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Old 10-08-13, 04:07 PM   #1
mattm
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Base

It's that time of year, people are riding or thinking about "base"..

For a long time, I thought "base" just meant riding slowly for a long time. But after reading Friel again, seems like it's more complicated than that. For one thing, it's not just about Endurance; it's also about Force and Speed Skills. (see here)

The other surprising thing I (re-)learned is that z2 is not just riding slow. So LSD is more like "Long Steady Distance" than "Long Slow Distance".

According to this, zone 2 is 81% to 89% of LTHR. Power zone 2 is 55% to 74% of FTP. At least by HR, it feels like harder than I've ever gone in Base. (then again maybe my LTHR is too high?)

And an interesting tidbit from the Training Bible is how do you know you're base is good or improving? When your heart rate drift is no more than 5%, you are in good shape. (source)

Anyway, some food for thought on those long steady rides this winter.
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Old 10-08-13, 05:02 PM   #2
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If you do a real base you will be exhausted. Just in a completely different way then if you were racing and training in the middle of the race season. 2 5 hour z2 rides with other smaller z2 rides add up pretty quickly.
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Old 10-08-13, 05:09 PM   #3
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I mentioned in the other thread, I feel like power jumps too stochastic-ally for me to "stick in z2" but HR works. Doing 4+ hours at 130HR is not easy and you work up a huge appetite.

http://app.strava.com/activities/38184909
http://app.strava.com/activities/38049996


Doing force work last year changed my riding entirely. I used to stand to counter every surge, and now I'm able to stay small and remain seated and match surges via force and cadence and use standing as a real last resort, or to attack once guys let up.
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Old 10-08-13, 05:52 PM   #4
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Last year I worked up to Sat/Sun 4 hours riding at ~73% (AP).. It took me some time to get used to just cruising up the hills and putting pressure on the pedals downhill to keep a nice and steady pace (minimal decoupling)
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Old 10-09-13, 03:17 AM   #5
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I've got 16:30 scheduled for next week. Of that time, 15:30 is scheduled in mostly Z2. One day is 3:30 at Z2 with 4x20 lower Z4 intervals included, followed the next day by 4:00 in Z2. Thankfully, the following day is a recovery ride. Yeah, I'll be tired.
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Old 10-09-13, 05:32 AM   #6
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Given the huge range in Z2 I honestly have no felt experience what you guys are going on about. There's a massive different between 105 and 145. Four hours at 105? You'd probably be better off doing 120 minutes at 160-165 and watching TV for the rest of the time.
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Old 10-09-13, 05:36 AM   #7
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It's easy to stay in Z2 if you define a huge Z2! You have defined it as a band over 20% wide (in terms of max HR). This may be correct for you, but every source I know of suggests starting with bands that are 10% wide, or less.

I have the same max HR as you but I have my Z2 defined as 125-145.
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Old 10-09-13, 06:26 AM   #8
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The way Friel/Coggins describe Z2 is much different between HR and power. My Z2 HR range incorporates both my Z2 and Z3 power ranges.
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Old 10-09-13, 06:47 AM   #9
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base...aka my annual 2 month long existential crisis induced by too many 4 hour rides in 30F
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Old 10-09-13, 07:08 AM   #10
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if something is that unpleasant how do you convince yourself it's actually benefiting you?
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Old 10-09-13, 07:11 AM   #11
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The way Friel/Coggins describe Z2 is much different between HR and power. My Z2 HR range incorporates both my Z2 and Z3 power ranges.
Yeah i've notice this as well, especially if i'm tired and my hr is slow to respond. I generally just go by power. It's not that hard to keep a pretty constant effort.
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Old 10-09-13, 07:15 AM   #12
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Yeah i've notice this as well, especially if i'm tired and my hr is slow to respond. I generally just go by power. It's not that hard to keep a pretty constant effort.
Low heart rate, especially when you wake up in the morning is a nice 'quick' indicator of fatigue.
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Old 10-09-13, 07:17 AM   #13
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yeah. for example 153 bpm should give me about 230-240 watts when i'm fresh, but when im tired it can be as high as 270 or 280

