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  1. #1
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    keeping motivation high through the winter

    I just came off my first season racing, and it went decently well. In December, different mechanical and biomechanical things have kept me from being on the bike consistently. I do have a training plan, I'm just wondering if a lull in motivation is something others experience in the winter as well. There are still about 14 weeks until the first major race, so I'm not too worried yet as my plan is to get back on track by the new year. I'm hoping 2-3 weeks worth of missed workouts isn't too big of a hole to get out of

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    Senior Member jsutkeepspining's Avatar
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    Nope, i fire at 110% all day everyday of the year. #datswhyirock .

    Now the serious answer. Yeah, most people who live in a crappy weather environment go through a low point due to having to ride the trainer.
    cat 1-o-meter: wtf am i doing??????
    Quote Originally Posted by Racer Ex View Post
    You're not dumb. You're just less smart.

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    powered by Racer Ex gsteinb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by longe View Post
    I just came off my first season racing, and it went decently well. In December, different mechanical and biomechanical things have kept me from being on the bike consistently. I do have a training plan, I'm just wondering if a lull in motivation is something others experience in the winter as well. There are still about 14 weeks until the first major race, so I'm not too worried yet as my plan is to get back on track by the new year. I'm hoping 2-3 weeks worth of missed workouts isn't too big of a hole to get out of

    with that attitude you're probably not winning the tour.

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    coffee-stained punk hammy56's Avatar
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    Sometimes i dont feel like riding. True story.

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    Banana Pancakes furiousferret's Avatar
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    Its hard. The high was 72 and I was freezing. I got out and got it done though.

  6. #6
    Elite Fred mollusk's Avatar
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    I put in a lot more hours and miles training in the winter than I do during the racing season.
    I'm the world's forgotten boy. The one who's searchin', searchin' to destroy.

  7. #7
    ride lots be safe Creakyknees's Avatar
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    Living amid the endless miles of suburban sprawl that is DFW, the trainer is the best way for me to ride extended efforts... I can do 20 minutes in my garage without stopping but would have to drive / pedal for an hour+ to have a length of road that long without a stoplight.
    "have fun and be kind"
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    Powered by Borscht ovoleg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by longe View Post
    I just came off my first season racing, and it went decently well. In December, different mechanical and biomechanical things have kept me from being on the bike consistently. I do have a training plan, I'm just wondering if a lull in motivation is something others experience in the winter as well. There are still about 14 weeks until the first major race, so I'm not too worried yet as my plan is to get back on track by the new year. I'm hoping 2-3 weeks worth of missed workouts isn't too big of a hole to get out of
    I think there's more motivation to train in ****ty weather conditions(winter) than in good conditions. Here me out:

    When living in ****ty conditions, most of your competition is going through a period where they're in a lull, not training, enjoying lots of food and hanging out on the couch. PERFECT time to get an advantage over them by busting your a$$ and getting on that trainer or going out and braving the cold.

    In good weather conditions, everyone is typically still training, there's not much gained over your competition by training and busting your a$$, you're keeping up more or less(unless you're training better).

    At least that's how I see it!
    -Cat-3-o-meter: TBD :/

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    Powered by Borscht ovoleg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by furiousferret View Post
    Its hard. The high was 72 and I was freezing. I got out and got it done though.
    I started my ride at 44 degrees and ended at 74...Twas a hard day bro.
    -Cat-3-o-meter: TBD :/

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    Resident Alien Racer Ex's Avatar
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    If you guys had waited till the afternoon, it would have warmed up. It was 78 at my place when I headed out.

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    Winter's usually a good time to mix it up and stay active and work on areas that cycling doesn't quite hit. Maybe throw in a couple of days of weights plus running, or lift and hit the erg, or maybe lift and swim. Do a few rides a week too, especially long ones, but if you can stay active through the winter and not hate your bike, then you're doing it right.
    Truth, like light, blinds. Falsehood, on the contrary, is a beautiful twilight that enhances every object.
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    Hammer Nutrition 15% discount!!!

