides/week (80-100km)
1 sprint intervals ride.
usually 1 race / 2 weeks.

This is my first year competitively riding road bikes, and looking to catch up to the average ability of my age group (22)
I have always been active in the past, so im not totally out of shape, but not where i should be.
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Old 05-21-09, 06:38 PM   #4
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Yah.. kinda opened question really. I could recommend my program if you have 15+ hrs per week and an existing aerobic base. Or we could point you to plans by coach someone-or-other that is crit centric and you're doing road races.

Questions to ask yourself are:

Where have you come from? (how long, types of training, types of races?)
Where are you now? (weaknesses, strengths, how many hours available, types of routes available, indoor, outdoor?)
Where do you want to get? (specific race goals? crits, road races, TTs - have to identify how the race specific goals compare to your existing weaknesses/strengths)

Be SMART (Specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, time-specific)
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Old 05-21-09, 06:40 PM   #5
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What do you mean by endurance rides?

If you're doing 2 long rides, and one sprint ride every week, then you're not really doing any other intervals (SST, Threshold, etc). That's probably not a good idea.

It depends on how long you've been riding though. If this is your first year riding, then building a base (long rides) is probably the best idea before you start putting in the intensity.
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Old 05-21-09, 06:42 PM   #6
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Nomad, thats exactly what im looking to push myself into.
Something like 15 hrs/week give or take.

I really want to devote myself to this.

But, im strong at climbing, lots of time available to ride, lots of outdoor routes (live right near mountains)
No real specific race goals as of yet, once i get more experience riding a variety of them, then ill jump on the specifics then.
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Old 05-21-09, 07:05 PM   #7
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Do a race or two and find your limiters first. You may think you're strong at climbing and may beat the other rec riders in a club ride, but until you race you never really know for sure.
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Old 05-21-09, 07:17 PM   #8
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Nomad, thats exactly what im looking to push myself into.
Something like 15 hrs/week give or take.

I really want to devote myself to this.

But, im strong at climbing, lots of time available to ride, lots of outdoor routes (live right near mountains)
No real specific race goals as of yet, once i get more experience riding a variety of them, then ill jump on the specifics then.
Makes it sound like you're in the "need to build a base" part. This is an odd time of year to really start base building.

If you're already racing a couple times a month with no real concern about results this year, you could easily spend a few months just getting up to the ability to handle the time on the bike (if you're talking getting to 15+ hours per week). Base building and high intensity don't really work well together.

On the other hand, there's a lot of folks here that are proof that you can get just as good - often better - results from a time limited routine (6-10 hrs per week) with more intensity. I'd argue that many of those folks have been racing for more than 4-5 years, and their aerobic base is well established for the level/types of racing they're doing.

Are you lasting through the races you're in, or are you getting dropped regularly?

The pretty standard response to all of this is to pick up Friel's Training Bible. His info on periodization is pretty much the gold standard there. The only thing I find lacking from his book is how to ramp up from what you're doing now to where you want to get. (eg - going from a 7-8 hour training week to a 15-16 hour training week, with a mix of intense intervals/racing).

To be perfectly honest, I wouldn't know what to tell you in that regard either. I know what works for me, but not sure how to translate it to others.

I also think there's a lot of merit to recommendations I've seen a number of times that for the first 1-2 years it doesn't hurt to avoid a structured training plan. Ride a REALLY hard group ride once a week. (one that you'll get dropped from routinely, but punish yourself to hang on). Race once a week or ride a moderately hard group ride. Ride one really easy day, and the other days just ride as much as you can at an endurance pace. This in itself is great training, honestly.

This will help you find your limiters and will likely hook you up with local "mentors" that can speak directly to your abilities and how to improve.
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Old 05-22-09, 06:16 AM   #9
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What kind of races are you doing & how have you done in them?
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Old 05-22-09, 06:36 AM   #10
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I also think there's a lot of merit to recommendations I've seen a number of times that for the first 1-2 years it doesn't hurt to avoid a structured training plan. Ride a REALLY hard group ride once a week. (one that you'll get dropped from routinely, but punish yourself to hang on). Race once a week or ride a moderately hard group ride. Ride one really easy day, and the other days just ride as much as you can at an endurance pace. This in itself is great training, honestly.

This will help you find your limiters and will likely hook you up with local "mentors" that can speak directly to your abilities and how to improve.

Nomad has spoken wisely. Nobody in their first years should do anything structured. Technique, tactics and teamwork must be developed. Increased fitness is just a byproduct of riding often at this point.

So ride your bike daily, build your stamina and ride with the fastest groups you have available until you have started to master the art of the peloton. Then after a couple/few years, you might think about specifics.
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Old 05-22-09, 07:04 AM   #11
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Do a few races first so you get a handle on pack riding and the mechanics of racing. Once you get that under your belt read this
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Old 05-22-09, 03:35 PM   #12
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This will help you find your limiters and will likely hook you up with local "mentors" that can speak directly to your abilities and how to improve.
This is also very good advice. Go to the local hammer rides, and give it your all. Get dropped and come back, make progress, get noticed, and make friends with the people that seem to know what they are doing and are not idiots or jerks. Mentorship by stronger/more experienced riders who can ride with you and observe you will be more valuable than internet diagnosis...
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