Edit: But normally i know i'm fatigued before i get on the bike. I listen to my body ebfore i look at HR. Too many variables
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Old 10-09-13, 07:17 AM   #14
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if something is that unpleasant how do you convince yourself it's actually benefiting you?
One of the fundamental differences though with regards to base is that there are guys like yourself, cdr, ex, shovel among others that have a bizzilion miles in their legs so there is a long history of base type miles in the legs. Some of the 'newer' riders don't have that type of mileage and have to build it.
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Old 10-09-13, 07:19 AM   #15
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or we just did stuff stupidly for a long time and we're saying kids should learn from our mistakes
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Old 10-09-13, 07:20 AM   #16
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If you do a real base you will be exhausted. Just in a completely different way then if you were racing and training in the middle of the race season. 2 5 hour z2 rides with other smaller z2 rides add up pretty quickly.
I have never been so tired as I was the first time I did a 3.5 hour Z2 ride. It was really tougher than I thought. On the other hand, the fitness that develops from knocking those things out can't be beat.
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Old 10-09-13, 07:22 AM   #17
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or we just did stuff stupidly for a long time and we're saying kids should learn from our mistakes
I love you old man. I'll listen to your words of wisdom!
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Old 10-09-13, 07:32 AM   #18
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Z2 seems easy on paper until you're out there for 3+ hours and still pushing down substantial watts, at least for me. The last time I did (2) 3 hour Z2 rides in a row I was COOKED. Actually after the first one I was thinking to myself, "damn my legs don't feel terrible but my whole body feels fatigued".

Z2 isn't that slow, and at least enjoyable as opposed to Z1 work recovery work. I just find Z2 solo to not be all that boring. I am just not used to holding 180W+ on descents(especially technical ones). I'm notorious for coasting downhill, lol.

I can't wait to be back in my hometown where I know all the climbs/roads and there are a million routes to choose from.
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Old 10-09-13, 07:40 AM   #19
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I am so not ready for all the threads about base.
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Old 10-09-13, 07:41 AM   #20
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I can promise you there will be only one
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Old 10-09-13, 07:43 AM   #21
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Some of you may know this but I coach a few guys. One of the guys I coach is on here and is new to the sport (this was his first year racing). He made his Cat 3 upgrade and I believe that he would have made it to a 2 had there not been some mid year setbacks. He is currently in his base period and he is super dedicated to whatever is prescribed and is often disobedient and goes beyond what has been prescribed. THat is not a bad thing at this point in his young career.
This is his ride from Saturday (posting only with his permission btw):

His average power was 68% of his current ftp.

He followed Saturday's ride up with this one on Sunday:

His average power on this ride was 66% of ftp

This week is a rest week after several big weeks. At the rate he is developing he is going to rip some fields apart early next year. When early in your riding career you have to develop the diesel side of the engine the hone it for speed. This type of training plan is how I developed with 20+ hour weeks for years. But that was a different time, as I developed that base early I have always been able to maintain it.
Secondly as you rise through the categories you have to acclimate yourself to distance. I am training this young guy like a Cat 1 as I fully believe in him and know that his 2 upgrade will come early in the season and I believe he will get his one in less that a year from getting his 2 as his progression has been amazing to watch.

Point of all this is that base is important and if you have the time, will power and dedication it makes the world of difference in a career. ..
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Old 10-09-13, 07:56 AM   #22
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heavy squats, enough protein to shut down the kidneys, and 7 hour rides at hypothermia producing HRs


got it
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Old 10-09-13, 07:57 AM   #23
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Don't forget to crossfit until your muscle cells explode.
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Old 10-09-13, 08:01 AM   #24
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heavy squats, enough protein to shut down the kidneys, and 7 hour rides at hypothermia producing HRs


got it
Done.
It will be in my auobiography:
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Old 10-09-13, 08:02 AM   #25
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Don't forget to crossfit until your muscle cells explode.
Watch your mouth...
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