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    Powered by Borscht ovoleg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Racer Ex View Post
    If you guys had waited till the afternoon, it would have warmed up. It was 78 at my place when I headed out.
    I like to be done in the morning before traffic hits full blast. I dunno, habit . The weather doesn't bother me, its so easy to warm up here even when its cold in the mornings!
    -Cat-3-o-meter: TBD :/

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by longe View Post
    I just came off my first season racing, and it went decently well. In December, different mechanical and biomechanical things have kept me from being on the bike consistently. I do have a training plan, I'm just wondering if a lull in motivation is something others experience in the winter as well. There are still about 14 weeks until the first major race, so I'm not too worried yet as my plan is to get back on track by the new year. I'm hoping 2-3 weeks worth of missed workouts isn't too big of a hole to get out of
    My main winter motivation is thinking about how many other racers have this attitude.

  14. #14
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    For me motivation is internal. Cycling is a pretty distant fourth in my priority list (family, time sensitive tasks, race promotion are the three before "training"). I train when it's the stars line up - family is handled (typically involves the Missus looking after Junior), any immediate tasks handled (if I don't change the litter or do laundry or take out the garbage on garbage day then there is a very real penalty that I can feel), and race promotion stuff (especially stuff that involves contacting people during somewhat humane hours) is done.

    Realistically I don't do well with early morning training; I've tried that, quite seriously at times, and it doesn't work for me. The best thing for me is to train late, when Junior is asleep, the Missus is asleep, no time sensitive tasks remain, and I've done what I can for responsibilities to other racers. This means getting on the trainer at 8 or 9 or 10 PM, even during the summer.

    For about 10 years I was so psyched to race that I only took time off when I was sick. I trained hard through the winter, raced and trained hard all season, and couldn't wait to race again once October rolled around.

    When I don't feel motivated I just ease off. The motivation comes back when the joy of cycling is fresh again.
    "...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

  15. #15
    avatar by Sean Powers mike868y's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carpediemracing View Post
    When I don't feel motivated I just ease off. The motivation comes back when the joy of cycling is fresh again.
    this is big. a lot of people seem to forget that we do this for fun. if you're not having fun riding, don't do it. there's a lot of talk and emphasis (especially on forums in comparison to real life) on "base" training and putting in huge hours in the winter. but if this doesn't appeal to you, there's nothing wrong with being active in other ways throughout the winter. I guess this is why cat 3 is known as the "ultimate" category because it gives you this type of flexibility and allows you to still have fun throughout the season.

    i've been putting in big hours this fall because i have the time (college student) and really love riding my bike. i doubt this will be the same when i'm working a 9-6 (minimum) office job.
    Quote Originally Posted by gsteinb View Post
    it depends

  16. #16
    Senior Member grolby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by longe View Post
    I just came off my first season racing, and it went decently well. In December, different mechanical and biomechanical things have kept me from being on the bike consistently. I do have a training plan, I'm just wondering if a lull in motivation is something others experience in the winter as well. There are still about 14 weeks until the first major race, so I'm not too worried yet as my plan is to get back on track by the new year. I'm hoping 2-3 weeks worth of missed workouts isn't too big of a hole to get out of
    If you're having trouble getting psyched to train, you might as well take another couple of weeks off between the end of the last season and the beginning of this one. Half-hearted training efforts aren't going to do you much good. Everyone struggles to a lesser or greater extent with getting out for some workouts on cold winter mornings, but if you've got your eyes on the prize of great racing fitness down the road, you can make yourself do it.

    Quote Originally Posted by ovoleg View Post
    When living in ****ty conditions, most of your competition is going through a period where they're in a lull, not training, enjoying lots of food and hanging out on the couch. PERFECT time to get an advantage over them by busting your a$$ and getting on that trainer or going out and braving the cold.

