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  1. #1
    **** that mattm's Avatar
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    Improving your sprint

    That other thread got locked right when sprinting came up, and there was some good info there..

    So trying to capture it here and continue the discussion. This was where we left off:

    If someone hypothetically was pretty decent at 2min, but terrible at 20s, what sort of time/type of interval/and reps per week would prescribe to them? Hypothetically.
    Well, what's the goal? Why is this "friend" not winning races (what are the limiters)? Can strategy be changed to make better use of the 2' strength?

    It sounds like the goal is to improve 20" power, but I don't understand why.
    I finished last season well, I use strategy to affect races to suit better what I'm good at, seeding breaks and sustaining them. That sort of thing.

    But there are times when it would be advantageous for me to have a little more snap and acceleration. Getting a gap so I'm not dragging 5 guys with me across a bridge effort, or at the end of the race when the 5-man break is sprinting for placings, that sort of stuff.

    I would guess the key is to actually work on that duration effort and try to build muscle/improve technique. But I've never thought about how much time, or how many times/week (2? 3? add a little in on every day?), would be the best to improve it.
    I would start with lots of sprints. A slight uphill always helps me really keep the power down while not being spun out.

    Also try going for the sprints on Spectrum ride or something similar. That part will help you with getting comfortable in close quarters while ramping up/sprinting, and also timing/positioning. Timing and positioning are probably just as important as the actual numbers you put down, if not moreso.

    Hitting the weights would probably help too.
    Yep. I usually like to sprint from the valley between two hills. Right when the climb starts to slow me, I nail it. I think that's good for building the strength. Certainly a good idea to sprint on flats and downhills too though, to make sure you know how to produce there.

    6x15" sprints, once per week should be plenty. 5' or more between them, as it takes that long before the lactate starts clearing. By the 6th one, you should start to feel a little nauseous from all the work your liver is doing to keep your blood clean. This goes away after a few minutes though.

    Also, with a goal of getting a separation, are you jumping from the front, or back a ways? Always better to have a 5mph advantage on the front guys when they first see you. Are you sure you're putting in a maximal effort for the separations? How does the first 5" look compared to your best?
    500 meter sprint followed by 1.5 km recovery. Sprints start from almost dead stop.
    4 full out sprints (don't even look at power number), 10 minutes recovery, repeat for a second set.

    The one thing that I feel has to be defined when talking about sprinting is the type of sprinter you are and the type you want to become.
    Yeah, those would be good too (but a bit longer than I've done). I'm not sure what your lifting methodology is, but mine was to always be changing things in 3-week blocks, swapping out exercises for the same muscle groups. I think sprints should be done the same way, where you get 4 or 5 favorite workouts, and rotate through them. I guess I do the same with threshold workouts too, ZCI™s for a block, then STUCI for a block, then 2x20 for a block, etc.

  2. #2
    **** that mattm's Avatar
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    Rk's point about "which type of sprinter you are and the type you want to become" is interesting..

    What types are there? (I have some guesses but would like to hear from an expert)

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    soon to be gsteinc... rkwaki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattm View Post
    Rk's point about "which type of sprinter you are and the type you want to become" is interesting..

    What types are there? (I have some guesses but would like to hear from an expert)
    I'll try though I know CDR has some good stuff on this.
    You have flat out speed sprinters, Cavendish for example, he needs a fast leadout and then pulls through as the last man with flat out speed and equally impressive jump, though it is truly only a couple hundred meters at best.
    You have those that have a violent jump (stein for example) and is very hard to counter as those that use that type of jump usually sit in and jump right at their max sprint distance
    There are sprinters that need a leadout and those that have sheer raw horsepower.
    There are group sprinters (i.e. those that come out of the field) and are a little more aggressive.
    As I know you are crit focussed you need to evaluate what type of sprinter "you" are.

    Here is my definition of me:
    Aggressive - as I am a group sprinter I need to be as I don't have a huge jump - if there finish line is 100-200 meters from the last corner it is going to hurt me.
    Huge power - never really did any huge sprints but estimate I would max out around 2,000 watts when I raced at 180, FTP north of 400
    Preferred sprint for me is one starting from a very high speed, 38+ with a long run in (think Tour type sprints) as I don't need to worry about guys with a big jump playing that card
    And I can tell you exactly, almost to the meter how long I can sprint at 100% effort. When surveying a crit course I calculate backwards from the finish line where I intend to start my sprint.