    In good weather conditions, everyone is typically still training, there's not much gained over your competition by training and busting your a$$, you're keeping up more or less(unless you're training better).

    At least that's how I see it!
    Man, you just don't know ****, do you? There's a couple different levels of not knowing **** in this post. I recommend focusing on what your training is supposed to do for YOU, and not daydreaming about what slobs the other Cat 4 racers are.

  17. #17
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    To add to this, I almost doubled my training once I stopped racing for the season. It's because "going to a race" is much more involved than "going on a training ride". There's the drive there, registration, warm up, race, cool down, hanging out, often a food/social thing after (restaurant, visiting someone, etc), etc etc. I might net an hour or so of riding for a 6 or 8 or 10 hour trip. When I'm at home my net riding time will be about 30 minutes shorter than the amount of time I was unavailable for other things.

    My monthly hours:
    "Preseason" Jan - Feb: 34, 8 (I was sick most of Feb along with Junior plus I had to get ready for the races I promote in March/April)
    "Season" March - August: 13, 15, 16, 16, 13, 17 hours (each month)
    "Postseason" Sept - Dec: 26, 27, 21, 17 (holiday stuff in Dec)

    I hope to do some bigger hours in Jan/Feb of this year, in the 30-40 hour range. I expect my hours to drop off in March/April due to the race series.
    "...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

  18. #18
    **** that mattm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike868y View Post
    I guess this is why cat 3 is known as the "ultimate" category because it gives you this type of flexibility and allows you to still have fun throughout the season.
    The whole "ultimate cat" thing is a joke though.
    pro-meter: lol

    blog

  19. #19
    avatar by Sean Powers mike868y's Avatar
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    It is, but there's a nugget of truth at the heart.
    Quote Originally Posted by gsteinb View Post
    it depends

  20. #20
    Powered by Borscht ovoleg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grolby View Post
    Man, you just don't know ****, do you? There's a couple different levels of not knowing **** in this post. I recommend focusing on what your training is supposed to do for YOU, and not daydreaming about what slobs the other Cat 4 racers are.
    you clearly are ******** or didn't real the last part about "thats how I see it". It doesn't matter what they're doing, but if I am out training and I focus on my progress that's what counts. All I said was thats how I like to think about it. Read before posting, kthnx.

    You offer advice about taking weeks off, I offer advice about thinking about it differently. There is no ultimate right way to do this.

    But you can continue to be a jerk, idc.
    -Cat-3-o-meter: TBD :/

  21. #21
    Senior Member grolby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ovoleg View Post
    you clearly are ******** or didn't real the last part about "thats how I see it". It doesn't matter what they're doing, but if I am out training and I focus on my progress that's what counts. All I said was thats how I like to think about it. Read before posting, kthnx.

    You offer advice about taking weeks off, I offer advice about thinking about it differently. There is no ultimate right way to do this.

    But you can continue to be a jerk, idc.
    Sorry for being a jerk, truly. I was too harsh. But I did read your little statement that you were sharing an opinion. So? You think because it's your opinion doesn't mean it can't be uninformed and deserving of being called out as such? Don't hide behind a pathetic disclaimer. "How you see it" is lying to yourself. If you're focusing on your progress, as you put it, shouldn't you be focusing on YOUR progress? You say there's no right way to do this, and maybe that's true, but there are stupid ways to do it. And deriving motivation from underestimating the people you're racing against is a really stupid way to do it. I can absolutely guarantee you that the guys you'll be racing for podiums and wins (assuming you actually are a contender) aren't sitting on the couch, either.

    What you aren't getting is the additional context behind my comment that you don't know ****, which is that you've demonstrated repeatedly that you don't know ****, and it gets old. And that's okay, generally, because no new racer knows **** (and I still don't know ****). But when you post your little chestnuts, you're fronting like you do know what you're talking about. Yeah, I've been there, myself. You should seen me posting just a few years back. But I look at how I thought I was so smart back then, and it makes me cringe. Let's hope you stick with this and the same thing happens for you.

  22. #22
    Con forza e velocità Forza's Avatar
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    Lot of good points already in here..Up here in the PacNW, while not "cold" by standards of the rest of the country, we get the rain and we get short days due to how north we are, and even then they can can me quite dreary. I went through a similar period and just made to focus no further than a week out and create "chunks", they are easier to manage mentally than the 14 week horizon you are looking at. 14 weeks to me says, "hey, I can slack this week because there is time".

    In addition, I like what Grolby said about not worrying about the others...do it for yourself!! My main motivation to train is personal health/fitness and a promise to myself. I could choose any sport. I cycle, because I love the freedom it gives me and it's my time in a crazy day to clear my mind. I also, began trail running this year too to supplement.

    I love training in the Winter too. Why? Because, I get satisfaction when I get to the traffic light and I have steam rising off of my and people look at me like I'm nuts. Love it. It's all mental, just like race day. I also enjoy riding with my teammates and we train together to make us more dependable and accountable...it's a lot harder to bag it when somebody else gets shafted. Maybe in the future look into that route or group spin classes? It's amazing how the social aspect of training can make it a lot less "required".
    The greatest accomplishment is not in never falling, but in rising again after you fall. - Vince Lombardi

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  23. #23
    Powered by Borscht ovoleg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grolby View Post
    Sorry for being a jerk, truly. I was too harsh. But I did read your little statement that you were sharing an opinion. So? You think because it's your opinion doesn't mean it can't be uninformed and deserving of being called out as such? Don't hide behind a pathetic disclaimer. "How you see it" is lying to yourself. If you're focusing on your progress, as you put it, shouldn't you be focusing on YOUR progress? You say there's no right way to do this, and maybe that's true, but there are stupid ways to do it. And deriving motivation from underestimating the people you're racing against is a really stupid way to do it. I can absolutely guarantee you that the guys you'll be racing for podiums and wins (assuming you actually are a contender) aren't sitting on the couch, either.

    What you aren't getting is the additional context behind my comment that you don't know ****, which is that you've demonstrated repeatedly that you don't know ****, and it gets old. And that's okay, generally, because no new racer knows **** (and I still don't know ****). But when you post your little chestnuts, you're fronting like you do know what you're talking about. Yeah, I've been there, myself. You should seen me posting just a few years back. But I look at how I thought I was so smart back then, and it makes me cringe. Let's hope you stick with this and the same thing happens for you.
    I don't know much but I'm learning which is a great part about racing, mentally and physically.

    I'm glad we can make up

    <3
    -Cat-3-o-meter: TBD :/

  24. #24
    powered by Racer Ex gsteinb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grolby View Post
    Man, you just don't know ****, do you? There's a couple different levels of not knowing **** in this post. I recommend focusing on what your training is supposed to do for YOU, and not daydreaming about what slobs the other Cat 4 racers are.
    I don't know. Respectfully, I disagree. For sure you can find me on some cold wet day ripping my legs off in the basement with the very thought that most guys I'll be in races with did an hour tops. It's not much of a daydream, but a knowledge that what helps keep me near the top of the heap is having a better work ethic.

  25. #25
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by gsteinb View Post
    I don't know. Respectfully, I disagree. For sure you can find me on some cold wet day ripping my legs off in the basement with the very thought that most guys I'll be in races with did an hour tops. It's not much of a daydream, but a knowledge that what helps keep me near the top of the heap is having a better work ethic.
    I agree. I dont think Overies or whatever his name is was saying that is his only reason to ride in the winter, but its a good mentality sometimes not just in cycling. 'champions are made in the off season'. When I am killing myself at the track I like to think that my competition is watching Mrs. Doubtfire on their trainer in Zone 0.1. If you can use that idea to push yourself why is it bad?

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