    A lot of it works out to calculated science and understanding your strengths/weaknesses as well as those of the people you are racing.

    The big difference is I know "me" and what I can and can't do. If I am outgunned knowing that the sprint will not suit me I am a little lazy and let the cards fall where they may.
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    illusoryly superior Ygduf's Avatar
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    Thanks for the new thread.

    I guess to boil it down, I don't accelerate quickly. In races with 3' hills, after 30" I am generally at the back, by 3' I can crawl back up to the front, that sort of situation.

    For numbers, at 180ish, my "sprint" peak is around 1050. 15s, only 900ish. 3' last sunday I hit 470w, and season peak for 20' was 410 and the 51' pr was 385. My power curve is more like a slow burning fire.

    Power at all intervals from 2-60 has gone way up over the past couple years, but the peak has not budged. I see new riders who can deliver 30-40-50% more peak power after riding for 3 months and I wonder if I just don't have any fast-twitch fiber. I try to set things up so that I can use what I have to work with effectively, but dreams of 1200w dance in my head.

    I'll change up some of my rides to incorporate the 6x15" sets. Do you mean 5' between 15" efforts, or like 15" on 45s off x6 with 5' between sets of that?

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    soon to be gsteinc... rkwaki's Avatar
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    Then you need to train the muscles to deliver the speed.
    I believe 1,000,000,000,000,000% in gym work as I believe speed can be developed there as well as anywhere else. Muscles don't know the difference, they respond to load and that's it.

    1,200 watts at 180 should be achievable, it just takes focus and discipline.
    "if you ride it the way it's meant to be ridden there's no way any wife is less of a ***** than a bicycle." - gstein

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    I just want to go fast, what do I need to do?

    On topic: is there a loose formula for weight moved = watts? Something like 200 pounds of force = x amount of watts? Thing would change based on things like crank arm length ect. but it seems like there would be something similar.

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    illusoryly superior Ygduf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rkwaki View Post
    1,200 watts at 180 should be achievable, it just takes focus and discipline.
    My weird ankle mobility always made squats tough. Would deadlift or like goblet or lumberjack squats be the recommended course. Or is the answer just "yes" to anything that works fast-twitch strength?

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    **** that mattm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by misterwaterfall View Post
    On topic: is there a loose formula for weight moved = watts? Something like 200 pounds of force = x amount of watts? Thing would change based on things like crank arm length ect. but it seems like there would be something similar.
    Even if there was, what would you do with it?

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    illusoryly superior Ygduf's Avatar
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    Eric Heiden workouts of 300-rep leg presses?

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    Senior Member jsutkeepspining's Avatar
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    Okay so i'll chime in becuase my sprinting abilities are decent. I'm more of a super tecnical sprinter. I dont have the huge watts of rkwaki, btu i also dont have the 0-60 ability of stien. I'm just a relativly strong kid who can follow the right wheels and end up positioned well in any circumstance.

    my peak is only in the high 1400s, my 5 second peak was 1399, but i see low 1300 more often than not. my 30 second is about 1000, my 3 minute is 500, my 20 min is 380. I am a true all arounder. I couldn't win a pure climbers race, and i can't win a high speed sprint against rkwaki, but i can compete in a whole slew of situations.

    One thing to try is sprint at huge rpms, you might surprise yourself. I used to think i had to jump at sub 100 when ever i had real gears (or low cat junior gear sprints), but after racing with junior gears in p/1/2 races i realized that jumping at 120 or so gives me huge numbers, and an unbelievable accelerations
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    Quote Originally Posted by misterwaterfall View Post
    I just want to go fast, what do I need to do?

    On topic: is there a loose formula for weight moved = watts? Something like 200 pounds of force = x amount of watts? Thing would change based on things like crank arm length ect. but it seems like there would be something similar.
    so, this is basically a physics question, but "200 pounds" is a force. imagine you weigh 200 pounds; if you stand on the pedals without pedaling, you ain't got no watts.

    you're really asking about a relationship between force and power. it is not linear (unless cadence is fixed).

    to simplify:
    power = torque * cadence
    torque = force x distance
    [x is not the same as *.]

    you push down on a crank arm which rotates. the reason it is not so simple is that you and i can get to the same power with different amounts of torque. you grind at 50rpm and i spin at 100; you have to push down harder than i do for each pedal stroke. if our cadence is equal but you're on 167.5 cranks and i'm on 180s, you will have to push down harder to match my power.

    standing up on the pedals "wastes" force because it doesn't generate any power…until you start pedaling.

    there's your (basic) formula; you can generate the rules from that, but we're drifting further OT here.


    it's not so simple to say X force = Y power.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattm View Post
    Even if there was, what would you do with it?
    No clue, just a curiosity question. Looks like teton cleared up why that was an erroneous question

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    Banana Pancakes furiousferret's Avatar
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    This post is relevant to my interests.

    I've never focused on sprinting, ever. Lately I've been putting in 3-5 max efforts to 15" in my Saturday rides. Occasionally at the end I'll finish it up with an arms up stretch, military salute, Cavendish phone call, and occasionally put a Peter Sagan move. I'm getting really good at the post sprint part, but I'm still really slow. (Sadly I'm only partially joking about this)

    Would 1 day of drills (6x15") a week and 2 days each week of squats would be a good starting point?

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    I would define sprinters as:
    1. Jumpy
    2. Top end
    3. Diesel

    Jumpy have high peak power and can really accelerate hard. So, say theoretically you have a rider that can jump hard from 38 mph on the way to 44 mph. Once they hit 44 mph they're done - hopefully they're at the line by then. Better for short slight/steeper uphills, into headwinds, the kinds of sprints where sheltering for as long as possible is the best. For me this is a Cav (I haven't watched enough videos of Kittel to say if he's one or not, but most pros have all three characteristics).

    Top End have massive top end speed. Sometimes they have a jump. Often they do not. I'm thinking of a Cipollini who really didn't jump as much as just sprint so fast no one could pass him. A local rider (nicknamed "Badger") once outsprinted the national M35 champ at Tour of Nutley - the Badger led out the sprint and the champ simply couldn't go around him. I've been on someone's wheel at 40 mph when I wanted it to be 38 mph and I blew up before I could even jump. These kind of sprinters are really good on downhills, on tailwind flat finishes, and with massive lead outs.

    Finally you have the Diesel. Maybe not as fast in terms of pure speed but lethal in super long, dragged out kind of sprints. The pro that comes to mind is Bugno. I know we're talking about "that" era but the characteristics are there. He'd go from 300m out at the end of a super tough race, like Worlds, and just keep going and going and going. Lemond is another one like this - not a field sprinter but very tough in a small group. These sprinters are good at the end of tough races, finishes where there's a hill that ends 300m before the line so the hill acts only to dull the actual sprint, races like that. Best in cross winds, on bumpy courses that negate a lot of the draft. A mano-a-mano kind of sprinter.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ygduf View Post
    Eric Heiden workouts of 300-rep leg presses?
    I think Bauer did 100 reps, 50% max, something like that. That was supposed to be a bit nutty.

    Bauer also did 53x12 roll ups to speed, standing/slightly rolling start in the 53x12, accelerate until you can't accelerate, shift down, spin, repeat.
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    powered by Racer Ex gsteinb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carpediemracing View Post
    I think Bauer did 100 reps, 50% max, something like that. That was supposed to be a bit nutty.

    Bauer also did 53x12 roll ups to speed, standing/slightly rolling start in the 53x12, accelerate until you can't accelerate, shift down, spin, repeat.

    I used to do that stuff. I actually started out doing timed three minute sets.

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    I should add that the jump is mostly genetic. No matter what my training I'm always good for 15 seconds. Heh. My weight helps determine my top speed since accelerating 215 lbs (2003) is harder than accelerating, say, 160 lbs (2000), but the acceleration was always there.

    I rode with my first true teammate after he took about 10 years off. He's always had a jump. He was much heavier than before, his bike was a bit of a mess, he looked sloppy on his bike. During a loop at the beach he pointed to a garbage can about 50, maybe 100m away. I jumped when he did. He immediately got about 8-10 feet on me. I quickly overhauled him a few seconds later and "beat" him, but wow, his jump hadn't changed a bit.

    I think training longer power is possible and realistic. That snap power, though, it seems to fall within a set of boundaries if you will and it doesn't change much no matter what you do.
    "...during the Lance years, being fit became the No. 1 thing. Totally the only thing. It’s a big part of what we do, but fitness is not the only thing. There’s skills, there’s tactics … there’s all kinds of stuff..." Tim Johnson

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    Quote Originally Posted by furiousferret View Post
    This post is relevant to my interests.

    I've never focused on sprinting, ever. Lately I've been putting in 3-5 max efforts to 15" in my Saturday rides. Occasionally at the end I'll finish it up with an arms up stretch, military salute, Cavendish phone call, and occasionally put a Peter Sagan move. I'm getting really good at the post sprint part, but I'm still really slow. (Sadly I'm only partially joking about this)

    Would 1 day of drills (6x15") a week and 2 days each week of squats would be a good starting point?


    I've hit the ceiling in the basement a few times. You know, adjusting my, err, hat.
    "...during the Lance years, being fit became the No. 1 thing. Totally the only thing. It’s a big part of what we do, but fitness is not the only thing. There’s skills, there’s tactics … there’s all kinds of stuff..." Tim Johnson

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    I forgot to mention something about the the squats part of your post. I did some pretty serious lifting going into the... 2009 season? Maybe it was 2008. Whatever. Didn't make a difference. I mean I was stronger overall, it was easier when we moved, but in the races I didn't notice much of a difference. No max power increases. I never examined efforts between a minute and 20 minutes so maybe there was something there but I doubt it. When I didn't lift but lost weight instead I had a phenomenal year, in 2010.
    "...during the Lance years, being fit became the No. 1 thing. Totally the only thing. It’s a big part of what we do, but fitness is not the only thing. There’s skills, there’s tactics … there’s all kinds of stuff..." Tim Johnson

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    illusoryly superior Ygduf's Avatar
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    heiden posted this back in 2005

    Before the 1980 Olympics it wasn't uncommon for us to do the following:

    Find an old truck tire intertube and cut out about one third of the tire (where the valve is). Seal one end by tying and taping with duct tape.

    Fill intertube with either lead shot or pennies until alomost full. Seal off other end. I made several sizes but the biggest ones I figured weighed about 150lbs.

    Swing the anaconda on your lower back and assume the speed skating position. Do 1 x 100 squats with each leg. Do that 5 x. Then repeat with both legs. Going down to slightly below 90 degrees.

    Right after these we would drop the tube then do 15 - 20 squat jumps as high as you can bringing your legs up to your chest a the peak.

    Usually the last one you would fall down because you could not support your weight anymore.

    Dang, those were the days...and that was only workout number 1. usually we did 3 workouts a day.

    Weights
    Dryland skating simulation (duckwalk for 10k)
    cycling/running

    repeat.

    Eric

    Read more: http://www.letsrun.com/forum/flat_re...#ixzz2ih5hdjv8

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    Resident Alien Racer Ex's Avatar
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    Sprinting is not what Fudgy is really after if I read his post right. If I am mistaken, apologies. But what he seemed to be after was separation, which is a bit of a different animal because by definition in can't be a maximal effort. Really two different skill set with pretty different tactical considerations and physical requirements.

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    These Guys Eat Oreos Creatre's Avatar
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    Meh, sprinting.

    You guys work on that while I actually work on stuff that wins races. My 800w peak has no problem getting separation or winning field sprints.
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    soon to be gsteinc... rkwaki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Creatre View Post
    Meh, sprinting.

    You guys work on that while I actually work on stuff that wins races. My 800w peak has no problem getting separation or winning field sprints.
    When you weigh 63 pounds 800w is plenty of power...
    "if you ride it the way it's meant to be ridden there's no way any wife is less of a ***** than a bicycle." - gstein

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    powered by Racer Ex gsteinb's Avatar
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    if you have crap 20 minute power what should you work on? Probably 20 min power. FWIW I've never really trained my sprint. Coach has me doing some stuff more recently but at the numbers most guys imagine are barometers for this kind of thing I'm pretty mediocre. Work your limiters. The key is the race unfolding in a way that suits me. If there are better sprinters I'm a break away guy that day.

    +1 to what Ex said. The question doesn't sound like it concerns sprinting.
    Last edited by gsteinb; 10-25-13 at 06:31 AM.

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    gmt Grumpy McTrumpy's Avatar
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    my best ever sprints came early in a season following a winter of semi-regular gym work.

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